Suspension Upgrade Project Part I: INTRODUCTION
As your Web Producer, I think it is only fair that you be included in the ups, downs, and daily details of my average-and-abused-often S-10. Through a series of Suspension Upgrades, you will basically see an air ride transformation that resulted in the truck... looking exactly the same on the OUTSIDE as it did before. So if you're into external bling, keep lookin', but if you want to see an air ride system overhaul, this is the place. Enjoy these BEFORE pictures, and enjoy the tedious process of rippin' a truck apart.
Air ride suspension requires monitoring all the time and maintenance sometimes. Perhaps a perfect system would never need maintenance, but in reality, there is no such thing as a perfect system, which leads to the conclusion that all need maintenance. Some are higher maintenance than others (as we all point to our own ride and shake our heads in agreement). Fortunately, the system on my 1999 S-10 has been pretty reliable, and for years I have had relatively few problems. However, time has finally taken its toll, and four years after the original bag job by Sport Truck Specialties (and after many home re-dos), it is time to do a massive suspension overhaul.
Why? Because I am running mismatched sets of old valves, years of no water traps has taken its toll on the system, the remaining original air ride parts are wearing out, and technology has come a long way in those four years.
I would rather proactively prevent failures than respond retrospectively, and part of maintenance on bagged trucks includes recognizing potential weaknesses.
Adding urgency to this suspension upgrade is the fact that this truck is not only a daily driver, but a daily commuter - about 85 miles a day, to be exact. For a few years, this truck saw that many miles in a whole week. Now, I could just get a commuter Corolla and leave the truck cozy at home, but if I am going to drive three hours a day, it better be my in truck! I see no reason why air ride suspension shouldn't be 100% commuter status road worthy.
The objective for Commuter Status is to take an average, dime a dozen (haha) S-10 with a decent air ride suspension setup, and make some important suspension upgrades in order to create a system that is new, modern, reliable, simple, comfortable, and commute-worthy.