Poll: Spring rate comparison of front to rear
This poll is closed.
Match spring rate as close as possible
3 30.00%
Front softer
3 30.00%
Rear softer
2 20.00%
I have no idea
0 0%
Doesn't matter my rigs a trail killing machine regardless
2 20.00%
Total 10 vote(s) 100%
* You voted for this item. [Show Results]

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Homepage Poll: Srping rate comparison of front and rear springs
Been a while since I updated the homepage poll.

Let's discuss spring rates in relationship to front and rear. Not talking about having softer vs harder spring rates. Talking about do you match the front and rear spring rate? Rear softer? Front softer? etc. Make a choice in the poll then discuss it. Give reasons why. If your choice what you run or what you'd like to run. Stuff like that.
I vote for matched as close as possible. This isn't what I have but is what my goal is on my current rig and any rig in the futre. Currently I have a stiffer spring rate in the rear. This has almost gotten me in serious trouble a few times. With the rear not maching when I've flexed out in the rocks my front flexes like crazy then the rear starts lifting tires and over I start to go. I've ran with a softer rear srping rate before as well and I've had the same issue but with the rear flexing too well. Also on road manner and normal trail riding seems to be a lot better with a matched spring rate. Some go with a softer spring rate due to lack of weight in the back. I guess with some types of trail riding this is ok. But for me it isn't. I usually end up putting a fair amount of gear and passenger weight towards the rear. This negates the softer spring rate.

There's my $.02
Equal is what I am going for. I am thinking of a vehicle's suspension twisting, if one end twists and the other does not, there is leverage and it becomes a pivotal point.
so lets say the front or rear is flexing while the other is stiff. once the softer rated spring maxes out the leverage transfers to the next flex point- the stiffer spring. This can be dangerous as when the vehicle flops, it does so with more force than a flop.

but, as one wheels their vehicle they begin to understand the spring rate's behavior.
See that's thing most people, including me, keep thinking about flex. When it comes to rock crawling and the like then equal is best IMHO. What about those folks who aren't thinking about flex as much? Those thinkin about road driving and general trail driving. Even those thinking about racing. not circle track or some car racin but off road racing. So post up especially of you fall into the not worried about flex as much category.
I am going with front softer. I haul a lot of stuff in my XJ and soon the landcruiser. The FJ80 does not get a lot of flex out of the back, a lot of people disconnect the front sway bar and leave the rear hooked up. But I am not making the FJ80 into a crawler but more of a all around drive to the trail and wheel rig.
Think about the weight distribution as well. good call.

Wheeling my full size I stuck with "soft coils" in the front and kept lift springs in the rear, flipped them around for a better ride and shackle flip. When I drive around town in the thing corners are interesting as the front bobs and the truck is stabilized by the stiffer rear springs. For wheeling, all around equal rates.. for a rig that drives to the trail, soft front stiff rear, but not too stiff.
Don is more along my thoughts...though softer has more to do with weight, which is why coilovers have dominated the market as you can tune so the front and back are not dueling.
Xtreme 4x4 did an episode on this a couple years ago with the Bilstein rep. Correct balance means high speed and crawling both benefit.
The longest softest springs you can run without wheel hop and the weight balance of the rig.
First question that needs to be asked is: what will this vehicle be used for?

Second is: What type/style of vehicle will this be?

These lead to the third - how is the weight distributed? Lighter in front/rear - or even?

And lastly: how is power distributed?

Matched front and rear in theory means that both the front and rear will flex (adjust either on or off road) the same.

However, if the distribution of the weight is not even, then the theory is blown.

If you have a vehcile with all the weight in the front
- as in a pickup witht he cab, engine, drivetrain in the front and a bed and axle in the rear
and evenly matched front and rear then even though the spring rates are equal, the front is way heavier and won't move equally.

However, if you plan on always pulling a trailer or a ton of gear in the back, the weight may be even after all
Or if the rear is loaded heavier than the front it again won't move cycle adjust or flew (whatever term you desire) the same.

Now what about power distribution (tip of the hat to Shane who mentioned wheel hop) If you have softer suspension for flex but can't keep traction because of wheel hop due to lighter spring rates this doesn't work either.

Basically, weight distribution, power, and useage of vehicle all need to be factors in making this decision.

Since the rear of my off-road vehicle is lighter
and my offroad vehciles won't be normally towing much
and the drivetrain weighs quite a bit more
and the power will be somewhat even with 4wd.

I voted for the rear spring rate to be softer (not by too much) than the front.

This will allow the front to flex but not sag under drivetrain weight
While allowing the rear to not unload because it's lighter but I've got 1 ton hauling springs back there.
Yet being stiff enough to eliminate wheel hop.
My big zuk is 55/45 front to rear the front is a little firmer than the rear.

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