It's true, newer trucks are becoming harder to slam to the ground. As of late, all automakers are seeking to create the best products ever by utilizing the most advanced research and development possible. This means that there has been more focus than ever on delivering the best ride out of your truck's modern factory suspension. As the mechanics of a truck get more sophisticated, more work is involved to lay it out with airbags.

Since you can't simply add a set of airbags to a new Chevy or GMC fullsize without seeing some front alignment issues, the crew at Ekstensive Metalworks has designed a kit to make it possible. The kit basically raises the factory upper control arms for camber and then uses a drop-down steering spacer to keep the toe correct and minimize bumpsteer. Installing this kit does take more skill than what was needed to airbag previous GM trucks because you have to strip the upper portion of the front frame and weld on the upper control arm/airbag-mounting bracket. Though this takes some more work, the kit takes the guess work out of aligning the bracket because it lines up with two points present on the factory frame.

With big wheel openings on the fenders of these new trucks, the Ekstensive kit was designed for folks who want to the lay out their Silverado or Sierra on big wheels ranging up to 28 inches with a 33-inch-tall tire. If you want to install this kit with wheels bigger than 22s, you will have to cut all the trucks inner fenders and firewall, relocate the fuse box and battery, and get rid of the emergency brake system. Yes, this is a lot of work for something that wasn't so hard to accomplish on an older truck, but these new trucks sure do look good flat on the pavement.

What's in the box?
For $850, you get a front suspension kit complete with mounting brackets, Heim joints, steering spacers, shocks, hardware pack, and lower control arms with ball joints already pressed in.

Since Ekstensive Metalworks was also installing its rear suspension kit while we were at the shop, we thought we would show you it as well. This kit goes for $650, comes with a two-link, Panhard bar, airbag mounts, step notch with bridge and shock mounts, hardware pack, U-bolts, mounting brackets, and saddles.

The Final Word
After two days of shooting for this tech article at Ekstensive Metalworks, I had to fly back to Southern California for work and was unable to get photos on the relocation of the battery and main fuse box or plumbing of the air system. However, after reading this, you should have a good understanding of how to airbag the suspension of one of these new trucks with this kit.

SOURCE
Ekstensive Metalworks
www.ekstensive.com