This post is part of a full series on lifting your late model Ford Ranger or Mazda B-Series:

Here are the step-by-step installation instructions for the new, taller Skyjacker leaf springs. Note that I’ll be trying to improve these over the next few weeks as I collect photos and the correct torque specifications to include.

We’re going to start at the back of the truck for the simple reason that if you need to pause the project mid-way through and have your truck driveable, it’ll be high in the back instead of awkwardly high in the front.

This figure identifies the important parts mentioned in the Instructions for your leaf spring swap.

This figure identifies the important parts mentioned in the Instructions for your leaf spring swap.

  1. Before you start the build, try to get your truck to a car wash or powerwash the underside just to clear some of the mud and road gunk out so it doesn’t end up all over your garage floor when you’re taking things apart.
  2. Once your truck’s dry, bring it into your garage / work area and get it up in the air. If you have a hoist, this is super easy. If you don’t have a hoist:
    • Chock the front wheels securely (A)
    • Jack up the back of the truck. I found that placing the jack under the differential (H), lifting about as high as the jack will go (J)
    • Place one jack stand (L) under each frame rail (M) of the truck, at a point ahead of the rear spring hanger (B), in a manner that will not interfere with the leaf springs, yet as far towards the back as possible. You want the jack stand height set as high as they can go at your chosen support points.
    • Very carefully lower the truck onto the jack stands. Watch them to make sure they’re not being pushed sideways as the truck is lowered onto them. If they do go crooked, lift the truck back up, re-position them, and try again. Stable support of the vehicle is critical to your safety.
    • Lower the axle to point just before the tires are making contact with the ground.
  3. Remove the rear wheels and get them out of the way.
  4. Adjust the height of the jack supporting the axle so that it is *just* supporting the axle and not pressing up into the springs.
  5. Get under your truck with a can of WD-40 or other penetrating oil to spray all the fasteners you’re going to be loosening (read ahead to see what they are.). If the stuff has a few hours to work, it’ll be much easier to unbolt everything later.
  6. Get your tools laid out for handy access.
  7. Set up a work light under the truck so you can see what you’re doing.
  8. If you still have the factory shock absorbers (D), remove both of them now and set them aside.
  9. Loosen, but don’t fully remove the U-bolt (I) nuts on both sides of the truck
  10. (From this point on, work on one side of the truck at a time so the axle remains supported as you work.)
  11. Fully loosen and remove the u-bolt (I) nuts
  12. Remove the spring retaining plate (C) from the top of the leaf pack (E).
  13. Pull the u-bolts down and away, freeing the axle from the leaf pack.
  14. Loosen and remove the rear shackle bolt (G) at the leaf spring eyelet.
  15. Loosen and remove the front hanger bolt (B).
  16. It should be possible to work the leaf spring assembly loose of the vehicle at this point. Lower the jack a bit, if necessary, to give you room to maneuver the spring out position and set it aside.
  17. You can now remove any lift blocks that were between the axle (K) and the leaf pack (E).
  18. The axle will need to be lowered now to make room for the taller leaf spring.
  19. Maneuver the new leaf spring into place, being mindful of not installing it backwards. The little wedge (N) on the bottom of the leaf pack (E) should be angled so the lowered axle meets more-or-less flatly with it.
  20. At the front, fasten the front eyelet to the hanger using the new, smaller, 7/16″ x 5″ bolt (B) and using the thick 7/16″ washers. Don’t fully tighten it yet!
  21. At the back, use the factory bolt/washer combo (G) to fasten the rear eyelet to the shackle. Again, don’t fully tighten.
  22. You now need to maneuver the axle and spring so the locating pin at the bottom of the leaf pack fits into the hole on the axle’s mounting surface. The longer leaf will require that the axle be moved forward a bit (don’t worry, it re-centers at ride height). You may need to further loosen (but not remove) the u-bolts on the other side to help with this.
  23. Once you have the pin lined up, use the jack to lift the axle into position.
  24. Re-install the factory-length u-bolts, retaining plate and nuts. Do not tighten the nuts yet.
  25. Repeat steps 11-24 for the other side of the truck.
  26. Bolt the Superlift (longer) shock absorbers (D) into place, fully torquing to spec.
  27. Install your rear wheels (you can put the big ones on now if you have them, but don’t drive the truck in 4×4 until you’ve finished the front lift and put the big tires/wheels a the front as well.)
  28. Raise the jack to a height where the vehicle is no longer resting on the jack stands.
  29. Carefully remove the jack stands and set them away from the truck.
  30. Carefully lower the truck to the ground until its weight is fully on the , watching your axles and springs to make sure nothing’s out of alignment or catching anything.
  31. Fully tighten the u-bolt nuts, and torque to specification (please refer to Haynes or Ford workshop manual until I can post them here).
  32. Torque all hanger and shackle bolts to specification.
  33. Torque wheel lug nuts to 100 lb-ft.
  34. As soon as possible, get the front hanger bolt washers welded to the hangers to prevent the smaller bolts from rattling around. This should be done with the vehicle’s weight on the axle, if possible.
This is how the washer looks welded to the front spring hanger.

This is how the washer looks welded to the front spring hanger.

That’s it!

Your truck should be sitting 4.75″ higher than stock on its new leaf springs.


 

As always, I welcome your comments and feedback to improve these instructions.

Next Chapter: The Superlift and Coilover Combo Installation.