Today we debut the Torklift Quick Disconnect StableLoad, a product designed to engage your truck’s stock overload system. Take this Torklift to your overloads. And roll the video!
It never fails that someone challenges me at a RV show about how their ten year old half-ton truck can carry any truck camper made. Sure it’s a short bed. Yes, it’s a crew cab. No, he has no idea what his truck’s payload is. But this guy has hauled a load of lumber across town once and he just knows his truck can handle anything. 6,000 pound long bed triple-slide with a full seventy-five gallon fresh water tank? No problem.
Early in my tenure as Publisher of Truck Camper Magazine, I would engage these knuckleheads and advise them how to properly match a truck and camper. I would tell them that their safety is my top priority and how an overloaded camper can destroy a truck through excessive wear and tear on the engine, suspension, and brakes. I would even tell them stories about distressed readers who contacted me after having made a truck and camper mismatch. They often end up losing a lot of money trading in their truck and/or camper to fix the mistake. Worse, they sometimes lose their enthusiasm for what they purchased the truck and camper for.
Thankfully, most folks are not knuckleheads. We want to assemble a safe truck and camper rig and hit the road to fun and adventure. For the non-knuckleheads, there’s a new product to help us build and operate safe truck and camper rigs, the Torklift Quick Disconnect StableLoad. We have not yet had the opportunity to test and evaluate this product, but the premise is rock solid. As we like to do, we contacted the top dogs at Torklift for an inside perspective on this new product.
The following is an interview with Jack Kay, Vice President of Torklift International, and Jay Taylor, General Manager for Torklift International about the Torklift Quick Disconnect StableLoad.
TCM: Let’s start from the beginning. What is the Quick Disconnect StableLoad and what does it do for truck camper users?
Jack: For the truck camper owner who often uses their truck without the camper, the Torklift International Quick Disconnect StableLoad is a suspension enhancement product that allows truck campers to run their stock suspension without expensive suspension add-ons.
With a camper loaded, Quick Disconnect StableLoad owners will have the suspension they need to control the load. Without the camper loaded, StableLoad owners will enjoy the comfort of their factory suspension system. The Quick Disconnect StableLoad gives you the best of both worlds.
It only takes a few seconds to activate the Quick Disconnect StableLoad system and it has virtually no negative impact on the handling characteristics and ride quality of your truck. You’re going to love it.
TCM: There are so many aftermarket suspension enhancement products on the market today. How does a customer know they may need Quick Disconnect StableLoads versus the other suspension enhancement products, like traditional air bags?
Jack: Traditional suspension enhancement products that address heavy loads include air bags, sway bars, shocks, and add-on leaf springs. All of these products are designed to be added to the stock factory suspension, but don’t necessarily work in conjunction with a truck’s stock factory suspension.
In contrast, the Quick Disconnect Torklift StableLoad is designed to work with the factory suspension by allowing it to engage the factory overload springs more effectively.
Above: The Torklift Quick Disconnect StableLoad engaging the overload springs
TCM: How does the Quick Disconnect StableLoad system work?
Jack: From the factory, most light duty pickup trucks, like our half tons, three-quarter tons, and one tons, come with overload springs on the rear axle. The way these overload springs are designed is that they are not engaged until the truck physically drops in the rear from a load. Most trucks are designed to drop between four and six inches before the factory overload spring is engaged. The truck manufacturers design their suspensions this way to balance the ride quality loaded and unloaded which in some cases, depending on the load, ends up being a bit of a compromise.
Anyone with a truck camper has experienced this if they have not addressed their rear suspension. The problem is that a squatting truck will be more difficult to stop and steer as it lifts weight off the front tires, suspension, and brakes. This can lead to camper owners having a white knuckle driving situation as they experience oversteer and headlights pointing to the sky.
Traditional air bags help to level the truck, but they actually unload the truck’s factory suspension right at the time you need it the most. Essentially, air bags are like footballs between the axle and frame of the truck. The air bags lift the truck off the spring.
Sway bars and add-on leaf springs will help to stiffen a suspension and reduce sway when the camper is loaded, but will make the truck much less comfortable to drive when unloaded. They’re not easily disengaged or removable like the Quick Disconnect StableLoad. They can also fight a factory suspension causing other unwanted side effects.