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pickup bed sits crooked


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07-24-17, 02:11 PM   #1 (permalink)  
pickup bed sits crooked

It seems my '98 Ranger pickup bed sits crooked, or uneven when viewed from the behind. I took a picture of it parked on an absolutely level lot. It seems it's just the very back tailgate part that is unlevel, as up in front of the bed it is even and level with the botom of he back window. Not sure how well it's apparent from my picture, but there's a definite slanting down to the left (when viewed from behind) of the back of the bed. I've noticed it that way parked in my driveway and other places too, that slanting of the back of the bed when viewed from behind. The leaf springs look fine on both sides and the distance from the ground to the bottom of the axle is even on both sides. So does this indicate a badly worn shock absorber maybe on that side, or if not necessarily what else might be causing this?


 
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07-24-17, 02:14 PM   #2 (permalink)  
Shocks could play a role but often truck beds get wonky from being overloaded. Don't think I've ever owned a truck I didn't overload more than once


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07-24-17, 02:33 PM   #3 (permalink)  
Hmm well it's entirely possible I may have "overloaded" it in the past. If in fact it's not the shock(s) playing a role, how might I be able to tell for sure whether the bed is for certain wonky and if that is the case what might I be able to do in order to unwonk it?

 
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07-24-17, 02:47 PM   #4 (permalink)  
I've never bothered to try and straighten one back out. You might have someone put weight on the high side while you look underneath to see what gives or doesn't. If the shocks were the culprit you should be able to measure them and see if they set the same.


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07-24-17, 03:17 PM   #5 (permalink)  
If I have someone put weight on the high side and I look underneath and I don't see anything that seems to "give" but yet the crooked-ness or uneven-ness remains, I suppose that should indicate the bed is bent or "wonked" out of shape and is the cause? Or do I have that mixed up?

 
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07-24-17, 03:20 PM   #6 (permalink)  
It isn't uncommon for the bed to get twisted out of shape. It's not really anything I've ever given a lot of thought to - just continue to use. Now if it gets where it won't handle the load I need to haul, that's a problem.


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07-24-17, 03:43 PM   #7 (permalink)  
I've never noticed it not handling the load, or affecting anything, but it's just the crooked appearance that I would like to not have. Just kinda bugs me it looks crooked when its sits there. I plan on continuing to use but don't know if I can stop giving a lot of thought to it.

I will at least measure the shocks, though, and see if they are the same measurement... can I do that on uneven ground as long as there is no load in the bed, or would it be best to do it on a perfectly level lot?

 
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07-24-17, 04:31 PM   #8 (permalink)  
There's more to it, but, generally speaking, springs carry the load, and shocks control the bounce. So, unless you have air shocks, or have otherwise modified the suspension, I don't believe you will find that the shocks are the culprit. Although measuring your shocks may at least confirm that it is a suspension problem, as they will retract or extend depending on the amount of load on them. Assuming leaf springs, I would inspect the shackles, where the springs attach to the frame, and then measure between the top of the spring and the frame, obviously comparing the two sides. If coil springs, similarly measure between the contact points on both sides. Parked on a flat and level surface, you could also measure from the ground to the frame on each side. It is not uncommon to have a damaged or worn spring or mounting point. Then inspect the points where the bed attaches to the frame; could be a pad has come out of one side. If nothing at that point, sounds like probably a sprung bed, which is not uncommon either.

 
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07-24-17, 04:54 PM   #9 (permalink)  
Thanks aka pedro. It does have leaf springs. I'll do the measuring an inspecting as per your advice. Just the type of info I was hoping for here by asking. If I find anything that seems unusual or questionable I'll be sure to post back.

 
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08-11-17, 12:18 PM   #10 (permalink)  
Good post pedro. Unless you have air shocks or coil overs shocks don't support weight.

 
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08-11-17, 12:25 PM   #11 (permalink)  
Yeah I still havent had a good chance to take a closer look but I will. My inclination now is to suspect a "sprung" bed. thanks again

 
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