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2018 F250 Death Wobble

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Old 11-07-2018, 05:30 PM
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^^^Like I said dick you around typical dealership BS
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Old 11-07-2018, 06:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Back-in-Black View Post
That would be me, LOL. It's not all that common a problem but when it happens, it feels like the end of the world. I had a 1962 dodge 1/2 ton that would do it. No fun. As I've posted on here quite a few times, I hate the way solid axle front ends drive - add in the death wobble thing and I will NEVER buy a Ford or Dodge as long as they have that front end on them. Won't even go look at them. And the crazy thing is, it just doesn't make since to still use that suspension at this point in history. Most trucks spend over 95% of their time on paved roads so what is any strength you get from a sold front axle going to really do for you? Both Dodge and Ford now use IFS on their 1/2 ton trucks and if I was ever in the market for a 1/2 ton, I'd at least go look at them. Won't even waste my time with either of them in 3/4 ton + simply due to this crap they stick up under the front of those trucks.
They still do it because dumb dumbs think to have a “real truck” you need a solid front axle. The same people will also say leveling kits won’t wear out front ends.
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Old 11-07-2018, 06:40 PM
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Had the problem with Dodge and Ford. Both 4WD, both diesel, both lifted. The Dodge required a different drag link to accommodate the slight difference in steering geometry because of the lift. The F350 was a different problem and required a dropped pitman arm to solve the problem. These are heavy trucks slinging 35" rubber or better, and they are not going to act like an E 550. Actually I should say leveling kit, not lifted. I lifted an F350 too and that presented some other unanticipated problems.
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:12 PM
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Asking concerning light duty trucks, I have driven very few light duty trucks as all I drive have 12,000 lb steers, I've seen the video, looks terrifying!
Just looking for.an explanation as why I've never experienced this in HD trucks?
Dump trucks have 20,000 lb steers.
Seriously thanks
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:52 PM
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Originally Posted by joshd472 View Post


They still do it because dumb dumbs think to have a “real truck” you need a solid front axle. The same people will also say leveling kits won’t wear out front ends.
If IFS was so good they would use it on 4500 and 5500 trucks and real trucks have solid front axles

The new 4500 and 5500 trucks that GM has coming out next year are solid axle
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Old 11-07-2018, 07:54 PM
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The problem is one of harmonic vibration. The fact that the front axle is all one piece allows a vibration to propagate and grow in the axle / steering gear. When a harmonic frequency is induced into the suspension (due to a bump, a funny road surface, a worn out part or any number of reasons) that vibration will resonate and grow - basically feeding itself. This cannot happen with an IFS front end because there is no suspension spanning part for the vibration to resonate in. The frequency of the vibration that will do this is VERY specific to the each particular front end and is effected by length and other factors like worn parts and such. I'm sure you could get it to happen on an 18 wheeler if you tried hard enough but I suspect that you don't see it in them often or at all because the size, length, weight and so forth on those front ends may cause the required frequency to shift so far up or down the scale, it would be unlikely or almost impossible to induce that particular frequency during normal driving. It is also possible that a "damper" could be engineered to keep this from happening - ever and is installed on those trucks. I don't know enough about them to have a clue. It seems to me that a "damper" device placed on the drag link (not a steering shock type damper) could solve this problem but I don't see Ford or Dodge doing that for whatever reason. The "damper" would need to be placed on the drag link at some point along it's length and actually probably be a "break" in the drag link itself. Something like a sleeve over a break in the drag link with a hard rubber "bushing" that would keep the drag link from being all one piece and therefore not allowing a harmonic frequency to self propagate. But then, the axle itself probably is the real culprit here and you'd still have to figure a way to kill harmonics in it too. Bottom line, the size, weight and length of axles in larger trucks may be what is keeping it from happening.

A great example of what is happening here is the famous video of the Tacoma Narrows Bridge. A high wind situation set up a harmonic vibration in the structure of the bridge. The vibration self-propagated until what you see in the video happened and eventually the bridge collapsed. See that video here:


If you've been in or around the military, you may have noticed that they will not "march" over a bridge. They will stop a marching column before stepping onto a bridge and order "route step" (I think that's what they call it) which is everyone one just walk normal, no marching with simultaneous footsteps. They do this to avoid inducing a harmonic into the bridge structure via marching footsteps. They will resume marching after they have crossed the bridge.
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Old 11-07-2018, 08:00 PM
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Originally Posted by suzuki140 View Post


If IFS was so good they would use it on 4500 and 5500 trucks and real trucks have solid front axles

The new 4500 and 5500 trucks that GM has coming out next year are solid axle

Totally different type of vehicle and not one you would buy thinking it would have great driving characteristics. Solid axles are definitely stronger than IFS and that's why they use them in large trucks but it's just retarded to use them in light duty trucks that are used as daily transportation back and forth to work. We are way beyond the necessity to do that on light trucks theses days from an engineering and manufacturing viewpoint.
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Old 11-07-2018, 08:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Back-in-Black View Post
Totally different type of vehicle and not one you would buy thinking it would have great driving characteristics. Solid axles are definitely stronger than IFS and that's why they use them in large trucks but it's just retarded to use them in light duty trucks that are used as daily transportation back and forth to work. We are way beyond the necessity to do that on light trucks theses days from an engineering and manufacturing viewpoint.
I know you like your IFS truck but have you rode in a 05+ and newer super duty they ride pretty good I think if you don't think they do then go for a ride with somebody that has a old 7.3 4x4 leaf spring truck if you want your kidneys beat out then ride in that fine piece haha.


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Old 11-07-2018, 08:19 PM
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Yeah, I driven a few and rode in more. I do NOT like the way they drive at all. I also don't like the way the truck reacts to dips or the road leaning one way or another. It's hard to put into words but the problem is still there no mater how well it takes bumps. I think that I am an "over sensitive" driver and I feel way more than the average Joe and I just do NOT like the way they drive or ride. If I was going to buy an off road vehicle that would do the majority of its miles in off road conditions, a VERY tough IFS would be my first choice (like a real Humvee) but for that purpose and use, I could put up with a solid front axle too.
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Old 11-07-2018, 09:53 PM
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Originally Posted by ericinmich View Post
Just watched the video's, this is crazy, and on a brand new vehicle. One THT member keeps posting he would never buy a solid axle 3/4 ton and I was thinking what's the big deal. Can't believe there hasn't been a design change to eliminate it...
That might have been me as well since I just posted last week on my decision not to by a Ford when I bought a couple months ago. This was mainly due to the solid axle design on the Ford. As an ME, the design of IFS is far superior to a solid front axle in terms of ride quality and general suspension design. BinB did a good job of explaining the reason for the death wobble phenomenon. The solid axle is simply too large of a mass which is un-sprung and directly connected spindle to spindle via a compliant joint. Spindles need to be isolated from one another via a solid mount to the frame to eliminate the chance of unwanted vibration translating between them and causing an resonance situation.

I'm sure this can be reduced or eliminate with the correct damper but why doesn't Ford do this from the beginning?

Last edited by inboardman; 11-07-2018 at 10:11 PM.
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Old 11-08-2018, 02:11 AM
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I had an ‘08 F250. Bought it new in May of ‘07. Drove it for 6 years and over 100k miles. The reason I didn’t get another was based on my experience from having one. Rode alright when new. The ride degraded by 60k miles. Expansion joint highways were awful. At 80k miles death wobble set in. Nothing really fixed it. New shocks, new springs, alignment, ball joints, trackbar. It got to where my wife hated it and I didn’t like driving it anymore.

I bought and F150. It fits my needs. If I needed an 8 lug 4x4 truck today, it would probably be a GM.
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Old 11-08-2018, 04:58 AM
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Thanks BnB, Suzuki140, I figured mass and weight on HD vehicles would prevent any scenario happening that would induce death wobble.
While I'm used to solid steers with long leaf springs I've driven some Internationals with air bag suspended steers and feedback was not what I expected, it felt dead and didn't respond to my inputs, didn't like it at all!
Appreciate the explanation!
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Old 11-08-2018, 06:10 AM
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IFS definitely rides better, but solid IS stronger. Solid also isn't subject to the camber changes with a load that IFS is.

Tires play a big part in death wobble, put some Toyo AT2's on the truck and don't look back. Stock tires aren't usually very good.
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Old 11-08-2018, 07:13 AM
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Originally Posted by suzuki140 View Post
Until all that shit wears out haha
You are correct. I did replace steering damper this year on my 06 LBZ. Truck is used to haul 4500# camper as well as tow boat and 8000# AirStream. I should be disappointed front end needed work after 13 years...

TC nd Whaler
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Old 11-08-2018, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by joshd472 View Post


They still do it because dumb dumbs think to have a “real truck” you need a solid front axle. The same people will also say leveling kits won’t wear out front ends.
Can we as a group stop calling everyone we disagree with stupid. It's very annoying and adds nothing to this board.

If you don't think you need a solid axle don't buy one simple, if you want one buy it simple too. If you have a problem with either just get it fixed.
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Old 11-08-2018, 09:06 AM
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If you want a GM, you get an IFS. If you want a Ram or Ford, you get a solid axle. Plenty of other pros/cons to each truck that would take precedence over the type of front end that is in it IMO. The perfect, everlasting, problem free truck doesn't exist, simply pick the best truck for you and go with it.

I don't really care what truck someone chooses to buy, until they think their half ton can pull 12k lbs cross country in a headwind uphill the whole way just because the manual said it could
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Old 11-08-2018, 01:26 PM
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The dealer is telling me that Ford wants the technician to duplicate the death wobble before they will perform the TSB. I can't believe Ford would want the technician to drive 70 mph in a vehicle that could kill them. This is rediculous. Stay tuned. I told them I'm leaving there until it's fixed.
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Old 11-08-2018, 01:39 PM
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Originally Posted by FluidDynamic View Post
The dealer is telling me that Ford wants the technician to duplicate the death wobble before they will perform the TSB. I can't believe Ford would want the technician to drive 70 mph in a vehicle that could kill them. This is rediculous. Stay tuned. I told them I'm leaving there until it's fixed.
Also puts others on the road at risk as there is "Loss of Control" at the same time.
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Old 11-08-2018, 01:47 PM
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Also filed a complaint with the NHTSB.
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Old 11-08-2018, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by FluidDynamic View Post
The dealer is telling me that Ford wants the technician to duplicate the death wobble before they will perform the TSB. I can't believe Ford would want the technician to drive 70 mph in a vehicle that could kill them. This is rediculous. Stay tuned. I told them I'm leaving there until it's fixed.
See if you can get them to sign a legal "Release of Liability" for you!!!

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