Trailer Life Magazine Open Roads Forum: Air Bag Helper Springs for MH ??
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 > Air Bag Helper Springs for MH ??

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TC&Z

Atlanta, GA USA

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Posted: 10/08/18 07:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi, I searched blog and did not find this.... We have a 2007 gas Winn Voyage 38J on Workhorse chassis. It has traditional shocks and leaf springs. It rides fine on smooth roads but is very rough ride when runs over cracks in concrete, or bridge edges, any type of road issue. Wondering if there is an air bag add-on upgrade kit? Has any one installed one? Does it help or is it a waste of money? I search internet and get lost in the many hits. I want to benefit from other RVers' experience. Any feedback, brands, tips would be appreciated.
Many thanks....

10forty2

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Posted: 10/08/18 07:27am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have an F53 chassis on leaf springs. I added air bag helper springs on the front. It helps handling, and ride leveling, but it really didn't do anything for ride comfort. Suggestions from the forums are to run the correct amount of tire pressure according to the manufacturers inflation charts based on the weight of your rig, and to change out shocks.


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donn0128

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Posted: 10/08/18 07:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

How long is your rear overhang? Shocks is your best first step. There is really not much your going to do or add to the chassis that will make much difference at the end of the day. Air bags could likely make the ride worse if over inflated. Correct tire pressure would be q free first step for sure.


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DrewE

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Posted: 10/08/18 08:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have air helper springs on the back of my class C. They definitely help the handling some, preventing some wallowing around (for lack of a better description), but don't prevent transients from reaching the coach. They mainly just increase the spring strength.

Replacement shocks can certainly help some. I would suggest seeing if Koni FSDs are available for your chassis. They are not inexpensive, but work nicely, and have special valving that varies the stiffness based on the speed of the motion (so they give good damping for big bumps but are not rock hard for little ones).

As was said, proper tire inflation can make a big difference as well. Also, if you have any play in suspension bushings, those clattering around can also exacerbate things. At the end of the day, though, a gas motorhome is not going to ride like a Cadillac or an air-suspension diesel pusher.





rgatijnet1

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Posted: 10/08/18 09:10am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Koni FSD shocks are NOT gas charged so they are much better over road cracks and bridge edges.
I have four corner air bags and altho they do not smooth the ride, in windy conditions that i experience in the Great Plains, I pump them up to 80psi and they minimize any swaying caused by side winds. I have used them for the last 5 years and they allow me to travel on the highway in comfort with some pretty high cross winds.

fyrflie

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Posted: 10/08/18 10:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You might also research Sumo Springs or Timbren Springs.
I installed sumo springs on my rear and they do a good job of assisting with sway and eliminating the jarring action you describe.
And the best part is they are solid rubber so you don’t have to worry about correct air pressure or adjusting for the load.

Brian in Michigan

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Posted: 10/08/18 02:46pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I put Air Lift Bags on the back of my P-30 chassis about 5 years ago. It was able to get the lift I needed. And believe it or not, it improved my ride and helped with the stability somewhat. I would do it again. I ran the 2 lines back to the compartment next to where I keep the portable air compressor.


1990 GEORGIE BOY 28' 454 4BBL, TURBO 400 TRANS, Thorley Headers B&M trans cooler. Flowmaster mufflers recurved distributor Still Keepin on Truckin((((Was 7.5mpg Now 8.75mpg ))))

rgatijnet1

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Posted: 10/08/18 02:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When I added the 4 corner air bags, I also installed the dash gauges and switches so that I could adjust the air pressure for the front or rear while I drove down the highway. That way as conditions changed, I could quicly adjust the air pressure. You can't adjust any other type of Sumo rubber bumpers or Timbrons.

wolfe10

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Posted: 10/08/18 03:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

STOP.

For ride quality issues, let's go "through it by the numbers".

1. Have you weighed each axle (corners better) and set tire pressure based on actual weight? Said another way, if your tire are over-inflated by 20 PSI, there is nothing you can do to make for a "smooth ride".

2. There are shocks that have the VAST majority of their dampening on extension (not on compression) so the ride is controlled, but ride is less harsh. Koni FSD shocks are an example.

I would start with those two before looking at air bags-- unless you have an axle that is at or over GVWR/ride height is below spec. If that is the case, indeed, start with a "lift" option, whether air bags, Sumo, etc.


Brett Wolfe
2003 Alpine 38'


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LVJ58

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Posted: 10/08/18 06:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Before installing air bags you might consider replacing your stock shocks with Koni FSD shocks. I replaced our front shocks with the Koni FSD's and it made a world of difference in improving our ride. The Koni's are rather expensive, but I found them to be well worth the $$$

Best of luck and safe travels...[emoticon]


Jim & Sherry Seward
Las Vegas, NV
2000 Residency 3790 V-10 w/tags & Banks System
2003 Suzuki XL/7 toad

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