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Old 10-22-2014, 03:32 PM   #1
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Another reason for Ride and Handling Problems

This thread over on the "general problems and discussions" forum may be of some interest for those experiencing handling problems with their motorhomes.

http://www.irv2.com/forums/f84/tail-...ml#post2280501

I've long contended handling problems can be attributed to the body builders as much or more than the chassis builders. One of the posts mentions a "tail swing chart" with the following information. If the wheel base meets or exceeds the following percentage of the overall length of the vehicle the handling characteristics fall within the following ranges.

Greater than 58% is "Excellent".

Greater than 54% is "Good".

Less than 50% is "Unsafe".
We're on our second Winnebago Adventurer on the F53 chassis and have had very few handling problems. Our original 2001 32V was 32' 11" long. It had a wheelbase of 208" which equals 52.6% of the overall length of the coach. We had to add a Roadmaster sway bar to minimize the effects of trucks passing us at high speeds. We put on over 100,000 miles without further additions or problems.

Last year we purchased a 2013 Adventurer 32H. It has an overall length of 33' 3", and a wheelbase of 228". The wheelbase on this one is 57.1% of the overall length of the vehicle. We now have over 17,000 miles on it and haven't had to make any modifications or additions to improve the ride or handling.

Just something to think about when you're looking for a new motorhome.
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Old 10-23-2014, 11:38 AM   #2
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Well my 2012 Outlaw is 448" long (37' 4") and the wheelbase is 242". 242 / 448 = 54% and my Outlaw drives great. Maybe there is something to this.

Just for an FYI, those with F53 chassis, move as much weight as you can towards the front as these F53s really handle better with more weight on the front. I pack all of my heavy items in the most forward compartments and the handling got much better. It drives like a big F150 now.
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Old 10-23-2014, 08:58 PM   #3
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Agree weight forward would help. Unfortunately only have one usable bin forward. Most of storage is in large basement at the very rear.
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Old 10-24-2014, 08:29 PM   #4
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What do you do if you have a 1300lb golf cart in the garage section? of the toy hauler
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Old 10-25-2014, 03:23 AM   #5
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Ok that adds weight to the rear, I pump up the air bags to support the extra weight. The weight on the front stays basically the same and my outlaw drives great. I have had my harley and golf cart in the back and barely notice a difference in handling. We drove from Maryland to Sturgis with that load last year and that trip convinced me that the air bags are worth the effort to install.
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Old 10-26-2014, 10:08 AM   #6
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54.4, Whew just made good!
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Old 10-27-2014, 10:19 PM   #7
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I don't know I am at 55.5% and after adding a trac-bar now the thing handles what I would call good, I might even go as far as saying great. Before the trac-bar it would be tossed around by the wind.
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Old 11-06-2014, 12:11 PM   #8
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Good day all. I have been reading the threads on handling problems/fixes including the 100+ page quick fix. Hikerdogs, thank you for putting in the % formula. I ran the numbers on my Precept and came in at 49%. 387" long & wb of 190. That is so right on. My handling is a classic example of what everyone seems to have happening with the "push" of approaching vehicles. I added a Safe-T-Plus steering stabilizer. That made some difference.........but did not change the "push" affect. I asked my Ford truck service dealer (service everything from small to large) about the "quick fix" and they said Ford does not recommend it and they will not do it. I can do that myself but I want to stay within guidelines as much as I can.
So, if I understand you all correctly, if I install a Roadmaster "REAR SWAY BAR" or ", "Trac-Bar" (same thing?) I should see a dramatic increase in driving comfort and safety.........right?
Thank you for helping me clarify. I just don't want to be throwing $$$ at it and not correct the problem.
Darrell
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Old 11-06-2014, 02:45 PM   #9
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The Roadmaster sway bar made a world of difference on our 2001 Adventurer. I can't speak for anyone else.
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Old 11-07-2014, 08:32 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dm.akafun View Post
So, if I understand you all correctly, if I install a Roadmaster "REAR SWAY BAR" or ", "Trac-Bar" (same thing?) I should see a dramatic increase in driving comfort and safety.........right?
Thank you for helping me clarify. I just don't want to be throwing $$$ at it and not correct the problem.
Darrell
NO they are not the same thing, sway bar is the torsion bar that controls body roll, the track bar will mount from the top of the axle to the frame to control movement inherent in leaf spring suspension, lateral movement of the body in relation to the axle. Likely already a sway bar on there, that is the bar being referred to in the CHF.
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Old 11-07-2014, 09:02 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dm.akafun View Post
Good day all. I have been reading the threads on handling problems/fixes including the 100+ page quick fix. Hikerdogs, thank you for putting in the % formula. I ran the numbers on my Precept and came in at 49%. 387" long & wb of 190. That is so right on. My handling is a classic example of what everyone seems to have happening with the "push" of approaching vehicles. I added a Safe-T-Plus steering stabilizer. That made some difference.........but did not change the "push" affect. I asked my Ford truck service dealer (service everything from small to large) about the "quick fix" and they said Ford does not recommend it and they will not do it. I can do that myself but I want to stay within guidelines as much as I can.
So, if I understand you all correctly, if I install a Roadmaster "REAR SWAY BAR" or ", "Trac-Bar" (same thing?) I should see a dramatic increase in driving comfort and safety.........right?
Thank you for helping me clarify. I just don't want to be throwing $$$ at it and not correct the problem.
Darrell
I should have read your post a little more thoroughly. As mentioned the Sway bar and the Track bar are totally different animals. As for the cheap handling fix, neither the front or rear sway bars on our 2001 Adventurer had the second set of holes, so it couldn't be done.

The Roadmaster Sway bar we added was a larger diameter than the original. As I recall the original sway bar was about 1 3/8" in diameter. The Roadmaster bar was about 1 3/4" in diameter. The original bar remains in place. The new one works in conjunction with the original.
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Old 11-07-2014, 12:39 PM   #12
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trode and Hikerdogs, thank you both. Those are the clarifications I needed. Yes, I have sway bars front and rear, factory installed. I will wait on the CHF. I am ordering a SuperSteer Trac Bar to correct the "push". From what has been reported, I have a real good chance of a very manageable/safe coach after that.
Again, thank you,
Darrell
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Old 11-07-2014, 01:39 PM   #13
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I thought about doing suspension mods when we first got the rig four years ago (used). Then I looked at the amount of work and cost involved and compared it to how many gallons of gas and CG fees were the equivalent.

We decided to live with the ride & handling of what is essentially an 11-ton box truck and just take it easy.
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Old 11-07-2014, 05:16 PM   #14
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I to have been thinking about adding a track bar to mine. It already has the steer stabilizer on front. An the air bag assist on suspension. Still playing with the pressure on the bags but its getting close.
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