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Old 03-15-2014, 11:48 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whem2fish View Post
Can you tell me what size wrenches I need for this job I'm going to do it for Kent?
I'd suggest you lay out pairs of 14mm - 19mm, that should cover it. I don't remember which I used, but pretty sure it was in that range.
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Old 03-15-2014, 12:12 PM   #16
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Koni's probably have the best reputation, if you don't mind all the extra bucks. Our coach is not so particular and as long as it doesn't continue with an initial bounce, I'm happy.
Running Bilsteins at present and were on sale at the time in 07. Also have nothing to compare them with, except the OEM's and they were an improvement with the originals worn out for the most part.
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Old 03-15-2014, 01:11 PM   #17
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thanks
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Old 03-15-2014, 11:15 PM   #18
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FYI, if you don't have them attached are the suspension torque spec's for a 99 F53. They should be the same for the PO's chassis.

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1999 35 ft. Dolphin 5350,F53 Chassis Chassis build date 1/99, Banks System, 5 Stars Tune, Air Lift Air Bags front & rear, Koni Shocks,Blue OX TruCenter,TigerTrak track bars front & rear, Roadmaster 1-3/4" rear auxiliary sway bar,2004 F450 Lariat 6.0 Diesel Crew Cab DRW with B & W Custom Truck Bed, 1994 36 ft. Avion 5th Wheel
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Old 03-15-2014, 11:17 PM   #19
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Could attach this to my first post.

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1999 35 ft. Dolphin 5350,F53 Chassis Chassis build date 1/99, Banks System, 5 Stars Tune, Air Lift Air Bags front & rear, Koni Shocks,Blue OX TruCenter,TigerTrak track bars front & rear, Roadmaster 1-3/4" rear auxiliary sway bar,2004 F450 Lariat 6.0 Diesel Crew Cab DRW with B & W Custom Truck Bed, 1994 36 ft. Avion 5th Wheel
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Old 03-16-2014, 03:59 PM   #20
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Put Koni FDS shocks on late last year. Made a considerable better ride and steers much better. Worth the extra money.
The nut & bolt were 1 1/8". Had to use a 3/4 pneumatic wrench to change the shocks.
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Old 03-16-2014, 04:09 PM   #21
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Neuman, were you old shocks Bilstein?
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Old 03-16-2014, 04:33 PM   #22
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By the way, both Bilstein and Koni have a life time warranty for defective shocks for the "original" purchaser. Bilstein requires a sales receipt not sure on Koni.
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Old 03-16-2014, 05:00 PM   #23
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I have a 2005 40' diesel pusher with 36,000 lbs gvw. (Spartan Chassis) that came with Bilstien shocks. They were not wore out but I replaced them with Koni shocks and it was like night and day difference; better coach control and easier driving. But the big thing was how much better they handled the rougher highways. For example, the transitions from road-to-bridge-to-road can be rough and with Bilstiens I would have a bang that rattled cabinets. With Koni's it is a "blrrrup". Koni's are more expensive. Maybe Bilstiens have improved but there was no comparison between my new Konis and the 2005 Bilstiens from the time they were new until I replaced them.
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Old 03-17-2014, 09:42 AM   #24
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My old shocks were Bilstein's. They were still good.
By the way I only changed the front shocks to Koni's.
Maybe later this year I'll do the rears if I feel they would need a change.
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Old 03-17-2014, 06:51 PM   #25
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Thanks guys , your advice and experiences has given me the knowledge to make a choice of new shocks for my newly purchased Itasca 35. Bilstein shocks are my pick.
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Old 03-18-2014, 09:52 AM   #26
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Yes, thanks for all the input!

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Old 03-18-2014, 11:21 AM   #27
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You mentioned sway as an area you want improvement on too.

A few suggestions on F53 handling in general, all based upon a small 18K chassis with the first year of the V10 (99 chassis, in a 98 Bounder):

> Change over bushings fittings to urethane

> If not equipped when sold by the mfg (not Ford, the mfg spec's the stuff they want on the F53 chassis when they buy it), add a rear pan hard bar

> Beef up sway bars. Some F53's allow a second sway bar to augment the rear.

> Use Koni Adjustable SP3, set on 3 or 4 position, on the rear. Use Koni FSD's on the front. (FSD's 'control' during the 'rebound' not from the 'impact', so are just a bit better over the expansion joints and other nice things on our highways. Most F53's are way under weight on the front suspension, so a harsher ride is felt.)

> If not yet done, get a ready to travel four corner weight, and adjust PSI to the tire mfg recommended setting, +5 PSI (because that is what I always do, so it must be a good idea!). (Amazing the improvement in handling and ride, by the simple proper setting of tire PSI... and it is free.)

$.02 on my thoughts, and keep the change!

Good luck on whatever you end up doing, have fun, be safe,
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Old 03-18-2014, 12:25 PM   #28
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I just ordered two Koni's for the front on my F53 from here Autoplicity.com Best price I have seen with free shipping. They also have the 8805-1019 (rear ones) for the same price, just have to search the site. Koni shows on their web site they fit the 99-14 F53 chassis's. The picture on the web site is incorrect, P/N is correct. Going to replace the Bilstein's on front that have less then 10k on them. Got the web site from another member on the CHF discussion.

Chuck
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