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Old 05-29-2012, 12:14 AM   #1
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Shakedown update...

Well all that comes to mind is.. LOVE'n IT!! After a few minor SNAFU's we were off with our new 2012 AF 992S for our shakedown. Ok, I know we're pushing the limits and realistically over the spec'd rating for our truck. However the setup worked flawlessly! The truck easily pulls the weight effortlessly even up some of the long grades heading to Yosimite. As everyone knows the brakes are marginal but using a lower gear and basic good driving techniques no real issues going down hill either. With the suspension mods I've previously done I could have probably gotten away with not adding the airbags but put them on anyway. Ran them with about 50 psi and seemed to work well. Did have a slight roll on the twisties but not enough to be concerned about or at no time did it feel unsafe. I would attribute that more to sidewall roll on the tires than suspension.

Now for the AF 992... Granted, it was a bit pricey but for the most part it seems to be built relatively sturdy. I like the solid wood doors on all the cabinet and things are laid out nicely... For the price I would have liked a bit more attention to the fit and finish but overall it's not too bad. Nothing I can't tweak myself overtime. Oh.. One of the first things I did after the jacks hit the ground was start peeling off (IMO) the awful graphics.... I can say it looks much better with her cleaned up a bit.

All systems were excersized and operated as advertised. One of the foreseeable problem areas is the kitchen sink material.... I can see it getting scratched very easily even under careful normal usage. I would have preferred seeing something a bit more utilitarian rather than the new fancy polymer that was used. Again, something at is easily replaced if needed at a later date.

At 6'4" 275 lbs it was important I had some elbow room. I can say I'm very pleased with the space in most of the TC. Where it is a bit shy in headroom is the shower.... But luckily it has a bubble skylight which adds a few more inches to the shower. I can only imagine what it looks like from the outside...hahaha.

Well there you have it... Just a quick few words about our first impressions of our new AF 992s.

Look forward to planning our next getaway!

Dino
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:28 AM   #2
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Dino, (I have a cousin called Dino)anyway, I'm glad your rig meets your expectations. You can reduce sidewall roll by keeping your tires inflated to sidewall maximum. To further reduce this you might consider upgrading to the next higher load range tires on the truck and doing the same.
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Old 05-30-2012, 06:55 PM   #3
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Thanks for the update, I've been running my AF for 7 yrs now, all systems still 100%. After using your new TC, you'll find ways to make mods that improve things. Unfortunately, you'll learn that your air bags actually increase sway, consider making a mod that has your overload springs engage earlier (assuming you have them) to stiffen the rear under load. Good luck.
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Old 05-31-2012, 06:30 PM   #4
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I just orderd the Torklift "Stable Load' overload spacers. I can see where this setup would certainly help with lateral stability.

Question: I've see folks install struts/dampeners that attach from the overhang to the front fenders. Can someone tell me what purpose they serve? Since the bed can flex in opposite directions from the cab I would think that would put unwanted loads to the overhang as well as the fenders not to mention putting added stress to the tie down points. Any thoughts or comments?
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Old 05-31-2012, 07:48 PM   #5
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Cabover struts are sold by Lance. I have a set that I installed for when I had an 11.5 Lance TC. They really work well to smooth out the TC movement of the cabover vs. bed/frame flex. As they just dampen movement, I don't think there is much stress on the TC or truck, they have alot of travel. Very high quality alum, SS, and brass. I never re-installed them on my AF. For the high price tag $$, I don't feel there is that much reward.
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Old 06-01-2012, 11:48 AM   #6
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I won't say SNAFU's are common.....

But the Wi-Fi network for my motor home is SNAFU.NET
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Old 06-18-2012, 01:27 AM   #7
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The AF camper adds a high COG maximum load to the bed. Air bags help with leveling the campers side to side if one side is a lot heavier but they are not going to help with sway. Items that will help are Rancho 9000XL shocks, helper springs like the SuperSprings, and lastly a thicker rear anti-sway bar. I would be that your shocks are not doing a great job both due to design and age.
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Old 07-20-2012, 01:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vintagercr View Post
I just orderd the Torklift "Stable Load' overload spacers. I can see where this setup would certainly help with lateral stability.

Question: I've see folks install struts/dampeners that attach from the overhang to the front fenders. Can someone tell me what purpose they serve? Since the bed can flex in opposite directions from the cab I would think that would put unwanted loads to the overhang as well as the fenders not to mention putting added stress to the tie down points. Any thoughts or comments?
That is an effort to stabilize the camper and not stabilize the truck, which IMO is the wrong approach.

If you stabilize the truck the TC will fall in line with regular tie downs.

Rancho RS 9000XL shocks + sway bar on rear + stable loads = a stable truck. Now tie downs that are firm but not locked down to the point that you are ripping out the attachment points. I have my TC setting on a .75 rubber mat like used in horse trailers. You want the TC to have some movement so it can absorb travel forces.

Tiedowns should be at approx a 45 degree angle forward and to the rear of the attachment points on the TC to truck connection.
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Old 08-12-2012, 10:27 AM   #9
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If you are running a single air fill point for both air bags. Change it. make them both have their own fill point. Air bags that are setup correctly will not increase sway.
If you tie two balloons together with a common air passage, push on one balloon, the other will get the air transfer. Airbags when cornering work the same way.
If the air has no place to go! you will not sway on corners.
If you were towing a trailer, a single point fill is fine. But not for top load of a camper.
Most air bag systems use a common truck air brake line setup. Easy to purchase at a store that sells truck and trailer parts.
I have used the "Airlift" brand a few times on company trucks that I halled extremely heavy loads in the bed of pickups and flatbeds.
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Old 11-13-2012, 09:32 AM   #10
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Great write up. Any further thoughts since you first posted this? I'm looking at the AF992 or a Lance, (still deciding which model) and either a F350 or 3500 SRW 4X4, SRW,CC. Real world experiences like these help much in the decision making process.
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