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Old 12-16-2014, 11:45 AM   #1
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LEAF SPRING vs TORSION SUSPENSIONS

Interesting comparison of the two main suspension types!


Leaf Springs vs. Torsion
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Old 12-16-2014, 12:58 PM   #2
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I have a trailer with two 7k torsion axles and I hate 'em. When running empty it abouts beats you to death in the truck. I can only imagine what they're like on a TT or 5er.

Biggest thing I see with them is the inability to equalize the load between multiple axles. I shake my head at seeing how many people are pulling torsion axle equipped trailers and have not set their hitch up to have the trailer anywhere near level and have one axle carrying the load and the other barely skating on the ground.

My trailer only has them because they're about all that would work in that application for height and clearance issues. I won't have any more unless there's no other feasible option.
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Old 12-16-2014, 05:17 PM   #3
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Well, very few TTs or fivers run 'empty' so there is plenty of weight to work the torsion arms. Do you have the MorRyde IS, or some other brand? Most people who have the torsion type really like them, especially if they changed from springs to torsion. I would have them in a heartbeat if buying new.
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Old 12-16-2014, 05:54 PM   #4
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We had 2 different Forest River trailers with torsion axles under them and very rarely felt any bouncing jumping or other suspension related issues. Both units towed great even on rough roads.
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Old 12-17-2014, 03:28 PM   #5
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Another issue with torsion axles is they are expensive if they need to be replaced. You can expect a usable life of minimum 10 years. Also, You probably will not be able to find an "off the shelf" axle and you will need the same axle that originally came with the trailer. torsion axle specs include: frame center, track length, weight rating, trailing arm angle. The trailing arm affects the position of the wheel and therefore the fender position would be moved toward the rear compared to a similar model trailer with leaf spring suspension. The big advantage of torsion axles is on boat trailers, since leaf springs tend to corrode quickly.

Leaf spring suspension parts are easy to find and not too expensive.
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Old 12-21-2014, 10:13 AM   #6
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My 7x14 cargo trailer came with Dexter TorFlex suspension, and I love it. With the TorFlex suspension, there is no need for additional shock absorbers because the shock absorption is built into the torsion axle.

My TT came with leaf springs, but no shocks. I added shocks and now get decent tire wear and the trailer tows so good I have to double-check the tow mirrors to be sure it's back there. Maybe the ProPride hitch helps? But my cargo trailer with TorFlex axles and Reese Strait-Line hitch tows just as good as the TT with leaf springs, shocks, and the ProPride hitch. So I suspect proper setup and loading is as important as the hitch, until you get to one of those rare combination of conditions that will overcome the Strait-Line but not phase the ProPride.

Early in December, 2014, I ruined a trailer tire just as I was hooking up for a long trip. Darned mesquite throns punctured the sidewall! I mounted an old 205/75R15 tire/wheel on one TT hub and have 205/75R14 tires on the other three corners. I drove it 1,350 miles like that, from west Texas to Charleston SC with no problems, until I could stop near a big town with a tire store that had Towmax ST215/75R14C tires in stock. I replaced all 4 tires on the ground with the new tires, and put that old 15" tire/wheel on the spare. Now that I'm home again, I ordered a fifth Towmax ST215/75R14C for the spare.

Don't bad mouth Goodyear Marathon trailer tires. That old tire/wheel I found in the barn was an OEM take-off from my 2000 Keystone Sprinter 25RK fifth wheel that I replaced with ST225/75R15D tires over 13 years ago. No tire problems on the 5er since then. I expected that 14-year-old Marathon to blow out within a few miles of home, but it made it all the way to Charleston without a bobble, cruising at 69 MPH all the way. I checked tire temp with a laser temp gun every stop, and it never got over 100 - same as the three 2-year-old 14" Marathons on the trailer. Needless to say, I was surprised.
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Old 12-21-2014, 03:50 PM   #7
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The link provided by the OP is for torsion suspension on small trailers. It has little to do with a system like the Mor/Ryde Independent Suspension.
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