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Old 05-17-2013, 04:12 PM   #1
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Tail Wag on 35 Ft Dutchstar Gasser

We have done 2 big trips in our 98 DutchStar and have experienced wind related issues from mother nature and big rigs passing. The large rear overhang results in tail wag that transmits up into the steering wheel. Also we have the a fair amount of body lean at times in corners. I am considering having some work done to the rear springs and also beefing up the front shocks before I go to a sway bar set up. Any suggestions from those who have had similar problems.
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Old 05-17-2013, 04:21 PM   #2
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Have you weighed the coach in travel mode and adjusted tire pressure accordingly. Check the tire load rating against the weights too , could be marginal.
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Old 05-17-2013, 05:33 PM   #3
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Not enough information. Very basic is what chassis do you have?
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:32 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dwight View Post
Not enough information. Very basic is what chassis do you have?
yup, what chassis??
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Old 05-18-2013, 02:30 AM   #5
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Welcome Wayne to the forum & irv2.
I had a 98 KS that was all over the road and very bad in cornering.
Checked the springs on the Ford F-53 and were arched downward, went to a good spring company and they added leaf springs all around which brought the coach up 3" level and had the coach realigned.
I added Blistien shocks would probably go with Koni's now and added a rear trac bar on rear end.
Had a Ford 99 MA but I installed AIR-LIFT bags instead for the same reasons.
With both coach's refitted made for a much improved handling coach with a straight track on the road and requires proper air inflation of your tires.
Adding this equipment does not change the load carrying capacity of coach original design.
We took the KS with a pop-up across Canada west, than back east thru the northern states for a great 8 week trip.
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Old 05-18-2013, 11:26 AM   #6
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The chassis is the F53 ford chassis. This year also runs on light truck tires 16.5 vs transport tires 22.5. I have weighed the rig particularly for our 3 month trip across Canada and was within limits. Tire pressures on the rear are 80 lbs and I run at 70/75 on the front. Lower pressures on the front helps. I flat tow a Geo Tracker with a brake buddy so tow is well within the limits for the coach.
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Old 05-18-2013, 11:52 AM   #7
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I recommend you install a Safe T Plus The Steering Control Specialists | Safe-T-Plus Blog | Helping motorists' vehicles steer safer, less, and with peace of mind. and Rear Track Bar to solve your steering problem.
While at the FMCA RV Rally in Indio in January, I had these installed on my RV and it made a world of difference.


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Old 05-26-2013, 01:05 PM   #8
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Thank you for the responses. Will take the rig into a local spring/suspension shop and have them look at the springs and front shocks as a first step.
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Old 05-26-2013, 05:34 PM   #9
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Before you do that, check the condition of the bushings on your rear sway bar. They notoriously melt down and go away. On my HR, literally they were black goo and one of the rear bars got disconnected. Replace with urethane (ebay) if they're not in good shape.

The next thing you should do is the "cheap handling fix" (search for it) - which involves attaching to the inside connections of the front sway bar which essentially "tightens" the front bar. Tow and camber should be set to factory spec. Castor changes as your rig ages (sags) and the less castor you have, the less stable your rig is.

3rd thing I'd do is have it alligned with proper castor. I'd buy castor adjusters (they're non-adjustable OEM) and get it set to the positive side of the factory adjustment range. If your rig has worn steering components, I'm assuming that they'll show up during alignment.

4th thing - a rear trac bar... About $500. This will take any rear axle shift out, but depends on you having proper alignment.

I'd wager that doing the above, most of which is reasonable cost will solve 95% of the problems on the F53. I'd do a safe-steer last... After the above. Otherwise it just masks problems that you don't have to have..
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Old 05-27-2013, 10:43 AM   #10
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Thanks cb1000rider. I am taking the rig in for servicing next week and will have then check the bushings on the rear sway. I had the wheel alignment checked before each of the trips and it was according to factory specs. The steering control arm is a Monroe and 2 yrs old but will have them check it in case the settings have changed. The rig only has 75K km/48K mi on the drive train and chassis but it had sat for a few years before I bought it from the original owners. Once again all good advice will follow up and report back.
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Old 05-28-2013, 07:38 AM   #11
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The Cheap Handling fix that was mentioned should be moved to the top of the list along with putting more air pressure in the tires. I run 95 psi all around to the tires don't flex from side to side. If you are driving out west in the spring with heavy winds you will still have a white knuckle ride no matter what you do. You should already have a trac bar in front so just add one in back to prevent side to side sway in the suspension. I got a dollar I will bet against a donut that if you inspect the bushings on the rear traction bar you will find they are gone or destroyed. Look up the blue poly bushings on ebay and do the job yourself for $50.
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Old 05-29-2013, 10:50 AM   #12
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Thanks all. The rig is going in on Tues for service at my Kal Tire service centre and will have them look at the rear sway bar, steering arm and shocks. Will be then taking it out to a spring and suspension shop for a look at the springs. Will report back.
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Old 09-26-2013, 11:14 AM   #13
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After multiple delays have finally gotten the RV in to WestCoast Spring in Victoria. They are going to be re tension the rear springs and add a leaf. In addition picked up the Moog bushing kit for the sway bars and the axle bushing kit on EBay. The rubber bushings on the sway bar were quite deteriorated. When I did a visual they looked fine but when I did a physical check they easily started to break apart. They will do all the work and hopefully this will help. Reasonably inexpensive fix if it works. Thanks to all of you for the input. Will have to wait for Feb/Mar to put the fix to the test.
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Old 09-26-2013, 06:08 PM   #14
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I think you will find a big difference when its done as far as wagging the dog if you have a long over hang you may need the torque bar on rear axel to chassis, call them for correct chassis year.
Try the coach before deciding.
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