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Old 06-04-2023, 10:54 PM   #1
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Canít put lipstick on a pig. Or can you? F53 chassis

I have a 2020 Fleetwood Flair class A with the 16k f53 chassis. The problem is the ride is punishing on all but newly paved roads. Iíve recently replaced all Four shocks with Koni, installed a Supersteer front stabilizer, sumo springs on the front, Roadmaster Trac Bar on the rear axle. I donít have any issues with lean or trucks passing. My issue is the pounding I receive going over road joints, pot holes etcÖ. I wonder if my tire pressure is too high. I am running Goodyear G670 tires with load range G. Size is 245/70/19.5. They only have 7k miles. The chassis sticker says run the tires at 82 psi. Iíve had the coach weighed and it was 6,200 lbs in the front and 9,360 in the rear. The coach manual starts at 3,640 lbs at 80 psi and 6,840 for the rears. If I take my front scale weight of 6,200 then my load is 3,100 per front tire. The manual does not go that low and starts at 3,640 at 80 psi. Can I run my pressure lower and if so, how low can I go? Iíve not had any luck with Goodyear tech support. Are Michelins or other brands a better ride choice? Looking for help as I donít know if we can keep the coach. The ride is that bad. Thanks in advance!
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Old 06-05-2023, 06:36 AM   #2
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Here's a link to the inflation chart for Goodyear RV tires. G670's are the third group.

https://www.goodyearrvtires.com/pdfs/rv_inflation.pdf
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Old 06-05-2023, 07:29 AM   #3
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I have a similar Coach ( Koni's and Sumo all way around) ...Changing tires seem like the best route to go (Toyo)...here's a link discussing brands:
https://www.irv2.com/forums/f106/tir...on-612786.html

I'm getting too old to make my rig complicated, but I looked into Air bags vs Sumo for the front...may want to look at air bags with their adjustability in air pressure to get the ride you desire ( most big trucks and DP use a air ride suspension system) hth
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Old 06-05-2023, 09:15 AM   #4
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I have a similar Coach ( Koni's and Sumo all way around) ...Changing tires seem like the best route to go (Toyo)...here's a link discussing brands:
https://www.irv2.com/forums/f106/tir...on-612786.html

I'm getting too old to make my rig complicated, but I looked into Air bags vs Sumo for the front...may want to look at air bags with their adjustability in air pressure to get the ride you desire ( most big trucks and DP use a air ride suspension system) hth
On my 1999 18k I have Michelin and run 80lbs all around excellent ride.Click image for larger version

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Old 06-05-2023, 09:29 AM   #5
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Graydude, I feel your pain. It sounds like you've already researched and done quite a bit to improve the ride of your coach. Unfortunately, it's still a truck on a leaf spring suspension design that's more than 50 years old. I've done much of the same as you have to my own rig, with decent success in handling but only marginal success in the ride. At this point the next step would be to consider dropping $25k on a Liquid Springs suspension -- something that I won't do, as I'd rather spend the money traveling.

I'd recommend NOT lowering your tire pressure to attempt to soften the ride. Based on your scale weight, it looks like you are already pushing close to the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) max rating for your chassis. So 82 psi should be your minimum tire pressure. If you lower the tire pressure, you are likely to increase the tire's operating temperature, sidewall deformation, and tire wear, while reducing handling characteristics.
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Old 06-05-2023, 08:54 PM   #6
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Graydude, I feel your pain. It sounds like you've already researched and done quite a bit to improve the ride of your coach. Unfortunately, it's still a truck on a leaf spring suspension design that's more than 50 years old. I've done much of the same as you have to my own rig, with decent success in handling but only marginal success in the ride. At this point the next step would be to consider dropping $25k on a Liquid Springs suspension -- something that I won't do, as I'd rather spend the money traveling.

I'd recommend NOT lowering your tire pressure to attempt to soften the ride. Based on your scale weight, it looks like you are already pushing close to the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) max rating for your chassis. So 82 psi should be your minimum tire pressure. If you lower the tire pressure, you are likely to increase the tire's operating temperature, sidewall deformation, and tire wear, while reducing handling characteristics.

Thanks for the input. Iím with you and not going to invest $20k plus for liquid springs. Are you running the Goodyear G670s? I think my next move will be to put Sumos on the back and try a pair of Michelins on the steer axle. Toyo seems to get good comments but Iíve never owned a set.
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Old 06-05-2023, 08:58 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Graydude View Post
I have a 2020 Fleetwood Flair class A with the 16k f53 chassis. The problem is the ride is punishing on all but newly paved roads. Iíve recently replaced all Four shocks with Koni, installed a Supersteer front stabilizer, sumo springs on the front, Roadmaster Trac Bar on the rear axle. I donít have any issues with lean or trucks passing. My issue is the pounding I receive going over road joints, pot holes etcÖ. I wonder if my tire pressure is too high. I am running Goodyear G670 tires with load range G. Size is 245/70/19.5. They only have 7k miles. The chassis sticker says run the tires at 82 psi. Iíve had the coach weighed and it was 6,200 lbs in the front and 9,360 in the rear. The coach manual starts at 3,640 lbs at 80 psi and 6,840 for the rears. If I take my front scale weight of 6,200 then my load is 3,100 per front tire. The manual does not go that low and starts at 3,640 at 80 psi. Can I run my pressure lower and if so, how low can I go? Iíve not had any luck with Goodyear tech support. Are Michelins or other brands a better ride choice? Looking for help as I donít know if we can keep the coach. The ride is that bad. Thanks in advance!
I will try to let you know if air bags solve this problem pretty soon. I am having Kelderman air suspension installed on my MH this week, so next week I should know if it works. The pounding and banging on my wife's backbone and neck is our only problem also. Hopefully we will come back with a thrilling testimony.
Thanks,
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Old 06-06-2023, 05:43 PM   #8
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Personally Sumo's are the worse thing you could probably do for hard hits. They work great for sway, but you say that isn't a problem. The sumo's are touching at ride height and while they are probably a little more progressive than the springs flexing until they hit a hard bump stop, they are not going to lessen the hard hits
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Old 06-09-2023, 02:09 PM   #9
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This may sound obvious but confirm that the rear Koni shocks are installed correctly, mine were installed upside down by the shop. I discovered this after about 8000 punishing miles on a cross country trip. You should be able to read the writing on the shock and the chrome exposed shaft should be pointing upwards.
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Old 06-19-2023, 01:25 PM   #10
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I did the same to my rig as you did but have Sumo's and Michelins all around and still have the same problem with the jarring ride.
As you mentioned, you don't want to spend too much on lipstick and on the flipside, we have a chassis that's well aged, reliable and easy to repair.
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Old 06-29-2023, 01:24 PM   #11
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Reporting Back after Installation

Quote:
Originally Posted by High Road Travelers View Post
I will try to let you know if air bags solve this problem pretty soon. I am having Kelderman air suspension installed on my MH this week, so next week I should know if it works. The pounding and banging on my wife's backbone and neck is our only problem also. Hopefully we will come back with a thrilling testimony.
Thanks,
I did have the Kelderman air suspension installed front and rear on my F53 and actually am not as pleased as I thought I would be. I do get better handling and a smoother ride, especially on medium rough roads. On pot holes, very rough roads and bad expansion joints I still get a harsh banging ride; however it is not as harsh and bad as it used to be. I wish I had it installed when purchased new instead of 36,000 miles later.
Mine is installed with a compressor, air tank and dryer and is automatically controlled. When camped I can dump the air from the bags and the coach lowers about 3 inches, making leveling with the jacks a little better; however Kelderman recommends just to keep it aired up and don't dump unless necessary - as it will put more wear on the compressor and bags. I was really looking forward to this feature until they told me it was not recommended to dump unless really off level and it's necessary.
We will really give it a test later this summer on a long trip. It was not a "night and day" difference for me, but it is better.
Thanks,
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Old 06-29-2023, 01:38 PM   #12
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I did have the Kelderman air suspension installed front and rear on my F53 and actually am not as pleased as I thought I would be. I do get better handling and a smoother ride, especially on medium rough roads. On pot holes, very rough roads and bad expansion joints I still get a harsh banging ride; however it is not as harsh and bad as it used to be. I wish I had it installed when purchased new instead of 36,000 miles later.
Mine is installed with a compressor, air tank and dryer and is automatically controlled. When camped I can dump the air from the bags and the coach lowers about 3 inches, making leveling with the jacks a little better; however Kelderman recommends just to keep it aired up and don't dump unless necessary - as it will put more wear on the compressor and bags. I was really looking forward to this feature until they told me it was not recommended to dump unless really off level and it's necessary.
We will really give it a test later this summer on a long trip. It was not a "night and day" difference for me, but it is better.
Thanks,

Thank you for the feedback. Iíve been interested in the outcome. What was the approximate cost of the system if you donít mind?
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Old 06-29-2023, 01:49 PM   #13
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Thank you for the feedback. Iíve been interested in the outcome. What was the approximate cost of the system if you donít mind?
The total cost is about $13K, roughly $8K for the equipment from Kelderman, three days of install labor, $300 shipping and sales tax. Mine was installed in Louisiana and labor is taxable also.
Tech RV LLC in Maurice, LA did the install and I would recommend them. They are also a Vroom slide installer.
Thanks,
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Old 06-29-2023, 01:57 PM   #14
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Here are your issues
1. Short wheelbase
2. Light RV
3. Tire pressures should be at the correct weight of your 4 corners and the Goodyear chart

Most important of the three is your wheelbase.
I doubt spending 20,000 on liquid springs would help.

My worse riding RV was my 1999 Fleetwood Storm 30H.
As I got bigger and heavier it was much better.
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