RV Trip Planning Discussions

Go Back   iRV2 Forums > THE CHASSIS CLUB FORUMS > Ford Motorhome Chassis Forum
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
  This discussion is proudly sponsored by:
Please support our sponsors and let them know you heard about their products on iRV2
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 01-23-2020, 10:30 AM   #1
Senior Member
 
c92vette's Avatar
 
Fleetwood Owners Club
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 392
What Did You Do To Improve Handling

I've read and read a lot of the threads concerning handling of the F53 chassis. The differences from the late 90's to today's chassis are subtle in scope but there are differences. I see a lot of add ons and expense to very few changes along with a lot of thoughts and ideas. The CHF seems to be the overall change made by most but there are several variations to it. What I'm curious about is how far beyond the CHF have owners gone to become happy with the handling of their coach. Here's what I have done. How bout you?

My chassis handling mods:
CHF
- Poly bushings - Replaced the rubber ones.
- Hellwig adjustable links added to reduce the tension load on the links.
Tires
- Inflation - found the correct pressure (5 psi over suggested)
- Quality - Changed from Badyears (Goodyear) to Toyos.
Loading
- Full Water Tank - 500 to 600 pounds spread across the center line of the vehicle.
- Low loading - Load all heavy items in the basement or lower cabinets.
Human Factors
- Raised the seat 3" - Improves physical exertion and response to conditions.
- Steering Wheel - Tilt adjusted for best comfort and visibility.
- Arm Rests - used for upper body support by resting elbows on them.
Summary - We had all the issues with rocking, rolling, and sway. Semis and wind posed challenges that would send most owners to sell the unit and stay home. Rough roads threw us all over. Came across the CHF and made the changes. Bought the Hellwig adjustable links and test drove our unit. Big improvement but after installing the poly bushings I really noted the difference. Because of unrelated tire issues changed the crappy badyears for Toyos. Tire shop inflated them to 110 psi. Handling was great, ride rough. Lowered the pressures by 5 psi each leg of our trip all the way down to 80 psi (lowest pressure per Toyo pressure chart). Found the sweet spot at 90 psi cold. Handling degraded exponentially below 90. Is marginal at 90 until the tires warm up after 5 or so miles. Then the coach settles in and rides nice.
Still had issues in high wind but road issues disappeared for the most part. Real bad roads are just that, really bad. Nothing handles well over ruts and pot holes. Applied my knowledge of aircraft to the loading and kept most everything low except for light items. This lowers the inertia effect when the force of the wind pushes the coach. The coach drove well but I still was tired and I needed a break every hour or so. That's when I raised the seat so I could sit up over the steering wheel. Physical exertion improved and the coach became a joy to drive.
__________________

__________________
Steve n' Tammy with Ella Mae the "Shippet" in a 2003 Fleetwood Bounder 32' on a Ford F53 Chassis and a V-10 gasser pulling a 2020 Pacifica on a EZE Tow Dolly
c92vette is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 01-23-2020, 12:20 PM   #2
Senior Member - DIYer
 
Waiter21's Avatar


 
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: NW Ohio
Posts: 6,506
CHF
Extended front links by 3 inches, extended rear links by 1 inch

SHOCKS
Replaced all 4 shocks, they were worn out

ALIGNMENT
Set toe in to max. would like to add 1 or two degrees to caster

REAR TRACK BAR
Homemade rear track bar
__________________

__________________
1999 Fleetwood Southwind 35S (Ford F53 6.8L V10 275hp 4R100 4 spd trans) - Toad 2003 Saturn Vue.
(www.1999Southwind.com)

It won't do MACH 2, but I can get a sandwich and take a pee.
Waiter21 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2020, 09:15 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Reacher's Avatar
 
Tiffin Owners Club
Join Date: Apr 2019
Posts: 560
I loaded the rig for a normal trip. Including full tanks. First stop was a travel center for full fuel and cat scale. After first night of camping the very next morning I adjusted cold tire pressure to the tire manufacturer's recommendation and shifted some cargo front to rear just ahead of rear axle. That was all. The coach handles great. This after owning a FL chassis DP with air suspension.
__________________
2019 Open Road 34PA
2016 Ford C-Max Energi Toad
Reacher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2020, 01:16 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 207
Tires are new Toyos.

Replaced front sway bar with the biggest Roadmaster unit I could find.

Replaced rear sway rubber bushings with polyurethane.

Added rear sway bar for the next size longer motorhome than mine (for only like $50.00 more).

Added rear track bar.

Found good tire pressure at 82PSI (dealer had them all at 123PSI cold).

Night and day difference in handling.

Next: Good alignment, add some caster.
CathedralCub is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2020, 09:45 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 3,768
NONE. It rides and handles just fine from the factory. Don't even have to fill the water tank. Maybe we just got lucky, but we have nearly 50,000 miles on with no complaints.
__________________
Hikerdogs
2013 Adventurer 32H
Hikerdogs is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2020, 09:47 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Sedona, AZ
Posts: 2,079
Done none of the above and happy.
__________________
Shell Bleiweiss
2014 1/2 Thor Challenger 37KT
Sedona, AZ
sbleiweiss is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2020, 12:01 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 143
Every one of the Ford Chassis and Motorhome body combinations has some similar; but, mostly different and unique handling and ride characteristics. I previously owned a 2007 (2006 F53 20,500 lb GVWR chassis) Itasca Sunstar 32K. Tracking was exceptionally stable, push from passing trucks was very predictable, easily controlled and ride acceptable. I never experienced any extreme sway or porposing. Fast forward to my current 2019 Tiffin Open Road 34PA on the F53 26,000 lb GVWR chassis with Sumo Springs. Does not track very well, fair amount of body roll, and sometimes extreme porposing at roadway to bridge transitions. I am taking corrective steps one at a time. First I set tire pressures based on axle ratings with little noticeable affect. Next I changed to single Koni FSD shocks all around. Was surprised at how much this improved the ride (porposing greatly reduced) and and even some reduction in body roll. Coach actually feels somewhat planted to the road. I next did a front end alignment. Caster was OK at the upper end of the Ford specs; but toe was significantly out and that was corrected. Tracking improved a bit; but, still prone to wandering on smooth roads with no wind. Next step will be the CHF front and rear (using TeeJay's plates) and finally am considering the rear track bar from Ultra RV. I also installed the Safe-T-Plus when I installed the Konis. Aside from the safety aspect, the benefit of the Safe-T-Plus is the return-to-center assist provided to the driver. I think this helps in keeping the driver from over correcting as the coach wanders. I really don't think it does anything to reduce the wandering. JMHO and YMMV.
W.J. Demo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2020, 01:34 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Russ Silber's Avatar
 
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Space Coast Fl
Posts: 1,723
Quote:
Originally Posted by W.J. Demo View Post
Every one of the Ford Chassis and Motorhome body combinations has some similar; but, mostly different and unique handling and ride characteristics. I previously owned a 2007 (2006 F53 20,500 lb GVWR chassis) Itasca Sunstar 32K. Tracking was exceptionally stable, push from passing trucks was very predictable, easily controlled and ride acceptable. I never experienced any extreme sway or porposing. Fast forward to my current 2019 Tiffin Open Road 34PA on the F53 26,000 lb GVWR chassis with Sumo Springs. Does not track very well, fair amount of body roll, and sometimes extreme porposing at roadway to bridge transitions. I am taking corrective steps one at a time. First I set tire pressures based on axle ratings with little noticeable affect. Next I changed to single Koni FSD shocks all around. Was surprised at how much this improved the ride (porposing greatly reduced) and and even some reduction in body roll. Coach actually feels somewhat planted to the road. I next did a front end alignment. Caster was OK at the upper end of the Ford specs; but toe was significantly out and that was corrected. Tracking improved a bit; but, still prone to wandering on smooth roads with no wind. Next step will be the CHF front and rear (using TeeJay's plates) and finally am considering the rear track bar from Ultra RV. I also installed the Safe-T-Plus when I installed the Konis. Aside from the safety aspect, the benefit of the Safe-T-Plus is the return-to-center assist provided to the driver. I think this helps in keeping the driver from over correcting as the coach wanders. I really don't think it does anything to reduce the wandering. JMHO and YMMV.
Our 1999 F53 Dutchstar rides great only added steering centering. Can't figure out what all the fuss is. On level road you can let go of the wheel anf it will tract straight until you turn the wheel. Doesn't move when tt pass slight corrrection on high crown roads or strong cross winds. Has heavy sway bars fron and rear. Run M tires at 82 lbs all around. Even wear on all. All run at same temp. Usually run at 65 towing crv. Average about 6.5 with gen running without crv average 7.6von 350 mile trip.
Russ Silber is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2020, 04:12 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 207
Quote:
Originally Posted by W.J. Demo View Post
Next I changed to single Koni FSD shocks all around. Was surprised at how much this improved the ride (porposing greatly reduced) and and even some reduction in body roll. Coach actually feels somewhat planted to the road.
Good to know about the Konis. The ones on it now are fairly recent according to the records, but they have no manufacturer info on them (therefore are probably cheapos) and I could stand for it to handle better if available.
CathedralCub is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2020, 04:19 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 207
Quote:
Originally Posted by Russ Silber View Post
Our 1999 F53 Dutchstar rides great only added steering centering. Can't figure out what all the fuss is. On level road you can let go of the wheel anf it will tract straight until you turn the wheel. Doesn't move when tt pass slight corrrection on high crown roads or strong cross winds. Has heavy sway bars fron and rear. Run M tires at 82 lbs all around. Even wear on all. All run at same temp. Usually run at 65 towing crv. Average about 6.5 with gen running without crv average 7.6von 350 mile trip.
Big sway bars really helped mine. If yours came with them, that's probably why yours handles so well. Now that I have mine straightened out it drives like you describe.
CathedralCub is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-25-2020, 09:45 AM   #11
Senior Member
 
JpalmerCass's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Comancheria
Posts: 305
In the first place I bought the coach with the longest wheelbase for its length--228" compared to some with 208" on the same length. And factory installed Sumos, for what that's worth. Anyway I think going with the longer wheelbase probably helped because I don't have the handling problems commonly expressed. Knowing the weight of the loaded coach and inflating the tires properly for the weight might be helping.

Now the ride, that's a different story. But the handling and steering are fine.
__________________
2016 Tiffin 32SA 24K chassis
2019 2WD Ford Explorer toad
JpalmerCass is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-27-2020, 12:20 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Posts: 372
2018 Winnebago Vista 32YE. It was dangerous to drive as it came from the factory.

1) Added Rear anti-sway bar from Roadmaster and Safe-T-Plus. This made it drivable but still too much push from trucks and the tracking still had a little wander to it.

2) Got a front end alignment at a good truck chassis shop. Now tracks straight as an arrow. Much bigger improvement than the Safe-T-Plus. Still more truck push than I like.

3) Performed CHF using Tejay's plates on the front. Set plates to CHF+1. Now the RV only gets pushed by a truck on rare occasions.

4) Experienced some very strong winds (gusting to 50) traveling across the US last spring. Filling the water tank made a big difference in the way the RV handled the winds.

All of this is on top of evenly distributing weight and keeping as much weight as low as possible.
blueridge-fl is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-28-2020, 07:41 PM   #13
Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Posts: 84
1) CHF on front- better
2) CHF on rear - little better
3)full water tank
4 added front adjustable links- ride less harsh
5)rear track bar -trucks don't bother me
6)moved all can goods and heavy pots and pans to bays.
Almost rides like a sports car. Would be better if DW hadn't voted against number 6
__________________
2013 Newmar Baystar 2901/ 2011 Ford Fiesta 5 speed
Tegu is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-30-2020, 10:10 PM   #14
Senior Member
 
House Husband's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Posts: 271
I drive what some consider a worst case scenario. 1995 F53, 33' long, 190" wheelbase, 13' rear overhang.

Added front panhard bar and set toe to 5/32 toe-in. No rags for tires, Michelin XPS all steel cord tires. It drives well. Responds to 1/2" steering wheel input. No sawing of the wheel. All is good.

I spent some of my younger years in a front end shop and am very fussy about the way a vehicle handles.

Richard
__________________

__________________
95 Bounder 32H F53
460/528 Stroker Engine
House Husband is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Did you over improve your coach? MWeiner Class B Motorhome Discussions 6 10-13-2019 02:45 PM
Improve handling on a new HR ? Do now or wait? marjoa Class A Motorhome Discussions 4 08-22-2016 10:47 AM
How to improve a 14 F53 ride and handling Cadillac Bob Ford Motorhome Chassis Forum 60 05-24-2015 07:28 PM
Improve 2013 Sightseer Road Handling? Dr Jay Winnebago Industries Owner's Forum 7 05-21-2014 10:39 PM
What did you do to improve ride/handling? Senior Chief Vintage RV's 24 04-25-2011 09:50 PM

» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:24 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×