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Old 10-20-2020, 11:29 AM   #1
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What's The Best Shocks For 2018 F53 Ford Chassis

I Have A 2018 Fleetwood Bounder with the F53 Ford Chassis. I recently completed the rear & front sway bar kit (what A difference) now looking to update the shocks..
Any advice would be much appreciated.
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Old 10-20-2020, 12:12 PM   #2
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I don’t know what’s best, but in my efforts to improve handling on my F53, I installed Koni FSD shocks after doing the CHF with Hellwig adjustable links in front and the front links in back to maintain factory geometry. Not sure what you mean specifically by “sway bar kit” but if you did the CHF without maintaining the original angle of the (anti)sway bars, I address this. If you replaced them with aftermarket stuff I’m sure it’s a non-issue.

After the CHF, the Koni shocks did add some additional side-to-side stability, but they also stiffened the ride to the point that it was too harsh and seemed like it might even start damaging the interior cabinets. I wasn’t impressed at all with the so-called “frequency selective damping”. The results seemed to me to be the exact opposite of the claims for FSD. Others seem happy with them - I wasn’t. But there was some added sway control - just not enough to justify the ride change.

If I kept the coach I would have at least put the Bilsteins back on the front. When I sold it I explained this to the new owner and provided the original 2010 shocks, which were, in retrospect, just fine. So I’d look elsewhere to improve handling. Your 2018 factory shocks are probably the best answer to the question.
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Old 10-20-2020, 02:49 PM   #3
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Although a Workhorse chassis, our last coach had stability problems with side winds, passing trucks and it porpoised at bridge abutments and pavement sections. A rear BlueOx TigerTrac bar and Koni FSDs did the trick...we were able to forego all other mainstream fixes. Was very impressed with the Konis.

Just re-read R.Wold's post, luckily, we didn't experience that kind of ride harshness.
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Old 10-20-2020, 03:10 PM   #4
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What's The Best Shocks For 2018 F53 Ford Chassis

I have a 2019 Newmar on the 24k F53 chassis and found that the Koni FSD shocks improved the ride over the stock shocks.
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Old 10-20-2020, 08:40 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R.Wold View Post
After the CHF, the Koni shocks did add some additional side-to-side stability, but they also stiffened the ride to the point that it was too harsh and seemed like it might even start damaging the interior cabinets. I wasn’t impressed at all with the so-called “frequency selective damping”. The results seemed to me to be the exact opposite of the claims for FSD. Others seem happy with them - I wasn’t. But there was some added sway control - just not enough to justify the ride change.
That's the exact opposite of my experience with Koni's. I would not expect them to do anything for sway but then I only have them on the front. They definitely have made a very significant improvement in the harshness of the front suspension. You still feel the bumps but they are nowhere near as "jolting" as with the Bilstein's. It's an I-beam suspension so it's never going to be plush but for me the Koni's were money well spent.
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Old 10-20-2020, 09:26 PM   #6
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22,000 GVWR, 242" wheelbase, 2019 Ford chassis.

I changed out the stock Ford Sachs shocks (should be spelled "Sucks") at 800 miles for four Koni FSD's. I do not know when Ford stopped using Bilsteins on the F53 but they do not use them anymore.

The ride improvement on rough roads and bridge joints was dramatic. Our Garmin RV 785 has a built-in dashcam and if it thinks you've been in an accident it bleeps and saves 1.5 minutes of video before and after the event. It used to bleep not infrequently and on some local roads it bleeped all the time on certain spots.

After having the FSD's installed it bleeped exactly once between northern Ohio and southern Florida. The local parts that made it bleep now feel like any other part of the road.

Due to the dual valving on the FSD's I expected a reduction in sway and I was not disappointed. With the stock Ford Sucks shocks I would see 20-22 degrees of sway on the front floor using a digital inclinometer (while my wife drove). We actually drove the "loop" where the truck shop is right before we had the FSD's installed and right after we left. After we left the sway was down to 10-12 degrees on the same turns at the same low speeds.

They're certainly not cheap but the motorhome no longer sounds and feels like it's coming apart on bridge joints and bad roads. Really bad roads are a different story, of course, but there's only so much that can be done there.

HTH,

Ray
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Old 10-20-2020, 09:31 PM   #7
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Koni FSD. We actually backed out the CHF when they were added. We tried new Bilsteins before that and they gave us a super harsh ride as compared to the Koni’s.
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