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Old 09-10-2019, 05:59 AM   #1
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Anti sway bars

Hello Class A friends.

After several weekend trips in our new to us 2004Fleetwood Bounder 35B, I am thinking of a rear anti sway bar. Some questions.

1. Any group preferences? One overwhelming better than others?

2. Is there a difference between an anti sway bar and a “trac bar”? It appears they are just different terms.

3. I’ve seen some that are bars that go from one side of the frame to other. And some that don’t require any drilling and attach to the differential to the frame, like the Henderson model. Is one better performing than the other?

Thank you.
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Old 09-10-2019, 06:17 AM   #2
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Is this a Ford F53 chassis?? If so:

1) Perform the Cheap Handling Fix (CHF) first. This is an adjustment to the front and rear sway bars that significantly improves sway. Heres an example of how I did mine:

F53 – CHF (Cheap Handling Fix) – Fix for sway and handling – 1999 Southwind 35S

2) The second most significant improvement was when I replaced the shocks. The OEM shocks I removed were completely worn out.

F53 – Replace Shock Absorbers – 1999 Southwind 35S


3) I made a rear track bar. I haven't been on any long trips with it yet, but from what other s report, this also helps:

F53 – Homemade rear track bar – 1999 Southwind 35S


..
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Old 09-10-2019, 06:25 AM   #3
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A track bar is designed to stop the rear of the RV from moving right to left, like a weather vane.

Anti sway bars are designed to stop the upper part of the RV from swaying like a tree in the wind.

Push on the side of the RV, about shoulder height, and see if its moving like a weather vane or swaying like a tree.
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Old 09-10-2019, 07:18 AM   #4
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Before you do anything, weigh the coach and see where you stand with axle weights. Move as much weight as you can without overloading the front axle. Also look at your wheelbase as a percentage of overall length. Long rear overhangs along with too much weight in the rear of the coach contribute to sway.
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Old 09-10-2019, 07:37 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waiter21 View Post
Is this a Ford F53 chassis?? If so:

1) Perform the Cheap Handling Fix (CHF) first. This is an adjustment to the front and rear sway bars that significantly improves sway. Heres an example of how I did mine:

F53 – CHF (Cheap Handling Fix) – Fix for sway and handling – 1999 Southwind 35S

2) The second most significant improvement was when I replaced the shocks. The OEM shocks I removed were completely worn out.

F53 – Replace Shock Absorbers – 1999 Southwind 35S


3) I made a rear track bar. I haven't been on any long trips with it yet, but from what other s report, this also helps:

F53 – Homemade rear track bar – 1999 Southwind 35S


..
My chassis is a Workhorse W22. 22,000lb GVW. The OEM chassis has a square tube, which looks pretty solid that goes from one frame rail to the other. Solid mounted. No adjustment possible. That is the only type of frame mounted is on my coach.
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Old 09-10-2019, 08:02 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teamfoxy View Post
Before you do anything, weigh the coach and see where you stand with axle weights. Move as much weight as you can without overloading the front axle. Also look at your wheelbase as a percentage of overall length. Long rear overhangs along with too much weight in the rear of the coach contribute to sway.

Great suggestions Teamfoxy. We have all axels weighed and on our last two 4 day trips, had nothing in the rear other than what is stock to the coach. Generator, bed and so on. We don't travel heavy so all of our Stuff went in the front storage bins. Let me say that we have a Steer Safe front wheel system that came already on the coach when we bought but was missing the drive side springs and hardware. We installed replacement parts from company and this past trip was a huge and noticeable improvement in driving experience. I am a former Class A CDL driver and do not over react to truck sway or front end wandering. I'm accustomed to that.

However on the drive home, we drove for 5 hours in 25 to 30 mpg cross winds and I did notice a lot of sway and some front end wandering. As my coach has not such added Track Bar system in place, I believe I wish to add this winter. I have newer Bilstein Shocks and the ride is pretty comfortable. No proposing up and down or hard ride.
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Old 09-10-2019, 09:39 AM   #7
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Rear Trac Bars generally help the "tail wag", that is the coach moving left / right over the rear differential and is attached from the frame to the differential housing. Sway bars are a different animal dependent upon how much you have. In my case, with an F53 frame, we replaced the front bar with a 1 3/4' sway bar and added two forward facing bars on the rear, for a total of 3. When you do a 4 corner weight on your rig, you can also calculate the air pressure, per axle, based on weight/ tire manufacturer and size. Normally, most people are running too high a pressure which causes a tougher ride.
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Old 09-10-2019, 10:04 AM   #8
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Sway Bar vs Trac Bar

Thank you everyone. Great points. On my Fleetwood with the Workhorse Chassis, it came with a front and rear sway bar in the form of a rigid square bar or tube that runs from frame to frame. I believe this is a good system for locking everything together. My issue is tail wagging the dog situation. Not severe but worth addressing. My stock system is the 2.5" sway bar and is said to be very solid.
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Old 09-11-2019, 06:17 AM   #9
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Correction. My Bounder has the 2” bar in the front sway bar. They made an upgrade in 2004 models that increased this to a 2.5” square bar sway bar. Told this really made a noticeable difference over the previous 2 inch bar. I found the replacement upgraded bar and the kit is $232.00 plus the upgraded brackets at $95.00 per pair. Can replace myself and will be a winter project.
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Old 09-16-2019, 10:04 PM   #10
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I had an older Chevy P-Chassis and replaced the factory sway bar bushings with polyurethane. It made quite a difference and was pretty cheap as suspension upgrades go.

Be sure to have your front end checked because lose front end suspension parts will allow more "wag." Even alignment can cause handling issues.
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