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Old 11-18-2021, 08:58 AM   #1
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Liquid Springs test drive

I just got back from a 400 mile trek to Lafayette, Indiana to test drive the Southwind motorhome at LS. I have talked with Wayne Wells many times and we both thought it would be a good idea to test drive their coach with front and rear LS. Chad was my guide as I drove this coach for well over 45 minutes. We traveled over country roads and the interstate nearby. I wish I would have had my 2022 Tiffin 32SA there to run the same loop so I could compare the ride.


When I pulled out of the parking lot and headed down the country road I felt the coach handled the bumps in the road well. We negotiated many sharp turns much faster than I would have driven my own coach and experienced very little sway. Chad told me not to baby the coach. I went over a speed bump and a bridge with very little bounce. I did take a railroad track too fast and got a good jolt but no loss of control. We headed down I-65 and rode fine. Did not feel sway as trucks passed me. I asked to repeat the loop at speeds I would normally drive. It rode well and I took the railroad tracks at a slower speed and found the bump very acceptable. It was also windy, about 20 to 25 mph sustained. I did not notice the wind at all.


It is a large investment. The ride on my new coach is unacceptable in my opinion and sadly I have to pursue this avenue after spending this kind of money to start with. I would compare the ride on the LS coach very comparable to my 2015 Ram pickup with V8 which I consider very comfortable. If they can make my coach ride as well as theirs, I would be happy. The shop is modern and clean. Everyone I have had contact with has been a wealth of knowledge and very friendly and helpful. I would also suggest watching the videos from Endless RV about their installation and recent update video after driving it for 6 months.


This has been a long post, but I hope it helps someone looking at LS as I am.
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Old 11-21-2021, 12:15 PM   #2
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Thanks for the info.

Unfortunately they talk repeatedly about their system being for gas powered coaches. After the bouncing around I got from state route 550 (Aztex, NM to Cuba, NM) where I'd have to slow to 25 MPH for long stretches, and pretty much kept the speed at below 35 MPH most of the way, I was hoping this might work for me based on your description. Problem was bouncing and sway. I have air bags and they work really well to smooth out a freeway, but bounce way too much on old highways that are smooth, but with too many mounds. A dynamic system would be just the ticket.

Too bad they don't make them for Freightliner chassis'.
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Old 11-22-2021, 05:53 PM   #3
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Mike

On your Tiffin did you try any of the the after market suspension upgrades, ... track bar....etc....koni shocks....sumo springs....etc... before you pulled the trigger on LS. Curious to know because I am expecting delivery on a new Newmar Baystar 3014, I am concerned about the quality of the ride. my dealer recommend the front tracking bar, rear stabilizer bar from super steer... He claims with the new Ford Chassis this should be all I need... will see... hopefully he is right. I specifically asked him at time of purchase I was prepared to install the LS System, he advised to wait and see, try out the upgrades he was recommending.
Keep us posted on your install, would definitely be 8ntertested to see how youíll,Elton yournCoach.

Thanks

Tony
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Old 11-22-2021, 08:11 PM   #4
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I did not try any other of the aftermarket solutions. There are countless articles to read. Some folks say they helped somewhat. There are many articles from folks that have tried that route and then decided to go with LS. Consensus was there was no comparison after LS. It is not the total solution, but I have decided it was the best choice out there for me. You may want to talk to Wayne Wells at LS. He is a wealth of knowledge and has an impressive background.
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Old 11-22-2021, 08:16 PM   #5
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Endless RVing, Izzy & MJ, have several videos on the liquid springs. They installed front and rear on their Newmar Baystar. In one of the videos they said their biggest mistake was wasting money on other suspension modifications before the LS installation.
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Old 11-22-2021, 08:30 PM   #6
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Thanks for the info.

Unfortunately they talk repeatedly about their system being for gas powered coaches. After the bouncing around I got from state route 550 (Aztex, NM to Cuba, NM) where I'd have to slow to 25 MPH for long stretches, and pretty much kept the speed at below 35 MPH most of the way, I was hoping this might work for me based on your description. Problem was bouncing and sway. I have air bags and they work really well to smooth out a freeway, but bounce way too much on old highways that are smooth, but with too many mounds. A dynamic system would be just the ticket.

Too bad they don't make them for Freightliner chassis'.
Check out HWH Active Air suspension upgrade for motorhome with air bags.

Active Air Brochures & Manuals
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Old 11-22-2021, 09:29 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginton View Post
Mike

On your Tiffin did you try any of the the after market suspension upgrades, ... track bar....etc....koni shocks....sumo springs....etc... before you pulled the trigger on LS. Curious to know because I am expecting delivery on a new Newmar Baystar 3014, I am concerned about the quality of the ride. my dealer recommend the front tracking bar, rear stabilizer bar from super steer... He claims with the new Ford Chassis this should be all I need... will see... hopefully he is right. I specifically asked him at time of purchase I was prepared to install the LS System, he advised to wait and see, try out the upgrades he was recommending.
Keep us posted on your install, would definitely be 8ntertested to see how you’ll,Elton yournCoach.

Thanks

Tony

Seems to me, all those suspension upgrades, which I have done to my old W20, don't really improve the ride. They do improve handling but don't do anything for expansion joints, potholes, pavement lips, etc.
These HD leaf spring suspensions just aren't very supple.
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Old 11-23-2021, 08:43 AM   #8
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Seems to me, all those suspension upgrades, which I have done to my old W20, don't really improve the ride. They do improve handling but don't do anything for expansion joints, potholes, pavement lips, etc.
These HD leaf spring suspensions just aren't very supple.
Just what I was thinking. These threads always seem to mix handling with ride which ends up in people adding after market parts and being disappointed that the ride did not improve. After a couple of years worth of incremental upgrades I now have an F53 based coach that handles well. Limited sway, almost no truck push and tracks straight down the road. Unfortunately, I still lose fillings crossing 90% of bridges and I see nothing that will fix it without replacing or at least softening the leaf springs.
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Old 11-23-2021, 08:59 AM   #9
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I agree that most threads mix ride and handling...they seem focused on driver fatigue, which is a mix of both.

The two things that will improve the ride are tire pressures being correct and shocks. I hear a lot about the Sumo Springs but all that does is increase the spring rate, making the already harsh leaf springs even stiffer. I would like to drive one with Sumo springs rather than rely on what I think though.

I know the higher GVWR F53s have stiffer springs and the OP has a Tiffin with a higher GVWR chassis (22K with 24K optional) than mine which is the lightest duty F53 (18K). I wonder how much that makes an impact on ride. Probably a lot. The springs have to be a lot stiffer.

I added Konis and the ride is more controlled, as in less porpoising. The front axle settles down more quickly after a big slam, so there is less pounding through the steering wheel. It is also quieter. Worth the $700.

Tire pressures make a substantial difference. Running them as low as the charts indicate they should be reduces the spring rate and makes it ride less harsh. Freebie.

I am pretty happy with my 2021 now.

Liquid Springs are certainly the "nuclear option" and after researching them, I see why they are so expensive, they are far more than just springs. Very cool. Not in the cards for me.
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Old 11-23-2021, 11:54 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ginton View Post
Mike

On your Tiffin did you try any of the the after market suspension upgrades, ... track bar....etc....koni shocks....sumo springs....etc... before you pulled the trigger on LS. Curious to know because I am expecting delivery on a new Newmar Baystar 3014, I am concerned about the quality of the ride. my dealer recommend the front tracking bar, rear stabilizer bar from super steer... He claims with the new Ford Chassis this should be all I need... will see... hopefully he is right. I specifically asked him at time of purchase I was prepared to install the LS System, he advised to wait and see, try out the upgrades he was recommending.
Keep us posted on your install, would definitely be 8ntertested to see how youíll,Elton yournCoach.

Thanks

Tony
Ginton, we had a new 2019 Tiffin 32SA on the 24K chassis. On our first trip to the coast from central Oregon, I though I had lost my wife a few times from bumps and jolts, not counting the swaying and porpoising that went on. After that, we went to Hendersonís Line-Up, in Grants Pass and did a full suspension upgrade: new front sway bar, added another read sway bar, rear trac bar, steering stabilizer, and dual Koni FSD shocks (total of 8), laser alignment and 4 corner weight. It definitely rode and handled better, took curves much better. Our last, long trip was 3 months ago and we hit some roads that literally beat us bad (I10 from Las Vegas to Flagstaff, as an example). Having spent the money we did, I was very disappointed in the long trip aspect of the coach. For short trips, 3 to 4 hours, not areal issue. Long trips, well, still wears you out and beats you up with the F53 suspension. Now, I have to admit, there were others we talked with, in the same rig as ours, traveling the same road in a stock unit, who said there was no problem - ride was fine. Maybe it all comes down to expectations of the unit? We really liked the storage and layout of the 32SA, but was not happy with the comfort level of the ride. Two months ago, we traded in on a used DP and are very satisfied with the ride and handling. We did give LS a thought, but felt that if you were going to spend that kind of money to upgrade a gasser, why not just move to a DP?
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Old 11-23-2021, 02:18 PM   #11
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Why do people buy a motorhome that rides so rough it knocks there teeth out. Why not take that 10-15k you would pay for LS and upgrade to something nicer and save the headache. Iím sure people took them for a test drive before they bought them.
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Old 11-23-2021, 03:37 PM   #12
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Why do people buy a motorhome that rides so rough it knocks there teeth out. Why not take that 10-15k you would pay for LS and upgrade to something nicer and save the headache. Iím sure people took them for a test drive before they bought them.
Most ďtest ridesĒ arenít really a test. Up and down some nice roads that present no challenges. 15 to 20 minutes and decision made.
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Old 11-23-2021, 03:45 PM   #13
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Most “test rides” aren’t really a test. Up and down some nice roads that present no challenges. 15 to 20 minutes and decision made.

Actually, most motorhome test drives are a test of the new driver's ability to keep it on the road.


NO WAY is there for a new motorhome prospect to discern one coach/chassis from another on a short dealer routed test drive. Maybe 1/4 of the really experienced motorhome drivers could discern a difference.


Short story long-- after 150,000 DP miles, did test drives in 4 new DP's. This was at an FMCA Convention in Redmond Oregon. Found a great back road with curves, bumps, etc. Drove our current coach (Suspension modified 1993 Foretravel) at reasonably high speeds over the "course". Dianne took notes of speed, sway, etc.


Took the 4 new coaches over exactly the same route and same speeds. Very enlightening. And EXTREMELY hard to duplicate on a test drive.


Again, the test drive is to make the buyer feel comfortable with their choice, NOT to have them discern the subtleties of ride/handling of one coach over another.
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Old 11-23-2021, 03:52 PM   #14
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I had several conversations with Wayne at liquid spring last year. Was trying to encourage our Newmar dealer here in Ontario to become a certified installation centre (they declined). We were seriously considering doing it this year and would have, if we kept the Canyon Star. Instead, we lucked into a Ventana that met our needs so didn’t go that route. If I had an f53 still, I probably would have jumped on it.
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