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Old 05-31-2023, 05:27 PM   #1
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Classic front air suspension upgrade?

Has anyone swapped out the front shocks in a Freightliner Cascadia Classic from regular shocks to air ride?

The front of this coach rides a bit rough when the roads are bad, wondering if there is a swap for air ride if that would help?
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Old 05-31-2023, 09:38 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AZRenegade View Post
Has anyone swapped out the front shocks in a Freightliner Cascadia Classic from regular shocks to air ride?

The front of this coach rides a bit rough when the roads are bad, wondering if there is a swap for air ride if that would help?
We would be interested in this too. We have looked into getting new upgraded shocks but not having much success in finding anything.

The front end is bad on rough roads and on bridge transitions is close to losing control of the steering.

We had the alignment done which vastly improved the steering but fixing the shocks is next on our list of upgrades.
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Old 06-01-2023, 04:49 AM   #3
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FWIW, your rig should drive like it is on rails. That is one of the benefits of a TC.

Nord, the sensation you get on bad bridge transitions should not be happening. It would have to be alignment, tires, or bad shocks causing that. However, depending on how your rig’s weight distribution works out, you may be experiencing a bit of body roll that feels like the rig is wandering.

You can add airbags to the suspension, or upgrade to a true air ride axle, but I would consult with your builder first. Our rigs typically carry more steer axle weight, and have a higher center of gravity, than some working semi-trucks. Softening up the ride may create it’s own handling issues.


Complete axle - https://www.hendrickson-intl.com/products/airtek/airtek
Air Kit - https://www.4statetrucks.com/front-a...kit-29-05k0902
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Old 06-01-2023, 06:22 AM   #4
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Thanks for the info.
Agree with you that it should not be like that.
Alignment was just completed and that has helped.
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Old 06-04-2023, 05:43 PM   #5
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replaced front shocks on Cascadia

I replaced the front shocks with 99B 3209 Koni RV EVO
Shocks and made a huge difference, got them from Henderson Supersteer www.supersteerparts.com
Note that the mounting bore has to be increased using a cobalt drill for stainless steel I got one from Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 06-07-2023, 01:08 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Birdgoblue View Post
I replaced the front shocks with 99B 3209 Koni RV EVO
Shocks and made a huge difference, got them from Henderson Supersteer www.supersteerparts.com
Note that the mounting bore has to be increased using a cobalt drill for stainless steel I got one from Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
I would be willing to try this before converting to air, what year is your rig?
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Old 06-08-2023, 12:06 AM   #7
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2022 Explorer 40ERB with Cascadia P4 front end
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Old 06-08-2023, 06:38 PM   #8
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I’d like to try these as well. Thanks for posting about them!
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Old 06-12-2023, 08:21 PM   #9
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I would like to hear more details about how the Koni shocks helped your Explorer. I have the same model. Where did you buy them and who installed them. Thank, Ron
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Old 07-14-2023, 11:18 AM   #10
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@Birdgoblue - I bought a pair of the Koni shocks from supersteer (oddly they didnít come with dust covers like yours did), but they appear to be a good bit longer than the stock shocks on our 2022 Cascadia.

As it sits right now, the eye to eye length of the front shocks is roughly 15.5Ē. The fully collapsed length of these Koniís is about 15Ē. Looking online, the fully collapsed length of the stock shocks is around 13.5 - 14Ē. Iím worried these might bottom out on up travel.

Strangely, though, even with the stock setup, as it sits right now the bump stop above the front axle is about 3Ē below the frame rail. So, even this configuration seems like the shock would bottom out. Is there really that little up travel on these 18k lb front axles? Have you noticed them showing any signs of bottoming out?

Just looking for some additional feedback before I drill out the bushing sleeves.

Thanks!
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Old 07-14-2023, 11:20 AM   #11
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@Birdgoblue - I bought a pair of the Koni shocks from super steer (oddly they didnít come with dust covers like yours did), but they appear to be a good bit longer than the stock shocks on our 2022 Cascadia.

As it sits right now, the eye to eye length of the front shocks is roughly 15.5Ē. The fully collapsed length of these Koniís is about 15Ē. Looking online, the fully collapsed length of the stock shocks is around 13.5 - 14Ē. Iím worried these might bottom out on up travel.

Strangely, though, even with the stock setup, the bump stop above the front axle sits about 3Ē below the frame rail. So, even this configuration seems like the shock would bottom out. Is there really that little up travel on these 18k lb front axles? Have you noticed them showing any signs of bottoming out?

Just looking for some feedback before drilling out the bushing sleeves.

Thanks!
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Old 07-15-2023, 07:13 AM   #12
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We have not noticed any problems with this shock set up. Just a much smoother ride over the same interstates
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Old 07-15-2023, 07:18 PM   #13
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Thanks for the reply and sorry for the double post above.
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Old 08-10-2023, 06:00 PM   #14
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I ended up getting some more measurements and working with supersteer to return my 99B-3209ís and replace them with 99B-3254ís. These are slightly shorter than the stock shocks, but they are a pretty good fit on my chassis (2022 P4 126). Iíll try to post a few pics below.

In the last pic you can see that the mounting bracket is touching the dust cover. The same is true on the driverís side as well. Itís not actually pressing into the shock body, but I might end up adding a couple of washers to the top and bottom mounts of each shock to move them out slightly. Thereís plenty of thread to do so on both mounting bolts. I drove it about 50 miles today on some rough roads around here, and they donít appear to have rubbed.

Iím going to put a few hundred miles on the coach this weekend, so Iíll have a better sense of any improvement afterwards. However, after the initial test run today, I want to say the ride is much improved. My only real complaints were that 1) once the front end started bouncing, it took quite a while for it to settle out, and 2) when you went over large seams in the road or when there was a significant transition between a bridge and the highway, the front end would drop out violently. I canít weigh in on #2 yet, but issue #1 is significantly better. Another thing I noticed almost right away, was that the coach felt a lot less top heavy. Thatís kind of hard to explain, and this was never really an issue for me, but the additional stability left to right is a nice benefit.

Cheers!
JT
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