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Old 05-04-2016, 11:03 AM   #29
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1974 20' Argosy 20
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Originally Posted by GWallace View Post
By the way my mom has a 77 Argosy 24 and she had the same issue in 1995 until the air bags were replaced at that time. With the new air bags, the front end ride and handling improved.
Gregg
Wow Gregg, if I remember right you're about 72 years old. That means your mom is something like 90 years old and she still owns and drives an Argosy!

Now THAT'S impressive!
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Old 05-04-2016, 11:24 AM   #30
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1977 20' Argosy 20
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Close Brad,
Mom will be 97 next month. Unfortunately she has had a stroke and doesn't drive anymore. (about 6 years ago). She lives in Austin, TX and still has the 24 which belonged to my brother and then uncle at one time. My sister is having surgery in two weeks and my first "out of town" trip with my 20 will be to Austin to stay at mom's place while my sister goes through her ordeal. After we did some repairs to her 24 in 1995, my mom and sister drove the unit from Austin TX to Alaska and back that year. People kept asking them where the man was to be that far away from home in the motorhome. The Argosy did just fine for the trip which was about 8 weeks.
For mom the trip was a return to Alaska since we had gone once before in 1959 when Alaska had just become a state. There had been a lot of changes from 1959 to 1995.
Gregg
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Old 05-04-2016, 11:55 AM   #31
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snip.....

It's my understanding all of the motorhomes originally came with the air bags inside the front coil springs.
I'm still pretty sure airbags in the front were introduced (specifically on 20ft) after 1975 but before 1977 as the majority of early 20s don't have them, yet every one from 1977 I have heard of has them or is known to have had the uprated coil springs added.
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Old 05-04-2016, 12:22 PM   #32
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1976 24' Argosy 24
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Elisa,
If you want, I can write up a detailed step by step on how I installed my springs if you are going to do it yourself. It's not that hard, you just need to be patient. It took me around an hour and a half my first time doing it. Others claim a little longer to do but either way the average person at home can do it.
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Old 05-04-2016, 01:20 PM   #33
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1982 28' Airstream 280
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The following is from the GM P-30 Motorhome Service manual discussing the front springs. Sorry for the lack of spaces between some words but that is the way my computer copied it.

VEHICLE RIDEHEIGHT-FRONTCOIL SPRING/AIR BAG REPLACEMENT The motor home owner should be cautioned in the use ofsomeafter-market frontcoilsprings currentlyavailable. Someafter-market frontcoilspringsaremerchandised as a methodto increase ride heightfor the motor home. To obtainthis additional ride height, manufacturers have increased the diameter ofthe wire slightlyand added one extra coil. However, use of these after-market springs should beconsideredveryriskyforthemotorhomeowner. GM recommends the use of only factory-approved replacementpartsforthis "safety-sensitive" areaofthevehicle. Some after-market coils arephysicallytoo largefor thenormally designed workingareaofthefrontcoilspring asthewheelgoesthrough itsridetravel. On crush, these after-market springs can create a metal-to-metal "coilbound" condition before the ride stops come into play. (Thedamagecreated byusingametal-to- metalsolid coil can be compared to installing a piece of well casing in
SECTION 3 STEERING,SUSPENSION,WHEELSANDTIRES place of a spring, then raising the vehicle in the air and dropping the vehicle to the ground.) The force of this metal-to-metal "coil-bound" condition is transferred directly into the potential destruction ofthe lower balljoints or broken lower control arms. The addition of a spring shim (donut-type spacer)has asimilareffect ofpromoting a "coil-bound" condition. Complaintsof airbagfailures are alsothe result ofthese after-marketfrontcoil springs. The springs have atendency to "pinch" the air bag between the coils on crush. Frontcoil springs should ONLYbereplaced byaqualified service shop. Access to the front coil spring and the air bag is gained by lowering the lower control arm. CAUTION: USE ONLY GM APPROVED REPLACEMENT PARTS FOR THIS SAFETY-SENSITIVE AREA OFTHEVEHICLE. 1984toCurrent.................. GMPartNo.14054345 Priorto1984........................ GMPartNo.472222 NOTE: 1984 to current front springs (GM Part No. 14054345) can be used for 1983andprioryears that require front spring GM Part No. 472222. This will raise the frontof thevehicle 3/8 inchto 1/2 inch measured at the "A/BC" measurement location shown in Figure A3-2-1. Study Figure A3-2-1 at the back ofthis section ofthe manual to determine if the useful life of the front coil springsisexhaustedandreplacementofthefront coil springs is necessary.


The P-30 has a very short suspension travel. If you look at the springs and the distance to the bump stops there just isn't much room for travel. The air bags really do help prevent that spring bound condition.
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Old 05-04-2016, 02:22 PM   #34
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Dan, I've read that section of the manual before. The problem with some of the information is the part numbers referenced are no longer available and if you follow the supersession chain various part numbers end up being one part number and that part number specs don't match the original specifications.

That leads me to believe the springs with the new part number doesn't necessarily match the size and weight rating of the original springs which tells me the springs that the supersession leads you to are not necessarily correct either.

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying not to use air bags but I also don't think the after market springs by companies such as Supersteer are quite as risky as GM alludes too. There are a lot of people out there running up-rated springs that have not reported any issues.

My only gripe with air bags is they don't last all that long.

I'm actually surprised that GM feels it's ok to raise the ride height by 3/8" to 1/2". Wouldn't that change some of the alignment characteristics?

I sure wish original GM parts were readily available for this rigs!
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Old 05-04-2016, 03:10 PM   #35
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Brad I realize the numbers are old but I would make sure any replacement spring is dimensionally the same as original. Any cross sectional size increase to gain capacity may do more harm then good.

The bags do wear excessively when under inflated. I ran an ail line from my rear compressor through a pressure regulator to continuously maintain the proper pressure in the front bags. I haven't lost a bag in quite awhile.
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Old 05-04-2016, 03:54 PM   #36
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Brad I realize the numbers are old but I would make sure any replacement spring is dimensionally the same as original. Any cross sectional size increase to gain capacity may do more harm then good.
I wish I could do that but my original springs are long gone! The trick would be to find a rig that is known to have the original springs and take some measurements. Someday.....

Quote:
The bags do wear excessively when under inflated. I ran an ail line from my rear compressor through a pressure regulator to continuously maintain the proper pressure in the front bags. I haven't lost a bag in quite awhile.
I was actually planning on doing something similar only I was going to have solenoids and a rotary control switch to select which solenoid to fill with air. The solenoid would be closed when 55 psi was reached but could be opened to add more air or dump air depending on switch positioning.

Some time ago I had discussed the setup you're using with Keyair and my argument against your method was that with both air bags tied together, when one wheel hit a hard bump that would force the other air bag to over pressurize to a certain extent. At least for a brief period of time.

However your real world experience tells me that the 1/4" lines are to small to allow enough air to be forced to the other bag in such a short period of time as in a wheel bounce. I guess I need to tell Keyair to go ahead and use your method!
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Old 05-04-2016, 06:15 PM   #37
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Brad, if you want original springs I can bring them with me from that front end that I have. I have to remove them anyway
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Old 05-04-2016, 07:22 PM   #38
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Brad, if you want original springs I can bring them with me from that front end that I have. I have to remove them anyway
If I remember you right you said that chassis was an early 80's. Do you know what the chassis weight rating was?

All I was looking for based on discussions with Dan was the coil diameter. I'd like to compare that dimension with the springs that are on the market today.
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Old 05-04-2016, 08:20 PM   #39
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Brad I think my feed lines for the front bags are 1/16". I took the feed from the dash gauge feed. I don't believe side to side feedback is a problem but I did install two check valves just in case. The small push on fittings are inexpensive.

I never gave it a thought about not having original springs to compare size.
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Old 05-05-2016, 08:43 AM   #40
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I had thought the feed lines were 1/4". I've installed the bags but haven't even looked at the feed lines yet. It's been 10 years since I installed the replacement bags in the 310 and I don't remember what size the line was.

With 1/16" feed lines there is no way a bounce on one side will affect the other side and with check valves it definitely won't happen
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