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Old 07-30-2006, 09:28 PM   #1
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Recommended shocks for a 71 Overlander?

I was wondering if anyone could recommend a good replacement shock for a 1971 27' Overlander. If you have any part number that would also be appreciated. I have not been able to find any replacements in my area, so I will most likely have to order them online. Thanks for your help!

Everett
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Old 07-30-2006, 10:24 PM   #2
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some say the Monroe 550003 fits, but I could never verify that it was OK to use in a horizontal installation. Changed my shock mounts so that it was vertical and am happy with it.

I did some manual squeezes of the shock in the horizontal position and it seemed to provide resistance. Many say you don't need a shock at all, so maybe the 550003 is just fine!
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Old 07-30-2006, 10:38 PM   #3
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Everett,

Call Ron at South Jersey RV. He has the right shocks for your application. 856-697-9600

Frederic
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Old 07-31-2006, 09:52 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ecomstock
I was wondering if anyone could recommend a good replacement shock for a 1971 27' Overlander. If you have any part number that would also be appreciated. I have not been able to find any replacements in my area, so I will most likely have to order them online. Thanks for your help!

Everett
Part # 12416.

They are special "horizontal" shocks, available from some Airstream dealers.

Andy
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Old 08-01-2006, 02:36 PM   #5
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Talking shocks and how to install

The first time I installed a set it was a pain because I did not know what I know now.
By the way, I got this info from the guys at www.outofdoorsmart.com and all the parts I used. I live close to them but have been short on time and they ups stuff to me when that happens.

The first mistake I made was getting the old shock off. I should have used some penetrating oil a good 24 hours ahead of the time I wanted to work on the shocks. That would have kept me from twisting the Shock-bolt threads off the Shock-bolt. When I did that, I had to find one, and I had to get it welded back on. Welding under an old Airstream is not a preferred job.
I did find one at http://outofdoorsmart.com/cgi-bin/on...duct=10024:818. Like I said, if I had not twisted it off all I would have needed was the 4 shocks themselves.http://outofdoorsmart.com/cgi-bin/on...uct=10024:6853

Once it was all welded on and in place I could not get the shock on there. I knew I had it in the right place but it would not fit. It lacked a little clearance. This is what I did. I took the rubber bushing out and cut it in half. That gave me clearance to get the new shock on there and then I could put half the Bushing on then the other half. It worked like a charm and when I put the washer back on I used lock-tight to help keep the nut on.

If done right, it is not that big a job. I just had to make sure my jack went onto the frame to lift the trailer.
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Old 08-01-2006, 03:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fixer58
The first time I installed a set it was a pain because I did not know what I know now.
The first mistake I made was getting the old shock off. I should have used some penetrating oil a good 24 hours ahead of the time I wanted to work on the shocks. That would have kept me from twisting the Shock-bolt threads off the Shock-bolt. When I did that, I had to find one, and I had to get it welded back on. Welding under an old Airstream is not a preferred job.
I did find one at outofdoorsmart.com/. Like I said, if I had not twisted it off all I would have needed was the 4 shocks themselves.[
Once it was all welded on and in place I could not get the shock on there. I knew I had it in the right place but it would not fit. It lacked a little clearance. This is what I did. I took the rubber bushing out and cut it in half. That gave me clearance to get the new shock on there and then I could put half the Bushing on then the other half. It worked like a charm and when I put the washer back on I used lock-tight to help keep the nut on.

If done right, it is not that big a job. I just had to make sure my jack went onto the frame to lift the trailer.

Shock replacement is done easier than that.

Some dealers will tell you that you must drop the axles. "NOT TRUE".

Leave the shock nut in place, making sure it covers the end threads.

Simply take a crow bar, place it on the nut, and bend the bracket enough to remove the shock.

After you have replaced the shock, leave the shock bracket alone.

Leaving it bent, will not hurt anything.

Andy
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Old 08-02-2006, 01:58 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In

Simply take a crow bar, place it on the nut, and bend the bracket enough to remove the shock.

After you have replaced the shock, leave the shock bracket alone.

Leaving it bent, will not hurt anything.

Andy
Andy,

The key to any suspension is geometry - how can this bent bracket be acceptable????

Please explain,
Hank
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Old 08-02-2006, 02:10 PM   #8
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Hi ecomstock--In reading several threads regarding axle replacement, the comment keeps coming up that shocks are not really required on Torflex, or Dura Torque Axles. What about leaving your current shocks alone?--Frank S
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Old 08-02-2006, 02:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HenrySpilko
Andy,

The key to any suspension is geometry - how can this bent bracket be acceptable????

Please explain,
Hank
Andy actually demonstrated the "bend it" technique to me at his shop. I was very taken aback at first. After thinking about, I have agree with Andy. The bend does change the geometry slightly, but it's mostly a rotation of the cylinder, which doesn't affect anything. If you look at most shock installations on rear axles of pickups and vans, you'll see that the shock axis is often not exactly aligned with the motion of the axle bracket, eg, pretty much straight up and down--lots of shocks lean with the top of the shock inboard from the bottom of the shock.

So if it's good enough for Lee Iococca, it's probably good enough for us, especially since we "don't need a shock on a torsion axle!"
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Old 08-02-2006, 02:19 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank S
Hi ecomstock--In reading several threads regarding axle replacement, the comment keeps coming up that shocks are not really required on Torflex, or Dura Torque Axles. What about leaving your current shocks alone?--Frank S
That is a very real option. Some have left the shocks alone for many years. That is why the nuts and studs become rusted.

There is some ride improvement with a fresh set of shocks. However the ride improvement may not be very measurable on a GOOD axle. On an axle that is marginal the shock may have more benefits. On an axle that is bad or has sagged, the shock will not operate since the axle is not really moving much.

A shock dampens movement. In an axle that doesn't move a shock has no job to do. In a torsion axle the axle movement is not as great as other type of axles to start with.

So in my opinion shocks are totally optional. And I have shocks on my trailer.

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Old 08-02-2006, 02:34 PM   #11
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Hi--I have replaced my shocks in the past. Am now considering new axles, and will probably go without shocks on new axles.--Frank S
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Old 08-02-2006, 02:38 PM   #12
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Thanks Zep!

Zep,

I think I understand.

It seems to be a bit of a design limitation that the bracket has to be bent or axle removed to replace shocks!

Thanks again for the help,
Hank
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Old 08-02-2006, 02:59 PM   #13
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you can check how I moved both the frame-mounted shock bolt and the axle bracket in order to get a more vertical installation here

http://www.airforums.com/forum...1-post131.html

There is still not much clearance, but I can get the shock on and off with the tire on the ground or jacked up. I like it a lot better, design-wise, but I'm not sure it was necessary.
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Old 08-02-2006, 03:03 PM   #14
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Shocks

Shock absorbers minimize motion.

Without them, the motion increases, from moderate to severe.

As always, it's up to the individual as to how much they may or may not wish to punish the trailer.

The absolute guarantee however, if you do punish it, is you will create some possible hefty damages.

The resulting damage will certain cost far more to repair than a set of shocks.

Since most of us agree that Airstream is a great company, and has for more than 70 years researched many many points of it's design.

That being the case, I don't think Airstream would be foolish enough to waste money on shock absorbers, if indeed they felt they were not necessary.

But the need or not, as the case may be for shocks, is probably in the same category as why waste the money on shocks, or wheel balancing, or a sway control, or a load equalizing hitch, or on tires different from autombile tires, or on gaskets, or sealers, or grease in the bearings, or new grease seals, or wax on the exterior finish, or segment protectors, or rock guards, or a known rating wheel for a spare?

To some owners, all of those are an absolute waste of money. But the fact is, if they have decided not to do those things, for the sake of a few dollars, that does not eliminate the fact that they "are necessary".

Many of us respect the "edge", others like to lean way over it.

With respect to Airstream products, the coaches that belong to or formerly belonged to owners that like to lean way over the edge, they keep service departments, sooner or later, "VERY BUSY", year round.

PM, proper care and safety are not issues, they are facts.

Ignore them, and somebody will pay for it, somehow, someway, someday.

Andy
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