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Old 04-17-2014, 10:36 AM   #1
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2012 27' FB International
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F-150 Suspension Help

I have the following setup;
2007 F-150 Super Crew 5.4L V8 Gas, hard shell tonneau, Tow package w/3.73 2 wheel drive, 78K mi. Equalizer WD hitch.
27' AS International Serenity, just my wife and dog. 7600 GVWR, 760 hitch wt.
It pulls fine although it struggles up the Cascades (we are in Oregon). Whenever I hit a small bump, the trailer creates a bit of a wave to the TV. Do I need shocks and if so what type should I put on the truck?
Thanks
Mike
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:54 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Mikec1231 View Post
I have the following setup;
2007 F-150 Super Crew 5.4L V8 Gas, hard shell tonneau, Tow package w/3.73 2 wheel drive, 78K mi. Equalizer WD hitch.
27' AS International Serenity, just my wife and dog. 7600 GVWR, 760 hitch wt.
It pulls fine although it struggles up the Cascades (we are in Oregon). Whenever I hit a small bump, the trailer creates a bit of a wave to the TV. Do I need shocks and if so what type should I put on the truck?
Thanks
Mike
Your describing an absolute normal ride.

But, the regular shocks on your truck might need replacing. If so, then replace them with originals, or perhaps heavy duty shocks, but nothing fancy.

Andy 15.2
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:35 AM   #3
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I have almost the same truck

I have a very similar 2006, but it is 4WD. I have not been able to determine what tow package I have, but the posted passenger and cargo payload on the door label is 7200#. What does yours say?

I'm towing a 6300# 2001 Safari 25 and wondered how the combo would do out west. Btw I don't notice any undue vibration transmission to the TV, but I have less than 100 miles of towing experience since we bought the trailer a couple months ago.

Al
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Old 04-17-2014, 02:24 PM   #4
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I see only 47 posts on your avatar so allow me to extrapolate ongoing discussions on these forums I hope helps you in resolving your existing issue....




First some homework:

1. Open you driver’s side door and write down your "Max Payload". As per your Ford manual, this "max amount" not to be exceeded, assumes a full tank of gas and one driver at 150lbs.

2. Now, add the weight of everything in your vehicle - 200lbs for your topper, equipment in bed, folks in truck, bags, etc.

3. Determine the TRUE tongue weight of your trailer, this best done with a scale or at the “truck scales”. The weight you posted for "value" trailer tongue weight is from Airstream of an EMPTY trailer. You need the actual tongue weight of your Airstream, that is, propane in the tanks, spare tire, fluids in tanks (if any), items in fridge or pantry, etc. I guarantee you, your sitting at a MINIMAL of 850lbs tongue weight with nothing more than propane in the tanks and spare tire so let's use that number (the average for 25FB & 27FB ready to go on the road hovers around 900-1100 lbs).
I don't know the weight of your Equalizer system, but let’s assume that weight is offset by the small amount it transfers back to the trailers axels (and NO - it’s not 20-30 percent of the tongue weight like some like to claim) - more like 100lbs which on my ProPride offsets the weight of the ProPride yoke, stinger, etc. This is "distribution of weight back to the trailers axels with said method proven by members via the use of CAT scales and designers of both the Hensley and PropPride systems.

4. Your trucks payload = stuff in\on the truck plus your tongue weight.

5. Subtract this figure from max payload.

Depending on this final figure, you may be anywhere from "close to max payload" to "clearly exceeding max payload".

Now ask yourself, perhaps you do want to upgrade those springs and shocks....

Again, not judging your existing rig or setup, just some facts that might help you make the right decision on how to best move forward with your current dilemma as posted.

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Old 04-17-2014, 02:36 PM   #5
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Now ask yourself, perhaps you do want to upgrade those springs and shocks....

Keep in mind, that increasing the spring rate of the springs on a tow vehicle, progressively defeats the purpose of a load equalizing hitch.

The same progressive defeat happens when air shocks or air bags are inflated above the minimum pressure.

Those tests were done in 1970.

For those that are in doubt, observe the decrease in the bend of the hitch bars when spring rates are increase.

However, that doesn't apply to the Equalizer bars, since they bend next to nothing, no matter what. Tests confirm that as well.

If a torsion bar is not stressed, it's bend cannot happen.

Simple Physics.

No bend, no work.

Andy
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Old 04-17-2014, 03:19 PM   #6
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If you do not have a rear stabilizer bar that would be my first investment.They are very inexpensive and easy to install.Bilstein shocks are the only way to go.Whenever I buy a new truck I toss the factory shocks intermediately and instal Bilstein.I put the 5100's on my 2012 F350 and they changed they way the truck handled and rode.
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Old 04-17-2014, 04:38 PM   #7
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Another way to get at it would be to weigh each truck axle with it not hooked up and with it hooked up. That will give you the numbers you need to work with.
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Old 04-18-2014, 09:47 AM   #8
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Thanks for all the information. I obviously need to get to a scale and weigh it both hooked-up and not. I may go ahead and replace the shocks before I go through this as it is 6 years old. How did you pick the 5100 Bilstein's on the F-350 (Moflash) ??
Has anyone done anything to the transmission like a shift kit to improve the closeness of the shifts?
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Old 04-18-2014, 10:42 AM   #9
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While we tow our AS with my F-250, my wife's 2007 Lincoln LT 5.4 and 3.73, is setup just like yours. We have pulled our AS short distances with her LT and it does just fine, but if I was really going to tow heavy with the LT (F-150), I'd also add a set of Firestone air bags. This setup with the Bilsteins, will allow you to stay level and absorb the "interstate hop". I have a set on my F-250 and it really helps. The rubber air bags keep the bouncing to a smoothness vs the abrupt bounce with just springs. In addition, I highly recommend the Transgo Shift Kit for your tranny. We added that to our LT and it made a world of difference in the shifting. You might also consider a Superchip programmer set up for towing as it will also help the performance on your 5.4 when towing. The Transgo costs about $50 and is installed with the pan down for the filter service. The Superchip costs about $300.
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