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Old 07-21-2011, 11:00 PM   #1
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Upgrade Suspension

Hi everyone. New to the forum. The owner of the company I work for has a 06 E350 Quadvan 4x4. My coworker and I have been doing maintenance and repairs recently. We noticed that the rear suspension of the van just isn't quite beefy enough to handle both the weight of the van (~10K lbs) and travel trailer (also very heavy). I'm looking to upgrade the rear suspension components. It currently has 4 leafs, bilstein shocks and what I believe is the "roadmaster active leaf kit". More leafs are necessary. Does anyone have airbags installed. How and where are they installed. There is not a lot of room with all of the extra's that Sportsmobile has installed. Thanks.
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Old 07-22-2011, 02:19 AM   #2
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

QuadVan routinely installs a Firestone F-series airbag kit into their heavier vans. It is outboard-mounted, using double-convuluted airbags. I don't know the part number, but QuadVan could tell you. It does not need much space.

Another option is Deaver Springs.
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Old 07-22-2011, 09:13 AM   #3
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

I have the Firestone E series kit installed on my 06 Quigley. Firestone make 2 kits for the Van. One sits on the leaf and has it's own bracket that you bolt to the frame rail, the other goes between the axle and chassis. Since Quigley like many other conversions put a block between the leaf and axle only latter kit will not work for me.

Kit is ride rite 2181, below is the install guide so you can see the parts.
http://www.firestoneip.com/site-resourc ... n/2181.pdf

This is the other kit
http://www.firestoneip.com/site-resourc ... n/2061.pdf

Since these don't leak and have fill schrader valves, there is no need to run a compressor and tank with these setups if you don't want to, I ran mine for 2 years without a tank or compressor & never needed to re-fill the system.

Replacing all the springs with Deaver seems to be the best option though if you can swallow the cost.
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Old 07-22-2011, 12:26 PM   #4
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

Thanks Sheep,

I've looked at airlift and add a leaf's. Airlift's setup will not work because the wiring to/from the generator, Starcool, house battery, inverter, and pretty much everything electronic is all run on the inside of the frame. Already have had issues with this design. The exhaust heat melted wiring and the ubolts from the axle have punctured wires causing them to short out.

I think the second link you provided may be the best but I would like to see pictures of it installed already. It looks like the installation instructions are generalized for any vehicle.
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Old 07-22-2011, 01:40 PM   #5
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

Sounds like you need to do a major wiring move anyway. Twogone did something to his rear Quigley springs, not sure if he wrote about it yet.
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Old 07-22-2011, 05:11 PM   #6
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

2181 is what I have on my van. Only issue is you have to keep an eye on the tabs that locate the lower plates. If those tabs bend, the plate can slide and the airbag will get a pinch-flat.

I strongly recommend against installing a setup that mounts under the van. These don't have enough travel, so you get excess rebound. Also, they replace you bumpstops. This is bad news off-road, especially if you have a problem with the airbag.
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Old 07-23-2011, 01:14 AM   #7
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

Airbags are ok, not knocking anyone that has them and find that they work. I had put them on our rig for a bit but took them off and got deaver to make me a set of springs. This eliminated the need for airbags and the lift blocks and has really transformed the ride. I took the advice and recommendations for Deaver from lots of others on the forum, search Deaver, there is an active thread going now. Good luck.
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Old 07-24-2011, 02:04 PM   #8
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

Sounds like leafs are the way to go. It does get taken off road although it's not anything serious. I'm sure I can find this elsewhere on here but what does the Deaver leafs do to the ride quality, ride height, etc.
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Old 07-24-2011, 03:27 PM   #9
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Re: Upgrade Suspension

Depends on where you started, how flat, etc, however I got 2-3" I think (inches I didn't want) and the ride quality is totally different- dump truck vs. score truck.
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