Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 05-18-2020, 09:36 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
arctictraveller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,297
Shocks like bump stops

Bump stops n shocks

My rear shocks have needed rebuilding twice now and I decided I needed to get to the bottom of the problem. I sent them off to a race shop in Murrieta, and then had a great talk with the suspension guy. I wanted to know if they showed any sign of bottoming out, and he said the internals were all fine with the exception of the worn out oil. But, he said when shocks bottom out it tends ruin the bushings at the bottom. Both mine were shot, and in addition the mounting bracket holes were very egg shaped. So, despite being really bad at math, I did some calculations and determined I needed to move my bump stops down about 4inches to prevent bottoming out on the shock instead. Ive been paying more attention to bump stops for the last couple years, and lots of lifted vans I looked at still had the stops in the stock position, meaning its likely the shocks are acting as the stops. Mine has been like that since I bought it. It never really seemed to be an issue as I rarely bottom out the rear, but there has been a few unexpected, high speed spine compressors. So, I made a couple stop extensions that bolt into the stock location, and welded some thick washers to the shock mounts.
Since the shocks never leaked, it seems that extended time on washboard tends to overheat the oil. There are several answers, each one more expensive than the next. First up would be a remote reservoir on the same 2.0 size shock, proving additional oil volume and surface area for cooling. Next might be a bigger shock like a 2.5 Sadly, Fox doesnt make a 2.5 that would be a direct bolt in to my current set-up. They can get close, but Id have to do some modifications, and if Im already making modifications,, why not go for a really big upgrade. I drive on so much washboard, any improvement would be welcome. So, the guy in Murrieta has quotes out for a couple different options, but most manufactures are currently very slow making and shipping products, so he rebuilt the old ones in the meantime. I welded heavy washers over the holes, and built new bump stops. Hopefully, the next time the shocks cook the oil, Ill have a new set up. Meanwhile, if I could just quit driving on washboard roads..yea right.
Attached Thumbnails
IMG_0913.jpg   IMG_0914.jpg  
__________________

__________________
Arctic Traveller
KC6TNI
2001 GTRV
Advanced 4wd
Agile Ride improvement package
arctictraveller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 04:46 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Twoxentrix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Annapolis, Maryland
Posts: 1,466
Garage
Good info, now you’ve awakened my curiosity - another thing I’ll need to inspect as well.
__________________

__________________
TwoXentrix
"AWOL"
Twoxentrix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 08:43 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
REDOVAL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Lomita, CA
Posts: 685
Garage
Ahhh, welcome to my world. In my constant quest to make my van do things offroad it should not, we have been forced to optimize all aspects of the suspension system. Regarding the rear shocks, mounts and bump stops I've spent most of this year under the van getting this right and I'm quite relieved to say we found a good solution.

Here are the components currently on the van-

Leaf Springs- Custom Weldtec Designs long travel leafs

Shocks- Sway-A-Way 2.5"x 8" stroke external reservoir shocks with custom valving and pressure. I have rebuilt these shocks no fewer than 5 times this year to get them "right". This is the second set of these in the rear as we had one shock explode on Mojave Road in December during a very heavy whoop section and a careless attitude toward mechanical sympathy. We will be upgrading these to custom King or Fox bypass units with external adjustments.

Shock mounts- In the effort to offroad at speeds greater than average and not really care what the conditions are under the van the stock rear crossmember failed in grand fashion breaking in half and cracking all over the place. I made a replacement custom crossmember that was not quite robust enough and it failed several times before it ended up in the trash can as well. We finally landed on a set of Carli Suspension rear mounts designed for a Superduty pickup. They weren't easy to install and did require some work but they have survived now for about 500 miles of very heavy offroad use between April and May.

Bump Stops- The stock bump stops are worthless and should be upgraded on every lifted van across the board in my opinion. Dropping them down is nice but they are very very harsh in their damping characteristics. I made custom mounts to adapt universal Daystar products polyurethane single stud mounts. Initially we used a set of 4.5" tall by 2.5" wide units but they limited travel too much for our setup so we swapped them for the 3" tall by 2.5" versions and they are perfect. It is very important to note that bump stops have to be optimized for each individual setup if you are looking to get the most out of the system. In my world...every inch of controllable travel helps. We will be changing these out at some point soon enough for hydraulic bump units that are more commonly used for heavier offroading.

Limit Straps- This is still an in-process activity for us but remember that shocks should never be the limiting item in a suspension system. Our front end is strapped at just over 13" of travel and keeps everything properly controlled when we leave the ground....happens very frequently for us. The rear straps simply need to be bolted back on for us (we were hesitating to get them done as the shocks/mounts were in so much limbo).

I realize my needs in a van suspension are quite different than most, but I feel the knowledge gained from these activities can greatly benefit even the heaviest of camping rigs. Keeping up with current generation Ford Raptors and other legit prerunners isn't easy to do, but this current setup allows us a ton of capability in the group. This setup is very smooth offroad in most conditions and we have actually been increasing the compression damping and will be going to coilover in front to open up more flexibility for spring rate and preload adjustments.

Scott Thompson
Vantage Optics
Attached Thumbnails
20200111_110807.jpg   20200414_191551.jpg   20200414_171036.jpg   20200510_094838[1].jpg   PhotoGrid_1589131417495[1].jpg  

20200418_171150[1].jpg  
__________________
2002 Ford E350 V10 Traveler
Vantage Optics Headlights
www.VantageOptics.com
REDOVAL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 09:10 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
vandiesel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 618
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by REDOVAL View Post
Ahhh, welcome to my world. In my constant quest to make my van do things offroad it should not, we have been forced to optimize all aspects of the suspension system. Regarding the rear shocks, mounts and bump stops I've spent most of this year under the van getting this right and I'm quite relieved to say we found a good solution.

Here are the components currently on the van-

Leaf Springs- Custom Weldtec Designs long travel leafs

Shocks- Sway-A-Way 2.5"x 8" stroke external reservoir shocks with custom valving and pressure. I have rebuilt these shocks no fewer than 5 times this year to get them "right". This is the second set of these in the rear as we had one shock explode on Mojave Road in December during a very heavy whoop section and a careless attitude toward mechanical sympathy. We will be upgrading these to custom King or Fox bypass units with external adjustments.

Shock mounts- In the effort to offroad at speeds greater than average and not really care what the conditions are under the van the stock rear crossmember failed in grand fashion breaking in half and cracking all over the place. I made a replacement custom crossmember that was not quite robust enough and it failed several times before it ended up in the trash can as well. We finally landed on a set of Carli Suspension rear mounts designed for a Superduty pickup. They weren't easy to install and did require some work but they have survived now for about 500 miles of very heavy offroad use between April and May.

Bump Stops- The stock bump stops are worthless and should be upgraded on every lifted van across the board in my opinion. Dropping them down is nice but they are very very harsh in their damping characteristics. I made custom mounts to adapt universal Daystar products polyurethane single stud mounts. Initially we used a set of 4.5" tall by 2.5" wide units but they limited travel too much for our setup so we swapped them for the 3" tall by 2.5" versions and they are perfect. It is very important to note that bump stops have to be optimized for each individual setup if you are looking to get the most out of the system. In my world...every inch of controllable travel helps. We will be changing these out at some point soon enough for hydraulic bump units that are more commonly used for heavier offroading.

Limit Straps- This is still an in-process activity for us but remember that shocks should never be the limiting item in a suspension system. Our front end is strapped at just over 13" of travel and keeps everything properly controlled when we leave the ground....happens very frequently for us. The rear straps simply need to be bolted back on for us (we were hesitating to get them done as the shocks/mounts were in so much limbo).

I realize my needs in a van suspension are quite different than most, but I feel the knowledge gained from these activities can greatly benefit even the heaviest of camping rigs. Keeping up with current generation Ford Raptors and other legit prerunners isn't easy to do, but this current setup allows us a ton of capability in the group. This setup is very smooth offroad in most conditions and we have actually been increasing the compression damping and will be going to coilover in front to open up more flexibility for spring rate and preload adjustments.

I can reproduce these bump stop mounts and make them available to sell if people are interested as I saved the design and it has proven reliable. I can be persuaded to reproduce the shock mount adapters for the Carli units, but be warned that removing the stock crossmember is quite the process as it is riveted in place and really likes its home. The stock crossmemer is also integral for hanging the exhaust system so that needs to be considered as well.

Scott Thompson
Vantage Optics
Scott, Thanks for the great R&D. You cause me to spend $$.

Brad
__________________
2001 Ford RB 7.3 Quadvan (sold)
2006 Sportsmobile EB Transformer 6.0
vandiesel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 09:24 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
REDOVAL's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: Lomita, CA
Posts: 685
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by vandiesel View Post
Scott, Thanks for the great R&D. You cause me to spend $$.

Brad
Always a pleasure, glad someone benefits out of my struggles!

Scott Thompson
Vantage Optics
__________________
2002 Ford E350 V10 Traveler
Vantage Optics Headlights
www.VantageOptics.com
REDOVAL is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 10:16 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
arctictraveller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,297
Interesting info Scott. First off, installing King bypass shocks would take up a huge amount of room, Have you found ones that will fit in the stock amount of space available? Next, I'm a bit confused, your rear axle seems to be in the stock position, very close to the frame, with only a couple inches of travel, is there no lift in the rear? If the new springs lifted the rear, did you adjust the length of the stops or did the shocks have adequate travel for the new position? Your rear springs look to be sacked out, was this prior to installing the Weldtech springs? As for limiting straps, your talking just about the front right? To keep the springs from falling out? Don't the leaf springs in the rear prevent excess droop without straps? Since I only bottom out the rear by mistake, the stock, hard rubber stops should work fine, but a set of hydraulic bumps would be really nice, but the amount of fabrication to get them in would be a lot of work for little benefit in my case. Your new bumps look to be bolted directly into the stock position, any photos of the new mounts?
__________________
Arctic Traveller
KC6TNI
2001 GTRV
Advanced 4wd
Agile Ride improvement package
arctictraveller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 10:19 AM   #7
Senior Member
 
rallypanam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: San Francisco/Nevada City
Posts: 3,702
Jeff, you need to go hydraulic!
Attached Thumbnails
89CE7E8C-2420-496F-988A-13451E2F365E.jpg  
rallypanam is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 10:37 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
arctictraveller's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 3,297
Quote:
Originally Posted by rallypanam View Post
Jeff, you need to go hydraulic!
Fascinating, any links to that set-up? I'm sure it's totally custom, but the bracket looks great, and since I don't have a shop, I'm really limited in what I can fabricate.
__________________
Arctic Traveller
KC6TNI
2001 GTRV
Advanced 4wd
Agile Ride improvement package
arctictraveller is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 11:05 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
carringb's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Corvallis, OR
Posts: 4,616
If your shocks are bottoming out, you might need shorter shocks. Broken crossmembers also sound like a too-long-shock-body problem.

I previously has the bump stops Redoval shows (the new ones) but Sumo springs are the way to go. They are more progressive than the Daystars, and have more overall compressions, while being self-damping so you don't get "kick" when you hit them.
__________________
2000 E450 dually V10 wagon
carringb is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-19-2020, 11:56 AM   #10
Senior Member
 
rallypanam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: San Francisco/Nevada City
Posts: 3,702
I’m quite certain they don’t make anything for a van... but they do make universal kits that might work:

https://www.iconvehicledynamics.com/
__________________

rallypanam is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

» Sportsmobile Registry

Sporty

BusTalker

Agnes

alta825
Add your Sportsmobile
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sportsmobile SIP or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:34 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×