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PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 11:24 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2005 4:08 pm
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Location: Orlando, FL, Area
Nobody has ever commented on the following post from liginbf which sheds much light on the banging rear axle and jarring ride of the Born Free.

http://www.bornfreervclub.org/bulletin_ ... light=#top

Dean

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Dean and Jan Preston
2013 24-ft Rear Bath
2014 Chevrolet Equinox LS AWD


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PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 11:43 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 13, 2006 11:26 am
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Location: Tuolumne California
Thanks for the input Dean.

I have been wondering for some time if the Super Springs would tend to lessen the rear axle noise. Sounds like one could remove the air bags if Super Springs were installed. The added benefit of less tail draging would also be a great benefit.

Rob Beery
2003 24RB


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PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 11:25 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 20, 2005 11:46 am
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Location: Tucson, Arizona
We have a 2005 24RB and do not have the "banging" you describe, we tow a Jeep Liberty so maybe that helps in smoothing out the ride and I suppose the roads are better out here in the West. We also drive at 55mph.
Steve


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PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 1:50 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:31 pm
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Location: Jacksonville, Oregon
I had Super Springs installed recently at Hendersons Lineup in Grants Pass, Oregon. It is by far the best modification I have done to our 2004 24RB. No more bottoming out and the back end is a inch or more higher.

Dean

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PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 2:02 pm 
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Location: Orlando, FL, Area
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The rear axle on my 2002 E450 does not "bottom out." It BANGS on any differing road surface or crack. I have never had a problem with my coach "bottoming out." Only with the severe jarring and banging of the rear axle, with any amount of air in the airbags, and at any speed above 20 mph. Even when one airbag was running flat, the rear axle banged. The problem is not airbag related, it is rear axle suspension design related.

It doesn't sound like the air bags are bottoming out, but the air bag brackets that are attached to the frame and to the rear axle are hitting each other and only allowing about an inch of rear axle spring travel. Theoretically, if the air bags and their brackets were taken off and super springs were installed, there would be no more banging of the rear axle. Otherwise, the air bag brackets would have to be correctly installed so that they didn't hit themselves when the rear axle went over a bump.

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2013 24-ft Rear Bath
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PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 2:43 pm 
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Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2005 8:05 pm
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Location: Spencer, IA
The Ford E450 gives a rough ride on rough road surfaces because the rear suspension on this chassis as supplied by Ford is a relatively stiff leaf spring suspension similar to that on a truck. And since probably at least 80% of all Class-C motorhomes produced in the last 15 years have been built on this chassis, the rough ride is not limited to Born Free coaches, all other brands suffer the same ride. As I have noted before, the rough ride is consistent with the rougher roads mostly located on the eastern half of the US.

I have owned two E450 based Born Free's over the last 12 years and I don't think I have ever had mine 'bottom out'. If that is really happening to your coach, you need to find out why and get it fixed. Sagging leaf springs and/or worn out shocks could be the cause along with low or no air pressure in your air bags.

Also, some owners seem to want to run the maximum rated 80 psi pressure in their rear E rated tires. Have your coach weighed in all four corners in your normal down the road running setup and then consult the inflation charts for the necessary tire pressure. That is, don't inflate the tires to any pressure higher than necessary - doing this will give you a softer ride. On my 2002 BF 26' RSB coach, I run 75 psi in the rear tires per the inflation chart.

There are modified rear suspension systems out there for the E350 & E450 chassis that can improve the ride including the Super Springs mentioned by others. Probably one of the best known companies is Mor/ryde based in Elkhart, IN. They offer a RL Suspension System that fits the Ford E350 and E450 chassis but usually not without required modifications in the case of the Born Free coaches because of the particular mounting location of water and LP tanks on our units. They have recently introduced a RS Suspension System that fits the Born Free coaches better.

For those going to the National Rally in Creede, CO in June, Mor/ryde has indicated that they will attend as a vendor showing their suspension systems.

You can visit their website at the following clickable URL address: http://www.morryde.com/php/products/suspensions/motorhomes/index.php

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Bill Hemme - Spencer, Iowa
E-mail: whemme@earthlink.net
2002 Born Free (Ford E-450 V10) 26' RSB
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PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 7:24 pm 
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Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 3:13 pm
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Location: Prescott, AZ
I just made similar comments on thread of man considering Sprinter or BF.
Speaking just for me we had about 70000 miles on a 2001 23RK, kept the air bags at minimum pressure and had no complaints about any suspension noise, ever. Original shocks were never replaced. Granted most, but not all, driving was west of the Mississippi, so perhaps others have experienced worse roads. We did go to AK and no ride complaints on that trip either. Our 2011 24 RB has only been driven a few hundred miles by me, but at this point I would say the Super Springs have improved ride.

Granted smoothness of ride is like beauty, a state of mind, so I just may have a higher pain threshold. However, it is troubling that people are reporting "banging" in the suspension. If there is metal to metal contact, something is badly wrong in my view and it would seem that a capable truck suspension shop would be able to quickly diagnose and correct the cause.

Ralph

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Ralph
2011 24RB
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PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 7:47 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:31 pm
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Location: Jacksonville, Oregon
I never felt that it was metal to metal and probably not bottoming out but a very hard jolt.

Before the Super Springs I tried various pressure settings on the factory air bags and then changed to air bags that can be adjusted from the cab.
Still not satisfactory and almost to the point of making a coach change.

I should mention after weighing all four corners the rear tire pressure was reduced from 80 to 75 psi. I'm sure this helped also.

When installing Super Springs on a 24 RB the airbags must go.

As I understand it Super Springs are installed at the factory now. That should be a clue.

Regards Dean

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PostPosted: Sat May 14, 2011 8:39 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 13, 2009 3:08 pm
Posts: 47
Location: St. Augustine, FL
Just some history,after trying different fixes ( shocks,bushings ) the good folks at Henderson's Lineup suggested to check the air bag brackets. I found significant damage to both sets of brackets. After repair and re-alignment ( critical on lower bracket ) the ride was vastly improved. My 2010 has super springs and is a great improvement over the air bags.

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2010 22 RSK


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