There are 3 axis that come into play in handling.

  1. Up/Down
  2. Side to Side - yawl
  3. Roll - Sway

Now in simplistic terms:

  • Item 1 is controlled by the shocks
  • Item 2 is controlled by trac bars like UltraTrac
  • Item 3 is controlled by sway bars

But, the following will have a big influence on what you need to add and how much is added.

  1. Coach wheel base
  2. Suspension style - coil springs or leaf springs
  3. Coach weight
  4. Weight distribution
  5. Over hang - stretched chassis
  6. Tire size and pressure
  7. Roll center

One last thing that RV owners look at is steering wheel correction. A steering stabilizer provides some relief from consistent steering wheel correction. You might consider:


Do you need Shocks?

As discussed in the UltraTrac section, shock absorbers do make a difference in how you coach handles.

When I bought my coach it had OEM Monroe's installed as my OEM chassis, as the chasiss was manufactured in December of 2003 and the coach was delivered in April of 2004. Bilstein shocks where not integrated into the production line until about April of 2004. So, when I drove my coach home from the dealer, a 3-hour drive, through the Texas hill country I was not pleased. I had all I could do to keep it on the road, as I had to slow down from all the porpoising and constant steering correction. I just figured that after I got it loaded in road trim all the bouncing and steering correction would either stop or be greatly reduced. The bottom line after adding all our gear, full tank of gas, 1/4 tank of water, pilot/co-pilot onboard, getting it weighed, dropping the tire pressures from 110 lbs all around to 90/85 it was much better. But, I still had the tail wagging the dog problem, 18 wheeler push and was still porposing like crazy.

After a lot of phones calls and a lot of finger pointing between the OEM, the OEM Service Center, my Dealer and Newmar, I got Newmar to pay for a set for new set of Bilstein shocks. My reasoning was I had a 2004 coach that was advertised with Bilstein shocks as a standard option and I didn't get them along with the 50 degree steering upgrade. This made a world of difference, no more porpoising and less steering correction. But, it didn't fix the other problems.

These shocks give a very firm ride, too firm for some and ok for others.

Now if you want a softer ride and still get some feel of the road then Koni FSD's are for you. I bought a set from a friend who removed his Bilstein's installed the Knoi's. But, he felt that he lost the feel of the road and re-istalled the Blistein's. I installed them are they work perfect for me. I orginally left the Bilsteins on the rear.

 

 

 

 

 

But, on 8/6/2008 I installed Koni's on the rear. This change made the ride even more comfortable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now if you have a very long coach and a lot of weight in the rear the Koni Van Hool bus shock is for you.

This photo is from a 39' Gufstream on a W24 chassis. The owner swears by them. He says, "these shocks took all the bounce out of the rear". They are about twice the size of a Knoi FSD.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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