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Author Topic: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure  (Read 4242 times)

tomrosa

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Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« on: May 19, 2015, 09:20:43 AM »
Have you seen this before?
The -Air Lift 88390 LoadLifter 5000 Ultimate Air Spring Kit with Internal Jounce Bumper - mounts to the bump stop/lift block on my 2001 F250 4WD LB. Our campground was down a unmaintained dirt road with a few potholes. I carry 2001 Fleetwood 9E camper that's 2800# wet. And flat tow a CJ5 - no tong weight.
Air Lifts technician says he has only see 4 times and only with excessive loads.
Do I replace the bump stop/lift block with an OEM unit?
Is their a stronger after market bump stop/lift block?
« Last Edit: May 19, 2015, 09:40:42 AM by tomrosa »

oldme

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2015, 08:16:22 PM »
It appears that the u-bracket slipped.
That would only be possible if it were not torqued to spec when the unit was installed, or the bottom nuts somehow came loose.

Lou Schneider

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2015, 12:46:20 AM »
Or the hard bottoming out on potholes just overpowered the bolts and let the bracket slip.  The technician said he saw the same thing happen when heavy loads bottomed out hard, I'll bet large chuckholes made the springs bottom out just as hard.

driftless shifter

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2015, 09:43:36 AM »
Looks like a poor design to me. The centerline of the Air lift is way out toward the end of the bumpstop, in fact the bottom mount appears to extend the beyond the bumpstop outer edge. Tremendous leverage involved when all that weight is bumping around. Is that a lift block under the bumpstop lifting it up off the axle tube? Or does it just look that way? If the bump stop was originally intended to rest atop the axle tube that'd be the cause of it failing. Could fail and bend even with out the Airlift under off road conditions with full load with the bump stop just sticking out in the air like that.

Bill
Bill & Nan
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93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
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I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

Rene T

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2015, 10:03:39 AM »
I'm trying to figure out why the carriage bolts are so long. The nut is still on the bolt but is no where near where it should be once it was tight. Did the nut strip or was it ever tightened.  Looking at where the nut should be, it would be up about 1 1/2" from where it's at now.  :o

Also there is another bolt in the picture that I can't figure out where it goes. The bolt is horizontal and goes through the 90 degree bracket. It looks like it's just hanging there in the hole.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2015, 10:08:20 AM by Rene T »
Rene & Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

denmarc

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #5 on: May 21, 2015, 10:31:09 AM »
Also there is another bolt in the picture that I can't figure out where it goes. The bolt is horizontal and goes through the 90 degree bracket. It looks like it's just hanging there in the hole.

That's because that is what it is. A u-bolt that has fallen out of place from supporting the furthest end of the bumpstop. Also, it looks like the bumpstop has a rusty crack in it. If that is where the u-bolt was mounted, it may be the weak spot in the chain.

I'm guessing. But going by the pic, here goes...
I'm thinking that maybe a pothole was hit a little too hard on that wheel. As the wheel fell into the hole, the u-bolt either broke (maybe over tightened?) and/or fell away from its mount. As a result, no more support on the far end of the bumpstop. The added stress on the bumpstop was more than it was designed for with additional pressure by the add-on air bag. Therefore, it failed.
« Last Edit: May 21, 2015, 02:04:26 PM by denmarc »
Mark

1994 Jayco Eagle 370FB on 24 acres of paid off paradise in Michigan.

You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
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Rene T

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #6 on: May 21, 2015, 10:34:33 AM »
Apparently the horizontal bolt I referred to goes to another support bracket on the other side of the spring assembly. I looked at the installation manual.
Rene & Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

driftless shifter

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #7 on: May 21, 2015, 12:21:16 PM »
Was the Ubolt that has fallen away go over the outer edge of the bumpstop , where the rusty line appears. Clamping it to the axle tube with a big air gap because of what appears to be a lift block under the bumpstop? Did Ford intend the bumpstop to be hanging to in mid air or is that block between the bumpstop and spring perch an optical illusion? The rust lines on the bumpstop and the axle tube show where the detached Ubolt was, before the damage happened. Me thinks if the bumpstop belongs resting on the axle tube, it is either poor engineering or a bad installation. I'd like to see a stock leaf spring photo. I bet the lift block should be on top of the bumpstop not under it.

Bill
Bill & Nan
(o\_!_/o)
93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
USN '76-'80, 1 boat, USS Blandy, DD 943.
I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

Rene T

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #8 on: May 21, 2015, 01:07:39 PM »
It looks to me and I'm wondering if it does to anyone else the block which sits on the axle is tapered. Is that  right?  The right side which the U-Bolt would clamp appears to be not as thick  the side adjacent to the spring pack. Is it a optical illusion?
Rene & Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

ironrat

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2015, 01:18:02 PM »
How about another picture of the other side not broken?
Manuel & Denise
2001 Safari Trek 2830
8.1 WorkHorse
Loma Rica, Calif

tomrosa

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #10 on: May 22, 2015, 09:17:41 PM »
The factory Ford lift block/bump-stop broke. The Air Lift brackets apply all the force to the bump stop.
I replaced the factory Ford lift block/bump-stop hoping this was a freak break and not a design flaw with trying to put 5000 Lbs of load leveling on a bump stop. This is what the setup looks like, unbroken. I have also attached the broken factory Ford lift block/bump stop and a stock one.

I'm starting not to like this design, but this is the only one I found that sits inside the frame rail allowing a fifth wheel plate to be mounted on the outside of the frame. In case I ever want to step up form a camper.

I believe the factory Ford lift block/bump-stops are designed to alter the truck height with out altering the rubber bump-stop location. F250 factory Ford lift block/bump stop is 2". Other trucks are different heights. If the factory Ford lift block/bump stop was not installed, the rubber bump stop would hit the axle.

Or the hard bottoming out on potholes just overpowered the bolts and let the bracket slip.  The technician said he saw the same thing happen when heavy loads bottomed out hard, I'll bet large chuckholes made the springs bottom out just as hard.
-- Agree. Unfortunately I live in California. ;)

Rene T

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #11 on: May 22, 2015, 09:46:45 PM »
Now this makes much more sense as to what it should look like. The smaller U Bolt actually holds the bracket for the shock. Now I can see why the long carriage bolts appear sooooo long.

I would manufacture a stop block or at least a support leg for the existing stop block that would sit right on the axle that way all the forces would be applied directly on top of the axle.  Maybe a piece of 1/2' plate steel welded to the top of the axle and running vertically under the existing stop block.  1/2' thick X 3" Wide X ?? High.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2015, 10:01:58 PM by Rene T »
Rene & Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

driftless shifter

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #12 on: May 23, 2015, 10:16:51 AM »
Put a stack of hockey pucks between outer end of bumpstop and axle tube for added support. Up to you to engineer a way to hold in place. Maybe a Ubolt or some kind of cage.

Bill
Bill & Nan
(o\_!_/o)
93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
USN '76-'80, 1 boat, USS Blandy, DD 943.
I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

Rene T

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #13 on: May 23, 2015, 10:29:12 AM »
Put a stack of hockey pucks between outer end of bumpstop and axle tube for added support. Up to you to engineer a way to hold in place. Maybe a Ubolt or some kind of cage.

Bill

Got me thinking which can be dangerous at times. How about a piece of solid round bar which would sit horizontally on top of the axle and slid in under stop block. Then hold it onto the axle with a U-bolt.
Rene & Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

Sam!

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #14 on: May 23, 2015, 12:36:32 PM »
here is how firestone sets their lower bag mount directly to the axle surface. seem like you need to support it in a similar fashion.
http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s256/sale12345/DSCN0085.jpg

also your airride's have an internal bump stop that may be to tall and always sitting pushing on it will force the bracket to break. I would look in to removing it or some how setting the air bag lower so it does not contact too easily. but that would take some measuring loaded, unloaded, and fabrication to set the bag at it's most center of travel location.

 
1997 Serro Scotty 25' Diesel Cummins 4x4
2005 Dodge Ram 3500 Diesel SRW
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driftless shifter

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #15 on: May 23, 2015, 06:09:35 PM »
Got me thinking which can be dangerous at times. How about a piece of solid round bar which would sit horizontally on top of the axle and slid in under stop block. Then hold it onto the axle with a U-bolt.

I suggest hockey pucks because they are tough yet have a resiliency. A steel bar might ultimately crack the axle tube where the hockey pucks would deform, hockey pucks are used for home made body lifts for this reason.

Bill
Bill & Nan
(o\_!_/o)
93 bounder 34, chevy chassis
couple of aircooled vw's, 1 fast(sold), 1 reliable(sold).  Dubless : (
USN '76-'80, 1 boat, USS Blandy, DD 943.
I'm an analog guy in a digital age.

tomrosa

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #16 on: May 24, 2015, 11:44:55 PM »
So here is my solution. Luckily their were two clean 1/4" holes on the corners of the bag plate to make this bracket 'bolt on'. The 'Rosa strut' is only required to share the load and eliminate twisting off the factory Ford lift block/bump-stops. Its great I can fab brackets, it sucks a $350 kit requires modifying. I guess time will tell.

Two reasons I chose these bags over others 1) With the internal bump-stop you don't have to keep a minimum pressure to retain the lifetime warranty. Unfortunately I believe the bump-stops are the problem They are too firm and too tall. 2) This set-up doesn't require brackets on the outside of the frame rail which leaves it open for mounting fifth wheel frame mount (if I ever move away from my truck camper).

here is how firestone sets their lower bag mount directly to the axle surface. seem like you need to support it in a similar fashion.
http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s256/sale12345/DSCN0085.jpg
I like that mount.

tomrosa

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #17 on: May 24, 2015, 11:49:22 PM »
>:(  I just noticed that carriage bolt isn't seated. *sigh* Back under the truck.

Seon

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Re: Have you seen this before? Suspension failure
« Reply #18 on: June 21, 2015, 09:06:04 AM »
Appears you have access to a welder so why not tack a weld to the exisiting bracket too.
Lance Lite 186
Lake Camanche, CA

 

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