200 SERIES LANDCRUISER SUSPENSION UPGRADES

 
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 11:02 am    Post subject: 200 SERIES LANDCRUISER SUSPENSION UPGRADES Reply with quote

Alright Friends, I do a lot of the R&D and since the Totota 200 Series V-8 Diesel is our most common tow vehicle, here is the latest on the latest regarding suspension upgrades on what I am doing to mine and why. This is the process of evolving from the 100 Series on to the 200 Series, (and similar for other Japanese tow vehicles)

We have now done a 2011 200 Series Twin Turbo Diesel VX suspension upgrade, and I am now towing more new vans with my 2012 Sahara than anyone.... These vans in the picture were all moved 20 minutes on the highway to a Live In Storage Site in just the last few days...



There is a tiny feeling of sway tendency in ANY new van if you hit the rolling road or potholes, especially when it is unloaded and light on the ball weight. You really want about 10% on the hitch, and when they are new we are likely to be no more than the recommended minimum of 5%. Out of these eight Bushtrackers moved by my stock Sahara in the past three days, four or five of them had uncomfortable sway at about 100 kph. It was only a 4-6" wallow after a pothole or something, but it was scary enough. It was high stress, and I set up the brake controller so if it got of hand I could lightly put on the brakes and snap back the trailer, using it to straighten out any sway tendency... Why does this happen?

Toyota has to sell these vehicles to city people, and ride comfort is a necessity when competing against the Mercedes and BMW sort of luxury 4x4 cars. While IMO the 200 Series is far more capable due to robustness and ground clearance plus availability of Service in the Bush, it still has to compete on ride in the major city dweller market. Because of this, just like the coil sprung 100 Series, the stock original Toyota 200 Series spring pack is mushy for comfort. The problem is that in harmony with any tiny van sway, the mushy suspension amplifies the situation with harmonic motion (engineering term that means to act in harmony feeding more energy to it). I was going to wait until ARB finished designing the new bull bar for the 2012, before getting the suspension upgrade, but now I have decided NOT to wait and have scheduled it for next week.

Matthew had noted the same problem, and he reports the suspension upgrade minimized it by 90%. Why ARB? My 25 years in Australia doing this and follow others who have tried the other Brands, ( in my studied opinion) all the other Brands can work but ARB does it the best and it lasts the life of the vehicle, where others have to be redone in a couple of years, but do your own research. On the rear Matthew with a baby, went with a “Medium” about 100-150 more than stock (lighter than the heavier 200-400-600 kg packs) and 20 mm lift. In the front for both we are upgrading to carry an accessory package 100 kg bulbar and winch plus 50 mm lift to sit more level… In the rear of my Sahara, I have decided to go to the 200 kg pack on the rear with the 35mm lift. Why, because the new van empty and light on the ball is the most dangerous time and that is about all I am towing these days. I want the firm control.

Go see your chosen Suspension People for advice, but with extra spares, Long Ranger tanks, boat on top, that kind of thing will put you into the higher spring packs accordingly in the 200-400-600 kg range.. Like I said I am electing the 200 kg rear, where Matthew got the Mediums... About 100-150 kg more than stock original. I will give the empirical results, same vehicle, fridge in back, same road, same day, same time, and note the differences here in this Topic next week...

Yes, the WDH (Weight Distribution Hitch) we strongly recommend on all larger vans from about 18' and up will help greatly. For more information on this, SEARCH button on top of this Forum. In my case, I am not using the WDH as it is too much to hook up the a-frame brackets when I am changing vans I am towing on a daily basis. So yes, mine is the worst case scenario, however, I am a Professional Driver in capability even with Big Rigs going Interstate... Now for you: If you are coming from a long way away to pick up your Bushtracker, you would be advised to consult with ARB (I consider the best after 40 years at this, 25 years at this in Australia) and anyway I stongly suggest if you are coming a long way: Get this done prior to picking up your van for the trip home.. Safety, low stress, and piece of mind... Get the suspension upgrade done before you pick up your new van. You can even get it done when you are here, as ARB Maroochydore have provided excellent Service over the years..

On the road, Ranger...


Last edited by Bushtracker on Mon Sep 30, 2013 3:55 pm; edited 11 times in total
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 2:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve

Have you any comments to make regarding the Lovells suspension upgrade which can take you to 3800kg GVM.

Cheers
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 12, 2012 2:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, most of the major Brands have a GVM upgrade available to various degrees.... And have had for a number of years since ARB upgraded my stretched 75 Series to something like that about 16 years ago.

However: You still need the State Modification Plate added to make it legal, and your Rego reflecting that.. And it does not affect your Manufacturers Towing Capacity, only the maximum you can carry on board...

Cheers, stg
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 14, 2012 8:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe here is some more help for those considering which of the upgrades to do:

The "Medium" ARB suspension is around 100-150 kg carrying capacity more than the original, I guess medium means midway from the stock springs to the weight carrying springs in the 200-400-600 classes. Matthew said he was dissappointed by the firmness, in that it lost the luxury car feel his VX had before the upgrade. However, now he says that the edge comes off, they run in, and now the ride is acceptable even when he is running empty. He says this is a necessity, for the stability towing. I let him drive mine down down a poorly maintained patched road, with him driving so I could study the feel. Then five minutes later we went down he same road with his, again with me sitting studying the feel.. In my personal view, not many people would pick the difference. Maybe just a tad firmer, but only just...

Now, that medium is a 19mm coil of 8 turns. The first stage of the weight carrying 200-400-600 coils, the 200 kg that I have opted for is 20 mm and 8.9 full turns. The Engineering is designed so again, the difference between the "Medium" before the weight carrying 200 kg coils, is supposed to be near negligible. The Manager of ARB in Maroochydore Les, says that again while he could tell the difference in firmness, he does not think that most people would pick it.

The added turns of the coil, with the temper of the coil, is supposed to make the ride very similar as the "Medium" intermediate coil before the weight carrying heavy coils of the 200 kg. I will not be able to confirm this, with side by side tests on the same road, same time, for about a month. This is because the 2012 new front end style 200 Series Bullbar will not be available from ARB until then. Winch and Bar will smooth the ride, and after a little driving to break it in, I will present the Empirical Tests, with my Wife judging as well...

Reports as I have them.... Regards, on the road Ranger
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aubs



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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 7:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Steve,

Would airbags over the original suspension make any difference, when loaded you pump them up and even the ride, when detached just let them down to ride back on the original suspension.

That way you can get the best of both worlds.

your thoughts?
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Aubs,

In the previous Landcruiser Model, what I elected for on the 100 Series was an intermediate spring pack, with the poly air bags inside. Loaded, pump them up to say 25 lbs, unloaded back to the 5 lbs for a comfortable ride unloaded.

The problem is, that in that situation I was still talking about the stiffer load carrying springs.... NOT the stock ones... Why? You want to stop the harmonic motion, and you do not want to just ride on the poly air bags as the air compresses and will give you the bounce effect. That bounce effect can be from side to side and aggravate the sway in the van that started with undulations in the road or potholes or something. You need to ride on the stiffer suspension upgrade springs, with the poly air just taking a bit of the load if needed. If you tried to run with the stock springs, you would be relying on the poly air bags to take almost all of the load.

Further, the ARB suspension comes with what I have experienced as the best Shocks on the market for the money, the Nitro-Charger ones... Nitrogen Charged, not overheated on oil until the seals fail.. Last look they were about $200 fitted or just a little over with the ARB Old Man Emu suspension. We have tried other Brands, without the same performance or longevity. On one such trip bounding across the Outback we used one well name Brand, wrecked them to useless by the time we got to W.A. That Company sent us ANOTHER well known Brand to get us home, and they were ruined by the time we got back from that R&D trip. We have tried them all, and the OME has proven to be the best with a dozen of our tow vehicles.

The point? You would be reliant on solely the air bags to carry the load, unsafe my experience. What if an air bag failed? You want them only to augment the load carry springs, not to carry the load themselves.. An aid, and to work you need the load carrying springs in the first place... You would also be reliant on the shocks, and bouncing on the air bags, and could rock side to side as the air compressed. Sorry, but this is STRONGLY not advised..

My choice was made from about 40 years in this kind of travel, 25 of which in the Outback... Regards, and on the road with the Ranger...


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 17, 2012 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have the OME 200kg springs and Nitrocharger shockies on my 200 Series.

I also put airbags in the rear springs but have come to the conclusion that they were a waste of money. The springs cope really well without them. I actually leave them with only 5psi in them these days.

I suspect that, when inflated, they would be detrimental because they would stiffen up the rear suspension and allow the shock from corrugations to be transmitted up to the hitch and ultimately cause problems there. That's something I don't want.

I won't be putting airbags in the next vehicle.
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 7:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well here it is, done with the bullbar and winch 100 kg over in the front with a 50 mm lift, (Bullbars release not for 6 weeks) and the 200 kg weight carrying springs in the rear, and NitroCharger Shocks... 50 mm lift: Now it looks more like an Outback vehicle than a Sahara luxury town car..



LOVE IT~! The ride is not severe at all, even without the winch and bullbar on the front. In fact, it feels a bit sporty with only about maybe 25% of the stock body roll... I LOVE IT ! This is definitely my recommendation for moderate packing of the 200 Series, but all I have is a fridge in the back and a briefcase sized tool kit, and small misc coming like belts and hoses before I go too far out Bush...

If you are a tool freak, or want more, like a drawer system loaded up, or extra cargo above and beyond what I am carrying then I would recommend the 400 kg springs. This would be for a small tinny, or Long Ranger extra fuel tanks, (no relation of mine), larger bumper, spare on a carrier, that sort of extra cargo then get the 400 kg set with the ARB corresponding GVM increase. Take their advice, but I am not sure you need to go to the top 600 kg springs unless you are REALLY loaded up, as that is more for fully loaded Cruiser, Mine Grade, four adults on board sort of thing.....

Now a funny for you: I picked up the Sahara, admired it there, and quite enjoyed the drive around yesterday and today... I came home, admired the new look in the driveway, then drove it to work.. Two days admiring it, and I completely forgot I ordered the snorkel and did not even notice until Bob at work said: "Hey, I like the look of the snorkel on it!" I had not even noticed, how funny is that! Laughing Laughing Laughing

After the double floods of 2012, where cars were floating down the street, and I was stuck for 3 1/2 hours just trying to get home, I am not going ANYWHERE without a snorkel again.. Just like on my last two 100 Series, all Troopcarriers, even my Mack 4x4, gotta have a snorkel..




Technical Note: Twin Turbos are at about 600 mm. You CANNOT make a water crossing with hot turbos or you will total the engine with fragmented turbo bits... You either are in deep flood water splashing on them and they are cool, or if they are dry you need to stop, raise the bonnet, and let them cool for maybe a 30 minute tea stop... VERY IMPORTANT... Particular to the 200 Series V-8, the Turbos are low and you will toast the whole engine driving into deep water with them hot...

On the road Ranger Wink


Last edited by Bushtracker on Wed Jun 20, 2012 12:41 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The Springs in this Topic are well worn in now, over 7000 kms on the clock.

I can confirm this is the way to go, unless you are going to load a drawer system waaay up with tools and such, the 200 kg over springs are still a very nice ride. Talked about enough in the previous Postings on this Topic.

Heavy loaded, and a big van... You might try the 400's. This is a very nice ride.. Wink

On the Road, Ranger
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:55 am    Post subject: Suspension 200 Series Reply with quote

Hi all,

Our suspension short story!

During May this year we collected our new BT 20’. On hitching up we found that our Toyota 200 series was somewhat lower at the back. We did notice before hand that the rear was a little lower than normal, but we were reasonably loaded traveling from Western Australia to collect our BT.

At the time of purchasing the 200 series we had a suspension upgrade done as part of the sale. This was based on our future needs (which included towing a caravan). The specification requested based on advice at the time was to install 100lb springs front and 400lb rear with OME nitrogen struts and shocks. No surprises here.

Since we purchased the 200 series we have installed front bull bar (steel), winch, rear drawers, roof rack and a long range tank ... standard goodies for off-road travel.

So why then is the back so low when we hooked up the BT. Long story but luckily there were experts around Maroochydore Qld who discovered that the rear springs were intermediates and not 400 lbs. So what happened? The original installers fitted incorrect springs to rear without our knowledge.

So how do we know? OME springs have a little tag attached to them that shows the spring coding. Fine if you work in the industry and know what you are looking at. Regarding the struts and shock absorbers, incorrect type were also installed (minor issue).

Back to the suspension. After more discussions, lots of phone calls, asking questions and reading BT Owners Forum, we eventually decided to fix the issue.

So what happened next? We had the vehicle completely redone in terms of suspension (our choice, others may of only just sorted the back springs). We installed new front and rear springs so they matched to produce the correct setup for vehicle and the BT. We opted again for 100lbs springs front (but with higher lift than previous), rear 200lbs with airbags and OME Nitrogen Sports struts/shocks.

We now have a completely new vehicle. Rides well and once the vehicle electronics and KDSS settled down with the new setup the BT towed very well. The vehicle sits nice and balanced with the front slightly lower than the back.

Lessons learnt: When a suspension upgrade has been done, check that the correct items have been installed. Get the installers to show what has been done. And yes we are liaising with the original installers to explain how this happened.

For us, time consuming trying to work out what was going on plus of course extra dosh to fix a problem. Thanks to the guys at ARB Maroochydore for doing the new install and BT for helping us with finalising the caravan/vehicle setup. Now traveled 8,000km and all is fine.

Something funny though. When we got home we put the 200 series in the carport. Luckily it was still loaded. If empty we would have taken the roller door out with the roof rack due to the extra lift in the suspension. Got that right!

See ya.
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 8:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Indisurf,

First of all WELCOME TO THE FORUM, POST NUMBER ONE, AND A GOODIE!

That was great, and good advice... One little detail for the benefit of other Owners going through this process, I think you mean KG not pounds... The ARB suspension springs are rated in KG to my knowledge... Correct me if I am wrong..

Friends, while I did the 200 kg rear upgrade, and the 100 kg front for bullbar and winch, I still might consider the 400 kg rear if my wife did not have a bad neck... I have decided to add a drawer system in the rear, and Platinum slide out drop down 300 mm mount for my fridge. With the drawers loaded with tools, I could be a little soft with a Bushtracker on the back.. We will see Wink

Kind regards, and again WELCOME "In the surf"...
Road Ranger
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 21, 2012 12:43 pm    Post subject: Suspension Specifications 200 Series Reply with quote

Steve,

Thanks and apologise, the units should have read kgs and not lbs.

I was working from an ARB USA chart and forgot to change over my units.

For interest, I have attached a link to the USA ARB website that details the suspension (and other things) for the Toyota 200 series. Regarding the suspension specifications, all that happens in Australia is we convert the units to metric.

http://www.arbusa.com/uploads/PDF/accessorizeYourRig/toyotaLandCruiser200.pdf

Regards All.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2012 11:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well Friends, LATEST REVISIONS... This is an interesting suspension lesson here to be learned:

If you have followed the Forum for long, you will know that I have done up two 100 Series, and recommended the 400 kg pack with a big long range tank and spare tyre and jack carrier on the back...

In this Thread, I recommended the 200 kg..... Well, that was before I decided on the drawer system and a full set of tools to back up Bushtracker Expeditions like the one coming first of next month.... Rolling Eyes THEN, that was before I decided on the roll out and 300 mm drop down Platinum mount for the stainless fridge freezer I have featured here on the Forum, what is that another 50 kg or more? Look, I have added more than 200 kg to the Sahara with just a change in ideas.

So, we are getting prepped for a 4000 km R&D trip into the Never Never, and I am upgrading to the 400 kg rear spring. I think we all put on a little more weight than we anticipate, as we get older... Laughing Rolling Eyes Embarassed So the lesson is to think out if you want a drawer system or second spare or long range tanks, and get the larger size suspension...

Incidently, Matthew has done the same thing, and he is going to add the 200 kg springs of mine to his VX.. We have tended to grow a little more than we thought and his new 21' Bushtracker is a bit more loaded than he anticipated.

Kind regards, on the road with the Ranger....
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 23, 2012 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Friends,

Here is the end result on the 2012 Sahara, the latest R&D vehicle for Bushtracker:

I have decided to outfit it for larger expeditions, and have the Outback Drawer System installed. Now for sure this is a very nice system, and the drawers hang out open and lock there until you push in with the 16 lbs of force to unlock and allow them to roll in closed. Very nice touch. But that make the large fridge freezer a problem because it it too hight to access... Rolling Eyes

The answer is the Platinum Slide out Drop Down, the 60 series one that is wide enough for the fridge. But this all adds weight, the tools I am going to carry, the air compressor kit, the recovery gear, the slide out and fridge freezer, I now have the room to overload the 200kg springs. In fact I would be waay overloaded on the suspension with a Bushtracker hooked up, and be a bit baggy and saggy in the bum end of things. Shocked That is also a safety factor, and it would not have the degree of control really required..

So the answer was the 400 kg springs. Had I decided on the drawers and slide out drop down system in the first place, I should have gotten them instead of the 200 kg one. Lesson learned, and we are back to the same as the recommendation for the 100 Series, in taking the 400 kg suspension upgrade.

Now it does ride firm and a bit hard. I have to actually load it up more, and still I suggest that it will ride a bit more firm than most Luxury Car sorts of People are going to like. However, when hooked up to a Bushtracker, it will still be firm and allow a bit more safety and control.

My final analysis? Plan your load carefully to decide between the 200 and 400 kg ARB springs. And further, get a grip on your priorities: If Luxury Car feel is more important go lighter and load up less. If long distance travel and heavy loading is your priority, go the larger ones...

Here is the load in mine, without the Platinum Slide out Drop down mount for the fridge. Drawers are pretty full, loaded for expedition as a support vehicle with a full tool set, compressor, power tools, and the rest:



Anyone can give an opinion, and I try not to. I try to give you actual real time empirical studies of the issues, with ownership and long term driving and testing. That is the difference between a personal opinion, and hands on ownership realtime R&D where someone will put their money on the line for you. Wink

Kind regards, and on the road with the Ranger.... Wink
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 03, 2012 1:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bob and Lynne write:

I need to replace a punctured Polyair bag in the rear of my 100 series Landcruiser.

It is fairly loaded up, with steel bullbar, Ox Hydraulic winch, steel roofrack, 60 litre fridge on wooden shelving, and rear tyre carrier (no long range tank).
The BT ball weight is approx 320kg. It is an 18ft, 2005 build, Air suspension, tare weight about 2800kg.

I presently have OME 200kg coil springs with Polyair airbags in the rear.
It tows well and stably, with the 50mm nose down as set up by Bushtracker when I had the DO35 hitch fitted.
My mechanic has suggested that we fit new 3 inch/300kg EGR springs with new airbags.
Will I need to have the hitch setup rejigged?
I would appreciate any suggestions or comments.
Thanks
Bob

****************************************************

Hello Bob,
I evolved to the 400 kg springs in my 100 series years ago, and it still has them on board. I tried to do it in this 200 Series with the 200 kg springs, but with Platinum Slide out Drop Down, the 60 series one that is wide enough for the fridge, that alone added 40 kg.. Then, the drawer system and all the tools I am going to carry, the air compressor kit, the recovery gear, the slide out and fridge freezer, I now have overloaded the 200kg springs. In fact I would be waay overloaded on the suspension with a Bushtracker hooked up, and be a bit baggy and saggy in the bum end of things. Shocked That is also a safety factor, and it would not have the degree of control really required..

So the answer was the 400 kg springs in the last model of Toyota 100 Series, and after trials, it is the same outcome for the 200 Series if you load it up like this. Had I decided on the drawers and slide out drop down system in the first place, I should have gotten them instead of the 200 kg one. Lesson learned, and we are back to the same as the recommendation for the 100 Series, in taking the 400 kg suspension upgrade, if you are really going to load it up like this.



Now, I got a 50mm lift, and the suspension rides a bit higher with reserve capacity, so yes you will need to set up your hitch a bit lower. If there is not room to drop it enough: There is a Topic here in this Category on different drop head parts of the ball mount available, (if you run out of holes).. But yes, the short answer is you will probably have to re-adjust your head unit lower with the suspension modification...

I will be doing a two week romp in the Outback testing these mods and a new air bag suspension option for Bushtrackers, so will have more comments as required on my return trip...

Kind regards, on the road, Ranger
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 27, 2012 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well: "The proof is in the Pudding.... And here is my confirmation.."

We have just completed filming of our latest DVD. We ran a 4400 km test of the new Air Suspension, and travel from the lakes of Menindie, Broken Hill side tracks, and Silverton Ghost Town north to Milperinka gold ghost town through Edenvale gorge, and on to Cameron Corner out on the Border. With a loaded 200 series, this is the right suspension. 100 or so on the front with a 50mm lift and 400 kg rear with 50 mm lift, rides with firm control and does not bottom out and buck. The jarring ride is if you do not have enough springs, and it bottoms out with the bump stop on the chassis. This rode very nicely.

After 4400 kms, a lot at high speed trying to break the new Air Suspension, I can confidently give this my thumbs up.. This was the right combination, with the heavy drawer system fully loaded it rode very nice. Maybe the 200 kg rear without a drawer system, but mine with a 42 kg drop down slide out and large 80 litre fridge freezer on top of the drawers, made the 400 kg rear springs the right ones. Wink

It still is my luxury car around town.. The ride is not so firm as to ruin it for around town, it just feels a bit sporty and firm in control and ride.



Kind regards, on the road with the Ranger
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2012 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Steve
My Sahara will be ready for pick up on the 28OCT so I went to ARB (Adelaide) yesterday to order the suspension GVM upgrade before Toyota register the vehicle. I was undecided on the 200KG or the 400 Kg upgrade. They said if I take the 200Kg and LATER I wanted the 400Kg they could upgrade it if I bought a new heavier BT in the future and the new GVM would be applicable too. I said are u sure about that and I was reassured that future upgrade to GVM was OK providing the 200kg was done before 1st rego. Do you think they are correct. (My BT18 only has 200Kgs on the hitch)
Regards Pete
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2012 4:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No, sorry Pete, I think you are wrong... And this is dangerous and very important: Your 18' should not be run with 200 kg ball weight. That is way too light...

The 200 kg rear springs could be OK, but having had both I went for the 400 kg, and I am not sure what that has to do the GVM upgrade... You will have to talk with them on that. It all depends on what you are planning to carry. Boat on top and loader? Or drawer system loaded with tools and goodies and recovery gear? Then I would go the 400 kg, especially if you think you might upgrade the van to a larger size.

The size most seem to stay with long term is larger than the 18', and I mean by an overwhelming majority. I make that judgement based on the ones that have come back for a second new Bushtracker, 112 so far, and 95% or more go to the 20' size or larger. Also those that buy new after owning second hand Bushtracker, maybe 250 so far, are going larger as well by 95%.. Certainly 19-21' for the 98% at a guesstimate.. Also and very important: I would plan on the maximum ball weight for best stability in any case, load the van to 350 kg on the ball for the best high speed stability in and accident avoidance move on the highway..

Kind regards, but sorry, my experience with the 1000-1500 running at any given time is just this...

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2012 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Steve, I think the ball is too low as well so am midway putting the Honda in a carrybox and 2 jerrys of water on the A frame. Has always had low ball wt but has always towed well. We travel light though. Thank Peter for showing me the Air suspension on Tuesday. I was incorrectly under the impression that the GVM upgrade modifications were fixed and could not be changed once the new ADR complience plate was fitted.
Regards
Pete
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2013 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Friends,

Matthew has gotten the new Lovells Suspension upgrade... Now this comes with a GVM Upgrade for a one tonne carrying capacity. I must admit, that he did this for tax purposes, and so he did not have to carry a Log Book on it anymore.. However, he likes the ride, and since he too has had three variations of suspensions in our R&D Program, here is what he says about it:

Quote:
"It rides slightly smoother than the ARB system that was on there before. It takes out a little more of the smaller bumps, yet still gives you the firm ride. We load it up quite heavy for a Family, and the beauty is that we are not even close to going over, even with the van attached. "

On rhe road with the Ranger... Wink
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Samson & Delilah



Joined: 09 Apr 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 5:56 pm    Post subject: Suspension Upgrade for our new LC 200 Reply with quote

Having read all this I am a bit confused what to go for:
ARB or Lovells?
What is your final recommendation Steve?
I need to order next week and would appreciate advice.
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 12, 2013 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

God Bless you, I will tell you when I know for sure and have experienced this for myself, and i will also tell you when not... In this case we have to rely on Matthews report that the Lovells rides good...

I can only give you my best analysis as a Qld Transport HVRAS Officer and my experience with doing R&D on three 200 Series, and here is the best i can do for you: My report on the ARB suspension upgrades stands. The motivation for the Lovells was two fold: Are you going to max out your GVM overloading the Cruiser? Or are you going to use the Commercial tax credit with a one ton payload and no necessity for a Log Book? Then yes the Lovells seems to be the answer.

No to the above?? Then I like all the flexibility of the ARB choices per my reporting and what payload you are planning on??. 200 kg payload increase, 400 kg upgrade like me??? I suggest you consider the options and select what suits your particular loading.. I cannot tell you more as I do not know what your particular plans are....

Last note, I really am a fan of the OME Nitrocharger Shocks that ARB uses with those suspension upgrades..

Kind regards, on the road with the Ranger...
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Emu



Joined: 04 Oct 2010
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2013 7:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thought I'd give my two cents worth.

We have had a 200 series for about three months now with 400Kg OME suspension with airbags.

We also have a 2007 model Prado which had 200kg OME (from ARB) fitted from new. We picked up the Prado with all 4*4 toys from new including some heavy cargo cages, drawers, fridge slides and filled them with tools etc. We also have 180Ltrs of fuel to carry. No noticeable difference in ride was noticed in the Prado.

This is not the case with the 200. ARB could not supply the 180Ltr reserve tank or the Kaymar rear bar and wheel carrier at the time we picked it up (apparently it takes weeks to colour match the new bits). We notice the rear of the car jumps around similar to riding a pogo stick with minimal fuel, even with no air in the bags. Nevertheless, we suspect by the time we have 270kg of fuel (both tanks) the leverage action of weight of the Kaymar and spare on the rear, fill the cargo with 'stuff', and then place 300Kg of Bustracker on the back she'll settle down a bit.

Cheers

Paul
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stoz



Joined: 22 Nov 2007
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Location: Bowen
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Emu, we had a 100 series with ARB 400kg upgrade and airbags. It was fine towing a 20' Bushy. In may we got a new 200 series. We were going to do the same 400kg upgrade to it and GVM upgrade, however ARB Townsville advised to only do the 200kg because they said the new springs are wound differently. We took their advise and find the 200kg with airbags is fine, about the same sort of ride as the 400kg 100 series. We have drawers and a boat on the roof and don't use WDH bars as the car sits level without them. ARB advised us that if we weren't happy with their recommendation they would change it out to 400kg @ no charge within I think a month of fitting. I am not sure but I think the shocks they use are the same for a 200 or 400 kg upgrade so it might be worth asking if you can change out the springs. Ours has the GVM upgrade and I am not sure if the upgrade components are the same as just a standard 200kg upgrade, but probably are.
John
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Emu



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 7:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Stoz,

This is nice to know.

We're not unhappy with the heavier springs on the back of the cruiser. The ride is just an observation with no load. Time (and extra load) will tell if our choice was correct. I'll let you know as soon as we do our shakedown trip.

Seems ARB Townsville is quite customer focused to offer you a replacement deal.

Cheers

Paul
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 8:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul,
In general, (and I would ask) ARB has always had a suspension change out policy it the ride is too harsh.. Having had both the 200 kg and the 400 kg, maybe I am not too sensitive, but there is not a lot in it.. Laughing

In my case, I not only have a heavy drawer system, loaded with tools and bits and pieces, but also a stainless fridge freezer and about 50 kg of the drop down slide out rack. I was travelling heavy, so the 400 kg suited the Sahara very well...

Without the extremes of boat or load like mine, and with a smaller van, the 200 kg would do. Myself, the extra firmness with the 400 is only slight. I personally like the sports car feel, as the Sahara stands upright around curves and round-a-bouts even here in town not towing.. (My Wife took it off of me).... Wink

My advice still stand in this Thread. Over GVM or extremes or Commercial use for taxes, and the Lovells seems to hold the market there. For me, and doing the R&D on three of the 200 Series, lighter load I would go the 200, heavier load I would go the 400. Myself, I would always go the 400, as there is not much punishment in it to have the reserves..

Kind regards, on the road Ranger
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Emu



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PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ta Cowboy,

We're pretty used to the 400Kg springs now. I think we'll stick with them for the heavier work.

I remember the Prado with 200 Kg springs got a little 'soft' around 40,000K's and currently (90,000K's without shock absorber change) they're decidedly 'spungy'. So I reckon the cruiser will be good with the 400Kg + air and the load we'll put in.

It may be somewhat overkill, but I prefer to do that where we'll be going.

Cheers

Paul
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3ways



Joined: 09 Aug 2013
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 1:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Paul
Has ARB now fitted all your extra's and if so did it change your ride?
We are waiting forl bar/winch arrive before doing the GVM upgrade as our local ARB recommended it would ride like a pogo stick just as you descirbe.
Frank
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Emu



Joined: 04 Oct 2010
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 2:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No Frank,

We're still waiting for the 180Ltr tank and the Kaymar wheel carrier to be fitted. So I can't help you about ride with load until that happens.

However, we've become used to the ride as is. We bought the cruiser to do a job (ie pull a van through iconic tracks) and there is always a compromise. I reckon a bit harder ride in suburbia is small price to pay to ensure we can tow the van through all the remote conditions we are going to subject it too.

But it is all up to personal choice

Good luck with your decision

Cheers

Paul

Ps: We're getting a 12,000Lb Warn fitted to the front also, so that may additionally alter the ride.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 14, 2013 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One more thing to encourage you Paul,
I have the 400 over OME spring kit in my old 100 Series, which I still have..

The 400 pack in the 200 Series Sahara, rides softer than in the 100 Series IMO... On the road, Ranger
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