Overland suspension recommendation/improvements

Rob

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Mar 1, 2010
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I fitted some used OME shocks with new Inroman B coils (+200kg rear +50kg front I think) and I am really not happy with the vehicle's handling on paved roads when loaded up. The vehicle has around 350 to 400kg of extra weight on it at the moment including a roof tent and a spare wheel on an aluminium roof rack. When driving on paved roads it feels very top heavy which makes overtaking on roads with deep ruts caused by lorries rather hairy. Also in uneven corners the vehicle oscillates side to side uncomfortably. It is not riding too low but it is definitely lower than after the coils settled. There are a few more observations that I would like to add, driving on tar after 2000km of corrugations and over 10000km potholes the handling is considerably worse. The ARB bushes are cracked on the chassis side, non-existent on the axle end up front (not sure about rear) and the control arm bushes look shot. Also after one stretch of 400km of corrugations the OME dampers where so hot I almost burnt myself when checking them over.

There is a place in Ulaanbaatar where I can buy OME suspension (sorry I cant take orders) for about half the price than in the UK and there is a good Toyota dealer here with very cheap labour. The Ironman coils are known to be much softer than OME of the same load ratings which would be better for top heavy vehicles IMO but there may be more to it than just changing the coils im my case. What should I change to get the greatest improvement in handling? When I get back to the UK I will be using it for greenlaning and playing in the woods so +400kg coils on the rear is not an option. How can I check if the dampers are OK apart form rocking the vehicle and checking for leaks? Ideally I should get it all done but cost may be an issue.
 

Gary Stockton

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Can you get Firestone air bag helper springs there? The 400kg constants (if that's what you go for at the rear) are going to be way too unpleasant for UK roads when unloaded, but the airbags are a great help for situations like you're in currently, especially as you can set them to the firmness you require, within reason.

Clearly, sorting the bushes etc. will help too :D

Good luck!
 

Paul_Humphreys

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OME 868s on the rear. I have them fitted and I carry a LOT of extra weight. I went for 850s on the front with a 25mm packer. But over there you might get the 850l (L for long) and would not need the packer.

Paul
 
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Dave Docwra

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Apr 24, 2010
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Hi, Sounds like you need the bushes replacing & that will make a great improvement, If the shocks are getting that hot they are not doing there job & are finished.
 

Scott

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Mar 17, 2010
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Hi Rob,

My advice would be to take the opportunity to replace the springs and shocks with new ome, and fit the springs that are correctly rated for your load. If you keep hold of your current rear springs you can refit them on your return to the UK and keep the +400kg rears for the next major trip, it's not a big job to swap out the rear coils.

It also sounds that it needs a trip to your friendly toyota dealer for some new bushes, as I'm sure your aware, it'll still be all over the road till these are seen too.

Unfortunately you just need to bit the bullet financially and get the 80 back to a safe handling vehicle, after all your and your passengers safety is the most important issue. At least its cheaper than having it done in the UK.

Good luck and happy travels.

Scott.

Edit: The shocks may be getting too hot as a result of the 80 being under sprung and over working the shocks, if the springs and shocks are matched it should be a lot happier.
 

Paul

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Mar 1, 2010
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This is not the first time that OME shocks are overheating. The reports of the shocks being built sub standard seem to be true, i think Julian had the same on his.
 

pugwash

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Mar 1, 2010
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Do you know your actual vehicle weight as is at the moment? Aything over about 3200kg and you are overlaoding the truck- stick some weight on the roof, or behind the rear axle (rear tire carrier maybe? extended fuel tank?).

have you had a very very good think about where all the weighs is distributed in the truck- it sounds silly, but changing the placement of heavy items can be the difference between a safe and a dangerous truck.

Corregations are the most demanding of surfaces to drive on- what speed do you drive at- the natural resonance of the truck or faster?

Are the rest of your bushes in good order? poor quality bushes can mean that the dampers are having to control lateral as well as vertical motion- something they are not good at.

There is no point changing the suspension if it doesn't fix the root cause of your problem, so make sure you have the basics covered before spending your money!
 

Rob

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The vehicle should not weigh more than 2900kg, but I may be wrong... It was weighed with roof tent 2 spares and 2 full jerry cans with a full tank of fuel and it came to 2750kg All I have on the roof is a roof tent and a 2nd spare wheel which I cant really put anywhere else. All the really heavy stuff like jerry cans and recovery equipment is up against the load guard just behind the rear seats. The rear seats is where we usually keep clothes, snacks and day-packs. All the weight is as low as it can be and as close to the centre of the car as we can safely put it.

On the corrugations I drove faster than the natural frequency of the trucks suspension, but that speed varied as the size of the corrugations changed. If you drive at the natural frequency the vibrations can be so bad you can't hear the passenger.

As regards to bushes the truck doesn't wander on the road, it drives like on rails. The only issues I am having is with a large wobble in uneven cornering at speed. I understand that the bushes will help with that but if the coils are far to soft for the application there will be little improvement in replacing the bushes IMO.

Depending on the price of OME coils I will probably upgrade the coils only to 400kg if I cant find any bags which I have had no luck with so far. I will put the Ironman coils back in when I get back home.

One more thing are ARB bushes part of the MOT? If so I may just remove them for the MOT.
 

Toby

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Feb 26, 2010
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Hi Rob,

Glad to hear you've got to Mongolia.

In order of priority I would:

a) Check all the suspension bushes and replace as required

b) Take the shocks off and check their operation - there shouldn't be any sign of oil leakage and you should feel similar resistance to compression from all of them. Replace as required. If they were very hot after driving on corrugations that's normal.

c) Change out the Ironman springs for OME front and rear - as suggested I'd go for the +400kgs rears and keep the soft Ironman rears for when you're back in the UK.

You will probably get away with removing the ARBs altogether for the MOT (I did) - if they aren't there they can't be tested. BUT I wouldn't do a long trip heavily laden or with anything on the roof without them.

Best of luck,
Toby
1990 HDJ80 UK
 

Rob

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Mar 1, 2010
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I did the ARB bushes today at an OME place here, was quite cheap. Only drove it at about 25mph cos of the traffic but it already feels better. I could not justify the cost of the coils, they were almost £350 for a set including fitting so settled for just the bushes.

Will update on the results. Also will try an loose as much weight as possible like only 20l of diesel.
 

Paul_Humphreys

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Mar 1, 2010
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Rob said:
One more thing are ARB bushes part of the MOT? If so I may just remove them for the MOT.

Yes Rob they are. Also read below.

Toby said:
Hi Rob,
You will probably get away with removing the ARBs altogether for the MOT (I did) - if they aren't there they can't be tested. BUT I wouldn't do a long trip heavily laden or with anything on the roof without them.

Best of luck,
Toby
1990 HDJ80 UK
I was going to remove mine. But on talking to the MOT man, later this year (next month I think). If it a car (anything that needs an MOT) has had factory fitted parts missing, IE ARB, then it will fail the MOT. The ARB will be listed on the MOT computer as been fitted at the factory.

Land Rovers will get away with it as they were only fitted to some models, but LC will not.

Paul
 

24Seven

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Mar 1, 2010
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Paul_Humphreys said:
I was going to remove mine. But on talking to the MOT man, later this year (next month I think). If it a car (anything that needs an MOT) has had factory fitted parts missing, IE ARB, then it will fail the MOT. The ARB will be listed on the MOT computer as been fitted at the factory.

Land Rovers will get away with it as they were only fitted to some models, but LC will not.

Paul
Hello Paul

Do you think they will have this level of detail on their system? They are getting increasingly tight on MOT's and the Regs, I know.

I had a debate with my MOT man yesterday about my 18 year old twin cab Hi-Lux (which he had MOTed for the past 10 year) and if he could carry out the MOT at all, because it maybe more than 3 Ton GVW, being on import there is not a plated weight and nothing in the V5 (Note to others with an import) so in the end I took it to a weighbridge to prove it was only 1820 Kg empty and it would never be able to carry 1.2 Ton without falling to bits :mrgreen:
 

24Seven

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Mar 1, 2010
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Thinking some more........

What about seats :shock: , that would be far more obvious to any MOT tester that seats are missing compared to an ARB, it would be a real PITA to refit rear seats each year just for the MOT.
 

Paul_Humphreys

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ARBs will be easy to spot as the mounts are there and most MOT men would know what they are looking for.

As for weight my 80 series is about 3.5T :shock: but will still be a class 3 mot as it is not a comerical car.

As for seats, maybe not, but the seat belts would come under it. A 80 series did not always come with the 3rd row of seats. Also as with LRs the number of seats is not on the log book.

It will need some more digging.

Paul
 

Paul_Humphreys

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As for your hilux, it might carry 1.2t when new. So it might have been a class 7 mot. Going back to LRs, a lot of owners are comming un stuck as the log boogs have the wrong plated weight on them. A lot have 3050kgs. So a lot are refused an mot and have to have a class 7 mot or wright to the DVLA.

Paul
 

Rob

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You can MOT a vehicle over 3000kg as class 3 only if it is a non commercial vehicle (ie not a pick-up) and 4WD according to my MOT place.
 
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