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Old 08-17-2018, 08:20 PM   #1
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Help Handling issues with 2018 forester 2431ms and Toad

We are ready to go on our first trip this weekend with our Toad (2018 Chevy Colorado Zr2). The handling on our 2018 Forester 2421ms (27 foot) has improved tremendously after adding Front and Rear Hellwig sway bars, Bilstein Shocks and safe-T-plus steering stabilizer. Also had Front alignment done.
Then we hooked up our Toad and we are worst than before these mods. Feels like we are lighter in the front and all over the road. Weight loaded minus the toad is 12,940 and with the truck is 18,200. Wheelbase Ratio is 56%. We called the alignment guy on some suggestions and he said we should of bought a 30 foot at minimum and this is a common problem. We are sick about this and wondering if anybody has come across this problem or has any suggestions? We are at 70 lbs in airbags. Also added a 7 inch riser to the hitch to level the truck. alignment doc.pdf
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Old 08-17-2018, 10:14 PM   #2
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Sounds like the tail is wagging the dog. If you did not add hitch weight to tow your family truckster and the handling was better after the add ons, you have two basic issues that could cause your handling to deteriorate. First is your alignment. Your attachment is unreadable so I’ll ask: Do you have >5* of positive caster? If not, thats problem #1.
The second is your rear axle. I did not read where you installed a track bar (panhard).
It prevents the lateral movement of your rear axle. Leaf springs are not stabile enough to keep the rear from moving left and right. Add a few thousand pounds of chevy on the back and your toad becomes a horizontal pendulum.
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Old 08-17-2018, 11:40 PM   #3
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No rear track bar. Only thing we haven’t done. Can you tell me how they work? Recommendations? I will try to send that attachment again on the alignment. And yes it did handle better after the add-Ons, before hitching the truck.
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Old 08-18-2018, 02:09 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Duckogram View Post
Sounds like the tail is wagging the dog. If you did not add hitch weight to tow your family truckster and the handling was better after the add ons, you have two basic issues that could cause your handling to deteriorate. First is your alignment. Your attachment is unreadable so I’ll ask: Do you have >5* of positive caster? If not, thats problem #1.
The second is your rear axle. I did not read where you installed a track bar (panhard).
It prevents the lateral movement of your rear axle. Leaf springs are not stabile enough to keep the rear from moving left and right. Add a few thousand pounds of chevy on the back and your toad becomes a horizontal pendulum.
We are looking at supersteer and they say must use with factory sway bar. Do you know why? We have the hellwigs front and rear. And everything we have seen here on the forums is the s/s being used with heavy duty aftermarket anti-sway bars.
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Old 08-18-2018, 08:33 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by firemech2 View Post
We are looking at supersteer and they say must use with factory sway bar. Do you know why? We have the hellwigs front and rear. And everything we have seen here on the forums is the s/s being used with heavy duty aftermarket anti-sway bars.
2800 QS Mods

They say it must be used with the factory sway bar because if you don’t have one, there is noplace to bolt the mounts for the track bar. As you can see in the link, the mounting brackets go under the sway bar u-brackets.

Saw your alignment specs. Your crack alignment guy did not dial in enough caster. Lots of posts on the subject and even Forest River specs. A simple googlee search will locate them.
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Old 08-19-2018, 08:24 AM   #6
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Caster

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duckogram View Post
2800 QS Mods

They say it must be used with the factory sway bar because if you don’t have one, there is noplace to bolt the mounts for the track bar. As you can see in the link, the mounting brackets go under the sway bar u-brackets.

Saw your alignment specs. Your crack alignment guy did not dial in enough caster. Lots of posts on the subject and even Forest River specs. A simple googlee search will locate them.
X2. Your final caster/camber settings are fighting each other. All things being equal;’a vehicle will “pull” toward + camber and - caster. The more + caster the better it will track. We use different camber/ caster settings on left and right to help a race car turn on different tracks. Road vehicles need almost same settings on both sides.
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Old 08-19-2018, 11:10 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firemech2 View Post
We are ready to go on our first trip this weekend with our Toad (2018 Chevy Colorado Zr2). The handling on our 2018 Forester 2421ms (27 foot) has improved tremendously after adding Front and Rear Hellwig sway bars, Bilstein Shocks and safe-T-plus steering stabilizer. Also had Front alignment done.
Then we hooked up our Toad and we are worst than before these mods. Feels like we are lighter in the front and all over the road. Weight loaded minus the toad is 12,940 and with the truck is 18,200. Wheelbase Ratio is 56%. We called the alignment guy on some suggestions and he said we should of bought a 30 foot at minimum and this is a common problem. We are sick about this and wondering if anybody has come across this problem or has any suggestions? We are at 70 lbs in airbags. Also added a 7 inch riser to the hitch to level the truck. Attachment 183576
Our 28 ft Lexi is set up as yours is as far as shocks. 70 psi in rear air bags.
The one thing you don't mention is the psi your running in your tires. If your running the max 80 psi or so, I would suggest trying to drop the psi to around 72 front and 74 rear, and see if that dosen't get rid of some of the "light" feel in the front. You can go to the tire manuf web site and find the correct psi for the weight your running. Your posted weight is way under what 80 psi would be needed for.
If your rig, when towing, is tracking stright with the toad tracking stright, then your really not dealing with any weight on your hitch. Your simply pulling, with no down force on your hitch to make the front feel "light". If it feels "light" then your front tires may be overinflated, or you may have too much weight (inside cargo weight) aft of the rear axle. Towing your toad does not place a significant amount of weight on the rear.
Our Lexi has a long rear overhang, but we've towed a Subaru 30,000 miles and have never had a problem with "tail wag", and no, I don't have a trac bar.
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Old 08-19-2018, 04:00 PM   #8
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I wasn't happy about spending $300 for the alignment. But now having to go back to this guy who insists we made a mistake and need to get a longer motorhome to haul our Zr2. He also thinks that our hitch is too long with the 7"riser. So looks like we might have to shell out more money to get the alignment right. Not sure who we can go to in Orange County CA? That being said, the motorhome runs and handles beautiful with no toad and tracks straight as is. We can drive one handed going 70mph (not that we drive that way) easily.
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Old 08-19-2018, 04:08 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by grumpy0374 View Post
Our 28 ft Lexi is set up as yours is as far as shocks. 70 psi in rear air bags.
The one thing you don't mention is the psi your running in your tires. If your running the max 80 psi or so, I would suggest trying to drop the psi to around 72 front and 74 rear, and see if that dosen't get rid of some of the "light" feel in the front. You can go to the tire manuf web site and find the correct psi for the weight your running. Your posted weight is way under what 80 psi would be needed for.
If your rig, when towing, is tracking stright with the toad tracking stright, then your really not dealing with any weight on your hitch. Your simply pulling, with no down force on your hitch to make the front feel "light". If it feels "light" then your front tires may be overinflated, or you may have too much weight (inside cargo weight) aft of the rear axle. Towing your toad does not place a significant amount of weight on the rear.
Our Lexi has a long rear overhang, but we've towed a Subaru 30,000 miles and have never had a problem with "tail wag", and no, I don't have a trac bar.
Grumpy
Grumpy, thanks for the info. In fact we do have the max tire pressure in the rear (80lbs) and 70lbs in the front. So we will adjust that. The airbags are at 80lbs and we don't have much in the cargo dept. Increasing the airbags actually did improve handling slightly. Truck does track straight behind us but there is a lot of play in the steering (which is not an issue at all with no toad) and it feels light in the front.
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Old 08-19-2018, 04:15 PM   #10
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our setup.........
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