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Old 08-14-2018, 05:27 PM   #1
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Improving Forester Driveability

I bought a 2005 Forester 2 years ago and have put about 5000 miles on it so far. I have installed Road-master anti-sway bars on the front and rear and will do a steering stabilizer this Fall. I'm wondering what others have done to improve your ride and handling. I've had a few people recommend Sumo Springs, so I'm just looking for what others have done to improve the ride and handling of your Class C models.
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Old 08-14-2018, 06:17 PM   #2
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I didn't see which model you have, Ive got a 2016 3011. I replaced the front and rear sway bars to Hellwig"s, installed Monroe coil over rear shocks, and a S/S rear trac bar. also had the front end align'ed.Still need to install the front shocks. I replaced the OEM steering damper, w/ a bilstein. I handles like my f350 dually.
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Old 08-14-2018, 06:54 PM   #3
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Ford or Chevy?
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Old 08-14-2018, 07:13 PM   #4
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Ours drives great right from the dealership . E450 ,2017 3010ds . I drive a E250 for my work van , no mods needed.
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:13 AM   #5
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I have a 2018 Forester 3011, and experience a bit of drift, even in low wind, I think a lot of busyness on the stearing wheel, to just keep is between the lines, run 70 lbs in the rear airbags, but that is usually down to 45 in a few days. I have a apt with Ford dealer to take a look at it all, and advise for a better driving experience. I have driven 3 different class C's in renting and this is what I have experienced.
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Old 08-15-2018, 09:04 AM   #6
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I'm sorry I should have included that it is the 2861 built on a Ford E450.
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Old 08-15-2018, 09:19 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by fred+sherry View Post
Ours drives great right from the dealership . E450 ,2017 3010ds . I drive a E250 for my work van , no mods needed.
X2 !

So far, so good with no after market products ! Just over 5000 miles, still handles just fine, and I can drink my coffee while cruising down the roadways!
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Old 08-15-2018, 09:40 AM   #8
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I added Hellwig antisway bars front and rear, Roadmaster steering stabilizer, and verified the positive caster with an alignment at a truck shop.

On our last long trip, I noticed that reducing weight in the far rear storage made a huge difference on the need to saw the wheel back and forth constantly. I try to keep as little as possible back there and have only a tiny amount of water onboard while traveling.
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Old 08-15-2018, 10:10 AM   #9
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I replaced both front and rear sway bars w/ Hellwigs. I then took the rig to a Truck and Spring shop and had them pull off the air bags (hate them) and add 2 additional leaf springs on each side of the coach. I then had them align the coach.

I ended up with +7 caster on both front wheels (the side that is supposed to have more does have a little more - I can't remember the exact numbers). A little over Ford spec, but I was advised the extra caster would do nothing to the steering component or tire wear.

I can steer my rig now w/ 1 finger doing 70. Before people get excited, I normally drive 62-65, but I just wanted to see.
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Old 08-15-2018, 10:49 AM   #10
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X2 !

So far, so good with no after market products ! Just over 5000 miles, still handles just fine, and I can drink my coffee while cruising down the roadways!
X3.

I have a 2017 2250 Sunseeker on an E450 chassis. One thing that helped me was the advice on here to "load her up". The E450 is really overkill for this thing but they stopped building them on the E350. I have a CCC of over 4200 lbs! Putting in a full load in the FW tank cured all my handling issues. Everything stock.
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Old 08-15-2018, 01:02 PM   #11
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My 2012 3011 drives wonderfully with just the factory components. Your problem may simply be oversteering. My wife experiences this when she first starts driving. I tell her "little corrections" and that helps.

My favorite saying is: Let it be a motorhome
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Old 08-17-2018, 01:45 PM   #12
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2014, 3170 DSF FORD E450 Sunseeker. Drove terrible from dealership. First, front alignment with cam bushings installed. Made the unit drivable.
2nd, a year later, replaced the steering stabilizer with Bilstein.
Alignment checked, Good
3rd 5 years later, replaced all shocks with Bilstein.
4th, 5 years later, replaced all tires.
Alignment checked, Good.
Each change Improved the steering incrementally. On our long trip, drives very well.
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Old 08-19-2018, 11:30 PM   #13
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My little corrections are like a 4-5" movement in the steering wheel, I don't think that's normal???? I have a appointment Monday at the Ford Dealer to take a look at it. Do you think I'm just asking for too much, It gets to be fatiguing to drive 150 miles. do you think this is a correctable item? it's a 2018 Forester 3011, with 2500 miles on it.
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Old 08-20-2018, 10:00 PM   #14
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Yes, you play is not normal. I had the same problem. You can do a crude check your self for front end play just by observing the wheel movement with the steering. The wheels should move the instant the steering wheel is rotated. With the RV started, Have someone just barely move the steering wheel while you observe the wheel movement.
An alignment is most likely the issue. Here is a link to the
FRF custom specs. Have it aligned to these specs. It will require replacing the straight Ford bushing with cam bushing. Not much money. Mine was $280.00 for everything, five years ago.
Alignments are best done with a trip load out but get it done anyway. You can always get it checked with a trip load out. Mine are aligned to these specs and there is no abnormal tire wear. I believe these specs were developed for the rental industry. There is a history.
Link to custom specs.

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ecs-61397.html

Let us know what the dealer says.
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Old 08-21-2018, 08:29 PM   #15
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Our 2017 2501TS on the E450 chassis handled decently from the factory, but wandered pretty bad when towing our Jeep (4 door Jeep lifted on 35” off-road tires, so that doesn’t help), when it was windy, or especially with both. Towing took heavy focus and if there was any decent wind it was pretty “white knuckle” and I’d be fatigued after a couple hours driving.

Probably could’ve gone with a front end alignment, but since it only happened with towing and/or wind, I decided to upgrade the steering stabilizer. Went with the roadmaster and it made a HUGE difference. No wander at all now and can drive it with one finger like a regular van. 55mph used to be the max we’d do when towing. Now sometimes I look down and realize I’m doing 70 (and then back off to 60-65 &#128541

Every once in a while I feel a little bit of wandering and think something is wrong until I check the weather and realize there’s 30mph gusts! 😂 Before 15-20mph gusts were downright miserable. No more pulling when a big rig goes by either.
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Old 08-21-2018, 08:36 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by kijak View Post
My little corrections are like a 4-5" movement in the steering wheel, I don't think that's normal???? I have a appointment Monday at the Ford Dealer to take a look at it. Do you think I'm just asking for too much, It gets to be fatiguing to drive 150 miles. do you think this is a correctable item? it's a 2018 Forester 3011, with 2500 miles on it.
We used to have quite a bit of play like that, but it typically was only when towing the Jeep behind us (with 35” knobby tires) or when it was really windy. Went with the roadmaster steering stabilizer and all that wander is gone. Might still need to have the front end alignment done, but since it was only happening when towing or with wind, it felt to me like oversteer caused by the wind and big Jeep tires wandering behind us a bit. Problem is solved now and it tracks straight when driving, braking hard, etc.
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Old 08-29-2018, 11:55 PM   #17
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Just got mine back from the Ford Dealer, there Alignment computer went out, and a week later it's done, it is better but still room for improvement, and they wouldn't look at the air bags. mine don't hold air longer then a week From 70 down to 40 then hoover around 28. Still chasing that one.
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Old 09-01-2018, 10:50 PM   #18
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Just got mine back from the Ford Dealer, there Alignment computer went out, and a week later it's done, it is better but still room for improvement, and they wouldn't look at the air bags. mine don't hold air longer then a week From 70 down to 40 then hoover around 28. Still chasing that one.
When we took delivery of our 3051 the air bags had 30 lbs in them. After loading (and weighing it) it didn't ride as well as before. We experimented and found for our use, 70 - 75 psi rides best.

I have to top them off before each trip and sometimes during a long trip. They will not stay at 70 - 75 psi for long and as you said, they hang around 40 and lower the more the rig sits. Must be the nature of the beast.

If you want a real eye opener concerning air bag pressure, put a TPMS transmitter on one and watch the wild up and down pressure swings, especially when turning. I had hoped to keep up with the pressure that way but the alarms were unnerving.
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Old 09-02-2018, 05:00 AM   #19
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If you want a real eye opener concerning air bag pressure, put a TPMS transmitter on one and watch the wild up and down pressure swings, especially when turning. I had hoped to keep up with the pressure that way but the alarms were unnerving.
Tried that too...yikes
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Old 09-02-2018, 06:45 AM   #20
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I have found that my air bags lose about 1 pound a day. I fill mine to about 72 but if we stay in one spot more than 10 days I pump them up before we leave. I have found that if you try to fill them with the jacks down it gives you a false reading.
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