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Old 06-11-2016, 07:41 AM   #1
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Inspection of 5th Wheel Suspension System

Approaching 18,000 miles of pulling my 2013 Sanibel trailer and want to inspect the suspension system (shocks, leaf springs, links, etc). Besides a good visual inspection for the ugly and obvious. What are the procedures for checking the shocks and the suspension links? Is a disassembly required to check the bronze bushings? Any input would be appreciated.

2013 Sanibel 3500
2013 Ram Truck 3500 Laramie Longhorn Dually

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Old 06-11-2016, 08:34 AM   #2
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Pulling out a shackle bolt is about the only way to really tell of internal wear of bushing or bolt. If pulling them, might look into replacing with a wet system. Since you are unable to tell anything about the shocks by the ride, removing and checking each is about only way. Although I wouldn't be too concerned with them with only 18k miles

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Old 06-11-2016, 08:41 AM   #3
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I would do the Dexter recommended maint. by pulling the hubs and checking the brake linings, magnet and for any grease that may have gotten past the rear seal. Remove all old grease and repack the bearings by hand. You must replace the rear seals when you pull the hubs also. During this time I also grease and check the wet bolts. If you have kept the wet bolts greased I would not pull the bolts, and Dexter does not recommend pulling the bolts. But insure that you are getting new grease into the wet bolts easy to do when the wheels are off. The rest is just to eye ball the hanger brackets for any broken weld and such. No way to test the shock without removing it, with that few miles I would just call them good for awhile.
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Old 06-11-2016, 07:09 PM   #4
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On 2 previous 5th wheel trailers I found the spring shackles and nylon bushings to be nearly shot at less that 10,000 miles. I recommend ordering the Dexter wet bolt kits (greasable) shackles and bronze bushings for rig. It's no more work to replace them than it is to inspect them. If you're not comfortable doing this, find a commercial truck spring shop and have them do it. First time I paid to have this done was $500 plus the cost of the parts. You won't believe how worn and flimsy the original suspension components are.
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Old 06-11-2016, 07:46 PM   #5
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My 2015 Hemi with less than 2000, counting mileage from factory had almost all of them wore out. Replaced with Never Fail and installed the Joy Rider Shock Kit right after purchase and was surprised to fine them already wore out.
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Old 06-11-2016, 09:22 PM   #6
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My Sanibel came with the wet bolts, bronze bushings, and heavy duty shackles from the factory. I have greased them every 3000 miles. How long can I expect them to last? Getting ready to clean and grease them and will do a good visual on the links, brackets, and leaf springs. Just was wondering how long I should go before doing a disassemble of the items to visually check the bushing?
2013 Sanibel 3500
2013 Ram Truck 3500 Laramie Longhorn Dually

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Old 06-12-2016, 03:26 PM   #7
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5th wheel suspension mods

We have a 2014 43' Sierra 5th wheel. We have been full-timers since April 2014, and have traveled from the Maritime Provinces in Canada to San Diego, plus numerous places in between (Texas is our domicile state).

About 3 months ago, I decided to replace the factory OEM suspension with a MoRyd SRE4000 system. I bought the system from a large RV supplier who was familiar with MoRyd, and personally knew the MoRyd folks. I had the system installed by a reputable RV dealer close to where we dropped anchor for a couple of weeks. I made an appointment, and the dealer subsequently installed the system in about 2 1/2 hours while I waited. The install cost was $275.

When the techs pulled the old spring hangers and equalizers off, we discovered that the bushings were just made of nylon, which of course were completely shredded. I was amazed that FR would do this on a rig with a GVWR of nearly 16,000#!

The MoRyd system includes bronze bushings, plus I also had wet bolts installed. Examining the thickness/strength of the OEM hangers compared to the MoRyd hangers showed a huge difference. The MoRyd system was infinitely stronger and better built. In my opinion, replacing the stock suspension components was worth every penny, not only for the huskier hangers, greater equalizer range of motion, but also for my own piece of mind.

I have no involvement with MoRyd other than as a customer, but I am pleased.

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