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Old 08-27-2016, 04:51 PM   #201
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Originally Posted by vwexpert View Post
Sage...Amazon has the sways - 7718 front $200.00 / 7180 rear $230.00. Did you ever have the alignment re-done to get a higher caster angle?
Jim
Yes, Total loss told me about Bob's Alignment near me. Great guy and excellent service. Really knows his stuff and corrected the botched alignment done under FR warranty. Changed out the cam bushings. Set caster high.
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Old 08-28-2016, 01:07 AM   #202
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Originally Posted by vwexpert View Post
Sage...Amazon has the sways - 7718 front $200.00 / 7180 rear $230.00. Did you ever have the alignment re-done to get a higher caster angle?
Jim

Sage, the part numbers from Vwexpert are the ones we used for our unit. Interesting that you said that one of your bolts on the bracket were loose or felt stripped. I was going to see if others had the same problem we had when installing the front swaybar. The main two brackets that bolt the swaybar to the frame have a front and back bolt for each bracket . We noticed when taking the original swaybar off that the back bolts seemed to easy to remove. Once we put the Helwig swaybar on and started tightening the back bolts they both strip right thru the frame. The front bolts have a nut welded to the frame, so no problem tightening those. The back bolts only have a few threads in the frame for those to tighten to. Bad design. Quick fix for us was to remove front bumper so we could get our hand inside the frame and back the back bolts with a nylon locking but. Worked great and now we are good to go.
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Old 08-28-2016, 01:19 AM   #203
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Sage, the part numbers from Vwexpert are the ones we used for our unit. Interesting that you said that one of your bolts on the bracket were loose or felt stripped. I was going to see if others had the same problem we had when installing the front swaybar. The main two brackets that bolt the swaybar to the frame have a front and back bolt for each bracket . We noticed when taking the original swaybar off that the back bolts seemed to easy to remove. Once we put the Helwig swaybar on and started tightening the back bolts they both strip right thru the frame. The front bolts have a nut welded to the frame, so no problem tightening those. The back bolts only have a few threads in the frame for those to tighten to. Bad design. Quick fix for us was to remove front bumper so we could get our hand inside the frame and back the back bolts with a nylon locking but. Worked great and now we are good to go.
I think my loose/stripped bolt has the same issue of no threads to grab into the frame. Hopefully, Bob the alignment guy can resolve this without any great expense. I'm sure he has encountered this before. Perhaps, he can get a bolt in there somehow.
Oh before I forget, how does it handle with wind and passing cars now?

Thanks for the information.
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Old 08-28-2016, 01:49 AM   #204
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Originally Posted by Sagecoachdriver View Post
I think my loose/stripped bolt has the same issue of no threads to grab into the frame. Hopefully, Bob the alignment guy can resolve this without any great expense. I'm sure he has encountered this before. Perhaps, he can get a bolt in there somehow.
Oh before I forget, how does it handle with wind and passing cars now?

Thanks for the information.

Handles a lot better now in the wind and passing cars.
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Old 08-29-2016, 09:44 AM   #205
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Originally Posted by Forester Fred View Post
Total Loss - FR has alignment specs listed for the Ford chassis. Is there anything special for the Chevy 4500 or just go with Chevy specs? I've got 12,000 miles of bumping, potholes and rough roads so I'm figuring an alignment might be some good preventive maintenance at this point.

Also, I'm looking at getting Bilstein shocks. I see they list the comfort and standard models for Fords but only have one listing or the Chevy 4500, which they list as heavy duty. Are the heavy duty models going to be too stiff on a Chevy with a 25' coach?

Here is what I posted in the other alignment thread:

Here is my results from the alignment.
Toe set to 1/32 in
Camber set to 0
Caster- added 1 left and 1/2 rt. (6 and 5 I believe afterwards he said)

Here is the thread:

http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...sue-96636.html

I bought the Bilsteins for the front only.
They made it handle much better and reduced the "jounce" or rebound considerably - they did not really stiffen the ride.
I did not change the rears yet.
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Old 08-30-2016, 02:46 PM   #206
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Sage, the part numbers from Vwexpert are the ones we used for our unit. Interesting that you said that one of your bolts on the bracket were loose or felt stripped. I was going to see if others had the same problem we had when installing the front swaybar. The main two brackets that bolt the swaybar to the frame have a front and back bolt for each bracket . We noticed when taking the original swaybar off that the back bolts seemed to easy to remove. Once we put the Helwig swaybar on and started tightening the back bolts they both strip right thru the frame. The front bolts have a nut welded to the frame, so no problem tightening those. The back bolts only have a few threads in the frame for those to tighten to. Bad design. Quick fix for us was to remove front bumper so we could get our hand inside the frame and back the back bolts with a nylon locking but. Worked great and now we are good to go.
Just got back from the alignment shop. Yeap, Ben they had to do the same thing as you did, had to place a nut on the bolt from the inside. Secure now. Suggested I start with just the front sway bar and get the 1 3/8" bar. Said it would make a big difference on the road with wind and passing vehicles. Going to order it later today.
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Old 08-30-2016, 05:50 PM   #207
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Sage...I was told (and confirmed on many websites) to replace front and rear sway bars together to get the proper sway balance. Front and rear need to work in harmony and compliment each other. Same goes with shocks and springs. The original sway bars are too light weight to properly handle our 7 tons of weight.
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Old 08-30-2016, 08:52 PM   #208
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Sage...I was told (and confirmed on many websites) to replace front and rear sway bars together to get the proper sway balance. Front and rear need to work in harmony and compliment each other. Same goes with shocks and springs. The original sway bars are too light weight to properly handle our 7 tons of weight.
That's what I thought, do both. But the old timer alignment shop said let's do only the front for starters. Hummmmm! vwexpert, since you have a shop, I suppose you did the install yourself. Anyone want to chime in on the install cost?
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Old 08-30-2016, 09:38 PM   #209
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I had both installed at a shop here, along with Bilstein HD shocks and an alignment. I think my total tab was < $300. If you are on the fence at all- do the full treatment. Absolutely worth it!
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Old 08-30-2016, 10:36 PM   #210
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It was very simple to install sway bars. The hardest part was the front support bolts - those sucka's were tight. I took me about an hour to install.
Jim
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Old 08-31-2016, 12:27 AM   #211
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Just got back from the alignment shop. Yeap, Ben they had to do the same thing as you did, had to place a nut on the bolt from the inside. Secure now. Suggested I start with just the front sway bar and get the 1 3/8" bar. Said it would make a big difference on the road with wind and passing vehicles. Going to order it later today.

Sage, I finally had my alignment done today. $250 later. They had to put a shim on one side. $70 just for the shim. Is that right?
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Old 08-31-2016, 01:16 AM   #212
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Sage, I finally had my alignment done today. $250 later. They had to put a shim on one side. $70 just for the shim. Is that right?
That's about what FR paid for the first alignment where they put in 3/4˚ bushings and what I paid for the second alignment where they installed 2˚ bushings. Both alignments replaced both.
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Old 08-31-2016, 01:30 AM   #213
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Out of FR warranty tomorrow

My warranty runs out tomorrow, 1 year anniversary of our purchase and I'm still playing around with the ride.
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Old 08-31-2016, 01:37 AM   #214
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Congrats on the one year anniversary. We had our one year anniversary back in June. Like you said still playing with our rides and probably will be as long as we own them.
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Old 08-31-2016, 10:23 PM   #215
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Helwig 7718 for E-450?

Ready to order on Amazon and it says it for Ford E150-350, no mention of the E450. You guys must have E450's as I think that's all FR uses.
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Old 09-01-2016, 12:41 AM   #216
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Yes, I have the E450. Also ordered from Amazon. Very poor packaging. The boxes were ripped when they arrived at the house . No damage to the parts though. The helwig sway bars are 100% better than the factory sway bars. Good luck with your install.
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Old 09-01-2016, 12:54 AM   #217
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Yes, I have the E450. Also ordered from Amazon. Very poor packaging. The boxes were ripped when they arrived at the house . No damage to the parts though. The helwig sway bars are 100% better than the factory sway bars. Good luck with your install.
It's ordered and arriving friday , I think. Did you install them yourself Ben?
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Old 09-01-2016, 01:10 AM   #218
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It's ordered and arriving friday , I think. Did you install them yourself Ben?

Yes I did with some help . You need at least two people. Took a couple hours only because of the front sway bar main bracket back bolt holes being stripped in the frame as I explained in an earlier post.
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Old 09-02-2016, 11:54 PM   #219
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Helwig 7718

Is this what yours came with or is there more parts ?
Looks easy for 1 person to do the front. Should be here tomorrow.
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Old 09-03-2016, 12:41 AM   #220
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Is this what yours came with or is there more parts ?
Looks easy for 1 person to do the front. Should be here tomorrow.

Front is easier than the back. They are just a lot heavier than the factory swaybars. The rear swaybar has more parts than the front.
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