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Exceed 2019 Suspension upgrade for towing large caravan

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  • Exceed 2019 Suspension upgrade for towing large caravan

    I wasn't sure if I should add to other threads about suspension or start a new one.

    I have a 2019 Exceed, all standard accessories, no plan to add any.

    We recently bought a caravan, haven't had a chance to take it to the weight bridge, but Tare is 2.5, so fully packed will probably be around the 2.8 - 3, which I know is near the the limits of the car.


    Stats:
    Tow ball weight - Currently 220kg (this may need to increase to keep the 10% weight ratio, so could be around 280kg and the numbers below could end up worse)

    Back Wheel height:
    Before: 560
    After: 520 - 515
    Difference: 40-45mm down

    Front Wheel Height
    Before: 525 - 520
    After: 535
    Difference: 10 - 15mm up

    Tow ball Height
    Before: 565
    After: 490
    Difference 75mm down

    Planned usage:
    Daily driver with minimal extra weights, just kids, shopping etc
    Touring away for weekends every couple of weeks and most of the school holidays
    When towing the car will just have kids and day trip items drinks/snacks etc, no plan for car fridge etc.
    No real 4WDing, just dirt roads when free camping or exploring national parks etc

    From what I have read on here the King springs upgrade and bump stop is a minimum but I'm not sure if it will be enough with the larger caravan so I may need something a bit more robust?

    I am based in western Sydney and am not mechanically inclined so would have the work done at a suspension specialist or mechanic.

    What are some recommendations?

    Edit to add:
    I don't have a WDH, if I do require which is better? The Anderson or Hayman Reese or something else?
    I am fine if I end up with some lift, nothing too crazy, but whatever will make towing safer.

  • #2
    I would not do a thing until you get the rig weighed. 1st time empty to get its true tare. Second time full to see if it is in legal weight. They say a tare of 2.5 tonne. I,d be very surprised if this is a true figure. Many have been told lies about the true weight in an effort to make a sale. Many have seen their new vans way too heavy to legally tow.


    Once weighed then you can work out suspension , wdh,s and the rest.
    Dicko FNQ


    2014 NW with all the usual stuff plus more.
    Having lots of friends on facebook is the same as having lots of money in monopoly...both meaningless.

    .

    Telegraph X camper

    Comment


    • #3
      Minimum legal ride height on the rear suspension on a Pajero Sport is 519mm so your ar at that point already.

      So, what to do next.

      1. Load up the caravan measure ball weight and all ride heights. Make sure you are parked on level flat ground.
      2. Go to a weigh bridge and get the hitched up front, rear and trailer axle weights.
      3. I assume the caravan is dual axle, does it have load sharing leaf suspension or independent suspension?
      4. When all loaded and hitched up is the drawbar level? What height is the bottom of the A frame at the front and rear?

      OJ.
      Last edited by old Jack; 21-09-20, 07:43 PM. Reason: spelling correction
      2011 PB Base White Auto, Smartbar, Cooper STMaxx LT235/85R-16,TPMS, HR TB, 3 x Bushskinz, front +40mm Dobinson , rear +50mm EHDVR Lovells, Dobinson MT struts and shockers, Peddars 5899 cone springs, Windcheater rack, GME UHF, Custom alloy drawer system inc. 30lt Engel & 2 x 30 AH LiFePo batteries + elec controls, Tailgate hi-lift/long struts, Phillips +100 LB & HB, Lightforce 20" single row driving beam LED lightbar, Scanguage II.
      MM4x4 Auto Mate, Serial No 1 .

      Comment


      • #4
        Hello Josmond, welcome to the forum.

        According to Red Book your Exceed has a GCM of 5400 kg, a kerb weight of 2210 kg and a GVM of 2775 kg.

        Hook your 2800 kg caravan on the back and the GVM of your Pajero Sport is limited to 2600kg (5400 - 2800 kg).

        If you load your Exceed to 2600 you are limited to a 175 kg ball weight - that's the difference between your 2600 kg limit to keep you under your GCM (with a 2800 kg van), and Mitsubishi's ultimate GVM limit.

        With a 220 kg ball weight, and keeping below Mitsubishi's GVM figure, you can only load you Exceed to 2555 kg if you plan to stay legal - that's kerb weight of 2210 kg and a 345 kg payload, after a full tank of fuel, but before your towbar, bull bar (if you have one), passengers, luggage & driver.

        Don't increase your tow ball weight to 10%. At 280 kg ball weight you're back to a 285 kg payload.

        If you load your van to 3000 kg your Exceed can only weigh 2400 - that's GCM of 5400 kg, minus 3000 kg. With a kerb weight of 2210 kg you would have a nominal payload of 190 kg.

        As Dicko and OJ have said, you need to have your van, and your Pajero Sport, weighed.
        NT Platinum. DiD Auto with 265/70R17 Toyo MT, Lift, Lockers, Lockup Mate, Low range reduction, LRA Aux tank, bull bar, winch, lots of touring stuff. Flappy paddles. MMCS is gone!

        Project: NJ SWB. 285/75R16 ST Maxx, 2" OME suspension, 2" body lift, ARB 110, 120l tank, bullbar, scratches, no major dents. Fully engineered in SA. NW DiD & auto in place - a long way to go....

        Scorpro Explorer Box

        Comment


        • #5
          I was just going through the same numbers to post but nj beat me to it.

          Your van is basically as heavy if not heavier than your vehicle and that's a big problem in my book. I've been involved in weighing vans and cars for a while and I don't think you have the right combination and will struggle to stay legal or safe.

          As for a WDH, definitely, it might keep you under the numbers. Upgraded springs will help the sag but do nothing to alter the weight problem.
          2015 NX GLS, Factory alloy bar, Kings HD Springs & Koni Shocks with 50mm lift, MM Auto Mate, Paddle shift kit, dual batteries with Redarc DC/DC, LRA 58L tank, Safari snorkel, Boo's bash plates (full set), 17" steels with BFG KO2's, Drifta drawers with slide, TPMS, Uniden UH8080S, Alpine iLX-702D head unit. Goldstream caravan and a TVan Firetail.

          Comment


          • #6
            Thank you all for the quick responses, appreciate all of the expertise of this forum.

            Hmm, I guess I should have done further reading and understanding before buying the van
            I won't be able to upgrade to a new car for another 18 months (at which point I'll have to do even more research), so need to make sure I can get it legal until then.

            To answer question:
            I assume the caravan is dual axle, does it have load sharing leaf suspension or independent suspension?
            Yes, dual axle with load sharing leaf suspension: https://www.nccrv.com.au/stock/23-st...e-ensuite.html


            So next steps:
            1. Get the Van weighed
              Should this be when packed ready to go or empty? We've almost finished packing it since I figured it would make more sense to do the measurements with how we intend to use it rather than empty, then we can remove stuff if required or know what the remaining payload would be
            2. Double check all ride heights and levels with van attached
              As above, should this be when packed ready to go or empty?


            For weighing I'll go to a weighbridge, but was considering getting one of these to do incremental testing of moving things around to adjust weights: https://www.outbackequipment.com.au/...-orange-1500kg
            The local weighbridge is $45 so I figure it would pay for itself fairly quickly as I iterate through testing of weight, has anyone used it and what are your thoughts on it?

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi Josmond,

              While it's important to understand your weights and balances from a safety and stability perspective you're also into the realm of remaining legal - you'll need to walk a relatively fine line. I think the scale you linked is a reasonably good idea, but note "Deviation <3%" - which I presume is their accuracy spec. Little information on precisely how that "3%" is calculated, but it could be 3% of 1500kg, or +/- 45kg. By all means buy one for sorting out your loadings, but get your final configuration checked at a certified weigh bridge - and ensure they provide data on the accuracy of all the numbers they give you e.g. XXXX kg +/- YY kg.

              Ultimately, you need to know your weights at full touring load - this is where you're most likely to run into trouble, both safety wise and legality wise. I'm a numbers geek, so I'd also want to know all the empty figures, but these are less important - if you're unfortunate enough to be involved in an accident only the weights (car and van) on the day will be relevant.

              Don't be too hung up on Australia's fascination with a 10% ball weight. It's an industry "rule of thumb", not a legal requirement. With heavier vans, and particularly dual axles, it's being recognised that a range of 5% - 10% is more realistic, with some engineering studies concluding that 6% - 7% is about ideal. Too light, and pitching of the caravan at highway speeds could de-stabilise the tow tug - too heavy, and you'll overload the rear suspension (and probably exceed your GVM rating). Again, a well designed dual axle van suspension should help to control any dynamic changes at highway speeds.

              Keep in mind weight transfer during a trip, such as transfer of fluids in and out of water and waste tanks. This can have an effect on ball mass, which (just to reiterate) can have both legal and safety (stability) implications.

              Finally, be very careful about heavy weights too far from the axles. A 2800kg caravan with most of the mass located near the axles will be much more stable on the highway than a 2800kg caravan with the mass divided at the front and rear of the van. Same mass, same COG, same ball weight, different dynamics.

              You've got yourself a great project here - experimenting with loadings and finding a good solution will keep you busy for many hours.
              NT Platinum. DiD Auto with 265/70R17 Toyo MT, Lift, Lockers, Lockup Mate, Low range reduction, LRA Aux tank, bull bar, winch, lots of touring stuff. Flappy paddles. MMCS is gone!

              Project: NJ SWB. 285/75R16 ST Maxx, 2" OME suspension, 2" body lift, ARB 110, 120l tank, bullbar, scratches, no major dents. Fully engineered in SA. NW DiD & auto in place - a long way to go....

              Scorpro Explorer Box

              Comment


              • #8
                It's a common mistake mate and sussing it out is a minefield. People go to the caravan dealer and he says your car is fine, it can tow 3100kg so here you go, there's a van which is only 3000kg. But that's not reality, no car can safely tow it's maximum allowable caravan mass and still have room for passengers and gear. My NX Paj tows a 2000kg van which gets up to about 2400 loaded which gets me very close to the car's limit and the Paj NX has more capacity and is heavier than the Sport.

                Firstly, you need to load it up before going to the weighbridge and fill the water tanks. They'll add 160-180kg assuming 2 80/90L tanks. I hope they are on either side of the axles and not both in front as I've seen sometimes.

                You need to check the weights of the individual axles on the car and check the results against the allowable limits according to Mitsibishi. The rear axle is the one you can easily over load if not careful.

                If you have a van weighing company around, spend the extra and get them to go over it. The weighbridge is OK but they have a tolerance built in and are not accurate to a few kgs and it could be critical if you are that close. If not, then the weighbridge will have to do.

                A WDH will transfer weight from the rear axle of the car and put more on the front axle and the van. It's a must have in your situation and I'd be looking at the Anderson type.

                I did a video for our 4WD club which might help explain it better.

                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOX3...=Idlers4WDClub

                and if you want to give yourself a fright......

                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CJ7VhUiwGd0
                Last edited by Ian H; 08-09-20, 01:09 PM.
                2015 NX GLS, Factory alloy bar, Kings HD Springs & Koni Shocks with 50mm lift, MM Auto Mate, Paddle shift kit, dual batteries with Redarc DC/DC, LRA 58L tank, Safari snorkel, Boo's bash plates (full set), 17" steels with BFG KO2's, Drifta drawers with slide, TPMS, Uniden UH8080S, Alpine iLX-702D head unit. Goldstream caravan and a TVan Firetail.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hi all, so we went to the weight bridge today and here are the results.

                  I had the van and car fully packed including full water tanks.

                  Weights (with van hitched):
                  Front Axle: 1100
                  Back Axle: 1600
                  Total: 2680
                  (I know they don't add up but the total was the weight when the whole car was on the weigh section, axle I think was done with a bit of calculation and maybe rounding)

                  Van: 2820
                  Tow ball: 280
                  GCM: 5500

                  Weights (with van Unhictched)
                  Car: 2400
                  Van: 3100


                  _____Before___After___Diff
                  FL____530_____540____10
                  FR____530_____540____10
                  BL____555_____505___-50
                  BR____545_____505___-40
                  TB____460_____370___-90


                  Weight Limits:
                  My GVM is under (2775 - 2680 = 95)
                  My GCM is over (5400 - 5500 = -100)
                  My rear axle is on the limit (1600)

                  So need to lose at least 100kg of stuff from the van.

                  Height Limits:
                  As per OJ, the back limit is 519 and I am well below that at 505, so need to have lift under weight of at least 15mm


                  Whats the recommendation in regards to the suspension?
                  Which springs? Should I also do the shocks? Air bags? WDH?

                  Aiming to get away for the October School holidays here in NSW, so will need to get it all sorted of the next few weeks.
                  Last edited by josmond; 14-09-20, 06:33 PM.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Top tips for caravanners:

                    If a caravan heavier than two tonnes begins to sway, enact the independent brakes rather than the vehicle's
                    Do not accelerate if a caravan that weighs less than two tonnes, and does not have independent brakes, begins to sway
                    Avoid swaying by driving to the conditions, correctly positioning the load and knowing the vehicle's capabilities
                    Do not speed

                    Source: Australian Four Wheel Driving and Advanced Driver Education
                    200 Series
                    AOR Quantum 4

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by josmond View Post
                      Hi all, so we went to the weight bridge today and here are the results.

                      I had the van and car fully packed including full water tanks.

                      Weights (with van hitched):
                      Front Axle: 1100
                      Back Axle: 1600
                      Total: 2680
                      (I know they don't add up but the total was the weight when the whole car was on the weigh section, axle I think was done with a bit of calculation and maybe rounding)

                      Van: 2820
                      Tow ball: 280
                      GCM: 5500

                      Weights (with van Unhictched)
                      Car: 2400
                      Van: 3100


                      _____Before___After___Diff
                      FL____530_____540____10
                      FR____530_____540____10
                      BL____555_____505___-50
                      BR____545_____505___-40
                      TB____460_____370___-90


                      Weight Limits:
                      My GVM is under (2775 - 2680 = 95)
                      My GCM is over (5400 - 5500 = -100)
                      My rear axle is on the limit (1600)

                      So need to lose at least 100kg of stuff from the van.

                      Height Limits:
                      As per OJ, the back limit is 519 and I am well below that at 505, so need to have lift under weight of at least 15mm


                      Whats the recommendation in regards to the suspension?
                      Which springs? Should I also do the shocks? Air bags? WDH?

                      Aiming to get away for the October School holidays here in NSW, so will need to get it all sorted of the next few weeks.
                      You have really pushed the limits of the factory suspension.

                      1. I would strongly recommend the use of a WDH such as an Anderson hitch. Your 280kg of ball load is also transferring about 130kg off the front axle and onto the rear axle, so this is 410kg of rear axle load, it is no wonder the rear suspension is struggling.This will mean you will not need to fit an EHD coil that will be too high and strong for everyday duties. Anderson WDH have the benefit of load transfer and sway reduction whilst still having coupling articulation. Cost about $900

                      2. I would replace the rear coils with King KCRS-23 coils, these will give about a 10mm increase in the empty ride height and firm up the rear suspension but not too much when unloaded but will carry the towball loads better than the factory coils especially with a correctly setup WDH. Cost $160 to $200 for coils and about 1.5 to 2 hours to fit, so about $200 -$250 for labour.

                      3. No secret that I am not a fan of airbags and you may need them but first I would try fitting a pair of Aeon 5899 replacement rubber cone springs, these are available from Peddars for $125 a pair RRP and are easily changed at the same time as the rear coils These cone spring only start to work once the suspension is partially compressed and they progressively add extra spring rate to assist the coils.

                      OJ.
                      2011 PB Base White Auto, Smartbar, Cooper STMaxx LT235/85R-16,TPMS, HR TB, 3 x Bushskinz, front +40mm Dobinson , rear +50mm EHDVR Lovells, Dobinson MT struts and shockers, Peddars 5899 cone springs, Windcheater rack, GME UHF, Custom alloy drawer system inc. 30lt Engel & 2 x 30 AH LiFePo batteries + elec controls, Tailgate hi-lift/long struts, Phillips +100 LB & HB, Lightforce 20" single row driving beam LED lightbar, Scanguage II.
                      MM4x4 Auto Mate, Serial No 1 .

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        The car was loaded but did that include passengers ?

                        A WDH is needed BUT while it will help the car, it will throw weight back on the van and it's already too heavy as you said. Weight won't disappear no matter what you do, it just gets transferred.

                        A van weighing that much more than the tow vehicle is a recipe for problems and could be dangerous. Sorry to say but I think your car and van combination is wrong.
                        2015 NX GLS, Factory alloy bar, Kings HD Springs & Koni Shocks with 50mm lift, MM Auto Mate, Paddle shift kit, dual batteries with Redarc DC/DC, LRA 58L tank, Safari snorkel, Boo's bash plates (full set), 17" steels with BFG KO2's, Drifta drawers with slide, TPMS, Uniden UH8080S, Alpine iLX-702D head unit. Goldstream caravan and a TVan Firetail.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Car was loaded, with passengers, Wife was with me and weighed the kids before school and substituted them with the appropriate amount of weight using weights from the home gym.

                          Agreed that the combination isn't great, but I can't upgrade car for 18 months, I just want to make it legal and as safe as possible and will keep the trips on the smaller side until car upgrade happens.

                          Found a place not far from me that has the springs for $168 (https://automotivesuperstore.com.au/...prings-kcrs-23)

                          For the bump stops: http://shop.pedders.com.au/pedders-bump-stop-5899.html
                          I assume I just need to call around to find a local pedders shop who has a set since I can't seem to order online?

                          Anderson WDH, seems like most places are around the $940-$970 depending on the size of the drop hitch required (https://swaycontrolhitches.com.au/pr...ibution-hitch/)

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Don't forget that the Anderson is another 27 kg being added to your GCM.
                            NT Platinum. DiD Auto with 265/70R17 Toyo MT, Lift, Lockers, Lockup Mate, Low range reduction, LRA Aux tank, bull bar, winch, lots of touring stuff. Flappy paddles. MMCS is gone!

                            Project: NJ SWB. 285/75R16 ST Maxx, 2" OME suspension, 2" body lift, ARB 110, 120l tank, bullbar, scratches, no major dents. Fully engineered in SA. NW DiD & auto in place - a long way to go....

                            Scorpro Explorer Box

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              OJ, what ride height would I likely to be at with the 280kg tow ball weight? I assume that it should bring it back to well within legal limits.

                              Also I did all of the above with 2 full water tanks, so can drop 180kg by running empty tanks, which when going between Caravan parks we will, its only when we go free camping that we would need the water tanks.

                              Comment

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