Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
John E Davies

Spring over axle suspension lift

Recommended Posts

I asked Oliver if they could do a spring over axle mod during a new build and they refused due to liability reasons. Did they used to offer a lift as a factory option? I even offered to sign a liability release. Maybe this is due to the larger 16 inch wheels and tires already lifting it some, and they do not want it any higher?

 

I wanted to have the very high build quality of a factory mod rather than a risky aftermarket job through some local trailer shop, plus it would save me a lot of money and labor and hassles. I do not want to worry about relocating and rewelding the upper shock mounts. I am concerned about burning off the galvanizing of the brackets,and damaging the steel to aluminum joint. Ideally the entire upper suspension brackets should be off the trailer for welding, then have them regalvanized and reinstall them with fresh sealer.

 

Anyway, it looks as if I will have to get it done locally. Or do it myself and haul the axles and upper mounts down to a shop for welding. Any suggestions for dealing with the upper shock mounts? Rather than relocate them, could I use them with longer automotive shocks and add separate mounting plates at the bottom of the axle? In other words, lift the frame but keep the shock locations as they were. The problem with that is the angles would change and the upper mounts would not be aligned.

 

See REMOUNT THE SHOCK ABSORBERS half way down this page .... http://www.doityourselfrv.com/axle-flipping-guide-flip-axles-trailer-ground-clearance-better-boondocking/

 

Regardless of how I get this accomplished, I suspect my frame warranty is going to be affected. That's why I wanted Oliver to do the work.

 

Thanks for any comments.

 

John Davies

Spokane WA


"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know the flipped axle was offered on the smaller trailer, but I'm not sure if it ever was on the larger.

 

I can't see how a raised axle would add stress to the frame, so doing so may be fine with Oliver as far as warranty work goes. Have you asked? I'm sure they would no longer warrant the axles, springs, etc.

 

If you have it done yourself, at least you could do the upgraded EZ Flex then and maybe save some money on the install. I'd take the opportunity to strengthen the spring mounts as well. But that obviously means re-galvanizing.

 

You might be able to keep the shock mount in the same position as it is and just install a new plate over the spring to attach the u-bolts. Assuming the plate would clear the shocks of course.

 

When (if) I got around to ordering, I was going to talk to Oliver about them offering an upgraded suspension package sourced from someone like AL-KO (http://www.alko.com.au/al-ko-enduro/). They be more willing to do something like that, since it is engineered and off the shelf, and could perhaps be bought as a complete subframe that installs the same as what they have now. I believe they just merged with Dexter, so they might even be able to get it through them. Who knows what the cost would be, though. Might be worth asking. It would certainly help my decision if I knew that were an option.

 

Unfortunately, I don't think as a consumer you can buy directly from them.

 

Oliver is getting noticed by the overland crowd, but I think for them to truly be appealing to that market, they'd need a more rugged suspension option of some sort. Of course, they may not be interested in that segment and that's fine. It's a small market, but of course it's a market that doesn't blink an eye at $200k EarthCruisers, $350k Earth Roamers, or even million dollar plus Unimogs.


Snowball • LE2 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you have it done yourself, at least you could do the upgraded EZ Flex then and maybe save some money on the install. I'd take the opportunity to strengthen the spring mounts as well. But that obviously means re-galvanizing.

 

They did agree to install the EZ Flex, see my separate thread about that.

 

When (if) I got around to ordering, I was going to talk to Oliver about them offering an upgraded suspension package sourced from someone like AL-KO (
). They
be more willing to do something like that, since it is engineered and off the shelf, and could perhaps be bought as a complete subframe that installs the same as what they have now. I believe they just merged with Dexter, so they might even be able to get it through them. Who knows what the cost would be, though. Might be worth asking. It would certainly help my decision if I knew that were an option.

 

Unfortunately, I don't think as a consumer you can buy directly from them..

 

I had to run to the shower to cool off when I read that part. I would love to see that sort of true off road suspension under an Ollie, but it will never happen. They have a solid steady market among older wealthier folks, many of them retired, who really don't go far from services. The risk of wrecking your trailer is huge when you start dragging it among boulders, under low branches and through streams. I for one would never risk it. OTH I would love to be able to drive at moderate speed on dirt roads and not worry that the axle was going to break if I hit an unseen dip.

 

Adventure Trailers in Prescott AZ at one time announced that they would sell their wonderful single independent airbag suspension as a kit to install on any trailer, for $3000 per "axle", but they decided not to. The Al-KO one would be a great choice but it is not as advanced a design. If you want to see a wonderf setup, look under a Moby1 Offroad teardrop....

 

Honestly, I think with a lift and the EZ Flex upgrade it will be dandy. Just keeping the moving parts well greased does wonders for ride quality and suspension compliance. No nasty noises, either (creaks, pops, bangs and groans, waking everybody as you try to sneak out of the campground at the crack of dawn).

 

I do worry about pranging the body into an obstacle. I have thought about how easy it would be for a race car or 4x4 fabrication shop to build a stout perimeter frame from DOM tubing that would give excellent body protection all around. You could incorporate a lift and a complete subframe to mount your AL-KO axles to. But that would be a mult-thousand $ mod and I am not sure I would ever attempt it.

 

If wishes were fishes, we would all cast nets.

 

John Davies

Spokane WA


"Mouse":  2017 Legacy Elite II NARV (Not An RV) Two Beds, Hull Number 218, See my HOW TO threads: https://olivertraveltrailers.com/topic/john-e-davies-how-to-threads-and-tech-articles-links/

 

Tow Vehicle: 2013 Land Cruiser 200, 33" LT tires, airbags.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You might try giving the guys at VMI a call. They're in Bellingham which isn't too far from you I suppose. I know they've done an upgraded suspension for at least one Airstream, and they'll do a trailing arm upgrade for their own trailers. They might be able to build you a subframe and suspension for a reasonable price. It's worth calling to see.


Snowball • LE2 256 • 2018 Ford Raptor

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...