Chevy Astro for Tow - Page 3 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-29-2007, 07:17 PM   #29
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I don't think that "inherently inferior" describes it at all...
Hmmm, I'm pretty sure I didn't say "inherently"...

... but we seem now to be thinking in the same direction: improve the tug's ability to tug. The wheelbase can't be fixed (in practical terms), but the tires and suspension can be upgraded.

There was a time when people chose the Astro - and similarly the Ford Aerostar - specifically for their towing capabilities. There certainly should be a great body of related knowledge available. The Wikipedia page for the Astro has some interesting information (such as the use of Caprice front suspension parts) which could also hint at potential tweaks.

There were three different rear door/hatch designs for the Astro/Safari, so anyone who hasn't already bought their's might watch for the one that suits them. There was the upswinging hatch, side hinged double doors (mostly on commercial versions) and a three-piece setup with a glass hatch plus two lower doors... but I don't know which ones were used when.
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Old 01-29-2007, 08:00 PM   #30
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I guess the previous owner of my van fixed all that before I came along. The tires were oversized and the rear had bags.

My Van's Particulars
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Old 01-29-2007, 08:22 PM   #31
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I agree, John, that identifying, locating, and fixing the problems that make a particular tow vehicle/trailer be more prone to sway is appropriate. Once that's done, however, using sway control is also prudent. As in using any equipment, one should know both the benefits and limitations of that equipment, and sway control certainly has some.

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Old 01-29-2007, 08:37 PM   #32
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I don't think there should be any reason to use a friction-type sway control with a trailer, and especially not with a tandem-axle design such as the Fiber Stream.
As a general observation, I concur. Since I tow with a front-wheel drive Odyssey, and since the trailer already included all of the extra equipment (Weight Distributing Hitch and Friction Anti-Sway Bar) when I bought it, I have experimented with several configurations. I find that the Fiber Stream's dual axle design follows quite sedately. I usually do not use the friction bar, [b]except when returning to the coast from the desert on the long mountain climb up the westbound Interstate 8 on a Sunday afternoon. The combination of the 40 - 50 mph cross winds and the testosterone toyboxes all passing me make me feel safer with the friction anti-sway bar installed.
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Old 01-30-2007, 01:38 PM   #33
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I guess the previous owner of my van fixed all that before I came along. The tires were oversized and the rear had bags.

My Van's Particulars
Now that's both interesting and quite relevant.

By the way, although the ad says this is the "extra long wheelbase version", there only one wheelbase... it is extended body length only. Although optional in 1993, at the end of the run they all had the long body. We know what you meant...

Quote:
The van sports American AR23 7 wide wheels and Yokohama Aegis tires
Do you happen to know the size of the tires, Benita? (I realize that it is sold now so you can't check). I can read the "Aegis LS4" in the tire photo, but not the size. Since those are 7" wide wheels, the tires look quite wide but near stock diameter. It might be nice for other Astro/Safari owners to know about a specific size which worked well.

According to Yokohama's web site, the Aegis LS4 is an all-season S-rated passenger car tire, and on that wheel width could be from 205 mm to 235 mm wide (i.e. P205/.... to P235/....), anywhere from 65 to 75 aspect ratio (e.g. P205/65, P205/70, P205/75), and fit 14" or 15" wheel diameter (probably 15").
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Old 01-30-2007, 04:02 PM   #34
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Do you happen to know the size of the tires, Benita? (I realize that it is sold now so you can't check). I can read the "Aegis LS4" in the tire photo, but not the size. Since those are 7" wide wheels, the tires look quite wide but near stock diameter. It might be nice for other Astro/Safari owners to know about a specific size which worked well.
I quoted what the seller advertised when I bought the van. All the specifics went with the van to its new owner. The tires were new when I got the van and I never had a need to replace them. The guy I bought the van from got them online from a place that specialized in custom order tires, especially Japanese tires, is all I remember. The receipt was included with the sale and subsequent transfer.
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Old 01-30-2007, 07:49 PM   #35
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Thanks for what you could tell us, Benita. Every bit of experience helps.
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