Helper springs for Astro - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV

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Old 06-11-2007, 02:47 PM   #15
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Trailer: 1993 Casita Spirit Deluxe 16 ft / 2002 GMC Safari SLT
Posts: 13
I own a 2000 Chevy Astro van. I have 420lbs. tongue weight and would like to take away some of the drop in the rear end when I hook up the camper. What is the best and most economical way to do this? I see that you can spend from $50.00 to $350.00 what are the do's and don'ts. I have already removed the 2 rear seats and that alone helped some.
Gary Little
Take a peak at (Timbren Overload Springs) The cost is reasonable and won't change ride of your van. They have them for both front and rear.

Air shocks and added leaf springs are not without their own problems and life-span issues.

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Old 06-11-2007, 05:44 PM   #16
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Name: Brian
Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
Posts: 4,999
Timbren's AEON springs work the same way as an overload leaf (the ones not in contact until some compression of the suspension has occurred). They are rubber, but I don't understand why there would be any problem with steel overload springs, since that's what the main springs are.

If someone is going to add overload springs, then I don't see any problem with the Timbrens, and if the trailer has a rubber torsion axle then there's something which seems right about the combination...

Serious fans of rubber springs need to drive an old Mini - but they're not great tugs!

1979 Boler B1700RGH, pulled by 2004 Toyota Sienna LE 2WD
Information is good. Lack of information is not so good, but misinformation is much worse. Check facts, and apply common sense liberally.
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Old 08-29-2007, 10:52 PM   #17
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Trailer: 1993 Casita Spirit Deluxe 16 ft / 2002 GMC Safari SLT
Posts: 13
I put the Timbren's on both front and rear of my Safari. I then replaced the rear shocks with Edlebrock shocks. I have yet to tow the Casita. I will install the new Edlebrock shocks on the front in the next 3 weeks or so. I plan to replace the spark plugs, wires and front shocks at the same time as the splash shields need to be removed for both procedures.

From what I've seen thus far, I highly recommend the Timbren product as it doesn't affect ride when empty.
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Old 08-29-2007, 10:55 PM   #18
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Trailer: 1993 Casita Spirit Deluxe 16 ft / 2002 GMC Safari SLT
Posts: 13
Oh, for the old Mini!

On the Astro / Safari, one can get either 2k or 6k Tinbren's. I got the 2k set for the rear. Time will tell whether I should have opted for the heavier size.
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Old 08-30-2007, 06:45 AM   #19
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Trailer: 2004 Bigfoot 17 ft ('Beastie')
Posts: 564

A tongue weight of 420# is quite a bit! I would check your rear axle rating and see how close you are to an overload situation. A WDH is an effective way to remedy this, if you are close to the limit. Front wheel drive is another good reason to tow with a WDH (I don't know about the Astro). Check the towing section of your owners manual. I'm currently towing with Air Lift bags inside the rear coil springs and that is very effective too. I went with Air Lift because they were easier to get in my area. I also have an EAZ-Lift sway control.
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Old 08-30-2007, 08:42 AM   #20
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Name: Darwin
Trailer: 2002 19 ft Scamp 19 ft 5th Wheel
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Go to (JC Whitney) and order a catalog they have catalogues for just about everything that travels on the highways. Some for just trucks / vans, campers, cars, etc.

U will find Helper Springs, Air Bag attachments, Air Adjustable shocks, etc. This will give U a wide selection to think about.

If I were going to add something, I would go with air lift bags. A DIY install and allows U 2 adjust according to the load. U can also install a small air compressor on the vehicle where U can adjust from the drivers seat and 4 a few $$ more, U can add adjust either side individually.
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Old 08-30-2007, 07:43 PM   #21
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Trailer: Scamp 13 ft
Posts: 33
I would worry about an excessive amount of tongue-weight also. I had a '99 Astro that was only rated for 3500lbs. tow capacity, so 420lbs. of tongue-weight would be too much. Also make sure you check out how the tow hitch is mounted. I went to a reputable hitch installer shortly after I purchased the van in 1999. The hitch that they installed, which was made for Chevy Astros at the time, only mounted to the sheet metal of the van's unibody construction - not the steel frame. It was a class II hitch. I didn't pay much attention to it because I didn't tow anything for several years, but in 2005 I got a 13' Scamp. After the third trip I discovered that the tow hitch was just about to rip through the sheet metal mounts. And remember, this is a small trailer that the Astro should not have had any trouble towing. I took the van to another hitch installer who was dumbfounded by the whole situation. Anyway, he welded in a few more support brackets and I never had another towing problem. Unfortunately, the oil pump went out a few months later, causing the engine to seize and leaving me stranded in Mountain Home, ID. Good Luck

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