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Old 02-04-2014, 06:30 PM   #1
Themajickman
 
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Default Brutal ride

I just purchased a 2007 Dodge sprinter 2500 passenger van and had it modified with a lift and tiedowns that serves as my handicap vehicle. I ride in the back in my wheelchair and I realized after my first ride that it was totally brutal on my body and kidneys especially. I would like any suggestions on how to soften the ride. It's my understanding that airbag suspension runs about $8000 which is completely out of the question. Also, since my van was "born" as a passenger van rather than a cargo van it already has the softest Springs available so, new Springs would not be helpful. My next area would be maybe tires. Does anybody have any suggestions about different tire sizes, etc. etc.?



The ride is so rough that I would sell the darn thing if I can't fix it
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Old 02-04-2014, 06:45 PM   #2
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Default Re: Brutal ride

What are your current tires, and the tire pressures front & rear?

Do you know if the the van had any spring modifications done to stiffen?
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Old 02-04-2014, 07:55 PM   #3
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Default Re: Brutal ride

do passenger and cargo van's have different springs?

check the air pressure. Tires make a difference-there is a chance that getting a new set of Michelin's (my choice) would help.
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Old 02-04-2014, 08:43 PM   #4
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Default Re: Brutal ride

Yeah, give us some air pressure numbers to work with.

Where exactly do you ride in the back?

How much does the lift equipment weigh? Or what the total amount of weight the van is carrying when it's beating you up?

Can you describe the nature of the roughness? Give some examples?
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Old 02-04-2014, 08:46 PM   #5
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Default Re: Brutal ride

The farther forward you can move the smoother the ride
You could also ADD WEIGHT TO THE BACK TO DAMPEN THE"JUMP".
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:23 PM   #6
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Default Re: Brutal ride

I can tell you that riding behind the rear axle is always the worst ride, the bumps are amplified back there. Your ride will improve by positioning the chair forward of the rear axle.
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:27 PM   #7
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Default Re: Brutal ride

Quote:
Originally Posted by OrioN View Post
What are your current tires, and the tire pressures front & rear?

Do you know if the the van had any spring modifications done to stiffen?
My current tires are Michelin LTX M/S 245 x 75 x 16. And they have about 80% tread left
no modifications have been made to the Springs to my knowledge
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:30 PM   #8
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Default Re: Brutal ride

Quote:
Originally Posted by 72chevy4x4 View Post
do passenger and cargo van's have different springs?

check the air pressure. Tires make a difference-there is a chance that getting a new set of Michelin's (my choice) would help.
according to this company I spoke with apparently cargo vans and passenger van do have different springs. And, I do have a set of new Michelin's. Air pressures were said about 65 pounds. I'm thinking of trying to lower the air pressure and see if that will help
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Old 02-04-2014, 09:46 PM   #9
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Default Re: Brutal ride

Quote:
Originally Posted by ctmcdaniel View Post
Yeah, give us some air pressure numbers to work with.

Where exactly do you ride in the back?

How much does the lift equipment weigh? Or what the total amount of weight the van is carrying when it's beating you up?

Can you describe the nature of the roughness? Give some examples?
as soon as I get back home I can work with some air pressure changes to see if the ride improves without adversely heating up the tires.
I ride a little bit in front of the rear axle offset a little to the left of center line. We leave in the rear set of three seats so I ride in front of them.
Me, my chair and the equipment weigh 750 pounds (approximately).
The roughness is like riding on a solid tire and no suspension.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mrdi View Post
The farther forward you can move the smoother the ride
You could also ADD WEIGHT TO THE BACK TO DAMPEN THE"JUMP".
I really don't have a option as to where I can sit because the tiedowns are fixed in the floor. As it is there is barely room to squeeze between my feet and the front seats so I really can't move much more forward.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CJPJ View Post
I can tell you that riding behind the rear axle is always the worst ride, the bumps are amplified back there. Your ride will improve by positioning the chair forward of the rear axle.
Thanks, but I'm riding in front of the rear axle.

I think my best bet is to try different air pressures once I get out of the hospital and see how that works..
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Old 02-04-2014, 10:00 PM   #10
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Default Re: Brutal ride

FWIW,

Man that just sucks.... We gotta get you a gentler ride.

I'd set the tires to the pressures shown on the driver door placard. No need to go higher... That's the recommended pressure for the rated load.

I'm assuming you are seated either over or behind the rear axle....???? That's not the smoothest ride in any vehicle. Really bad on one with heavy springs and shocks.

Can you move farther forward? Possibly midship between, or nearly so, the two axles. With the Sprinter's flat floor you should be able to get farther forward... Oops! Do you have a second row seat?

That would be my start points.

My RV on a 2500 chassis rode pretty well except for the sofa about 20" from the rear doors. It was kind of bouncy depending on road surfaces. Much smoother between the wheels! Honestly... I don't think changing springs, air bags, shocks will make a whole lot of difference in the ride over or behind the rear axle.
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