suspension upgrades for 200 series diesel

Submitted: Friday, Mar 27, 2009 at 20:43
ThreadID: 125495 Views:6236 Replies:4 FollowUps:5
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Greetings
I am currently setting up my 200 series diesel for our next holiday towing a 16 foot BT, and as with any Landcruiser the suspension ( especially the rear ) needs a lot of help as the rear drops noticeably when we both sit on the tailgate!. (ok neither of us is a midget).
The reason for this post is to pick other members brains who have successfully set up a 200 series especially for towing and what modifications/extras they have made eg air bags, weight distribution hitch, springs etc, as I would not feel confident towing anything with the standard suspension. I am also considering changing the towing hitch from an AT35 to a Hyland hitch- any comments?.
Any advice members can give me will be appreciated as I am getting different and sometimes conflicting advice from various retailers
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Reply By: Noosa Fox - Friday, Mar 27, 2009 at 21:37

Friday, Mar 27, 2009 at 21:37
Chuck,

Can't help with 200 series, but I do have the Hyland Hitch and I am very happy with it.
The main difference between the AT-35 and the Hyland is the ease of hitching and un-hitching with the Hyland compared to the AT-35 that can be a problem if everything is not lined up properly.
They both have double swivelling so they have the same amount of coupling movement.

Brian
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Reply By: Gone Bush - Friday, Mar 27, 2009 at 22:54

Friday, Mar 27, 2009 at 22:54
Hullo Chuck

agree with you about the Hyland Hitch. I have a Hyland on my Trakmaster (soon to be sold hopefully) and BT will put one on my new van for me in September.

As far as suspension on your LC200 goes you will find a wealth of info on this site:

www.lcool.org/forum/

You have to join, but it's free.

Initially I would think of airbags, then if you think it's necessary and the budget permits, go to ARB for an Old Man Emu suspension setup. I will be looking at the 200kg rear springs and the airbags.

cheers

Stephen
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Reply By: Sundy & Cyclone - Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 01:31

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 01:31
We have air bags on the rear of our 100 series pulling an 18' B.T. and it tows straight & true, although would probably go for a spring & shock up grade when shocker replacement is needed.

Tony
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Follow Up By: Sundy & Cyclone - Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 01:33

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 01:33
Keeping the airbags in service of course !!!!!!!
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Follow Up By: Willie - Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 19:45

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 19:45
I have a 100 , not a 200, sorry.

BUT, I have a 16' BT and I have rear airbags and a Heavy Duty suspension from ARB. I am very happy with this set-up and have not found I needed a weight distribution hitch.

Willie
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Follow Up By: Sundy & Cyclone - Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 21:17

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 21:17
Willie, we are the same in so much as we have never had a weight dist. hitch on our B.T. nor felt the need for it either.

Tony
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Reply By: Yogi and Muffin - Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 01:44

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 01:44
After considerable research we opted to fit the ARB 400 Kg suspension upgrade. My feeling was that the 200 kg would not be sufficient to correct the drooping rear suspension. This is the same system as we had on our old 100 series and we were very haappy with it.
As a side benefit it is a reasonably easy procedure (at least in Victoria) to get an engineers certificate and have the GVM upgraded to 3580 kg. This makes it much more likely that you will stay legal with a load aboard plus bull bar etc. plus about 300Kg. ball weight. Our 20 ft BT has a tare of 2750 so this is a definite consideration.

We picked up our new BT in February and it towed beautifully behind the 200 series. The drop in suspension after attaching a BT of this size with standard suspension has been measured at 95 - 100 mm. Our drop with the ARB suspension was 38 mm. (enough said).

The ride in the unladen vehicle is definitely firmer but not at all unpleasant and I prefer it to standard as it does not lean as much in the corners and the vehicle feels more in control.
Overall we are very happy with this suspension upgrade and of course the shockers are of a much higher calibre and will withstand prolonged corrugations much better.
Regards,
Tony
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Follow Up By: Gone Bush - Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 02:05

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 02:05
Interesting Tony,

Do you think you would have achieved the same result with 200kg springs and airbags? That is, reducing the amount the tail drops, not the carrying capacity.

By the way, the fine print on the ARB GVM upgrade says it only applies to tyres with exactly the same specs as the original Dunlops. At the moment there aren't any available in any other brand, so if you change tyres you void the GVM upgrade.

My approach will be to put the hardware on that qualifies for a GVM upgrade but not bother with the expense of paying for a new plate.

cheers
Stephen
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Follow Up By: Yogi and Muffin - Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 02:13

Saturday, Mar 28, 2009 at 02:13
Hard to say Stephen, I felt that the stronger springs were a better way to go and not have to worry about airbags abrading etc. and the firmer ride was not a problem for me. However the airbags may be sufficient. One thing for certain is that the standard suspension is not.
The cost of the GVM upgrade was $200 which I did not think was too bad. This gave me an engineers certificate, a new rego sticker with the revised GVM shown and a plastic sticky label affixed to the inside door pillar with the new GVM and the engineers registered number.
Regards,

Tony
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