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Old 08-24-2019, 07:09 PM   #1
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Metal on metal sound from rear suspension

Before we started our current trip I noticed an odd but not particularly loud metal on metal rubbing sound from the rear suspension of our Minnie Winnie 27Q. Crawled around the underside but could see anything unusual. While outside the rig conducting some driver training for the DW I could hear the sound a bit louder, but still not something I considered threatening or unsafe.

Today I was under the coach looking at something else when I noticed the link from the right end of the sway bar to the frame was slightly bent which caused slight contact with the right leaf spring.

No discernable wear is visible, but I was wondering if anyone else had that happen?
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Old 08-24-2019, 09:57 PM   #2
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I would assume if a link is bent it would most likely be be from road debris hit or something like that?

Good excuse to upgrade to a heavy duty aftermarket bar and hardware. I know I would be looking for a good deal on one if I had any reason at all. The factory bars and bushings are a bit overworked and undersized on most RV’s

Hope it all works out for the better.
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Old 08-30-2019, 05:20 PM   #3
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I bought a replacement link today from a Ford dealer and will probably work on replacing it tomorrow. Has anyone out there done this before?

I'm a pretty good shade tree mechanic, but this is one repair I've never had to make before. The only thing I'm not sure about will a jack be needed to gradually release tension on the sway bar while disconnecting the kink? Or will I need a jack to raise the sway bar to the link for re-assembly? Or will a jack be needed for both?
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Old 08-30-2019, 05:31 PM   #4
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For the Ford F53 Chassis there is the CHF (Cheap Handling Fix). It is adjusting the end links. I did it in my driveway and did have a jack to move the bar up into place to put things back together. If you're on pretty level ground there should not be much tension on the sway bar so it may be easier than you're thinking. (trying to say - Yes to the jack and believe you will run into minimal tension if you're level)
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Old 08-30-2019, 06:12 PM   #5
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Thanks, Thom!!! Unfortunately there is no adjustability in the E450 sway bar - at least mine. Kind of wish there was but then I'm not really having any significant controllability issues anyway.
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Old 08-30-2019, 06:18 PM   #6
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Are you battening down the hatches or are you out on the road?
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Old 08-30-2019, 06:37 PM   #7
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Are you battening down the hatches or are you out on the road?
We’ve been traveling for 2+ years. We’ll be in SoCal tomorrow so well away from the weather.
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Old 08-30-2019, 06:59 PM   #8
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Good for you! We're in Indiana right now but will be heading back to Alaska in about a week and a half.
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Old 08-31-2019, 05:59 AM   #9
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Good for you! We're in Indiana right now but will be heading back to Alaska in about a week and a half.

Just to let you know there was snow in Fort Nelson a few weeks ago and numerous forest fires in AK.
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Old 08-31-2019, 08:43 AM   #10
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Thanks Sue. Hope it was just an early puff of snow and the worst will hold off for another couple weeks! The wildfires have been burning in Alaska all summer. Parts of the state, even Anchorage, are in extreme drought condition.

Thanks again for the heads up, Sue.
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Old 08-31-2019, 08:45 AM   #11
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We heard it was 8". Aren't you heading in the wrong direction?
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Old 08-31-2019, 09:00 AM   #12
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Nope. Alaska is home.
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Old 09-01-2019, 12:54 PM   #13
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Replaced that bad sway bar link today. The old one was bent enough to effectively shorten it length by about an inch! Even the upper mounting bolt had a slight bend in it. BTW the other link was in good shape.

Interestingly the threaded lower ends of both old links were broken off immediately below the nut. My first thought was that a previous driver might have gone off-roading and knocked off the protrusions by hitting rocks. But as I looked at the other machinery in the area those rod ends were not the lowest objects. Even the rear axel was lower. The new link had about 1 1/4" of threads on the lower end which left an inch of exposed threads after the nut was installed.

Anyway, I'm not sure what might have caused that link to bend in the first place. Maybe we hit another bump with the right dually as the coach was already in a right lurch from a previous bump or dip? The Alaska Highway as well as other roads in Alaska do have some pretty wicked frost heaves.
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