Our Dandy Five desperately needs new suspension. The wheels are almost touching the arches when stationary!
I've read various threads on here with people upgrading to 750kg units and I wondered whether this might be a good idea. What I wondered though is does this put the chassis under more stress, since presumably being underweight for a given suspension rating would give a stiffer ride (less shock absorbtion)? Hopefully there are a few people reading this who have taken either route and can give me an idea of the pros and cons.
The other, related (at least in terms of how and when to fix it), problem we have is that the chassis has sagged away from the support points of the suspension and the A-frame, giving the floor a definite hump, and making the lowest sliding doors of the kitchen unit very stiff. The hump is most pronounced from the middle to the back of the trailer, which I think makes sense as this is the largest unsupported section, and very slight from side to side. Actually I think it's only the front the has the side to side bend. I'm fairly sure this has happened as a result of the knackered suspension (It was this low when we bought it, and for who knows how long before that) transferring every shock of the road directly to the trailer, but I suppose it's also possible that someone hit a speed bump too fast. My proposed fix for this is to mount the new suspension via full trailer length beams of box section, stiffening and hopefully straightening the chassis, and bringing us up to modern towing height at the same time. I would work out the details with whoever I got to do the work, as I realise the new beams might want tying in with the a-frame which would make it more involved. As an idea though, does it sound workable?
The reason I mention this in the same post as asking which suspension to use is this: We are about to move back up to Scotland. Once there this is just the sort of job that my Dad is good at, whereas down here it could quickly get expensive! If upgrading to the higher rated suspension doesn't sound like that big an advantage I would probably have new suspension of the original rating fitted before driving up and then get dad to help with the other work over the winter. If we were upgrading to 750kg then I understand that some welding is required anyway (as the mounting plates don't match) in which case I would probably swallow the expense and get the whole lot done at once.
This is a fully insulated five with underfloor heating and not much rust, in good condition apart from this, and which we got for a good price. That's why I'm willing to perservere with what might be fairly severe structural problems, the rest is in good nick.
Any advice anyone can give will be much appreciated.