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Raul

Adventurer
As a user of the Kit and having suffered the DW issue I can sympathize. Mine is a 5.4 so significantly lighter. I've been DW free for a while. I never had it when braking, only going over bumps or pronounced road ondulations.

SInce the radius arms brackets fall right on the tie point for the transmission crossmember on m van. I modified that cross and it bolts to the brackets themselves. Not exactly triangulation, but I am sure it provides some reinforcement.

I recycled the old drag link and an original van suspension brackets to provide some extra rigidity to the track bar mount. I do agree that the van frame was never intended to hold this kind of efforts.

Here is a picture I already posted on my build thread.

IMG_3195.JPGe.jpg

I never wanted to add an steering stabilizer until I feel the issue was minimized. I still do not have any stabilizer and so far so good. I recently changed wheels to 305/65r18 with 4.5 back spacing and it seems that it still working fine.

Regarding your frame being old or abused. My van was a shuttle for the drilling rigs in South Texas. It was filthy, the shock absorbers were destroyed, I had to re-weld the window guides inside the door as they broke due to the vibration... I do not think your van being a Hotel Shuttle had a harder life unless it was involved in some sort of accident that un-squared the frame.

Hope this helps
 

another_mike

Adventurer
As a user of the Kit and having suffered the DW issue I can sympathize. Mine is a 5.4 so significantly lighter. I've been DW free for a while. I never had it when braking, only going over bumps or pronounced road ondulations.

SInce the radius arms brackets fall right on the tie point for the transmission crossmember on m van. I modified that cross and it bolts to the brackets themselves. Not exactly triangulation, but I am sure it provides some reinforcement.

I recycled the old drag link and an original van suspension brackets to provide some extra rigidity to the track bar mount. I do agree that the van frame was never intended to hold this kind of efforts.

Here is a picture I already posted on my build thread.

View attachment 480581

I never wanted to add an steering stabilizer until I feel the issue was minimized. I still do not have any stabilizer and so far so good. I recently changed wheels to 305/65r18 with 4.5 back spacing and it seems that it still working fine.

Regarding your frame being old or abused. My van was a shuttle for the drilling rigs in South Texas. It was filthy, the shock absorbers were destroyed, I had to re-weld the window guides inside the door as they broke due to the vibration... I do not think your van being a Hotel Shuttle had a harder life unless it was involved in some sort of accident that un-squared the frame.

Hope this helps
I dont understand... you said you modified where the radius arms attach to the frame but what you have in the picture is no where near where the radius arms attach...
 

Raul

Adventurer
I dont understand... you said you modified where the radius arms attach to the frame but what you have in the picture is no where near where the radius arms attach...

Sorry, two different things. One is the transmission crossmember connecting the radius arm brackets. The other is the drag link reinforcing the track bar bracket (pictured above) .

This is how it looks like today. As is, it is quite crude. Eventually I'll replace it with something more elaborated with gussets and better bracketing.


IMG_4376re.jpg
 
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Bikersmurf

Expedition Leader
Although asking more of the frame than originally, the frames are quite tough. I’m sure my Ambulance, as with others, has been run hard and long... the frame shows no signs of wear and tear. It was roughed up enough to cause the body cross member that supports the radiator
crack all the way through on both sides. BTW... watch for cracks.
 

wanderer-rrorc

Explorer
We are chasing a DW on a friends grand Cherokee after lifting it.

After a year of changing bushings and ball joints, tie rods,wheel bearings...some things helped..some didnt..and it was narrowed down to only being induced during braking.

Eventually he changes his brakes..caliper had been hanging up. So new calipers and rotors..now it has no braking induced DW!!

Just some food for thought.

I had DW on my old explorer after a solid axle swap...turned out to be the fiber coupling on my steering shaft from the sterring wheel to the steering box.


Hoping something helps!

Sent from my VS987 using Tapatalk
 

bknudtsen

Expedition Leader
I have been wondering why this thread went quiet for so long. Did you get the issues fixed and move on? Did you say "****** it" and sell the van? Were you still waiting on parts? Were you unwilling to admit that you unfairly threw MG to the wolves? Something else? I have to admit it... When you started this thread, I was stoked. I don't know you, but I have followed the remodel of your home on Garage Journal in years past. Your attention to detail, artistic eye, and talent to tell a story had me at word "go." Why? Well, because I consider MG to be one of my closest friends. I was excited to see how you would document the build, both through this thread and through photographs. But, before I go on, a little history, and disclosure...

MG and I met through this forum. Back in the day, Chris was intimately involved in the daily activities of this forum. Chris provided me with enormous support that resulted in the most viewed, non sticky, thread in the 4wd Camper Vans sub forum. (Over 600,000 views of my original VANdiana Jones thread, and I still field monthly PM's from prospective 4wd van converts.) MG drove up from Portland with his QuadVan conversion, and we hung out talking vans. He provided genuine praise over Chris' UJOR conversion. No ego. Just a love for wrenching. (As an aside, I am a 20 year Cop. I do not trust very many people outside of my profession. People of questionable character have no place in my world.) Again, full disclosure, MG is one of my most cherished friends.

When I learned of your troubles, I truly wanted to help you resolve the issue. MG and I are in contact on a regular basis. For the most part, I already know what's going on before it hits social media. I knew that you were having problems with your van, but when you posted the video of your death wobble, I was admittedly, shocked. Clearly, your van had some issues. But, then it happened; the trolls came out. I get it that everyone has their point of view, but man did you hang my friend out to dry. I know MG. I have broken bread with his family. I have seen his work ethic. I am privy to his concerns and frustrations. I can honestly say, with all my heart... Gregor, he did not deserve the public shaming that followed. People started jumping to conclusions. Chris took the opportunity to air his private dealings with MG, and he offered "the solution" to your problems.

You installed UJOR's fix. It didn't work. You went to a respected 3rd party builder who stated that he liked MG's design. You reverted to MG's conversion. You added additional steering stabilizers, as MG suggested (and offered to pay for), and you gave him credit for that suggestion. Please, tell me... why you are still acting like he screwed you over? I am not one to start drama on the Interwebs; in fact i hate it. Go re-read your update. The only thing it is missing is an apology to MG. I can absolutely guarantee, that if you followed his suggestions from the start, you would still have a spot in his, or Josh's, garage. We all tried to offer help. Instead, everyone who had anything to do with MG got labeled as "fanboys." Seriously?!?! I have the most successful UJOR build thread, EVER! I have never publicly said a negative thing about UJOR or Chris, yet suddenly, those of us associated with MG are fanboys? Josh and Jeremy (VANdiana's 2nd owner) had never said anything negative about UJOR, but when they try to defend their friend, BOOM! Blown up on the forums. And... through all that, MG never disparaged anyone. At my insistence, he posted his side of the story. But, as a result MG, has never resumed the same presence on this forum. It's a major loss for the general membership.

Gregor, I am genuinely sorry that you are having problems with your van. Despite having never met you, I have seen you remodel the majority of your house. Small world eh? When I joined this forum, it was all about helping each other out. Chris was invaluable during my build. I paid him back by documenting my efforts and steering folks his way. MG and I met over the common interest of 4wd vans. That developed into a close friendship. We need to get back to that.

All I ask is this... do what you do. Tell a good story, build some stuff and take amazing pictures. Leave the blame and finger pointing behind. MG is a good man. I believe that he did everything he could have reasonably done for you. I have converted a van to 4wd. It is difficult to do it correctly. The cost? A lot of money, sweat, blood, and sometimes frustration or disappointment.

Best of luck,

Brad
 

Farfrumwork

Well-known member
I am not one to start drama on the Interwebs; in fact i hate it.

Really?

And it seems like there is no 'fix' yet, neither MG nor UJOR solutions have fully worked for this van.



Good luck to ALL who are venturing down the road less traveled.
 
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bknudtsen

Expedition Leader
Really?

And it seems like there is no 'fix' yet, neither MG nor UJOR solutions have fully worked for this van.



Good luck to ALL who are venturing down the road less traveled.

Yes. Really. The statement that you quoted was an admission by me that I am deviating from that norm. Look through my history here. I pride myself on being helpful. In this case, I had to say something in defense of my friend.

This drama was started long before my post. I tried to cool it down at the very start and got steam rolled. I truly want Gregor to find a fix.
 
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ujoint

Supporting Sponsor
I'll add a few cents since I'm involved.

I Apologize again that I missed the email after the parts were installed, it was to my personal acct that gets bombarded with junk, not to chris@ujointoffroad.com so thats how/why it wasn't received. I pride myself on answering emails as quick as possible but some fall thru the cracks from time to time. I don't answer VMs (don't think you left one?) and didn't receive any other communication. Reached out a few weeks after the parts arrived to ck in as you stated, sorry that I missed so much!

Not that it matters now but I have to disagree with the local guy, I've yet to meet anyone in the offroad community that thinks more steering angle is better than a nice flat trac bar/drag link. Its clear now that something else was at fault (radius arm bushings?) and I wish the x-over was still on it, I do feel its a massive improvement and lets the front suspension move more freely. Feel free to send the x-over parts back if you want for a partial refund. We've shipped 6 or 7 coil kit fixes and every one of them has been happy with the improved steering and handling.
 

ogre

Member
I have followed this thread for a while now.
I just purchased my wife a van, and am looking to get one for myself.

I want to convert mine to 4wd and have been looking into both ujoint’s leaf kit and into the mg/ujoint coil kit.

Looking through this and reading everything, you are quick to throw people and company’s under the bus. As I read this and follow the response both companies have bent over backwards to try and help you.

MG continued to try till he was out of suggestions. And you no longer wanted his advice. He also admitted to you that it was beyond his ability to fix it. You have now done what he advised.

Chris admitted to missing your email, however, it doesn’t sound like you tried very hard to get ahold of him.

I have a mechanical background and I know the frustration when my friends want me to fix their vehicles over the phone, or through text/email. Without your hands on things it’s hard to figure out just what is happening.

It saddens me to see good companies get trash talked like this.

I will say from my experience with jeeps and full-size fords that some times the fix is the simple thing that you don’t want to admit was the problem. Steering stabilizers have fixed a few of my vehicles. Big tires, larger wider wheels affect your steering a lot and bumps are made worse because of the increased mass at the wheel ends.

I recommend a quality steering stabilizer to everyone I know who puts larger tires on their vehicles. If anything it helps lengthen the steering components life, and helps lessen driver fatigue.

I hope you find a solution that meets your high expectations.

Thank you for allowing us to follow your journey. Your information has been invaluable to me and moving forward with purchasing my van.




Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

ruffryder

New member
If a 1/2" pin can hold a 12,000lb trailer (in shear)
Just a clarification that the 1/2" pin is not holding the full 12,000lb of the trailer. The pin is only over coming the resistance of the trailer (static and dynamic) to make it move. I would agree with your statement if you could hang the trailer in the air with the 1/2" pin. Nothing major added to the discussion, but thought it would be good to clarify some statics discussions.
 
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ogre

Member
My work truck has a 13,500lbs steerable lift axle.

There is no physical input from the truck to the axle it is self steering.

The only thing that keeps the axle under control is two pressurized stabilizer shocks.

There is no track bar on this axle, it has trailing arms only.

I have experienced death wobble with this axle when the shocks go bad.
Keep good shocks on it and there is no death wobble at all.

Steering stabilizers are wonderful at controlling the dw and part of factory design on heavy trucks in many applications.

662f4048a249705134967ef46f7101a9.jpg

aebaf9874daac059cc045bbeb520feaf.jpg

ce03f61093f1068649307b96a4ee581b.jpg
4f218d83708110b4c5b48e00b35c72e8.jpg



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

torqluvas

Observer
Updates? A ton. Progress, meh.

And it's for those exact reasons I've been reticent to post an update. Nonetheless let's dive in.

The big issue I've had since day one is an acute death wobble. For a year I've been replacing parts to the point that every part of my front end has been replaced at least once and none of it has solved the issue. At the same time my good friend and neighbor Taylor mentioned he was also having a similar issue with his MG converted V10 van and after going for a drive on the same roads it was obvious that our issues were identical but mine were simply more pronounced. Bumps or braking from 55-45mph would set the front end into a mono-beam axle shimmy - the technical term for death wobble.

When MG gave up I reached out to Chris who was addressing the issue with an update to the coil setup and was very confident that his update would solve the DW. I know Chris really tests and uses his vans so I was very hopeful. Both Taylor and I ordered kits for $1500 and I found a local shop that had done some conversions and I brought them my van to do the swap.

This is my van with the U-Joint coil update:

It was a fairly simple swap but beyond what I can do in terms of space and size. Art, the mechanic, got the kit installed and called me to say that it didn't fix the issue. I was absolutely crushed and headed out to test the van myself to see what it was like. The ride was about the same, the turning radius was a bit reduced and the wobble was absolutely... the same.

I emailed Chris but he didn't respond. Not out of callousness but I guess he missed my email. At this point Taylor and I commiserated that if the two major builders of these vans can't fix our issue what the **** do we do? I did the only thing I could think of and that was - to call my refrigerator repair man.

Actually I was calling him about our oven and he heard the frustration in my voice and asked what else was going on. Appliance repairman are much like therapists. We've known each other for a few years and I know he's built some cars and bikes and so I told him the whole story. He was pretty familiar with the situation and immediately told me that he knew who I should call - Leonard of Leonards Offroad - who was a personal friend.

Leonard was one of the foremost 4x4 builders in the country before he retired (that's Leonards personal tube framed crawler on the right) running a small shop that billed out several million a year working on and building pretty outrageous 4x4's and was named one of the best shops in the country by several magazines. He said I should come by his house so he could take a look. For a comparison Taylor brought his van with MG's kit and mine with the U-Joint conversion.

After measuring the hub angles, checking caster, radius arm angle and feeling and testing for any play in the many joints of the steering Leonard offered that he liked the original MG conversion. The U-joint conversion might make more sense on an off road rig but he wasn't a fan of the drag link not being centered on the axle line. He suggested going back to the MG kit.

Youre friends with the V10 van did he get his dw solved? Did he install the ujor front end kit?

WHats the latest with your van. Are you running one of those redhead power steering boxes? Seems like many on here have been upgrading to them. Tires and rims balanced? Look forward to hearing the solution whatever it is.
 

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