Sprinter broken rear spring AGAIN

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Post by R1GURU on Wed Feb 21, 2018 5:48 pm

Jaytee wrote:Totally agree Crosgor, exactly what I said to the Merc garage. And yes, had to cancel a trip away this weekend. I do not believe I should be paying to modify a vehicle that clearly isn't fit for purpose though, something the supplier should be doing prior to sale.
Waiting to hear from Merc 'again'. 
In the meantime I have been speaking to a company called Midland Road Springs who manufacture a two leaf spring, first leaf to 3500 gross weight and second spring takes it up to approx 4700. He says it won't make it a harsher ride and if anything better than the single hard spring. About £300 for the pair so if Merc expect me to pay for the replacement of the broken I may go down this alternative route. And or price up a C39 dual rate spring. Just need to watch ride height though.
THATS THE COMPANY I USED . they even supplied all fittings . and my van was perfect afterwards
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Post by Jaytee on Wed Feb 21, 2018 6:37 pm

Good recommendation R1GURU thanks allthumbz. If Merc don't come up trumps that is the way I will go.

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Post by big'nuf on Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:37 pm

Boy am I glad I got rid of my Stanton and went back to Peugeot?...
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Post by Libraryman2 on Wed Feb 21, 2018 9:45 pm

big'nuf wrote:Boy am I glad I got rid of my Stanton and went back to Peugeot?...

Lol...I’m a Peugeot owner and whilst I consider mine a good one, non of them are perfect..it’s bleeding frustrating when you paid out a lorra dosh..

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Post by PLOUGHLIN on Wed Feb 21, 2018 11:25 pm

MB description of XL8 Option.

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Post by Jaytee on Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:11 pm

Well, Merc as expected not interested, not going to look into the 'fit for purpose' issue and wanted £680 plus fitting for the same springs. Midland Road springs recommend 4500 tonne vehicle rating dual spring and £280 inc delivery. Local garage will fit so no contest, springs ordered.
Had a longish chat with Midland and they reckon these springs will possibly raise back by an inch (not an issue) and feel certain they will improve the harsh ride especially as we are normally over 3.5 tonne as a minimum. (Ours is 3880 max).


Last edited by Jaytee on Fri Feb 23, 2018 12:17 pm; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : Spelling)

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Post by Liam on Fri Feb 23, 2018 2:45 pm

Jaytee wrote:Well, Merc as expected not interested, not going to look into the 'fit for purpose' issue and wanted £680 plus fitting for the same springs. Midland Road springs recommend 4500 tonne vehicle rating dual spring and £280 inc delivery. Local garage will fit so no contest, springs ordered.
Had a longish chat with Midland and they reckon these springs will possibly raise back by an inch (not an issue) and feel certain they will improve the harsh ride especially as we are normally over 3.5 tonne as a minimum. (Ours is 3880 max).
John, 
Can't say I am surprised by the MB Stuttgart response - they probably get this sort of issue raise every day by "white van man" who thrash their vehicles to the limit in every respect so why would they differentiate their approach for the few motorhome owner's who treat and use their vehicles well within the limits! 
In any event even if they did show some interest they would probably defer the issue to AS in the end as the modifier of their chassis and we all know where one would get to on that!! And as you say the "fit for purpose" route would most likely be another waste of time and money. 
I think you are right to follow the self fix route and it sound as if you have an excellent supplier who knows what they are talking about. And on cost terms alone its a no brainer!
I seem to recall that your "bump stops" were always near to their bottoming position whereas mine appear to have been slightly higher so perhaps the extra inch will be fine.
I look forward hearing how it goes and hope you are please with the final results.
Cheers,

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Post by Beagle on Fri Feb 23, 2018 2:56 pm

Meanwhile that's me got the Beckford back, with two new springs that I'm told comply with that uprated XL8 spec.  Look to be just singles, though.  Depressingly, they're the same as the ones that broke.  

So I've another year of MB warranty now.  If it happens again it will no doubt be in 13 months.  But meanwhile I'll try and stop traveling with full water/ two bikes etc.
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Post by Liam on Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:16 pm

Beagle wrote:Meanwhile that's me got the Beckford back, with two new springs that I'm told comply with that uprated XL8 spec.  Look to be just singles, though.  Depressingly, they're the same as the ones that broke.  

So I've another year of MB warranty now.  If it happens again it will no doubt be in 13 months.  But meanwhile I'll try and stop traveling with full water/ two bikes etc.
Yes, I believe that is the same single spring that we all have.
As a precaution to another spring incident occurring have you considered having a semi air system fitted? 
I realise that it would obviously be at your own expense but at least you would be confident in carrying a normal load, i.e. water, bikes, etc. and not having to worry.
I had the "Drive Rite" heavy duty one (fitted by GlideRite) and it does improve the ride (less harsh) as well as assisting the springs in bearing the axle load. It was fitted in Nov 15 (cost circa £1000 but have peace of mind) and so far so good.

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Post by Jaytee on Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:37 pm

Beagle, don't go avoiding what you want to do with the van because of a possible design problem. 'Use it' how you want. Go find some potholes (won't be hard) and hope they break again within warranty or hope they don't break at all allthumbz
I really don't see why we have to pay out more money on a very expensive upmarket MH because of a design floor.
Worst case scenario new springs at your expense which will hopefully finally sort the issue for about £280 and a couple of hours labour to fit. (I would change mine myself but getting a bit mature for the heavy crawling underneath engineering hugegrins), easy job though.
Will report how my new springs work, hopefully end of next week.

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Post by Jonesie on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:02 pm

Hi Jaytee,
Very interested in your post regarding the rear springs - I’ve got a 2014 Winchcombe, and although I haven’t experienced a broken spring yet, the ride is way too hard at the rear even with Air Suspension. It has no tolerance of any road surface that’s not like a billiard table.
Please let me know how the twin leaf spring mod goes. Regards, Jonesie
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Post by Jaytee on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:14 pm

Hi Jonesie, the springs are sat by my back door and I'm booked in at local garage Tuesday. Would do myself but don't fancy lying under the 2 tonne rear end with it balanced on trolley jacks, axle stands and blocks so_sad 
Will report back, hopefully positively up!

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Post by Jonesie on Sat Mar 03, 2018 2:22 pm

Can’t believe the problems with the springs - unusual for a German vehicle. ( I only buy German cars )
Last time out in mine, I had a 5l container of water in the wardrobe, went over a speed bump, water container bounced and went through the bottom of the wardrobe. Luckily, I was at the AS factory last Monday and scrounged a new wardrobe floor !
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Post by Jaytee on Tue Mar 06, 2018 7:25 pm

Update time drinksallround. Had the aftermarket springs fitted today and well chuffed. They have raised the back a bit more than I had hoped but garage say the new springs will settle and I am lighter than I would ever normally be. Truck not me Whistle1 .  However I can certainly live with a slightly higher back end as the ride is absolutely transformed and much much smoother. Still firm but has lost that awful crashing and banging. Will go out for the day tomorrow with a slightly more normal weight and report further allthumbz.
Out of interest when I was moaning that after spending so much money people are having to spend more on such as air assist to try and improve the ride the chap at the garage said he had removed air assist from a whole fleet of lwb sprinter vans. Reason: cracked chassis. He says the air assist puts strain on the chassis between the spring hangars and the revised load path had caused more than one chassis to crack just in front of the rear hangar. The drivers noticed the doors wouldn't close Whistle1.

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Post by Liam on Tue Mar 06, 2018 8:31 pm

Jaytee wrote:Update time drinksallround. Had the aftermarket springs fitted today and well chuffed. They have raised the back a bit more than I had hoped but garage say the new springs will settle and I am lighter than I would ever normally be. Truck not me Whistle1 .  However I can certainly live with a slightly higher back end as the ride is absolutely transformed and much much smoother. Still firm but has lost that awful crashing and banging. Will go out for the day tomorrow with a slightly more normal weight and report further allthumbz.
Out of interest when I was moaning that after spending so much money people are having to spend more on such as air assist to try and improve the ride the chap at the garage said he had removed air assist from a whole fleet of lwb sprinter vans. Reason: cracked chassis. He says the air assist puts strain on the chassis between the spring hangars and the revised load path had caused more than one chassis to crack just in front of the rear hangar. The drivers noticed the doors wouldn't close Whistle1.
That's really good news John, lets hope that under normal loading it continues to improve.

Regarding the reported cracked chassis caused by "air assist" - it is perfectly true that if air bags alone are fitted (some kits are sold as such) then, as it was explained to me, it will put a twisting/torsion strain into the chassis and likely result is a cracked chassis. The only way round that is to have a pair of "cross chassis supports member" either side of the Air Bags in order to provide the necessary support and stop the twisting motion. That is one of the reasons MB will not endorse most of the after market air bag kits being sold as suitable for the Sprinter.

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Post by Bernie Wisely on Thu Mar 08, 2018 6:23 pm

Hi I have a 2012 Gloucester and the left hand spring snapped (with an almighty bang when I was entering the van (I weigh 11 stone)) late at night It wasn't particularly cold and we were parked on a school playground.

I have had both springs replaced with double leafed springs taking the load capacity up to 4.7Kg by Midland Road Springs at Coleshill it took about two hours and the price was very reasonable.

The van had been up rated by the previous owner to 4 tonne and the log book changed accordingly, It was fitted with a very thick single spring but which one I'm not sure but I believe they were either the C38 or C39. I have pictures but not sure how to upload them.

The van is raised at the rear by a couple of inches which will settle after a while, the ride appears much better and I would recommend this firm to anyone who needs this work, a professional small team who are a credit to the industry.
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Post by Jaytee on Thu Mar 08, 2018 7:22 pm

Good result allthumbz.  It was Midland Road Springs who supplied mine and I think same as yours Bernie. The back has risen about 3" on the body but after  my first test run yesterday I am chuffed to bits. The ride is still firm but the harshness has reduced by at least 50% and so much more comfortable. Spoke about 'the lift' to Midland and they said the will settle but try it for a month and if not happy they will swap them. Really comforting to get such good service and support.
I have a feeling they could do quite well out of Autosleeper owners hugegrins

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Post by groundhog on Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:08 pm

I am mystified!

Our Worcester is certainly not harsh, doesn't crash and bang around and if anything is soft on the rear end, must have a look tomorrow and see if we have different springs or something?

So sorry for all those that are suffering the problem but good to know there is a relatively cheap solution!
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Post by Jonesie on Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:55 pm

Hi Groundhog,
I’m following this post with great interest - mine is the most hardest ride I’ve ever had in a Motorhome.
Luckily, Midland Spring aren’t far from me, so if all goes well for Jaytee, I’ll be doing the same.
Hope all’s well in sunny Cornwall. Regards, Jonesie.
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Post by groundhog on Fri Mar 09, 2018 11:36 am

Raining hard today so only a quick look underneath, we have a single spring I guess the same as those that have broken. Rather concerning, the van is in for an MOT next week so will be getting MB to have a really good look for any damage or signs of cracks. Up to now though over 20,000 miles and no probs at all.
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Post by Jonesie on Fri Mar 09, 2018 1:19 pm

If yours is a softer ride, maybe the chassis was modified or uprated for the 2014 models.
Good luck with your MOT, My project for this weekend is a new wardrobe floor to fix in position, after my mishap last week.
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Post by Peter Brown on Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:31 am

I'm really surprised that some members have Mercedes with a firm ride. As I drove my new van out of the dealers, I was appalled at the softness of the suspension and the wild rolling from side to side - I thought I'd made a terrible mistake; once I got going though (A and B roads on the edge of the Peak District) it drove all right with a ride and cornering not to far from car like.

When pitched, the suspension is still very soft, rolling in wind and needing steadies at the rear; it even rolls a bit with the steadies done as the front suspension is soft as well.

Mercedes do state that the tyre pressures must be set to maximum for a motorhome conversion and I think most of us have dropped them a bit although I found that if I dropped the rears too much, the back end wallowed at 70 ish.

Bernie, when did your spring fail?

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Post by Jaytee on Sat Mar 10, 2018 6:24 pm

Is yours the single or twin spring Peter?

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Post by Bernie Wisely on Sat Mar 10, 2018 7:04 pm

Peter It failed whilst at Thornbury about a fortnight ago, I have always thought the ride was hard though stable, if you ran over a pebble you felt it.

We are really pleased (so far) with the difference in ride quality an the difference in clearance which will of course settle in time.


I've had it on the weighbridge and consulted with Continental about tyre pressures and run them less than what Mercedes  say and it made a real difference to ride quality.
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Post by Peter Brown on Sat Mar 10, 2018 8:27 pm

Jaytee wrote:Is yours the single or twin spring Peter?

Its the single spring.

As my van is the oldest with respect to you and Bernie, I'm beginning to think about possible preventative maintenance. I've had to use Red Pennant in Europe in 2016 and 2017, I'd rather avoid the third time.

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