Gas struts failure

Submitted: Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 15:43
ThreadID: 133333 Views:2806 Replies:6 FollowUps:12
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Just returned from Cape York trip ( Development Road ) birdsville etc , bought a brand new set of gas struts from a major parts retailer before I left that go on my boat rack on camper trailer and they have failed ~ leaked out gas before we got home 10,000ks +trip 50 % on dirt roads . Could corrugated roads affect the internal workings of these gas struts ?.
Cheers Nick b
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Reply By: Ron N - Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 22:27

Monday, Aug 29, 2016 at 22:27
No. They are faulty, take them back and demand replacements, or a refund.

Cheers, Ron.
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Reply By: Malcom M - Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 08:13

Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 08:13
So these are fitted externally?
Very fine dust can get into the seals and stuff them but Cape York dust should be ok.
BDR dust is finer and could have killed them. Guessing they were not the highest quality to begin with from a parts retailer so probably didn't take much to wear them out.

Clean them up well and return them.
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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 09:20

Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 09:20
yes externally ..
have returned them & will be interesting to see what the " supplier " says about the problem .
Cheers Nick b
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 13:40

Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 13:40
There's plenty of cheap manufactured rubbish on the market, and it takes time to sort out what has been built to a price, and what has been built to a standard.

So much Chinese stuff has hard plastic materials substituted for seals, instead of using good quality materials such as nylon, butyl rubber, teflon, and viton.

A few years ago, saw a stack of Snap-On trolley jacks being repaired under warranty, purely because the Chinese substituted rubbishy plastic for seals, instead of using the quality seal materials specified by Snap-On.

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: Malcom M - Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 13:54

Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 13:54
Quality seals won't defeat outback dust. It gets past the seals in Toyota ball joints which are hardly crap.
As the struts are external, I'd carrying a spare set for next time.
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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Friday, Sep 02, 2016 at 09:51

Friday, Sep 02, 2016 at 09:51
Malcom M : sounds like you are on the money , they think it must be dust ???
and said i should have fitted them with the main body up so dust don't sit on top
aswel they are going to supply with the replacements a dust seal thingo because the are fitted exterior on off road camper , this was also suggested from a third party . I don't believe these are cheap I paid good money with trade discount .
whilst not making excuses for them we did travel 4000ks on gravel rd .
Cheers Nick b
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Follow Up By: Malcom M - Friday, Sep 02, 2016 at 10:04

Friday, Sep 02, 2016 at 10:04
Nick

You aren't going to get around this problem easily as you obviously want to travel where there is dust.
It doesn't matter how much you spend on the struts, the dust will kill them eventually . I've had two Toyota factory lower ball joints fail due to dust getting past the boots then the seals then grinding out the nylon bushes inside. Externally there was no visible sign of damage. Boots and seals looked perfect but when the casing was chopped apart you could see the layer of dust inside plus the worn away nylon.

Carry a spare set of cheap struts so you can get yourself out of trouble.
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Reply By: 9900Eagle - Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 14:17

Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 14:17
Nick,
I believe the struts will be cheap ones and have just plain failed. If they are in warranty, ask politely for new ones or your money back.

Dust and corrugations will cause a shorter life but not that short. Have a think about the bonnet struts used in vehicles, they last very long time before needing maintenance or replacement.

They are the same principle as the hydraulic rams on a tipper, dozer or any other piece of earthmoving equipment that run day in and day out through some serious dust and vibration. Sit in the chair of of a dozer on hard ground and you will know what I am talking about. Mostly, they last a good few years before they defecate themselves.
AnswerID: 603974

Follow Up By: Ron N - Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 17:30

Tuesday, Aug 30, 2016 at 17:30
Missus's old Camry is 15 yrs old and the bonnet struts still work just fine - however, not quite as effective as they were when it was new - so they have obviously lost a bit of gas over the 15 yrs.
Bonnet struts cop a lot of constant heating and cooling due to engine bay temperature variations, and that alone would create the potential for gas losses.

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 19:43

Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 19:43
thanks 990Eagle for your reply : they maybe cheap but certainly not cheap , lol
Cheers Nick b
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Reply By: Sigmund - Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 11:15

Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 11:15
As Robert Pepper says, a shock is a device for converting movement to heat.

If there's more movement over a given time than the shock is designed for, there'll be excessive heat, and likely failure if not premature wear. Offroad and corrugations demand a lot of shocks. Even Bilsteins can fail under those circumstances.

Many people don't appreciate that in any case a shock is a wear item. Repeated heating degrades the oil and erratic damping is the result. If in doubt about yours, take them to a place with a shock dyno for testing. Or if they're cheapies, just replace them.

After 20,000 kms, many of them hard, my Dobinson MRRs needed servicing. The standard Dobinsons lasted 30,000. Go figure.
AnswerID: 603992

Follow Up By: Ron N - Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 12:27

Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 12:27
Sigmund - You appear to have missed the mark. The OP is talking about gas support struts, not gas shock absorbers. Totally different items, and totally different operating conditions.
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Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 13:39

Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 13:39
Sigmund sorry but we are talking about gas struts that hold up things like bonnet etc , this is boat rack on my camper trailer in this case .
Cheers Nick b
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Follow Up By: Sigmund - Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 13:46

Wednesday, Aug 31, 2016 at 13:46
Yes, I see that now. Thought you were talking about a Monroe gas strut or similar.

Oh well, no charge.
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Reply By: The Bantam - Thursday, Sep 01, 2016 at 23:43

Thursday, Sep 01, 2016 at 23:43
Next time buy your struts from a transport parts supplier like McNaughtons.

You will get a better strut for less ...... gassed to your specification while you wait

cheers
AnswerID: 604040

Follow Up By: Ron N - Friday, Sep 02, 2016 at 00:08

Friday, Sep 02, 2016 at 00:08
I have to agree with The Bantam. I only found McNaughtans (correct spelling) locally (by accident), last year.
They have reasonable prices, a large range of products, and good (counter) service. They also have an adequate number of staff.
I bought some stainless piano hinge off them for a large toolbox, and there was a good range to choose from, and it was well priced.

Cheers, Ron.
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Reply By: Member - Mike P4 - Tuesday, Sep 06, 2016 at 23:19

Tuesday, Sep 06, 2016 at 23:19
Just for next time try stretching a tight o ring onto the strut shaft. It will act as a wiper and keep dust from main seal. We would just warrant these ones but I gotta say I always get a laugh at people who say there just cheap ones. Next time given the choice 90 percent will want Aussie made product which pretty much don't exist at Chinese made price.
AnswerID: 604180

Follow Up By: Member - nick b - Wednesday, Sep 07, 2016 at 20:29

Wednesday, Sep 07, 2016 at 20:29
thanks Mike : The replacment struts have been replace & i have got with them a tight rubber seal/grommet & plastic boot that covers the shaft supplied by supplier so looks like a shocker ....
Cheers Nick b
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