New Defender suspension sag

Submitted: Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 09:45
ThreadID: 30826 Views:3680 Replies:10 FollowUps:6
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I bought a new Defender a few months ago, and reckon the front springs are sagged...less than 50mm from the bump stops. The coils are progressive, and the top 3 or 4 loops are resting on each other. It doesn't look normal to me, and it bottoms out up front pretty easily. Does anyone have any similar experience or comment, please? I'll be taking it back for warranty soon, but not much point getting them to replace the springs, if they are exactly the same. It would be better to go aftermarket, and wear the cost.

Still on suspension, the Defender from new was pretty close to being unroadworthy with the ability of the shock absorbers. Dirt roads that I would drive at 90kph very comfirtably in my old GU, had the rear end scampering about if I went over 70 kph in the Defender. Clearly quite dangerous! How can Land Rover get away with such substandard/unroadworthy shocks?

I'd appreciate any helpful comment please.

Regards
Brid
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Reply By: Spinifex - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 09:54

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 09:54
What tyre pressures are you running?

My reason for asking is that I met a bloke in Birdsille with a Defender running 70psi in his tyres.......saying it was recommended
AnswerID: 155304

Follow Up By: Redback - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 09:58

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 09:58
Factory setting is 65psi
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FollowupID: 409259

Follow Up By: Spinifex - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 10:05

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 10:05
There you go. Some thoughts from a Landrover man...LOL

So I was'nt too far off.

Thought that that is what makes Defender jump around on corru's
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FollowupID: 409261

Follow Up By: Member - Omaroo (NSW) - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:08

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:08
28lb front, 48lb rear - at all load configurations.... it works (believe it or not)! :)
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FollowupID: 409287

Follow Up By: Redback - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 14:52

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 14:52
The Fender owner who told me that 65psi standard must have been tellin porkies, or is that a loaded pressure, 28/48 seems more like it.

The Disco is 28/38 unlaiden and 28/42 loaded, i run 30/40 seems to work, i tried what the tyre place reccommended 36psi allround and found the car wondering, so went back to the placard pressures.

Baz.
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FollowupID: 409319

Reply By: Redback - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 10:07

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 10:07
If you have a manual find the height description for your car (normally measured from centre of wheel cap to top of wheel arch) get the factory height then measure yours and see if they differ.

By the sounds of it the springs and shocks are not good, cause normally Fenders are good standard

Get them replaced under warrenty if they are sagged.

Have a look here, AULRO if you need more help it's a Landy forum, there's some good blokes on there that can help.

Baz.
AnswerID: 155307

Reply By: Alan H - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 11:55

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 11:55
Hi brd.
Never had that problem on mine but I have heard that owners with heavy bars plus winches usually fit upgraded springs on the front.
I did have a bit of skipping around on corruagtions but fixed that by lowering the pressures allround but they were never as high as 70psi to start with.
I thought the max at the back fully loaded was 48 and front 28psi which is what I normally run on.
Alan.
AnswerID: 155328

Reply By: Alan H - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:03

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:03
Hi brd.
Never had either of those probs. on mine but have heard that owners with heavy bars and winches do have upgraded springs fitted to counter sag.
We did suffer from some skipping around on corrugations but never was it dangerous.
That was easily fixed by letting the pressures down around 25 - 30% but they were never as high as 70psi to start with.

I believed the max when fully loaded was 48 rear and 28 front which is what I usually run on when travelling for holidays and it handles OK at those pressures.
Experiment a bit to find which suits you and the road best.
Alan.
AnswerID: 155333

Reply By: brd - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:32

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:32
The scampering around above 70kph on dirt was corrected some time ago, when I put on Munroe shocks. The real concern at the moment is the front springs. The easiest measure if they're sagged is the bump stop to axle housing clearance. Mine is under 50 mm, with ARB bar, but no winch. Not much weight really. I run light with 28-30psi front and 38 rear, but this shouldn't affect the spring issue.

What I'm trying to determine is, if this is standard clearance for Defender, there's no point switching under warranty. If they are sagged, but all Defender springs sag the same, still no point with warranty. But, if they are just a bad batch from new, then I will want them fixed under warranty. Any comments with clearance to the front bump stop will be useful, please.

Thanks
AnswerID: 155347

Follow Up By: Rosco - Qld - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:46

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:46
Brd

I just measured mine at 75mm. The springs I spoke about below were supposed to correct the weight of the winch and restore the normal clearance.
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FollowupID: 409298

Reply By: Rosco - Qld - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:37

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 12:37
G'day Brd

2 questions ...

1. Does it have a bull bar?
2. Does it have a bull bar + a winch.

Mine came std with bull bar and not that long after loading up with a winch the top loops were tired and resting together.

Fixed it by a good set of Kings (I think).

If neither of the above, get them replaced under warranty and see how you go.

I also agree I think tyre pressure has something to do with it skipping around.
I know it says 48/28 on the placard, but I prefer 42/32 for general driving and only increase the rear when loaded up.

Cheers

Rosco
AnswerID: 155349

Follow Up By: brd - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 14:20

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 14:20
Thanks Rosco

75mm sounds more reasonable. I don't have a winch, just an ARB steel bar up front. The top 3 or 4 loops are resting together on mine, which suggests they have sagged. It bottoms out easily up front also.

The bull bar weight is reportedly about 40-50kg, maybe 25-35 kg more than the bumper bar. i wouldn't have expected this to cause sagging, but if so, the LR replacements mightn't last long.

Thanks for your comments. I appreciate them
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FollowupID: 409315

Reply By: StephenF10 - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 15:45

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 15:45
It could just be the weight of the bullbar. My '01 Disco had an ARB bar fitted by the previous owner and the front end would bottom out over supermarket speed humps. A 30mm OME lift fixed it.

Stephen.
AnswerID: 155371

Reply By: lindsay - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 15:57

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 15:57
Landrover replaced mine after 6 months under warranty (after the Canning) with heavy aftermarket springs. We have a steel bullbar and 10,000 lb warn winch. No further problems after another 100,000 Ks.
AnswerID: 155372

Reply By: Ken - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 16:29

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 16:29
Having this pressure in the tyres will certainly cause it to skip all over the place. It is far too high.
As for the sagging, it could be that the springs are faulty. Progressive springs are great for ride quality but it means the 'soft' segment of the spring is always doing the work. Eventually this part of the spring will sag first. If they are faulty they may have failed prematurely. A few months even of really hard work should not have resulted in sagging yet.
Personally I don't think progressive rate springs are the the go on 4WD's if you are going to work them hard. No doubt there differing views on this and I don't want to kick off a new topic of dispute a la engel/waeco or Cooper/BFG but it seems to me spring rates should be appropriate for the load. Compromising rates is an attempt to improve the ride though this means performance in rough stuff is also compromised.
Ken
AnswerID: 155379

Reply By: snailbait (Blue mntns) - Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 17:05

Thursday, Feb 16, 2006 at 17:05
hi brd
What type of Defender do you have a 110 or 130
and there is diferent springs go with each type also there is a heavy duty and light duty springs
If you have a 130 you should have good front springs they should not sagge
if you have heavy weight on the tray of a 130 you will need to get new springs

now if you have a 110 with progressive spring what people in my club do is to put 130 front springs under the front of the 110 now here is the trickey bit if they are used springs ie second hand from wrecker have them re worked at the local spring place have them re heat treated and stretched 25 mm
further i would sugest you have the rear springs re heat treated and streched 25 mm
dont worry if the spring place tels you that they will sag as i have done this to my 2001 110 EXTRME DEFENDER over 12 months a go
and they are as tall as they were when put after the reworking
The reason for this is i think that when heat treated on the production line in the UK the spring s are not shot penned and spragged
this should give you a better ride and many ks of driving
Snailbate
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