Suspension bolt advice please

I am building a camping trailer with a five link suspension, much the same as a 100 Series L/C. Am using standard lower L/C trailing arms and Nolathane bushes with home made brackets.
The standard Toyota bolts won't fit because of the bracket design, so I've gone with hi tensile bolts and Nyloc washers, with maybe a split pin on the end for safety. Trouble is that the bolts should be a tight fit on the bolt head end to stop the bolts from rotating.
My options are to weld a couple of tabs onto the brackets to stop the bolts from rotating (which may put undue strain on the bolt) OR to use anti-vibration washers and a bit of Loctite against the brackets on both the bolt head and nut end (which may not work in the longer term).
Which would be the lesser of these two evils?
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Reply By: Ross M - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 15:26

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 15:26
Unclear as to how you are terminating the end sections with the bolts etc.

Can you add a link to a picture so we can see the setup?

Whatever you are doing just tye to ensure the stresses on bolts and brackets are smoothly taken during use and no sudden twist or bend forces are delivered to vital bits.
AnswerID: 478565

Reply By: Member - Keith Berg - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 15:57

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 15:57
Here is a photpo of the setup. The plates that form the suspension brackets will have stiffeners welded between them so that the bolts can be pulled up tight without squashing the bushes.
Image Could Not Be Found
AnswerID: 478566

Follow Up By: Member - Rob D (NSW) - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 17:22

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 17:22
I can not see any thing to cope with the lateral (sideways) forces. Am I missing something or is it hidden in the photo.
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Regards Rob

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Reply By: splits - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 16:27

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 16:27
Keith
I assume you mean welding on a tab that sits up against one of the flats on the bolt head to stop it rotating. That system is used on many cars with some going as far as having a tear drop shaped plate as part of the bolt head. It sticks out on one side and is usually attached to the bracket or chassis by a small bolt.

You may run into a bit of trouble no matter which way you go because of the nolathane bushes. There is always some degree of binding in five link or triangulated four link suspensions. The ends of the links move in different size and direction arcs to the axle. Manufacturers compensate by using large rubber bushes to absorb it or open C channel locating arms that are designed to twist. Nolathane is very hard with little give in it. It is of little use when it comes to absorbing twisting so the stresses are passed on to the arms or their mounting brackets with cracks the most likely result. This could be far worse on an off road trailer that will most likely have a lot of suspension movement.

Enter "nolathane bushes review" into Google and you will see a number of sites giving mixed reviews. There may be a lot more if you look further.
AnswerID: 478572

Follow Up By: Ross M - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 18:08

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 18:08
I agre with you Kieth, the suspension flex required when one wheel is up and the other down will most likely get the setup of the bushes to splitting point fairly early.

If the arms were the same as 80 series LC with pivoting ends and dual under or over axle bushes the would be no problem developing on high twist country.

The panhard rod cross link will have to be as long as possible to minimize the amount of side shift happening at full extension or compression particularly when the droop side is the same side as the panhard fix to the axle.
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Follow Up By: Member - Keith Berg - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 18:38

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 18:38
Thank you all.
There's a rod in there that went in after the photo was taken. Ditto for dual shockers and air bag brackets. The suspension seems to articulate OK, without any straining or groaning. I went for Nolathane bushes because they are easy to replace by the side of the road. These ones seem to flex quite well and are standard replacements for 100 Series trailing arms. Maybe Nolathane comes in different grades.
I'm just worried about the bolts rotating in the brackets and wearing quickly, rather than the bushes rotating on the bolts.
Thanks for the heads-up.
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Follow Up By: Ross M - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 20:10

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 20:10
It is good you have checked the bits we discussedre flex etc.
With the bolt issue, because they have no real big stress on them axially it would be ok the remove one flat, back to half the annular distance from the stem.
This would give you a much larger flat surface to present against the anti turn plates welded to the brackets and not affect the clamping ability of the setup as it is now.
If you do this with a 1mm cutoff wheel in grinder then there will be hardly any heat input.

cheers
Ross M
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Follow Up By: Member - Keith Berg - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 21:06

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 21:06
Thanks Ross,
Not everybopdy understands the problem. I want the load to go on the shank of the bolt, not the head.
Your suggestion is a seriously good idea. Where should the flat be: top, bottom, facing the axle or away from the axle?
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Follow Up By: Ross M - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 22:49

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 22:49
I think a stopper about 10mm square and 25mm long would fit nicely against the large flats you create on one side of the bolt heads. This should give sufficient resistance to any rotational forces exerted on the bolts by the action of the arms and the polybush's frictional grip.

I would use a jig to slip each bolt into for cutting because you want the flat cut in the same spot for each bolt otherwise you will have to dedicate each bolt to its own through hole to ensure a no slack fit. Don't ya just love assembly lines?

You appear to have enough room for the stoppers so they can be welded to the upright plates parallel with the forward or back edges.
Cheers

Ross M
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Follow Up By: Member - Keith Berg - Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 10:23

Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 10:23
Thanks Ross.
That's exactly what I'll do and make aup a few spares at the same time. I'll fit Shaker's cone nuts as well.
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Reply By: Shaker - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 20:16

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 20:16
Might I suggest that you check out 'cone nuts' to use in lieu of nylon nuts.

AnswerID: 478582

Follow Up By: Member - Keith Berg - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 21:38

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 21:38
Thanks Shaker,
On a recommendation, I actually got Cone nuts for the 20mm botton shock absorber bolts. But, at age 63, I was too piss weak to do them up!
The guys at Pedders tell me that the off road racers use Cone nuts, anti-vibration washers and a bit of Loctite and have absolute reliability as a result.
But I'm not an off road racer. All I want is to boil the billy with the Love of My Life at sunset on the top of a sand dune.
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 09:33

Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 09:33
That is exactly the reason why should use them, remember 'easy on .... easy off"!
Vehicle manufacturers use them quite extensively, I have had nylocs vibrate loose in the Outback & yes, I do realise that they are single use item.
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Follow Up By: Member - Keith Berg - Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 10:20

Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 10:20
You've convinced me, Shaker. Cone nuts it will be. I think most of the automotive threads are about 1.25 pitch, which probably makes them less prone to vibration. The finest I've been able to buy over the counter is 1.5. This strengthens the case for cone nuts. Thanks.
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FollowupID: 754132

Reply By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 20:38

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 20:38
The disc brakes are interesting!! How are you going to operate them? regards Michael

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AnswerID: 478583

Follow Up By: Member - Keith Berg - Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 21:11

Friday, Feb 24, 2012 at 21:11
If I can sell the wife's jewellry, I'm thinking about electric over hydraulic with a breakaway thingy. I like the idea of disks for long decents and they are much better in the wet. The TOYO setup gives removalble axle stubs and great parts availability in the bush.
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Reply By: Peter_n_Margaret - Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 06:25

Saturday, Feb 25, 2012 at 06:25
I put mechanical override discs on a boat trailer that I towed from Brisbane due west to the Kimberley and back.
Make sure the pads have REALLY good anti rattle springs otherwise they tend to self destruct with the corrugations.

Cheers,
Peter
OKA196 Motorhome
AnswerID: 478596

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