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Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan #729027
October 18th 2017 4:01 am
October 18th 2017 4:01 am
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Victoroa, BC, Canada
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SFP Offline OP
stranger
SFP  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
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Victoroa, BC, Canada
I'm looking to help a friend upgrade the front shocks and springs on a 1974 Dodge B200 campervan.

This is the long unit (maxi???) with the factory raised roof.

The back shocks were upgraded last year to Monroe Coil-over Heavy duty shocks (shocks with the coil added). Eventually would like Bilstein

At the same time, last year the front end had basic addressed: new idler arms, control arms, steering box, front brakes.

Shock wise I'm thinking the Bilstien 4600 (not sure if I want the upto GVW 8400, or the over 9000).
Bilstein 4600 GVW 9000lbs SKU 24-014014 -- (this might be overkill)
Bilstein 4600 GVW 4000 to 8300lbs SKU 24-184632 -- (this I suspect is the standard replacement)


Spring wise, the game plan is to hit the local spring company and have a set made. Was also thinking of some spring insulators (anyone have something they would like to recommend?)

Anything anyone would like to add? I miss anything? Any other upgrades I should do at this time? new bushings?

Thanks in advance,
Scott

link to Van photo gallery (new to upload some newer shots)
http://prints.scottfraserphotography.com/Portfolios/Series/Samantha-The-Big-Blue-Van/n-rT8GSM/

Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #729041
October 18th 2017 11:36 am
October 18th 2017 11:36 am
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 14,404
Van Diego California
frscke1 Offline
frscke1  Offline

Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 14,404
Van Diego California
Hey Scott, welcome to the site ....

I run the Bilstiens HD as my vans weigh #8860 & #9350. They do have a nice ride if the weight is right & heavy, as I have a 454 for them to support. For a G20 it might be a stiff ride. If there is a anti sway bar, Id replace the neo bushings & might want a steering dampener for your long boy.

Again welcome ..


SUNSHINE VANS-VAN DIEGO
ADRENALIN BY THE GALLON & CHASIN RACIN
ONE FOR THE DIRT & ONE FOR THE STREETS
'93 CHEVY G30 454 4X4 SPORTVAN EXT 146" WB
'92 CHEVY G30 454 BEAUVILLE EXT 146" WB
Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #729045
October 18th 2017 12:36 pm
October 18th 2017 12:36 pm
Joined: Nov 2013
Posts: 1,204
West Texas
W
Wedgy Offline
old hand
Wedgy  Offline
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West Texas
Hi Scott, Welcome to the Site! Pretty nice Dodge.

I do know my B250 front coils feel soft for a 3/4 ton. I went with KYB's, and I wish I had gone with stiffer shocks on it. I'd not hesitate to go with the heavier Bilstiens on Samantha. Really great picture gallery too there eh!

Frscke1 mentioned the sway bay. They make s big difference. If it doesn't have one, it needs one.

You'd like the B350 rated coils. My Xplorer B350 rides nice, yes it is heavy. Lol. Xplorer's Factory Hellwig helper spring setup, plus airbags in the rear, and I run the stiffest heaviest Bilstiens I could get.

The G30 I have has stock suspension. Bilstiens and the same stiff tires as the Campervan, and empty it is a stiff ride. Even with the 454. However, it's very stable in a fierce crosswind!

I'd lean toward stability, especialy in a Hightop.



"Who New? Blue"
1990 Chevy G30 454
Church Van, maternity division

"Old Blue"
1988 Dodge B250

"Cabin Cruiser"
'94 Dodge B350 www.xplorermotorhome.com/
Xplorer MH model 230 230 hp MPI 360 LA Wedgy OD auto

Old vans never really die if we chose to let them live
Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #729101
October 20th 2017 2:28 am
October 20th 2017 2:28 am
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Victoroa, BC, Canada
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SFP Offline OP
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SFP  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
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Victoroa, BC, Canada
Thank You Frscke1 and Wedgy,
I think that the heavy duty Bilstiens will be the way to go (up front). Spring wise I see Moog makes a couple different sets (3/4 and 1 ton), and from what I have read, the 1 Tons work well in the 3/4, especially with a high-top. But, figure the local Spring shop will be cheaper in the long run.

Sway bars. yes, game plan is it install one in the back once funds allow, and ideally replace the front with something newer. Options appear to be limited, but at least there are options ;)


Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #729110
October 20th 2017 12:14 pm
October 20th 2017 12:14 pm
Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 14,404
Van Diego California
frscke1 Offline
frscke1  Offline

Joined: Jun 2010
Posts: 14,404
Van Diego California
The anti sway & steering dampener on my '92 Chevy

[Linked Image]


SUNSHINE VANS-VAN DIEGO
ADRENALIN BY THE GALLON & CHASIN RACIN
ONE FOR THE DIRT & ONE FOR THE STREETS
'93 CHEVY G30 454 4X4 SPORTVAN EXT 146" WB
'92 CHEVY G30 454 BEAUVILLE EXT 146" WB
Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #736789
May 30th 2018 12:28 am
May 30th 2018 12:28 am
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Victoroa, BC, Canada
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SFP Offline OP
stranger
SFP  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Victoroa, BC, Canada
Update.

Van went in today to have new shocks, springs and insulators installed. Budget and availability of the Bilstiens didn't work at this time, so went with a pair of Monroe Gas Magnum shocks up front.

Parts:
Moog 7272 (1 ton)
Moog K160037 - spring isolators
Monroe Gas Magnum with Rec package shocks (http://www.monroe.com/en-US/e-catalog/34831)

Look forward to seeing the difference, as I suspect it is going to a big difference over the old worn out stuff that only the Gods know was last done.

Will follow up after we put a few miles on it.

Last edited by SFP; May 30th 2018 12:28 am.
Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #736790
May 30th 2018 1:09 am
May 30th 2018 1:09 am
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 2,678
San Diego
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wrcsixeight Offline
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San Diego
Some 7 years ago or so i replced he coil spring in m 89 b250 with Moog 7272 from the existing 7270 spring thickness(thinner). I was thinking it might ride too stiff.

It does not.

I have KYB gas-a-Just shocks which are known to be a stiff shock.

I think My van handles quite well now.

I thought the pre 78's used a different length coil spring as they had a different suspension geometry, but could certainly be wrong


Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #736820
May 31st 2018 1:12 am
May 31st 2018 1:12 am
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Victoroa, BC, Canada
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SFP Offline OP
stranger
SFP  Offline OP
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Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Victoroa, BC, Canada
Well, she handles a WHOLE lot better. Honestly, have driven Volvos that aren't that tight on steering.

And she has now entered her East L.A. phase.

next step, rear springs.

Anyone know what the part number or if Moog even makes a matching rear spring to the 7272 front?

Thank you again for all your help on this project.

Photo from when I got her home to my place

https://prints.scottfraserphotograp...ha-The-Big-Blue-Van/n-rT8GSM/i-dKXQpvg/A

Last edited by SFP; May 31st 2018 1:42 am.
Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #736834
May 31st 2018 11:27 am
May 31st 2018 11:27 am
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 70
Vansfield, USA
Sparkynm Offline
journeyman
Sparkynm  Offline
journeyman
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 70
Vansfield, USA
Moog doesn't do rears. Rock Auto lists a couple, depending on shackle design! Have seen Eaton Springs and others mentioned here. Do you have any local suspension shops? Shipping might get costly!!

Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: Sparkynm] #736840
May 31st 2018 4:16 pm
May 31st 2018 4:16 pm
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 6
Victoroa, BC, Canada
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SFP Offline OP
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SFP  Offline OP
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Victoroa, BC, Canada
Well then it's the local spring shop (Westshore Spring & 4X4 here in Victoria). Also need to get a wheel alignment done. And yes, a steering dampener wouldn't hurt either.

Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: wrcsixeight] #736929
June 03rd 2018 10:42 am
June 03rd 2018 10:42 am
Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 87
Seattle, Washington, USA
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RichardB Offline
journeyman
RichardB  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2018
Posts: 87
Seattle, Washington, USA
Originally Posted by wrcsixeight
Some 7 years ago or so i replced he coil spring in m 89 b250 with Moog 7272 from the existing 7270 spring thickness(thinner). I was thinking it might ride too stiff.

It does not.

I have KYB gas-a-Just shocks which are known to be a stiff shock.

I think My van handles quite well now.

I thought the pre 78's used a different length coil spring as they had a different suspension geometry, but could certainly be wrong



Last month I did exactly this upgrade on my 91 B250, and replaced the factory sway bar bushings with Moog poly bushings, and installed a moog steering damper. I haven't done the control arm bushings yet but it already rides and handles worlds better! It was quick and easy too, only took about 2 or 3 hours on a Sunday morning.

Also for the orginal poster. If you don't have a good local spring shop to rebuild your rear leaf springs, a air bag set up is pretty quick and easy. I installed an Air Lift spring set on the back of my B250, with 10psi in the back empty and 20+ with people it really made a big difference. No more rear end sag and bounce! I'd still like to get a rear sway bar, but that's going to be a down the line/if at all thing at this point. I should replace the leaf spring shackle bushings though.

- Rich


1991 Dodge B250 Zephyr Conversion. "Bi-frost" 74,000-ish original miles and counting.
- 318TBI; has headwork and other bolt on upgrades. Runs strong and smooth!
- Powertrax locker
- Rear air springs, rebuilt suspension, steering stabilizer.
Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: SFP] #737316
June 15th 2018 5:06 am
June 15th 2018 5:06 am
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 22
UK
L
LazySteve Offline
stranger
LazySteve  Offline
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Posts: 22
UK
I went with air bags on the back as well - very pleased.

Just going back to the original post, in case anyone runs into this question again. SFP said:

"Shock wise I'm thinking the Bilstien 4600 (not sure if I want the upto GVW 8400, or the over 9000).
Bilstein 4600 GVW 9000lbs SKU 24-014014 -- (this might be overkill)
Bilstein 4600 GVW 4000 to 8300lbs SKU 24-184632 -- (this I suspect is the standard replacement)"

I don't think those shocks are interchangeable - the first one is for the 4,000lbs front axle which I think is a longer shock; the second one is for front axle up to 3,800lbs. I guess the first one probably is a heavier duty shock than the second but the second one is not "standard replacement" (ie. not like OEM).

Just in case that helps anyone :-)

Re: Front Shocks, Springs upgrade - '74 B200 Campervan [Re: wrcsixeight] #737353
June 17th 2018 1:07 am
June 17th 2018 1:07 am
Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 7
Montreal, QC
nomade Offline
stranger
nomade  Offline
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Joined: Jul 2011
Posts: 7
Montreal, QC
Originally Posted by wrcsixeight

I thought the pre 78's used a different length coil spring as they had a different suspension geometry, but could certainly be wrong


You're right. pre-78 had a different lower control arm design and used shorter springs w/o isolators.--> 1978 front end rebuild
Using Moog 7270 or 7272 (instead of 7170 / 7172) and isolators will give some lift over stock height. Then, getting the rear springs re-arched and/or adding a leaf to level out the van sounds like the way to go.





Last edited by nomade; June 17th 2018 1:08 am.

"Hey, I like that paint job you got. What they call that-sorta a cross between Piss Yellow and Puke Green, ain't it?" - Bob Falfa
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