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Im swapping out my rear leaf springs on my 18' 1986 Sunrader and need to remove the black tank. Does anyone have experience or tips on removing the black tank?

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I did some work on the holding tank plumbing recently.  The tanks are make of polyethylene while the pipes and valves are usually made of ABS plastic.  The tank to ABS sewer pipe is typically  a sealant specific for that purpose.  You want to separate the polyethylene output pipe from the black tank from the ABS (usually 3") pipe and then re-join them there with the correct sealant when you are putting it all back together.  On my sunrader the black tank is sitting on top of a removable steel rail.  I can remove my black tank by taking off that 3" ABS drain pipe, the ABS 1.5" vent pipe,  plus the joint to the toilet (and this can be hard to get to) and then removing some bolts to remove the steel bars and the black tank will come down.  This is not easy or pleasant.  

Bummer that you have to remove the black tank to do the springs.  Out of curiosity, are you buying new springs and if so, which ones?

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He has the same year and model as me. Black tank is ABS. All parts can be put back together with ABS glue and I usually use a slurry of ground up ABS the thicken that glue and make the connection stronger. Removing the outflow shouldn't be needed. The hard part is the vent pipe. Either you have to cut it and put it back together with an ABS connecter and glue or if your lucky you can drop the tank with it still connected and swivel the tank so you have access to the spring bolts. Toilet and shower drains must be disconnected to drop the tank

Linda S

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Im purchasing new springs. there are a couple of great posts on the subject. 

http://toyotamotorhome.org/forums/index.php?/topic/11156-new-leaf-springs/

and

http://toyotamotorhome.org/forums/index.php?/topic/11256-are-my-leaf-springs-blown/

After reading through the details ive decided to go with the ARBCS009R over the ARBCS010R. https://www.4wheelparts.com//p/arb-leaf-spring-cs009r/_/R-BHWQ-CS009R

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thanks for the info on removing the black tank everyone. i had a feeling it was going to be rough getting it out. 

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2 hours ago, mpanzar said:

After reading through the details ive decided to go with the ARBCS009R over the ARBCS010R

The 09R is probably a good choice for an 18".  I did the spring swap in the "are my springs blown" thread.  I bought the 10R's and ended up taking a leaf out to make them into the less expensive 09R's.  If you get the 09R's and still want more lift then you can have my extra leafs to turn them into 10R's.  My guess is that the 10R's would lift the rear of an 18' too high though.

Something I found out the hard way about these springs.  They can have variation of as much as 1/4" high or low and still be in spec.  They will have a "+" for high or a "-" for low painted on them near the end that mounts in the forward fixed mount.  Or it will have no extra mark if they are exactly at spec.  Often folks will order specific pairs to compensate for a heavier side of the vehicle.  I got a pair that came with one + and one -.  I mounted them exactly opposite of what I needed the first time, so I had to swap them around (one side is heavier on mine and by sheer dumb luck the +/- set I received balance out perfect on my rig).  I'm guessing it's a crap shoot when you order unless you call and ask what they have in stock.  A half inch difference is quite a bit if you get one + and one - so you may want to look into this if you can.  I have no idea how to tell if you have a heavier side or not without going to some scales.   performanceworks on ebay has pairs for sale and maybe if you ask them they can tell you what is specifically included in the pair they have for sale (at the same price as 4WheelParts).  

Do you have airbags or just springs alone?    My 21' is probably a good bit heavier and my only concern might be that even the 09R's will end up being a tad high on an 18' rig.  With no air in my air bags the 09R's still had about 1/2" of lift over stock height.   If it ends up riding too high on your rig you can potentially level it with different shackles to lower the rear or by 'cranking' the front end up just a tad with the torsion bars. Does your front end currently ride at spec height?  

The 09R's have the exact same number of leafs as the stock Toyota spring pack, but they are designed to lift a light pickup about 2".  We are taking this same spring designed to lift a light stock pickup/4Runner and using the weight of the camper to squash it down so that it basically ends up being less than 2" of lift.  Exactly how much your rig will compress/squash the springs down from the 2" lift is a function of your rear end weight. In my case it went down to 0.5" with the 09R spring.  What happens if your's has a lift of 1" because it's lighter than mine?  We are re-purposing these cost effective springs made for the 4x4 crowd but there is a bit of risk  involved because we have limited data on the resulting lift on different motorhome rigs.

FWIW, I ordered three sets of "Leaf Spring Shackle Bushing MOOG K200909" and they did not fit the spring correctly.  They were just a bit too long.  I was easily able to cut off 1/8" from the end of each bushing but I'd suggest trying a different brand/part to see if you have better luck than I did with the bushings.

2 hours ago, mpanzar said:

thanks for the info on removing the black tank everyone.

Linda had the good info, I didn't tell you anything useful on that tank issue )-:   I didn't even know they made black tanks out of ABS...  I guess there is a lot more variation across these toyota motorhomes than I thought.

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I just realized thats your post! Im still new to the community. The information and data dump is incredible. 

Thanks for the ± heads up, ive got some friends with scales so ill look into that. My rig definitely has a lean but i am unsure if its do to the current springs or weight. I actually ordered the ARBCS010R after reading the first post and then i read yours and bought the ARBCS009R. Ive got a Toyota box truck that could use some springs so its getting a lift :)

Ive got air bags. the front end is torn apart at the moment getting new bushings and shocks but im running E78-14LT tires from Specialty Tires America (https://www.stausaonline.com/tires/sta-super-traxion/) which are 26.60"Ø vs. the stock 25.7"Ø... so ive got some work to do to figure out what the right ride height will be. 

As for the bushings ive got some polyurethane ones i was going to use, ill let you know how they fit.

 

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Sounds like you are going to get some practice wrestling springs on and off!  

Are you running those E78-14LT tires on all 6 wheels?   Interesting.

"Ride height" is relative and changes with tire diameter of course, but the frame rail between front and rear tires should be (ideally) level regardless of tire height.  Use the frame rail level as a guide.  Note that you measure the front height from the center of the bolt on the lower control arm and in the rear you simply measure from the bottom of the frame to the ground near the rear wheel where the hump in the frame comes back to flat.  The measurements front and rear are not the same value and different years have different heights. The FSM did not correlate to my actual heights and my shackle lengths were different than stock.  The point being, you need to figure out what "level stock height" is for you at the front and back.  The front is more likely to match what is in the FSM, like 10.2".  Get it set there with the torsion bars and then make the frame level and measure the rear and that is stock height for you.  In my case I took stock level and then raised it by about an inch all around because I wanted more clearance.  Take a little time and figure out what stock level is for your rig if you can.  It really just takes a 12" ruler, a long carpenter's square and some patience (a level concrete pad helps too).  In the end, it's ok to have a little bit more height in the back, but not too much.   like 0.5" higher in rear stock height compared to front is not an issue.  1" is kind of pushing it, 1.5" is really way too much.    

I still have a concern that you will end up a little high in the rear with the 09R's plus air bags. I'll be very interested to find out where your heights come out.   You might want to be prepared to crank the front up a bit with the torsion bars if necessary to level things out.  05" to 0.75" lift in the front is possible with the stock setup but you will need to do alignment after that.  More that 0.75" lift on the front with torsion adjustment might need either a ball joint spacer or low profile bump stops on the upper control arm to keep decent front end travel distances.   It does take some time adn a few miles to settle the rear springs so don't freak out when you first install and they are higher than you expected.  Mine settled down by 0.7" after running them for a little while and then they stayed put after that.

doing the front end bushings and shocks is a very good idea. I did the same and I'm glad I did.    Doing that in parallel with the springs will help you get the whole rig set up where you want it.  Don't forget about front end alignment when you are all done.  At a minimum be sure and check the front by eye to make sure the camber is decent (tires sitting upright, not leaning in or out noticeably).  

 

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Yeah leaf springs are never fun.... until they'er done!

Im running them on all 6, and what a difference. While they are great in the snow, i think the real benefit is in the rain. With new Yokohama Y356s my rig was a bobsled in the rain. With the STAs you can feel the rubber keying into the asphalt when braking. Hands down the best upgrade to my rig yet. 

Good info regarding ride height. The PO had kept the front end pretty tall, maybe even new torsion bars at some point but if i hit a rolling bump i swear the sunrader wants to do a wheelie! so im considering putting in new torsion bars as well. the ones on your post seem reasonable, i just need to do some math and figure out if the increase in spring rate will help or hurt me. I also need to investigate the shocks as well, the rebound maybe shot.

Ive got the tools to properly adjust alignment so i should be in good shape.

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