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 When to change torsion bars and leaf springs

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nieldavis
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Number of posts : 3
Home City : Widecombe in the Moor
Model and year : 1993 Hi-Ace 2.8 LH-129 part time 4WD
Registration date : 2017-01-14

PostSubject: When to change torsion bars and leaf springs   Sun Sep 17, 2017 10:49 am

Hi everyone

I've recently acquired my first Hi-Ace. Hurrah! 1993, 2.8 3L, LH-129, part-time 4WD.

I like it, but it wallows like a hippo corners and bounces like a pogo stick over uneven ground . I know this van was not built to be a racing snake but my gut feeling is that it's time to bite the bullet and start replacing stuff. 93,000 miles, 24 years old after all.

I'm starting with replacing all of the anti-roll bar rubber this weekend. Cheap-ish and easy DIY. Visually frayed but not completely shot - seen worse. By the way, does anyone have torque values for this? My plan is finger tight, lower onto ground, bounce, then tighten, as per previous vehicles with similar set-ups, but I can't find a torque figure for anti-roll bar link nuts etc once on the ground in the pdf workshop manuals I have scratched together. Anyone know?

So my question is - if the new anti-roll bar rubber doesn't miraculously transform the handling, where would you guys go next -

1 - Shocks (also cheap-ish from Toyota, no visual leaks on mine at present, but I suppose they could still be tired)?
Or
2 - Torsion bars and leaf springs (not cheap at all, so wouldn't want to change these and find no change...)?

I don't have the data for proper measurements, but looking at the van from the side, the ride height is symmetrical and equal all round, and (based on gut feeling only, wheel arch gaps etc) it doesn't look like it's obviously sagging to me.

I've never had a vehicle with either torsion bars or leaf springs before. Presumably, like any design of spring, the metal eventually loses it's memory and they need replacing. Obviously it will vary vastly on terrain and driving style, but my last question is -

3 - Has anyone got any advice on how many miles or years they're intended to last, on average?

Many thanks for you help
Niel
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mickB
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Number of posts : 148
Age : 47
Home City : Coventry
Model and year : 1992 SC 2.4TD
Registration date : 2016-07-06

PostSubject: Re: When to change torsion bars and leaf springs   Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:20 am

I'll be doing similar soon to me 2.4 Super Custom, plan is to replace anti roll bar rubbers and links, fit gas/uprated shocks all round then lower the rear with custom made lowered and stiffened coil springs and wind of the front torsion bar nut some more, already wound it off about 20mm on thread to drop the front a bit, downside to this is I'm taking tension out so it make it more wallowy so I'm looking at different manufactures shocks namely VW T4 gas shocks as they should fit given a little fettling
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GPW
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Number of posts : 473
Home City : Cambridge, UK
Model and year : Model: KD-KZH100G-MRPGT
Year: 1996
Colour: 4K1
Trim: FN42

Registration date : 2016-07-16

PostSubject: Re: When to change torsion bars and leaf springs   Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:02 am

I suspect wallowing and bouncing can only be shocks TBH.
There was a manual download on this site that may have torque figures, else the Hilux one may have a similar under-pinning.
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nieldavis
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Number of posts : 3
Home City : Widecombe in the Moor
Model and year : 1993 Hi-Ace 2.8 LH-129 part time 4WD
Registration date : 2017-01-14

PostSubject: Leaf springs and torsion bars   Today at 8:54 am

Thanks for the replies.
I agree - my money is on the shocks being the most likely culprit.
Does anyone have an opinion on when torsion bars and leaf springs should be replaced as a matter of routine? Or do people just run them until they break?!
Niel
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GPW
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Number of posts : 473
Home City : Cambridge, UK
Model and year : Model: KD-KZH100G-MRPGT
Year: 1996
Colour: 4K1
Trim: FN42

Registration date : 2016-07-16

PostSubject: Re: When to change torsion bars and leaf springs   Today at 10:24 am

If they get too rusty or break I guess, I'm not such an expert on spring life except to know that macpherson struts (on the front of lots of cars) break when the top bearing starts getting stiff, and I did have a coil break off on the back of an old car due to age so new springs certainly wouldn't hurt, assuming the job was easy and didn't disturb too much of the rest of the car.

I did discover you had to unload the front of the van to turn the torsion bar adjusters though - they are a bit stiff with the full weight on them.
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