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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I'm starting to do a bit of towing of a large enclosed motorcycle race trailer now. I'm towing up near the limit (just under 300# tongue and 3000 gross of an allowable 350/3500) It drops the rear a bit more than I would like for good suspension and steering geometry.
I knew this was coming and so opted for the more stiffly sprung SE, but I need still more rear rate when towing.

Does anyone know of a helper spring, either metal, or pneumatic, that is Murano specific (or one that is generic and can be retrofit)
Just need to gain back an inch or so of rear ride height. I'd like to use some sort of air system to increase rear rate just when towing.

Thanks
Regards
Roger


p.s. what about weight distributing hitches? I just have a regular class-III 2" receiver on there now.
 

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rogmur-

To the best of my knowledge, MightyMo is the only member who has installed air springs on his MO. MightyMo needed the springs to tow a race-ready "Z". Hopefully he will see this thread and steer you in the right direction.

-njjoe
 

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Took the words right out of my mouth!

:D
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies gang.

Doesn't seem to be a lot of Murano towning going on. (maybe other Mo owners are smarter than me)

Did some more creative googling very early this morning and found something.
Firestone airbags (helper air springs)
Not sure why they didn't turn up in my initial searches.

http://www.suspensionconnection.com/cgi-bin/suscon/4118NM.html

I thought I'd post up in case anyone else is ever doing a search for similar.

Would still be curious to learn what Mighty Mo did.

These were inexpensive and probably just about what I need so I'm crossing my fingers they'll do the trick.

Thanks again guys, and have a good day.

Roger
 

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Roger - let us know how you do with them. After I saw your posts, I thought about doing the same. Sent the link over to a friend of mine who's a total gearhead (with access to all the repair manuals and schematics of cars as well). According to him, those won't work in my Murano because I have the AWD system. Apparently, to install them, you need to remove the stock shock and coil spring. The Firestone goes in place of the stock shock. On the FWD its not an issue, because the structure is pretty straight forward (I can post the design schematic if you want). On the AWD, there's too much other stuff in the way.

As for towing generally, not a weekend or two (at most) goes by without me towing my aluminum bass boat to some local launch point on the nearby Potomac River or an inland lake about 90 miles away (via interstate). My 04 SE with AWD handles the 2,000 pounds (or less) of additional weight with ease. Braking distances are a tad longer, but I've had no problems with respect to towing issues. I'm now thinking of getting a bigger boat. I'd be comfortable with going right up to the rated tow limit by limiting the number of people and the load in the Murano (the tow rating is for a fully loaded car - i.e., four adults). I'll try to post a picture of my current rig when I get a chance.
 

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Roger - I take back what I said about the ability to install the Firestone air shocks with FWD vs. AWD. I rotated the tires on my Murano this weekend and saw that there is definitely room inside the springs for the air shocks.

That said - I go back to my original request that you let us know how installation goes. I'm very interested in doing something similar. Although MightMo's system looks easy to do, I'm simply not that trusting of what looks like a simple airbag. Perhaps MM can elaborate on the type of bags installed?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Hi,

Thanks MightMO and all,

Yes, I'll definitely post back what I find. I was concerned I'd have to take and evening off and borrow a friend's garage and lift (mine is too full of motorcycle stuff) If I can really just slip the airbags in between the spring coils, then I see this going a lot faster. Good, as I have a bunch of moto-tuning I'd rather spend my time on (though a relatively new racer, I've joined three different race bodies and am campaigning 4, soon to be 5, bikes -- run pretty much every weekend now)

Anyway, I'll post my feedback on the install, and maybe my new enclosed trailer (heat, AC, ramp, benches, cabinets, tie-down points etc - no more slumming it on a flatbed or in a tent)

If I pack very carefully, I'll be just within the prescribed towing limit.
A bit over if I were to pack a spare pitbike and/or mounted rain tires.

Thanks again. Can't wait to try the airbags. I'm getting my brake controller tomorrow. Hopefully the inverter generators later in the week. Coming along.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Oh yes,

What do we know aboaut load distributing hitches or at least some sort of anti-sway devices for the Murano?
 

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>What do we know aboaut load
>distributing hitches or at least some
>sort of anti-sway devices for the Murano?

Sorry, don't know much, never needed them. They say you should shoot for %10 tongue weight, but less is fine as long as the trailer doesn't wag. Mine was about 5200lbs, with about 450lb tongue weight, towed straight and true with never a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Interesting. I'll need to tow a bit more before I make a decision as to necessity. Still too new to this. On of my front tires just sustained a gash on thre sidewall, so I replaced both fronts with a set of the stock Goodyear LSs. Was going to replace the rears on next month's budget (should have about 50k on rear tires by then)
Should I be considering something other than those for higher capacity for my rear tires now. My trailer, though larger, is a tandem axle, which if loaded alright, should keep tongue weight in check.

Also, anyone bothering with a transmission cooler?
Know how they affect factory powertrain warranty,
or typical aftermarket warranties?
 

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MightyMo

All your energy really is inspiring. :)
 

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I think there is a load distributing hitch available.....at least I think I remember that.
Seems to me I remember they did that.
The problem, of course, is that load distributing hitches attach to the frame which distributes the load throughout the frame. There are some incredible forces at work here.
A load distribution hitch on a Ford P/U makes sense.
Putting a load distribution hitch on the Murano (which has no frame) doesn't.
But I still think somebody makes one..........attached to the Unibody?

Homer
 

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Uhhh.....I posted the link to a weight distribution hitch used on a Mo on page one of this thread......

As mentioned in that thread I posted the link to:
WD hitches are inserted at the draw bar recepticle on the hitch--not the frame. As I mentioned on the other thread, I was concerned about the forces leverage does impart on the hitch due to the Mo being unibody, but, I think it could be remedied by some 1/4 inch plate steel.
 

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I installed a weight-distributing hitch on my '95 Jeep Grand Cherokee and that is a unibody design similar to the MO. Jeep calls it Uni-Frame but it is technically a unibody structure. The Chrysler marketing guys figured Uni-Frame sounded more "Trail-Rated" than unibody. There was no body-on-frame structure typical of big SUVs and pick-ups.

The key to the weight-distributing hitch is having the fore and aft mounting points as far apart as possible. That is what gives you the necessary "leverage" when connected to the torsion links on the trailer.

-njjoe
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks all.
Working on getting all the cycle chocks in now so I can test weight distribution and tongue weight. Trying to optimize around existing cabinetry and optimal bike spaceing and flexibility. Then can install mounts for heavy items like generators and tool boxes to tweak that weight distribution. Will probably end up with at least some sort of antisway.

Thanks in advance
Roger
 
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