CSC Escapade Air Shocks Leak?

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  • #21
    Originally posted by Rocky View Post
    Hi Ray. just wanted to update you on my Shock conversion.

    I got rid of the problematic Air shocks and install a set of coil overs.

    and what make and model of shocks did you use, exactly?


    Comment: (For off-topic replies)

    • #22
      I called California Sidecar about the air shocks on my Escapade trailer failing to hold air AGAIN. They are "aware" of the air shock leaking issue, and they no longer offer the air shocks for sale, or the rebuild kits either.

      Ooooo-kaaaaayyyyy ... so then , since this HAS been an issue sice 2012 that *I* know of, when my used Escapade trailer's shocks failed, and California Sidecar express shipped a new set of shocks to me at some podunk motel in middle America, now THOSE shocks are also toast.

      So I called and they told me they are working with Progressive suspensions to get a replacement shock that is a double coil over shock that does not use air at all. Progressive missed an April delivery window (according to CA Sidecar) and they hope to have the new shocks in stock "in four to eight weeks."

      Ummm ... WHY wasn't this issue addressed A LONG TIME AGO? Everyone who owns these trailers LOVES them, but everyone also deals with the shocks inability to hold air pressure under a load. It would seem to me that a solution would have been found at least five years ago!

      So I went in search of a replacement shock myself. With the help of my good and knowledgeable friend Dave O'Conner, we hopped around all of the local auto parts stores in search of a solution that will get me on the road by Saturday morning at the LATEST.

      Dave made some calls while we pondered the situation inside, and he found a Monroe Air Shock that is a replacement, according to the 'best guess' on the specs. The compressed length and the extended lengh are slightly different, but I do not believe it will cause an issue. I ordered two of them. One will be here tomorrow morning from Nashville. The other (hopefully) will arrive around Noon from another location up north.

      I am going to mount these shocks on my Escapade and load it up to see how it rides. If these shocks WORK, I will share the part number and photos with y'all. (I live in Kentucky now!)

      I am growing weary of the constant delays. I am nearly a MONTH late in leaving for this tour!

      Comment: (For off-topic replies)

      • #23
        Originally posted by kentuckyrider View Post

        and what make and model of shocks did you use, exactly?


        Comment: (For off-topic replies)

        • #24
          Joe. I already posted my results that WORK.

          Where do you think CSC got the coil over shock idea from?

          You are wasting your time with air shocks.

          Air shocks use a T. The T equals Bad handling.
          There is nothing stopping the air from cycling from one shock to the other. (No resistance)
          So the tires rub against the body as it flops from side to side.

          Yes you can disconnect the T. By adding a single line to each shock.

          But who wants to check each shock on a trip when the trailer isn't handling on a trip?

          Even CSC recognized that, after so many customer complaints of the trailer body rolling left to right.

          CSC went as far as trying to add a sway bar to stop the roll. on the eclispe (that only has 3 CU ft more storage space than the escapade.

          Click image for larger version  Name:	Eclispe sway bar.JPG Views:	0 Size:	84.0 KB ID:	115118

          The problem is, The sway bar only masked the air shock problem. (just slowed the body roll down)

          Then I came along and redesigned my own suspension.

          Read my previous post.

          There was no way I was going to "Live" with this nonsense.

          I Built and tested my design with my trailer loaded with 354 pounds of dead weight.

          I repainted my chaffed wheels wells, So I could see if my now larger tires and wider wheels, touched the body anymore.?

          Not only did my trailer track better, But the Body roll was eliminated.
          Neither tire touched the body.

          I ran my trailer on HWY 52 near the landfill. (52 sits on a former landfill that has some mougles,so bad they will lift you out of your seat in a cage at speed)
          My trailer absorbed the impacts without the body bouncing around, like it did when I towed it home.

          When I sent all my information to CSC including pictures. They were very keen on my new shock design.
          So much so, they confessed there attempt to control the roll by adding the sway bar.
          Todd said they couldn't find a sway bar to fit the escapade, so they built a wider frame for the eclispe. (I thought that was a backassed approach to a handling problem- But its not my company)

          Todd (Lead engineer at CSC) Told me they were no longer going to install there sway bar on any trailer. After they saw the results of how well the coil over shocks performed on both of their body styles.
          Based on my own and there own testing , after Progressive built them a direct bolt in replacement set of coil over shocks.

          I was very disappointed in hearing that they'd be charging $177e. or $354 for a set.
          In my opinion is ridiculous to solve a design flaw that they didn't solve. (I did) again-its their business.

          I'm sharing my info here (with pictures) to help out other fellow Escapade owners.
          By replacing the defective air shocks, by replacing them with coil over shocks, for little effort for under $70.00

          ************************************************** *******
          You may not like the truth but that don't change it!

          When Life hands you a Curve - Lean into it!!.

          Comment: (For off-topic replies)

          • #25
            Rocky is spot on with his info........ After my flawless trip of just over 2,600 miles, I can attest to his shock conversion saving me an easy $250.00 compared to CSC's ridiculous new shock replacement price. I couldn't be happier.......

            Comment: (For off-topic replies)

            • #26
              Outstanding. One thing I do not see is where the upper shock yoke for the installation was procured. Where could a guy find them?
              My Escapade has leaked for a long time but just a slow leak so it needed to be pumped up every couple of days. I'd love to be able to install the coil overs.

              Comment: (For off-topic replies)

              • #27
                Here is the parts list, I am using. I wanted to find parts off the shelf, Not custom build them,so everyone could save as much money as I did!!

                The Shocks are rated for a 650 pound Harley without two people on board.(Trailer weighs 167 empty, with a 350 pound wt capacity)
                See my “after shock modifications” below for how the mods worked out..

                Parts needed.

                1. Pair of upper shock Clevis Mounts. (Instructions below on how I modified them)

                2. Emgo Custom Shorty Bobber Tracker Shocks- 17-05693B

                Hardware needed.
                2-3/8 x 2” Grade 8 Bolts. (These go through the clevic /shock on top)
                2-1/2 x 2” fine thread grade 8 bolts. (Through the Clevis to mount clevis to trailer body)
                4-1/2 ID x 1/64 steel washers. (For lower shock bolt)

                Removing the old air shocks.
                Inside the trailer.
                There are lines in the carpet that I cut a square U with a sharp utility knife, so I could see the Air Shock bolt.
                Remove the ¾ nut/washer/rubber bushing (You’ll reuse these later)
                Remove the 3/4 head ½ bolt from the bottom of the shock/swing arm. (You’ll reuse the bolt)

                Top of the Shock instructions.
                The clevis is made of Aluminum.
                I chose to Drill a pilot hole Through the threaded shank, all the way through the clevis. (Using it as a pilot hole)
                Then I cut the shank off flush with the top of the clevis.
                I then drilled the hole out to ½ so the new grade 8 bolt would fit through. (I wanted a stronger bolt to hold the clevis to the body)

                You’ll need to shave the steel upper Shock sleeve eyelet, (its slightly wider than than the Clevis ID) so it fits into the center of the clevis, allowing it to move freely. I ground a tad off each side on my bench grinder. (Less that a .064)
                You’ll need to use a flat file in the bottom of the clevis U. or the 1/2 bolt will not sit flat.
                You’ll need to buy a thin head or grind down the 1/2 bolt head.
                The reason why is- the head is to thick to get the top bolt through the clevis & shock eyelet. (see attached pic)

                Bottom of the shock instructions
                You’ll need to ream/drill out the 10mm steel sleeve to 1/2. (to except the original bolt)
                You’ll add 1 1/2 washer to the original bolt, then another washer to the other side of the shock, (before threading the bolt into the swing arm).
                Reaming out the Sleeve to 1/2 still leaves enough material.
                The Sleeve is just a barrier between the Bolt and the Shocks Rubber bushing.
                The Bushing is the cushion.
                The Bolt actually carries the Shock Load.
                See the attached pictures.

                After Clevis Modifications.
                You reuse the 2 flat steel washers/top nut, and 1 rubber bushing.(That is on the inside of the air shock mount)
                Place one washer on the new bolt coming through the clevis.
                Then insert the shock/clevis/bolt/washer through the trailer mounting hole.
                The place the rubber bushing you took off the air shock, on the new clevis bolt.
                Then the other flat washer and the Ny-lock nut (that was on the air shock).

                After shock modifications.
                I repainted my wheel wells,(Tires had been rubbing with the air shocks-Common problem with this trailer)
                I loaded 354 pounds in my trailer taking it over some bumpy roads.(I wanted to be sure my tires wouldn’t rub the body anymore)
                I then pulled my wheels off to see if the tries rubbed anywhere? (The wheel wells were mint-no more tire rubbing like with the air shocks)
                These new shock gives you about a 1 ¾ more inch of height from the top of the tire to the top of the wheel well.

                I also converted my 4 lug to 5 lug Hubs so I could put taller/wider Radial tires and 4 ½ wheels on my trailer for added safety
                Yet my taller tires never touched the body!

                The Coil over shock have 5 adjustments on them.
                For my testing I left the shocks on the lowest setting (to see if the tires would touch the body?)
                With 354 pounds of dead weight in the trailer and what I put it through. (I wanted to be sure these shocks could handle twice the load I’d ever carry)

                I can say these shock’s were the right choice
                Seeing personally I’ll only ever carry less than 125-150 pounds of weight when I travel.
                But it is nice to have the 5 adjustment options in case I ever need to carry, say concrete?? LOL
                ************************************************** *******
                You may not like the truth but that don't change it!

                When Life hands you a Curve - Lean into it!!.

                Comment: (For off-topic replies)

                • #28

                  Clevis as I bought them with new bolts in this picture.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Clevis after threaded shank removed, and Pilot hole drilled through the shank before I cut the shank off.
                  Pilot hole is then drilled out to 1/2 for new bolt.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  New grade 8 bolt inserted into modified Clevis. (Squared corners of the ID of the clevis)
                  You'll be re-using the OEM rubber washer/Steel washer/ny-lock nut.
                  to secure the new grade 8 bolt to the body.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  New bolt after Head was shaved & Shock eyelet sleeve,narrowed to slip easily into the clevis.
                  Allowing free movement of the shock, to articulate,
                  With the swing arm,when the shock absorbs bumps on the road .

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Top of new shock mounted inside trailer body.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Bottom Shock eyelet with 1/2 washer on each side of eyelet. (After enlarging the sleeve from 10mm to 1/2")
                  So the OEM bolt could be re-used without bottoming out in the swing arm.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Old 416 air shock, vs new shock installed in the body.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  ************************************************** *******
                  You may not like the truth but that don't change it!

                  When Life hands you a Curve - Lean into it!!.

                  Comment: (For off-topic replies)

                  • msw0941
                    msw0941 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I'm new to the site, found this while doing research for my escapade trailer, same problem, same frustrations with CSC. First, thanks Rocky, you are an answer to a prayer. I have ordered the parts from your post and will attempt to repair mine after I get back from Alaska. Mine just leans a little but still handles fine and has little weight in it for the trip.

                  • Rocky
                    Rocky commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Glad to help.You'll love the new problem free set up.

                    And Thank you Sir.

                • #29
                  Outstanding write up and pictures of the job. Tip of the hat to you Rocky. You never cease to impress.

                  Comment: (For off-topic replies)

                  • Rocky
                    Rocky commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thank you for the kind words.
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