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 > Terrible turning of Ford E450 202” WB

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The Other California

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Posted: 04/04/19 10:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

SFVdave wrote:

My 2016 ClassC on the Ford E450 chassis has a 202” wheelbase and the turning is terrible. The steering just doesn’t turn enough. I have seen ClassA MHs make turns much sharper than I can. Even my old 2004 ClassC Winnebago E350 with a 132” wheel base turned much sharper. This 202” WB makes driving much different. I have to turn the wheel much more and corrections that longer to have an effect. I don’t suppose there is anything that can be done to correct this.

Of course the main cause of your too-large turning radius is that 202" WB.

That's one of the many reasons that we bought a small Class C - it's E450 158" WB makes for a turning radius that's quite usable. We can almost make a U-turn with our 24 footer on a residential street.

I really wonder how a 202' WB Sprinter chassis would do with respect to turning radius as compared to the Ford E450 chassis?

Phil, 2005 E450 Itasca Spirit 24V


Corvallis, OR

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Posted: 04/05/19 06:26am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

pnichols wrote:

I really wonder how a 202' WB Sprinter chassis would do with respect to turning radius as compared to the Ford E450 chassis?

The Sprinter 144 and E-series 138 wheelbases have the same 48' wall to wall turning circle. So the Sprinter has a slightly sharper wheel cut. Maybe. Being that close, it could also jsut be due to scrub radius of the tires since the E-series negative offset wheels, or the Ford steering being less-than-Ackerman at longer wheelbases. It's a moot point however, since the Sprinter max wheelbase is 170" and cannot be altered (which I'm sure you know, just pointing it out in case somebody else wasn't aware)


2000 Ford E450 V10 VAN! 450,000+ miles
2014 ORV really big trailer
2015 Ford Focus ST


Nazareth, PA

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Posted: 04/05/19 07:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Desert Captain wrote:

I have to ask... doesn't anyone do a test drive before buying a motorhome? This forum is continually inundated with complaints about the ride and handling of the posters motorhome. If you do a thorough test drive and it rides and/or handles poorly, why do people still buy it? [emoticon]

Clearly, it is not going to get better all by itself, right? If you buy a coach that has issues and you are prepared to deal with them I get that. {My dad used to say that any problem that can be solved by money is not a problem... "If you have the money".} [emoticon]

There are lots of aftermarket goodies that purport to cure all of the ride and handling issues we so frequently see here in the complaint posts. All it takes is time and money thrown at the problem and you can probably find "some" improvement... but why go there in the first place?

I wonder how many folks would go to a high dollar SUV dealer {Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, Land Rover etc.} and plop down something well north of $100,000 only to discover that it rides and drives like a pig on roller skates. The salesman says "no problem" just get it aligned and spend another 2, 3 or 4 thousand dollars on aftermarket add ons and it will be fine {maybe}. [emoticon]
{Hint, this is where: "Run Forrest run" becomes pretty good advice.}

I'm guessing not many if any would be so foolish but when it comes to buying motorhomes obviously lots of people do exactly that. IMHO: Any decent motorhome should ride, drive and handle well right off of the showroom floor without the need for any aftermarket modifications.
If it doesn't then it is the wrong motorhome.

Keep shopping folks, there are lots of fine quality coaches out there. Rant off for now...
But I'm still waiting to hear why this is so prevalent {but it won't keep me awake tonight}.


EXACTLY! Well said! [emoticon]


2003 Gulf Stream Ultra Supreme 33'
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Baraboo, WI

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Posted: 04/05/19 08:07am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You bought a school bus with a camper body on it. What did you expect? I bought a F150 supercrew long bed. I test drove it and discovered right there that I would deal with the wide turns needed with the long wheelbase.
A good extensive test drive should have been taken before handing over the cash.

Bob & Dawn Married 31 years
2017 Viking 17RD
2011 Ford F150 3.5L Ecoboost 420 lb/ft


Eugene, OR

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Posted: 04/05/19 09:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My only steering complaint with my 32 footer is the amount of effort to turn the wheel. I was used to my old 158 inch wheelbase and the power steering was so much easier. I just attribute it to the much greater weight.

Retired Anesthetist. LTP. Pilot with mechanic/inspection ratings. 2017 Jayco Greyhawk 31FS. Wife and daughter. Three cats which we must obey.


North-East Illinois

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Posted: 04/05/19 08:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Our E350 with the Ford standard (unmodified) 158" wheel base, and the over-all rig being 23'-8".

Ah yes, those "U" turns while towing a Jeep Liberty as shown in my signature, can make me nervous. I pull off on the right shoulder, stop the vehicle, cut the wheel all the way left til it stops, then start rolling and I just make it. "Whew that was close".

2007 Phoenix Cruiser model 2350, with 2006 Jeep Liberty in-tow



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Posted: 04/05/19 09:26pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Seems appropriate here...Give me forty acres and I'll turn this rig around


Southern California

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Posted: 04/06/19 07:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yes we did test drive it and I noticed the poor turning, but we test drove many MHs and I was more concerned about the freeway ride. That was OK until loaded. WE liked the MH because it had almost everything we wanted at a reaasonable price and dealer location was fairly close.
Yesterday, I met a buddy at another local dealer and the salesman said the Ford E series has a 38? turn compared to their Class A's that have 50?. Plus the longer 202" wheel base adds to the issue.


Kenmore, WA

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Posted: 04/08/19 09:49pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Go to an RV dealer and test drive some 40 foot diesel pushers. You 202 inch wheel base will look better when you're done.

2002 Winnebago Minnie


Fort Worth, TX

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Posted: 04/11/19 07:14am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Through to the end of their lives, most folks follow the front wheels around.

But every vehicle out there PIVOTS off of the rear axle. Knowing where to place the rear axle as a turn commences, is the trick

The Steer Axle follows the path laid out by the Drive Axle. It can’t be otherwise.

What makes a C cumbersome is the rear overhang. Exaggerates every improper angle.

Were I instructing I’d tell the driver to go farther into the intersection to “feel” where is the Drive Axle and THEN commence with cranking the wheel over. It’s what we do with big trucks.

Think of the turn as being in two parts. Place the Drive Axle. And then it’s a separate operation to use the wheel cut to bring it around.

One goes significantly farther into the intersection, first. There’s no diagonal across it.

And one moves a good deal more slowly than with a personal vehicle. Too hard on the tires otherwise. Five-mph under the posted ramp speed (clear weather minimum)

To put it all in perspective: the hilarious insistence of having to have a higher injury risk pickup versus a family vehicle to pull a travel trailer. It has the same roots: a vehicle being operated abnormally which is driver-only. Better would be to LEARN: load that personal vehicle to maximum and drive it that way 13-weeks. With an emphasis on lowest wear. Sure won’t be whipping it around like you do today.

Today’s drivers haven’t a clue that they must PILOT the vehicle. It has its needs. Try to respect them.

Brains, not feelz. How long do tires and brakes last on your personal vehicle? Less than 70k? Rotation required due to wear on front set? These are indicative of insufficient driving skill. Braking into turns (too fast for conditions)? Etc.

A box truck is the least “fun” vehicle to drive. Funny as hell to me to see a Moho with a towed. Two drivetrains is double the headaches. And having to unhitch to park is a problem I wouldn’t want. All for a vehicle with interior space compromised and badly utilized.

My pickup is 163”. The Pete is 265”. Neither is a ballerina. But both are easier to drive (hitched to their trailers — former at 63’ long, latter at 72’ long) than a Moho of any significant size. Not until you hit the top (Newell) are they ever “fast” in pro hands.

And I can do maneuvers with my TT hitched — all day — that’ll put most Moho + towed into the ditch.

Take your time, OP, and cut the slices thinner. Each maneuver has more parts to it than it than you thought.

The trip just takes what it takes. You either like this problem-solving or not.

You want a 100-mph RV hotrod, then a 27’ Airstream behind a Porsche Cayenne Turbo will suit.

* This post was edited 04/11/19 07:31am by Slowmover *

1990 35' SILVER STREAK Sterling, 9k GVWR
2004 DODGE RAM 2WD 305/555 ISB, QC SRW LB NV-5600, 9k GVWR
Hensley Arrow; 11-cpm solo, 17-cpm towing fuel cost

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