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61  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Pin hole in the Sani Con hose on: November 01, 2013, 02:40:02 pm
Working off Sparky's comments, I think I have a solution.  I found the hole was about 1/2" from where the hose attaches to the pump.  I cut the hose just beyond the hole.  I still wanted to use the connector on the end so I pulled on the hose metal reinforcement and yanked it out of the connector leaving the remains of the hose.  Next I took a razor blade and reamed out the rest of the hose.  Then I pushed the good section of the hose back in and snugged it down with a hose clamp and reinstalled on the PC.  I'll thoroughly test it tonight and see if it holds up.  I certainly don't want it to come apart while pumping poo poo.

If you use a pvc pipe, you will probably need to go from the 1" nominal diameter to 3/4" to get the hose to go over the pipe.  I have every size around the house but 3/4".

PC uses sheet metal screws to hold the gasket where the hose runs through the fiberglass and they do have sharp pointy ends.  However, the hose shouldn't ever come in contact with the screws if care is taken during installation. 

The hose failure appears to be a manufacturing defect.  Mark
62  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: PC 2350 Fuel Mileage on: November 01, 2013, 08:36:45 am
I've put about 3000 miles on our 2552 and the mileage ranges from about 7.8 to 9.5.  In stop and go driving, it's much worse.  It seems that once you get over 55, the gas mileage drops very, very quickly.  However, going 50 to 55, we never seem to get to where we are going.  I usually cruise between 62 and 65 mph.  According to the scan gauge, I get about 18-20 mpg going downhill and about 5 to 6 going uphill.  I'm trying to figure out how to arrange our trips so we are always going downhill.  Mark
63  Main Forum / General Discussion / Pin hole in the Sani Con hose on: October 27, 2013, 02:51:11 pm
Right where the sani con hose comes out of the pump and makes a 180 degree turn and goes into the sani con housing where the rest of the hose is stored, I have a very small pin hole leak that sprays yuck a surprisingly long way.  There is quite a bit of pressure on that hose.  Has anyone tried to patch one of these hoses?  I'm sure it would have to patched from the inside.  I guess sani con would be the contact for a replacement hose?  I thought about shortening the hose by about 4-6" to get passed the leak, but I'm not sure how the hose is connected to the fitting.  Thanks, Mark
64  Main Forum / General Discussion / Broken latch-Where to buy on: October 27, 2013, 02:44:34 pm
I somehow broke a latch on one of the doors above the passenger seat.  I have 2 types in the RV:  One is a pinch style and the other is a rotating clip.  I broke the one with a clip.  Can I buy these at a hardware store or do I need to order it from PC?  Thanks, Mark
65  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Drilling into the closet on: October 27, 2013, 02:40:31 pm
Thanks for the tips!  I got the shelves in.  It ain't pretty (luckily it's behind a door), but they survived our first trip and the shelves are worth their weight in gold.  Mark
66  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Drive line vibration diagnosis on: October 27, 2013, 10:54:52 am
Update:  From annoying to downright bad.  I took the PC in on Monday and told the mechanic I needed it back for a weekend trip by Thursday.  No problem.  Well, nothing is e z.  On Wed. afternoon I called and he said he was done but it needed some tweaking.  I asked if he could get the tweaking done by Thursday noon and he said that would be plenty of time.  I called Thursday at noon and he said he wasn't finished but come and get it.  Not finished, why?  Well, it seems this is an unruly beast that doesn't conform to normal driveline criteria.  The Ford driveline was designed to angle down from the transmission and up from the axle.  This driveline angles down, then up, and then down.  He told me to take it on my trip and he would resume work next week.  He had calls into his folks to find a fix and he would have the answers next week. 

We took the PC on a 280 mile RT and it was quite a bit worse than when I took it in.  Markedly worse.  The vibration now starts at 35mph and gets terrible at 45 and then 'drones' out at 55 and then from there is about the same as it was before. 

Here is what he did:  The mechanic balanced each shaft and as Kermit thought, the back Ford shaft was the worst, but I noticed new weights welded on all three shafts when I crawled under there.  Then he balanced the first two shafts together and the rear two shafts together.  They were balanced at 2250 rpm which is my 'sweet spot' of 62 mph where I get decent (a relative term) gas mileage and still eventually get to where I'm going.  He replaced the u joints with 'lifetime' lubrication (without asking me.  Hmmm.) claiming otherwise the bearings would never get lubricated due to oversight.  He counterpoised the high spots with the low spots on the front and rear to smooth out the driveline.  He measured the angles at each coupler and next used shims to tweak the smoothest (or in my case the least roughest) rotation.

The offset angle the Ford guy warned me about is normal according to this guy because Ford offsets the driveline in the event of a rear end crash that reached the axle, the driveline will push out at this point preventing transmission and engine damage.  However, this really isn't an issue in an RV due to the overhang.

Next step:  The mechanic is ordering an extension for his balancing machine so he can put the entire shaft (I think he said 118") on it and spin the whole thing.  He will consult with driveline suppliers and give them the lengths/angles and get their input.  I called Kermit (he is in Atlanta?) to get his input.  The mechanic is leaning towards an e z but expensive fix of replacing the rear 2 shafts with a single piece 5" aluminum shaft (The stock is 3" steel [or did he say 3 1/2"?] which he thinks is marginal for the load).  With two pieces, the angles will be 'normal' and you remove a variable (coupler) from the mix.  Mark

67  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Question on propane furnace on: October 27, 2013, 10:26:50 am
We traveled to an agility trial in the metropolis of Fern Mississippi this weekend (population 6 maybe?).  We stayed at the trial arena that provided power and water hookups.  The forecast was a low of 42 and winds gusting to 15-20.  I bought an oscillating Lasko heater from Walmart (about $50) b/f we left based on recommendations from other rv forums.  It even has a remote, but I learned too late that the remote doesn't come with batteries!  Anyway we set it at 64 degrees at night and it did a nice job of warming about half of the 2552.  We had a north wind and were parked facing north.  I had the passenger seat turned around and was sitting in it and noticed I kept getting a draft hitting my right shoulder.  I checked to see if the windows were open (they weren't) and discovered the ventilation controls were set on vent and the cold air was blowing in through the dash vents!  I closed them and we were fine.
68  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Drive line vibration diagnosis on: October 22, 2013, 04:19:29 pm
Warning:  long post.  Read last paragraph if you are in a hurry.

Captain's log:  Stardate 10/22/13.  Work continues on fixing the vibration.  I drove the RV home after the Ford dealership diagnosed an out of line drive system and they attempted a repair by shimming the 2nd coupler 3 shims towards the ground.  I couldn't feel any improvement, but wasn't any worse.

I contacted Earl and sent him the thoughts of the Ford folks and pictures of the driveline taken by the Ford service manager.  Earl replied stating he forwarded my email to Kermit.  Kermit emailed me a couple of days later and said he couldn't find me in the warranty system.  I emailed back and said I wasn't filing a warranty claim and it was known to me before I purchased the rv that the warranty didn't transfer.  I was simply looking for information on whether the Ford service manager was right and how to fix my rv. 

Kermit called me 2 days later and said he disagreed with the service manager.  The driveline is offset by design towards the passenger side because the engine is offset towards the passenger side and so is the rear axle.  Kermit thought the problem was likely an unbalanced driveshaft and he suspected the rear driveshaft because that is where he had experienced problems in the past.  According to Kermit, before the chassis is extended, the driveshaft may not be "in spec" but it's not a problem until the chassis is extended.  Once extended, little problems are magnified.  He said the company doing the extension has years of experience and has their part of the extension perfected.  They rarely make mistakes.  The extender uses the Ford driveshafts and add one for the length of the extended chassis.  He recommended finding a driveline balancing company and see if they could find the problem and suggest they start with the rear shaft.

I located a driveline balancing company in the next town and took the rv to him yesterday.  The owner's credentials are 17 yrs of driveline experience working for Ford dealerships in the area.  He claims to be a Ford's master driveline technician, the highest level that Ford certifies.  He seems to know his stuff.  He hooked up his analysis equipment and found a driveshaft vibration.  However, he doesn't know which shaft is out of balance.  The shaft coming out of the tranny is an aftermarket shaft and the rest of the line is Ford (actually Spicer, a supplier to Ford). 

He asked if it was possible the driveline was under warranty by PC or Ford.  I know PC won't cover it, but I called the Ford guy and asked him.  His response was maybe.  His concern about a warranty claim was Ford would want to know if the driveline was balanced as a whole or by its individual parts and was the extender certified by Ford to be covered under the Ford family umbrella.   The deal about balancing by part is that Ford balances the entire unit and the splines must match exactly or you can get an out of balance driveline.  Care must be taken to line everything up just the way Ford tested it or Ford wouldn't warrant it.  And even if it is out of balance, Ford may balk paying a claim anyway if the extender isn't certified, Ford doesn't pull the shaft out and verify it, blah blah blah.  He said he sees a lot of finger pointing between Ford and RV manufacturers and the customer is usually the one that ends up paying.  This is the fourth time I've had it in a shop for fixing and I'm growing weary.  So I called the driveline guy back and said just fix it. 

I asked him how he was going to approach balancing the system.  This is my understanding:  He will pull the 3 section shaft and spin each part and correct any balance issue with the 3 shafts.  Then he will connect the first two and balance them together (messing with spline alignment) and get it as good as he can noting any 'high' spot.  Then he will do the same on the rear two noting any 'low' spot.  Finally he will put it back together with the high spot on the 1 and 2 matching the low spot on 2 and 3.  Then he will test drive it and it should be fixed.  I can only hope!  Sorry for the very long post.  Mark

69  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Drilling into the closet on: October 21, 2013, 10:15:47 am
Great idea, thanks!  Putting shelves in these closets is testing my limited carpentry skills.  Almost everything curves and curves at different rates.
70  Main Forum / General Discussion / Drilling into the closet on: October 19, 2013, 08:41:16 pm
I am putting some shelves in the closet.  Does anyone know how thick the closet wall is and how far I can put a screw in until I punch a hole in the outside skin?  Thanks, Mark
71  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Drive line vibration diagnosis on: October 16, 2013, 01:48:00 pm
John, the vibration I am experiencing starts at about 58 and is worse at 60 to 62 and then it subsides by 65 mph.  I can both hear it and feel it.  I spoke with the previous owner and he never mentioned the vibration, so either it didn't bother him, he thought it was normal, or he never drove at these speeds.   

The service manager said this vibration was consistent with an out of line driveline (ramp up and then down).  He also said if the vibration starts and got worse as speed increased and never got better, it was most likely an out of balance driveline.  He said you can often see an out of balance driveline if you put the truck on a rack and lift the tires and run it.  You can see an obvious flutter. 

I traded emails with Kermit and I'm awaiting his response as to whether he disagrees with the service manager's assessment (maybe all PC's drivelines are off center for a reason) or if he agrees.  If he agrees, then what is the best fix? Mark
72  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: I killed my carburetor on the Onan Generator on: October 16, 2013, 01:33:06 pm
I took my atv in last year because it would barely start and wouldn't idle.  I took the carb off and cleaned out all the ports I could get to with carb cleaner.  It still didn't work so I took it to a motorcycle dealer.  The service guy told me they soak the carb for 2 days to dissolve the deposits.  It worked when I got it back.  I wonder what they use to dissolve the varnish.  I've also had the same problem with other small engines.  I always put stabil in my gas cans and sometimes still have issues.  I can believe your mechanic although I'm not sure a whole new carb was necessary.  And simply turning off the gas and waiting for the gas to burn up isn't effective because the carb float bowl doesn't always completely empty before starving the engine for fuel.
73  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Drive line vibration diagnosis on: October 14, 2013, 10:51:04 pm
PC outsources the bodies to be lengthened or at least I think they do.  When this body was lengthened a 4' driveshaft extension was added and a coupler was added to support the new shaft.  As you can see in the first picture, it appears the new bracket was welded in off center.  This bracket was added aftermarket so it's not a Ford problem.  There might be something I and the service manager may not know.  I sent an email to Earl and he has forwarded it to Kermit.  Let's see if this was intentional or a mistake.  Mark
74  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Drive line vibration diagnosis on: October 14, 2013, 05:52:20 pm
Here are the pictures the service manager sent me looking fore and aft.  There does appear to be a definite cast to starboard.


75  Main Forum / General Discussion / Drive line vibration diagnosis on: October 14, 2013, 05:38:05 pm
OK, it's taken a while to get my 58-62mph vibration issue diagnosed.  To recap:  The first try was to get all 6 tires balanced.  The improvement was slim although the tire company told me all 6 tires were out of balance (cost $15/tire)  I took it back to the tire company to see if this was the best they could do and took a run with a mechanic.  He diagnosed it as a suspected driveline issue not the tires.  The recommendation was to take it to Ford and try to get it fixed under warranty.  If that didn't work, bring it back and they would locate the vibration with a sensor machine. 

I finally got it into the Ford dealership and they drove it and rebalanced and indexed the tires and told me it was fixed (cost $0).  I picked it up and drove it to the nearest highway and it rode smoother due to a little better balance job, but the vibration was still there.  I drove back to the Ford dealership and complained and a service manager agreed to take a ride with me.  Once I got the PC up to 60 mph, he heard/felt the vibration right away and he tried to locate it.  He said it was worse behind the transmission.  He asked me to leave it until he could look at it on a rack.  They only have one truck rack and it was in use so it sat a few days. 

Today he called and said it was as fixed as good as he could get it.  The problem, according to him, is the driveline is not straight because the factory added coupler is off center by 1/2".  The added coupler is about 1/2" off center towards the passenger side and this is causing my problem.   I asked if he could just slide the coupler 1/2" towards the center of the vehicle and he said, no, the adjustment on this particular bracket is fore and aft, not sideways.  I asked if he could grind the bracket holes out so the coupler could be slid to the center and he said no, there is only about 3/8" of metal on the edge of the existing hole and there is no room to grind.  He thinks the only way to fix it properly is to cut the welded bracket off and then weld it back in the right place.

He attempted to fix the problem by shimming the coupler down.  He tried 5 shims and it got best at 3 shims and then got much worse by 5 shims.  He went back to 3 shims.  He thinks it's about 50% better (Cost $0, thank you very, very much).

He also said an out of line driveline is consistent with the vibration ramping up and then ramping down as speed increases.  If the shaft was out of balance, he said it would ramp up and up and keep getting worse as speed increased.

He doesn't have the equipment to fix it and recommended I take back to the factory if I can't live with it.  Since I bought it used, I don't have a warranty and it's a 2500 mile roundtrip so that solution is out of the question.  His second recommendation was to take it to someplace like camper's world and see if they could tackle it.   He is going to send me pictures and if it shows the problem, I'll post them up here.  I'll also contact Earl and see if he has any pearls of wisdom.  Mark
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