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Old 03-16-2018, 10:49 AM   #589
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Thanks for all the help and advice on my queries. AS Las Vegas says I can put the 16" tires on, but rather than risk too close a clearance with the 16" I may stick with the 15" and do the lift, doing the lift in any case. Thanks so much for this thread in general, I have learned a tremendous amount, it has been very helpful!
Mary
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Old 03-16-2018, 10:56 AM   #590
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Switz - I got schooled on that axle thing. The tanks are lower than the axle, so lifting the tanks is of value. Is that the case on the D? Pat
Hey Pat, please excuse my ignorance on this issue, but when you say schooled on the axle thing, and lifting the tanks...doesn't lifting the axles, raise the tanks? And doesn't using bigger wheels do the same?

That is my whole reason for making these modifications, looking for clearance. Appreciate your insights.

Thanks,
Mary
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Old 03-16-2018, 11:37 AM   #591
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Mary - the lift kits do not raise the axle tube. The kits are a spacer between the axles and the coach frame. That lifts the coach. Because the tanks hang lower than the axle in stock configuration, the lift has a positive effect with respect to clearance.

However, a raised center of gravity negatively impacts stability. You do not see GM racing raised Corvettes. That is not to say that the CG on a lifted coach could not be maintained at the stock position by loading all gear and provisions low in the coach. More likely, the solution is to slow down. You are not going to tow off road at high speed so it is only on the highway that is of concern. A lifted AS is still more stable than most other coaches.

The 16" tires are a modification that may require some body work or a lift of more than what is standard. Believe one owner made his own parts to get a higher lift and may have accomodated the 16s. Do a search in the blue box on lifts if you have not done so yet. The 15" tires help and are a bolt on. Even with the 10% reduction in weight capacity required in derating passenger car tires, the extra load (XL) tires have significant capacity for the 23s.

Hope that helps - we are not lifted as we don't go off-road, but we have the 15s with centramatics and are very happy.

Travel safe. We want to see your smile down the road. Pat
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Old 03-17-2018, 10:32 AM   #592
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As I remember sitting at home so I could be wrong, the tanks are all inside the bottom skin of the trailer so they can be "heated" by the 1.5" flex hose stuffed from the main hot air duct into the floor void. The low point of the 23D is the black plumbing connections behind the street side rear wheel. That setup is like the male lion's "equipment" being completely exposed in a cat fight.

So the only way to increase ground clearance to go off road is larger tires as the bottom of the axles are the lowest substantial part of the trailer to get stuck on a stump in the road. Only adding risers to the frame elevates the plumbing but not the ground clearance of the axles (referring primarily to the stock 14" tires & wheels of pre 2017 models).

As an aside, the 15" Michelin LTX (P) 235/75R15 XL tires we used are 28.9" in diameter and the 16" Michelin LT225/75R16/E LTX M/S2 tires we used on the Classic are 29.2" in diameter. Thus the net axle height increase to go to 16" tires and wheels from 15" tires and wheel would be less that ľ" for a stiffer ride and more expensive tire.

We had to make a custom tire carrier for the 23D as 15" Michelins would NOT fit in the stock carrier designed for 14" tires. The Classic tire carrier designed for 15" tires required a brief application of a Crescent wrench to expand the arms slightly outward so the 16" tires would fit. Having a slightly wider tire cross section, the 16" tires make getting the tire carrier catch in place more challenging, but is doable even if one is not Charles Atlas, the weight lifter.
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Old 03-17-2018, 12:15 PM   #593
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Switz - see attached photo. Fresh water tank on the 23FB is visible. Maybe the D is configured in a different way. Would appreciate you checking on the next coach visit. It is an interesting discussion and worth expanding. Can't believe that AS has not addressed the problem of low hanging sewer dump valves with all the years they have built the coaches. A location close to axles with rigid skid pans seems possible. Might be good for the tanks too. The designers of the flexi-frame has a lot for which they should answer. Pat
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Old 03-17-2018, 07:57 PM   #594
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Good luck with the new thread! When we were looking for an Airstream, the 23FB was high on the list, but the FC20 won out for its great corner galley and smaller size.

A great unit nonetheless.

Happy Trails.

Peter
Hi Peter. We are also looking between the FC 23FB and the FC20. Both are excellent for us. We do not want to drive a pick-up so do you think a Grand Cherokee is adequate?
Do you use hitch bars for your 20?
Thanks
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Old 03-17-2018, 09:31 PM   #595
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-- snip -- We do not want to drive a pick-up so do you think a Grand Cherokee is adequate? -- snip --
AW tows a 23 Safari with a Grand Cherokee. It was for sale, FYI. Pat
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Old 03-17-2018, 11:44 PM   #596
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Switz and Pat,
Thanks so much for your replies. I also checked out the tire thread, and talked to some service people about tires. FINALLY beginning to get the full picture. My main clearance issue has been the black water dump lines. The actual axles not so much, I don't go that far off road. Thinking I may do more research into the Michelin's and probably stay with the 15's. The lift should take care of the height clearance, and as you pointed out above and earlier too Switz, thank you, the gain in diameter is minimal, and the stiffer ride may offset whatever good that minimal clearance would give me. These are the times I really wish I was an engineer, and could come up with a design solution that would just lift that dump valve, or attach a closing valve directly to the tank and then put the hose there. It would be a little awkward hooking up, for sure, but waaaay better than knocking that thing off...again!

Hope to see you on the trails this year. Mary
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Old 03-18-2018, 08:56 AM   #597
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Hi Peter. We are also looking between the FC 23FB and the FC20. Both are excellent for us. We do not want to drive a pick-up so do you think a Grand Cherokee is adequate?

Do you use hitch bars for your 20?

Thanks

Bruce


I used to tow a 23D with a 2014 JGC. It towed fine. Going up steep terrain (I.e. Rocky Mountains in Colorado), the engine revs high to keep speed, like 4-5000 rpm at times, but well within the operating parameters. Never overheated or got too warm. I did have the tow package with the Jeep.

The main issues for me was with a family of 6, or usually 5 camping, with two dogs and the trailer tongue wait, I was easily maxed out on my payload. The JGC I had was summit, so it was only 1050 pounds. The trailer tongue was 640 pounds after removing batteries from the tongue and going with lithium in the coach. No room to carry any gear in the Jeep. So check payload.

If payload isnít an issue for you, and you donít mind the engine revving a bit on steep inclines, the JGC is a good tow vehicle.

I now have a F150 with about a 1900 lb payload.
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Old 03-18-2018, 11:46 AM   #598
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During the temporary marriage of Mercedes and Dodge and Jeep, the Mercedes 3.0L V6 turbo charged diesel was also installed in a Jeep station wagon similar to my 2007 Mercedes ML320 CDI. One of those Jeeps would tow the 23D well, just as my car does a good job at 55 mph and about 16.5 mpg towing the trailer vs 28.5 highway not towing. The ML is all wheel drive, so there is no slipage when in the grass. The ML scales just over 6,000 pounds when connected and loaded for camping so it is slightly heavier than the 23D which is good for towing.
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Old 03-19-2018, 05:20 PM   #599
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Has anyone tried rotating the table by unbolting and reinstalling 45% so that it slides long ways to the window?


Done that and works great with a box on the seat to support the cantilever at the window. The box provides more storage and my belly fits perfectly with more space.
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Old 03-20-2018, 06:47 PM   #600
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New to forum but, long time stalker. Just traded our 25fb for 23fb..... and Ford Raptor to Chevy z71 4x4... would love a good recommendation for a quiet sway/ load level system. Btw the z71 handles great up to 60 mph with no medium.
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Old 03-20-2018, 06:48 PM   #601
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New to forum but, long time stalker. Just traded our 25fb for 23fb..... and Ford Raptor to Chevy z71 4x4... would love a good recommendation for a quiet sway/ load level system. Btw the z71 handles great up to 60 mph with no medium.


Colorado z71
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Old 03-20-2018, 07:35 PM   #602
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A recent discussion with a Bambi owner identified that rebuilt Hensley Cubs are available. That reduces cost a bit, so worth a check. Pat
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