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Old 07-08-2014, 08:39 PM   #1
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6,484 Mile 'Shakedown' Complete

We just got home from our trip...San Diego to the south tip of texas, to North Carolina and back to San Diego. Had an absolute blast although will not do that much driving again. Stayed in RV Parks, State Parks, with Family and at a few hotels.

Had just 299 miles on our new Interstate. Just enough time for me to try out and get somewhat familiar with everything. First of all, these Mercedes Sprinter Vans are beasts and will go, go go. 75 miles an hour all day is not a problem.

We had one issue with the Sprinter and one issue with the Airstream.

1) Brake Wear Visit Workshop warning came up at 1500 miles. I ignored it for a long time (2000 miles) and just kept clearing the message, figuring it was probably a bad sensor which it turned out to be. Stopped in to the Raleigh North Carolina Mercedes dealer (Leith Inc.) and they replaced the sensor in a couple hours without an appointment. Excellent company from my experience.

2) After about 5,000 miles and driving in strong winds in Texas on the way home, the awning / step sensor started beeping. After cycling the awning in and out several times and ensuring that it was closed and checking the step out, just pulled the sensor. Removed the little cubbie by the sliding door footwell and unplugged the sensor. Beeping stopped, will investigate further but may just leave it unplugged. Just make sure you have a stubby phillips screwdriver in case this happens to you.
There was one other issue, a nagging slow leakdown of the curbside / inside rear tire. This was actually the biggest pain of all but at least I caught it and stayed on top of it.

So 12 States, numerous National Parks, Battlefields and Museums and 6484 miles later we are Definitely happy with our Airstream Interstate.
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Old 07-08-2014, 09:20 PM   #2
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Congrats! That was quite a first shakedown run
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Old 07-08-2014, 09:21 PM   #3
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How long were you on the road? Nice trip, but I hope it wasn't hurried.
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Old 07-08-2014, 10:34 PM   #4
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Just over 3 weeks, so yes, more hurried than I would like but all the time we had. Still got to see my Mom, Wife's Aunt, Uncle & Cousin plus my daughter and 3 Grandkids.
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Old 07-08-2014, 10:48 PM   #5
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Ron, can you tell me exactly which cubbie you removed to disable the sensor? I've been having a lot of trouble with mine. I removed a bunch of screws, but never found the sensor. Airstream and Mercedes are both pointing at each other saying it's their problem...that's actually happening a lot lately.
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Old 07-09-2014, 04:53 AM   #6
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Ron, can you tell me exactly which cubbie you removed to disable the sensor? I've been having a lot of trouble with mine. I removed a bunch of screws, but never found the sensor. Airstream and Mercedes are both pointing at each other saying it's their problem...that's actually happening a lot lately.
I'm not Ron, but I know the answer to this… When you open the sliding side door, rearward from the step, there is a small recessed storage shelf with bungee cords across the front to keep stuff from falling out. You just have to remove a few screws and the whole shelf comes out. The sensor is behind that.
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Old 07-09-2014, 07:59 AM   #7
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I'm not Ron, but I know the answer to this… When you open the sliding side door, rearward from the step, there is a small recessed storage shelf with bungee cords across the front to keep stuff from falling out. You just have to remove a few screws and the whole shelf comes out. The sensor is behind that.
This is correct. It is either 6 or 8 screws and you will need a short screw driver. Once you remove the trim piece with bungee cords attached you have to pull out the inside of the box out which is sheet metal with felt attached to it. This may take some pulling and prying as it is wedged in there pretty tight. All in all, probably a 10 minute job.
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Old 07-09-2014, 08:12 AM   #8
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Congrats! That was quite a first shakedown run
Thanks David.

I was a little apprehensive about the steep climb up the mountains out of the imperial valley (desert) into San Diego County. It was 113 degrees yesterday afternoon when I pulled over in Ocotillo. I fired up my generator, turned on the roof air and turned off my dash AC for the climb up. I am not sure this was needed but I was watching my coolant gauge and the temp definitely went up during my climb up the mountain so was probably a good idea. We went up easily at 60 mph in 4th gear and there weren't to many slow moving big rigs to maneuver around. Again, super impressed with the drivetrain in these Mercedes Sprinters.
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Old 07-09-2014, 11:17 AM   #9
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Curious how cool the rear A/C kept the interior w/o the chassis A/C. I can't keep the rear of the RV cool w/ both going when temps over 85* and I even mounted two 9" fans to blow the cold air from the front to the rear.
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Old 07-09-2014, 11:22 AM   #10
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Good to hear that your big trip went so well Ron. We have only done one short (700mi) trip in ours but we have two short trips (300 & 1100mi) planned for this month then the big one, 7,000 miles & 30 days leaving in mid September. That one is to the east coast via a southerly route so as to visit some civil war sites, the Blue Ridge Parkway, not to mention Jack Daniels. We plan to tour the Airstream factory on the homeward leg. We did a similiar trip 4 years ago in a class B+ (Navion IQ) and everything went well with two minor glitches that didn't hold us up.
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Old 07-09-2014, 11:57 AM   #11
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73shark

Probably not very cool... The back gets no air from the front and when it's hot the roof AC doesn't really cool it down much... I wish they would have run a few vents to the back so when the car AC is on the back would be cooled by that instead of having to run gen and roof AC if you want to sit back there when in motion......
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Old 07-09-2014, 12:42 PM   #12
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Curious how cool the rear A/C kept the interior w/o the chassis A/C. I can't keep the rear of the RV cool w/ both going when temps over 85* and I even mounted two 9" fans to blow the cold air from the front to the rear.
Pretty cool...Keep in mind I had been running the chassisi air along with roof AC for 10-15 minutes and only turned the chassis air off as I started to climb the mountain. I left it off for 30 minutes or so and while certainly not cold, with the dash fan blowing and roof AC on was way cooler than without.
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Old 07-09-2014, 12:48 PM   #13
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Good to hear that your big trip went so well Ron. We have only done one short (700mi) trip in ours but we have two short trips (300 & 1100mi) planned for this month then the big one, 7,000 miles & 30 days leaving in mid September. That one is to the east coast via a southerly route so as to visit some civil war sites, the Blue Ridge Parkway, not to mention Jack Daniels. We plan to tour the Airstream factory on the homeward leg. We did a similiar trip 4 years ago in a class B+ (Navion IQ) and everything went well with two minor glitches that didn't hold us up.
Thanks Bill. You shouldn't have any problems especially in Sept when it starts to cool off a bit. You have to go to Vicksburg Mississippi and go to the National Military Park. It has a 16 mile driven tour along with 144 cannons and various monuments to the battle (approx 45 days) at Vicksburg along with an Ironclad the Cairo which was recovered in 1960 after being submerged for almost 100 years.
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Old 07-09-2014, 02:05 PM   #14
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Thanks Bill. You shouldn't have any problems especially in Sept when it starts to cool off a bit. You have to go to Vicksburg Mississippi and go to the National Military Park. It has a 16 mile driven tour along with 144 cannons and various monuments to the battle (approx 45 days) at Vicksburg along with an Ironclad the Cairo which was recovered in 1960 after being submerged for almost 100 years.
Thanks for the tip Ron, we'll try to include that.
Bill
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