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Old 10-28-2013, 06:52 PM   #43
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Was it air cooled or water cooled?
Air cooled, according to the specs.
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Old 11-04-2013, 08:12 AM   #44
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Last week I took my Interstate to my local Cummins/Onan dealer for a warranty repair. Turns out the generator's voltage regulator was fried. Literally. They showed it to me, and it was scordched.

But while I was there, I had a Cummins/Onan resonator installed as well. Now I wish I didn't. Here's what happened…

I picked up my Interstate from the Cummins/Onan dealer after work on Thursday. Drove there in my toad, then hooked up the toad and towed it home. Very conveninent not having to scrounge a ride. But anyway, it's five miles from the Cummins dealer to my home. A couple of times I heard a brief banging noise from the rear of the Interstate, but given New Orleans streets, I thought it was just the towbar or something in one of the cabinets when I hit a pavement joint. I wasn't worried. But I should have been.

Saturday, I decided to take my Interstate to the nearest Blue Beacon Truck Wash, which is about three miles from Camping World, where I was planning to pick up some leveling blocks. About five miles from home, on I-10, I started hearing that intermittent banging noise again. This time I wasn't towing my car, so I knew the noise wasn't from the towbar, but I still couldn't trace the sound while I was driving.

Very soon, the banging noise became a scraping noise, and I knew that I had to pull over to investigate. On I-10. On a thirteen-mile-long bridge on I-10. On a bridge with very narrow shoulders. Luckily there was an on-ramp where I-310 merges into I-10, so there was a wide spot where I could pull over. Good thing, too, because about a hundred feet before I pulled over, the scraping noise stopped. Cars behind me started honking their horns and the drivers flashed me rude gestures as they passed.

When I stopped safely and got out to look, there was my generator's exhaust pipe, lying in the road! Not just the resonator, the whole exhaust pipe. No one ran over it— though there was chaos as drivers swerved around it without looking to see if they were cutting off traffic in the adjoining lane— and luckily no one ran over me as I dashed out to pick up the fallen exhaust pipe. I just count my blessings that I wasn't towing my toad when the exhaust pipe fell off. My toad only has 6 inches of ground clearance, and running over the exhaust pipe would have severely damaged the toad!

As I picked up the exhaust pipe, the resonator fell off if it, so I had a piece in each hand. There was a clamp on the joint between resonator and exhaust pipe, but it wasn't clamped tight, just the resonator was slip-fit to the pipe. I did notice there was no damage on the end of the pipe where it had attached to the generator. No bends, no cracks, nothing. Like it had just slipped off, not broke off. I threw the pieces in the back of the Interstate and went on my merry way.

When I got to the truck wash, I had to wait in line behind a couple of semis, and took advantage of the wait to look underneath the Interstate. Lo and behold, there was not one single pipe hanger under there. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Zero. The only thing holding the exhaust pipe in place before was the connection to the pipe where it comes out of the generator enclosure, and that was a slip-fit as well. That may have been fine when it was just an exhaust pipe attached there— it fact it was fine for close to two years— but with the heavier resonator, it wasn't good enough anymore.

I am now less than impressed with my Cumins/Onan dealer. They owe me a brand-new resonator that hasn't been scraped along the pavement, and they owe me an install that won't come off accidentally. And they owe it to me to loan me a creeper when I pick it up again, so that I can slide under there to do my own quality assurance before leaving their lot.

I'll be taking it back in sometime next week, after my planned Veterans Day weekend camping trip; the campground I'm visiting has hookups so I won't need the generator. With luck Cummins/Onan will be open Veterans Day, so I can leave the campground in mid-morning to drop off the Interstate that afternoon and not have to take extra time off from work to do it another day.
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Old 11-04-2013, 08:29 AM   #45
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Wow, that sounds bad. Did Onan do away with the original hangers or has Airstream quit using them?

Did the sound level change inside and/or outside with the resonator before it fell off?
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:05 AM   #46
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Wow, that sounds bad.
Since I got a story out of it, it was an adventure, however unintended. If I didn't get a story out of it, that would have been a disaster! But it did take a couple of days' cooling-off period before my anger subsided to the point that I could become philosophical about it.

Quote:
Did Onan do away with the original hangers or has Airstream quit using them?
No idea. The added weight of the resonator would have justified adding a hanger in either case. The fact that no hangers at all were used is worrisome. Odd thing is, the heat shield clamped to the exhaust pipe was still in place, and very solidly attached! At first I half expected that to be missing as well.

Quote:
Did the sound level change inside and/or outside with the resonator before it fell off?
Seemed to be a bit quieter outside. No much difference inside, as far as I could tell with my old ears. Didn't exactly do before-and-after sound metering to measure the difference. Since the main reason for putting it in the shop was the voltage regulator issue, I was more concerned with, "Will it start?" and, "Will it keep running?" than I was with, "Is it quieter?"
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:29 AM   #47
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I guess the fact that whoever did the work thought it would be OK to leave the hangers off would cause me to wonder how good the rest of their work is. It seems anyone with a modicum of mechanical knowledge would realize that you would need at least a hanger at the end of the pipe.

It's sort of like my story of spending a year getting my dealer to re-attach the Airstream applied side molding that was all becoming unattached at the leading and trailing ends. After they finally did it, it looked good for awhile but then started to come loose again. Turned out that they didn't re-attach using 3M molding tape. They used some kind of black stickum like what is used to attach the plastic water shield inside door panels. Now they are no longer an Airstream dealer so guess I have too do it right myself.
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Old 11-04-2013, 09:49 AM   #48
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I guess the fact that whoever did the work thought it would be OK to leave the hangers off would cause me to wonder how good the rest of their work is.
That statement implies that leaving the hangers off was a conscious choice. Far more likely, since the RV market is far from being Cummins/Onan's bread and butter, they don't exactly assign their best people to work on them when other customers who spend more are in the next bay over. The next bay over from my Interstate held a fire truck; you know they put the best service technicians working on that one! Local government agencies have deeper pockets, after all. The lack of hangers on my Interstate could have been a simple omission by an inexperienced technician rather than a conscious choice.

It doesn't say much for their quality assurance, though, that they apparently didn't have someone with more experience check the work. Luckily, my warranty expires in just under two months, and then I can take my generator repairs elsewhere.
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Old 11-04-2013, 11:16 AM   #49
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[QUOTE=Protagonist;1375536]
I am now less than impressed with my Cumins/Onan dealer. They owe me a brand-new resonator that hasn't been scraped along the pavement, and they owe me an install that won't come off accidentally. And they owe it to me to loan me a creeper when I pick it up again, so that I can slide under there to do my own quality assurance before leaving their lot./QUOTE]

Wow - sorry to hear about this Protag; I had a full blown muffler installed on mine at a muffler shop; they cut the original pipe and installed it in-line so that the original pipe still connects to hanger. Pretty Sad what qualifies as 'Service these days'.
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Old 11-04-2013, 07:28 PM   #50
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Ouch. Sorry to hear of your issues.

The generator exhaust definitely has a hanger on the 2012 EXT. I recall using it when I hooked up my resonator and chrome exhaust tip. There are pictures of it in my previous post (can't figure out how to link to it). My guess is that reattaching it was oversight by the installer.
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