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Old 01-25-2013, 07:38 PM   #71
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Just a quick note about rear axle seals. Back in August of 2008 while we still lived in Arkansas I bought over $1000 worth of front end parts and rear axle parts from O'Reillys in Arkansas. Well, between job transfers and then moving everything from Arkansas to Kentucky I never had a chance to install the rear axle seals. Well today I removed the old seals and dug the new seals out of storage and found that they were the wrong ones

They had cost $25 each so needless to say I was a little bit upset about wasting that kind of money. I figured what the heck and took the two seals and the original 2008 receipt to the local O'Reillys and was very surprised when they had no problems with me exchanging the wrong seals for the correct seals. The price for my new seals only $12.50 each. The best news is they actually refunded me the difference between what I paid for the original seals and what the new seals cost. I certainly can't complain about customer service from O'Reillys

I'm taking the two brake drums and rear hubs to a local service shop to have them remove and clean the bearings and then reassemble everything with new the new seals. With any luck the brake drums will be back on the Argosy sometime this coming week and I can put the wheels back on.

Maybe I am making a little progress

Brad
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Old 01-26-2013, 05:57 PM   #72
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Made some more progress on the Argosy this afternoon. I took the brake drums down to the local service shop and for $30 and about an hours wait they removed the bearings, cleaned & packed them and then installed the new seals. It would have taken me a lot longer because I would have struggled trying to get the large snap ring out. I don't have the proper tool for that job. That was $30 well spent.

I'm happy to say the brake drums are now in stalled. I just need to torque the axle nuts and then adjust the shoes. Once those two tasks are accomplished the rear brakes will be complete. I also managed to replace the rear brake hose as well.

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All this talk about rub rails reminded me of the fact that virtually all of the rub rail end caps are missing on my Argosy. They are larger than the small rub rails on the 345 and smaller than the large rub rails. They are 1-1/4" to be exact! If anyone has a source for these things I'd sure like to know about it.

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The next task was to remove the existing electrical breaker box. What a mess. I have no idea if some previous owner reworked the system or if Airstream did the work. Crude to say the least. The worst was when I realized that the ground and neutral wires were tied together. That is not the way it's supposed to be. I'm glad I decided to rewire things. The other surprising thing I found is appears there is only one 120 romex cable going to the breaker box. Apparently the Argosy only had one circuit originally. I'm going to have to figure out some way to separate things a little better.

I guess my 6.5kv Onan generator might be a little overkill

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The last task of the day was also the hardest. I spent close to an hour and a half trying to get this one screw out of the dash cover plate. There are two of these 3/8" flathead screws in the dash. The first one only took about 30 minutes to remove. This one was just a bear from the get go. Removing the nut and lock washer wasn't to bad but it was stuck in place so I had to break it free using a pry bar from below. Once it popped free I then had to figure out how to get it out from under the windshield gasket. Well after a lot of cursing, twisting and turning I finally managed to get it out. Now I just have to figure out how to get the aluminum plate out from under the windshield gasket. I bet I have spent 5 hours so far trying to get that aluminum plate off. I know it can be done because John (Shepherd57) has done it.

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A couple of other things to note. There is a fan mounted in the windshield center post. Based on how the wiring is run it sure looks like it was factory installed. The other interesting item is there is a cb antenna mounted on top of the top center running light. It also looks like it could have been factory mounted. Just a couple of more things that make this Argosy unique!

Brad
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Old 01-26-2013, 06:51 PM   #73
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So what I hear you saying is don't tough the dash. Paint it, cover it with carpet, whatever, just don't touch it. If the heater goes out just buy a ceramic plug plug in, that's why they put a generator in the 350.

A fricken chair is kicking my butt, I can't even imagine the dash!!
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Old 01-26-2013, 08:20 PM   #74
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So what I hear you saying is don't tough the dash. Paint it, cover it with carpet, whatever, just don't touch it. If the heater goes out just buy a ceramic plug plug in, that's why they put a generator in the 350.

A fricken chair is kicking my butt, I can't even imagine the dash!!
No, what I'm saying is buy something that doesn't need so much work

Look at it this way, everything just gets harder the more you tear into it so enjoy the easy stuff while you can. At least that's been my experience!
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:53 PM   #75
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Nothing is ever easy. As I was dismantling the dash from the Argosy I found that all of the a/c louvers were so brittle they broke when trying to remove them Of course that meant I now had to find replacements.

I've been searching for months trying to find louvers that would fit in the existing rectangular openings without success. I finally found one that was advertised as being the same basic length but was listed as 3/8" wider. I decided it was worth a try so I ordered one. Sure enough it would fit the same width that I currently have but I will need to enlarge the openings by 3/8" to make them fit. But, there is always a bump in the road. The new louvers were for 2" hose and the Argosy uses 2-1/2" hose

At this point I decided it would be worth the effort to try and make one good louver out of the old one and the new one.

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Using the Multi-Tool I cut the backs off of each of the louvers. Of course what I found on the new one didn't exactly make me happy. It turns out it was originally designed for 2-1/2" hose, but the supplier glued a 2" adapter over the opening

Anyway as you can see in the pictures once I glue the two pieces together I'll have a louver that will work just fine in the dash. It's just frustrating to have to go to the extra work of modifying a new louver to make it work. Oh well...

The other thing I got done was to rebuild one of the two wiper motor assemblies I got from the 345. Both of the Argosy wiper assemblies were a mess. The pivot shafts were broken and parts were missing. Since the 345 wiper motors are at least 12 years newer than the ones in the Argosy I opted to use those instead. Only problem was one of them had a bent pivot shaft due to the wreck it suffered. Thanks to Smartstream's posting of the supplier for those parts I was able to order a new pivot assembly. Tonight I got the pivot assembly installed so I'm now ready to install the wiper motor assemblies.

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Little by little it's getting done

Brad
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Old 02-02-2013, 07:15 PM   #76
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Got a bunch of odd ball stuff done today. Didn't really complete anything but did some more demolition work inside and a little outside.

Inside I finally removed the microwave hanging under the overhead bin by the sink. That was a royal pain to remove. The four screws that the microwave was hanging from were about 2-1/2" long and I had to use one of those little right angle screw drivers that I had to flip end for end every quarter turn. Took FOREVER But the microwave is now out and will be scrapped. I'm guessing it was the original microwave based on how it was installed.

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Next up was to remove the rest of the piping and wiring in the compartment under the couch/bed at the left rear. Here's a before picture. Notice how the copper piping is attached to the city water port.

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The wood floor looks a whole lot worse than it really is. I tested it in a lot of places and it seems pretty solid. Finally something going my way

Sometime in its past a PO must have scraped the left rear corner of coach right were the city water connection box was located. Whoever did the repairs did a horrible job. Apparently the replacement part wasn't shaped like the original and they did a hack job to get it to work. The copper piping inside was to rigid to allow the new city water port was to big and it stuck out of the wall on the outside. so some enterprising PO used bondo to make it look better

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They had a real near miss while installing the replacement port. When the drilled the hole for the rivet they just skimmed the 120vac romex cable that is inside the wall.

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I will be replacing all of the copper plumbing with PEX. I've already bought a new city water connection and will be installing it as soon as I can figure out how to smooth the aluminum skin in that area.

Another lucky break for me today when I cut the hose going from the water tank to the water pump. I thought the tank was empty but I guess not. Fortunately it was below freezing today (and the last few as well) and the water in the hose was frozen! Saved me from have a wet mess on the floor. for the time being I've elevated the hose higher than the tank and opened the drain valve beside the tank. Hopefully the drain isn't plugged.

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Also did some more work on the front of the engine, finishing up the power steering pump brackets and installing a CS-144 alternator. I still have a little more work to do on the A/C compressor brackets. I'm not happy with the angle of the compressor pulley in relation to the crank pulley. Not sure what I did wrong or if that's just how it fits. I'll work on that more tomorrow.

Brad
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Old 02-03-2013, 03:53 AM   #77
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You did get allot done!
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Old 02-03-2013, 03:37 PM   #78
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You did get allot done!
Kinda sorta. It still seems like I'm mostly ripping out instead of putting back

Today I just kinda poked around a little tinkering with a bunch of small things. It's just been to cold here to really feel like doing much of anything so I've just been kinda lazy the last few days.

Brad
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Old 02-03-2013, 04:12 PM   #79
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Kinda sorta. It still seems like I'm mostly ripping out instead of putting back
Yeah, I know the feeling! I have that pit in my stomach as I look around inside thinking "What the heck have I gotten myself into!"

That and what on earth was Airstream thinking when they structurally covered things you would want to get at (i.e. door hinge nuts, dead bolt, fuse box, etc)
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Old 02-03-2013, 04:25 PM   #80
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Some of the poking around I did involved getting a peek behind the electrical control panel in the overhead bin. After reading about Fred's problems with mice chewing on wires in his Argosy I was a little concerned about mine. Fortunately it would seem the little critters didn't bother any this wiring. I really haven't seen any evidence that mice have chewed on anything. I've definitely seen a LOT of signs of mice but no real damage.

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Here are a couple of pictures of the cooling fan that I removed from the generator compartment yesterday. Kinda cool looking and oddly enough it was made in Yugoslavia!

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I don't know if its 120vac or 12vdc. For that matter I don't even know if it's anygood. One of these days I'll spend a little time tinkering with it. I have no plans to re-use it but it is sort of neat looking

Oh yeah, here's a picture of the under bed electrical/water compartment after having removed everything. I plan on putting one or two AGM batteries, breaker panel and the water pump in this area.

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Also finished up the mounting modifications for installation of the 124A CS-144 alternator. Should give me more than enough power for a little 20' motorhome!

Brad
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Old 02-03-2013, 04:34 PM   #81
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Yeah, I know the feeling! I have that pit in my stomach as I look around inside thinking "What the heck have I gotten myself into!"

That and what on earth was Airstream thinking when they structurally covered things you would want to get at (i.e. door hinge nuts, dead bolt, fuse box, etc)
Just wait until you need to repair or replace either of your furnaces. If your 350 is anything like the 345 the rear furnace is buried under a closet and the front furnace is buried under the kitchen sink cabinet

Warmer weather this coming week so I hope to get the new A/C unit up the roof. It just doesn't look right without an air conditioner sitting up there!

Brad
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Old 02-03-2013, 07:37 PM   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkahler View Post
Just wait until you need to repair or replace either of your furnaces. If your 350 is anything like the 345 the rear furnace is buried under a closet and the front furnace is buried under the kitchen sink cabinet

Warmer weather this coming week so I hope to get the new A/C unit up the roof. It just doesn't look right without an air conditioner sitting up there!

Brad
Great...... I am having issues with the rear furnace.... Figures!
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Old 02-10-2013, 06:46 PM   #83
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Great...... I am having issues with the rear furnace.... Figures!
Nothing a crowbar and a little elbow grease won't cure
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:24 PM   #84
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Ever since I "completed" the mechanical installation of the electric steps on the 310 and the Argosy I kept wondering why the steps on the 310 felt so solid and on the Argosy there seemed to be a lot of flex. I finally took the time to see what was going on and realized that the 1/8" plate that I used to create a new floor in the entry way wasn't strong enough. The step assembly is bolted to the 1/8" plate and when standing on the 1st step you could see the plate flex upward toward the back and the front edge of the plate flex downward.

So, I had two custom support pieces fabricated. The back one is an angle support made from 1/4" plate with a custom bend. The back wall of the entry way isn't perpendicular, it had about an 8 degree angle so I had the shop bend something to match. That took care of the back end of the plate flexing upwards. For the front of the plate where it was flexing down I had a custom channel made from 3/16" plate that spans the front of the step assembly and bolts to the existing Argosy step framework.

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With those two pieces in place the steps are now rock solid. There is no difference in feel between the 310 and the Argosy when standing on the steps. Now I just need to connect the wiring.

While poking around the wiring in the dash I came across this little blue module. It has A.R.A on one side and a part number on the other. I've never seen anything like it. I didn't have time to trace down the wiring so I'm still clueless as to what it's for. Any ideas?!

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The overhead liner in the cab has a picture glued in place and some velcro strips stuck up there as well. Any suggestions on how to get them off without damaging the liner?

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Over the years I've read various threads where people talk about running a curtain behind the cockpit seats to allow the dash air system to work more effectively. Tonight I was poking around inside the Argosy and noticed for the first time that there is an overhead aluminum track for a curtain! My first thought was this was in lieu of the curtains that are usually along the windshield. Not so, the Argosy has the track for front windshield curtains also. It looks like it came from the factory with the track installed. The track itself is an inverted T. Now I just need to find the slides or rollers for the track

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Last but not least the front hubs and rotors are done and ready to go back on the coach. I'm going to hold off until I get done steam cleaning the engine compartment and wheel wells.

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Getting closer...

Brad
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