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Old 09-26-2015, 10:21 PM   #1
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Sloppy - loose steering on a 78 24 ft

I have been waiting for weeks to get a chance to look at a 24 foot Argosy and I think tomorrow is the day. The owner said its in great shape and everything works. He said the only concern is that the steering is "loose" he thinks it's something in the steering column . Is this a common problem on these motorhomes? It has 91k on it.
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Old 09-26-2015, 10:45 PM   #2
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I've never heard of any vehicle with anything loose in the steering column except the rag joint I guess there's a first time for everything, but that's the first place to look.

Either that, or the steering gear box.

Or the whole front end is shot. (sorry!)
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Old 09-26-2015, 10:58 PM   #3
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I should have explained I don't think it's the steering column but was wondering if the sloppy steering is common and what is usually the cause. I did a Google search and found that damaged front air bags and worn out shocks can cause the sloppy steering. Does that sound right? I was think it might be worn tie rod ends or the other usual suspects which I will check for.
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Old 09-27-2015, 06:51 AM   #4
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Check the bell cranks on both sides...
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Old 09-27-2015, 07:08 AM   #5
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Ball joints, bell cranks, gear box adjustment, stabilizer, all the usual suspects on any vehicle that old. You just gotta go through the whole steering and suspension and see whats what. But.....they are a real pleasure to drive once you start getting it dialed in.Click image for larger version

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Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAirstream Forums1443355479.262405.jpg
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You dont want THIS TO HAPPEN ON THE ROAD.
Snapped upper n lower ball joint passenger side at a rest stop in the middle of nowhere Kansas. The ball joints were on my list of things yet to do...........obviously I should have moved them up in priority. Hahahahaha. Thank god no one was hurt and we were only going about 3mph at a rest stop when they snapped.


Good luck on your purchase


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Old 09-27-2015, 12:33 PM   #6
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Find an old-school medium duty truck shop:

1) That has an old-school alignment rack.

2) That has an old-school alignment tech.

If you replace any parts (steering linkage, ball joints) on the front end, you're gonna need an alignment anyway. You'd just as well get it all done at the same time.

Rule of thumb = When it comes to steering, you want results, not a bargain.

Tom
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Old 09-28-2015, 07:52 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jm2 View Post
Check the bell cranks on both sides...
Yep, bell cranks are probably the biggest contributor to sloppy steering. There are two, one on each side. Figure about $325 per side for the replacement bell cranks from Super Steer plus several hours labor to replace and then add in a front end alignment.
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Old 09-28-2015, 07:52 AM   #8
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I will not have to worry about the steering issue since we did not buy the Argosy. It was too much of a project for me at this time of my live. I have too many project going as it is. . My definition of good shape for its age differed greatly form the owners. If any one is looking for a project camper near Savanna IL PM me I can give you the contact information. He dropped his price to 1500.00 before I left but it was just not what I wanted. I am going to hold out for a 20 ft rear bedroom so I may never have one but that's okay too. I realized I am far better off paying more for a better example so I will bide my time until one shows up.
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Old 09-28-2015, 07:53 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mayco View Post
Ball joints, bell cranks, gear box adjustment, stabilizer, all the usual suspects on any vehicle that old. You just gotta go through the whole steering and suspension and see whats what. But.....they are a real pleasure to drive once you start getting it dialed in.Attachment 249091
Attachment 249092

You dont want THIS TO HAPPEN ON THE ROAD.
Snapped upper n lower ball joint passenger side at a rest stop in the middle of nowhere Kansas. The ball joints were on my list of things yet to do...........obviously I should have moved them up in priority. Hahahahaha. Thank god no one was hurt and we were only going about 3mph at a rest stop when they snapped.
Mike, I've never seen or heard of this happening before!

I'm glad I've already replaced all of the ball joints on my Argosy

Brad
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Old 09-28-2015, 08:34 AM   #10
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It was a trip for sure, one heck of a THUNK when it happened. But, as so many cases, it all turned out great. Ended up getting all new ball joints, bearings packed, and some other misc stuff done at an incredibly reasonable price. Great folks in rural Kansas, just great.
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Old 09-28-2015, 09:32 AM   #11
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Wow. I'd hate to think of the outcome had you been going 65 mph on the highway.

Any idea what caused the failure(s)?
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Old 09-28-2015, 09:34 AM   #12
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I had that happen with a ball joint that was less than three months old....

I was going slow when it let loose, twenty minutes earlier and things might have been very different.


Brevi tempore!
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Old 09-28-2015, 11:52 AM   #13
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Its only a guess as to why they failed like they did, Im assuming they were original to the chassis. At this point I have replaced all ball joints, installed SS bell cranks, new shocks, new air bags, new stabilizer, and new tires. It is a real pleasure to drive it down the road these days. Semi trucks passing doesnt phase the steering a bit (or very very little) and with that beautiful view through the wrap around windows its fun to drive.

Mike
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Old 09-28-2015, 06:22 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mayco View Post
Its only a guess as to why they failed like they did, Im assuming they were original to the chassis. At this point I have replaced all ball joints, installed SS bell cranks, new shocks, new air bags, new stabilizer, and new tires. It is a real pleasure to drive it down the road these days. Semi trucks passing doesnt phase the steering a bit (or very very little) and with that beautiful view through the wrap around windows its fun to drive.

Mike
That's they way they should handle

My Argosy will have all new so hopefully it will handle as nice as yours.
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