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Old 07-16-2007, 11:16 AM   #1
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Door Hinge Pin Comes out

We have a 2007 Bambi. During the last two outings, the lower hinge pin has come out about 1/4". I drove it back in to place both times. I notice that the top area where the pin is inserted has been knurled with a center punch to (apparently) keep it in place.

Any ideas on what is causing the lower pin to walk out, and how to fix the problem ?
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Old 07-16-2007, 11:23 AM   #2
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Sounds to me like you should be taking it back to the dealer to fix this...I assume it's still under some sort of warranty being it's a 2007. I wouldn't want to be messing with it too much for fear of their saying you voided their ability to fix it because you tried to.

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Old 07-16-2007, 12:05 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InsideOut
Sounds to me like you should be taking it back to the dealer to fix this...I assume it's still under some sort of warranty being it's a 2007. I wouldn't want to be messing with it too much for fear of their saying you voided their ability to fix it because you tried to.

Shari
Yes, it is still under warranty. I wanted to hear from all the experts on this forum first. There is a wealth of knowledge and experience here. I would not consider what I have done (or even tried to) fixing it as it is still working its way out. What I have done though is kept the pin from coming all the way out which would be disastrous going down the road.

Unfortunately, my dealer does not have a covered shop (can you believe it) to work in. With all the rain we have been experiencing here in Houston, I want to be sure its not gonna be raining whilst they have the door open/off to repair
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:24 PM   #4
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Hello ! I had the same problem with my '06.

I think you will find that the most economical way to retain your hinge pin is by "staking" it on the top or bottomside depending which way the pin is coming out and maybe doing both sides for good measure.

It is a simple task done with a pointed drift pin and hammer. The drift must be made of harder metal than the metal holding your pin.

Holding your drift at an angle toward the pin, the idea is to mash a little metal of the holder around the pin to keep it from working loose. If it was done at all, you should see evidence of "dimpling" on the hinge around the hinge pin.

Should only take 5 minutes or so after you assess the problem and round up the tools, rain or shine !

Good luck.
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:38 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by B4WEDI
Hello ! I had the same problem with my '06.

I think you will find that the most economical way to retain your hinge pin is by "staking" it on the top or bottomside depending which way the pin is coming out and maybe doing both sides for good measure.

It is a simple task done with a pointed drift pin and hammer. The drift must be made of harder metal than the metal holding your pin.

Holding your drift at an angle toward the pin, the idea is to mash a little metal of the holder around the pin to keep it from working loose. If it was done at all, you should see evidence of "dimpling" on the hinge around the hinge pin.

Should only take 5 minutes or so after you assess the problem and round up the tools, rain or shine !

Good luck.
Thanks !! I have one thing to add though. I noticed that the Pin ends are grooved. Should the pin be stationary when the door is opened or closed or should it turn with the door ? My pin turns when the door is opened or closed.
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:38 PM   #6
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We have the exact same problem on our '06 Bambi. We thought we had it fixed last summer, but noticed the same problem on a longer trip just a few weeks ago.

Our pin end is grooved too. And the pin seems to move when the door is open or closed.

If anyone gets an answer from the factory about why this is happening on new models, I'd like to hear what they have to say.

Thanks!

-J
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Old 07-16-2007, 12:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dougjamie
We have the exact same problem on our '06 Bambi. We thought we had it fixed last summer, but noticed the same problem on a longer trip just a few weeks ago.

Our pin end is grooved too. And the pin seems to move when the door is open or closed.

If anyone gets an answer from the factory about why this is happening on new models, I'd like to hear what they have to say.

Thanks!

-J
New models, old models, are one in the same.

The reason the hinge pins come out is because the door is shaking.

The fix?

Balance the running gear, tire, wheel, hub and drum as an assembly.

The balancing is not covered by warranty.

Andy
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Old 07-16-2007, 01:11 PM   #8
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Looking at my 2003, and I expect yours would be the same, the pin is driven in from the top, and it has been staked four times, that is every 90 degrees at the interface between the pin and the hinge body..
This pin does not rotate at all. The staking prevents ALL motion, both rotational and vertical. The pin is contained in the bottom part of the hinge in a hole that does not penetrate the bottom. Between the upper support point and the lower, a collar covers the actual pin and it rotates with the door motion. This collar rides on flat washers on it's two ends and these washers interface with the top & bottom part of the hinge mechanism.

Both of the door hinges look the same.

One of my eight "stakes" is ineffective due to it's position too far from the pin. The other three "stakes" are more than sufficient to hold the pin.

This fix takes a trivial amount of time to perform. Make an appointment, so you can take it in and won't need to leave it.
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Old 07-16-2007, 02:27 PM   #9
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You also are having many bulbs burning out...I agree with what was said on that thread and this one....your running gear needs to be checked and balanced. If you don't get it done, this will surely get worse.
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Old 07-17-2007, 07:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
New models, old models, are one in the same.

The reason the hinge pins come out is because the door is shaking.

The fix?

Balance the running gear, tire, wheel, hub and drum as an assembly.

The balancing is not covered by warranty.

Andy
Hi Andy,

I can agree that an unbalanced running gear could cause this, but what jumps out at this situation is this; 1. The pin on the lower hinge (the one that is walking upward) turns with the door as you open and close. This to me seems to be more of a binding situation. The pin in the upper hinge (which is fine and is properly staked) does not move (turn) when the door is opened or closed. 2. There is about a 1/8" gap on the upper side of both hinge assemblies, which would allow for some upward movement from normal road roughness. The trip that started this was in Louisiana, and the roads are terrible along I-10 !! I guess my thoughts are the binding situation in the lower hinge is the root cause. If the pin would remain stationairy (like the upper hinge) it would merely move freely. I'm planning to take it in and discuss with the Service Manager. And yes, we will be discussing running gear balancing, but I do not see evidence of that problem when I stop and check the interior while trailering. It things like the cutting board/sink cover would be off on the floor or the pillows strewn around or cabinet doors open, I would lean toward the balance issue.

Aside from those things mentioned above, are there any other symptoms that I can look for ?
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Old 07-17-2007, 09:04 AM   #11
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When you look down at the top of the bottom hinge and you see the pin rotating with the door, you have a broken stake. A properly stated pin does not move in any direction.
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Old 07-17-2007, 09:29 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 64Vette
Hi Andy,

I can agree that an unbalanced running gear could cause this, but what jumps out at this situation is this; 1. The pin on the lower hinge (the one that is walking upward) turns with the door as you open and close. This to me seems to be more of a binding situation. The pin in the upper hinge (which is fine and is properly staked) does not move (turn) when the door is opened or closed. 2. There is about a 1/8" gap on the upper side of both hinge assemblies, which would allow for some upward movement from normal road roughness. The trip that started this was in Louisiana, and the roads are terrible along I-10 !! I guess my thoughts are the binding situation in the lower hinge is the root cause. If the pin would remain stationairy (like the upper hinge) it would merely move freely. I'm planning to take it in and discuss with the Service Manager. And yes, we will be discussing running gear balancing, but I do not see evidence of that problem when I stop and check the interior while trailering. It things like the cutting board/sink cover would be off on the floor or the pillows strewn around or cabinet doors open, I would lean toward the balance issue.

Aside from those things mentioned above, are there any other symptoms that I can look for ?
You dealer should replace the bottom hinge in warranty.

Make sure that they apply vulkem sealer to the threads and nut on the backside of the hinge.

Running gear is either balanced, or not.

If not, sooner or later, damage will occur.

Depending on what may happen, you quite well may have wished that you had the running gear properly balanced.

Damage can get into thousands of dollars, and then it's to late.

History bears this out, over and over again and again.

Assuming the running gear is in proper balance has greater odds than you winning the Mega lottery.

Andy

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Old 07-17-2007, 07:18 PM   #13
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My door lower hinge pin is working its way up too on our 2007. The door has already been worked on at JC twice for adjustment. Is there a temporary fix because I can't drive 6-8 hours round trip to get it looked at now? Could another RV dealer handle that or is it specific to Airstreams.

And Andy what does it cost to having running gear balanced and what is the procedure, how long should it take, and you say it is not covered under warrantee? How often should this be done and what are telltale signs this is necessary between checks? Is there a check or is it just a job to be done always?

As a note, my cushions slide off, my sink covers have hopped off and this is the rear door, if that is of any consequence. Also when we had the 2006 Safari FB the table on that unit would lift up, the Classic table is too heavy to lift up and off it seems. There is little weight in the rear as currently loaded, does that matter?
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Old 07-17-2007, 07:53 PM   #14
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All 4 of my wheels were just replaced but it sounds like balancing is not a given then?
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Old 07-18-2007, 11:43 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wheel interested
My door lower hinge pin is working its way up too on our 2007. The door has already been worked on at JC twice for adjustment. Is there a temporary fix because I can't drive 6-8 hours round trip to get it looked at now? Could another RV dealer handle that or is it specific to Airstreams.

And Andy what does it cost to having running gear balanced and what is the procedure, how long should it take, and you say it is not covered under warrantee? How often should this be done and what are telltale signs this is necessary between checks? Is there a check or is it just a job to be done always?

As a note, my cushions slide off, my sink covers have hopped off and this is the rear door, if that is of any consequence. Also when we had the 2006 Safari FB the table on that unit would lift up, the Classic table is too heavy to lift up and off it seems. There is little weight in the rear as currently loaded, does that matter?
Balanced running gear is a must.

The following article and photo's shows how we do the balancing.

Wheel Balancing Photos - Inland RV

If this system is used to balance the gear using steel wheels, the labor runs about .3 hours per wheel.

If this system is used to balance the gear using aluminum wheels, the labor runs about .4 hours per wheel. The difference being that the aluminum wheels also used a bullet cap.

Andy
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Old 07-18-2007, 03:27 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
Balanced running gear is a must.

The following article and photo's shows how we do the balancing.

Wheel Balancing Photos - Inland RV

If this system is used to balance the gear using steel wheels, the labor runs about .3 hours per wheel.

If this system is used to balance the gear using aluminum wheels, the labor runs about .4 hours per wheel. The difference being that the aluminum wheels also used a bullet cap.

Andy
Andy,
There were other questions Wheel Interested had that were not addressed. Is there an AS recommended interval between having the running gear balanced ? You mention that it is either balanced or not.... how can it be determined if it is (Balanced) other than the obvious (having them checked on the tool shown in the pictures you attached) ? But.... after you do this how does one know it is balanced and how long it will stay that way ??
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Old 07-18-2007, 04:51 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 64Vette
Andy,
There were other questions Wheel Interested had that were not addressed. Is there an AS recommended interval between having the running gear balanced ? You mention that it is either balanced or not.... how can it be determined if it is (Balanced) other than the obvious (having them checked on the tool shown in the pictures you attached) ? But.... after you do this how does one know it is balanced and how long it will stay that way ??
Balancing running gear regardless of use, be it a travel trailer, motor home, car, or truck, should be balanced every 10,000 miles.

That's something that most every tire shop, etc, recommends.

If it's ever been balanced, look for lead weights.

How long will it stay in balance, is an excellent question.

How many times will you skid the tires?

The only way it can be stated is that "under normal" use, balancing should be checked/done every 10,000 miles.

Every Airstream should have a major brake job every 10,000 miles or once a year, which ever is first. At "that time" the balancing can be checked. If it's still ok, then great. If not, then rebalancing should be done.

All too many sales/servicing dealers are not interested in balancing anything other than their check books. Therefore they will usually say, "you don't need it." How false a statement that is, coming from a dealer. There isn't one of them that would drive a car one mile, with unbalanced running gear, nor would any RV owner.

So why would they say that about your Airstream?

Usually because they do not wish to make the investment in balancing equipment.

I chose to balance the running gear on travel trailers over 40 years ago.

I worked for a dealer in San Antonio back then that had a rental fleet of 50 Shasta travel trailers. After the summer was over (the peak of them being rented) it was uncanny as to how much damage happened to the sheet metal. I talked to the owner about balancing. He said "HELL NO." So I made a deal with him. I said I would like to balance just 10 of them, for the next season, so that we could have a fair test. He thought about it, and said ok.

Next seasonal trips came about in short order. Amazingly, the trailers that had balanced running gear, had "ZERO" damage, but, the other 40 did.

The owner called me for a meeting. He said "The entire rental fleet that does not have balanced running gear, is GROUNDED." How fast can you get the other 40 balanced? I replyed, in a couple of days. He said "GREAT. GET BUSY."

That time frame was 1966 and 1967.

The problem has not gone away, and it never will, until the simple matter of physics is addresses by RV owners.

Balancing the running gear, saves the owner "money" and all to many times, "big money."

Yet, to this day, the controversy continues.

Why, I would ask you?

Is it because the owners don't care, or, is it because they are not riding in the trailer, or because they have tons of money to spend on needless and unnecessary and avoidable repairs?

Dealers love to repair the trailers that were damaged because of unbalanced running gear. But they still refuse to invest in the proper balancing equipment.

Maybe the owners should get together and only purchase their trailers from dealers who can do balancing. Then at least the owner would know, that when it came time to rebalance, he could go back to his selling dealer.

How sweet that would be, for every owner.

But, that some solution would reduce the dealers shop work load. Hmmm.

Which is better, which is worse, and for who?

Points to ponder?

Absolutely.

Andy
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Old 07-18-2007, 05:04 PM   #18
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LocTite

Lots of things to consider for the cause…. However here is a short term solution – when it works is way out next time, put a bit of LocTite on the pin and lightly tap it back into position using a block of wood. This was happening to my Safari and after the LocTite the pin stayed in place for the next 30,000 miles!

Rick
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Old 07-18-2007, 05:34 PM   #19
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That's where the money is

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inland RV Center, In
... Dealers love to repair the trailers that were damaged because of unbalanced running gear. But they still refuse to invest in the proper balancing equipment....
Most RV owners don't end up with enough miles after the initial "rush of purchase camping" to realize the damage being caused.

Nowadays, if I was running an RV dealership, I would have to consider the amount of money to be made from after-warranty repairs when considering preemptive service tools.

Tom
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Old 07-18-2007, 05:49 PM   #20
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My tires are balanced; the top hinge pin still worked out. I was advised on this forum to use LockTite.... Pull the hinge pin up a ways. Coat the hinge pin with LockTite and drive it down.

My hinge pin has stayed in 3 years now.
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