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Old 02-07-2011, 04:33 AM   #1
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Hydraulic leveling system.

Hi All;
My idle days since my accident have placed my brain in overdrive. Aside of having to install a window in a door next week, I am considering building a hydraulic leveling system for my 26' Argosy. Having a 6" frame we have machined four aluminum billet single acting cylinders with 4" stroke. Those will be bolted in vertical position to the frame. We have utilized four 1.5" dia. pistons with 3/4" SS rods from a unit for marine application. When in closed position the 3/4" dia. rods will be flush with belly pan. Hydraulic lines will be contained within the belly pan. To individually control the pistons I intend to use Peter-Paul 12 Volt hydraulic solenoids which will be activated by a joystick simultaneously with the hydraulic pump. I intend to build a aluminum adjustable stands to meet piston rod. The problem I am having is finding a small single acting 12 Volt hydraulic pump to operate the pistons. I have searched the Internet to no avail. Does anyone know where can I find one? Thank you, "Boatdoc"
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Old 02-07-2011, 06:29 AM   #2
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Have you checked the advertisers in "Lowrider" magazine?
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Old 02-07-2011, 07:45 AM   #3
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Will that kind of leveling system 'twist' your coach frame? If I get my stabilizers off one iota I cannot open the door. Glad you are recovering. Your getting into trouble....a good sign.
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Old 02-07-2011, 07:58 AM   #4
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use one like is used on slideouts
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Old 02-07-2011, 08:16 AM   #5
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I checked Grainger. They have pumps. The motors are separate.I could not find a decent sized 12V motor to drive a hydraulic pump.
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Old 02-07-2011, 09:35 AM   #6
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Have you considered a 3 point system to eliminate the possibility for twisting? One ram at the tongue and one on each side, directly between the tires?

A side beneft...it sure would be easy to change a flat or grease the bearings!
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Old 02-07-2011, 10:23 AM   #7
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dump trailers have a 12v pump on them, the farm next to my home has some big ones they haul dirt and gravel on big loads and they have a 12v pump on them to dump the loads.
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Old 02-07-2011, 10:31 AM   #8
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There are integrated motor/pump/reservoir assemblies available. Do a search on "12v hydraulic power unit" or "12v hydraulic power pack" and you'll get many hits.
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Old 02-07-2011, 10:33 AM   #9
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If you want to improvise you can look for convertible top pumps at a junkyard. The Chrysler Sebring and Lebaron convertibles both used hydraulics for the top and I believe many others have as well.
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Old 02-07-2011, 04:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreshAir View Post
Will that kind of leveling system 'twist' your coach frame? If I get my stabilizers off one iota I cannot open the door. Glad you are recovering. Your getting into trouble....a good sign.
Neil
Hi Neal;
You are correct. Despite the fact that my frame is 2" X 6" X 0.125" Stainless Steel tubing, it will twist. This I am well aware of. My system will be able to work two pistons simultaneously, two in the front or two in the back. In addition I will have ability to operate them individually as well, for minute fine tuning. Each piston will operated via normally closed 12V electrical solenoid. I will be able to open one, two or all solenoids at the same time. Level gages at front and back would be sufficient to fine tune the level side to side first. Front to back two pistons can be operated simultaneously to raise or lower.
My problem is finding a low enough volume pump in 1800 Psi to operate my pistons at slow rate so that I can have a better control. Dump truck pumps will fill 1.500"dia. X 4.00" stroke in a matter of a one second, and my old fingers are not that fast anymore. Thanks, "Boatdoc"
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Old 02-07-2011, 04:52 PM   #11
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Old 02-07-2011, 07:37 PM   #12
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Why re-invent the wheel?

There is only one company that manufactures a MADE IN AMERICA, fully self-contained, ready to install hydraulic leveling system for RVs. That company is HWH, Inc. of Moscow, IA, where they design and fabricate almost 100% of their products; including their own steel and electronics!

Their systems are available in either manual or automatic models for self-leveling and ALL of their systems use their patented 'bi-axis' leveling system which uses jacks in pairs so as to totally avoid any frame flex or twist. I have seen 3-jack systems pop windshields and break wall/roof seams open on large motor homes from frame twist. HWH 4-piston systems NEVER do this...they just level your RV!

If you're not familiar with these systems, you should check out their web site. And please don't tell me that they are expensive..........YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR!
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Old 02-07-2011, 08:18 PM   #13
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Totally confused here. My Excella says to only lift the trailer at the jacking points, clearly marked on the frame behind the rear axle. Only. The other 4 jack type things are to be used just for "stabilizing" so the trailer don' be rockin'... Are you suggesting to us newbies it's okay to put a hydrulic jack anywhere on our trailer and raisethe trailer off the ground anywhere? Or is there a motorhome response in there. Please clarify.
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Old 02-07-2011, 08:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NevadaGeo View Post
Totally confused here. My Excella says to only lift the trailer at the jacking points, clearly marked on the frame behind the rear axle. Only. The other 4 jack type things are to be used just for "stabilizing" so the trailer don' be rockin'... Are you suggesting to us newbies it's okay to put a hydrulic jack anywhere on our trailer and raisethe trailer off the ground anywhere? Or is there a motorhome response in there. Please clarify.
Nevada,

Just to clarify,

This proposal WILL NOT WORK on any stock Airstream trailer! Boatdoc has created a 6" stainless steel frame for his Argosy and he wants to use hydraulics for leveling this trailer. Hydraulic leveling will work because of the strength of his custom frame. It is also very effective in leveling motor homes with their very strong steel frames.

The difference here is in the strength of the trailer or motor home frame. Stock Airstream trailers can only use the stabilizers to do just that; STABILIZE the trailer AFTER it has been leveled, not to level the trailer initially. You should carry wood pieces or plastic leveling blocks for that purpose.

Sort of like apples and oranges........or maybe kumquats
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