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Old 08-09-2007, 09:46 PM   #1
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1969 31' Sovereign
Cogan Station , Pennsylvania
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Questions about Jacking for inspection and repair

Hello everyone,

I am new here. I just registered and started reading/writing posts a few days ago.

I have a 1969 31' Sovereign and I need to get it off the ground enough to have comfortable working room. I have spent hours reading the many threads about jacking up an AS, but I guess I still need some comforting.

This is what I have gathered in simple terms:
1. Block under the "A" frame in the front
2. jack using bottle jacks between tires on the frame(jack stands after)
3. support the rear end of the trailer for stability only

So am I to assume that you can actually lift the entire camper from between the wheels on the frame? I would like to have 24" or so from ground level for good elbow room while working.

I apologize if these questions have been asked and answered a million times before, I guess I am just looking for some reassurance that this IS the proper way. I have read a few horror stories on the forums about jacking/lifting improperly.

Thanks much!
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Old 08-09-2007, 09:59 PM   #2
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1954 29' Liner
Orange , California
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badelson
Hello everyone,

I am new here. I just registered and started reading/writing posts a few days ago.

I have a 1969 31' Sovereign and I need to get it off the ground enough to have comfortable working room. I have spent hours reading the many threads about jacking up an AS, but I guess I still need some comforting.

This is what I have gathered in simple terms:
1. Block under the "A" frame in the front
2. jack using bottle jacks between tires on the frame(jack stands after)
3. support the rear end of the trailer for stability only

So am I to assume that you can actually lift the entire camper from between the wheels on the frame? I would like to have 24" or so from ground level for good elbow room while working.

I apologize if these questions have been asked and answered a million times before, I guess I am just looking for some reassurance that this IS the proper way. I have read a few horror stories on the forums about jacking/lifting improperly.

Thanks much!
I would use wood ramps to get the height that you need and leave the trailer attached to the tow vehicle.

Blll
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Old 08-09-2007, 10:15 PM   #3
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1969 31' Sovereign
Cogan Station , Pennsylvania
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 34
See, I have to remove all of the wheels and rebuild all of the brakes, maybe more. The situation dictates that I have to do all of them at once. So, if I could lift it up and not have to set it down until all repairs are done, this would be great. As far as the other stuff, I may need to remove the belly cover a bit to inspect and posssibly repair other potential problems.

Long story, but the reality is that I need to get it off the ground for a good 1 month period and still be able to go in and out of the camper at will. I do not have the luxury to keep it hitched to my truck over that period of time. Unfortunately the camper is an hour drive away, so I have to maximize each trip.
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Old 08-09-2007, 10:44 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badelson
... I guess I am just looking for some reassurance that this IS the proper way. I have read a few horror stories on the forums about jacking/lifting improperly....
greeting ira

the correct answer is in this thread...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/f457...eam-18435.html

just select one

cheers
2air'
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Old 08-10-2007, 09:05 AM   #5
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Danielsville , Georgia
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In my not so humble opinion (IMNSHO), I would definitely use 6" x 6" lumber to achieve the working clearance you desire (may not give you 24" but I'd be really uncomfortable raising it much higher and being underneath it) but from my experience, will give you plenty of room to work and inspect. (Trust me, I've spent hours under them.).

As for rebuilding brakes on a '69 with original axles (again, speaking from experience), I cannot imagine a bigger waste of time or money. I did it once on a '72 Overlander and really wished I'd just put new axles on it (or left it alone). With the '73 Sovereign, I replaced the entire running gear, which gave me new suspension, brakes, and NeverLube hubs, not to mention brake drums with studs rather than threaded bolt holes (for my new aluminum rims).

Even with removing wheels while elevated, you can accomplish the "lift" with the 6" x 6" ramps on one axle, while using jackstands to stabilize the rest of the coach.

New axles aren't that big of a deal. I replaced mine with Dexter 3600 lb axles for less than $1000. Modifications were minimal. But it addresses a host of issues and should give another 15-20 years of service.

(3 years ago, I would have fought that advice, but after piecemeal approaches which added up $$ over time, I've finally seen the light!)

PM me if you have any questions.

PizzaChop photos
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Old 08-10-2007, 01:38 PM   #6
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1969 31' Sovereign
Cogan Station , Pennsylvania
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Posts: 34
Hey, thanks for the reply.

PizzaChop, I noticed your pictures and read through your thread. Lots of good stuff there. As I said in my original post, I realize that these questions have been answered many times before. Yet, for some reason I was still unsettled about the idea of bending or contorting the old girl and causing serious damage. I have plenty of experience in jacking and cribbing buildings, so the safety of what I need to do is a factor, but I believe that I can do it without too much trouble. I will create a good solid footing to crib upon.

As for the axles, well, I would like to drop the G and get new ones, but if I can safely rebuild things, that would be best as far as my budget is concerned. I need to get this camper to Pennsylvania, 8 hours away. After that, she sits for a few years until the time comes to completely restore her. If things look to be in bad shape, I will follow your advice.

I'll post some pics on Monday if I manage to get it jacked up.

Thanks again!
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