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Old 04-25-2008, 09:44 AM   #61
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Well, this is a serendipitous thread to come across. We pick our 08 27' Classic up next Tuesday. 2Air was helpful to us in another post (about tonneau covers) and I can see that he - and the rest of you - have given us some very good pointers on what to watch for.

Funny too, because one of the prime reasons we are exiting our year old '07 Gulf Stream VCM is GS's worse than poor build & QC. We've had the RV for just over a hear and the rig has been unavailable to us for over 1/4 of a year.

We sat inside the new AS last weekend and opened and closed most everything with hardly any problems seen. It was unfortunate that these trailers have to be stored w/o batt or umbilical hookup - can't precheck anything electrical.

Now my eyes are educated to be looking for things that we wouldn't have had reason to watch. Thanks everybody. Will post the results of our inspection and first couple nights in a week or so.

Bill
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Old 04-25-2008, 09:59 AM   #62
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As an update to our earlier post. We had the same problem with the LP detector randomly beeping with the gas shut off, had to disconnect it. No leaks or other problems and we still love it.
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Old 04-25-2008, 11:39 AM   #63
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DITTO to the LP detector randomly beeping.....any thoughts 2air?
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Old 04-25-2008, 12:10 PM   #64
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I'm relying on memory, always a risky venture, but doesn't the propane detector beep occasionally to let us know it works, but when there's propane, it goes off all the time? I need to look at the literature on it to check when I have some time to do so.

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Old 04-25-2008, 01:06 PM   #65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene
I'm relying on memory, always a risky venture, but doesn't the propane detector beep occasionally to let us know it works, but when there's propane, it goes off all the time? I need to look at the literature on it to check when I have some time to do so.

Gene
It is not suppose to have an audible alarm unless there is gas present in the RV. Typically a green blinking light lets you know it's on and working. The blinking LED light changes color, I think to orange if the alarm goes off.

My 04 occasionally does go off and there is no LP in the area, though one time I did have my bros with me and we had chili and beer. Perhaps that flammable gas set it off that one time.....seriously!
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Old 05-16-2008, 11:13 PM   #66
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2008 27 FB Classic - 3 week report

Short: we love it.

Long: like everything you come to love there are a few bumps along the way. The dealer has a knowledgeable sales force - lots of tidbits & fair bargaining (thanks Erica K at Geo Sutton). Not sure yet about Sutton's service department.

The rig was well explained during our almost 2.5 hr intro. For those not familiar with RVing, it is going to seem overwhelming. (Hooking up to the tow vehicle was a bit overwhelming as they put that on the end of the fam tour)

The workmanship is head and shoulders above the POS Gulf Stream Vista Mini Cruiser we got rid of to buy our A/S. Everything seemed to work and the exterior skin was clean and rivets were unscarred.

We've had a couple little items that were fixed and a couple that I'm still scratching my head about (why did they put a toilet in whose seat scares the @#%& out of you when (males) use for the first time and it suddenly decides to descend. The temp solution hasn't worked either - swivel the toilet base several inches in a different direction.

Today while dropping the trailer at short term storage (long way from home) the electrically driven tongue jack decided to short out mid way and for a brief while we thought we were semi stranded. A telephone call to the service manager at our dealer yielded that maybe a ground screw had come loose. Before I got too involved in sleuthing the prob (it wasn't the fuse) I performed the universal "first move" of repair: I smacked the post/motor housing with my hand. For now the jack works.

There's more for those wanting the finer details but it is late and we are weary. Not used to 100 degree dry camping in SoCal.

Bill
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Old 05-17-2008, 09:53 AM   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferry360
Short: we love it.
Today while dropping the trailer at short term storage (long way from home) the electrically driven tongue jack decided to short out mid way and for a brief while we thought we were semi stranded. A telephone call to the service manager at our dealer yielded that maybe a ground screw had come loose. Before I got too involved in sleuthing the prob (it wasn't the fuse) I performed the universal "first move" of repair: I smacked the post/motor housing with my hand. For now the jack works.
Bill
Bill; I had similiar issues with our tongue jack on the way home after delivery. It would intermittently quit. Upon wiggling the wires, it would ultimately start working. After arriving home we put it into storage until several weeks ago. Going over it and prepping it for this season, low and behold the jack acted up for the last time. Because the motor head (shorted) and is over $100, there is a time consuming process going through AS for a replacement under warranty. I was very tempted to take the jack head apart, but didn't. New head installed with a more quiet motor and no more intermittent jack issues. Long story short, problems don't fix themselves and usually surface at inconvenent times. Good luck and enjoyable travels,
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Old 05-17-2008, 10:15 AM   #68
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Another problem that can cause the jack to malfunction is located under the propane cover. The wire for the jack—it comes straight from the battery—and the wires from the umbilical to the truck connection, are under the cover and rest on the tongue. Eventually the cover wears the insulation off the wires, first the jack wire, and eventually can wear the insulation on the umbilical (it does have tubing protecting it). If it wears through the jack wire, it will short out the batteries as well as the jack. It will start as an intermittent problem. If it wears through the umbilical, you can lose brake and turn signals, courtesy lights, charging, etc.

Some people cut a "mouse hole" in the cover. I think that can weaken the cover unless you reinforce the cover. I placed a 3/4" pipe clamp over the wires after I placed a lot of electrical tape around the wires, drilled a couple of holes in the tongue and screwed it down with some wood screws. The insulation was beginning to wear off the jack wire after about 2,000 miles towing when I discovered the problem—it's described elsewhere on the Forum. Others reroute the wires, the best solution, but I didn't want to take the time to do so and plan to present it to the dealer when I bring the trailer in for warranty claims.

This is a dumb design flaw on a lot of models for at least several years. Best to correct it now.

Gene
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Old 05-17-2008, 10:36 AM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene
Another problem that can cause the jack to malfunction is located under the propane cover. The wire for the jack—it comes straight from the battery—and the wires from the umbilical to the truck connection, are under the cover and rest on the tongue. Eventually the cover wears the insulation off the wires, first the jack wire, and eventually can wear the insulation on the umbilical (it does have tubing protecting it). If it wears through the jack wire, it will short out the batteries as well as the jack. It will start as an intermittent problem. If it wears through the umbilical, you can lose brake and turn signals, courtesy lights, charging, etc.

Some people cut a "mouse hole" in the cover. I think that can weaken the cover unless you reinforce the cover. I placed a 3/4" pipe clamp over the wires after I placed a lot of electrical tape around the wires, drilled a couple of holes in the tongue and screwed it down with some wood screws. The insulation was beginning to wear off the jack wire after about 2,000 miles towing when I discovered the problem—it's described elsewhere on the Forum. Others reroute the wires, the best solution, but I didn't want to take the time to do so and plan to present it to the dealer when I bring the trailer in for warranty claims.

This is a dumb design flaw on a lot of models for at least several years. Best to correct it now.

Gene
Excellent point Gene. Upon delivery, I too noticed the impression on the wiring harness pinched between the a-frame and propane cover. That area is where I wiggled the wires to get the jack operating. My quick fix solution for this poor design flaw was to install jam nuts on the underside fo the propane cover to prevent contact and maintain a secure cover. Larry
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Old 05-17-2008, 10:49 AM   #70
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Larry, glad you saw that. These trailers come to us in Colorado with more than a 1,000 miles on them, something I keep forgetting when I keep track of the miles on the unit. There may be a break in the conductor inside the insulation on the jack wire on your Classic.

Gene
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Old 05-17-2008, 11:10 AM   #71
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrawfordGene
Larry, glad you saw that. These trailers come to us in Colorado with more than a 1,000 miles on them, something I keep forgetting when I keep track of the miles on the unit. There may be a break in the conductor inside the insulation on the jack wire on your Classic.

Gene
Thanks Gene, there was fraying and I rewired using sodercon connectors (male/female bullet conntectors in case I decide to re-route later). I'm sure the arching led to the motor shorting out. I'm just glad it occurred while I was going over everything. We're anxious to use it and have no regrets. That said, I'm generally saddened by the detoriating quality, workmanship and pride of all manufactured production products particularly when it comes to "detail". It's amazing what you find when you do your own maintenance and prechecks. As long as I discover and correct discrepancies properly, I'm a happy camper! Thanks for your input, Larry
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Old 05-17-2008, 01:18 PM   #72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lsinclair
... I'm sure the arching led to the motor shorting out...
there are pix of what can happen here...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/515931-post14.html

and a variety of repairs including this one...

http://www.airforums.com/forums/516150-post38.html

the cutout has little (NO) effect on the tank cover structurally.

this is an issue that spans MANY years of production...

and while buyers may be unaware until something bad happens,

the company knows about this...

there is no excuse for passing this defect on to the customers.

cheers

2air'
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Old 05-17-2008, 02:40 PM   #73
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Rivet helpful fix

Hi 2air',

Thanks to your post about the fire hazard with the tank cover rubbing on the wires, I mentioned my concern to Patrick at Colonial AS prior to our sked p/u. I was very pleased with the solution he devised:

He cut a bit of sturdy plastic tubing, just under a 1/2" in height, and installed it between the tank bracket and the cover structure. It works beautifully!

I agree this should have been taken care of by the factory, but am happy with the solution that Patrick came up with

I don't know how to do pics yet, but will try to post one later if it is needed to visualize this fix.
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Old 05-17-2008, 09:43 PM   #74
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Good description and pics 2air. Also a professional looking modification. In your pic I see your wiring harness for the jack but not the trailer power cord.
Because of the contact I saw on both of my harnesses, I've double jam nutted the rod to a sufficient position so that when the propane cover is installed and tighten against the jam nuts there is enough clearance at the bottom to prevent any further damage. As always, I appreciate your valuable input. Larry
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Old 05-17-2008, 11:59 PM   #75
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Zap!

Quote:
Originally Posted by lsinclair
there was fraying and I rewired using sodercon connectors (male/female bullet conntectors in case I decide to re-route later).
Larry, there are so many types of connectors, I can't remember the names of them all. I think I've seen these, but can't recall whether they are waterproof.

Unless the batteries are disconnected in the winter, snow and ice will build up and might cause a short. Moisture can build up in the connectors and lot of rain can also cause a short to the tongue—which is the ground. It's best to replace the whole wire, although there are (or used to be) connectors that seal around the insulation at a splice.

All the solutions to this problem have a flaw because the wires move—any wire that passes through a confined space that is made of a material harder than the insulation, will eventually wear through the insulation. Grommets, where they fit, pretty much solve that for a long while. It seems to me the wires should be routed under the tongue and attached to it with plastic clamps. The jack wire should be wrapped in the type of covering that comes with the umbilical (I can't remember the name of that either). This may be overkill, but electrical shorts are devilish to find and can be expensive in their effects.

I haven't gone through all the wiring in my trailer, but I've seen pictures on the Forum of Romex (120 v) and 12 v wires routed through holes or over fiberboard without grommets or other protection. Sharp edges and electrical wires in a structure that moves and flexes bother me. What about the wires between the inner and outer skin that we never see? It all goes through metal part that can have sharp edges. Although I've rewired substantial parts of a number of houses, vehicle wiring is another thing—it's strange to me and much more complex in its design. With lots of expensive electronic parts and two different voltages interconnected in something that moves there are potential problems. Other than the wheels, axles and brakes and the hitch, electrical is the most dangerous component. Well, propane is another—all those pipes—do they go through the body without being protected? How are they routed inside? One really dumb problem that has never been fixed—the jack wire and the umbilical wiring—makes me worry about the problems I haven't looked for, yet.

I have read about Airstreams catching on fire, or people touching the outer skin and getting a shock. I don't think there's a lot of that happening, but it's still something to worry about.

I guess I sound like nervous Nellie. I haven't made the time to go through our trailer and look for problems, but I think it's worth doing (and a pain to do).

Gene
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Old 05-18-2008, 11:50 AM   #76
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As has been the case with all my posts, this newbie is once again impressed and grateful for the response - especially to the problem with the potential problems with the wiring around the tongue jack. When we go to retrieve the trailer next week I will give the propane cover, the attendant wiring and more a good look. Thanks to all: 2air, Gene, Larry & Sandy and the rest.

Bill
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:12 PM   #77
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Gene;
If what you can readily see is flawed, it raises serious doubt about what you can't see. I'm optimistic but have also become skeptical with some of todays products.
As far as wiring goes, I use heat shrink connectors, tubing and cold shrink tape exclusively. It cost a little more, but what you pay is relative to what you get. I use a heat gun for a professional job, but a lighter or other heat source also works. I've found the following link to be useful and with very competive pricing. Del City - Wiring Products and Professional Electrical Supplies
Another item I've depended on are the weatherproof circuit breakers, 20 - 200 amps. I prefer the manual reset ones. If it trips, I want to find out why!
Attached are a few pics of the foregoing. With your background, this may be nothing new...but...just in case. Larry
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Old 05-18-2008, 09:36 PM   #78
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Larry, it's been a long, long time since I used those heat shrink connectors—I think they were new then. Good to see the pix. The tape I'm familiar with.

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Old 05-24-2008, 11:34 AM   #79
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An update to our problem mentioned earlier about the intermittent hitch jack operation.

Prior to picking our unit back up from storage we called the dealer (Geo Sutton) and all they could promise is a half hour reimbursement IF the problem was discovered to be in the jack (otherwise bring the unit into the nearest dealer - 2 hr away).

When we went back to pick up our AS from the storage yard we called a tech recommended by the RV park. I could have predicted what would happen: couldn't get the jack to misfire - went up and down everytime. The tech did expose the wiring and indeed, although not frayed thru, the impact of the propane cover rubbing on the wiring harness could be seen. The tech cut a piece of plastic flex (the ribbed stuff used to cover wiring) and gave us temp protection from rubbing.

The repair man also said that this kind of jack has a heat sensitive relay that will pop until the relay cools. It is possible that it cut out the day we dropped the AS as it was close to 100 degrees out and since the trailer is too new to us to have our hitch/unhitch routine down, we did have to play with it a bit to get the unhitch sequence (w/ Equalizer bars) to happen.

We're currently in San Diego and had no problem unhitching here but still don't have faith in the hitch jack given I feel the source of the problem was never confirmed.

Thanks to the pix and hints how to get a more permanent fix to the rubbing. We're going to be here long enough to find a place that can cut a small radius for the wiring to pass thru and at least minimize any future short problems.

Bill
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Old 05-25-2008, 12:33 AM   #80
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferry360
We've had a couple little items that were fixed and a couple that I'm still scratching my head about (why did they put a toilet in whose seat scares the @#%& out of you when (males) use for the first time and it suddenly decides to descend. The temp solution hasn't worked either - swivel the toilet base several inches in a different direction.
DH has the same complaint. I was thinking of trying glueing magnets to the inside of the lids and placing another on the wall. I have no idea if that would work, possibly be too weak to hold or so strong as to grab everything metal in the bathroom and he's really gonna have a fit when I put my fluffy cover on!

When you use the jack are you cautious to stop employing the switch just as soon as it is all the way extended or retracted?
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