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Old 01-14-2011, 07:30 AM   #141
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
slaughters , Kentucky
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 21
Hello again about the tag axle brakes,

Yes, the feeling that you might need a little more braking power has caused me to have some bad dreams. Now we know how the 18 wheelers feel with the big rigs. But, essentially the 345 is a big bus and we need to allow time and space between us and the people in front. And, on secondary roads I drive fairly slow as well.

The tags help but they are only an assistance. They need to be adjusted so that they do not lock because when they slide they are not braking very much, but they certainly should be able to lock.

The tag axle magnets are color coded for power; the NAPA guys should know about the codes. Wimpy magnets are useless.

Drive carefully,

Joe
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Old 01-14-2011, 10:22 AM   #142
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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Thanks Cooperhawk, the dogs are sweet, the M/h... not so much... yet!

Choctawmel, wow, thats a mess under there... I have heard many tales of the rats nest of wires... now I see!

Joe, thanks for the info. Can you ever have too much brakes? I will do a brake check after I have the smog stuff all up to spec, and this sounds like a good upgrade.
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:00 PM   #143
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
Silverton , Colorado
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After having to spend a lot of $ on the tag axle brakes, I did what the po did...cut the lines and just added more time to my travel...a bit of a concern over the mountain passes, but once you get past the pucker factor that at 3300 rpms, the tranny shifts into 2nd gear without your permission, you learn to adjust...we have replaced them twice in 5 years, and the last time they failed was when one of the retaining springs broke...about a year old, so past the warranty...drive slower, live longer...m
AND, you get to be one of those folks that used to be in front of you when you were an in-hurry teen!
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Old 01-15-2011, 08:47 AM   #144
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1986 34.5' Airstream 345
choctaw , Oklahoma
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I have the 'Roadmaster' toad brake also. It's a pain to get in, but better that pain then the pain and destruction of running over someone. Don't think I'd operate the 'Silver Bullet' if I was aware all the brakes weren't working. Heaven forbid I was to have an accident and injure/kill someone. The legal consequences would be savior.
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Old 01-15-2011, 09:59 AM   #145
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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As I plan to upgrade the hitch, and pull a Toad and probably my 5000lb Jeep Grand Cherokee, i need all the brakes working good and a Toad brake!

The recent rain we had here in California gave me a chance to search for water leaks...
1/ A wet patch in the curbside bedroom closet is most likely from the damaged skin, but I need to reseal the roof vents as the sealant is cracked on everything up there! Anyone got advice?
2/ The carpet on the pass side front window was damp, but the channel and window seals need doing, so I plan to get those.
3/ Water on the dash, so will need to reseal the windshield upper.
4/ No sign of leak, but unsightly, the rear window seal is weathered and pulled out... I have heard horror stories about trying to seperate the frame to replace the seal, as its impossible to get the frame back together after correctly.
How should I fix this?
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Old 01-15-2011, 05:40 PM   #146
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
Silverton , Colorado
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There is a site for window seal repair, and Andy can help you, there...there is also a site for hitch upgrade...great pics, and the guy in Austin, TX did a 10K re-adjustment of our tow capacity...we now have a 4600 Nissan Maxima behind us, and while the mountain passes are intimidating, the flat tow places...well...they're flat tow...the downloaded pics will save you a bundle, and they will help your mechanic in understanding what he wants to do...worth it, in my view, as I had my tag axles clipped last year...the continual failure was just too expensive...m
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Old 01-15-2011, 05:56 PM   #147
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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I did look in the windows section for info on resealing, but was not sure if the M/H and Trailer windows are the same.

I have a bunch of pictures saved of what people have done to upgrade the hitch to 10k, so I have a good idea on the plan. I have a welder, but planning to let a Pro Welder buddy of mine do that job to be sure!
For the sake of interest, here is how my underside looks at the moment...
Bent wheels and all!
Note, that my skids are completely different to anything else I have ever seen!


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Old 01-15-2011, 06:11 PM   #148
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
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Interesting pics...I have 'skid' brackets...somewhat worn over the years but still able to handle the steeper inclines...so far...I would prefer rollers, and have seen them attached, but just haven't gotten 'round to it, yet...another reason to park on the street till the Sheriff tells ya to move...
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Old 01-15-2011, 06:15 PM   #149
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My plan was pretty similar to what others have done.
I planned to drop the tow hitch and clean it up, and then add a, extension from the hitch tube about 3 feet, and then tie that to a new crossmember. Two diagonal bars would tie this to the new extended rails bolted to the M/H chassis legs. These will extend forward to the gas tank and I would like to add a rail under the tank to protect the rear edge.

I have been looking for replacement wheels that could handle the job better and these are the best I have found so far..
Cast iron centered, with solid rubber tire, and rated for 2,500lb.
Florida Casters and Wheels, Inc.*::*Wheels*::*Rubber Tread Wheels Product Line*::*MH Heavy Duty Mold-On Rubber: up to 2500 lbs.*::*Heavy Duty Mold-On Rubber on Iron Core Wheels
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Old 01-16-2011, 12:45 AM   #150
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1982 28' Airstream 280
Port Angeles , Washington
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyair View Post
My plan was pretty similar to what others have done.
I planned to drop the tow hitch and clean it up, and then add a, extension from the hitch tube about 3 feet, and then tie that to a new crossmember. Two diagonal bars would tie this to the new extended rails bolted to the M/H chassis legs. These will extend forward to the gas tank and I would like to add a rail under the tank to protect the rear edge.

I have been looking for replacement wheels that could handle the job better and these are the best I have found so far..
Cast iron centered, with solid rubber tire, and rated for 2,500lb.
Florida Casters and Wheels, Inc.*::*Wheels*::*Rubber Tread Wheels Product Line*::*MH Heavy Duty Mold-On Rubber: up to 2500 lbs.*::*Heavy Duty Mold-On Rubber on Iron Core Wheels
If you really want some effective drag wheels you might consider some heavy casters. I don't know about you but when going in or out of driveways where I scrape I'm usually turning. As much overhang as these coaches have that is a lot of scuffing on a rigid mounted wheel. Might almost be as good to mount a flat plate with the leading and trailing edges curved up. I don't think it would make much difference to the coach. As long as the plate was 4" or 5" square it probably wouldn't make much difference to the pavement either.

Cheers, Dan
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Old 01-16-2011, 03:24 PM   #151
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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Very good info and a better idea.
If I decide to go the caster route, what rating should I look for?
It would need to be high.. 5000lb each?
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Old 01-16-2011, 04:37 PM   #152
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1995 28' Excella
1989 34' Excella
1986 31' Sovereign
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Athens , Georgia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keyair
Mine is an 84. I will post a pic of mine later today...
Found it! Wow! Thanks. I now know what it does. I thought it was for my CB lol.
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Old 01-17-2011, 02:12 AM   #153
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1982 28' Airstream 280
Port Angeles , Washington
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Originally Posted by Keyair View Post
Very good info and a better idea.
If I decide to go the caster route, what rating should I look for?
It would need to be high.. 5000lb each?
If you went to 5000lb casters you could lift the whole rear of the coach, of coarse then you would be stuck because the drive wheels would be in the air. I've got two big casters on mine from the PO that I'm going to remove when I get a chance. I have a rear bath so the tanks are there and the casters are right at the bumper and really look strange. When I drag the stern it sounds and feels like skid plates anyway. I need to beef up my hitch but I have to work around the tanks. When I get to it I'll mount a skid plate on the hitch, it's to lowest point. It sits so low I've even thought about recessing it into the bumper. If I can raise the hitch a couple of inches I could eliminate 90% of the tail dragging. Just thinking.

Cheers, Dan
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Old 01-18-2011, 05:02 PM   #154
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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Yes, you are correct, I am sure that a 5000lb caster is heavy duty, but I am concerned about the "Shock load" involved when the rear of the coach hits the ground... most likely with just one of them. I felt that 5000lb might not be enough!

I am spread a little thin and have lots on on top of the Airstream the last month...

My latest worry is batteries...
I have 2 Interstate Megatron Marine Deepcycles as the Coach Batteries.
From the paperwork I got with the rig, looks like they are 3 years old.
Stupidly I left something on last month and deep discharged them down to dead.
I have no 120V at my storage, so pulled them off and recharged them at home using my new BatteryMINDER charger/desulfator.

One of them came back ok, and I just checked it after a week of resting here and it is reading 12.6V.
The other is not good, shows 10.5V and a check of the SG in all the cells tells me one is dead, and reads very low SG.

I posted over in the battery section, and the news is not good.
So, with a battery replacement or replacements on the cards, I need advice!

Here is how my compartment looked with batteries installed...


Pulling them out told me I got issues....




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Old 01-18-2011, 05:19 PM   #155
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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So, I am gonna need new batteries AND to repair the tray!
With reference to Brad's thread here:
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f311...air-57991.html

I am not alone!

My thoughts were...
1/ Remove the tool storage area and move the Chassis battery to the front or rear(maybe fwd).
2/ Cut out all the rotton steelwork, and weld a stronger "dropped floor" in place.
3/ Replace the original drawer slides with some fresh 500lb rated slides.

Now, from what I see, the drawer is 9"D X 40"L X 16W(To bodyside curve).





I am trying to figure out what batteries to use, because they will dictate the depth.
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Old 01-18-2011, 06:41 PM   #156
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1986 34.5' Airstream 345
Key West , Florida
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 167
The cheep ones are T-105 6volt. You will need 4 of them to have a good 3 days with out starting your gen if you plan on running your heat/lights etc. The down side is thy are heavy 62lb each or 248lb for the bank.
If money is no worry you could put in a Lithium Ion bank. I have used this company many times and I like there product "Thunder Sky". You will need to make some changes to your rig the big one is a charge control. The controller will run about $400+ the batteries $1,000 and smart charger $250++++.
I used some 2 year old gel batteries that were never used for the time being but plan on putting the Thunder sky in ares. I plan on having a stainless steel tank company make all new trays for ares. I found it to be the least expensive and best way to go 316ss so thy will be the last part of the rig to dissolve At a cost of about $120 per. Re using the front (the aluminum part).


T-105 batt

Thunder Sky
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Old 01-18-2011, 08:51 PM   #157
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
Silverton , Colorado
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We have two 29 series AGMs for house, and an Optima AGM(red) for the chassis, and plan to add two more 29s in the future...the AGM can be placed on its side, upside down, or conventional. When we took out the barrel chairs and the TV on the curbside, we reserved a 'potential' space behind the passenger seat. Since we have two Kyocera 130 solar panels, we should be able to stay off grid for quite awhile...I highly recommend solar. mike
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CHARTER MEMBERS: FOUR CORNERS UNIT, AND PROUD OF IT!!!
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Old 01-19-2011, 10:25 AM   #158
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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Thanks guys, good info!
Money is tight as I am out of work.
I plan to add solar at some time, so I want the ability to add batteries that have more capacity later. As I have to repair the battery tray, it makes sense to build in the depth I might need.
I think I will cut the tray bottom out just inboard of the flange where the steel is rivited to the "Rocker". Then I will weld an angle iron box below, with stiffening ribs.
Thought about making the floor a "drop in" with 1/4" diamond plate, so I clean/replace but how does that stand up to battery acid?
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Old 01-19-2011, 06:41 PM   #159
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1986 34.5' Airstream 345
Key West , Florida
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I think you will have no problem using diamond plate for one the plate will stay dry under the batteries becuse of the diamond rigs. I would use baking soda every 6 months and wash out the tray. I have seen many boats used diamond plate for there batterie boxes, that is not to say I have not seen some vary badly pitted and mushy ones but that is what you get on a boat if you do not have good galvanic isolation.
I pill put a link to my wife's blog were there are some pics of the temp fix i did till we put the new stainless one in.
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:51 AM   #160
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
Foothill Ranch , California
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Thanks, I am thinking to build a frame of angle iron, and weld it to the steelwork, then make a drop in tray that I could take out. Tray would be secured by a few of ST screws.

Oh, Anyone know where I can find some thick rubber to replace my missing front bumper over-rider strips?

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