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Old 04-21-2013, 01:16 AM   #1
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Default 2007 Haulmark with Freedomline Transmission

Went "looking" at RV's today and one dealer had just put a 2007 Haulmark 3329DS (which is built on a Freightliner Coronado chassis with a 515hp Detroit Diesel and a 12speed Meritor Freedomline tranny) on the lot just before we got there. Unit has less than 28,000miles on it and seems to be in excellent condition. Took for a test drive and it would not shift in auto mode, but shifted just fine manually. Told the salesman about it and he said "no problem" I will get that fixed and you can come back and test drive it. Asking Price is $169,000cdn which will include mechanical certification, 10new tires of my choice, full of diesel and propane.

Is it worth dealing on? I don't want to hear a whole bunch of "don't buy it, it is already broken" comments (my neighbor bought a VW that had a ton of miles on it and the check engine light was on, owner said he couldn't figure it out, took it home-spent $50 on a new sensor and drove it for another 5yrs so seemingly irrepairable stuff isn't always a bad deal).

I know that Meritor no longer sells them but how durable are they? Mechanically should be pretty tough but how problem prone are the electronics? I have a ZF service center about two hrs away.

I have a fair bit of experience with Allisons and they are great when they work but when things going strange they are a royal pain in the wallet to fix.....
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Old 04-21-2013, 11:54 AM   #2
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Electrical glitches are painful for sure. After Quadra lengthened my chassis, the Eaton wouldn't autoshift-turned out to be a loose ground. Simple once you find it-expensive to look-lol.
Price doesn't sound bad to me, how come it needs tires-sun checked? Check the warranty on Michelin rv tires these days and since you aren't paying, why not get the best imo.
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Old 04-21-2013, 12:06 PM   #3
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After doing a little research online and downloading the troubleshooting guide (which is very detailed, shows harnesses, pin-outs, ohm/voltage readings, etc) I am not to worried but have asked that they keep me in the loop with all repairs and who is doing them.

As far as the tires, yes they have lots of tread left but the sidewalls are badly cracked. I told them if I do close a deal on the unit (we did put down a refundable deposit, to hold it until they get the trans fixed and we can get back up there) that I am going to decide which tires get put on. So they will probably be Michelin (had best luck with them when I was driving long-haul). I want to put something with a little bit of grip on the back as we do live in the country and will occasionally venture slightly off pavement. I don't want to put on some big knobby mudders like we use in the oilfield but want something more than a rib tread. Any suggestions?
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Old 04-21-2013, 08:48 PM   #4
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Freedomlines aren't being made anymore, I believe. Or at least not being brought into the US. And they weren't very common when they were new. So, the thing I would worry about is finding a mechanic that knows how to deal with them. There is a LONG thread on the HDT forum about a guy that had some problems with his Freedomline: Blue's Leaking Oil - Page 2 - HDT - Escapees Discussion Forum

Sounds like a pretty good price and if everything else is as you want it I don't think I'd let the trans deter me.
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:25 AM   #5
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Well it's a done deal. Signed the papers on it just before supper last night, take possession on May 4. I think we got a fair deal. Wife is sick to her stomach over the price, but we (wife and I plus 3kids) are excited to get our "new" unit.

We got the motor coach, fully detailed and serviced-inside and out, fixing a dozen or so fairly minor details, 10brand new Michelin tires of my choice, Fantastic Fan Maxx-Vent covers throughout and a four year all inclusive (if its is on or a part of the coach it is covered) warranty. Plus they took our current pickup and fifth wheel on trade at a more than fair price.
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Old 04-23-2013, 10:31 AM   #6
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Congratulations ! you should be in good shape with the warranty. When you take delivery we would all love to see some pictures. Have fun Kenn
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Old 04-23-2013, 03:11 PM   #7
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Yay!!! I'm excited for you. I still remember making the deal on mine how happy I was. And the day I drove it 200 miles home with a HUGE smile the whole time. For sure we need pictures.

See if you can be there when they put the tires on. Make sure they put balancing stuff inside. I'd buy 10 sets of dynabeads and watch them put those in. My tires were pretty crappy and when I finally got new steers I was there the whole time the mechanic worked on it. When he pulled the old tires off there was nothing inside to balance them. We put the dynabeads in and that combined with new tires made a HUGE difference. It was so much smoother I couldn't believe it. I've also heard those things that mount behind the rim work well for balancing. My tire guy had never seen dynabeads. He said he usually uses these packages of plastic beads that also work well.

Good call on the vent covers. I have those and it's great to be able to leave the vents open going down the road and in the rain.
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Old 04-23-2013, 03:42 PM   #8
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Congrats ! Cant wait to see pictures & hear more stories of your enjoyment !

I had my tires "speed" balanced (old skool) on the coach...made a HELL of a difference - figure i can always add the beads or centramatics later.
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Old 04-24-2013, 07:32 AM   #9
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Did I read that right-4 years coverage on the coach? If so, the dealer really sweetened that deal-congrats.
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