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Old 10-08-2004, 09:22 PM   #1
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Just wondering if anyone has had trouble getting in campgrounds or had height issues going in. We are 40' long and 13'4" High and are heading out next weekend. But have some reservations about getting in and out of campgrounds. It's a 30' box on a Columbia chassis. THANK YOU
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Old 10-08-2004, 10:30 PM   #2
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height and length issuse are sorta like pain issues-- it depends on your definition of issues-- i'm 39-6" and 12' 4" tall--- ok the coach is-- but most campgrounds in their ads will say big rigs welcome if the can accomodate if you have any hesitations call'em an' ask 'em. we've found that state parks are the least large rig accomodating. take care an' have a ball--- mase
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Old 10-09-2004, 03:54 AM   #3
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We are 40'L & 13'H and have squeezed our way into some pretty small campgrounds. My only problem was with towing a car. You can't back up with a car in tow. Never had a height issue, but did have a few small CG roads that gave me fits.

Bill
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Old 06-19-2005, 08:23 PM   #4
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I know that this is and old post, but I would like to bring up a point. How many of you have banged up your rear basement doors in the course of using your conversion in everyday driving? If you've had your truck for 6 months, I'm sure that the bottoms of your doors or even worse, your electric steps have met asphalt. Why do all these converters build failures into their rigs? And this is just one example. How about the way that they build a flat roof when almost every other class A manufacturer as well as the majority of 5th wheelers and travel trailers build a crowned roof? Just asking for trouble. I don't get it. I recently ordered replacement doors from the same company that Showhauler orders their doors from and had them custom built. I ordered them to taper from the standard height at the front to 6 inches less in the rear. I plan on reconfiguring the framing, boxes and filler pieces on the rear and sides to provide more clearance when going down driveway cuts and over crowned highways. The custom doors only cost me $50 more per side than if I purchased new doors to replace the ones that got banged up. Why don't the manufactures learn from experience and redesign their conversions? Maybe they just don't care? They already go our money. It would do all of us as well as their business and the industry as a whole a great service if they took one of their conversions on vacation and used it in real life situations like we do. Then they can see what works and what doesn't when they get into some campground with sites that aren't level or have ditches and ruts everywhere.
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Old 06-19-2005, 10:05 PM   #5
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....my trailer is just 10" off the ground but has a large 4" roller under the whole back end of the trailer.....it simply rolls over anything and the wheels lift off the ground....the edge of the trailer where it meets the bottom is aluminum and steel-the steel will let it ride over most anything....my roof has a 3/8" crown in the center but sitting on uneven pavement will cause this to be a moot issue as water/snow always seeks the easiest path[right over the frickin' door everytime!]....the aluminum fin on Warpaths roof is great idea....just as soon as I get the 100 other issues settled this week and 10 feet of aluminum angle and some caulk.....geokaye
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Old 06-20-2005, 11:11 AM   #6
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Those are the problems built in to a trailer. Mine is a Showhauler garagecoach. Almost every truck conversion that I've seen and especially the garage units, have long back ends behind the rear axle. Every one of the major truck converters does not do enough to prevent damage to the back end that are experienced in everyday driving. I'm not talking about abuse here, just normal road and campground conditions. And while on this subject, why would anybody who has been building these things for any length of time not talk a potential customer out of building a long garage unit with a single rear axle? It's an injustice to the guy putting up the big money and they should know better. I ended up adding a retractable tag axle at a cost of around $6500 and hoped that my ass end dragging days were over. Obviously the next step is necessary which is to cut away part of the back end. I have a whole list of screw ups that never should have happened, but did. Maybe our web host and what at times, seems to be best friend of Showhauler, would like to comment. I'm sure that others have had these same experiences, but for whatever reason have refused to comment on them.
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Old 06-20-2005, 06:20 PM   #7
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cjc...You said you got some doors from the same place Showhauler gets there's. Can you tell me where and are you happy with there quality. I'll be needing some shortly. Thanks, Steve
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Old 06-20-2005, 06:59 PM   #8
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Check http://www.wileymetal.com They're located in Indiana just like everything else in the industry.
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Old 06-20-2005, 11:27 PM   #9
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.....cjc.....I don't see anything wrong with listing these "screwups".....I think name calling will pervent that from happening but without name calling-I'd say you were doing a public service and surely giving this list something to think about......My Volvo and trailer is just the first of few rigs I'm interested in building for myself and others.... as I look for something to do in my spare time.....[AKA retirement].....I was t hinking about an air or hydraulic system to raise the back end of the trailer for another reason.....but it would help it go over tall curbs- ruts- road crowns- screwey driveway entrances and exits....maybe even giving the trailer the possibility of moving sideways....[along with axel locks]-why not?....not that much of a engineering problem.....specially now that I have a Electric/Hydraulic front jack to base the concept on.....geokaye
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Old 06-21-2005, 09:13 AM   #10
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Not to be harping on Kingsley.. but... they have a CITY setting on a switch on the dash that increases the pressure on the rear air bag suspension and raises it about 6" at the bumper for rough terrain or driveways.. gotta think ahead though..takes a couple of minutes to air up... and you MUST turn it off over 30mph due to pinion angle I am sure.
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Old 06-21-2005, 03:27 PM   #11
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another thing 'bout the city ride is that they disconnect one side of the height adjustment to activate the city ride----- this means that the two rear shocks are not working together-- an' on mine this added to the rolling motion. now--- if you enjoy that---- mase
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Old 06-21-2005, 11:31 PM   #12
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Mase,
is that to say the rear shocks don't work at all or just in the city ride position?. I didn't notice a substantial amount of body roll.
John
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Old 06-22-2005, 10:50 PM   #13
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the shocks do work but the air bags are separate and work like two air bags which compress independantly. -- mase
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Old 06-24-2005, 05:40 AM   #14
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cjc -

Sorry to hear about your troubles. One problem with conversions is that they are custom, and with every one built there are probably new issues that pop up. I think any info you can provide about issues is going to help others when they configure their rig. Overhang, wheel base, tandem or single axle and tongue weights are all huge items to consider in your conversion design.

How long is the overhang? I would think 12' would be max, but I am sure there are longer. On my first unit I had a 10' overhang, which never dragged. The problem for me was the 28' wheel base which made my turning radius quite huge. That setup was awesome on the highway, miserable in tight places. The new one has a 11' overhang and so far no dragging issues. Should Show Hauler swayed me from building with that long of a wheel base? I know they sway people from going any longer, but as far as telling you all of the issues that come along with a certain setup, I am sure they feel that is the owners responsibility.

I am not a good person as far as telling people about problems with his Show Hauler. My 02 was flawless as far as issues. A couple of very minor things popped up, but where all little things that I easily fixed myself. I am on my first trip in my new Show Hauler right now and as soon as I get back next week I will post my thoughts, experiences and issues. Just a few issues; my Norcold fridge has a blown pc board so it will only run on propane, and a small leak in the shower which was easily fixed with some silicon caulk. I have a few minor design issues which I will expound on next week, but they are very minor.
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Old 06-25-2005, 08:53 PM   #15
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Warpath,

My Norcold had the same issue. Blown panel and only running on LP. Took about 4 hours to repair since they had to pull the entire fride out of the cabinet.

Hope the rest of your trip goes well.

I love my city ride switch. Whenever I see an apron or major grade change coming I hit it and it only takes a 20 -30 seconds to lift my backend in the air. As far as the rocking motion goes, I only use it when I am going slow anyway and usually I am hitting the apron at an angle so there is going to be rocking anyway. Sure it may cause some additional but that does not bother me one bit.
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Old 06-25-2005, 09:37 PM   #16
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.......huummm....kinda like the posures on the street with their lo-riders....hit the switch and the vehicle raises/lowers about 10 inches...that is an idea for the after market group to offer for MH's ....a lift system[air] to raise and lower the coach.....kinda like a city crip bus that kneels at the curb so a gimp can get on[I'm one-so don't get nutzo on me for my descriptions-I'm talking about myself]....the height issue is the number one reason for my car hauler trailer instead of a 5th wheeler....I can make it into the trailer no matter how bad things get[crutches walking/walker or wheel chair] by either the ramp or the side door....Some days getting into the tractor is a real "task" my knees don't want to cooperate without causing me pain....then..... the next day I can "almost'' run[fat chance of that].....but a tractor that would kneel is an interesting issue....I am considering a toter design with the trailer with a additional rear entrance If my knees/neck/back go south....I was thinking of adding a electric over hydraulic folding step[like a small lift gate] that would raise me to deck height so I didn't have to climb into the cab the usual way....If I need it in the future....then a regular "back door" into the toter part of the cab with usual entrance into the tractor part of the cab......geofkaye- " in the what if mode again"
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Old 07-24-2005, 04:44 PM   #17
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What is the maneuverability diferences between a 41' Columbia truck conversion vs a 41' Class A on a freightliner chassis if the both had a 50 degree wheel cut ?
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Old 07-24-2005, 06:28 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally posted by BWhite:
What is the maneuverability diferences between a 41' Columbia truck conversion vs a 41' Class A on a freightliner chassis if the both had a 50 degree wheel cut ?
It would depend entirely on the wheelbase of the unit in question, which could vary widely within any overall length envelope. A short WB on a unit with a lot of front and/or rear overhang would of course turn a lot tighter than the same length unit with the axles closer to each end of the unit. All this is assuming that the 41' Columbia length includes the total length of the rig, not just the coach. Does this help you?
Gary
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