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Old 11-10-2016, 09:00 AM   #61
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Great idea. I will do that.
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Old 11-10-2016, 11:54 AM   #62
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What rear gearing are you running?
BTW, it looks like I have a 3.70 gear in my axles according to my door tag.

I've had some interesting recent discussions on a FB page for Detroit engines. We used quite a bit of oil on our trips last year, about 3-gallons for 10K miles. A lot of guys responded that our rig is overpowered for the load and that we're running it too softly and glazing the cylinder walls. There's a lot more to this but the glazing came up after I was asking them what was a good RPM to run these engines at under load. Although the glazing concerns have some merit there are other potential causes for our oil consumption, turbo and air compressor. Our issue seems to be due to a faulty air compressor. The potential glazing issues had and still have me concerned but hopefully it's not and will not be an issue. One thing I've learned from all of this is to limit idle time with these engines and don't be afraid to lean on the engines and make some power. We also had some discussions on oil type. We've been running Rotella-T since it's easy to get in 10-gallon quantities at Sam's Club. Almost everyone said ditch the Rotella and switch to either Mobil or Delo . I called Interstate Diesel to ask them some questions on our engine rebuild and the guy there said to be careful about switching away from Rotella. He said Rotella has a lot of adhesion and didn't quite say it leaves deposits but did say switching oil brands may release a bunch of stuff that the Rotella is holding in there.
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Old 11-11-2016, 08:25 PM   #63
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well i have wondered the same thing about glazing - but we don't have an issue w/ the engine being TOO cool - but the tranny rarely comes off the cool / 125* mark.

and after 130k or so were not burning any oil.
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Old 12-19-2016, 03:10 PM   #64
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Default ~32ft tag Motorcoach

Need to wake up, Deepvee, Bushpilot, Bob86224, petrel and other smart MC owners again on my hunt for a MC. Got hung up and delayed due to an unexpected Cummins repair. Fuel pump failed and found a cracked exhaust header. Fixed so back in hunt.
My new question. Engines. My cummins was fixed by a Kenworth dealer with a huge shop and they strongly favor Cummins and Paccor engines but those are the engines in the Kenworths so it makes sense. I told them what I was looking for and they right away said no one near me in S La(near Houma in the oil patch) works on Mercedes engines and that they advised me to stay away from Detroits and Cats as well. They hate them both. That narrows things way down.What are your opinions on that? Having an engine that a nearby shop can work on would be a plus if it goes down but I will do all the regular maintenance on it.
Speak WISE ONES!
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Old 12-19-2016, 04:25 PM   #65
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.... I told them what I was looking for and they right away said no one near me in S La(near Houma in the oil patch) works on Mercedes engines and that they advised me to stay away from Detroits and Cats as well. They hate them both. That narrows things way down.What are your opinions on that? Having an engine that a nearby shop can work on would be a plus if it goes down but I will do all the regular maintenance on it.
Speak WISE ONES!
1st know that the Mercedes Engine is a rebranded Detroit motor - god knows theres some modifications (beyond the valve covers w/ the 3 pointed Benz star).

No one is surprised that a dealer or service location would recommend against something they can't offer you

I'd be willing to bet that Freightliner out sells both KW & Pete (combined)
Volvo probably does too.

Freightliner are all over the place - and there are tons of dealers up and down the interestate...not to mention that parts are so common that any truck stop can work on this stuff.

Either way - these are Million mile chassis & Motors - good lucking wearing them out as an RV'er.

Detroit has over 800 authorized service centers -> this link doesnt account for the Independent Shops https://freightliner.com/Dealers

Having a service center close to home doesnt mean SQUAT when youre traveling.

If youre doing all the service yourself (assuming youre doing it at home) all you need is UPS & Freight delivery

This link infers that not all Peterbuilt dealers service KW and vise versa
https://www.paccarfinancial.com/page...erlocator.aspx
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Old 12-19-2016, 04:58 PM   #66
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Default Freightliner

You sorta lost me with the Freightliner and everyone being able to work on them which suggests that Freightliner has a standard fitted engine which is? I suppose you are right that the important consideration is when I might break down on the road and not near home since I told you I will do my own service. I dropped into a tunnel vision mode and lost sight of the obvious. Stupid me. So what engine or engines are the easiest to get serviced if/when I bugger something up on the road?
Thanks for the quick reply.
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Old 12-19-2016, 05:15 PM   #67
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My point was - there are MORE freightliners on the road than anything else, which means more dealers, more service centers & probably more independents who can service it (aka any truck stop).

Freightliner - like any one of the MFG's offers different engine options, MB is one of 'em.
The MB motor is a rebranded Detroit.

the PacCar guy did a number on your logic, I sell too....Its what we do.

I couldn't tell you what is easer to service - I havent needed any service. I bought our coach w/ slightly less than 80k on it (IIRC). The 1st year we racked up a good 25 or 18k, I got sick and we barely touched it one year....I think were over 140k now....NO problems at all.
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Old 12-19-2016, 05:33 PM   #68
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As a former diesel mechanic, I can assure you that a typical freightliner/Peterbuilt/kenworth/international dealer can and will service any Cummins, Detroit, M.B. or Cat engine. Some of them won't touch a volvo engine but over the years Freightliner has had all of the major manufacturers as options in their truck. The only one I would even worry about would be a volvo engine. Very good engines but only warrantied at volvo dealers. Heck take a look at all the "RUSH" truck centers and decide for yourself. They sell just about everything and are all over the country.
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Old 12-19-2016, 07:26 PM   #69
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Default Engine choice

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As a former diesel mechanic, I can assure you that a typical freightliner/Peterbuilt/kenworth/international dealer can and will service any Cummins, Detroit, M.B. or Cat engine. Some of them won't touch a volvo engine but over the years Freightliner has had all of the major manufacturers as options in their truck. The only one I would even worry about would be a volvo engine. Very good engines but only warrantied at volvo dealers. Heck take a look at all the "RUSH" truck centers and decide for yourself. They sell just about everything and are all over the country.
Cannot thank you enough for your reply. Diesel mechanics know what is what like I knew(now retired) what was what as a practicing Orthodontist and listened to other Orthodontists when I was treating a particular difficult case and needed help when strange stuff happened. Yes. No matter what your profession, strange things pop up and others are always ahead of you.
Great info and thanks again.
Phil
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Old 12-19-2016, 11:38 PM   #70
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I'll add that you may also want to consider older pre-2007 (I think is the year) engine so you don't have the DPF and DEF. These seem to be a source of reliability problems. The 2003-2006 engines have EGR, prior to that should be non-EGR I believe. You probably know Cat got out of over the road due to emissions.

Freightliner chassis is the most popular, and Cummins is the most common engine. Does not mean others are not good, but as mentioned it could be tougher for service or parts availability.

I have the Eaton 10-speed auto shift without clutch pedal inside the cab. Very easy to drive, the trans does pretty good with using the right gear. No real complaints from me. My engine is Cummins ISX, with EGR only. So far been very good and also no complaints. Mine specifically is the CM870 version, which a few service type guys have told me is a good one and generally no big reliability issues.
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Old 08-09-2017, 12:39 PM   #71
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Default MC purchase update

Been a long time looking at Racing Junk every day while waiting on repair of MH which turned out to be a long drawn out mess with the Ins Co and Lazy Days body shop going back and forth. Will say this, Natl Interstate Ins sucks big time. 10 months since the MH was run under a train trestle in Longview, Texas and still do not have it back so I decided to stop waiting and bought a 2004 Elite Aluminum Broke Wall(what ever broke wall means) Freightliner Columbia with a 515 Detroit engine with a tick over 100K miles. Both engine and chassis new in 2004. Two were on the market(both are still posted on RJ site) and I missed the first one by one day. I took the advice you guys gave me and narrowed my choices down to twin screw and a big motor~500 HP as I will be mainly in the Mtns. That meant Cummins or Detroit based on nearby big rig service shops.The Elites have unusual interiors but I have always liked modern/contemporary looking stuff and these are both that interior wise.
Let me know what you think. Good, bad, or ugly.
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Old 08-10-2017, 02:39 PM   #72
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Very nice. 14L Detroit right? Should be a nice rig with that kind of power. I wish at times I had a little more power from our 425 HP 12.7L DD.
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Old 08-10-2017, 03:16 PM   #73
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Right. 14L Detroit with 515HP. Probably more than I need but who ever fussed about too much power? Took a very long time to find one but it also took a long time to decide what I wanted. You guys were a big help. The Ins Co and body shop screwed me time wise but not much I can do about that other than filing a law suit and that will be done within the next few weeks to beat the 1 year time limit if they continue this BS.
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Old 08-10-2017, 03:49 PM   #74
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We're 38K and usually pull a 24' enclosed trailer at probably 9K. We seem to cruise just fine and get knocked down to maybe 50-55 on some of our big mountain climbs here in AZ. We actually seem to do pretty good compared to a lot of other rigs we come across. I've always been pretty happy with our climbing capability until I hooked our friends 32' stacker up to our rig. The trailer weight probably only went up to 15K but man that thing pulled like it was full of lead. We were down to 35 MPH on our normal 50-55 MPH climb. I know our friends with newer 500HP engines can out pull us so I think you'll be pretty happy with the 515 and you may even get better mileage than us.
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Old 08-10-2017, 05:01 PM   #75
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That does not surprise me as I always was pulling pulling a short 20 ft stacker with race cars and tools and was right at 15K which is/was the max weight for my Amer Trad tag with 400 HP. Or, I was pulling a heavy utility trailer with a Hummer on it in the Mtns. It struggled in Mtns and I wore out the dif in just 100K miles. The MH was not designed for what I was doing with it. Needed more grunt and less glitz but truth is, the new MC is as nice, in a different way, as the MH. The MC is less girly than the MH.
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Old 08-11-2017, 07:56 AM   #76
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Congratulations on selecting your new rig! I think you will be pleased with the big Detroit. It is a bit on the thirsty side, but fun to drive.
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Old 09-02-2017, 11:57 AM   #77
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Default Trouble within 1 hour

Picked up the 2005 Elite RV with Detroit 60 series and Eaton 10 speed and right away had trouble with the trans shifting out and back into 10th gear. Traded a conventional RV for this Freightliner RV and knew absolutely nothing about it. After an hour or so it flashed F-10-F-10 and locked into 10th when I pulled over. No response to shifting into N etc. It is an auto/Man shift with paddle on the steering column. Shut down and restarted and the dash went nuts with flashing warn lights. Disconnected all the neg battery leads to kill all power(former owner's advice) hoping it would set the PCU/TCU and it worked. Fired up and shifted fine for several minutes and then the entire failure sequence happened three more times. Eventually tried using the manual mode and it seemed to work. I limped into a Freightliner shop and dropped it off. Just weeks ago the same problem was "fixed" by another Freightliner dealer so the repairs are under warranty. By the way, the dealer I bought the RV from was extremely helpful as was the Freightliner service center and the former owner so I am not upset about the unfortunate and very stressful first two days in the Freightliner. Learned a Hell of a lot very fast. So, anyone ever had a similar problem with their trans? Sure would like some more info.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:43 PM   #78
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Default Elite trans problem update

2nd FL dealership(and I) gave up on figuring out the autoshift problem after Eaton had no ideas about it other than installing a new XYshifter and TCU and they were not certain if that would fix it so I bailed and plan on converting it to a 10 or 13 speed three pedal manual. The cost of unknown TCU repair outcome and certain manual outcome costs are about the same. However, after driving it a few times for an hour or so it only occasionally reshifts into 10th so I can live with that for now.

Another problem which might be related to the trans elec problem. The battery wiring seems to be wrong as the heavy starter pos lead is connected to the 4 house batteries located inboard in the battery bay. The three outboard batteries(for the engine I think) have the jumper cable leads running to them so it seems like the engine starter lead would be connected to that bank of batteries.
I also have only 9volts at the indoor lights and slide so something is crossed up it seems.

Does anyone have a schematic of basic engine/house battery connections? All the wiring seems new with fresh labels so I suspect the wiring has gotten crossed up but cannot find any schematics other than very basic stuff.
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Old 11-14-2017, 09:13 PM   #79
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What kind of truck conversion? I know you said it's a freightliner, but where are the house batteries in relation to the truck batteries? My truck batteries are located close to the driver side fuel tank, then there is a battery isolator and the house batteries are to the right of the truck batts. My unit will automatically charge the house batteries while the truck is running, there is no emergncy start on the generator, it will pull from truck batteries if needed.

9 volts at your lights is very low, could the batteries be severely discharged? I leave my unit plugged in and it keeps the batteries charged and fridge cold at all times. There is also a display to check voltage and it shows around 13volts when plugged in. On my old toter I have seen it as low as 11 volts and then I had to jump the generator to start it back up.
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Old 11-15-2017, 06:39 AM   #80
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9 volts is dead, check the voltage at the batteries (with them disconnected).
if you are on shore power the (ac 2 dc) converter/charger should be giving you 12vdc
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