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Old 11-29-2015, 01:41 PM   #15
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I will point out an adjustment that could contribute to damaging the Sheppard steering box mount and also contribute to blown seals on the unit.

The mechanical stops on the steering knuckles need to be adjusted to keep tires from contacting any body or suspension parts.

IMPORTANT: The steering box then needs to be adjusted such that there is a 1/8" gap at full left/right between the stop and the axle. If this becomes metal to metal, forces go up exponentially. The steering box relief screws are the tiny standard screws on the outside top and bottom of the box-- VERY easy to see and adjust. Top screw adjusts max turn angle one direction, bottom screw the other direction. Screwing them in decreases turn angle. Screwing them out increases turn angle.

Brett
2003 Alpine 38FDDS
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Old 11-29-2015, 07:21 PM   #16
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The really big ticket item on buying a used diesel pusher is the condition of the engine. I would make any sale contingent on the engine passing a Cummins dealership test. They can tell if the engine has been 'dusted' and not sure the average buyer will pick that up. I think a rebuild is in the neighborhood of 12- 15 thousand dollars. If engine passed the test you pay, if it fails seller pays.....

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Old 11-30-2015, 12:23 PM   #17
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Good info and advice from yuppie_rednk #8. In general buying used, to some extent, you are buying someone else's problems. However, for many of us, used is the only way to afford a diesel pusher. My 99 had less than 15,000 miles on it when I bought it last summer. Even so, in addition to the purchase price, I planned to spend around $10,000 in maintenance, repairs and parts. The short of the story is, prior to purchasing the coach, focus on the big ticket items such as the engine, transmission/drivetrain, tires, batteries, brakes, generator, refrigerator, roof and roof ACs. Post purchase, expect to have issues and bugs that need to be ironed out - mine certainly did from disuse for so many years. The trade-off is, a lot more coach for the money for more work on your part to get it into shape.

Keep in mind, not all of the issues addressed in this forum apply to 98's. Also, from reading iRV2 you could conclude that Alpines are just a never ending string of problems. That is not the case. The strength of this forum is the collective experience of many Alpine owners who are willing to take the time to help other owners. That is a huge benefit for those of us who think Alpine is still one of the better coaches on the road today. You are welcome to PM with questions.
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Old 12-06-2015, 06:03 PM   #18
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Beagle,
They can tell if the engine has been 'dusted' and not sure the average buyer will pick that up.

What does "Dusted" mean? Trashed?, Abused?
That was part of my original question. What can a dealer or any service facility determine about the internal condition of the engine? I have talked to Cummins Pacific and they tell me that they can only report what is in Cummins' records as to recalls and or repairs and regular service done in their facilities.

Don't mind paying for an inspection, but I would like to learn more than "Looks good, sounds good, but it may break tomorrow or next week."

Thanks for your input.
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Old 12-06-2015, 06:40 PM   #19
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If dusting were a common issue on a particular RV (VERY rare) then, pulling the boot between the air filter and turbo would show evidence of dirt were this an issue.

Reality is that this is so rare that this is not done on routine inspections.

If you have any reason to suspect an incompetent tech replaced the air filter or evidence that that air system was improperly designed such that water could get to the filter element, then indeed pull the boot and inspect!

Brett
2003 Alpine 2003 FDDS
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Old 12-06-2015, 06:57 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gmcgene View Post
Beagle,
They can tell if the engine has been 'dusted' and not sure the average buyer will pick that up.

What does "Dusted" mean? Trashed?, Abused?
That was part of my original question. What can a dealer or any service facility determine about the internal condition of the engine? I have talked to Cummins Pacific and they tell me that they can only report what is in Cummins' records as to recalls and or repairs and regular service done in their facilities.

Don't mind paying for an inspection, but I would like to learn more than "Looks good, sounds good, but it may break tomorrow or next week."

Thanks for your input.
Basically, dusting refers to a gulp of dirt through or past the air cleaner and injected into the cylinders which would cause the cylinders to become scoured. Resulting in loss of compression.
Simple inspection is to remove the air filter and reach into the tube leading to the engine and wipe the walls to see if there is an excess amount of dust.

Should be pretty clean.
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Old 12-07-2015, 12:09 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mule Skinner View Post
Basically, dusting refers to a gulp of dirt through or past the air cleaner and injected into the cylinders which would cause the cylinders to become scoured. Resulting in loss of compression.
Simple inspection is to remove the air filter and reach into the tube leading to the engine and wipe the walls to see if there is an excess amount of dust.

Should be pretty clean.
Good description!
Wrong size filter mounting base or wrong type can caused problems. Lots of information on the web about the use of K&N type filters. (not to start a dispute about that).

beagle
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