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Old 12-09-2012, 01:28 AM   #1
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Questions regarding 2006 Apex 4 sale

I have been loking at an Apex with 2900 miles. It sat for 3 yrs and then was titled 2 1/2 years ago. Since the builder is gone it never had any issues worked out by the manufacturer. I have read that the radiator, tires, steering bracket, electronics and the wrist pin of the ISL 8.9 Cummins could potencially be big ticket items. Sounds like the electronics could also be a concern. The Smart-beds have been updated to the rocker switches and also the Silver-leaf was updated.There was a charging system problem that was corrected with new batteries, charger and I think a relay. Cummins said that the warranty started when it was titled and still has 2 1/2 yrs left. Don't know about the Allison. I have been holding back because of the little use but it drives, runs and looks like new. The price is about 10-20% below low base Nada. Any suggestions?
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Old 12-09-2012, 02:16 AM   #2
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If the Cummins still has warranty, the wrist pin recall will be on them. Cummins has a kit that takes ~30 min. to install. I spoke w/Cummins Yakima who delivered the engines about the recall maybe 24 months ago- every engine that had an issue had it in the first 10,000 miles, and none were engines delivered by Cummins N.W. for motorhome use. The recall kits were installed, and nothing ever came of it. Could also be your engine serial # is not in the wrist pin group; our 2006 was not.

Tires for sure, steer bracket also and I believe the radiator crack is also batting 1000; of those tires $2,500-3,500, radiator ~$4,500, steer kit say $700. Odd that w/such low mileage the rocker switches were installed to obviate the pad switches, but so much the better.

Apexers can fill you in on the idiosyncracies of the Apex upgrades. The one area I know about- the RO membrane & water filters will need changing, ~$210. While you are in the neighborhood, I'd have the small screens on the two water fill solenoid valves removed & cleaned, maybe $50-75 in labor.; those can clog w/debris & bio-film accumulation, the latter of which will occur in a stagnant unit. Prior to installing new filters & membrane I recommend flushing the water system w/disinfectant.

Should drive like a dream.
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Old 12-09-2012, 12:37 PM   #3
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Thanks EngineerMike. I was hoping you would chime in with your knowledge.

With under 3,000 miles it hasn't time for the failure. I read that there were 58 affected motors sent to Western RV that were used in the 2006-7 Alpine and Apex. Are you saying the serial # should tell the tale? Sounds like Cummins can check this out. I don't understand if this engine has an exhaust break or an engine brake? Does anyone know if there is access to the engine from inside the bedroom? That seems to be pretty standard on most pushers but this Apex has drawers in the bottom of the closet and I saw no evidence of any floor latches.

This coach was in a showroom in Oregon and I'm guessing that the pad
switches were cycled many times. What kind of door lock is used on this coach?

Does this coach have air brakes? I keep reading that people did not like the hyd brakes, sounds similar to other Monaco acquired coaches?

I was told that this coach does not fair well boondogging? The tanks are some of the largest I've seen so it has to be some other issues. It has a 110 fridge and 8 6-volt batteries. It must be the other electronics?

I know Alpine 5th wheels were an all season coach but I found no Apex information in the brouchure about its roof, side, floor insulation(glass or rigid foam) and construction - any ideas?
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Old 12-09-2012, 01:56 PM   #4
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I can answer a few of the questions, even though I don't have the APEX. The coach should be good for boondocking with the large tanks and the 8 batteries, with the exception of the residential fridge. It will use quite a bit of the battery power, and will require running the generator from time to time daily using the autostart feature to keep the batteries up. Or some healthy solar panels. But many do it very successfully. Big tanks trump everything else for boondocking, unless you can't run the generator for some reason. I have the Dometic fridge that will run on propane, so I don't need the generator as much.

Your engine will have the two stage engine brake, not the exhaust brake used on earlier models. They work great.

On my year and model of coach there is access to the engine from inside. The mattress lifts up and you will find a trap door to access the engine. Not sure on models where the bed is on a slideout, but I would assume all do.

Not sure what you mean by the comment about Monaco acquired coaches. The Peak chassis was designed by Western RV and exclusive to them, and never acquired by Monaco. The chassis designer I believe now works for Tiffin, and they have a similar chassis.

Finally, I think you are being misinformed on the hydraulic brakes. I think you will find that most of us Alpine Coach owners love the hydraulic brakes. They feel just like your car brakes. Some find that it takes quite a bit of braking force, but if that is the case, people on this forum have found a replacement master cylinder that will solve that.

Good luck in making your decision. You have found the best place to get info on the Alpine Coach. Biased of course.

P.S. Welcome to the forum.
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Old 12-09-2012, 03:43 PM   #5
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Related to the boondocking issue, the cargo carrying capacity on some of the Apex coaches was pretty low. This may be behind the comment about it not being great for boondocking. That said, Apex owners abound at the Quartzsite Rally (5 days in the desert) so the issue can't be really serious.
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Old 12-09-2012, 04:28 PM   #6
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Emike, wrist pins 30 minutes? I cant get my tools out that fast.
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:10 PM   #7
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The recall "fix" is a circuitous approach to identifying if/when a wrist pin problem starts to manifest. They put on a new valve cover w/a sensor in it. The sensor ties into the ECM to light a warning light on the dash, I believe its the Stop Engine light. The sensor picks up an increase in crankcase pressure caused by the beginning of wrist pin seizure.
The 30 minutes is the recall install time to R&R the old valve cover & tie in the new sensor.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:22 AM   #8
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Because the different models use the same chassis the carrying capacity goes down as the coaches get bigger. A 34 Limited has a CCC of 5,300 lbs whereas the Apex 40FDQS can carry only 1,900 lbs. May not be the best choice for full-timing.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:56 AM   #9
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Here's more information on the serial numbers of the affected Cummins ISL engines:

Quote:
CUMMINS ISL CM850 ENGINE AND ENGINE COOLING ENGINE DIESEL RECALL

June 4, 2007

DEFECT SUMMARY

CERTAIN ISL CUMMINS CM850 DIESEL ENGINES PRODUCED FOR RECREATIONAL VEHICLE APPLICATIONS BETWEEN OCTOBER 17, 2005, AND APRIL 18, 2006, WITH ENGINE SERIAL NUMBER RANGE FROM 46543077 TO 46603939. THE CONNECTING ROD CONTAINS A MACHINING DEFECT IN THE WRIST PIN BUSHING OF THE ROD THAT COULD CAUSE SEIZURE OF THE PISTON PIN.

CONSEQUENCE SUMMARY

IF ALLOWED TO PROGRESS, THIS COULD LEAD TO ENGINE FAILURE WITH THE POSSIBILITY OF THE ROD RUPTURING THE BLOCK CAVITY. OIL AND DEBRIS ON THE ROADWAY COULD RESULT IN A VEHICLE CRASH.

CORRECTIVE SUMMARY

EACH VEHICLE MANUFACTURER WILL NOTIFY OWNERS OF VEHICLES THAT CONTAIN THESE ENGINES ABOUT THIS DEFECT. CUMMINS WILL CONDUCT THE REMEDY CAMPAIGN AND PROVIDE QUARTERLY COMPLETION REPORTS BROKEN DOWN BY VEHICLE MANUFACTURER; HOWEVER THE VEHICLE MANUFACTURERS WILL BE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE RECALL. VEHICLES WILL BE REPAIRED AT NO COST TO THE OWNER. THE RECALL BEGAN ON JULY 20, 2007. OWNERS CAN CONTACT EITHER THEIR VEHICLE MANUFACTURER OR CUMMINS CUSTOMER ASSISTANCE CENTER AT 1-800-343-7357.

RECALL NOTES

CUMMINS RECALL NO. C0713.CUSTOMERS MAY CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION’S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY: 1-800-424-9153); OR GO TO HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV.
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Old 12-10-2012, 12:05 PM   #10
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As to Cargo Carrying Capacity, CCC, if the unit has HydroHot, you can drop the 38gal propane tank in favor of a 5-ish gallon, and reclaim a bunch of CCC. You can also remodel the side-to-side propane tank compartment after removing the large tank so it is usable storage space. Some have done this themselves, some have had professionals like Amazing Creations of Junction City, OR do the remodel. Its a nice upgrade.
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Old 12-11-2012, 12:11 AM   #11
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On the APEX, there is no access under the bed for the engine. Run both slides out. The access lid is in the floor between the bed and the drawers below the rear closet. There are are no hinges or latch on the lid. Mine had screws holding the lid down. You have to feel in the carpet to find them. After I removed the screws, I never replaced them. Mine the lid fits tight without screws. It is pretty small access area to the front of the engine.
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Old 12-11-2012, 09:16 PM   #12
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Thanks everone for your replies. This forum is great for gathering information on specific coaches.

A few items sound like they are commom between coaches especially made in the PNW (radiators).

I'm really surprized that the coach has hydraulic brakes, is this common?

Sounds like the fridge and Diesel heater fans could draw the most power - probably be OK if you cycle the gen. I thought with 8 batteries it would do a little better.

Nobody piped up as to any leaks on slides and electrical/electronic issues (?).

A 40' quad slide sounds heavy enough to not allow much CCC for xtra stuff. Probably why some manufacturers go with a tag.

Also no mention of accessability for maintenance of components (filters, nozzles ...)

I have heard that it takes 6-12 months to work out issues with a new coach - does that sound correct? Wondering if the owner hasn't traveled much because of issues that the coach has had... I could see that would be a real confidence problem if it had any reliability issues and those could also nickle and dime you to death.

It is very difficult to deal with coach on consignment. I find it much more desirable to talk with the owner.

Thanks again for your comments.
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Old 12-11-2012, 11:46 PM   #13
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Mine fully loaded diesel, water, spare parts, tools, spare tire and RV things weighs 33,000 pounds. The chassis handles it fine. Almost every Alpine coach had hydraulic brakes which stop fine. You should have brake on your toad. As far as working out the bugs, it don't make any difference what brand you buy they all have things to work out. All Apex's are fully loaded, so you could have more to fix or adjust. You did not say how handy you are to do a lot of your own repairs. Mike already mentioned the main things that should be done.Using this forum, using the library, or if can't find it you can ask a question. I have owned an Alpine since Oct 99 and they have worked out fine for me.
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Old 12-17-2012, 01:56 PM   #14
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The original brochure for the 06 Apex 40 MDTS show the "CCC" as "2,439". This seem low to me and could be exceeded without much difficulty. What are the opinions of Apex owners in real life use? Is this CCC more then adequate, Not nearly enough and commonly limits the amount of stuff you can carry or is regularly or frequently exceeded in your actual normal use? Your com,ments and evaluation would be appreciated.
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