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Old 04-04-2007, 05:28 PM   #1
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Has anyone else run into this problem?

On my 2006 Alpine Coach with 12,500 miles on it, it started vibrating upon acceleration - felt through the seat and the steering wheel. Eventually, after about 60 more miles of driving, the whole coach started shaking badly upon acceleration. After taking it to Peterbilt of Florence, SC, they diagnosed it with the following problems:
1. Stretched driveline Yoke
2. Two bad U-Joints
3. Metal shaving in the differential
4. Differential lubricant the consistancy of molasses

After 5 1/2 days in the shop, it is now repaired with a new Yoke, 2 new U-Joints, metal shavings flushed out and new synthetic lubricant placed in the differential. No differential gears, bearings or seals were found to be damaged. They were unable to determine where the metal shavings came from or why the lubricant was so thick and syrupy. The shop foreman said that he had only seen lubricant like this when a differential had been filled with two different types of lubricant that did not mix together correctly.
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Old 04-04-2007, 05:28 PM   #2
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Has anyone else run into this problem?

On my 2006 Alpine Coach with 12,500 miles on it, it started vibrating upon acceleration - felt through the seat and the steering wheel. Eventually, after about 60 more miles of driving, the whole coach started shaking badly upon acceleration. After taking it to Peterbilt of Florence, SC, they diagnosed it with the following problems:
1. Stretched driveline Yoke
2. Two bad U-Joints
3. Metal shaving in the differential
4. Differential lubricant the consistancy of molasses

After 5 1/2 days in the shop, it is now repaired with a new Yoke, 2 new U-Joints, metal shavings flushed out and new synthetic lubricant placed in the differential. No differential gears, bearings or seals were found to be damaged. They were unable to determine where the metal shavings came from or why the lubricant was so thick and syrupy. The shop foreman said that he had only seen lubricant like this when a differential had been filled with two different types of lubricant that did not mix together correctly.
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Old 04-05-2007, 07:18 AM   #3
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Dale,

We haven't had this problem on our 2006, and we now have 14,500 miles on it. But on my way home from Palm Springs last weekend, I got to thinking that we did not change the fluid in the differential at the 8500 mile oil change, so I decided I would get that done, even though it's not required yet.

Your story prompted me to schedule an appointment at Cummins NW and get the differential fluid changed.
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Old 04-05-2007, 11:59 AM   #4
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My '06 has fewer miles than yours and I encountered a vibration when starting from a dead stop. The U-joints were replaced. The 'ailment' was that they were dry; cause unknown. The problem was fixed.
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Old 04-05-2007, 02:13 PM   #5
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Attention WRV:

The owner's manual for my 2001, 2003 & 2006 Alpine coaches make no mention of changing the oil in the differential.

NOTHING DRIVES LIKE AN ALPINE!
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Old 04-05-2007, 10:29 PM   #6
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Dale - Sorry to hear about your misfortune with the U-Joint, etc. This is the first time I have heard of a "stretched driveline yoke"! Was there am explanation of how this could have occured? Was it longitudinally or diameter?

I had the Differential grease changed in my Apex at 7000 miles in November at Flying J and had synthetic lubricant put into it.

During the first 5K miles, is when the great majority of the wear on the rear-end occurs. This is because the meshing of the gears rubs off the machining & manufacturing ridges which causes metal shavings in the rear-end fluid. Changing the grease is a preventative measure to get rid of the shavings. I won't change the grease again. AMS OIL recommends changing the grease at 5K miles with synthetic grease. The machanics in the Police Shop also change the rear-end fluid on police vehicles at the 2nd service which is about 8K miles and have found they have very few rear-end failures. Flying J in Ehrenberg only charged me $129 to do it & the lube job and supplied the synthetic grease.

I guess we "live and learn" as the saying goes! Are you & Karin still in SC?
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Old 04-06-2007, 05:14 AM   #7
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swansnest,

When I picked up the coach from Peterbilt of Florence, SC on April 5, I learned a bit more about the problem. The technician who did the actual repair told me that the U-joint next to the transmission was dry, which caused the Yoke to be stretched out. I don't know in what way the Yoke was stretched. All the wobbling caused the other U-joint to go bad.

After picking up the coach on April 5, when I drove it from Florence to Greensboro, NC I encountered no further problems. One interesting point is that I believe the coach is now smoother when accelerating from a standing start than it was when I picked it up from the factory May 23, 2006. Of course, this is subjective, but it seems to be so.
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Old 04-06-2007, 06:42 PM   #8
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Most interesting--your's is the second or third incident Ive read on the forum. The WRV manual says grease the joints every 3K which I thought was excessive but after reading the first u-joint story-- I now grease for every major trip or 5K, which ever is first.

As for the oil in the dif--changed mine for the first time at 65K. It was a bit thick and brownish in color but not that bad, all in all.
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Old 04-06-2007, 08:29 PM   #9
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When greasing U joints you must make sure grease comes out all 4 seals on the cross. Also make sure the grease fitting seals back up when your done greasing U joint. If grease ooses back out of the fitting then it will be thrown out of the joint when the drive shaft is in rotation. Grease fittings get dirt in them, if fittings are not cleaned before the grease gun is hooked up to the fitting. Make sure you have your high priced vehicle serviced by someone that knows what they are doing. A low priced lube shop will have low priced employees working at them.
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Old 04-07-2007, 10:11 PM   #10
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Dale,

Sorry to hear that we were not the only ones who had this problem. We went through two driveshafts in the first 7,000 miles on our '06 Apex. The first went when one of the bolts holding the universal to the yoke snapped taking out the airbag when the shrapnel hit the fan. WRV sent Mark out, on Memorial Day weekend, with replacements and we were on our way. D/S # 2 went in British Columbia when the universal failed do to grease not going to one set of cups. I haven't changed the dif oil yet, but you can bet we will next chance I get. I now grease the universals generously and often and we haven't lost a driveshaft in over 13,000 miles.

I think that WRV got a bad batch of universals
and hope that the problem is now solved.

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Old 04-11-2007, 08:36 AM   #11
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"...we haven't lost a driveshaft in over 13,000 miles."

Reminds me of a seminar on home inspections where the proctor bragged, "I have not been successfully sued in over two and a half years." It inspired great confidence.
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Old 04-11-2007, 04:57 PM   #12
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Atta Boy Mike!!!
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Old 05-02-2007, 01:12 PM   #13
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Taking your rig back to the dealer for a lube job every 3,000 miles seems like a lot of trouble and expense. Is there a quicker, easier way to get this done? I have noticed that some Flying J and other truck stops seem to have a service barn - can you just drive up, drive through and get this done there? What about doing it yourself - is this a difficult job?
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Old 05-02-2007, 05:13 PM   #14
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Hello Snuggery:

You have the correct idea, it is a simple job there are two zert fittings on each u-joint, and you have to lube one as they are crossed drilled. Just make sure a little grease comes out of each cap. It takes me about ten minuets to craw under the coach and lube them.
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