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Old 08-09-2009, 10:02 PM   #57
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Quite by happenstance I happen to be 'camping' at the Freightliner dealer in Phoenix at the moment waiting for a technician to look at my coach in the morning. Coming from Show Low down on 89 my ABA light on the dash lit and I started to smell the distinctive smell of burnt brakes. Stopping at a 'Safety Check' preceding one of the 6% grades down 89 my brake pedal bottomed out.

Master cylinder still has fluid, but the pedal is nada. So as not to further aggravate the wife unit by running down the hill with only the engine brake I called ins. co. and had us towed down.

What's odd is I wasn't riding or using the brakes excessively yet we're down here awaiting the bad news...

This is a 2000 mid, single slide, sn# 72230. I'll post the findings once we're back up and running...

Regards,

Mark
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Old 08-10-2009, 09:39 AM   #58
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Ted,

I can't remember what my first use was. The second time I used it was when I was adjusting the ride height, see Ride Height Wouldn't Adjust. it was very handy for this. I don't think many owners would need to adjust the ride height and wouldn't recommend doing it your self. Actually, the only fitting added to do this, is the male air connector on the bottom. The female connector was there, I just changed it to match my connectors and use it to air up the tires when needed.
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Old 08-10-2009, 03:22 PM   #59
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Armed with Dale’s “Now Famous Photo #3” of the metallic brake line over the differential I visited the folks at R.V. Specialties to help with the decision of how to resolve the unsupported portion of line that extends beyond the last Adel clamp on the tab attached to the differential. They were already one step ahead and totally agreed with all of our opinions, here on the Forum, that this extension past the last clamp was particularly prone to vibration and ultimate failure. It is believed that it doesn’t really matter whether the line is steel, conifer or plain old copper; they will all eventually fail if unsupported and/or bent too sharply.

We decided as long as I’m going to have new flex lines with flare fittings it would be best to have my new steel line a bit shorter and terminate it at the last Adel clamp to eliminate any vibration or movement of the differential that might affect the metal line. I suppose if one were to support the excessively long portion of metal line past the last clamp; this too would solve the problem and not necessitate a longer brake flex line.

If indeed, Mark’s recent brake failure proves to be another failed line and it’s in the “unsupported/sharp bend area,” this should be one more reason for ALL Alpine owners to take a very critical look at their rear metal brake line. It’s unfortunate; however, that a visual inspection such as we’ve done on our steering boxes will not yield the same dramatic results. It will be the individual’s decision if the line is supported properly and not bent too sharply. What you can’t inspect is how much flexing and stress has been placed on the existing line until it fails.
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Old 08-10-2009, 04:10 PM   #60
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Dick, just verifying what your thought is & R.V. Specialties is that you are to attach your flex line directly after the Adel clamp. Having not been under mine yet are these flex lines stainless braided or rubber or cloth braided? I do thoroughly agree that regardless of the material, with that amount of loose tubing anything will fracture. Thanks for your input, it sure is a tremendous help.
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Old 08-10-2009, 09:30 PM   #61
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My money re: Mark's issue is a stuck brake boiling the fluid & melting the ABS sensor.
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Old 08-11-2009, 07:57 AM   #62
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Quote:
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My money re: Mark's issue is a stuck brake boiling the fluid & melting the ABS sensor.
Close. Per Freightliner, the exhaust came apart just past the turbo (I did notice the change in exhaust tone), disabling the engine brake effectiveness and causing the brakes to overheat and melt the sensors. One may have stuck; I haven't verified that yet. New brakes, sensors, two rotors, etc. later (today I hope) and I'll be up and running again.

I did have them check out the brake line and it is not copper...

I'll be checking the brake line support when I get home to ensure I don't end up in the same boat! (Again...)

Regards,

Mark
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Old 08-11-2009, 09:32 AM   #63
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MFortle,
2000 Alpines were involved in a saftey alert of some sort due to the calibers hanging up and draging causing them to overheat and melt the ABS sensors. I had all 4 calibers replaced due to this issue on my 2000 40FDSS.
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Old 08-11-2009, 12:14 PM   #64
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MFortle,
2000 Alpines were involved in a saftey alert of some sort due to the calibers hanging up and draging causing them to overheat and melt the ABS sensors. I had all 4 calibers replaced due to this issue on my 2000 40FDSS.
Sounds just like my issue. I checked the NHTSA website and found the recall (NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 02V243000).

Not sure how I would know whether my calipers had every been replaced!

Unfortunately with WRV out of business the replacement will be on my dime -- I'm up $3k in repairs right now at the Phoenix Freightliner just so I can get back home to San Diego. They haven't replaced the calipers (saw no compelling reason) and are close to finishing the work.

Anyone have an idea of the cost of new calipers?

Thanks,

Mark
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Old 08-11-2009, 02:02 PM   #65
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Ted – Yes, R.V. Specialists did indeed use a shorter steel line to replace the copper or whatever material type that was in place. The new steel line terminates at and is secured by the Adel clamp shown in Dale’s “Famous Photo #3.” At that point it attaches to the newly fabricated flex line. All lines now are flare connections. There was no readily available information as to where WRV got their flex hose material; so R.V. Specialists searched the local area for heavy truck parts suppliers and came up with nothing. They then went to the local manufacturer and distributer for custom hoses, Pirtek here in San Diego. They could not do the certification required for this job so they forwarded the originals to their main shop in Denver. Pirtek’s local address and phone is 7710 Arjons Drive, San Diego, CA 92126, 858-695-8856. Sorry, I don't have the information on the Denver operation. Mark, the R.V. Specialists owner, believes the hoses are rubber with stainless steel interior braid.

Here’s some more food for thought on this metal line over the differential. Mark also suggested, “Why not use the same flexible brake line material as a replacement?” I gave that some thought but decided I didn't want to be concerned about the possibility of any future liability problems. No use experimenting by getting too fancy; just pretty much stay with WRV’s original basic design, albeit shortened a bit to preclude the vibration, fatigue and eventual failure of the unsupported metal line.

Mark – Good to hear you weren’t “Victim 2” of another failed metal line. It’s definitely a happy ending when no one gets hurt, you don't bend any metal, and it's only your check that receives a few bruises.
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Old 08-11-2009, 02:20 PM   #66
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We will be making this a permant inclusion on our Brake Service and Inspection for all coaches.

This brings to mind the importance of not only inspecting but servicing the hydraulic brake system and fluid on a regular basis.
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Old 08-11-2009, 02:27 PM   #67
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We will be making this a permant inclusion on our Brake Service and Inspection for all coaches.

This brings to mind the importance of not only inspecting but servicing the hydraulic brake system and fluid on a regular basis.
Wish you folks had a facility in Denver....
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Old 08-11-2009, 02:39 PM   #68
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We will doing parts and service at the FMCA Convention at the EXPO in New Mexico March of 2010, will that help?
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Old 08-11-2009, 03:34 PM   #69
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WRV allocated 6 hours of labor to perform the caliper swap/recall work on my 2000 back when I purchased it in 2006.
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Old 08-12-2009, 12:40 AM   #70
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Today, I got my coach back from Buddy Gregg Motorhomes in Lewisville, TX after they replaced the copper (or cunifer) brake line over the differential. The repair including routing and hanging the replacement line so that it does not flex or rub on anything. I plan to take the non-steel line to a knowledgeable person to confirm if it is truly copper water line or cunifer.

Thanks to Gary Arnold and Bob Bartlett for reporting this serious problem.
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