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Old 03-10-2011, 04:28 PM   #15
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We looked at Alpines from day one...really liked them but the first ones were too short. Bought a Safari 40 then the Dynasty. My little brother lives in Elkhart and has been in the industry forever so I have seen a lot of that range of product. The NW coaches have always been better because of the eng and workforces. JMHO of course.

Hope all this helps, because as we get farther down the road and lose manufs more of these syatems will require workarounds. CAT and Cummins are fine, but when you run into manuf specific systems that came from wherever it will become more challenging.

I post and read all the applicable coach boards that share these systems to learn more so I hope folks here are amenable to a Monacoers posts...they are sent in the best wishes of just keeping these magnificent beasts rolling down the road on a sunny day. Some days you just want to call them beasts though. :(
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Old 03-10-2011, 04:40 PM   #16
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Wayne, I can appreciate the dust issue--though my 03 has never seemed to kick up the dust that some Alpines do--yet, engine temps stay well within tolerances. Your 05 most certainly has an electronic controller so a manual cut off sounds very doable. In addition to engine temps, your dash a/c freon pressure will climb quickly without fan input [depending on ambient temps]--doubt if short periods with the fan turned off would be a big issue for either.
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Old 03-11-2011, 07:12 AM   #17
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Twomed, I agree with your take on the "Over-engineered" aspect of many current designs. During my 45 years in the automotive service business, I saw Detroit go from Under-designed to systems obviously designed with the motto "If technology allows it, let's use it".

My concern in this instance would be possible degredation in performance/reliability by making the system TOO simple. Inputs for oil temperature, A/C pressure, manifold pressure and temperature, etc. may be critical for operation within safe parameters.
Just sayin'.
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Old 03-11-2011, 01:11 PM   #18
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Thanks Twomed and the rest of you for sharing your valuable input. Like Twomed, we also believe that it is going to take all of us sharing information to keep these rolling earthquakes traveling down the road. We understand there are differences between manufacturers and must remain aware of that as we try to use the information presented. I have had to learn more about hydraulic fan controllers in the past couple of weeks than I ever intended. My job is to research and read and Chuck repairs if he can. The rest of the time we visit a repair shop.

Today we learned that the part will be shipped on 3/14/11 so we hope to return to Ocala next week to have it installed. I'll post more as we know it. We are anxious to hear how the test run to the Keys goes. Travel safely. Again, we appreciate all the input.
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Old 03-11-2011, 02:51 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluepill View Post
Twomed, I agree with your take on the "Over-engineered" aspect of many current designs. During my 45 years in the automotive service business, I saw Detroit go from Under-designed to systems obviously designed with the motto "If technology allows it, let's use it".

My concern in this instance would be possible degredation in performance/reliability by making the system TOO simple. Inputs for oil temperature, A/C pressure, manifold pressure and temperature, etc. may be critical for operation within safe parameters.
Just sayin'.

http://www.sauer-danfoss.com/stellen...e/11005337.pdf

You can look here with your part number and connector to see what your individual coach utilizes from the available parameters. The ones I have checked utilize coolant temp. If you can watch coolant temp on something other than a dash guage (Silverleaf, Aladdin etc.) you will see that the fan comes on at some point after engine thermostat opening temp. My Dynasty will idle around campgrounds and run slow speeds up to about 50mph with only the water pump and rad keeping the temp to about 190 and no need for the hyd fan or dust blowing. The FDCA is normally set to let engine temp run up to about 200 then cycle fan on to cool down to 182 or so, then off and repeats. If you are always blowing dust you either have a connection problem or the FDCA is out of parameters, and you are using lots more diesel than necessary! :(

These temps are progamable by the chassis/coach builder based on what they think your coach will run with available cooling, loads etc. then they hope to hit a happy medium. That is why in all the threads you have ever read almost no one has the same temps. The guy who is trying to do anything with a C-H analog dash guage is just guessing in any case on cooling temps.

I chose a 200-185 just to keep fan off above the engine thermostat closing point. JMHO That is a cooler than what the FDCA was doing when I bought this coach, and after lots of tech talks they were all happy with a 213 run temp and 225 trans temp with that level. Too hot for me! If my home built stays in the 185 -200, and it appears it will, I will be thrilled!
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Old 03-19-2011, 05:56 PM   #20
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The electronic hydraulic fan controller arrived this week and was installed on Thursday. We have driven about 25 miles in heavy traffic and open road driving and the temperatures have returned to what we used to experience (180 - 192 for the engine) and (200 - 220 for the transmission) in stop and go traffic. The high pitched whining noise present especially on shifting up and down is gone.

We think the problem was an intermittent one as the temps were sometimes in the normal range and the noise wasn't always present. Our fuel mileage had taken a nose dive during this time close to two MPG at times but then we were running the HydroHot on diesel and the generator a lot so we thought that was contributing to the loss in MPG. We aren't sure how long the problem existed and tried to convince Cummins in Houston, TX that there was a problem but they couldn't find it even with all the symptoms present. Cummins in Ocala had just about convinced us there wasn't a problem either but promised to do one final check. When the technician wiggled the wiring harness the fan came on high even when the engine was cool. They said the wiring to the unit was unsupported and that might have been the reason or maybe the controller was bad. Finally, they agreed that we DID INDEED have a problem. Thanks to IRV2, Engineer Mike's writeup on how these fan controller animals work, and Jim Munsil, I had located the part we needed before they did. They ordered it through a company (Hydro Power, Inc.) in Ocala who ordered it from Sauer-Danfoss. The numbers are printed on the part so it might be a good idea to record yours in case this part fails and the tag becomes unreadable. It seems there have been a few fail from what we are hearing. Our part number was 1091170 FDCA NC 12VDC 1.2A HP3000 S/W Parameter P0184204090A, S/N 1200184, Date 6/04.

The part had to be programmed and took about 12 days to get there from Ames, IA. That was by air express. From the pictures of the part it looked to be the size of a cigarette pack but it was much larger than that. They sent the entire mechanism causing the air freight to be $190.00. Wouldn't do the air freight again but we were dealing with a possible family emergency back home and wanted to get it fixed as soon as possible in case we had to hit the road quickly. The part cost $662.48 plus tax and we had a total of about four hours labor involved in diagnosing and installing the part. Our CSP helped with a good portion of the cost.

We have heard there is a fellow who rebuilds them so we are planning to have the old one refurbished. Still trying to track him down through Twomed. We will keep you posted as we get more miles on it. Photos of the part will be forthcoming, I hope.
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Old 03-19-2011, 06:26 PM   #21
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Are you able to see the circuit board and connectors easily (ie without a major dis-assembly that might cause more problems) on the old unit? If so, can you visually inspect it to see if there is a poor connection or break before you have it rebuilt? An intermittent problem that responds to a jiggle test is a classic board/connector failure.

Thanks, and happy that you finally nailed the problem.
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Old 03-19-2011, 06:56 PM   #22
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Here is a photo of the electronic hydraulic fan controller. Get out that "big sweaty wad of money if you need one!
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Old 03-19-2011, 06:59 PM   #23
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Thanks Bluepill! I should have mentioned that is what Chuck plans to do next is disassemble it as much as possible and look for a loose/broken connection or wire. Rebuilding it will be when all else fails. Having been in electronics for years that was his first thought, too.
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Old 04-09-2011, 07:26 AM   #24
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Update: We traveled from Florida to Indiana (1,000 miles+) in a hurry and are happy to report that the electronic hydraulic fan controller fixed our problems. The annoying whining noise in the back is gone, our fuel mileage has improved nicely, we have more power overall, and the temps have returned to what they were previously. The coolant temp is now in the 190's instead of the 170 - 180's and the transmission temp is now in the 205 range instead of the 190's. Once again, the Alpine Apex is running like we remembered .

So if you are experiencing any of the above problems, don't give up on trying to convince the technicians that you have a problem . Persistence pays off.

After we get settled, Chuck will be checking out the faulty controller prior to seeing about getting it rebuilt and we'll let you know what he finds.

Thanks to all on IRV2 who helped with this problem during a very difficult time for us. Safe travels to all!
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Old 04-21-2011, 07:25 PM   #25
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Chuck and Marca,
I have a similar issue and it looks like I will need a new controller as well. I would like to have my old one rebuilt to use as a spare so if you have any info on who or where I can send it to be rebuilt, I would appreciate the info.

Thanks,
Pete
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Old 04-22-2011, 11:00 AM   #26
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Hi Pete,
Twomed replied earlier that the place was near Atlanta and that the information was on the BAC board and that I could e-mail Richard Ames. I just now sent Twomed a private message asking where I find the BAC board and how I get Richard Ames's e-mail address.

Will let you know as soon as we find out anything.
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Old 04-22-2011, 08:58 PM   #27
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Chuck,
Thank you for the info. Do you remember if the wiring connectors for the controller were on the wires when you received the new one or did the old connectors have to be moved over from the old to the new?

Thanks,
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Old 04-26-2011, 05:24 PM   #28
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Pete,

The wiring connectors were on the wires of the new controller when it arrived at Cummins in Ocala. To the best of our knowledge it was simply a plug it in install and they didn't have to use any of the old connectors. According to Cummins fastening it securely took the most time.

Hope this helps. Let us know if you have any more questions.

Marca
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