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Old 05-29-2005, 10:14 PM   #1
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I took a short trip to Las Vegas this weekend and about 70 miles into it, my transmission went into the "limp mode" 1st gear only and displayed "Shift Inhibit" on the dash. I pulled over and called Saddleback RV and spoke to the service people and they were all stumped. They called Alpine and had Mark call and together we found out the code "Lo-79" meant high temperature transmission fluid. I cooled it off for about 15 minutes and drove off. I did this about 6 times and got to LV in 8 hours (250 miles). I got home ok by disconnecting the toad and having my father drive it home. If I can't tow, I bought the wrong coach.

My coach has been parked at Saddleback RV for more than 70% of the time since I bought the coach in late Feb. this year. Even the GM and the sales people feel sympathetic about all the issues I am having with this coach. Every time I get to the dealer, I have a long list. I've had issues with; inverter/generator, charging system, ABS, black tank, stress lins, electronics, interior finishes, exterior finishes, numbers of quality issues, check engine light and this. I was supposed to return it to Saddleback on Tuesday for a few things they couldn't finish in time for my trip.

I am not feeling so secure about taking long trips. I sure hope I am near the end of my Alpine troubles because I have other things to worry and care for.

Yes, this one is a new coach.

P.S. The Saddlebcak RV boys are great so far but the jokes are not funny anymore. I am sure they are getting tired of seeing me there almost every week.

David
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Old 05-29-2005, 10:14 PM   #2
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I took a short trip to Las Vegas this weekend and about 70 miles into it, my transmission went into the "limp mode" 1st gear only and displayed "Shift Inhibit" on the dash. I pulled over and called Saddleback RV and spoke to the service people and they were all stumped. They called Alpine and had Mark call and together we found out the code "Lo-79" meant high temperature transmission fluid. I cooled it off for about 15 minutes and drove off. I did this about 6 times and got to LV in 8 hours (250 miles). I got home ok by disconnecting the toad and having my father drive it home. If I can't tow, I bought the wrong coach.

My coach has been parked at Saddleback RV for more than 70% of the time since I bought the coach in late Feb. this year. Even the GM and the sales people feel sympathetic about all the issues I am having with this coach. Every time I get to the dealer, I have a long list. I've had issues with; inverter/generator, charging system, ABS, black tank, stress lins, electronics, interior finishes, exterior finishes, numbers of quality issues, check engine light and this. I was supposed to return it to Saddleback on Tuesday for a few things they couldn't finish in time for my trip.

I am not feeling so secure about taking long trips. I sure hope I am near the end of my Alpine troubles because I have other things to worry and care for.

Yes, this one is a new coach.

P.S. The Saddlebcak RV boys are great so far but the jokes are not funny anymore. I am sure they are getting tired of seeing me there almost every week.

David
05
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Old 05-30-2005, 04:00 AM   #3
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I really do understand how you feel. We had lots of issues with our new coach (04). It is still under warranty but the clock is ticking as we only had a 1 year with the 04.

Have you talked directly to WRV. We were given tthe name of the Service VP and talked to him directly about several items. His name is Mike Glazier and we found that he was really interested in making us happy.

Our toad is heavier than most and have never had a problem with the overheating so it has to be another issue.

Hope you can get comfortable with long trips. We made a trip to California and back and only got standed once.
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Old 05-30-2005, 07:24 AM   #4
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David

I sympathize with you, we also had major issues with our 2000 Alpine but stuck with it and now have a great coach. I'm sure you have heard this before but all coaches have issues or owners who don't recognize the problems and live with them.

I would call Mike Glazier tomorrow if I were you. He is the "go to guy" at WRV if all your other avenues to resolve problems are exhausted. Tell him hello from me and that I told you to call.

Danny
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Old 05-30-2005, 10:25 AM   #5
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Hello Dave:

Sorry to hear about all of the problems do not give up they will get fixed. We all have experienced some problems some more than others. As for you transmission over heating I find it hard to believe it over heating, because I pull a ton Suburban 4X4 and we have never experienced any problems of it overheating. I have pulled the Suburban from So Cal to Washington for Homecoming and to Branson for Homecoming without a problem. I have a VMS 200 and I monitor it especially when pulling long grades and the Transmission never gets to 200º. Their must be something wrong with the transmission or possibly a bad sensor. I would suggest taking it to a Detroit/Allison Dealer for a check up, they should be able to find and repair the problem.

Dave
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Old 05-30-2005, 12:31 PM   #6
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Wow, your shakedown issues make mine sound like a piece of cake! (fingers crossed, knock on wood)

With a transmission issue the people talk to is Allison. The vehicle is designed tow up to 10,000 pounds.

Audrey
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Old 05-31-2005, 10:19 AM   #7
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I dropped off my rig with Saddleback this morning. Just this month, I had more than 15 issues with the coach. I also left a new long list again with small things along with the "major issue".

The toad I have is also heavy 02 Excursion 4x4 PSD. It shouldn't make a difference. I have other friends with smaller pushers with about the same wt. toads. I am sure it has something to do with electronics but I don't want to be the "vehicle quality tester" for any MFG.

If I pay more for a "quality", I should expect it. Otherwise, I could have saved money and bought a cheap motorhome. I do understand that fact that I will find things but let's be real, I pay more to Not have these problems.

Allison will have to take the coach and match the condition that I was in to figure out what the problems were.

I belong to numbers of automobile related clubs, MBZ, AUDI and an off-road clubs and I haul cars all the time for shows, rockcrawling events and so on. My friends haven't see the coach yet since it spends more time at the service. I am afraid to tell the friends that I bought a "problem vehicle" (guys ego thing). I have been hiding the facts from them for four months. I have a club event in June but I am tempted to cancel at this point.

I will call WRV today and see what they can do other than listening my complaints.

David
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Old 05-31-2005, 01:06 PM   #8
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Temp problem is not likely a problem due to temp (could be, just not the way to bet), but more likely temp reading/analysis/reporting. Whether it is overheating or not, Allison or WRV should handle it easily (IIRC, the trannies come to WRV on a pallet, so who did the problem-causing thing is an issue between them). The design is not in question; just the execution.

This is a good reason to carry an infra-red thermometer (about $50 for one that reads to 500F). Could have shot the tranny temp to verify as high or not, and maybe obviated the "we gotta duplicate the fault" whine (if temp isn't actually high they know it is a reading/ana... issue; if it is high they still might not have to make it hot if they know it is overheating).

I can certainly see your worry over having a coach @ the dealer 70% of its first 4 months."I pay more to Not have these problems." Unfortunately I'm not sure WRV agrees w/that (or that you'll find a substantially different attitude elsewhere in the industry). Car manufacturers have adopted a six sigma process that makes new car owning a rare pleasure. RV mfgr's have not, so we don't get the benefit of the component-pre-test/assembly-pre-test quality assurance systems the car guys follow (e.g. solenoids seem like one of those gizmos that if they were randomly tested to destruction & analyzed/improved, a lot of in-service failures would not be). If one outfit would start flogging 6-sigma QA/QC, the others would demand it of their supply chain & assembly line, & we would all have an easier time debugging.
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Old 05-31-2005, 03:10 PM   #9
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I knew for a fact that the transmission fluid was not hot. It had something to do with sensors and from what I understand, there are about 10 sensors along with this tranny. Whatever it is, I sure hope they go through every one of them and make sure I do not have anymore problems.

Just to let you know, I had too many issues with this coach for ANY motor vehicle standard.

Internals; charging problem (Echo Charger installed), ABS light, brake noise, suspension noise, check engine, steering squeal, high idle switch does not work, plastic/wire burning smell, and now the transmission, Shift Inhibit.

Electronics; inverter/generator failed (new inverter installed), sunshade switch broken, RCA (audio)lines not installed, 12 volt fuses all loose, dash lights not working, 12 volt output reversed, water pump switch reversed, remote eye not working, helogen light bulb fail, "Jacks Down" msg. on highway speed, room slide made loud noise, Atica dash dies and come back alive, jumpy gauges and transmission temp light when it is not even hot.

Interior; broken tiles, broken door latches/guides, rattles created by bad fiberglass weld, stair riser peeling, door screen seals and latch (poor fix), stair threshold at the top needed to be filed since I got a cut on my foot from it, missing wood base, waredrobe door frame bent, missing screws and broken tabs, bad guides for center console, rattles and poor latches for flying doors when making turns.

Exterior; body stress crack marks around the passenger side mirror, faded window frame, peeled paint, faded radiator grill, poor fiberglass weld at the fender (rattle), missing bolt for storage lock and minor scratches.

Plumbing; broken fitting at the flush connection and water fill fitting broken to POUR out water.

Many of these things were fixed and I still have about a dozen things of the list that they need to finish.

How is that for quality? I know I will have issues but I bought the coach to enjoy life and not to worry about every trip I am about to take.

I spoke to Mike from Western RV today and he is aware of my issues but what can he do? All I can do is to take the coach back over and over until it is fixed. Hey, maybe I can cancel my storage contract and have Saddleback RV keep it in their storage.

One thing good about this is that I haven't had to wash the coach since Saddleback guys always wash it when they let me have the coach for my short trips.

David
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Old 06-03-2005, 11:24 AM   #10
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David, the same happened to me about 6 months ago, sound like the exact problem. Took it to the allison service dealer and they checked the trans computer, found that some kind of sensor was the problem, had to tear the trans apart to replace. NO Problems since. Good luck, Jeff
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Old 06-03-2005, 11:50 AM   #11
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George, how long did that take for them to fix?
Thanks.
David
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Old 06-04-2005, 05:15 AM   #12
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Took it in one day and had it back the next. Western Branch Diesel did the work, I dont know if there is a branch there where you are but any Allison service center can fix it. You need them to read the trans computer and that will tell them what caused the problem.
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Old 06-06-2005, 06:33 AM   #13
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Dave, thought I'd check my records and found this happened to me March '04 about a year after i bought the coach. I found that the failing code on the transmission was # 050, and the part number they had to replace was # 29537371. Hope this helps you.
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Old 06-06-2005, 08:59 AM   #14
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My code was LO-079, high temperature. It is going to Allison today.

the dealer called me today and wanted my keys for the hitch which I didn't bring. They are going to drive a car behind.

David
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