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Old 01-01-2009, 04:36 PM   #1
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Hello All,

We are looking at a 2000 Phaeton on a Freightliner chassis with a Cummins 260 and Allison 5 speed. I have tried to do some research and I can not find where Tiffin made the Phaeton before 2001. I think before that it was an Allegro Bay Pusher? But this one is titled as 2000 and has a 2000 sticker on the side by the door and Phaeton decals all over it. Also, he states that the chassis is not air ride but is on springs? Is that right for the Freightliner chassis? What kind of ride can we expect from that? Any concerns over the 260 Cummins or Allison 5 speed? FYI it has 22,000 miles, 182 hours on 7.5 diesel gen, and looks very nice. We are going to be able to purchase it for $35,000, any opinions on that? Thanks a ton in advance!

Brian Robertson
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Old 01-01-2009, 04:36 PM   #2
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Hello All,

We are looking at a 2000 Phaeton on a Freightliner chassis with a Cummins 260 and Allison 5 speed. I have tried to do some research and I can not find where Tiffin made the Phaeton before 2001. I think before that it was an Allegro Bay Pusher? But this one is titled as 2000 and has a 2000 sticker on the side by the door and Phaeton decals all over it. Also, he states that the chassis is not air ride but is on springs? Is that right for the Freightliner chassis? What kind of ride can we expect from that? Any concerns over the 260 Cummins or Allison 5 speed? FYI it has 22,000 miles, 182 hours on 7.5 diesel gen, and looks very nice. We are going to be able to purchase it for $35,000, any opinions on that? Thanks a ton in advance!

Brian Robertson
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Old 01-01-2009, 08:51 PM   #3
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The earliest Phaeton chassis, or any other Tiffin product, the Freightliner Custom Chassis site has listed is 2002 and all chassis listed are air ride suspensions.

The earliest Phaeton listed on NADA is 2001. See Allegro NADA

Check your service records. That's very little mileage and time on the genset. These things work better if, like us, they are exercised regularly. Onan manual calls for 2 hours a month under half load. Check and make sure everything works. At that age, price get pretty subjective based on how well the unit has been taken care of and what you're willing to pay.
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Old 01-02-2009, 03:31 AM   #4
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If you haven't already done it, you might want to call Tiffin with the serial number and check the history of the coach.
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Old 01-02-2009, 04:34 AM   #5
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Thanks guys. Tiffin is closed until Monday and we are driving up (2 states) tomorrow to look at it. If it is air ride vs. spring, what would I see underneath? I know the old p32 chassis well but never owned or looked at an air ride chassis.
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Old 01-02-2009, 06:00 AM   #6
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Well a Freightliner with springs is exactly that. You will see leaf springs both front and back. Air suspension uses airbags instead of springs. The number or air bags per axle varies some. The air suspension will also have a self leveling system without jacks and will settle down after you shut off the motor and raise back up once you start up again. If it was me I would NEVER own another leaf spring suspended motorhome. They are OK on a smooth newly paved road but they are few and far between. The ruts, potholes and expansion joints will drive you crazy with a leaf spring suspension and that is why they came out with the airbag suspension.
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Old 01-02-2009, 04:20 PM   #7
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mxrcr: I have no experience with Phaeton or Tiffin motorhomes...but
Chassis built date does not always/or often agree with the model year of the coach. Try calling Freightliner 1-800-385-4357 with the VIN number (normally just the last six digits.)
The chassis sounds like an XCS chassis which is the same as on my 2000 Georgie Boy, also with the Cummins ISB 260 and Allison 5 Spd. It has a parabolic leaf spring suspension and has an excellent ride. There were some suspension mods, new shocks and sway bars that Freightliner did as a chassis service update. Ask Freightliner if that chassis has been modified, (CSU 32/04)
My chassis is quiet, handles well, and averages right at 11 mpg, with good power response.
I believe the XCS is the only Freightliner chassis in that time frame with leaf springs. In fact some later versions of the XCS had Air suspension. The XCS is a smaller version of the XC chassis and shares a lot of systems with the bigger chassis.

Hope this helps...
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:49 AM   #8
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Hey Hooligan. You say you suspension doesn't hit holes and joints hard. I would be interseted as to what size tires you have and which tires you uses. Maybe it is all in my tires.
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Old 01-03-2009, 06:11 AM   #9
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Mike: Did not notice much difference when I changed tires from Michelin XRV 235/80 22.5 to the Goodyear G670RV 275/70 22.5. I did run both sets at recommended pressure for the axle weights.
The XCS chassis has long front springs with just 2 leaves and a fairly soft ride which is probably why the update was a heavy sway bar and a progressive shocks.

My previous MH, 90 GeorgieBoy (gas) on a John Deere/Oshkosh chassis, had short stiff leaf springs, with several leaves in a stack and you could feel every expansion joint.
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Old 01-03-2009, 06:26 AM   #10
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Great info guys, thanks. We have put off going to look at this RV until tomorrow while I gain more knowledge. Looks like I will check it for the updates, and if not done, if all else checks out good, we will look into getting the updates done now.

Hooligan, I notice over the past few years several posts saying Monroe and FL are out of stock on the shocks, are they available now and if not what is the newest substitute options? Also are the swaybars still available and if not does someone make something comparable?
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Old 01-03-2009, 07:03 PM   #11
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mxrcr: Not sure about the availability of the shocks or the swaybars. Both may be available through Freightliner. Apparently the shocks were developed by Monroe to meet Freightliner testing. OEM shocks were Gabriel's
This is a previous discussion on the XCS chassis, and Charles replaced the shocks and had the sway control installed by Freightliner. Here

Good luck on your trip..
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Old 01-03-2009, 09:48 PM   #12
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Tiffin did make the Phaeton DP in 2000, along with the Allegro Bus, and Zephyr!
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Old 01-05-2009, 04:23 AM   #13
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Okay guys, we bought the RV, it is in great condition and rode very well. Here is what I found and my next questions...My shock #s are front a black Freightliner shock 16-15581-000, rear black Freightliner 16-15592-000, are these the updated ones? There are some white square looking shims in the sides of the front mount of the front leaf springs, are these the spacers? I do not see what looks like any traditional sway bars on front or rear, where exactly does the update sway bar mount and what does it look like?
Thank you in advance! Brian
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Old 01-05-2009, 04:20 PM   #14
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mxrcr: Congratulations, Tiffin has an excellent reputation for quality and I think you will really enjoy your new motorhome.
The front sway bar is mounted below the spring mounts, runs all the way across in front of the axle to outboard of the springs and then goes forward about 15 inches parallel to the springs. It's about 1.5 inch in diameter. The shocks..my front 16-16043-00 and rear 16-15592-000? I'm sure Freightliner could tell from their records if the update was completed or the status of parts to do the update now. Anything in the new MH records on the update?
Freightliner has an online service, "Accessfreightliner", you can get part illustrations and numbers, wiring diagrams and recall/warranty info for your chassis by serial number. You register Here (click; Register for access, Owner) Try to go online about once a month or the service will drop you.
Freightliner also has a pub, "Know your chassis" has explaination of maintenance requirements and procedures, with pictures and cautions. Very handy, it's primarily for XC chassis by again the XCS uses a lot of the same systems. Download Here .

Hope this helps, and enjoy your motorhome.....
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