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Old 07-03-2017, 03:44 PM   #1
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2013 Allegro Bus Engine Access Hatch

Thought i would take a shot here for help (Also posted in the TiffinRV network forum) I need to pull the access hatch in the closet over the engine to redo the insulation. Its come loose around the hatch. I have a 45 fr LP floor plan.

I have been back and forth, top and bottom, on the phone with Red Bay twice. They insist there are either "handles that release" the access panel or screws holding it in under carpet. I have attached a picture of the access panel and the lower/pre-step panel. I can take off the lower panel before the step but the other does not budge (perhaps a little towards the front).

Unfortunately there are no "handles" to release the hatch on the 2013/my model. There are some indentations where i would think clamps MIGHT go just above the back of the engine on the floor.

I assume they started including the clamps after 2013.

Net is is i cannot get the access hatch to move. Asking if anyone knows if there another possibility that the access panel only slides in under some lip and i need to pull it up from the front or the back first?

I have some "industrial" suction grips to try but dont want to "rip" the floor apart if something is holding it in place.

If I dont get the hatch off i need to figure out how to redo the insulation over from underneath

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks

Tom
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Old 07-03-2017, 03:54 PM   #2
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2013 Allegro Bus Engine Access Hatch

Have you tried removing the screws on the riser between the two access panels? With the lower access panel removed, can you use a mirror to see the latch mechanism(s) of the upper panel from the bottom?
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Old 07-03-2017, 04:04 PM   #3
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i have had the lower part off. Taking the 5 screws out the only thing behind appears to be solid wood. The piece on the floor (lower) comes up easily. Had a mirror but didnt see anything. There is a large shield cover over something preventing me from reaching through to the underside of the panel. Thinking of removing that shield and then pulling off the old from the underside. Its something.

Been told the larger panel itself is pretty heavy/tight. Tiffin support mentioned they use the heavy duty suction cups.

Want to be careful that i dont break any seals I need to keep exhaust from coming in if I do get it off and put it back on.

Thanks
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Old 09-15-2017, 02:39 PM   #4
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I had a 2013 AB 45LP and needed to do the same modification/upgrade to the heat shielding. I feel your pain! (It wasn't part of the original plan, but after I finished the work I got a deal on a new Newmar I couldn't refuse ... so I traded the 45LP!!)

Back to the cover. First of all, I did manage to remove the small front cover, the one that's a step up into the closet. It revealed a metal baffle, not sure what it does except maybe to help get access for servicing the drive axle? The main hatch cover was stuck tight, I released the over-center latches (they're not handles), but that wasn't the problem. I bought 2 large tiling suction cups and used them on the floor, on the rear-most part of the hatch (the front of the hatch, near the step, engages in a slot under the floor.). No matter how hard I pulled, they wouldn't budge the hatch either! I called both Red Bay and my dealer for advice ... no ideas, a complete waste of time. Finally, I put a small bottle jack on the top of the engine and positioned the head under the hatch cover, near the passenger side latch pad ... and slowly cranked it up. I worked it very carefully, my plan being to switch to the other side as the hatch came up. However, there was a "pop" and the hatch came free! The "pop" was a tile breaking! It was adjacent to the hatch, on the fixed part of the floor ... the tile had a circular cut to accommodate the hatch opening. I've attached a photo of the corner of the hatch cover, after I had removed it. The 2 screws had clearly been inserted through the flooring to hold the hatch cover in place ... before the floor was tiled! You can also see the plywood cut-out comes beyond the edge of the tile. So, the reason why the floor wouldn't come up was the screws, the extended plywood lip was the reason for the tile breaking. There was also a lot of grout or setting compound which had oozed into the hatch gap, making the fit very tight. In addition to applying new heat shielding (I used a self adhesive material from Heatshield Products, which is used in hot rod firewalls.) I cleaned up the debris around the opening, trimmed the plywood and cut off the 2 screws before reinstalling the hatch ... also re-set the broken tile, although the break was visible.

For me it was a defining moment as a Tiffin customer. I called Red Bay, also had my dealer work their contacts, not only on this, but also a hydraulic coupling which must have been dropped into the radiator shroud during manufacture, between the fan and radiator, completely destroying the fan as is bounced around while we toured the country. Not a single reply, total radio silence! Before I bought my Newmar, I had the dealer pull up the rear engine hatch ... which was easy, no issues, way better engineered.

Good luck!
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