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Old 04-16-2019, 01:59 PM   #1
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Just ordered Bigfoot Automatic Leveling System for Wayfarer

Okay. I finally caved. After being too jealous of the new 2019 Tiffin Wayfarers having this as an option I bit the bullet and ordered an auto leveling kit. Was pleasantly surprised with the discount for the fully automatic system. For Tiffin Wayfarers they have to ship longer bolts than for some of their other Sprinter chassis based systems. Now I get to wait for delivery and then to try to perform the install myself. Fingers crossed!

Best,
-Mark
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Old 04-16-2019, 04:06 PM   #2
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Mark, as you might already know, Tiffin is now using the Big Foot brand on the Wayfarer for 2020. they are suppose to be less weight than what they were installing in 2019.
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Old 04-16-2019, 04:58 PM   #3
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Curious as to how this is going to affect your OCCC? Systems were weighing around 300 - 350 pounds, installed if I recall correctly and the Sprinter is a pretty limited capacity to begin with as I found on the one I had. But - auto levelers are really nice!!
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Old 04-16-2019, 10:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighDesert View Post
Curious as to how this is going to affect your OCCC? Systems were weighing around 300 - 350 pounds, installed if I recall correctly and the Sprinter is a pretty limited capacity to begin with as I found on the one I had. But - auto levelers are really nice!!
Bigfoot shared with me it is 130 lbs dry and up to 180 lbs full up with hydraulic fluid. Between dumping more than half my battery weight by going lithium, removing the Equalizer stabilizers (redundant with auto revelers), removing my two sets of leveling blocks, etc. it'll come out almost a wash. I also noticed at a RV show Tiffin went with aluminum wheels vs steel and inserts on models with Equalizer levelers... That'd be another 70 pounds of bonus savings. Worst case I have 53 lbs of Travl'r satellite dish and DirecTV I never use as streaming services seem to have all the content I want nowadays. Can you tell the levelers are going to win?

Best,
-Mark
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Old 04-17-2019, 11:01 AM   #5
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Sounds like an excellent setup that was well thought out. Be really nice the first time you pull up in the pouring rain!
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Old 04-23-2019, 11:45 PM   #6
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UPS dropped off five boxes today from Quadra with all the Bigfoot components. Also came with detailed installation manual and template. Will see what happens this weekend and if I have to punt on doing the install myself or not.

Best,
-Mark
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Old 04-24-2019, 02:15 AM   #7
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Good luck! Let us know how the install goes.
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Old 04-24-2019, 05:55 AM   #8
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...as a side note.... If you want to do a practice-install before you tackle your rig, I'm in North Alabama... I'd let you practice on my coach for free....
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Old 04-24-2019, 06:53 PM   #9
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Mark, you are a person I can identify with, a Do-it-yourselfer. Good luck on your install and keep us posted. Maybe you should first take out all the parts and weigh them, so you know how much it actually added to the RV, or you might have done that already?


Do you do your own Sprinter maintenance? I plan to do whatever I am able to do when I get my Wayfarer.
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Old 04-24-2019, 10:57 PM   #10
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Red face

Quote:
Originally Posted by Travelino View Post
Mark, you are a person I can identify with, a Do-it-yourselfer. Good luck on your install and keep us posted. Maybe you should first take out all the parts and weigh them, so you know how much it actually added to the RV, or you might have done that already?


Do you do your own Sprinter maintenance? I plan to do whatever I am able to do when I get my Wayfarer.
Thanks. So the plan is to start this weekend on it unless the wife's honey do list wins. Plan is to weigh stuff going on and coming off.

I try to do my own maintenance, but sometimes I punt. The Onan hit its first 20 hours and one year anniversary last week. Since Cummings has a setup in Portland I decided to let them do it and I'd then also have an official receipt for the log book.

Best,
-Mark
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Old 04-29-2019, 11:10 AM   #11
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Update...

I am impressed by what I received from Quadra Manufacturing. I was able to install all four Bigfoot jacks this weekend, but still have more work to go.

The hardest part was removing 2 of the four bolts that Tiffin uses on each side to add the chassis frame extension to the back of the RV. The bolts are installed such that they are inserted from the outside and the nuts are threaded on and tightened on the inside. You can easily remove the nuts, but then the bolts cannot be slid out as the generator is up against them on the passenger side and a storage bay box blocks the driver side. Had to use a sawzall with a carbide metal blade to cut off the bolt heads so I could pull the shafts inward and out of the holes. Pulling out the cut off bolt shafts also being a pain. Then I had to use a grinder with a cutoff disk to cut down the excess threads which were protruding from the other chassis extension bolts. This took more than half my time Saturday. Adding the two rear jacks and crossbar was very easy compared to the prep work. I did one side at a time. Was easy to line up the jacks as either the holes line up or they don't. I packed it in late Saturday afternoon. 5 hours... I'd say a third of my time was crawling around as I was doing in my driveway, using the angle of the entrance from the curb and sidewalk to lift the back end up vs using jacks or ramps. Call me paranoid... That said I was able to sit upright under the rear as I worked.

Sunday ended up being about removing my Equalizer stabilizer jacks and installing the front hydraulic jacks. This time I used the street gutter as my access under the vehicle given my lack of trust in jacks or ramps when under a vehicle. The electric stabilizers I removed were heavier than I imagined so I used a jack to keep them in place while removing all the bolts that mated them to the chassis frame rails. They are sitting in the garage and I'll get around to weighing them later.

Installing the front jacks took me the rest of Sunday. I used the supplied template, took the leap of faith, and drilled the two holes in the floorboard on each side. No going back now. These hold the jacks up against the frame while driving down the road. Trying to ensure the jacks were mounted level was a challenge given the vehicle was at an angle. I had to use a crowbar a few times to line things up as bolts were tightened. I then torqued them all to spec, which is straight forward but a pain while laying on your back with minimal clearance.

I then planned out where to put the tank and pump unit. On my vehicle on the driver side chassis rail mid coach ahead of the differential seems like the only place that would work with the supplied install bracket. After 7 hours on Sunday I packed it in...

Next weekend comes me mounting the tank, hydraulic and electrical lines, installing the control panel, wiring it up, flushing the lines, and testing the system. I'll keep you posted ..

Best,
-Mark
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Old 04-29-2019, 07:39 PM   #12
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Mark,
You certainly have the essential characteristic needed - perseverance.
What do-it-yourselfer that succeeds requires.


My wife and I have built our current house and our previous house. We know how that goes.

I'm still working on getting my toad ready, as we expect our Wayfarer in about 3 weeks now.


Soon, you'll be pushing a button, and watch it all level up automatically. And not have to get under it (until your next project).
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Old 05-06-2019, 09:36 AM   #13
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Update... And the install is completed! Spent this weekend hanging the central pump housing, running hydraulic and electrical, hooking it all up, mounting my control unit and panel, flushing air out of the lines, and calibrating what "level" is. I must have gone through 30 to 40 zip ties. If the main power cable had been two inches shorter I would have hated life though as I hate spices or extensions of power cables carrying that much juice. Good news is it was exactly the perfect length.

All and all I'm impressed. Works great and rig is back in storage. If you can turn a wrench and do simple electrical you can install yourself if you don't mind spending two weekends crawling around on your back and skinning a knuckle or two.

While I was under the rig and already having to route wires to my entry cabinet wall I added a switch in parallel to my screen door closed detection circuit. Now I can lie to the coach and tell it the door is closed even when opened if I ever want to prevent the steps from going out.

Best,
-Mark
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Old 05-07-2019, 07:58 PM   #14
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Mark,
Great that you were able to complete and your happy with it. How much did it weigh? Also how much does a jack extend beyond where it would start to touch the ground when the coach is level. I am wondering this when it comes to uneven RV sites and how much one or more jacks can come down to compensate for low areas. I guess another way to put it, is how high can you raise the front end on even surfaces. Not that you would normally do that, but it would give an idea of how much the jack can extend beyond the tires when the coach is already level.
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