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Old 04-05-2016, 07:09 AM   #1
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BANG-JUMP-JERK-SLIP of HWH jacks on a Spartan Chassis

We just traded up to a 40' 2008 Dutch Star. On jack retraction there are many very loud banging sounds accompanied by sharp and strong jumping and jerking of the MH. It happens on hard or soft surfaces, but is much worse when on a hard surface. The jack feet will jerk and slide as they gain or lose traction. Also, the entire MH will slide forward as much as 6"-8", scrubbing the tires as it moves. All of this happens when deploying the jacks, too, though not as badly. However, because the jack feet will be slipping and moving during deployment or retraction, I have to be very careful if placing any blocks, as the jack feet will try to slip off the blocks. I've already had one instance where a jack cylinder end and the foot slipped apart because of this. The foot was retained by the springs, so it wasn't lost, but it was quite difficult wrestling against the spring pressure to get it back into place. Fortunately this happened at home where I had more tools on hand to work with.

The jacks are angled outward very noticeably, especially the right side ones, it seems. They seem angled slightly rearward as well. They also apparently have a swivel built into them so that they can move. I'd seen somewhere, but failed to save and copy, that the angles and swivel are built into many/most/all(?) HWH jacks.

A Newmar tech rep claimed to be unaware of this problem and seemed concerned that something serious was wrong. An HWH tech rep said this problem was typical on a Spartan chassis, but he had no advice about dealing with it, nor any explanation of why it happens on a Spartan chassis.

I plan to visit 1-2 dealers soon to see if there is any structural or other problem that has possibly occurred and caused what might be a small problem to become so large. But I'd like to know what others have experienced:

1. Does everyone with HWH jacks on a Spartan chassis have this problem?
2. Is there a solution, or at least something that can be done to make substantial improvement?

If a dealer visit reveals nothing wrong, all I can think to do is to get larger blocks so that I can reduce the likelihood of slipping off the blocks and possibly dislodging a jack foot again. Doing without blocks is not always possible, as soft ground and/or inclined sites are almost everywhere and not entirely avoidable.

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Old 04-05-2016, 07:15 AM   #2
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Sounds like you dont have the parking brake on.
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Old 04-05-2016, 07:16 AM   #3
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I can't speak to all of what you are talking about but one trick when using jack pads is to dump the bags first before placing pads. The Spartan chassis will roll/slide forward a few inches when you do that so this will help you to more accurately place your pads.

I doubt this will address your other issues but who knows.
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Old 04-05-2016, 07:22 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mojoracing View Post
Sounds like you dont have the parking brake on.
That would be odd for anyone. See my post about the chassis roll/slide after dumping air bags. On a rare occasion when I retract jacks I get some minor sounds like the OP talks about.

One thing that seems to help is to make sure the coach air tanks are fully aired up before retracting jacks. not sure if this is coincidental or not. The coach will roll/slide back a few inches as the jacks raise and the air bags inflate. I suppose it is possible that by getting the tanks to full pressure that the bags lift faster and thus unload the jack weight before the roll/slide causes the grinding.
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Old 04-05-2016, 08:30 AM   #5
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If jacks are on a swivel they may be "kick jacks" meaning they ride horizontal then kick down to deploy.

Ours are these.

They should be kicked while on ride air as they need good clearance possibly to go all the way down.

Be sure nothing is binding them as they need to be close to vertical as possible to insure straight up motion.

Others with same exact model need to contribute as they may have exact information specific to your rig.
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Old 04-05-2016, 08:44 AM   #6
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even the straight acting jacks slide forward on the spartan chassis. when the jacks are deployed, the rear end rolls up. when the jacks are retracted, the rear end rolls down, and the movement is noticed. it slides the coacj and the jacks forward sometimes 6 to 7 inches
. this is a common happening with this chassis. i believe there is no fix for it. it does no damage unless you park it facing a wall real close. most spartan chassis owners will confirm this action
.yes its noisy, and alarming when you dont expect it, but it does no harm as far as i have seen.
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Old 04-05-2016, 08:46 AM   #7
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Dont know about your brand of rig or you rig in particular but depending on how level the site was when you try to level, some slippage will occur--usually sounds worse than it is. Typical procedure when preparing to level is to set parking brake, deflate air bags then deploy jacks. Same for storing jack--start by raising jacks first. If you start the engine first an inflate the bags, some distortion in the jack alignment will likely occur. If "tire skid" is happening, guess you might release parking brake and hold rear tires gently with service brakes. In light of the severity you describe, think I would have your jacks inspected by a qualified tech--could be a bent or broken jack mounting.
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:52 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azpete View Post
even the straight acting jacks slide forward on the spartan chassis. when the jacks are deployed, the rear end rolls up. when the jacks are retracted, the rear end rolls down, and the movement is noticed. it slides the coacj and the jacks forward sometimes 6 to 7 inches
. this is a common happening with this chassis. i believe there is no fix for it. it does no damage unless you park it facing a wall real close. most spartan chassis owners will confirm this action
.yes its noisy, and alarming when you dont expect it, but it does no harm as far as i have seen.
Pete knows what he's talking about.

Additionally, my jacks also appear angled outward/inward when deployed.

If you want a real thrill, forget to store your jacks before airing up the chassis.
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Old 04-05-2016, 11:05 AM   #9
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Thank you all for the replies. The MH is a 2008 Newmar Dutch Star 40' on a Spartan chassis. To reply and clarify based on your responses:
1. The parking brake is on.
2. Air bag dump has not been working until lifted. I'll be fixing this. Once lifted and dump has occurred, and in an attempt to try to best understand the issue, I've lowered the MH and re-lifted. The problem will remain. (I didn't mention the dump not working in my original post since I did a work-around and the problem remained)
3. Airing up the bags might help , although it seems to require starting the engine, which results in the shrill warning buzzer going off. I'll try this technique again and see how it works.
4. Not kick jacks.
5. No binds are evident. I cleaned and wiped down the cylinder shaft, and shot penetrant onto the swivel areas. These did not help, as I realized later that the jerking and banging sounds and motions were coming from the jack feet holding and then releasing from ground contact, while made the MH scoot forward.
6. Sites have been generally level, though not zero degrees. They've mostly been WAY more than those I used with the old '99 Pace Arrow Vision 36Z gasser we traded off. The Pace never acted like this unless I overlooked something very elementary in setting up.
7. To AZPETE: You're confirming what I suspect is the case, and what the HWH rep said: that this is a characteristic behavior of HWH jacks on a Spartan chassis. What a disappointment of such an otherwise fine MH.

Thanks!
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Old 04-05-2016, 05:11 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by HECthe2 View Post
2. Air bag dump has not been working until lifted.

If I'm interpreting your post correctly, this is the root of your problem. Fix that and it becomes a non-issue.

As Pete said above, the motorhome will move forward some amount of inches when the bags dump, and rearward when the bags inflate. It's the geometry of the drivetrain changing as the bags deflate/inflate. If that movement is happening when the jacks are deployed, they are going to skid on whatever surface they are planted on and it sounds just as you describe.
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:05 PM   #11
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Sounds like the geometry of some part of the suspension and guessing rear axle is such that it pivots as it moves due to air springs the axle may be on a swing arm that may be short resulting in more movement than a longer one.

Just a guess and would be easy to observe from along side while a helper operates the controls.
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:42 PM   #12
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We had HWH on our Newmar Spartan and didn't have the problems you're questioning. I would guess it's the air bag issue.
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:57 PM   #13
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Our '02 DSDP 4090 on Spartan did the same thing as the OP's. Never caused any real problems other than having to reset the blocks under the jack pads if I misjudged the movement.
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TQ60 View Post
If jacks are on a swivel they may be "kick jacks" meaning they ride horizontal then kick down to deploy.

Ours are these.

They should be kicked while on ride air as they need good clearance possibly to go all the way down.

Be sure nothing is binding them as they need to be close to vertical as possible to insure straight up motion.

Others with same exact model need to contribute as they may have exact information specific to your rig.
Newmar uses straight acting, not kick down jacks on the DP's and maybe other models.
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