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Old 04-12-2010, 10:25 AM   #1
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Bent steps

For some reason my steps did not retract on the MH as we were leaving for the weekend and I caught them on the pole of the gate as we left. This of course bent them to the rear. Spent about an hour with a come-a-long to try to straighten them some. It helped a little but they will not retract but about half way. Just wonder if anyone else has had this happen and what to do about it. A new set of steps is about $650. Any ideas will be greatly appreciated.
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Old 04-12-2010, 11:39 AM   #2
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Have you tried pushing them in while retracting. If you can, you may be able to see where they are binding. Watch your fingers when you do this. If you do it multiple times it may shut the motor down to prevent overheating and destruction. It is mechanical, so if you keep adjusting, it should work unless a piece of the metal is cracked and that is where it is binding.
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Old 04-12-2010, 05:57 PM   #3
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Hi,
Did the same thing. Try the come-along plus a 5/10 lb. sledge. It took a while (I used my Jeep for an anchor), but eventually I got them back to where they work.Tension and then hammer. Pay particular attention to where they bind when hammering. I found it to be the first joint out from the MH.
Ernie
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Old 04-13-2010, 07:07 AM   #4
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When I did the same thing I removed the steps and used a log splitter as a press to take the kinks out.Then a good lube on all the pivot points and they work fine.
Bob
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Old 04-13-2010, 07:46 AM   #5
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Remove the step, bend all bars back or have new bars made. Reinstall. Happens all the time.
J
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Old 04-13-2010, 01:21 PM   #6
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Here is your ''red neck'' solution from Seajay the sailor man....
One ..... you probably have a ''double step'' that is held togethere with with ''riveted thingies'' that hold the rods to the step thingies...
Two..... Since it is usually impossible to remove the rivets that hold the complete mess together and since usually the ''rods'' are whats bent out of shape, here is what you need to do .....
Three. Get one of those little grinders from Lowes that has a 4 1/2 inch disk on it. Put on your ''goggles'' and grind the rivets off of everything and the complete mess will fall out on the ground.. Mark where everything came from or better still take a picture of it before you take it apart. Have a beer and rest up some....
Four.... take a large punch and beat the rest of the rivets out of the holes. Take the whole mess over to an anvil or your trailer hitch with the ball taken out of it and take a large hammer and a pair of vise grips and proceed with each to straighten each piece with the hammer holding the piece with the vice grips.
Five. now you have each ''piece'' as straight as you can get it. (it will have a few hammer tracks in each piece but that gives it a HAND MAde look that so many people love) Take a sample piece with holes in it to the hardware store and tell the clerk that you want some bolts of the proper size and some SELF LOCKING NUTS for same. Be careful not to get the bolts long or too short. You want them to go thru two pieces of metal and stick out the length of the self locking nut.
Six. Drink a beer because you are all hot and sweaty........
Seven. Get out your picture and try to figure out how the thing looked when you took it apart.
Eight..... have another beer....
Nine. Re-assemble the steps using the nuts and bolts but DO NOT TIGHTEN THE BOLTS TIGHT..... Leave some ''slack'' in them so the steps can move freely.
Ten...... Put some oil or WD40 on all the joints and test the steps.
Eleven. by doing this you can repair your steps with just a hammer and some time because you can now take them apart if necessary and straighten everything and put it all back together.

I ''fixed mine'' this way about five years ago when I hit a post and really warped everything out of shape on my coach. Pulling it with a come-a-long just dont work well because you apply unequal pressure to the steps in the wrong places. Remember, They are now bolted together and they can be fixed reasonably easily.
For all this information there will be a charge of ten cents and you must pay me the next time you see me.... of course .... if this dont work for you .....
I NEVER KNEW YOU .............LOL............
Seajay the redneck sailor man....
God bless our troops and bring them home soon and safe ....
God bless our vets ......... All gave some ... SOME GAVE ALL......
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Old 04-13-2010, 02:59 PM   #7
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Good advice as usual Seajay. The only thing I might add, while you have everything apart is to put a good coat of paint to accent all the hand made tracks.
BOB
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Old 04-13-2010, 03:23 PM   #8
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Seajay, last time I took that approach to "fixin somethin" I reached the point I didn't care if I fixed it or not; AND ran out of beer.
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Old 04-13-2010, 08:19 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ray,IN View Post
Seajay, last time I took that approach to "fixin somethin" I reached the point I didn't care if I fixed it or not; AND ran out of beer.
Ray, the only solution I can see to your situation as quoted is that you may need to ''work a little faster'' or ''drink a little slower''' of ''START WITH MORE BEER'' and get a gooooooood helper...........
This advise will cost you ten cents and you gotta pay me the next time you see me. OR,,,,,,,,, You let me know the next time you are gonna fix something, and buy a couple of six packs.....
Seajay the sailor man
God bless our troops and bring them home soon and safe
God bless our vets .... ALL GAVE SOME........ SOME GAVE ALL .....
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Old 04-14-2010, 08:00 AM   #10
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One more suggestion and the I will shut up (maybe) My steps are not ''automatic''. We have to push the button to retract them. they will automatically retract when you close the door but when we park we have to hit the switch to leave them ''OUT'' and if we forget to ''flip the switch'' the steps will stay out when we drive off. Since Willa will sometimes forget to ''FLIP THE SWITCH'' I have installed a 'fix' for that.
I put a cow bell on a piece of chain and hung it from the steps. I adjusted the cow bell chain so that if the steps were ''OUT" the bell would drag on the ground and make a 'tinkling'' sound and alert her. When the steps are properly stowed and retracted the cow bell is a few inches off the ground. By doing this it keeps Willa from looking silly when she leaves the steps out. By doing this it will also give people the opportunity to talk to you...
''Hay man, you got a cow bell on a chain attached to your steps man''
''Yeah, I know...... I did that so folks would talk to me and ask me why I got a cow bell on a chain hooked to my steps''
You would be amazed at the pretty girls I have met because of my ''cow bell'' on a chain attached to my steps. It also keeps us from driving off with the ''STEPS OUT'' and you ''Tinkling'' all over the ground...
Remember this .... Even if your steps are ''fully automatic'' it is going to fail to work properly someday and this will save your wife from lookin silly.......

Seajay the sailor man
God bless our troops and bring them home soon and safe
God bless our vets ........... ALL GAVE SOME ........ SOME GAVE ALL....
ps. I think we should start a ''COW BELL ON A CHAIN ON OUR STEPS GROUP''. We could have rallies and maybe a news letter and a ''T'' shirt and a ball cap with a ''cow bell on a chain on our steps'' logo and stuff like that .....
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