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Old 12-19-2014, 07:57 PM   #1
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Need help asap on Dodge M500

To the point, bought a 75' Apollo 2600 BD yesterday, need to get it running, but if I can't, I want to drag it home (100 miles). I have a large tow dolly, but I do not know the tread(width) of the front wheels on a Dodge M500, CAN ANYONE GIVE ME A MEASUREMENT??? I'm also not looking forward towing a 12K LBS motorhome, behind my van, it has 4K LBS on the van. If I do tow it, my nerves will be shot by the time I pull into the ranch.
THANKS
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Old 12-19-2014, 09:04 PM   #2
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You would damage a tow dolly trying to put something that heavy on it, first off, second, the tires on a tow dolly are not rated for that kind of weight! Call a wrecker service, have it towed to your house. Do every one else on the highway a favor. I hope the rear tires are good enough shape to make the trip also! Check the pres. before your leave! Good Luck!
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Old 12-19-2014, 10:12 PM   #3
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Guardrail53, Good advice, and thank you! I said I was new in every way to motorhomes, not new to common sense, nor the mechanical world. The front axle on the MH is rated @ 4500 lbs, the dolly can handle 5K lbs, I will be driving 40 MPH. Not many other cost effective options, wreckers would cost almost as much as I paid for the RV. I could always put a tow bar on the front end and hope that it likes to follow a Ford. Not sure how much caster they throw on that size chassis, if it's not enough caster, it will not follow at all. Non of these are my first option, my first and best option is to put a carb on it, have it run, and drive it home, somewhat safely. In my past life as a heavy equipment mechanic, and other weird professions, I pulled off much bigger miracles, with no disasters. I'm still looking for options and still could use the width of the front wheels. Thanks, again!
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Old 12-20-2014, 02:51 PM   #4
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Gus,
My vote would be to rebuild the carburetor, throw on a new fuel filter and drive that awesome 440 home. Or if you want to stay clean in the process, go back with a rebuilt carb., install it and drive home.
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Old 12-20-2014, 06:56 PM   #5
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Does that use a ballast resistor?

My favorite cheat is a gas can with a hose. That way I know I'm getting the engine going with fresh gasoline.
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Old 12-20-2014, 06:59 PM   #6
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These often have a thermo isolator gasket in bottom of carb that dries out and leaks air resulting in lean no run.

Take carb off put some permatex aero form a gasket on it and you should be good to go.

Fuel line may be cracked and pump may be dried not wanting to prime.

We drove one home on a lawnmower can once...

Tires also may be shot.
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Old 12-20-2014, 09:32 PM   #7
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Sounds like your dolly is up for the job. At your stated 40 MPH, I would think it would be a minimum hassle job. I would personally like secondary roads rather than freeways.

I wonder if you need to disconnect the drive shaft.
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Old 12-20-2014, 10:46 PM   #8
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Ok, here is the update... So far 3 trips to the Apollo, first one to look at it, second to show to wife, and pay for it, and evaluate the issues, it was obvious the carb on that engine did not belong as it was a mid 1980's quadrajet and to boot it was plumbed way wrong, that is the understatement of the decade!!!! Don't ask don't tell... Next got an old carb from my buddy, did a few mods last night, and I figured it should run and kept it to the basics only, fuel in, mechanical secondaries only needed vac lines, basic set up, get home mode, new gaskets, blah, blah,,, Well drove up again with my buddy, and while I installed the carb he did an oil change, so far so good, turn on Holley fuel pump #1, and get half fuel and half air, so start looking at fuel lines, turns out to have 2 fuel pumps and a switch over valve, so I re-plumb the set up to bypass everything I do not need, so far so good, turn pump on and get half and half again, eliminate the mechanical pump from the system, still H&H, blow air into tank from the fuel line side, and it's obvious, we have a fuel line pick up leak, dry rotted fuel line(on the other side of the frame, the side I can not see or reach), so I cut fuel line off, take my air compressor fittings apart and remove the fuel tank drain plug off, screw in the air line fitting hook up fuel line to electric fuel pump, we have fuel to carb, it starts and runs, well sort of,, 1100 RPMS, is the best I can get out of it. Looking at the big picture (last time I worked on 1970's anything, I was teaching guys how to be mechanics, about 1989), I see the ignition harness had a little too much heat, like it melted, so I spent an hour of nice sunlight taking a melted harness apart, not too bad, only about a dozen wires, and the pick up ignition coil. So in the dark, my buddy says, time to call it quits, so I made a list of things I will need tomorrow, new pick up coil, 20 feet of wire, butt connectors, dig out my old books, a bottle of rum, try to remember what MOPAR was thinking back then, cursing that fat guy Lee Iacocca, and drive home a 100 miles without my new wheels! It is sad that I remember part #'s (I did own a auto parts store in the 1980's) so I check a few parts places on my way home, found one 20 miles away that had the pick up coil, I'll get in the morning. Right now I'm working on the Rum. So far 600 miles $1100, and 2.5 days. To make things interesting while I'm 100 miles away, working on a old Mopar, my neighbor calls me, asking what the hell is going on at my house, (keep in mind I live in the country, and my neighbour is over a half mile away), tells me the they can hear my wife yelling her brains out, so they go and check up on her, it turns out some of our boy dogs got into it, it was pretty ugly, by the time I got home, we had one boy with a gash on his face 4" long and still bleeding, the other male was better off but not by much, in the process 3 girls ganged up on another girl, so the wife and I spent the last few hours patching up dogs. So after all was done, I drove 200 miles worked on a mopar, cleaned my hands and played vet and put 14 stitches on my dogs face. I'm going to bed, and tomorrow I will pick up a pick up coil, and drive another 100 miles, pull the distributor off R&R the pick up coil, repair the wire harness and with any luck, baby it home another 100 miles.. OK guys how did I do?
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Old 12-21-2014, 09:33 PM   #9
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Sounds like a full day, for sure!! I have no doubt you will hear your baby roar tomorrow! Stupid dogs! Like you do not have enough on your plate? Enjoy the rum! Rail!
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Old 12-21-2014, 10:31 PM   #10
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If the Dodge is a bust, there is an inexpensive MH in the Springs. Late 80s Winnie Class A, 32', for less than $3k; located at Falcon Meadow Campground.
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Old 12-21-2014, 11:19 PM   #11
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Thanks guys! Really like the advice you all have offered, and I have taken it to heart! The reason I liked the Apollo was the flat glass, the heavy duty chassis, and the steel frame. I really would have preferred a Travco, but the windshield not being flat took it out of the running, the other one that I liked was the Sportscoach, I found one in Pueblo, but the guy did not answer his phone for 10 days, then I get a hold of him and tells me he just sold it an hour earlier, then I found one in Nevada, and they guy is a jerk, will not answer any questions. So I find this like new Apollo, with 93K miles on it, and the outside is dirty, but the inside is really like new. The price is fair, the engine has a few issues. Someone took the carb off of it, and the ignition/alternator harness is melted. I put a temporary carb on it, spliced all new wires on the burned up harness, put a new pick up coil in the distributor, re plumb the fuel supply, and now I still can not get it to run. So far I have driven over 800 miles back and forth to work on it, in windy freezing temperatures, taken my buddy along to drive my van home, and I'm still no closer to home with it. 429CV23 thanks for the heads up, but a Winnie will not cut it for what I'm planning to do with the RV. It's just been a long week!
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Old 12-22-2014, 12:06 PM   #12
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What is not working now?
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Old 12-22-2014, 01:01 PM   #13
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Well, yesterday spent all day cutting and spicing melted wires on the ignition/alternator harness, also replaced the pick up coil in the distributor, cleaned up the electrical mess that it was, now I can not get the electronic ignition to discharge. I have power like I should, but it seems like the reluctor is not breaking the circuit, ignition coil sparks as I kill the ignition switch. Even cleaned up the old pick up coil, and put it back in, no dice, I got .008 air gap between the reluctor and the pick up coil. All of this with the wind howling and 36* and a few snow flakes. Now I'm looking at bone yards for a new harness. Also I'm asking around for a big flat bed trailer, and bigger truck, to truck it home.
So it will not happen for a few days.
Thanks for caring, and wishing all the best of holidays!
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Old 12-22-2014, 01:26 PM   #14
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This might be a dumb question but have you changed the ign control module it takes the pulses from dist pick up and tells the coil to fire cylinders. The coil sparking when you cycle the key makes the module suspect. I can't remember what system that year used but I seem to think a Ford Duraspark was used then it has a 5x5 silver box usually mounted on a wheel well. Just taking a shot in the dark.
If you need specific info let me know as I have motor manuals that cover that truck chassis and I will dig them out.
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