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Old 03-30-2009, 02:24 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Los Angeles,CA, USA
Posts: 19
Back in the Saddle Again--Lots of Questions

Well I am finally back in the saddle again. San Fernando Valley, CA

Just got a 1997 Bounder 34V with single slide, jacks and a tag axle on a Ford Chassis with a 460 engine and no documents.

I have ordered the owners manual from Fleetwood
The last time I had RV's and was in the RV business (1975>>1985) Dodge 440's were state-of-the art.
Owned Class "A" 1971 Winnebago, 1976 Explorer, 1978 Pace Arrow. Lived aboard MH and TT several years.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

QUESTIONS:
TIRES
Rig has OEM (1996) Michelens on the Tag and 2004 Firestones on the steer and power axle.
I figure I need new tires and checking the Tire Threads on this board, opinions are all over the place.
I need 235/85r 16's and might put 20,000 miles on them.
What do I get??? Can I leave the best of the Firestones on the tag and just get six tires for steer and power??

RUBBER ROOF
I have seen plenty of threads on that. I figure to just wash and rinse it with dishwashing soap and a soft brush. What is the BEST WAY to reseal the seam at the front and rear caps?? How do you remove the old "goop" without damaging the rubber roof??

SLIDES AND JACKS
Any maintainance (change fluids, clean ram arms) or "If it is working, leave it be."??

CHASSIS MAINTAINANCE
Any favorite Ford Service in the Los Angeles Area and anyone to stay away from?? I figure to "lube, oil and filter" + fuel filter and air cleaner before I do any traveling.
Should I flush the fuel injector system and the transmission or leave them be?

TAG AXLE
It just has rubber and shocks (no air bags). How do I figure (and adjust) so the tag is carrying the proper amount of weight? I have not weighed the coach yet, but will as soon as possible.

HOUSE BATTERIES
Mine are dead. I figure to get Trojan 105's for around $120 each.
Any better deals and/or are Interstates better??

I have a 1993 copy of "Full Time RVing" by the Moeller's and a 2004 copy of "All the stuff you need to know about RVing" by Jones and Lowe.

Yes, I am going to sanitize the water system.

WHAT ELSE DO I NEED TO CHECK/KNOW????
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Old 03-31-2009, 01:12 PM   #2
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Some years back I had a 96 Southwind Ford F53 with tag, probably very similar to your Bounder.

Quote:
TIRES
Rig has OEM (1996) Michelens on the Tag and 2004 Firestones on the steer and power axle.
I figure I need new tires and checking the Tire Threads on this board, opinions are all over the place.
I need 235/85r 16's and might put 20,000 miles on them.
What do I get??? Can I leave the best of the Firestones on the tag and just get six tires for steer and power??
Michelin XRVs are fine, but so are Toyo, Bridgestone, etc. Just avoid the Chinese imports - too many of them are junk to take a chance on getting a good one.

I'd use the Firestsones on the tag for another 2 years and buy new for the other axles.

Quote:
RUBBER ROOF
I have seen plenty of threads on that. I figure to just wash and rinse it with dishwashing soap and a soft brush. What is the BEST WAY to reseal the seam at the front and rear caps?? How do you remove the old "goop" without damaging the rubber roof??
You can use a strong detergent without fear. I like Spic & Span for rubber roofs, but Simple Green etc are good too. Add some bleach as well to help cut the inevitable mold in the pores of the rubber. Wash the sides of the coach when finished to get off the crud you removed from the roof. Don't wait til the next day - do it immediately.

Quote:
SLIDES AND JACKS
Any maintainance (change fluids, clean ram arms) or "If it is working, leave it be."??
Wipe the ram arms (they are hydraulic?) with a rag dampened with ATF. If the level of the hydraulic fluid is OK, I'd leave it alone.

Quote:
CHASSIS MAINTAINANCE
Any favorite Ford Service in the Los Angeles Area and anyone to stay away from?? I figure to "lube, oil and filter" + fuel filter and air cleaner before I do any traveling.
Should I flush the fuel injector system and the transmission or leave them be?
You are probably due for a tranny fluid change unless records indicate it has already been done. Use synthetic STF.

Quote:
TAG AXLE
It just has rubber and shocks (no air bags). How do I figure (and adjust) so the tag is carrying the proper amount of weight? I have not weighed the coach yet, but will as soon as possible.
I don't think it is adjustable. It is probably a Mor-Ryde tag - you could call them and ask.

Quote:
HOUSE BATTERIES
Mine are dead. I figure to get Trojan 105's for around $120 each.
Any better deals and/or are Interstates better??
I'd go with the Trojans. Interstate U2200's are fine, too. Not better, but essentially equal.
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Old 03-31-2009, 10:21 PM   #3
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You'll need to make up your own mind on this issue, but I'd replace all the tires. I will not run any tire over 5 years old. Too much at risk and I've seen what they do when they blow. I had to repair the wheel well on my coach after the previous owner ran an 8 year old tire and it blew. Luckily, it didn't take an air line with it.
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Old 04-01-2009, 01:28 PM   #4
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Concerning re-caulking the rubber roof where it meets the caps? I would seal those seams with Eternabond tape. They have a website, just google the name or search the threads on this site. My two cents. Hope all works well!
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Old 04-02-2009, 08:34 PM   #5
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Another note on the roof, check/replace your A/C gasket or gaskets between the roof and A/C. I had a 1993 Gulfstream Conquest class C where the gasket leaked for several years (before I bought it). You guessed it, I got to buy a nice new roof!
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