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Old 08-27-2015, 08:35 PM   #15
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On my previous coaches if I leveled up and one set of wheels was off the ground I would check the distance. Then I would retract the jacks and drive up on blocks for that wheel or set and re level. I usually would also add a similar amount of block material under that jack so the piston did not have to extend so far. I personally will never have suspension components swinging in the breeze. But that's just me. YMMV


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Old 08-27-2015, 09:38 PM   #16
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I have never understood the fear of having the front wheels off the ground. What difference does it make if they are off the ground, or on a pad...with only a few pounds of weight on them? When you drive up on a pad and then extend the jacks to level up, the front wheels may still be on the ground, but with almost no weight on them.

I have leveled our coach dozens of times on sites that were not level and ended up with the front wheels off the ground a few inches. No big deal.


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Old 08-28-2015, 05:33 AM   #17
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I level manually even if the wheel are off the ground. I go till the pump quits pumping. I also use the jacks to lift the wheel for maintaince. No problems in 15 years.
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Old 08-28-2015, 06:07 AM   #18
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My wife and I were discussing this and she said you'd think if it was not recommended to lift the wheels up off the ground that there would be warnings in bold print stating that. And if it is bad for the chassis, why have jacks that are capable of lifting the RV up that high in the first place? I do know that it does say when lubing the chassis to lift the RV up off the wheels to enable the grease to better lube the ball joints and the rest of the suspension when greasing the zerk fittings.
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Old 08-28-2015, 11:45 AM   #19
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You have to have jacks that are capable of lifting the MH because it wouldn't work otherwise. The jacks do not have a brain or computer that recognizes that the tires are off the ground. The weight the jacks are lifting is the same whether or not the wheels are off the ground. It may be safe to lube the fittings as it is for a short time, but I think, at least for me, it is not good to have all the weight of the MH relying on two jacks holding it while people are in it moving around. It is much safer and easier on the chassis to put blocks under the tires and then use a minimal amount of lift to level the MH. The blocks are much cheaper to buy than the leveling jacks should you bend or tweak one out of it's limits, get leaking or troubles retracting. To each his own, and I guess that's another reason we bought new as we know it's never been done with ours.
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Old 08-28-2015, 11:58 AM   #20
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I'll give you a simple analogy and after that I just can't help those who don't get it.

Everyday, when you walk, sit, kneel, your legs only bend to the rear at the knee. If you force them forward you can hyper extend your knee. Yes, you can push it a little until it starts to hurt. If you ever had your legs stretched out on a table and the grandkids climbed up on them, pretty soon your legs/knees start to ache from being pushed the wrong way (hyper extended). Suspensions, especially on gas coaches, do the same thing. They're not DESIGNED to be hung the wrong way.

Will you find a label that tells you not to.....probably not. Thankfully, there are still some things that they hope people see is not a good idea. I see guys with their front tires lifted 10" off the ground.....I look, shake my head, and hope they don't blow a hose that sends the coach crashing down, injuring someone.
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Old 08-28-2015, 12:53 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Dutch Star Don View Post
I'll give you a simple analogy and after that I just can't help those who don't get it.

I see guys with their front tires lifted 10" off the ground.....
And I wonder what it is like inside the coach when people are walking around and the only thing there is for stability are two little metal rods holding up thousands of pounds of coach. Really, it just is not that hard to comprehend if this is a good thing to do or not.
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Old 08-28-2015, 12:56 PM   #22
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I'll give you a simple analogy and after that I just can't help those who don't get it.

Everyday, when you walk, sit, kneel, your legs only bend to the rear at the knee. If you force them forward you can hyper extend your knee. Yes, you can push it a little until it starts to hurt. If you ever had your legs stretched out on a table and the grandkids climbed up on them, pretty soon your legs/knees start to ache from being pushed the wrong way (hyper extended). Suspensions, especially on gas coaches, do the same thing. They're not DESIGNED to be hung the wrong way.

Will you find a label that tells you not to.....probably not. Thankfully, there are still some things that they hope people see is not a good idea. I see guys with their front tires lifted 10" off the ground.....I look, shake my head, and hope they don't blow a hose that sends the coach crashing down, injuring someone.
Nicely said Don. You are most certainly correct in the fact that, in lots of cases, common sense IS out the window. If manufacturers PRINTED each and every possible precaution/what if/don't do this because/potential accident/potential damage/potential danger/injury could result/ etc. you'd have a set of encyclopedias with issued with each coach.

Owning and operating these rolling Kleenex boxes DOES require some common sense at least some of the time. Some folks simply cannot see or, simply ignore the potential damage in certain circumstances until it happens. Then, the blame it on "Poor design". Oh well, 'nough said. I do things the way I do because, if my actions result in damage or breakage, and I knew better to begin with, then I only have ME to blame and, I'M THE ONE WHO HAS TO FIX IT.
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Old 08-28-2015, 08:15 PM   #23
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I'd not usually brag about it in polite company, but I have had all three axles of the MC8 off the ground at 60mph when I hit a small bridge in outback Queensland that had a bigger hump than I thought. Similarly, I've hit one (and only ever one) of those Mexican topes in the Airstream at about the same speed and the front wheels definitely left the road - with a hell of a bang too. Same in the F350 with the camper on the back. People do it in cars all the time. Never gone out of my way to try and wreck the RVs and it is certainly not recommended for campers, but stuff happens. All of my axles are still firmly attached to the respective chasses and all the shocks are working and airbags are still holding air. Been to Alaska and some of the frost heaves sneak up on the most attentive drivers and I'll bet I'm not the only one..
Now if I can do that at 60 mph with no damage, how on earth is lifting the vehicle straight up at 0.001mph going to do any damage. We drive trucks, not London Baby Carriages.

As for jacks being flimsy bits of metal holding thousands and thousands of pounds high in the air, if they were that flimsy they wouldn't do the job and I would much rather be up on solid jacks than perched on a pile of plastic blocks.

The mechanicals are designed to withstand the huge dynamic loads produced by high-speed changes in attitude and direction plus the shock loadings imposed by road surfaces such as undulations, pavement steps and washboarding and yet some here are worried about a gentle straight up lift when stationary. Come on.

And to complete the picture, I'm not the slightest bit adverse to running the outside dually up on a ramp on the vehicle that doesn't have jacks. Static situation vs dynamic - no comparison.
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Old 08-28-2015, 09:07 PM   #24
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And I wonder what it is like inside the coach when people are walking around and the only thing there is for stability are two little metal rods holding up thousands of pounds of coach. Really, it just is not that hard to comprehend if this is a good thing to do or not.

Our coach is rock-solid stable when supported on the jacks. When NOT on the jacks, wind gusts will rock the coach to the point where it can become uncomfortable.

You're right...it isn't that hard to comprehend...THAT THE JACKS ARE DESIGNED TO LIFT THE COACH AND SUPPORT ALL ITS WEIGHT! What is so hard to understand about that?


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Old 08-29-2015, 10:12 AM   #25
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WOW All I can think of is just WOW
It amazes me just how clueless some people are about subjects like this and the strength of the related components we are talking about.

Let me say that I jack my coach up. if the front wheels are on the ground, fine, and if they are in the air, that's fine too. I'm 100% with Tony Lee, Rich n Linda, and everyone else on this side of the fence on jacking up the coach.

I do agree it's better to keep the rear tires on the ground because of the emergency brake and the stability that adds. If you lift one dual up, you don't have an emergency brake anymore (driveshaft emergency brake) so you can lift both if necessary.

Some people just get something in their head and swear that's the only way to do things with nothing to support their belief, and it isn't just this thread, there are others just as bad.

But if you believe you need all wheels touching something, that's fine, it really doesn't make any difference, go ahead and put some blocks down.
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Old 08-29-2015, 10:48 AM   #26
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Although to be fair, the vast majority of RVers don't have the technical knowledge or experience to know what advice is sound and what is the stuff of urban legends or what used to have some truth in it and which is now well and truly outdated.
On forums such as this where anyone can post anything they like under the cloak of anonymity how is it possible to tell what advice is sound and what is not. Best anyone can do is read all the responses and try and come up with a consensus and even that may not always work. For instance the consensus on this topic might turn out to be that it is harmful/dangerous/catastrophic to have any wheel off the ground, while logically it is obvious that there is no practical difference between a wheel 1/32" off the ground and one 1/32" away from being off the ground, it ends up being a matter of what people are more comfortable with and that is obviously going to be 4 wheels on the ground. That is a matter of aesthetics rather than engineering but just as valid a reasoning.
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Old 08-29-2015, 11:35 AM   #27
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If you have ever been next to a rig when a Jack failed it will stick with you. We were dry Camping in a field at a football game. This guy had his front wheels up about 3-4" off the ground and we were standing there talking to him offering to loan him some boards. Next thing there was a loud boom with a resulting wham of the rig when it dropped to the ground. Scared us all half to death and took a minute to figure out what happened. He had Atwood electric jacks on his. Non-functioning after that. Don't know what it cost him but I do know I will not lift mine off the ground on jacks only.
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Old 08-29-2015, 07:17 PM   #28
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Some of you guys like to put words in other peoples posts. I never once said I was fearful of lifting wheels off the ground. And you would have to be an idiot to not know these jacks are designed to lift thousands of pounds. I said I will get my coach as level as possible with all the tires on the ground and use the jacks to fine tune it. Any rig is going to be more stable with 4 tires on the ground and 4 jacks on the ground supporting it. If you think that extending your front jacks to the maximum length and lifting your front tires off the ground is going to be more stable than what I do then you are the ones that need some educating. And those that lift both rear wheels off the ground so you have no brakes, very clever. So my advise to those of you that do it this way is go for it, you know your rig and the rest of us chickens are clueless. It is amazing how some of these threads take a turn so far away from the original question.
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