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Jim_HiTek 05-04-2012 03:28 PM

'94 Bounder with Parking Brake problem.
My rig isn't exactly a 'Vintage RV' yet, just two years to go, but I thought I'd post this here just in case someone with experience with a '94 Fleetwood Bounder, DP, might know something about my problem.

I am hoping someone might have run into this before and have an explanation of how the Parking Brake (PB) system operates.

This is a diesel pusher, and has a Bendix Spring Actuated parking brake system. The brake drum surrounds the drive shaft. The spring is retracted to release the brake when the engine is running (no engine, no brake operation), and the shift lever is moved to 'P'. This operates a hydraulic system that applies the brake, then you shut off the engine.

My problem seems to have been with this RV for a very long time. When I bought the rig in '04, I found I didn't have PB function and on inspection, found that the mechanical adjustment was set about 1" too loose so that the brake pads didn't contact the brake drum. So I adjusted it correctly and had PB for a while. Over the next several years I would occasionally notice that the PB lamp would flicker a little now and then. Even on smooth roads. Then the PB would try to apply while I was backing up. Finally, it started to come on solid (and apply the PB) while I was driving. If I'd throw it down into 3rd, the brake would release and I could go for miles no problem.

Finally, it got to the point that it was coming on most of the time while in 'D', '3' & sometimes '2'. That ruined the brake pads and scored the drum. When I had it worked on, the guys weren't really familiar with the system and did their best to figure out why it was coming on in 'D'. They thought they had it and rebuilt a hydraulic valve assembly. Also turned the drum and replaced the brake pads. It seemed to be OK.

All was well for around 100 miles. Then the 'PB' lamp started flickering again in 'D'. Too far away and short of time, I didn't take it back to the other shop so I'd like to see if I can get some advice on this forum.

I have Fleetwood & Freightliner (was Oshkosh) schematics but they aren't much help as to the LOCATION of whatever switch is causing the problem.

Anyone here have experience with this Bendix PB system? Note that this system doesn't use the 'Rotten Green Switch' so famous for failing in gas rigs. I talked to Old Used Bear (the expert on the PB in gas rigs) and he assured me my system doesn't use that.

Anyone know where I could get an operational schematic of the PB system? The one provided by Freightliner is useless.

4Knights 05-08-2012 09:01 PM

Have you called Brazels RV? They may know some info that will help.

Jim_HiTek 05-09-2012 03:46 PM


Originally Posted by 4Knights (Post 1170974)
Have you called Brazels RV? They may know some info that will help.

I find Brazels RV on google but it doesn't seem to be a chassis repair outfit. I gave up this morning and drove down to a local shop here in Flagstaff. They diagnosed it as a bad valve (same one 'refurbished' in Mexico in March) within 1/2 hour and are trying to find the part now.

Jim_HiTek 02-19-2015 11:39 AM

Update: Feb. 2015

I forgot to come back and post an update until now. Sorry.

The shop with my help found that the valve was bad. It's a TW-12 and apparently a common Bendix part. Cost for the valve (I ordered it myself online) plus a new pressure switch was $170. With labor, shipping, and tax, whole job came to $386 at Northern Arizona Diesel in Flagstaff, AZ. And yes, I highly recommend them. The work was performed in May of 2014.

One tricky aspect to this part was that the lever cam plate on the TW-12 as it comes from the factory isn't exactly right. The Oshkosh factory originally had a custom plate made. I'm very happy I had the shop keep the old valve while we waited on the new one to be delivered because if they'd thrown it away, we would have lost that custom plate. And no drawings.

BTW, Arizona Diesel told me that Freightliner was not very helpful at all, they just wanted my rig sent down to them (there's a FL shop in Flagstaff). Last time I got a quote from FL, they wanted an outrageous $2200 for just changing out my Master Brake Cylinder. No way. I did the job myself (I'm an amature mechanic) in 2.5 hours.

The tech installing the new valve climbed out from under and told me it didn't fit and that he'd have to order a new cable for $200-$300. Yikes. But the shop manager straightened him out after I objected. They removed the old actuator plate from the old valve, installed it on the new valve, and everything worked great.

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