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Old 09-01-2014, 04:21 PM   #1
"Formerly Diplomat Don"
 
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Making the Dutch Star Cab Quiet (er)

We've had our Dutch Star since January, but didn't really start putting some miles on it until May. The noise, air leaks and rattles in the front cab area made me crazy. I'm been chasing them through the last 6-7 trips. As many of you know, California has some of the worse roads in the U.S., so the coach takes a beating.

I thought I would share some of the things I've done, moving from the passenger side to the driver's side.

Front Door- The front door still doesn't close easily, but now closes tight with a good firm push/pull. Even with it closed well, I was getting a rattle and knocking like something was loose inside the door and banging around. I finally isolated the issue to the lock post on the door frame. Newmar made mine basically impossible to adjust. The "STAR" adjustment on my door requires pulling the entire door frame to access the adjuster.

I knew the post was part of the issue. I removed the post and the large washer. I took the soft white plastic lid off of a plastic storage bin and cut a washer out of the lid, the same size as the washer on the door post. I then cut a hole in the center of the plastic washer that fit over the post/stud. I installed the plastic washer between the metal washer and the door frame. It snugs up the floating door post, but is still moves around freely.

This got rid of a lot of noise at the door.

Power Door Awning- I discovered that my power door awning did not close squarely into the box/frame. I could shake the edge that extends and it rattled like crazy. It's now adjusted tight against the box.

MCD Shades- I found that moving the shade so that the guide that runs in the track (at the bottom edge of both the shade and visor) are close to each other, pinches them together and helps keep them quiet. The problem is that the shade only comes down a few inches, when the ignition is on, and it's hard to match up with the visor. Soooo...before I start the coach, I move the shade farther down, past the limit point, and then mate the two guides together to keep the noise down.

I also cut some small piece of dense foam 2" x 3" and forced them up beside the double roller frame at both ends of the MCD shade. It keeps it from moving from side to side.

All of the MCD shades in the cab that I use while driving, passenger and driver windows, I added foam weather stripping to the back side at the bottom bar to keep them from banging against the window frames.

Media Cabinet- I had the surround sound system, DirecTv box, Blue Ray player, and the Winegard antenna box all stacked on top of each other and velcroed downed. I found on large bumps, everything was jumping up and down. I strapped the surround sound to the floor, used heavy Velcro on the DirecTv box and Blue Ray player. I made a frame for the Winegard controller and mounted (screwed it to the roof).

Driver's Window- I know there is a listed repair for the wind noise at the driver's window, silicone along the bottom track, but my 2014 already had that repair and still made noise. I found on mine, that a LOT of wind noise was coming from the joint between the leading edge of the lower window and the upper window. As you sit in the driver's seat you can see a plastic track that starts down in the lower window frame and is snapped in, filling the track up to where the upper and lower window meet. I pulled that track out and siliconed the joint where the upper and lower window meet at the leading edge (closest to the windshield).

Driver's Mirror- Newmar installed my driver's mirror so that it was swung back and near the center of the driver's window glass. I could put my hand on the window and feel the pounding from the wind on the glass as I was driving. I swung that mirror forward.

This combination of repairs/fixes now has my coach going down the road much quieter than it did when new....especially that darn door!
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Old 09-01-2014, 04:39 PM   #2
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Don,

All good fixes!!

We pack our plates and silverware in cloth storage pockets from the container store with bubble wrap around other pots and pans. We also replaced the hard plastic bumpers on the overhead cabinet doors with felt ones, much quieter on a stretch of really bad road.
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Old 09-01-2014, 11:31 PM   #3
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I see we have another add to your Mod list, thanks for the info Don.
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Old 09-03-2014, 10:34 AM   #4
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The door noise on our trip to Oregon made me so crazy I was about to trade it in at the FMCA rally. The worse part is....I'm hard of hearing and still heard the noise!
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Old 09-04-2014, 08:41 PM   #5
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Good mods Don I'm taking notes. The wife and I went and looked at a DS4018 Saturday. Lol I had to be the grown up and pull her away.
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Old 09-04-2014, 09:27 PM   #6
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Don, have to agree with you on your California roads. What are you going with the State's budget?...Giving it all away on programs? I swear I found all the potholes in the Bay Area were in the same locations as when we lived there some 40 years ago.

Can't say we experienced much noise, though, likely due to these big ol' 365 tires on the front. At 110 #, they really do soak up a lot of bumps. Kudos to Newmar for this inclusion.
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:48 PM   #7
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Dutch Star Don, great write up, I will keep it in mind for our new coach. by the way, the MCD shades have separate programmable travel limits for ignition on and for ignition off. We have used our night shade on our previous coach as a very effective sun visor.
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Old 09-05-2014, 03:59 PM   #8
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I had to drive from Tucson to LA to pick up an old car some time ago. The interstate was in worse condition than the roads we travel in Mexico every winter. They were seriously dangerous.
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:02 PM   #9
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One more I forgot to add. I have the 46" TV on the televator, right behind the driver's seat. Every time we would hit a big bump, the countertop material used to cover the TV would jump up and slam down. I added door foam (3/8" strip) under the edges. Now it's quiet too!
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Old 09-05-2014, 10:39 PM   #10
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Boy them bumps in Calif. are deep.
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Old 09-06-2014, 08:01 PM   #11
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Don, I remember all the things you did on your Diplomat. I've always respected and shared your level of OCD (and you're the one who made me a die hard fanatic with Opti-Lube too.)

This is no exception. Rattles and squeaks drive me CRAZY and it seems like I'm always chasing them down. On my unit, the dash rubs against the windshield making a squeak over bumps - I need to find a better material to put between the two that will stay in place. I've done many of the same things as far as the door, shades, etc.

DW says "you're moving a house down the expressway, shut up and turn up the radio." She's never understood what makes me tick.
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Old 09-06-2014, 08:31 PM   #12
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LindyT, I had the same type squeaking noise between my dash and windshield rubber. In searching for a cure on my '07 DSDP I happened to extend my generator slide, get under the dash/window area, looked up, and found several large about 3" long wood screws barely hanging on under the dash area. (Just above where my ws wiper motor assy is mounted) I tightened all the screws and the squeak was gone. However, they still keep coming loose so when I get some squeaking back, I know it's time to retighten the screws. I have been unsuccessful so far in finding a way of locking then so they don't get loose again and again.
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Old 09-07-2014, 12:27 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lhill View Post
LindyT, I had the same type squeaking noise between my dash and windshield rubber. In searching for a cure on my '07 DSDP I happened to extend my generator slide, get under the dash/window area, looked up, and found several large about 3" long wood screws barely hanging on under the dash area. (Just above where my ws wiper motor assy is mounted) I tightened all the screws and the squeak was gone. However, they still keep coming loose so when I get some squeaking back, I know it's time to retighten the screws. I have been unsuccessful so far in finding a way of locking then so they don't get loose again and again.
Interesting! I appreciate the tip!
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Old 09-08-2014, 07:12 PM   #14
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WOW. I cant imagine roads worse than NY City area. I traveled from FL north to Long Island. I made the mistake of taking the Van Wyck Expwy south. Its under construction. I thought we would literally shake the RV apart till all that was left was the steering wheel and tires. We also just came back from CO and only developed one squeak and it was the screen door rubbing against the main door. Overall Im impressed in what abuse it took. Will see how next trip to TN goes.
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