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Old 01-12-2008, 03:59 AM   #1
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Well, after coming down from the far north through snow, ice and freezing temperatures, and not ever losing my cool or traction, who would ever believe the traction control was going to be needed in Daytona Beach?
I'm not talking about beach driving, this was in a campground. I pulled into the Daytona Beach Campground, in Daytona yesterday. While backing into a spot the front axle sunk about 8 to 10" in sand. To get out of the hole required the traction control to light up on the information bar along with a chimming. Out it drove, though it would have helped if I had unloaded the tag air, which I forgot to do.

Would I have been able to get out if it was not TC equipped? Probably not, but then at least I would have probably thought to lift the tag and try. As was I dug about 4" deep at the drive wheels. By the way, they moved me to a more solid floored campground space.

Well, today it is get out of Dodge and down to River Bend.

Peter
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Old 01-12-2008, 03:59 AM   #2
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Well, after coming down from the far north through snow, ice and freezing temperatures, and not ever losing my cool or traction, who would ever believe the traction control was going to be needed in Daytona Beach?
I'm not talking about beach driving, this was in a campground. I pulled into the Daytona Beach Campground, in Daytona yesterday. While backing into a spot the front axle sunk about 8 to 10" in sand. To get out of the hole required the traction control to light up on the information bar along with a chimming. Out it drove, though it would have helped if I had unloaded the tag air, which I forgot to do.

Would I have been able to get out if it was not TC equipped? Probably not, but then at least I would have probably thought to lift the tag and try. As was I dug about 4" deep at the drive wheels. By the way, they moved me to a more solid floored campground space.

Well, today it is get out of Dodge and down to River Bend.

Peter
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Old 01-12-2008, 06:07 AM   #3
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Peter: Say, thanks for this post regarding the ATC use at that Daytona Beach Campground. We just took possession of our new 08 Essex which does have the ATC toggle (left of driver) but I wasn't quite clear as to what kind of circumstance would warrant toggling the ATC 'on', nor exactly what the ATC accomplishes other than (if I have it right) if a drive wheel is spinning, ATC engages automatically...to..what?..transfer drive to non-spinning wheel???...and prevent spinning driver from spinning..er what? If ya find the time, might you explain it (gently) to this ignorant wanderer in mechanical land??? Thank you. Thanks a bunch!! Steve & Lynette
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Old 01-12-2008, 06:02 PM   #4
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Peter,

You were more fortunate than I was last year when I pulled into a campground lot just as you did. My front wheels buried in the "sugar sand" and I ended up with a $250 tow bill. After being extracted, the manager of the campground informed me that other rigs had also been mired up there before. It wasn't long until the next day when they improved the pad. It still didn't help recoup my tow bill, however.
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Old 01-12-2008, 06:33 PM   #5
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The last time I left precious Nappanee and got stranded in Kentucky overnight in a snow storm I actually needed the traction control to come down the mountain the next morning.... Between riding the rumble strip down the mountain and holding my hand on the ATC button I made it down the mountain...

Thanks to the truckers knocking on my door the next morning I was able to get out of Kentucky into VA before the rest of the snow socked us in....

Need I say never again?
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Old 01-12-2008, 09:45 PM   #6
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Ah come on rebelsbeach.... wheres your sense of adventure?

Spike
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Old 01-13-2008, 03:23 AM   #7
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Chickadee, The ATC is defaulted in the non-engaged mode. This prevents problems that may ocurr, say when turning tightly and the outside (outside of turn) tire is rotating quicker than that of the inside. To activate, merely press once (no holding the switch is required as Bob may have indicated, in fact that will probably not even activate it.) After it is pressed once you will see "Traction Control Activate", or something like that, displayed on your readout bar. This will then allow an automatic braking of a free spinning wheel when the other is stopped or near that.

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Old 01-14-2008, 03:22 AM   #8
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Peter,

Having looked into ATC from Spartan awhile back, I found out the following.

The ATC is always on but when you hit the button it actually allows more wheel speed to keep the tread from filling with mud or whatever you're stuck in. Chris at Spartan has tested it himself in the snow and ice around the factory.

What he was doing bajaing w/a coach in the snow I have no idea. Must be pretty slow around Spartan these days.

I know you were just at Spartan so maybe you have different information. Maybe a call to Chris.
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Old 01-14-2008, 04:30 AM   #9
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Scott, I would have to disagree with that. The traction control is not in active mode normally. It is possible that wheel slip may automatically engage it, but it is normally off. Try it. Push the button once while driving. The display will say "Traction Control Active" and will continue to flash this message every 5 seconds or so.
Secondly, do not spin the wheels at any fast rate. This practice may quickly blow the differential. No large vehicle rear end will put up with any high speed spinning of the tires and stopping.

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Old 01-14-2008, 04:33 AM   #10
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<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">It is possible that wheel slip may automatically engage it... </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

That is how I remember it working.... when the wheels slip I've always heard the "ding--ding" and seen the "Traction Control Active" light on the dash.
This happened in both Nappanee and in a campground in PA where I was camping with the iRV2 Pond Piggies on wet grass and mud.
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Old 01-14-2008, 03:42 PM   #11
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I realize I don't have this feature and maybe I don't fully understand what Peter is saying. But, I have done a lot of digging as I decide to change coaches or not. I spoke w/Spartan today while making a service appointiment in February. (Yes February, Bob) I summarized this thread and the responses for them. This is what I understood after a lengthy and patient (on Spartan's side) conversation.

As a precursor, after reading this I encourage you to call Spartan directly to confirm. I recommend speaking w/Chris McCord who seems to have a ton of information and passion about the chassis'. He really cares what we think as customers. He will also dig out any answers he doesn't know. Actually, Spartan in general cares.

The system does work automatically when there is wheel slip. If there is minor slippage of one wheel it will apply air to the brake on the side that is slipping to transfer torque to the wheel that isn't spinning. If both wheels spin it will reduce engine torque. That is where the switch comes in. If you get stuck in loose gravel, mud or snow both wheels will most likely spin which would activate reduced torque.

This can cause a build up of material in the tire grooves and hinder you form getting unstuck. So when you hit the ATC button it allows the tire speed to turn faster than the standard ATC would engage so you can get moving. The light will flash in this mode. Maybe this is what Peter and Bob and others are seeing/saw.

On fire trucks,(which Spartan makes a ton of) they label that switch mud and snow which really makes more sense. The system is always active watching for wheel spin. If there is an event the light will flash while the ATC is active. If you hit the ATC switch for mud and snow use the light will flash while this feature is active.

So if you're driving down the road and hit the ATC switch it will flash that it is activated but it won't do anything because there is no wheel slip while you're driving down the road.

Whew! I'm a bit in the middle here on a chassis I don't even own yet. However, I sure know some of the questions to ask other chassis makers before thinking of switching from Spartan (not likely). Please check it out w/Spartan.

My apologies if I'm wrong on this or don't understand the situation because I don't drive this chassis. It's just that Spartan seems to be quite strong at answering tech questions accurately.
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Old 01-14-2008, 05:02 PM   #12
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Hmmmmmm....., interesting Scott. But spinning the wheels when stuck with a heavy duty rear end is a good way to blow the differential. Additionally, it says "Traction Control Active" after one press of the switch, so how is it going to allow free spinning? I've gotta do some research on this when time permits. I will call Chris M., he is very knowledgible and hopefully explain what we are missing. You don't by chance have his e-mail address?

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Old 01-14-2008, 05:30 PM   #13
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For now I see the operation of the ATC to be as follows.

Default off. Will automatically engage upon wheel slip.
Push button on selection for such uses as that may require no slip, or limited slip rather than waiting to engage after already slipping.

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Old 01-15-2008, 04:37 AM   #14
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Chris McCord is correct. The ATC is always in armed mode for automatic operation upon sensing of drive wheel slip. Depressing the ATC button is a "Mud and Snow" type surface operation which will allow the drive wheels to slightly increase in spin speed. This is an option that apparently the K-2 and 3 come standard with.
Note: It is stated that this is for specific applications and should not be used continuously for more than 2 or 3 minutes or damage may result.

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