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Old 05-11-2015, 09:59 AM   #1
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Tiffin Owners Club
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Using the slides without the jacks down

Hey everyone. I have a 2008 Allegro 35QBA with 4 slides and the electric Atwood leveling jacks. This weekend we had one jack give us a power failure and another one break a sheer pin or something else internally, but the jack slides freely. We are working on getting this system either fixed or replaced.

My question is if I am level or somewhat level do I need to have the jacks down to use the slides? We were mostly level ~3.4% on our second night out and I was able use the slides out and back in with no issues. Am I asking for trouble or can I do it within reason?

I can tell that the jacks make the coach level and provide a stable base as the coach really bounces on the springs with no levels.

We have a trip we want to take Memorial day week and we are trying to figure out if we can still make it work without the jacks or if we need to cancel?

I may but some pads or block to help, but I need to get an idea as to how much off level is too much if any at all.

Thanks

Tom
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:10 AM   #2
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We have used the slides without the jacks, there doesn't appear to be any side effects. When we first got it we had problems with the jacks a couple of times and camped without them. Now when we are cleaning or working on it by the house we don't put the jacks down.

Maybe there will be someone here with a more technical answer for you.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:23 AM   #3
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No, you don't have to have the jacks down to use your slides. I do it that way all the time.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:36 AM   #4
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I would only extend the slides if the rig was "Somewhat level".
I don't think it needs to be perfectly level. get some 2x8 blocks (make them yourself) and drive the low wheel (or wheels) onto the blocks to get close enough to level.
There is also a concern about "chassis twist", like one front wheel in a hole. I think the twist is more dangerous (contributes to slide problems).

You jack problem is probably a broken shear pin. My son's 2006 Fleetwood has had these break. You can make your own, but they are slightly under 1/4" diameter (more like .215 inches). We make our own because we can't get them from the manufacturer.

Regards,

Dan
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:05 AM   #5
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During our 4 mo winter stay in FL keys we never lower the jacks due to the corrosion factor down there. Better to blow the air bags (if you have them) as it makes for a more stable platform and their going to leak down anyway.
Always put the slides out opposite each other, rather then all slides on same side.
Electric Jacks: usually moisture gets into the circuit board cover on and top shorts them out. We see several of them changed out in the keys each winter.
The preventive fix seems to be sealing the screw head holes in the cover with silicone sealant before they get wet.
There is one mobile repair guy that exchanges then for $1100 per jack and takes the bad one, repairs it and re-sells. RV friend feels he got his same jack back later in season...Lol.
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Old 05-11-2015, 10:26 PM   #6
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Thanks for all the replies. At what point of lean would you not put the slides out?
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Old 05-12-2015, 04:38 AM   #7
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Jack Problems

On a previous rig with some jack issues, I found that a couple of manual hydraulic bottle jacks from WalMart served very well as a temporary substitute. It makes sense to me that the coach should be at least within a couple of degrees of being level. I use the "Swiss Army Knife" app on my cell phone rather than the yellow lights.
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:01 AM   #8
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I also have used my slides at home and on the road without jacks down. The things I watch for is - don't like to have the unit out of level from side to side. Puts too much strain on the slide if you are pulling up a slope especially if the system is electric. If I must put a slide out in these conditions temporarily I generally only go partial so I can avoid having the strain going up as it starts to close and only if its not raining since the seals are not fully engaged. I also agree that twist is something to watch for so be careful if you use manual jacks on only one side you can create twist unknowingly.
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