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Old 05-28-2021, 10:13 PM   #1
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Broken welds and broken rollers

Hello friends! Well the hits keep rolling in! Hereís the back story:

Last fall, I had a local mechanic check out the underside of our new-to-us Ď05 Signature. He found cracks in the welds at the top of the vertical supports for the right and left side drive axle trailing arms (see pics).

I posted the issue with the pics and learned that the cracked welds were a common problem with the Roadmaster chassis. Many folks responded saying the correct fix was to use gusset plates to reinforce the new weld. So, I told that to my mechanic who assured me that was not necessary and that his welds ďwould last foreverĒ. Ok, make it happen.

Fast forward to last Saturday. My wife and I are driving from NC to Brooksville FL, to have slide toppers and Guardian Plates installed at Chris T Talinís Talin RV. Four miles from Talin RV, we get flagged down by a motorist (never a good thing), shouting that we are dragging something and throwing sparks!

I pull over and find the whole PS trailing arm laying on the pavement (see pics)! Further examination revealed that my mechanicís weld failed, which caused the diagonal support weld to fail, which caused it all to fall onto the spinning driveshaft and rest there until the trailing arm bent and the whole assembly fell to the pavement.

I was able to raise the assembly a couple of inches off the ground and secure it with coat hanger wire long enough to get us limping along to Talinís.

Oh...two days before we left on our trip, I joined Coach-Net.

Once at Talinís, I spoke to Chris about what happened and he suggested I have the coach towed an hour and a half to Orlando, to have Josam Truck Frame & Alignment work on our rig. I subsequently learned Josam is regarded as the best Roadmaster shop on the east coast.

I then called Josam who said theyíd be glad to help but not until their first opening on 6/8!

I then called Coach-Net, explained the situation and they agreed, without hesitation, to arrange a low-boy transport of our rig to Orlando on 6/7. Wow, now thatís pretty impressive! Weíll see how that goes.

So, the folks at Talin did an awesome job on our rig this week and now that their work is complete, Iíll be limping our rig to a nearby campground this weekend where Iíll stay until the 7th. My wife will be driving a rental car back to NC tomorrow because she has to be back at work. While the rig is at Josamís Iíll be staying at a hotel.

Iíve already made my mechanic back home aware of what happened. Iíll be presenting him a handful of bills when I get home.

Pretty crazy right? Oh wait...thereís more!

For months Iíd been hearing a series of popping sounds when retracting our DS kitchen slide so I asked the folks at Talin to check that out while we were there. What they found was that three rollers on the chain drive that moves the slide, are broken completely off (see pics), causing metal on metal contact and creating a risk of the slide getting jammed and locked in the out position! Holy cow!

Iíve since learned that the rollers canít be replaced but instead the whole chain drive must be replaced. Iím currently awaiting a reply from HWH as to the cost of the chain and how soon it can be shipped. My guess is this will be another very expensive repair!

So, here I am, stuck in Florida for the next week and a half or so, with nothing but an eBike or Uber to get around (we havenít set up a tow vehicle yet)...and my pockets about to be turned inside out.

It looks like weíll be eating beans and crackers for a while.

Lol. Somebody please tell me it will get better!
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Old 05-29-2021, 06:46 AM   #2
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Wow that's a lot to deal with. It does sound like you have a plan that will work. Soon you'll just be dealing with the normal problems that come up from time to time.

We had Dustin and crew put Guardian plates on in early May. We had them do all four slides.
I have the Monaco play in my steering and although I'm pretty used to it now I might consider letting Josam take care of it next season while in Florida.

Hang in there I'm sure it will be worth it.
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Old 05-29-2021, 07:51 AM   #3
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Seems as if he was no welder and probably didn't grind out and bevel the cracks at all and made other various welding mistakes. Gussets would have transferred the stress from original failure. That would have been better ,if both supports didn't land on same plane creating shear force at same location.
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Old 05-29-2021, 08:18 AM   #4
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But in partial defense of the welder, even a full-penetration groove weld, which that is not, will fail if the joint design is inadequate. Such a weld can’t be any stronger than the base metal.

Since it’s a common problem on this suspension, I would approach it as an inadequate or marginal design, not limited to the weld joint prep and execution. And the manufacturer had specific knowledge of the material used, and presumably had a fully vetted weld procedure for it (wire size and type, current, feed speed, pre- and/or post-heat, etc.), which is as good as it gets. Someone doing a repair is at a disadvantage. OK, maybe not such a good partial defense.
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Old 05-29-2021, 08:38 AM   #5
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Wow, I feel your pain. It will be in very good hands at Josam's. On another Monaco forum a member with an 05 or 06 Exec had the same cracks and had them repaired with gussets at Josam's. I have the same S series chassis on our coach, so soon after reading about the cracks went over to Josam's to evaluate whether I had the same issue. Turned out that somewhere in that time frame leading up to when my 07 coach was built Monaco installed gussets, and luckily I had no sign of any cracks.
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Old 05-29-2021, 11:34 AM   #6
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Thank you! We’re hanging tough!
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Old 05-29-2021, 11:36 AM   #7
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I agree...although he went on about his vast welding experience.
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Old 05-29-2021, 11:38 AM   #8
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Lol...thanks for trying!
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Old 05-29-2021, 11:39 AM   #9
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Thanks Bill, I’m encouraged that Josam will fix it right!
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Old 05-29-2021, 11:43 AM   #10
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The fact that you told the mechanic to use gussets and he did not may help in your getting back something. if he's an honorable person. He should have realized reinforcement is needed with a break like that, especially after you asked him to install gussets.

Good luck getting everything fixed. Thankfully no one was injured and you're safe.
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Old 05-29-2021, 02:36 PM   #11
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Thanks for posting but feel your pain.



I know that other models of Monaco has had similar problems with frame and or axle weldment cracking. That is why when I'm servicing my coach I take the time to do a thorough inspection. Last week I had tires installed and while I had good access I took a flashlight and inspected everything I could safely get to. I even took pictures where my head couldn't get to.

Hopefully your post will prompt others to take a good look. It would be much easier to fix a crack just starting then what has happen to you.
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Old 05-29-2021, 04:05 PM   #12
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Wow
I hope I never have anything even close to this happen.
All good replays. I've done a fair bit of welding myself. Along with others I agree gussets would always be a good idea to add strength. There's a lot more to it than just that too. You have to know more about what specific material you're welding for it to be a permanent fix. This tells a welder what type of equipment to use to properly effect the repair as well. MIG, TIG....etc.
I actually drive by Josam's every Thursday on my work route and it's good to hear something about their reputation.
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Old 05-29-2021, 04:25 PM   #13
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What are “Guardian Plates”

Ive had a ton of issues too.

Fuel leaks every year except this one (4 years straight I had fuel leaks. Replaced lines, lift pump, injector pump etc...and lines would come loose) - CUMMINS WAS SH*T BTW - Total crap service from them

Microwave replacement
Wate4 heater replacement
Water pump (engine & coach)
Fantastic fan died
Water pipes in slide separating
Toilet replacement
Windshield replacement
Kitchen fawcet & sink caulking replacement
Slide motor replaced (just last week)
I had a backing accident and tore up passenger rear corner
Generator stops running wheneve4 it wants (no codes, just shuts down) - still gotta figure that out
Main awning fabric & motor replacement
Samsung TV died
Slide needs adjusting as carpet is showing roller imprints
Furnace fan motor replacement
New tires

My rig is old - so I fix what I can and pay others to fix what I cant

Does it get better? No idea, but I am learning how to fix things ��

Still love my rig
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Old 05-29-2021, 04:28 PM   #14
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Thank you Rick, yes we are all safe and that’s most important!
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