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Old 07-04-2009, 09:29 AM   #1
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SFT Full Slide Operating Tips

I want to pass on some of our lessons learned over the past year and a half living with our full wall slide. We have learned it does require a bit of TLC and following some specific operating dos and don'ts.

First tip is to keep the front and rear hydraulic operating cylinders synchronized. Over a long period of time our got out of synch and the front of the slide would not consistently close and seal - it was not moving at the same time as the back by a small amount. I think this happened because we would release the close (and open) switch as soon as the slide stopped moving. Making a long story short, over time this misaligned the front and rear operating cylinders. If one looks at the end of the cylinder shafts you see that there is about two inches of "play" where the shaft moves before it pushes or pulls on the slide. If the two shafts do not pull or push on the slide at the same time the slide gets slightly cocked in the opening. This had happened to us. The fix is easy - hold down the operating switch and let the hydraulic pump run for about 15 seconds after the slide comes to a stop. This will move both of the hydraulic rams to the same position and re-synchronize them. This fixed our problem.

Here is a picture of the end of the operating shaft.

Attachment 789

You can check to see if you have a synch problem by watching the slide come in and see if the "pull" end of the hydraulic rams engage and start pulling the slide at the same time. When our rams were out of sync there was about an inch difference between front and back.

Another tip is to keep the three bottom support "bars" and their support rollers lubricated and clean and also keep the hydraulic shafts clean and lubricated with silicone spray. Our cylinder shafts had paint all over them that I cleaned off with some Goof Off. The rollers that support the three support bars also need to be lubricated and I used an old fashioned oil can with some motor oil to do that. There is a lot of weight being carried by those rollers so I was reluctant to use WD-40.

Here is a picture of the support roller in the overhead of the LP bay.

Attachment 790

Finally make sure all the fasteners on the mounting hardware remains tight. there are brackets at the end of the support bars that locate the slide and allow for some adjustment. One of the brackets had the adjusting screw locking nuts loose and it had moved about a half and inch. I readjusted to original position and tightened all hardware.

Here is a picture of the bracket...

Attachment 791



I hope this information is helpful to anyone will an SFT model and keeps you out of some of the problems we have experienced and solved with a bit of trial and error.

Lew
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Old 07-05-2009, 05:53 PM   #2
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Lew,

Very useful information for those of us with SFT floor plans. But could you please fix the links to the attachments. They got truncated somehow. Should look more like this...

{http://www.irv2.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=795&d=1246808113}

(all on the same line with no spaces, and without the {})

Example...
http://www.irv2.com/forums/attachmen...5&d=1246808113

or...

Attachment: Pix of Diplomat SFT

Thanks.
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Old 07-05-2009, 07:16 PM   #3
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Strange things happened with the pictures so here is another try:

The end of the hydraulic rams:

Click image for larger version

Name:	SFT-Shaft.jpg
Views:	238
Size:	32.6 KB
ID:	796

The support rod roller:

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_0558.jpg
Views:	155
Size:	49.1 KB
ID:	797

The end bracket:

Click image for larger version

Name:	IMG_0560.jpg
Views:	245
Size:	46.9 KB
ID:	798

Looks like it worked this time - hope this is helpful.

Lew
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Old 07-07-2009, 01:21 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LewF View Post
I want to pass on some of our lessons learned over the past year and a half living with our full wall slide.....

"The fix is easy - hold down the operating switch and let the hydraulic pump run for about 15 seconds after the slide comes to a stop. This will move both of the hydraulic rams to the same position and re-synchronize them. This fixed our problem."
Lew-- definitely timely and SUPER helpful tip!! We've been noticing our slide starting to mis-align on our current road trip on the west coast and was concerned enough to begin looking for a service/repair with someone just this morning.

The rear of our slide is closing hard and tight, with the front of the slide still protruding a 1/4" gap or so. The center is protruding about a 1/2" when closed which is creating what appears to be an ever so slight bow in the whole slide. When it is open fully, to seems perfectly straight. When closed, the slide seems to be so tight in the rear that it's crushing/buffing off the fiberglass trim underneath the slide facing.

You mentioned a 15 second pump run.....do you do that when running the slide outward at the end of the extension? Do you do this every time you actuate the slide or just to re-align?

Mark S.
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Old 07-07-2009, 03:16 PM   #5
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Your situation sounds very similar to ours before we solved the problem - the slide closed very tightly in the rear, was a little bowed in the middle and was as much as an inch open at the front.

Here is how we fixed our situation and how we changed the way we operate the slide. First the front and the back slide hydraulic shafts have to both be pushing out or pulling in at the SAME TIME. When ours was out of synch the back shaft would start pulling the slide in before the front and it allowed the slide to cock a little.

To fix it, first put your slide out and when it stops hold the switch for about 15 seconds and then check to see that both shafts are contacting and pushing on the slide brackets at front and back. Second put the slide in and hold the switch for about 15 seconds after it has stopped. This should have made sure the front and back shafts were in the same position or synchronized. I let the hydraulic pump and system cool down between the slide moves. After this I put the slide out (holding for 15 seconds at the end which is now a permanent operating change for us) and then we put the slide in while I watched to make sure the front and back shafts began pulling the slide in AT THE SAME TIME. They did, and we haven't had the problem since.

I think we caused the problem by releasing the operating switch too soon. We would release as soon as the slide was closed and over time I think this allowed the front operating shaft to fall behind the rear. In retrospect it is clear that my (our) problem was that the rear shafting was pulling the slide in by itself and dragging the front it with it but not seating the front completely.

I hope this helps. We love the room that this slide gives us but you do have to treat it with some TLC.

Lew
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Old 07-07-2009, 03:26 PM   #6
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To everyone, one thing I didn't make clear enough in retrospect is that the hydraulic operating shafts have about two inches of play at their ends. You can see this in this picture. It is this play that allows the shafts to get out of synch. I don't know why that two inch gap is there but HR Tech Support says it is needed and to not change it.

The end of the operating shaft:

Click image for larger version

Name:	SFT-Shaft.jpg
Views:	208
Size:	32.6 KB
ID:	802

Lew
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Old 07-07-2009, 05:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LewF View Post
To everyone, one thing I didn't make clear enough in retrospect is that the hydraulic operating shafts have about two inches of play at their ends. You can see this in this picture. It is this play that allows the shafts to get out of synch. I don't know why that two inch gap is there but HR Tech Support says it is needed and to not change it.
Huh, now that's a twist. My front slide ram, which is exposed and easily accessible, had only about 3/8" inch of play and I just assumed it loosened away from the double nut/plate face, so I tightened it up against the plate. Looks like I need to reconsider that move in light of your comments.

What does not make sense is that if you want exact, parallel movement when the rams start to extend or retract, you would think the starting point (either the double nut or the single nut on the shaft) would need to be the same distance for both the rear and front slide. And with a single nut on the end creating the 2" play without a locking nut to cinch it tight and not move, that would seem not be make a whole lot of sense-- but there must be more to the equation as you pointed out.

Also, I went to view the rear slide mechanism, which is under the king bed in the rear bedroom. In order to get to the end of the shaft and adjustment nuts, it appears I need to tear apart the bed platform to gain access. But at this point, I think I really need to do that to see exactly where that adjustment is at as well.

Finally, the good news of this day is that I previously thought there were 3 piston slides on the SFT...... but I now see there are only 2 (front and rear) with a slide support "bar" in the middle (w/no hydraulic ram), which should obviously make the alignment and syncing for 2 rams, as opposed to 3, a much easier task.
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Old 07-14-2009, 09:27 AM   #8
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I have to assume that the cylender has got to be at FULL extend and FULL retract so there is no more pressure exerted on the slide stops itself.....the distance of the play on the nuts may be different on all coaches depending on where the other end of the cylinder is mounted and the amount the slide comes out
Just an educated guess though
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