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Old 07-16-2009, 12:16 AM   #1
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Trailing Arms Cracked on Roadmaster

HR Ambasador 2004 38 foot Roadmaster chassis. Frame inspection completed at Kaiser Brake and Alignment today. They found a 3/8 inch crack in each trailing arm just above the shim between the axel and the arm. The tech said this is an on going problem with this 4 bag configuration. Monaco has a kit which is available with a stronger thicker walled arm and new "U" bolts.

Any info out there on this potentially catastrophic cracking problem??

Thanks, Ed
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Old 07-16-2009, 05:33 AM   #2
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Ed,
Do believe this was a NHTSA recall. Sounds serious enough to have an immediate discussion with the "new" Monaco about parts availability..
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Old 07-16-2009, 05:55 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edsalzer View Post
HR Ambasador 2004 38 foot Roadmaster chassis. Frame inspection completed at Kaiser Brake and Alignment today. They found a 3/8 inch crack in each trailing arm just above the shim between the axel and the arm. The tech said this is an on going problem with this 4 bag configuration. Monaco has a kit which is available with a stronger thicker walled arm and new "U" bolts.

Any info out there on this potentially catastrophic cracking problem??

Thanks, Ed
Ed,

This has been a problem and was part of a recall. The new Monaco LC will not honor any past recalls. They do have the part, but you may not want it. The Trailing Arms on my MH have not failed as of yet, but the recall had never been performed by the previous owner, so I decided to have it done on my own.

The replacement part that Monaco may still be using may also fail. It is my understanding that several of the arms provided by Monaco under the recall or as a warranty replacement have also failed after 10-15K miles. The company that did the original engineering for Monaco has a newer upgrade that is significantly more beefy. You may want to check with them to see if Monaco is shipping the latest revision or the older ones. I paid $1,099.00 for a pair, plus freight for mine. Here is their name, contact and phone numbers:

Scott Zimmer
Source Engineering
541-935-0308 or
541-915-1149
E-Mail info4rvadvisors@yahoo.com

It is my understanding that they have shipped approximately 8-12 of these over the past four weeks for down coaches due to failure and several were failures of parts previously replaced under the recall or warranty.

Hope this help.

Jim Stewart
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Old 07-16-2009, 04:12 PM   #4
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Thanks for the fast response, will make copies of the information provided by everyone and give it to the repair facility warranty manager when I get back to LA.

Once again THANK YOU

ED
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:01 PM   #5
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edsalzer or Jim Stewart,
Good evening, I have a keen interest in this since our coach is a 2004 Holiday Rambler Ambassador 38PDQ.
I'm a little confused about just what the trailing arms are and where exactly they are located. Can you explain a little more. Are they part of the framework underneath or part of the steering linkage and suspension? Appreciate the help.
Thanks, Letsgoagain
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Old 07-16-2009, 08:38 PM   #6
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Hello,

They are on either side in the rear. One side is bolted to the bottom of the rear air bag, the center is bolted to the rear axle with a large u-bolt and plates and the front is bolted to the frame. The cracks happen on the upper or lower portion of the center of the trailing arm where the u-bolt holds it to the axle. There is a flat plate with spacer welded to the bottom of the trailing arm. It is just toward the rear of that plate on the roundish part of the arm where it cracks.

The trailing arm allows the rear axle to move up and down using the air bag to cushion and limit the movement. A lot of stress is placed on the pivot point at the arm on the axle.

Hope this helps explain it.

I am old and stupid and can't figure out how to post pictures. E-mail me at Gatogonow@aol.com with your e-mail address and I will send you pictures of a broken arm that a great Guy sent me.

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Old 07-16-2009, 08:55 PM   #7
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Is there a year range that is effected?
Is there a production year when corrected with the stronger arm?
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Old 07-16-2009, 09:03 PM   #8
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Jim,
Thanks for the quick reply. Your explanation is very descriptive and well written. I appreciate the help.
Not sure what your definition of old is so I'm not going to put myself in that category yet but I do qualify for the stupid part very well and can relate about posting pictures.
I will email you as I would find the picture of one of the broken arms interesting. Hope I don't have to deal with that but as you said in your earlier post its best to be proactive sometimes.
Thanks again for your help.
Keith
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Old 07-16-2009, 09:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edsalzer View Post
Thanks for the fast response, will make copies of the information provided by everyone and give it to the repair facility warranty manager when I get back to LA.

Once again THANK YOU

ED
Ed,

I checked with Monaco LLC and they will not cover this under any past warranty or under the recall.

If you have a seperate service contract, do not tell them there was ever a recall. Many contracts exclude repairs that are covered by recalls, even if Monaco will not honor the recall.

Jim
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Old 07-16-2009, 09:22 PM   #10
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The proactive part is really fear. If they completely break at highway speed, they could do many thousands of dollars in damage to the suspension.
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Old 07-16-2009, 09:26 PM   #11
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"Is there a year range that is effected?
Is there a production year when corrected with the stronger arm?"

It is potentially on any coach that was made with an RR4R chassis. They were still sending out the "improved version" late last year but not the best version that has only been available for the past few months.

The version that they were sending out last year was the one used for the recall. It is my understanding that units replaced under recall are starting to fail at between 15 and 18K miles.

I see you have an 8 bag coach and it would not apply.
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Old 07-17-2009, 08:49 PM   #12
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To all concerned,

I will have the coach repaired in Southern California soon. It will have either one of the 2 kits which are made by a third party. After the repair is completed I will post with all the details. I have a good feeling this will be resolved safely.

Ed
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Old 07-18-2009, 09:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
I will send you pictures of a broken arm that a great Guy sent me.
Jim,
I sent you an e-mail requesting a copy of the picture
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Old 07-19-2009, 06:08 PM   #14
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Wow, this is crazy....sounds like a class action suit.....how can you allow a RR4R chassis on the road with a safety issue like this on the rear drive train...on dozens of coaches!..... this is so ghetto....just really retarded... street cred is really falling apart at the seams... tell me I'm dreaming!
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