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Old 11-23-2020, 08:21 AM   #1
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Suspension/Chassis Work Needed - Southwest of Denver

I have a 2006 National RV Tropical with a 2005 Freightliner XC chassis. I am not happy with the ride and handling. I am looking for a trustworthy shop on the southwest side of Denver that has experience working on this RV chassis. Here is what I have completed on my own so far:
- Installed Source Engineering Ride Enhancement package (Bilstein shocks, rear stabilizer, comfort control valves)
- Installed Safe-T-Plus stabilizer
- Installed new tires

I am still experiencing wandering and harsh ride. I would like a one-stop shop that could look at the height control adjustment, steering arms, perform alignment, etc. and make any repairs needed. I have used Transwest in Frederick, CO but they say my rig is older than 10 years and they will not work on it. Any help appreciated.
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Old 12-10-2020, 07:31 AM   #2
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Due to no replies to my post, I assume people in my area have the same problem finding a shop that can work on the Freightliner Chassis.
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Old 12-16-2020, 05:36 AM   #3
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I have been looking at the Source Engineering stuff for the same reason... did you get any help with their set up.... I also have the National RV.... I was thinking of making the trip to OR for their stuff....



I think the problem is in the steering gear box and play in the front end parts... even though my coach only has 75K miles... I was in the trade most of my life and knew one really good HD chassis guy who is now gone...



I wasn't happy with the alignment people I used in Spokane WA... they know alignment but know nothing of the mechanic's of the linkage...



My wander seems to be play or looseness in the parts.... with no side wind there is no problem but add some side wind and its much harder to keep tracking... I've also notices that on new, smooth highways its much easier... and the shallow wallows from the vehicle traffic when it starts to wear causes much more of a problem.... and to me this comes back to looseness in the front end... maybe undersized Idler Arm .... or the equivalent on a XC chassis...



I've wondered if the steering gear box is too small.... IN Whittier CA there is a rebuilder that does steering gears and when I visited them years ago they were doing a lot of work on crazy chassis stuff like cranes, fire trucks and ambulances to get them to run right.... BAB Steering... they always had a few in their shop upgrading the system because the body builder overloaded the front axle... and the chassis builder didn't install heavy enough stuff on the front end... and my XC chassis it right up there in weight... I'm now sitting at my winter home in AZ and hate CA.... won't go there.... but to date can't find a real front end guy, like the people at BAB Steering..... babsteering.com


Their parts were excellent, their service help was excellent and the owner was a nice guy.... their sales manager at the time I don't think new how to tell the truth about anything....
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Old 12-16-2020, 05:51 AM   #4
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I always went to a Freightliner shop for height check with both my DPs.
I would just go to Freightliner and have them check it all out.
Just be aware Freightliner charges much $$ for labor on motorhomes. It’s higher than other trucks. Last time I checked it was $190/hr. Also, they take a 20 minute coffee break every 20 minutes. Get it?
My last job there was to replace a leaking air bag valve in 2015. It was $500 labor, it has I think 3 bolts. The guy brought my MH onto the shop and disappeared for 20 minutes. Work a while and disappeared again for 20 min.
I just try to avoid going there as much as possible.
RV dealer repair shops seem to put more time next to the motorhome, but I guess it depends on the dealer. Still labor rates are high there too.
Maybe a truck rebuild or alignment shop might do you better.
I know a few shops like Brass Alignment in Williamsport, PA does great work on alignments and suspensions.
I would trust them with my life. They have very skilled people.
Most of the fracking companies here use them exclusively for their big truck work.

I,m surprised about Transwest refusing work. Sounds like they don’t have the skill set in their employees

Heck, your not far from the fracking in North Dakota, I would check the big truck alignment and suspension shops up there.
I bet they have skilled workers. Might be worth a phone call and a trip when the weather gets better.
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Old 12-22-2020, 02:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by biggerboat View Post
Due to no replies to my post, I assume people in my area have the same problem finding a shop that can work on the Freightliner Chassis.
I've had my coach for over a year, and Denver sucks for the one stop shop that will work on RV's. Its either too expensive or there is a month wait. So, I just stop in Alabama on my way to Orlando yearly and do my maintenance at someone that knows motorhomes.

If you are in a bind, you can use Stan's Auto in Loveland. 970-667-6853. They did some work for me last year. There is also a shop, out East on 70, Mountain States 303-261-4077, his name came to me from an ol timer trucker with a 2014 Phaeton, that says they do good work. (I have not tried them).

ALSO, for harsh driving maybe check your bell crank. I updated mine to the SS100 from super steer and had my sway bar bushings replaced too.

Good luck.

Pat
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Old 12-22-2020, 02:50 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2cyber71 View Post
I always went to a Freightliner shop for height check with both my DPs.
I would just go to Freightliner and have them check it all out.
Just be aware Freightliner charges much $$ for labor on motorhomes. It’s higher than other trucks. Last time I checked it was $190/hr. Also, they take a 20 minute coffee break every 20 minutes. Get it?
My last job there was to replace a leaking air bag valve in 2015. It was $500 labor, it has I think 3 bolts. The guy brought my MH onto the shop and disappeared for 20 minutes. Work a while and disappeared again for 20 min.
I just try to avoid going there as much as possible.
RV dealer repair shops seem to put more time next to the motorhome, but I guess it depends on the dealer. Still labor rates are high there too.
Maybe a truck rebuild or alignment shop might do you better.
I know a few shops like Brass Alignment in Williamsport, PA does great work on alignments and suspensions.
I would trust them with my life. They have very skilled people.
Most of the fracking companies here use them exclusively for their big truck work.

I'm surprised about Transwest refusing work. Sounds like they don’t have the skill set in their employees

Heck, your not far from the fracking in North Dakota, I would check the big truck alignment and suspension shops up there.
I bet they have skilled workers. Might be worth a phone call and a trip when the weather gets better.
The only Freightliner dealer in Denver is TransWest and they will not look at anything over 7 years old. I tried, several times. They sent me to Stan's Auto in Loveland.

I think that they are just too busy with all the DEF systems issues in newer trucks and are too busy for the older stuff. ( which should be easier, right?) It SUCKS because, any other Freightliner dealer would look at any age rig.

Transwest will take your money at the Parts department though...

pat
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