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bigben 11-06-2016 12:20 PM

More than glad to contribute in an effort to pay it forward.

ctpres 11-06-2016 05:32 PM

Big slide cable remove/replace
 
Big slide cable on our KT broke due to improper installation of previously damaged cable. Bal Accu-slide cable remove and replace tools and my tips.
1. Nicopress Swage-it #3 Not easy to find but worth the search if trying to save $
2. Cable - wire rope cutter I used $10 electronic crimping tool with small screw cutter. Yes it cut 5/32 stainless wire rope all the way except for a very few strands that were easy to cut with side cutter.
3. BAL 22305 repair kit Amazon Prime $20.35. If you don't have one buy it as spare. Part seldom stocked and you could be sitting still somewhere waiting.
4. 3/8 in ratchet combination wrench
Plus a couple more easy to find/borrow.

Do NOT remove broken cable - doing so will result in a couple extra hours of frustrating work. Old cable hooks to new with special sleeve and some electrical tape. Just pull new in when pulling old out.
Remove wood trim along ceiling with thin putty knife and re-install when done with screws.
Cut new cable a bit long - just in case.
Follow printed kit instruction and watch a couple youtude videos on bal accu-slide.
I think factory instructions and videos are pretty good until it is time to adjust cable tension. Hopefully all of yours were adjusted right and you will only need to adjust the new cable.
Factory says to thread adjusting nut 1/2 inch on eye bolt to determine cable length. I opted for a bit less than 1/4 inch. Gave me more adjusting range. Before cutting I put a couple wraps of electrical tape around cable at point of contact with eye bolt. That helped me be sure I was not cutting it to short.
Look at all cable carriers before you start adjustment. If any of the carriers are much off vertical something else needs adjusting. Two of mine were approaching 45 degrees. Pretty sure due to previous bad service - not Thor. I found tension critical. For example with slide fully out the exposed outside cables should ALL have 1/2 inch up !/2 inch down or about one inch total travel in the middle under moderate pressure. Same thing with cables exposed inside when slide is all the way in. Four pull it out and four pull it in.
Think about one long cable attached inside and outside on each end. One end on top inside and the other on top outside - the chain and motor is in the middle. Say top outside cable VERY tight. When slide closes that corner will close against stop first/early. If corresponding end bottom corner is very loose it may not ever fully close. It's all a mater of balance.
When done be sure foam blocks are on all EIGHT cable adjusting nuts, cable carrier adjust lock nuts are tight and rubber grommets are installed at all eight cable ends.
I HIGHLY recommend you frequently check cable tension with slide in and out. I have a couple poles for washing and cleaning windshield. I fashioned a hook on the handle end of one so all I have to do is grab the top outside cables with the hook to check tension from the ground. No ladder or roof climbing necessary.
Questions? ask quick before I forget.

sbleiweiss 11-07-2016 08:02 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ctpres (Post 3326369)
Big slide cable on our KT broke due to improper installation of previously damaged cable. Bal Accu-slide cable remove and replace tools and my tips.
1. Nicopress Swage-it #3 Not easy to find but worth the search if trying to save $
2. Cable - wire rope cutter I used $10 electronic crimping tool with small screw cutter. Yes it cut 5/32 stainless wire rope all the way except for a very few strands that were easy to cut with side cutter.
3. BAL 22305 repair kit Amazon Prime $20.35. If you don't have one buy it as spare. Part seldom stocked and you could be sitting still somewhere waiting.
4. 3/8 in ratchet combination wrench
Plus a couple more easy to find/borrow.

Do NOT remove broken cable - doing so will result in a couple extra hours of frustrating work. Old cable hooks to new with special sleeve and some electrical tape. Just pull new in when pulling old out.
Remove wood trim along ceiling with thin putty knife and re-install when done with screws.
Cut new cable a bit long - just in case.
Follow printed kit instruction and watch a couple youtude videos on bal accu-slide.
I think factory instructions and videos are pretty good until it is time to adjust cable tension. Hopefully all of yours were adjusted right and you will only need to adjust the new cable.
Factory says to thread adjusting nut 1/2 inch on eye bolt to determine cable length. I opted for a bit less than 1/4 inch. Gave me more adjusting range. Before cutting I put a couple wraps of electrical tape around cable at point of contact with eye bolt. That helped me be sure I was not cutting it to short.
Look at all cable carriers before you start adjustment. If any of the carriers are much off vertical something else needs adjusting. Two of mine were approaching 45 degrees. Pretty sure due to previous bad service - not Thor. I found tension critical. For example with slide fully out the exposed outside cables should ALL have 1/2 inch up !/2 inch down or about one inch total travel in the middle under moderate pressure. Same thing with cables exposed inside when slide is all the way in. Four pull it out and four pull it in.
Think about one long cable attached inside and outside on each end. One end on top inside and the other on top outside - the chain and motor is in the middle. Say top outside cable VERY tight. When slide closes that corner will close against stop first/early. If corresponding end bottom corner is very loose it may not ever fully close. It's all a mater of balance.
When done be sure foam blocks are on all EIGHT cable adjusting nuts, cable carrier adjust lock nuts are tight and rubber grommets are installed at all eight cable ends.
I HIGHLY recommend you frequently check cable tension with slide in and out. I have a couple poles for washing and cleaning windshield. I fashioned a hook on the handle end of one so all I have to do is grab the top outside cables with the hook to check tension from the ground. No ladder or roof climbing necessary.
Questions? ask quick before I forget.

Thanks. Very helpful, although I don't think I would tackle this project myself. I suspect many a mobile tech would benefit from your description too.

LyonsL 11-08-2016 11:50 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ctpres (Post 3326369)
Big slide cable on our KT broke due to improper installation of previously damaged cable. Bal Accu-slide cable remove and replace tools and my tips.
.....
Questions? ask quick before I forget.

Chuck, just curious, did the cable fray before it broke?

I had to adjust the cable tension on the large slide of my coach after the factory service center worked on the cable system (because they had one cable way too tight) but fortunately I haven't had any problems since then (about 14,000 miles ago).

ctpres 11-08-2016 04:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LyonsL (Post 3328812)
Chuck, just curious, did the cable fray before it broke?

I had to adjust the cable tension on the large slide of my coach after the factory service center worked on the cable system (because they had one cable way too tight) but fortunately I haven't had any problems since then (about 14,000 miles ago).

It broke at the outside aft bottom termination cap, hard to tell for sure but I think it was failure of the termination crimp as some of the strands came out of the end cap. I did not check cable tension after last service. Quite convinced now that frequent visual inspection and tension checks are necessary. Takes me less than two minutes now with my "hook on the end of pole." Not 100% sure why but it seems re-adjustment is a good idea after service - especially cable replacement. Glad I put wood trim back on with screws. Now I will not be reluctant to work on it next time.

daverubino 11-09-2016 04:55 AM

I've had all kinds of trouble with my big KT slide. Adjusting nut came off once when bringing it home. Yesterday at the shop, they discovered the rollers came off their mounts. With the slide out, lift up the carpet and you'll see the rollers. They can shift back and forth and come off on one side. We bent the tabs in a little to keep them better. Our trouble was just after the pantry and the other end in the bedroom. Easy to check. Learning something new every day with these things! Oh, btw, this all stemmed from the post above from ctpres. I read about the 1" deflection on the cables. They had the slide out working on something else and I tried the cables and they had 4" on all four! I made them take it apart, which at first they were reluctant, but then got into it and untwisted cables, adjusted and found the rollers! Thanks so much! I would have never know if not for that post. I love this forum!!! :thumb:

LyonsL 11-09-2016 11:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ctpres (Post 3329103)
It broke at the outside aft bottom termination cap, hard to tell for sure but I think it was failure of the termination crimp as some of the strands came out of the end cap. I did not check cable tension after last service. Quite convinced now that frequent visual inspection and tension checks are necessary. Takes me less than two minutes now with my "hook on the end of pole." Not 100% sure why but it seems re-adjustment is a good idea after service - especially cable replacement. Glad I put wood trim back on with screws. Now I will not be reluctant to work on it next time.

My initial cable failure was exactly the same. Unfortunately I had no choice and had to do the repair myself but that turned into a learning experience about the entire system and how it works.

For my cable failure, I found that the cable end near the exterior bracket was rubbing against the interior metal framing for the slide, while the slide was in and I was driving down the road. The factory drilled holes through the frame to exit the cables and attach them to the exterior brackets. The hole for the failed cable was not aligned properly and I had to ream it out and make it larger so the cable would stop rubbing. That was the ultimate fix that solved my problem.

I also agree that the cable tension is crucial and I check mine frequently.

LyonsL 11-09-2016 11:54 AM

Cummins Onan RV QG 5500 Genset Failure
 
I know why Thor called the motor coach the Challenger... because it's a constant challenge just keeping everything working all of the time.

I start the generator every month and put a load on it to exercise it as the factory recommends. A few weeks ago I started the generator and noticed that while it was running, the light on the start / stop switch was flashing and the generator was not producing power. I checked the manual and found that the generator was showing a "Code 27" fault, not a good thing. Keep in mind that the coach is only 27 months old and the generator only had about 25 hours on it.

I made an appointment with a local Cummins Dealer / Repair shop and had the generator checked. Bad news!!! The stator in the generator shorted out and took the rotor and control module with it. The good news, the generator was still under Cummins warranty (2 years everything, 3rd year all major parts). To repair the generator, it must be removed from the coach, torn down and rebuilt. Not something I want to tackle, considering it weighs about 450 lbs.

Anyway, it took them about a week to receive the parts and repair the generator which was not a big deal to us because we are not full timers. The total cost for parts and labor, $2,965.90, which fortunately was completely covered by the Cummins factory warranty.

I do have an extended warranty on the coach that would have covered most of the repair cost if the factory warranty was expired. Thankfully I did not have to use it this time!

ctpres 11-09-2016 05:59 PM

Bal acu-slide service notes
 
More stuff to check - especially after service - in addition to cable tension testing inside and outside. Can only be done with wood trim removed. There must be foam blocks over all eight of the cable adjusting nuts. Lock nut on chain end of cable housing (four of them) must be tight against the cable housing NOT chain end. If cable was replaced does the aluminum ferrule crimp look nice, clean and uniform with THREE crimps. The U bolt type of cable clamp should never be used in place of or in addition to the crimped ferrule. The threaded ends can get hooked in the other chain and cause more problems or damage. That happened in my case. CW tech did not have proper crimping tool. Looks like he used electronic connector tool. It did not hold so he added the U bolt cable clamp - which eventually caused more problems. In my opinion the Bal acu-slide is a simple and user serviceable system. With proper installation and adjustment, followed up with routine inspections, it should be trouble free.

marcdohc 11-17-2016 12:42 PM

The Perfect name!
 
Man, I never connected the name Challenger to what its like owning it. Your absolutely right, The perfect name.
Anyway some might remember I logged in a ways back regarding many problems with my 16 Kt. Things got so bad that Thor decided to send a driver to Massachusetts to bring her back to Indiana. They worked on it for about a month fixing the issues such as driving down the road crooked, making it so the windshield wipers didn't get tangled up with each other, having AC in the dash, bad shock, hydraulic levelers coming on by themselves while driving and 6 or 7 more things that thankfully are no longer at the tip of my tongue. At first they refused to pay for our expenses to pick her up but after countless calls, emails and tantrums they finally agreed to fly us out there and have a car pick us up at the airport. When we arrived at Thor they treated us with open arms, top notch. Almost like I was a big wig. Unfortunately 1/2 the repairs were not done to my or Mrs D's satisfaction. They put us up in a local hotel, got us a rental car and went to re fixing the issues. It took 3 more nights before we were on our way back to Mass. It still isn't perfect but its close enough. Like I said, I had to kick, scream and demand over and over again. I even got my dealer involved, who is a huge Thor dealer which I think played a huge roll in them finally treating me as they did. In the end it took way more time and energy than I ever thought it would. Not loving my KT but finally liking it, Marcdohc

Rustynail462 11-18-2016 06:46 AM

Wow, really....thank you for sharing this with us. My wife and I plan in the near future to buy a new Motor Home and originally Thor was on the top of our list. However, after months of reading and studying that has changed. We thought thor had what we wanted and in a good price range,we looked at others such as Newmar & Tiffin. Heard about entry level etc.,and now it seems the old saying " You Get What You Pay For "apply's here.
We live in the "Dead Center" Canada, no where near a major dealer so when we do buy, and sure don't want a Ghost or Lemon like the above.

We likely, when ready will be looking close at a Tiffin, realizing there is no perfect MH it appears Thor is entry level with lots of issues.

Thank you for sharing your story, we sure couldn't live with this...

daverubino 11-18-2016 08:50 AM

Marcdohc, I'm sorry to hear about the extent of your problems. At the moment, our coach is pretty much ok. We're waiting on a new fireplace which shorted out and started smoking. (I don't think that was part of the fireplace effect!) Since we picked it up in May, it's spent way more time at dealers than it has in our driveway. When we picked it up in Tampa, they had a Thor guy come because we had so many problems. When we got as far as Mrytle Beach, we were so pissed off, we left it at a dealer there to hopefully fix everything. We rented a car and drove back to CT. Two weeks later we went down to pick it up. On the way back that night, the big slide broke. All this deeply concerns us because we're going full time in it Jan. 3rd. What am I going to do then when my "home" breaks? We have a friend that we actually met on the ride home from Mrytle that has a Tiffin Phaeton. He spent $100K more than we did and the build quality definitely shows. They've had problems too, but not to this magnitude. Well have to see how it goes. Hopefully I won't have to cut my loses and have to buy something better or my wife gets fed up and decides to go back to a house! This has been my dream, not hers. She's being a good wife and trying to follow my dream, but she'll only take so much! We plan to basically snow-bird Cape Cod to Florida. Who are you using in MA? Maybe if you're near the Cape during season, we can meet up. We can share horror stories over a beer! I wish you all the luck! :sad:

LyonsL 11-19-2016 12:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rustynail462 (Post 3340360)
Wow, really....thank you for sharing this with us. My wife and I plan in the near future to buy a new Motor Home and originally Thor was on the top of our list. However, after months of reading and studying that has changed. We thought thor had what we wanted and in a good price range,we looked at others such as Newmar & Tiffin. Heard about entry level etc.,and now it seems the old saying " You Get What You Pay For "apply's here.
We live in the "Dead Center" Canada, no where near a major dealer so when we do buy, and sure don't want a Ghost or Lemon like the above.

We likely, when ready will be looking close at a Tiffin, realizing there is no perfect MH it appears Thor is entry level with lots of issues.

Thank you for sharing your story, we sure couldn't live with this...

Although we've had some issues with our Thor Challenger, we have many RV friends that own Newmars, Tiffins, Fleetwoods, etc. and they all have had problems. A close friend owns a Fleetwood Excursion that was in the shop for 10 months out of the first 12 that he owned it. Most RVs are built with the same components from a handful of suppliers and it's usually the components that go bad. Don't believe that "you get what you pay for" in the RV world, because you never will.

Expect problems as time goes on, learn to repair and maintain as much as you can yourself and your RV will spend less time in the shop and you will spend more time on the road.

After owning several new RVs, my advice to all, buy the floorplan that suits you the best, buy what you can afford, hit the road and enjoy the RV life!

Rascal55 11-20-2016 03:04 PM

I'm really sorry to hear about the various difficulties people are having especially when RV's are tied up for months awaiting repairs. We have a 2013 KT and (knock on wood) have not had any really costly or major slow downs. Yes one of our cables broke but we found a good company in Arizona that came out to us, ordered the replacement cable from Amazon and did the repair withing two weeks. We were able to live in the RV the whole time. Some other minor issues we have handled ourselves, and undertaken some mods. All in all our Thor Challenger has been great to us and we are full timers.


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