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Old 04-08-2013, 07:05 AM   #1
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Equalizer Jacks

I bought a new 2013 Berkshire 390RB the jacks on it have very small diamiter piston rams for a coach with a 28000 GVW.After leveling the coach i would hear this cracking sound and i am on a very level site well after a week the left side of the coach fell down violently.I found that the rams went right the the feet plates ripping one to shreads.I called equalizer and they sent new ones which were reinforced with gussets.Lazydays said they couldnt get me in for a month to have them installed.I put the new ones on myself now i have no more cracking.The bad plates looked like plates that belonged on a popup camper.Equalizer was very good about sending the parts in 2 days and was aware of the problem.But I dont think the jacks are going too last long because of the tiny diamiter of the jacks
Greg
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Old 04-08-2013, 09:42 AM   #2
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plootsa,

How difficult was it to install the new plates and how involved was the installation? I have one plate that needs replacing and was thinking about doing it myself.
Thanks,
Tom
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Old 04-08-2013, 11:17 PM   #3
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I bought a new 2013 Berkshire 390RB the jacks on it have very small diamiter piston rams for a coach with a 28000 GVW.After leveling the coach i would hear this cracking sound and i am on a very level site well after a week the left side of the coach fell down violently.I found that the rams went right the the feet plates ripping one to shreads.I called equalizer and they sent new ones which were reinforced with gussets.Lazydays said they couldnt get me in for a month to have them installed.I put the new ones on myself now i have no more cracking.The bad plates looked like plates that belonged on a popup camper.Equalizer was very good about sending the parts in 2 days and was aware of the problem.But I dont think the jacks are going too last long because of the tiny diamiter of the jacks
Greg

Had the same thing happen to me, although Eq Sys made me pay for my new pad since the coach was previously titled (but never used). And I didn't even get the reinforced ones!!

Scared the crap out of us; thought for sure someone had driven a truck into the back of it. All the neighbors came running outside because of the extremely loud noise.

Eq Sys told me they'd never had it happen before. Hmmmmmm.......

tmmar, they are easy to replace. You need a monster allen wrench (like .5 inch maybe) and a way to keep the piston from turning. We were able to grip a small "unpolished" area at the end of the piston (with a vice grips) and screw it right off. You may also be able to use one of those rubber strap oil filter remover wrenches too. The bolt that screws out is shaped like a funnel; I'd advice ordering a new one for each pad.

Finally, we used a little locktite blue just for safety and to keep the bolt from possibly vibrating out.

As far as the pistons being too "light" that may be possible. But I think if it happens again to me, I'll have 4 beefed up pads custom made at a metal shop. The pad just isn't "stout" enough for 7000 lbs, IMHO. Hopefully, plootsa is wrong about the rams themselves.

As someone pointed out earlier, it gives a whole new meaning to the warning to never crawl under a coach when it is supported only by the leveling jacks

Boowho??
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:17 AM   #4
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plootsa,

How difficult was it to install the new plates and how involved was the installation? I have one plate that needs replacing and was thinking about doing it myself.
Thanks,
Tom
The bolt is a 7/16 hex allen head I heated the center of the bolt enough to melt the loctite then used rubber tape abot 6 layers and grabed the piston with vice grips.I used a breaker bar also to get them out then used loctite blue which is #242 on the new bolts just be careful not to use too much heat which can ruin the seals i just kept feeling the piston too make sure it wasnt getting hot
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Old 04-09-2013, 12:35 PM   #5
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Just inspected our pads, very light surface rust on bottom, cleaned and painted. On the one's that broke was there any rust on them?
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Old 04-10-2013, 10:36 AM   #6
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plootsa,
About how much are the new pads and do you need to specify that you want the reinforced plates when you order are the new ones? Do the new ones come with a new bolt or does that need to be ordered separately?

Thanks for the info.
Tom
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Old 04-10-2013, 11:26 AM   #7
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plootsa,
About how much are the new pads and do you need to specify that you want the reinforced plates when you order are the new ones? Do the new ones come with a new bolt or does that need to be ordered separately?

Thanks for the info.
Tom

Sticking my nose in again....... Plootsa, I think yours were warrantied so I figured you may not know the price.

Each pad is about $35 and the bolt and extra $2.50 (or so)

I ordered one but wound up getting two for the one unit price because they accidentally sent the first one to the wrong address. The original order got forwarded a couple of weeks later.

Mine were ordered sometime in January or so, and I did not get the reinforced one. They didn't mention to me that it was available (at least at that time).




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Old 04-10-2013, 11:32 AM   #8
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Just inspected our pads, very light surface rust on bottom, cleaned and painted. On the one's that broke was there any rust on them?
Minimal rust on the one I replaced, NO3putt. The hole for the bolt is about 3/4 inch before and about 1.5 inches after the ram goes through. Apparently, the metal just isn't strong enough to hold.

Hopefully, this might vary from pad to pad and the one that failed was stamped from a flawed piece of sheet steel. Could happen that way, I'd guess??

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Old 04-14-2013, 01:44 PM   #9
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Minimal rust on the one I replaced, NO3putt. The hole for the bolt is about 3/4 inch before and about 1.5 inches after the ram goes through. Apparently, the metal just isn't strong enough to hold.

Hopefully, this might vary from pad to pad and the one that failed was stamped from a flawed piece of sheet steel. Could happen that way, I'd guess??

Boowho??
AArrrrgggghhhhhHH!! It happened again, this time on a FRONT jack. That's really a surprise as the front jacks only support about half the weight of the rear jacks.

I'm pretty surprised that this seems to be somewhat isolated. I would think that every Berkshire would be prone to this.

I'm going to call Eq Sys in the morning and have a serious discussion with them.

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Old 04-14-2013, 02:48 PM   #10
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Are you putting anything on the ground under your jacks? We always put some flat wood pads that are just bigger than the jack pads down and try to keep them level with the jack pads so they have a firm place to rest. I would think since the jack pads themself don't have a swivel point that you would be putting a lot of presure on the edge if they are not flat. Just my thoughts.
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Old 04-14-2013, 07:03 PM   #11
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Are you putting anything on the ground under your jacks? We always put some flat wood pads that are just bigger than the jack pads down and try to keep them level with the jack pads so they have a firm place to rest. I would think since the jack pads themself don't have a swivel point that you would be putting a lot of presure on the edge if they are not flat. Just my thoughts.

I've not been up to this point; maybe I should start.

The way they are attached to the end of the ram allows for a good bit of swivel/tilt, however.

Boowho??


P.S. I just notice your home location. I just sold my place in Hardscrabble Canyon on hwy 96 between Westcliffe and Wetmore.
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Old 04-14-2013, 07:33 PM   #12
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Went to Lowes and they had pre cut plywood circles about 16" across (1/2 plywood) glued and screwed two together and attached a rope handle on them. Even use them when parked on a pad, if anything else will keep the water off them when it rains and runs under the HM. Might even paint them one of these days when not busy.
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2015: 188 days, 2016: 72 days, 2017: 185 days: 2018 182 days
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Old 04-15-2013, 05:52 PM   #13
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AArrrrgggghhhhhHH!! It happened again ....... I'm going to call Eq Sys in the morning and have a serious discussion with them.

Boowho??
Had that discussion earlier today and they are going to replace all four pads with the new reinforced one. Jaymie said that they tested the new ones to over 12K lbs before punching through.

With that much beef up hopefully I've seen it for the last time.

MANY thanks to Equalizer Systems!!!

Boowho??
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Old 05-30-2013, 03:31 PM   #14
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Does anyone know the correct part number for the replacement pad? Equalizer systems web site is not very clear on which one to order. As you can see from my signature, I have a 2008 390bh.
Plootsa- I pm'd you on this as well.
Thanks.
Tom
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Old 06-02-2013, 11:30 PM   #15
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Does anyone know the correct part number for the replacement pad? Equalizer systems web site is not very clear on which one to order. As you can see from my signature, I have a 2008 390bh.
Plootsa- I pm'd you on this as well.
Thanks.
Tom
Tom, when I called EQ Sys on this all he needed from me was the year and model of the coach. I understand that only make one model of jacks for ALL the FR coaches.

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Old 06-04-2013, 06:27 AM   #16
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boo,
When I called Equalizer, the girl I spoke to said that I needed to go out and measure the pistons on the coach (length and diameter) and then go to a chart they have and see what the part numbers for the pads were before she could order them for me. I had to have her order them because the part numbers on their chart didn't match any on their web page. I hope that I got the measurements correct and that I get the correct part. That is why I was asking about the part numbers for the pads.
Tom
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Old 06-04-2013, 08:23 AM   #17
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Boowho - When you receive the replacement pads, please post the part number from the box so we know the right one to order. Thanks
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:29 AM   #18
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Boowho - When you receive the replacement pads, please post the part number from the box so we know the right one to order. Thanks

AArrrrrGG! They were replaced about a month ago and the packaging was pitched. Funny the girl is making you jump thru all these hoops. As soon as I mentioned it was a FR coach, the GUY knew exactly which ones I needed.

Tell the GIRL it's the ones that keep failing and had to be beefed up. Hopefully, she won't say "all of them keep failing".

I'll see if I can find his name.

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Old 06-06-2013, 03:21 PM   #19
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Boo,
Did you deal with a Jason Woonts (sp?) at Equalizer? Also, was the part number of the pad that you received no.3151? The pads on my jacks look like no.7821. They are round with splines coming out of the center. Also, my current pads are of a very heavy metal. If you could let me know what part number pad you received I would appreciate it.
Thanks,
Tom
ps- I am going to pm you about this incase you don't look at this thread for a while.
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Old 06-06-2013, 10:48 PM   #20
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Boo,
Did you deal with a Jason Woonts (sp?) at Equalizer? Also, was the part number of the pad that you received no.3151? The pads on my jacks look like no.7821. They are round with splines coming out of the center. Also, my current pads are of a very heavy metal. If you could let me know what part number pad you received I would appreciate it.
Thanks,
Tom
ps- I am going to pm you about this incase you don't look at this thread for a while.

For all who might need this info.... I THINK the contact guy that helped me was named Mike Lehman. I'm old, but I THINK that was his name. Maybe spelled Layman.

Second, the picture on their web site for PN 7818 LOOKS LIKE what they sent to me. Hopefully, when they beefed them up, they kept the same PN.

Can't tell from the pic whether it's a single or double layer of steel plate. But what I had and what I got, look like 7818; but the new ones are twice as thick.

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