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Old 08-11-2017, 11:02 PM   #1
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anybody know what this is?

I found this in my new HW296 never seen one before. My 2010 Hw 296 didn't have one.
Anybody have an idea what this is?
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Old 08-12-2017, 07:07 AM   #2
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I think its a tool for adjusting the lift system, but it's not mentioned in the literature anywhere.
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Old 08-14-2017, 10:36 AM   #3
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I've been wondering the same thing, it's driving me nuts!
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Old 08-14-2017, 12:17 PM   #4
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Limiter switch adjusting tool. My 2716 came with the same one.
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Old 08-14-2017, 12:59 PM   #5
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I believe it I mentioned in the pile of literature. It is indeed an adjusting tool. Dealer should have gone over it, but from what I read here some take your money and tell you to hitch up and get off the lot.
It is for fine tuning of the lift system if the top stops before the cable has some tension on it or if it stops prior to contacting the cutoff switch. Dealer should have tested it from the factory before letting you have it. You shouldn't have to adjust it. But keep the tool anyway. There is a water filter removal wrench also.
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:05 PM   #6
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Great thank you! Our dealer did a very thorough walk thru with us, gave us some awesome tips that we followed thru with (considering we were complete newbies) but there's so much info, easy to forget things. So very grateful for this forum.
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:39 PM   #7
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Yes the walk through was thorough but like you said so much info. I just happened to remember the little orange tool because he made a point that he was putting it in the bag and said I'd probably never need it but it was good to have if ever needed because most don't carry one in their camping and road tool bag. I shudder at the nightmares I hear of dealer experiences. Met a couple from another state a couple of weeks ago that said they didn't even have keys to their unit. Another said they didn't know how to do certain things a dealer should have gone over.
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Old 08-14-2017, 01:50 PM   #8
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I filmed the orientation. When I reviewed it a year later, I realized that I had forgotten many things that the dealer told us. It's best to pay attention, ask questions, and film the event.

The only thing was putting on the WDH bars. The guy didn't really know what he was doing and we drove across the country with the bolts holding the chains bottoming out going over speed bumps in campgrounds, until I watched a video showing that I should have gone up a few links on the chains to get the bars horizontal.

Glad to know about the strange tool as I have to make a minor adjustment to the winch. Now, how does one use it?
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Old 08-14-2017, 08:01 PM   #9
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Use of the adjusting tool will be covered in next years Forest River's news letter. (:>)
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Old 08-15-2017, 03:35 PM   #10
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You know now that this tool adjusts the limit switch.
Now the bad news.
The limit switch is not well designed or made. It has a plastic gear that engages a large steel gear on the winch. It also has a plastic key and keyway to get it to drive a rotating drum on the limit switch.

Inspect and lube often. My plastic gear broke and the key sheared off the drum, so replacing the gear would be useless. I ended up disabling the limit switch (removed the guts and made sure the two switches were 'closed') and now just do what any intelligent person does...let go of the toggle switch when the roof it all the way up (against the red tether cable) or down.

A replacement is about $38, so it's not terribly expensive, but the design is so poor I won't bother until I need to sell the camper.
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Old 08-16-2017, 02:57 PM   #11
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It would be great if someone could do a YouTube video on it's function and post it. That would help a lot of newbies out. Thx.
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Old 08-16-2017, 03:48 PM   #12
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This manual explains setting the limit switches. See page 6.
https://www.carefreeofcolorado.com/d...nch-Manual.pdf
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Old 08-16-2017, 04:19 PM   #13
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P.S.
While it's possible you may not need to adjust your limit switches, it's reasonable to expect that the upper limit may need attention due to cable stretch, differences in how the cable wraps on the drum, a problem with the pulley attached to the rear of the camper frame that enables the cable to change directions, and so on. The lower limit is less likely to need adjustment.

But the way the limit switch works is that is simply counts revolutions of the winch mechanism. It's not a "smart" switch. As the plastic gear on the limit switch turns the outer drum on the limit switch, it simply drives internal gears that move little actuator nubs back and forth on threaded shafts. As one of the nubs engages the plunger on one switch, it "opens" (shuts off) the switch, and the motor shuts off. There are two of these shafts with nubs on them and two switches. One or the other works as the extreme "limits" of the winch's travel. Adjustment is arbitrary...set by observation and trial-and-error.

As the winch and lift mechanism age and wear, it's possible for one or both limit switches to go out of adjustment.

As I mentioned, my limit switch mechanism failed completely, because the plastic gear and the "key" and "keyway" that enable the gear to drive the outer drum broke and sheared off. The gear and key/keyway should all be metal...probably brass or bronze for durability and corrosion resistance. ABS plastic (which is what I think they are made of) are simply not up to the rigors of a job like this in an environment that is both wet and filthy.

Effective this spring, my "limit" switch became paying attention and using the red tether cable that warns that you're at the top of the lift mechanism travel. I hold the red tether cable and stop when it gets snug (not tight). Maintaining the red tether cable is easy. Keep the screws snug, and don't be stupid enough to break the cable or connectors on either end.
On the way down, at the last minute I hold the lift cable and allow it to develop about 2 or 3 inches of slack in the cable to enable me to clamp down the roof without pulling against a snug cable. This is pretty much the same way you'd do it with a hand-crank winch...pay attention and nothing gets broken.

You know your roof is raised to the Goldilocks point (just right), when the entry door fits perfectly under the upper retaining turn-buttons on the roof that hold the door in place.

The limit switch idiot-proofs your electric winch, and if you allow others to operate your lift mechanism, that's a good thing. But NOBODY else operates my winch. Why would they? I don't loan the camper, and there's just no plausible reason to delegate that job to someone who doesn't know what s/he's doing...unless, of course, I'm dead. In which case, I don't care.
My wife, by the way, knows what's she's doing...she can operate a toggle switch and watch a little red wire get snug. But she's normally busy with other setup tasks.
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