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Old 06-26-2014, 08:45 AM   #1
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You can say "I told you so" a long read, but worth it...

I ignored good advise here and now am paying the price...
We took a 173 mile (one way) trip this past weekend. 8 miles away from our destination I feel the TV slowing down and I wasn't really climbing any hills. I soon after get a call from my wife (who was following me because she had to go home early) saying that she thought I blew a tire on the camper because rubber chunks were hitting her car. I pull of the side of the road (along with the rest of our caravan) and sure enough, I had a blow out on the door side of the camper. Well, NO PROBLEM, I have two spares (although just a bit smaller) and should have a problem getting the rest of the way. I get the old tire off and notice a ground wire to the frame had pulled through the floor from the failed tire. I push the wire back up the tube in the floor, and get out one of the spares. Go to put it on, and soon realize a 5 lug spare, wont fit a 6 lug axle... NO PROBLEM, theres a camping world just a few miles back. Load the tire into the wifes car had go there. They have a tire, but its an hour wait to have it mounted. Well, our convoy is on the side of NB US127 near Higgins Lake Mi (our destination) and I want to get everyone off the side of the highway ASAP. The girl behind the services desk called a local tire shop and sure enough, they had a tire and could do it right away. Got the new tire put on, in the pouring rain, and finished the drive.
Get to the CG, go to fill the water tank (which took almost an hour because they were having problems with the spiget) and park the camper on our site (which was WAY smaller than listed online). Go to put out the slide and nothing... Well that wire that the tire damaged must have something to do with the slide. Well former owner said that she on occasion would help her husband push out the slide, so I go underneath the camper, disengauge the slide motor and nope its (the slide out) not moving, regurdless of who pushes on it. Well, I see a place to crank the slide out manually. So I go looking for the D shaped crank arm and I must not have one... Back to CW I go. Find out that is a Jayco only part and the nearest Jayco dealer is 125 miles away. A tech at CW said, why not just hook up jumper cables to the slide out motor since it is a Power Gear and run it out that way. I had thought about doing that before, but I didn't want to damage anything. So I had left CW, stopped at walmart to see if I could find a tool that might allow me to turn the manual crank and what did I find, a Gator Grip socket, Yep you know the spark plug socket with the spring loaded pins inside to fit any bolt. I bought it and get back to the CG and try it, NOPE the gear wont turn (must be rusted solid). Well, I need the slide out, out so jumper cables it is. Crawl back under the camper and find the 2 wires to the motor and a couple real nice crimp connections to hook to. I get the slide out out (the fastest it has ever moved out) and go in the camper to find a burning electrical smell. At first I think its just from when I made the connection under the camper. But when the smell doesn't go away after a while, I start to investigate. I remove some of the drawers in the kitchen where the smell is the strongest and find the slide out controller and another wire hanging there. I remove the controller and its toast... Turns out the two wires were both grounds and had been pulled off the controler when the tire failed. When I hooked up the jumper cables I burned the contoller. If I were to have just taken the time to figure out why the slide out wouldn't work, I could have saved my self a lot of money. Looks like I will be buying a NEW controller and harness because the old one has ben discountinued... All because I chose to ignore advice to replace the tires, all I wanted to do is wait till spring. Its o.k. to say I told you so.....Dave

'97 Jayco Eagle 314BHS

'03 Tahoe LT 5.3L
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Old 06-26-2014, 09:00 AM   #2
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There's a place in heaven ....

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Old 06-26-2014, 09:03 AM   #3
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At least nobody got hurt !!

How old were the tires? Were they dry rotted and cracked?
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Old 06-26-2014, 09:29 AM   #4
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Been there done that. Old tires are a time bomb on campers, Had one blow out on our old camper we were moving after sitting on a lot for 8 years. Went 1 1/2 hour back to Walmart to change it, then 1 hour later another tire blew. We had to abandon the camper until the next day.
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Old 06-26-2014, 09:45 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by 33 RLDS View Post
At least nobody got hurt !!

How old were the tires? Were they dry rotted and cracked?
They are the orignal Goodyear marathons, so 17 years on a set isn't too bad is it? Dry rotted, cracked ect...ect...ect... The one that failed looked the worst and was soft when we bought the camper, but they all look bad and held 50 psi until last Friday. We are going to loan our camper to a pastor in the beginning of August (the next time its going to be used) so I am planning on replacing the remaining 3 before then. I didn't have any problems on the way home yesterday, but I don't want them to have any problems when they use it.
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Old 06-26-2014, 11:13 AM   #6
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Man, I take my hat off!

Happy trails in the future pal.

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"If you can't be smart; be stubborn.". DG.
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Old 06-26-2014, 03:19 PM   #7
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Having to stop alongside a highway to deal with a shredded tire really focuses your attention on tire durability and safety. As it did to me one time in that situation.

Consider getting a TPMS; your tire may go flat, but at least with a TPMS you usually will have enough time to get off the road to a safe place to fix the problem.
There's lots of advice and information in forums... sometimes it is correct. For example, all of my posts are made by a political appointee who got the job as a reward for contributions to my diesel bill.

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Old 06-27-2014, 08:14 PM   #8
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North or South Higgins?

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Old 06-28-2014, 09:55 PM   #9
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Had my first blow out ever, in many, mant years of camping a couple of years ago. Thank goodness it was in Illinois, where the speed limit for towing a trailer is 55. I two though I could get just one more trip on 7 year old tires. My story was no where as bad as your though, although, I will admit you do write a good story, even if it is a tale of, "I Told Ya So" !

Be safe out there, Dave with a sincere hope that that will be your last bad insident towing or not !!!!
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Old 06-29-2014, 04:56 AM   #10
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We have a member here on the list who has this proverb in his tagline....

EDUCATION is what you get when you read the fine print.....
EXPERIENCE is what you get when you don't.

and I guess we can all add a third line to that......

No one has an ANECDOTE from their EDUCATION...but everyone has an ANECDOTE from their EXPERIENCE.....

Thanks for being a good sport and keeping a sense of humor

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