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 > Your search for posts made by 'rdhetrick' found 44 matches.

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RE: 2015 Ford Focus flat tow damage

I think Ford would be responsible only if the baseplate was designed and supplied by Ford. As an engineer myself, it's hard to predict what an end user might do - that I need to design around. Top be absurd, should Ford design the hood hinge bolts to handle being flat towed if someone wanted to pull the car with suction cups on the hood?!?! I'm afraid the flat tow "endorsement" from Ford was probably geared towards the transmission only. The actual method of connecting the car was outside their design parameters. For example, when I installed my Blue Ox baseplate, for each side, I used some existing holes, but I had to drill a big one to get the nuts into the rail. I seriously doubt the existing holes were placed there by Ford for this purpose, I could be wrong though. Certainly, they didn't design for the big hole that had to be drilled. What would be interesting to know is whether there was any interaction between Ford and Roadmaster (or BlueOx, or any other baseplate manufacturer) when Roadmaster designed the baseplate, or whether Ford provides any design criteria for attaching parts to the vehicle. In addition to the baseplate, I installed a receiver hitch on the back to carry bikes. From what I remember, it used existing holes as well. I'm in a different industry altogether, so I could be way off base here!
rdhetrick 09/13/21 11:53am Dinghy Towing
RE: 2015 Ford Focus flat tow damage

That's pretty bad! I'm glad you were moving slowly, that would have been bad if you were on the highway! Some interesting things I can see in the photos: Photo 1 - the welds are all still intact to the connection plate. Photo 2 - The frame tube is where the failure occurred. It looks like there might be some rust at some of the fracture locations, indicating a long term fatigue failure. This tells me it was probably not a manufacturing defect, rather a design problem. Not necessarily a Ford design problem, just that the member sizes weren't adequate for the added stress of being towed. On the other hand, Ford states that it CAN be flat towed. I suspect that they didn't have a full grasp of the stresses involved. If memory serves me correctly, 2015 was the first or second year the Focus was flat towable. Anyway, sorry this happened to you, hopefully others can learn from it. Sure makes me glad I got rid of mine a few years back!
rdhetrick 09/13/21 09:13am Dinghy Towing
RE: 2015 Ford Focus flat tow damage
rdhetrick 09/13/21 08:02am Dinghy Towing
RE: 2015 Ford Focus flat tow damage

I used to have a 2015 Focus that I flat towed. I installed the base plate myself so I'm pretty familiar with the front of the car. I don't know exactly what happened to the OP, but I surmise from his description that the frame broke rearwards of the base frame attachment point. Like many base plates, it is attached with 6 bolts - 3 on each side. Additionally, the base plate is connected to the frame via two cables - not the safety cables between the car and coach. On the focus, those "internal" cables also attach to the frame, so if the frame gave way, the cables would go with it. Hopefully there was an aux brake system that stopped the car after it came loose. Having said all of that, I can't imagine Ford, or any other manufacturer for that matter, repairing something like that, warranty or not - even a frame that is just bent, results in a total write off.
rdhetrick 09/12/21 05:14pm Dinghy Towing
RE: Gas regulator issue, or Fridge?

Turn off the DC, light the stove, does the sound come back?
rdhetrick 09/02/21 06:05am Tech Issues
RE: How fast do the gray and black tanks fill

rdhetrick 08/30/21 06:15pm Beginning RVing
RE: Need help - Weight distribution hitch installation pics

Photos showed up fine for me....
rdhetrick 08/30/21 06:10pm Towing
RE: Need help - Weight distribution hitch installation pics

I don't know anything about that particular hitch, but based on your description and the measurements you posted, I think you need more tension on the spring bars. The fact that your front fender measurement with the W/D hooked up is still higher than with no trailer means you're not transferring enough up to the steer tires. Back when I had a TT, I adjusted it so my front measurement was the same if not a slight bit lower than when un-hooked. This is good for ball-parking it, but as others will probably add shortly, you should get to a scale to see what is really happening. If this system is anything like mine was, the more spring force there was, the more sway control it provided.
rdhetrick 08/30/21 04:51pm Towing
RE: Interesting dog names

I rescued a dog last year, named him "RV" - pronounced "Harvey"
rdhetrick 07/30/21 10:27am RV Pet Stop
RE: water heater works fine - IF- I leave door open

My guess is the airflow mixture/regulator needs to be adjusted to get more airflow into the burner. Have you travelled to a higher elevation than you are normally at?
rdhetrick 05/08/21 06:31pm Tech Issues
RE: Fish bowl cooling class A

I have always had a problem cooling and heating the fish bowl on my RV. The dash air has never cooled the fish bowl and the front air does not send enough air while driving to the front. I’ve tried directing the flow to the front, using a fan to push the cool air to the front, nothing works. Also I do drive mostly out west with temps over 90 many times. So has anyone done any creative ac mods to help this situation ? Like replacing the dash ac system and putting in something that works, or adding some type of stand alone ac unit in the front ? Let me know Jcat 2004 Mandalay 40 D Having a very similar coach as you, I face the exact same problem. Hot in the summer, cold in the winter. In the winter, I can feel the cold air, in the summer, it's just generally hot. I suspect air leaking in from outside but I haven't been able to pinpoint where it's coming from. I even put a fog machine in the generator bay while parked looking to see where the air came in, with no luck. In the summer, I've had the most success opening the louvers on the front air so most of the air blows straight down, and a fan a few feet behind that blowing forward. Certainly not cold up front, but made it a little more tolerable. My bigger problem is keeping the engine from overheating in those conditions! I recently got a thermal camera and will be using it on my next trip to try and see where the air is coming in from - I suspect it might be around the stair well. It will probably be more revealing in the winter, but I'll try it anyway. If I come up with anything useful, I'll follow up here. Forgot to mention - I had the dash air serviced a few years ago, it seemed to help in the sub 90 temps, but didn't make a difference above 90. The next year, it didn't seem to make much difference at any temp, and I'm not about to spend $500 or $600 each year for a marginal improvement.
rdhetrick 05/03/21 11:35am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Towing with Auto Leveling

As mentioned before, the purpose of the weight distribution is to put weight back on the steer axle. The only way you can effectively do this is to use a scale. Just looking at whether or not the truck is level is not a good indication. After you've got the weight shifted to the steer axle, you'll probably only have a very slight "out of level" on the truck.
rdhetrick 04/13/21 03:39am Towing
RE: Park suggestions/opinions in or near San Jose, CA.

I've stayed at Coyote Valley RV several times while working in Cupertino. It was always well kept and clean and quiet. Far enough away from the "big city" but close to all the grocery and shopping stores in Morgan Hill. I'll stay there again next time I need to be in the area.
rdhetrick 03/29/21 07:10pm General RVing Issues
RE: backing up 4 down jeep jk

As far as I understand, the issue with backing is the steering wheel going one way while you want the vehicle to go the other way. I've seen people get around this by using a heavy bungee strap through the steering wheel attached to the brake pedal (only when backing up, not when moving forward). I've backed up a few feet also with no ill effects. I find it hard to believe that backing up a few feet would hurt he transmission/transfer case and the note about towing backwards means just what it says - don't TOW it backwards. Furthermore, it backing it up a few feet really caused damage, I would certainly expect to have heard about it somewhere. To the contrary, seems like a lot of people have said they back up a few feet when absolutely necessary without any damage. Just my two cents...
rdhetrick 03/29/21 05:58am Dinghy Towing
RE: Used Tow Bar Values

I don't know how anyone gets their tow bar "inspected" or rebuilt or repaired. I have a Blue Ox that I have attempted to have looked at but Blue Ox NEVER responds to email. Interesting, mine is also a Blue Ox. I've not tried to get it checked out, but was thinking about trying this summer.
rdhetrick 03/28/21 12:27pm Dinghy Towing
RE: Used Tow Bar Values

I'm sure there are lots of opinions on this, but for me, I wouldn't take the chance buying a used towbar. The manufacturer of mine recommends "service" every year or two if I remember correctly. If a new one cost $1k and a used one was $500, I personally couldn't justify saving $500 for something that has a lot riding behind it! For others, it's an acceptable risk. Don't get me wrong, I buy used stuff all the time, but in my mind, some used things just aren't worth the risk. Fire Extinguishers are another thing that comes to mind!
rdhetrick 03/23/21 04:40pm Dinghy Towing
RE: 2006 Hurricane is this a great deal or a big headache

You’re right . . . They’re not junk . . . They’re Garbage Well, I guess Tiffins are junk too since they're now owned by Thor!
rdhetrick 03/16/21 07:17pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: 2006 Hurricane is this a great deal or a big headache

A Hurricane is a Thor. I would not buy any thor product if my life depended on it. Just my opinion as they are known to be JUNK Go for a used Winnebago, Tiffin or Newmar They're not junk, but they're not high end motorhomes either...they are what they are... What's your budget? I can practically guarantee you won't find one of the three listed above in similar condition for a similar price - that's to be expected. The best thing you can do is go look at different motorhomes. There are always deals to be found, no need to rush into something without knowing anything about it. You may not like travelling in a motorhome, you may love it. If you get an expensive one and don't like it, it's a mistake. If you get a low cost one and love it, you upgrade. I'd expect there are very few people here that are still travelling in their first RV. You have to learn what you like, what you don't like, and often, your needs will change over the years. Don't be afraid of a Thor product, just understand what they are and have the right expectations. If you bought a Chevy expecting it to have the bells and whistles of a Cadillac, you'd be disappointed, but if you expect it to be equipped like a Chevy, you'd be quite happy. Look around, go to shows, talk to people. Without knowing your expectations, no one can tell you if it's the RIGHT deal for you.
rdhetrick 03/16/21 06:07pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: Bought a new coach & what about address

Be careful with some of the advice here. It depends on the state you end up with. I can say that in Texas, a box at the UPS store isn't good enough for a domicile and you can't get a drivers license using one. I use one for other reasons, but I have a lease at a campground that is my official domicile. Escapees in Livingston TX is a popular one for those looking to domicile in TX.
rdhetrick 03/14/21 02:22pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: Damage at Palo Duro Zip Line RV - Texas south of Amarillo

That's terrible, I feel bad for those folks. It looks like the coach didn't get blown over, but maybe one of the others was blown into it. I'm curious how insurance would handle something like that.
rdhetrick 03/14/21 05:47am General RVing Issues
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