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AtlantaCamper

Toyota Advanced Member
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About AtlantaCamper

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  • My Toyota Motorhome
    1988 Sunrader on a 1987 Toyota 22re EFI
  • Location
    Atlanta, GA

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  1. I had a similar issue with some peeling Zep and I used the Zep stripper. It works amazingly well at removing the Zep wax. It dissolves it quickly and easily and then you rinse it off. I was very pleased with how fast and effective the stripper is. It left the gel coat surface ready for re-waxing with no need for the BKF. I supposed I could have touched it up with BKF, but the surface looked really clean and even with just the stripper. Then I re-waxed with thinner more even coats and it looks better and is holding up better than the first time I applied the wax (which I put on too thick on each coat).
  2. Apparently this one is up for grabs in Colorado, posted yesterday in CL: https://denver.craigslist.org/rvs/d/byers-ft-toyota-coachman-rv-motor-home/6869702433.html "ITS FREE TO THE FIRST PERSON ABLE TO TOW" 1984 21' "Coachman" Wow, this is a pretty cool deal for someone who is willing to put the work in to get it back into good shape.
  3. This must be the one in Colorado: https://fortcollins.craigslist.org/rvs/d/loveland-toyota-sunrader-rv-18/6843200704.html It needs a lot of work. If you are not a mechanic or DIY person then you should most likely stay away from this rig.
  4. I've used Uship a few times to ship large heavy items. You submit a job on the site and people will bid on it. These are often independent people who are already going from one place to another with room/weight to spare. Other times it's professionals that are moving cars and looking to fill some room on their rig. I've had good experiences each time I've used Uship. Moving a car from coast to coast can be in the $600 to $1000 range so a shorter distance won't be as much. It's worth taking a look or even signing up and posting a job to see what offers you get. It might be a cost effective way to avoid stressing out your Toy.
  5. In terms of a rooftop AC unit, many get by without one depending on the climate and time of year you will be using it. An AC unit would replace one of the two vents on the roof. As Linda said, you will need to assess the roof strength to determine if it is feasible. Derek thinks those beams are added in and this is definitely something to evaluate very carefully. AC units are not overly difficult to install if you are handy, although you have to devise a way to lift it up to the roof safely. Your other option would be to have it installed at an RV store. I do not know what this installation cost would be. Cost for new units is in the approximately $600 to $1200 range. I see them come up on craigslist from time to time used. If there is no AC electrical wiring already in place that would have to be included in the install. Best bet would probably be to try it out as-is and then consider the AC situation down the road (if it's even possible with that roof). If you go look at it, check carefully for any water damage at the seams, the roof, and around the floor. Get under it and take a look too if you can (on top too if it's safe).
  6. Hmm, not sure on that. I think it's a matter of the mount eye hole size, the width and the eye to eye center distance. If all of those match the specs then it should work.
  7. Sounds like you are going to get some practice wrestling springs on and off! Are you running those E78-14LT tires on all 6 wheels? Interesting. "Ride height" is relative and changes with tire diameter of course, but the frame rail between front and rear tires should be (ideally) level regardless of tire height. Use the frame rail level as a guide. Note that you measure the front height from the center of the bolt on the lower control arm and in the rear you simply measure from the bottom of the frame to the ground near the rear wheel where the hump in the frame comes back to flat. The measurements front and rear are not the same value and different years have different heights. The FSM did not correlate to my actual heights and my shackle lengths were different than stock. The point being, you need to figure out what "level stock height" is for you at the front and back. The front is more likely to match what is in the FSM, like 10.2". Get it set there with the torsion bars and then make the frame level and measure the rear and that is stock height for you. In my case I took stock level and then raised it by about an inch all around because I wanted more clearance. Take a little time and figure out what stock level is for your rig if you can. It really just takes a 12" ruler, a long carpenter's square and some patience (a level concrete pad helps too). In the end, it's ok to have a little bit more height in the back, but not too much. like 0.5" higher in rear stock height compared to front is not an issue. 1" is kind of pushing it, 1.5" is really way too much. I still have a concern that you will end up a little high in the rear with the 09R's plus air bags. I'll be very interested to find out where your heights come out. You might want to be prepared to crank the front up a bit with the torsion bars if necessary to level things out. 05" to 0.75" lift in the front is possible with the stock setup but you will need to do alignment after that. More that 0.75" lift on the front with torsion adjustment might need either a ball joint spacer or low profile bump stops on the upper control arm to keep decent front end travel distances. It does take some time adn a few miles to settle the rear springs so don't freak out when you first install and they are higher than you expected. Mine settled down by 0.7" after running them for a little while and then they stayed put after that. doing the front end bushings and shocks is a very good idea. I did the same and I'm glad I did. Doing that in parallel with the springs will help you get the whole rig set up where you want it. Don't forget about front end alignment when you are all done. At a minimum be sure and check the front by eye to make sure the camber is decent (tires sitting upright, not leaning in or out noticeably).
  8. Not sure how to answer that question You can get an idea of how your springs are doing by getting under it with all the weight on the springs (no jacks) and looking at the springs. This is a crude analysis, but look at my old springs on the right in the pictures below. They are pretty much "flat" and ride height in this case is 0.5" lower than spec. Worse, they are 'bumping" on the air bag inner safety bumpers in that picture. The springs were tired and although with 50 psi in the air bags they did rise up to over spec height (thus being "ok" with spring plus air bag combo), I decided to change the springs. On the left you see the new springs with no air in the air bags and they are not 'flat' but rather have some arch when you look down the spring. The new springs sit 0.5" higher than spec height with no air in the air bags. Another other way you can get an idea of how your springs are doing is by measuring "ride height". You can measure the height of the front end and the rear end and compare to the specs in the FSM. I can post more on this if you are interested. The key here is that, ideally, the rear frame rail should be level when parked on a level surface. If your front end is at spec height and your frame is level on level ground then your rear springs would be doing their job ok. Based on the pictures it doesn't look like your rig is riding all that low in the rear. Why exactly are you interested in putting air bags in? If you lift the rear then you will have a front to back rake and than can potentially cause your fridge to behave badly.
  9. The 09R is probably a good choice for an 18". I did the spring swap in the "are my springs blown" thread. I bought the 10R's and ended up taking a leaf out to make them into the less expensive 09R's. If you get the 09R's and still want more lift then you can have my extra leafs to turn them into 10R's. My guess is that the 10R's would lift the rear of an 18' too high though. Something I found out the hard way about these springs. They can have variation of as much as 1/4" high or low and still be in spec. They will have a "+" for high or a "-" for low painted on them near the end that mounts in the forward fixed mount. Or it will have no extra mark if they are exactly at spec. Often folks will order specific pairs to compensate for a heavier side of the vehicle. I got a pair that came with one + and one -. I mounted them exactly opposite of what I needed the first time, so I had to swap them around (one side is heavier on mine and by sheer dumb luck the +/- set I received balance out perfect on my rig). I'm guessing it's a crap shoot when you order unless you call and ask what they have in stock. A half inch difference is quite a bit if you get one + and one - so you may want to look into this if you can. I have no idea how to tell if you have a heavier side or not without going to some scales. performanceworks on ebay has pairs for sale and maybe if you ask them they can tell you what is specifically included in the pair they have for sale (at the same price as 4WheelParts). Do you have airbags or just springs alone? My 21' is probably a good bit heavier and my only concern might be that even the 09R's will end up being a tad high on an 18' rig. With no air in my air bags the 09R's still had about 1/2" of lift over stock height. If it ends up riding too high on your rig you can potentially level it with different shackles to lower the rear or by 'cranking' the front end up just a tad with the torsion bars. Does your front end currently ride at spec height? The 09R's have the exact same number of leafs as the stock Toyota spring pack, but they are designed to lift a light pickup about 2". We are taking this same spring designed to lift a light stock pickup/4Runner and using the weight of the camper to squash it down so that it basically ends up being less than 2" of lift. Exactly how much your rig will compress/squash the springs down from the 2" lift is a function of your rear end weight. In my case it went down to 0.5" with the 09R spring. What happens if your's has a lift of 1" because it's lighter than mine? We are re-purposing these cost effective springs made for the 4x4 crowd but there is a bit of risk involved because we have limited data on the resulting lift on different motorhome rigs. FWIW, I ordered three sets of "Leaf Spring Shackle Bushing MOOG K200909" and they did not fit the spring correctly. They were just a bit too long. I was easily able to cut off 1/8" from the end of each bushing but I'd suggest trying a different brand/part to see if you have better luck than I did with the bushings. Linda had the good info, I didn't tell you anything useful on that tank issue )-: I didn't even know they made black tanks out of ABS... I guess there is a lot more variation across these toyota motorhomes than I thought.
  10. I agree. I had the incorrect assumption that the fluid was getting too hot. I used OD very little on my trip last week. Unless there is a downhill run or a tailwind the OD caused the trans temp to go from ~165 to 185 in pretty short order. I pretty much leave it off and run high RPMs in 3rd.
  11. I think I'll just leave it as-is or maybe move the sensor. It doesn't sounds like I'm cooking the fluid too much. If I do want to add any extra cooling in the future I'd likely just add a separate remote cooler with a thermostat controlled fan. For now it's fine as is. Thanks for the comments.
  12. I did some work on the holding tank plumbing recently. The tanks are make of polyethylene while the pipes and valves are usually made of ABS plastic. The tank to ABS sewer pipe is typically a sealant specific for that purpose. You want to separate the polyethylene output pipe from the black tank from the ABS (usually 3") pipe and then re-join them there with the correct sealant when you are putting it all back together. On my sunrader the black tank is sitting on top of a removable steel rail. I can remove my black tank by taking off that 3" ABS drain pipe, the ABS 1.5" vent pipe, plus the joint to the toilet (and this can be hard to get to) and then removing some bolts to remove the steel bars and the black tank will come down. This is not easy or pleasant. Bummer that you have to remove the black tank to do the springs. Out of curiosity, are you buying new springs and if so, which ones?
  13. Good to know that you don't think I'm running too hot. Are the spikes to 200 for short periods on the fluid coming out of the trans acceptable? I get anxious going up a hill with the engine running cool but trans temps climbing rapidly. I can chill (pun intended) if indeed I'm just operating within an acceptable temperature range. Perhaps I should just keep things as-is and keep an eye on my trans fluid color. No need to add some complex cooling system if I'm not actually having a serious heating problem. I've been systematically changing it out 2 quarts at a time for the last 8 months. I think I'm on fluid swap #5. I've also just received a filter and pan gasket so I plan to take a look inside and see how things look when I change the trans filter. I know there is a lot of debate about where to measure the trans temp. I put mine in an easy spot. Some data is better than no data, I guess. Likely I could get a better idea of what is going back into the trans by moving the sensor to the other side of the radiator as you suggest and catching what comes out of the trans cooler. It may be relatively simple to move that sensor over to the other side.
  14. I would like to add a thermostat controlled fan to cool the transmission fluid. When I looked at the transmission cooler mounted at the very front of the vehicle I didn't see any room to mount a small fan dedicated to the transmission cooling unit. There isn't much room between the transmission cooler and the front plastic grille. Overall there is a stack of the small transmission cooler in front (like 10" cooler), then the cooler for the AC system that is the same size as the radiator, and then the engine radiator behind that. Last in line is the clutch driven fan with shroud. Is there some trick to adding a fan in the very front on the small-ish transmission cooler? Or do I need to behind an entirely new transmission cooler somewhere else and use a thermostat driven fan controller to turn it on and off? The problem I am seeing is that when I climb the engine doesn't get overly hot and so the clutch driven fan doesn't run all that much, but meanwhile the transmission fluid get hot and I don't have a way to cool it on demand. On the freeway I generally see about 165 to 170 F for fluid measured coming out of the trans just before it enters the bottom of the main radiator. It gets up to 200 F sometimes when really stressed and I'd like to keep it lower than that. I was not able to find any other previous discussion on this particular topic, but please point me in the right direction if I searched poorly.
  15. Correct. I decided to keep all 7 tires the same and in 2 to 6 years I'll be able to report back on how they are doing 🙂
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