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Buzzy's Question and Answer Forum
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Subject: Power steering pump (How do you check fluid level)


Author:
Joseph Smith
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 31/ 09, 9:05pm

I have a 1979 wanderlodge with 67000 miles on it and have never checked the power steering fluid, Does anyone know how and where to check it? It has the Cat.3208 turbo diesel.

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[> Subject: Re: Power steering pump (How do you check fluid level)


Author:
Dave
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 31/ 09, 9:54am

Joe,
The PS reservoir is a can mounted above the engine in the doghouse. In my 1980 3208 NA it is just left of the latch at the back of the hood when opened. Looks like an oil filter can in a real old car before spin on filters. There is a hex head on the top that is the dip stick.
Dave
1980 FC 31
VB1508

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[> [> Subject: Re: Power steering pump (How do you check fluid level)


Author:
joseph
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 31/ 09, 8:29pm

Thank you, It was sitting in front of me the whole time, I thought it was something to do with the oil.Thanks again..Joseph

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Power steering pump (How do you check fluid level)


Author:
Dave
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 31/ 09, 9:05pm

Don't feel bad, I thought the same thing myself for quite awhile `til I started tracing lines.
Dave

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Subject: Rallys for 2009


Author:
Al Scudder (Lookin for a party)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 31/ 09, 10:13am

Can anyboby email a list of rallys that are planned for Vintage Birds for 2009 Thanks

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[> Subject: Re: Rallys for 2009


Author:
Dave
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 31/ 09, 10:06am

Good idea Al, I'd like to see a list too. Maybe it could be posted on the website and/or included in the next newsletter.
Dave
1980 FC31
VB1508

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[> [> Subject: Re: Rallys for 2009


Author:
Dave
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 31/ 09, 10:13am

Give me an e-mail and I can send a picture.
Dave

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Subject: Mileage Question


Author:
Steve
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 30/ 09, 7:14pm

Can anyone tell me the aproximate mileage to expect from a Cummins 300 hp 8.3 liter turbo charged diesal 1994 37 ft Blubird Wanderlodge. It has an allison trans with 43.000 miles

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Subject: no heat at chassy


Author:
gene (good)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 30/ 09, 12:30pm

both valves at hot water tank and heater system have power when i switch from summer to winter at dash like there meant to work. how do know the valve to heat is opining. It is cold in the coach and system doesent
work. Is there a way you can turn on the valve for the coach heat manealy. Is there a way to check If the valves are good or are working. thanks gene

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[> Subject: Re: no heat at chassy


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 26/ 09, 5:32am

Gene, what year and type coach do you have? It would help to know that to help and troubleshoot your problem better. My 83PT40 has 4 valves and they must be all on. In some instances, the handle turns but the insides of the valve have remained in the closed position. Hope to heasr from you, Ernie

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[> [> Subject: Re: no heat at chassy


Author:
GENE
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 26/ 09, 7:00am

Ernie, The coach is a 82 FC33 all valves are open at the motor,valve at hot water tank is open and has power when switch is on summer.When I go to winter position I have power to chassis heat valve but heaters dont get hot.Both valves are in rear of coach under the bed.The to lines that feed the system are hot the return line is cold.Can you manually open the valve? how do they work? thanks gene

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: no heat at chassy


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 30/ 09, 6:53am

THere should be maybe two or more red handled gage valves
under the bus near the engine in the coolant lines.
These need to be open, If you have a Winter/Summer switch in the cockpit, there are several Sporlan valves ( electric solenoid valves) These valves are troublesome and need to be rebuilt (not a difficult job). The trick is to find them under the bus. One may be up front between the first chassis heater and the first gate valve , one in the rear near the last chassis heater and hot water tank plumbing

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: no heat at chassy


Author:
GENE
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 30/ 09, 9:09am

THANKS BILL,All gate valves are open I have located the sporlan valves. One up front two in back in the worst possible locations. The boys at the factory im sure chuckled while installing the valves. Thanks Gene

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[> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: no heat at chassy


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 30/ 09, 12:30pm

Gene:
Stephen Birtles has the Sporlan valve repair Kits.

888 668 4288
Or go to dupreeproducts.com
Stephen 77 fc 35

Also there is lots of info on this chassis heating issue at this web site
http://www.wanderlodgeownersgroup.com/forums/

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Subject: tire replacemt; balancing??


Author:
Mel Mellinger
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 26/ 09, 9:38am

I'm replacing 6 tires on my '85 PT36--4 drives and 2 tags are yr 2000 & 2004--I'm getting mixed information from tire folks re whether or not balancing is required for the drive and tags; anyone here with experience that can advise ?

Mel Mellinger

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[> Subject: Re: tire replacemt; balancing??


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 9/ 08, 5:18am

Most folks just use the balancing on their steer tires.

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[> Subject: Re: tire replacemt; balancing??


Author:
ed leamon
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 26/ 09, 9:38am

have had many tire changed on my 85 pt36 with bags added at the time the tires were put on every thing is smooooth the balance bags are cheap and used by many truckers good luck

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Subject: Bluebird Paint


Author:
Don Meyer (sanding,sanding,sanding!!!)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 25/ 09, 1:07pm

Hello fellow Bird owners,

I have a 1986 PT38. I am prepping it for some paint work. Does anyone know where the best place to buy original BB colors from. I have the Dupont numbers, but would like to buy from a supplier that is familiar with BB/Dupont paint codes.

Thanks,
Don Meyer

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Subject: 79 FC35 XV SB on board safe location


Author:
Dan Rowell
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Date Posted: 01/ 25/ 09, 6:36am

As a new BB owner,I have studied all of the past entries to this site. Can anyone tell me the location of the on-board safe if my 79 FC35 XV SB had this option? thanks Dan R

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[> Subject: Re: 79 FC35 XV SB on board safe location


Author:
keith carpenter
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Date Posted: 01/ 14/ 09, 6:43pm

yes I had a 79 xv it is located on the left side of the entry steps as you enter open the door and it should be there

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[> [> Subject: Re: 79 FC35 XV SB on board safe location


Author:
Dan Rowell
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 15/ 09, 10:36am

Keith, thanks for the info. I guess mine doesn't have that option. The only thing in that compartment on mine is the shore power switchbox. thanks again for the reply,Dan R

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[> Subject: Re: 79 FC35 XV SB on board safe location


Author:
bob maloney
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Date Posted: 01/ 25/ 09, 6:34am

the safe in my 79 was under the forward ding tabe seat

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[> [> Subject: Re: 79 FC35 XV SB on board safe location


Author:
bob maloney
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 25/ 09, 6:36am

DINING got hang over my speller is not working

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Subject: Insurance


Author:
Lionel Fram
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Date Posted: 01/ 22/ 09, 9:49am

I could use some ideas on insurance Please I am not full time but would like to be down the road Thank you

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[> Subject: Re: Insurance


Author:
Tommy in Alabama (good choice)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 21/ 09, 3:19am

Lionel: My choice is Progressive which was recommended by my carrier USAA. Haven't had a claim and hope I don't but reasonably priced for the coverage.

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[> Subject: Re: Insurance


Author:
Bob Lawrence
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Date Posted: 01/ 21/ 09, 6:07pm

We use Foremost. Have the fulltimer rider. Cost $700 per year.

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[> Subject: Re: Insurance


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 01/ 22/ 09, 9:49am

There could be significant ranges in price based on location, State, County Etc.Then coverage limits and contents covered, Then payment plan discounts for full payment up-front.

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Subject: floor plan


Author:
Larry Orr
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Date Posted: 01/ 18/ 09, 11:29am

Trying to find out the floor plan name for a 1986 35' FC 250 Cat Wanderlodge. It has the rear queen corner bed. I am trying to sell it and can't find the model number in NADA. 1-800-594-9043. Thank you.

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[> Subject: Re: floor plan


Author:
Dave
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 18/ 09, 11:29am

Larry,
I wonder if that is what N.A.D.A. is calling the 34 1/2 in the 1986 Model? If it is I think what you have is the M-34 1/2-SB (Side Bath).
Other than that it is a mystery to me, the History Page on this Forum does show a 1986 FC-35-SB.

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Subject: Wanderlodge floor plan model name


Author:
Larry Orr
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 17/ 09, 10:48am

I am trying to sell a 1986 Wanderlodge and it is the front engine 250 Cat and 35'. Can you tell me what the floor plan number is called? The NADA does not have this model it seems. Thank you.

Larry Orr
We are a family owned business for over 40 years and our motto is we do whatever is right!
Through Our Integrity Attitude and Teamwork, We Deliver Premium Care. We don't just sell fun, We Guaranty it!
Guaranty RV Super Centers
93636 Hwy 99 So. Junction City, Oregon 97448
1-800-594-9043
Fax 541-998-4297
M-S 8-5 Sunday 10-5

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Subject: Wanderlodge repair


Author:
David lean
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Date Posted: 01/ 16/ 09, 6:10pm

Can anyone recommend a great mechanic in the Wisconsin area ?

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[> Subject: Re: Wanderlodge repair


Author:
Mike Hohnstein
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 16/ 09, 6:10pm

Hello there. Mike Hohhnstein here, I may be able to help you in you Wanderlodge adventure. I have a 83 FC that I restored and have bought and sold a few FC's over the years.
I'm familiar with all the challenges.
Feel free to call @ 414 303 7079 or email mhohnstein@wi.rr.com or web site; AutoTransDesign.com
I'm in Germantown, northwest of Milwaukee.

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Subject: Aquired 1967 WanderLodge


Author:
jasperalden
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 30/ 08, 3:26pm

Hello people, I finally got my hands on this Blue Bird, it's a 1967 with a retrofitted 6V53 Detroit up front. It needs some cosmetic attention. I would like to obtain info on where to find model numbers and stuff like that. Your help will be extremely helpful. I plan for this "ride" to be my retirement home, I'm gonna see America and go to Alaska.

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[> Subject: Re: Aquired 1967 WanderLodge


Author:
gregory (Parts)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 30/ 08, 3:26pm

i have a restored 1968 bird, I am looking for windshield wiper motors have any info you may share? If you have any questions for me please email i will try to advise.
thanks and good luck with the restoration

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Subject: paint codes for '82 brown paint scheme


Author:
John C
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Date Posted: 12/ 30/ 08, 5:34am

Does anyone know the paint codes for the brown paint scheme on a 1982 Lodge? The colors are the root beer metallic brown, cream and some striping colors.

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[> Subject: Re: paint codes for '82 brown paint scheme


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 12/ 30/ 08, 5:34am

Lee Condosta knows about paint. His email is lcondosta@hotmail.com

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Subject: Engine Swap


Author:
Rob Robinson
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Date Posted: 12/ 17/ 08, 7:26am

Randy Dupree and his buddy Woody have taken on a major project. Two days ago they began an engine and tranny transplant on Woody's 1990 Bluebird Wanderlodge SP. The original 300hp Turbo CAT 3208 and ZF tranny are being swapped out for a 300hp Turbo Cummins 8.3 and 6 speed Allison trannny. Work began at 1030am Monday and by 3pm they had the engine and tranny out. It would have been out earlier if they hadn't stopped to argue how best to do it. This project will require serious fabrication including new designs for exhaust, motor mounts, radiator mounting etc to accomodate an engine that is 8 inches longer than the original. Pictures and write-up are available now at

http://www.wanderlodgeownersgroup.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2063

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Subject: ignition


Author:
Richard Carter
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Date Posted: 12/ 14/ 08, 10:30am

Hi all, Rich here from decatur, Il., have a 89WB40' with an ignition problem, don't have the drawing, but looking for the rear igntion box, thought problem was the ignition , that checked out OK, any ideas welcome.

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[> Subject: Re: ignition


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 12/ 10/ 08, 10:55am

More info needed. Does it turn over, is it making any smoke. What is the color of the smoke, mostly black, mostly white? Have you lost your prime, this time of year, leaves can get sucked into the air filter and you'll crap when you see the black smoke and have only about 75 hp of power. Could be your engine cpu too. Keep it simple first. Does it turn over, ug. No smoke no fuel, ug. Lots of smoke no run, can it breath, ug. Has your emergency shutdown device been activated, how obout your A/T anti theft switch on the dash, did a kid flip it. Still suspect the rear ignition switch, a know problem, but only if it turnes over w/o smoke, or runs only if held in the start position. Once you've gone over these basics, then move on to your engine CPU, gulp!

Don

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[> [> Subject: Re: ignition


Author:
Richard Carter
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Date Posted: 12/ 13/ 08, 10:09am

I can start the coach from the back ignition, not the front, going to replace the switch in front--Pollak #31-158-100, nolonger available, can it be one of the continuous solianod going to the starter, from the back ignition everything sounds good

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: ignition


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 14/ 08, 10:30am

The problem may be in that rear switch box. Mine would not start from front and come to find out there was something wrong with back box. You might take that apart and see what might be wrong.

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Subject: Generator


Author:
dctrcarter
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 10/ 08, 10:31am

Just replaced 12.5Kvw in my 1989 WLWB, it wasn't bad to do, just like the book say, any way tryed to start an some rely has kicked in cause it will not start from any of the three generator starter switch. Motoer stared the first time I try it, but shut of real quite, Switch would not work after that first time, thats why I think I've burned out a solanald or kicked rely out. Anyone with ideal on how to get this thing running again.

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[> Subject: Re: Generator


Author:
Don
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 10/ 08, 10:31am

If it runs while you hold the run switch in the start position, it is likely the voltage regulator on the gen head. When you start the genset the relays are activated with battery power, when you release the switch the gen head dc power now holds the relays. If all is well...

The round barrel connectors with many pins can get corroded (use deoxit), sometimes when you couple those connectors, some of the pins are pushed out of the way and end up being real iffy.

Don

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Subject: appliances are dying


Author:
Phil Rogers
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 10/ 08, 10:23am

I have an 88 FC side bath model. Recently something has killed the bedroom tv, the micro/conv oven, and a vcr/dvd player that was hooked to the front tv. Can not find anything else wrong in the coach. Anyone have any ideas as to what could have caused these things to all go down in the same time frame?

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[> Subject: Re: appliances are dying


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 23/ 08, 10:59am

I would check to see if they are all on the same leg, check the front over head Volt meters, Amp meters, and I would then guess it was the main circuit breaker.
Or is the problem on both shore power and generator power???

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[> Subject: Re: appliances are dying


Author:
Don
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 10/ 08, 10:23am

Can't say about the microwave but on my bus all the tv/vcr stuff and icemaker can be ran by the inverter too. That means there is a voltage sinsing relay somewhere. If that is not working, or power is fed through an inverter, some do that, and its' breaker has popped that would explain some of your woes. If you have a larger inverter, the micro would likely be on it too.

Don

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Subject: 81 FC wiring diagram


Author:
Bob
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 8/ 08, 9:05pm

I just bought a 1981 33' FC, I was wondering where or if I can get a wiring diagram or any of the other documentation that orginally came with it. I have the book on the generator, and the chassie operators manual. I have called Blue Bird Coach Works a couple of times and left messages with thier technical services, nobody has returned my calls

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Subject: height of average Blue bird


Author:
Greg Smith
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 25/ 08, 4:51pm

Trying to find the average height of the Blue Bird 35' coach--I don't currently have a Blue Bird but hope to in the future and am planning a car port for my existing motor home and want to make sure it is high enough for a future Blue Bird

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[> Subject: Re: height of average Blue bird


Author:
Bob Lawrence
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Date Posted: 11/ 25/ 08, 4:51pm

Our 84 PT36 is 12ft 3 in. with the roof air.
14 foot door will clear the antenna's also.

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Subject: fresh water pump


Author:
Brian Roth
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 21/ 08, 1:51pm

My fresh water pump in my 1981 35 ft BBWL isn't working and I can't find it. I was told it is under the bed. I am probable looking right at it but can't find it. Can anyone help?

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[> Subject: Re: fresh water pump


Author:
Ernie EKberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 21/ 08, 1:51pm

Brian, your water pump is under the kitchen sink behind the pegboard.

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Subject: Insulating a bird


Author:
Lou
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 20/ 08, 5:47am

I would like to know if their is a way to insulate a 73 blue bird or do you just have to live with out it.I was thinking maybe if I could get the plans I could raise the roof 24inches and widen the sides 12inches any input or advice would be appreciated thank you.

Lou

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[> Subject: Re: Insulating a bird


Author:
Dave
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 17/ 08, 9:41pm

I think those dimensions would be prohibited in just about every state. There is a reason the Wanderlodge WB (wide body) is only 8'6" wide, that is the maximum width by federal law, height is regulated by states but highest I know of is 14" and most are 13'6".

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[> [> Subject: Re: Insulating a bird


Author:
Lou
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 18/ 08, 12:35pm

Dave thank you for your response to my inquiries I measured a couple of semi tractor trailers and found that 8'6" is the norm so this now gives me 3" on each side of the bus the roof stands at 10.5' so I should have plenty of room to go up I am wondering what would be the best insulation to use and were I could obtain constriction plans of this bus.

Lou

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Insulating a bird


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 20/ 08, 5:47am

I believe that sprayed in foam is the insulation for your coach. Now, the generator and dog house can have insulation added

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Subject: Generator


Author:
dctrcarter
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 10/ 08, 4:41pm

Update on the generator, found fuse blown in control panel, 10a- replaced an switches are working again at all three spots, engine is not turning over, getting a clinking noise from engine, replaced the solenold behind the fuel solenold, book don't say what solenold, some call it a continueous solenold. Still looking for help

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[> Subject: Re: Generator


Author:
Michael Davis (No such thing as bad weather; ...just bad gear.)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 24/ 08, 5:32pm

I am looking for parts dealers for Kohler generators, ...the older ones; Model 7.5C61 that is power plant for a 1981 31' FC.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Generator


Author:
Sam
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 28/ 08, 10:04am

Here you go Michael, Engines Service, Inc. located in Milwaukee... ask for Phil...414 353 7340

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Generator


Author:
mike hohnstein
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 10/ 08, 4:41pm

And you may want to tread softly over there. Kinda pricey.
On the other hand, little chance of a smokin' deal on Kohler parts. There are times a new Onan makes sense.
M Hohnstein
Germantown, WI
83FC35rb

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Subject: Suspension dump


Author:
Joe
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 3/ 08, 6:07am

I just purchased a 1982 33 fc. I dumped the suspension last night and this morning it wouldnt come back up. All other air systems seem to be ok, the air pressure came up on the guages but not the bags. Anyone know what I have done wrong??

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[> Subject: Re: Suspension dump


Author:
Sam
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09/ 4/ 08, 6:17am

You've done nothing wrong, probably a stuck or bad valve. Sometimes if you shut the engine off and dump the air and retry to air the bags up it will work. It's been a while since anyone has responded to your question so maybe you have figured it out by now.If you did fix the problem,let us know what you ended up doing,if you don't mind.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Suspension dump


Author:
Henry Pozzuoli
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09/ 6/ 08, 7:31pm

Hi

Mine gives me a hard time now and then when the step dose not retract all the way. I push it in or sometimes work the switch on the dash. Once the step is in -- no air leak. The auxillary tanks will fill.

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[> Subject: Re: Suspension dump


Author:
Dave (Still Lookin)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09/ 15/ 08, 6:23pm

This may seem too simple but while looking at a BB this past weekend as a potential buyer, I learned the system will not air up with the dump valve still in the dump position. Like I said, sounds too simple but if you are not familiar with the systems...

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[> [> Subject: Re: Suspension dump


Author:
Sam
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 09/ 16/ 08, 9:18am

Dave, you're right, I didn't even think of that, maybe Joe doen't know that you have to flip a switch to bring the airbags up. We may never know though, seems like Joe posted a question and then has decided never to return

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[> [> Subject: Re: Suspension dump


Author:
jim riordan
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 1/ 08, 8:49am

You are incorrect about this being a normal condition. With engine running air tanks should air up to operating pressure.

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Suspension dump


Author:
Sam
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 3/ 08, 6:07am

Jim, I'm not wrong, I said you need to flip a switch to have the AIRBAGS air up ( which was Joes problem ), not the AIR TANKS. I know the airtank starts to air up when you start the engine.

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Subject: Manual


Author:
dctrcarter
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 21/ 08, 5:24pm

Looking for a 1989 Wanderlodge Silver Ed. Replaced my side Landing lightd, #4415, 12v, can I get the hole side light some where? The insides are corroded, the metal ring is shoot, plastic holding buld in are broken, I believe I'm going to need alot of parts.

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[> Subject: Re: owners Manual 1979


Author:
Patrick
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 21/ 08, 5:24pm

Anyone have a manual for a 1979?

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Subject: Where is the VIN number


Author:
Bob Neary
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 17/ 08, 5:22pm

I just sold my 1977 33.5' FC BlueBird Wanderlodge. The VIN on my title is: 09433437005. The fellow I sold to is going to license it in Ohio and he cannot find the VIN anywhere on the vehicle. I have had the vehicle licensed in Oregon, Montana, Utah and it came from Washington and has always had the same VIN on the titles. WHERE IS IT? PLEASE!!!!!!!! Bob Neary (435-668-3456)

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[> Subject: Re: Where is the VIN number


Author:
Dave
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 4/ 08, 2:30pm

There should be a plate on the dash just above the engine cover and left of center. Behind the table that sits on top of the engine cover.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Where is the VIN number


Author:
Bob Neary
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 4/ 08, 2:46pm

Thanks for the reply. The plate you are talking about has the Bluebird numbers but not the VIN. There are two plates where you suggest but neither is the VIN. There is a plate on the windshield post passenger side but it also is just the Bluebird number. Bob

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Where is the VIN number


Author:
Dave Ward
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Date Posted: 10/ 17/ 08, 5:22pm

Bob,
I don't know if you ever got an answer to your question or not but I have one now, at least for a 1980. I just bought a 1980 FC31 and found the Vin. on a plate above the left windshield. It only has the last 6 digits of what is on the title but that was enough to satisfy the DMV inspector in AZ where I live.

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Subject: To buy or not to buy


Author:
James Mantonya
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Date Posted: 10/ 9/ 08, 5:23am

Ive talked with a few of you b4 regarding buying a rv to use while on furlough for a year. with the economy as it is now, is it a good idea?
James

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[> Subject: Re: To buy or not to buy


Author:
ernie ekberg
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Date Posted: 10/ 9/ 08, 5:23am

If you have the resources to purchase and maintain the coach, go for it-- life is very short

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Subject: 6-92 starter


Author:
Robert
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Date Posted: 09/ 27/ 08, 9:52pm

I have a 83 PT35 with a 6-92 DD. I am having a problem with the starter and am trying to remove it. I have the bottom two bolts out but I can't feel or see the third bolt which I assume is between the solenoid and the block. Any ideas on how to access this last bolt?

Thanks
Roert
83PT35

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[> Subject: Re: 6-92 starter


Author:
Dave
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Date Posted: 09/ 27/ 08, 9:52pm

Go to a good auto parts store (N.A.P.A.) or a good mechanics tool supplier and ask for a "Starter Wrench". It is a box end wrench made in a "C" shape to reach around the starter.

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Subject: 1993 Blue Bird


Author:
Bob
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Date Posted: 09/ 25/ 08, 6:45pm

I would like to know if the 1993 Blue Birds had an option on cabinets to be white or off white, or do they all have white cabinets?

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Subject: Wanderlust *DR004877*


Author:
Lydia
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Date Posted: 09/ 22/ 08, 6:01pm

Hoping someone may be able to give me more info on motorhome i recently acquired, unfortunately it was involved in a fire-front drivers area is totaled and the only indentifying mark i have been able to find is a metal tag on the first step on the left side - Wanderlust *DR004877*. I have searched all over the internet, and called Wanderlodge several times and to no avail. Can anyone give me any information? It a gas motor Flat-head V-8. Thank you

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[> Subject: Re: Wanderlust *DR004877*


Author:
Dave
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Date Posted: 09/ 22/ 08, 6:01pm

Doesn't sound like a Wanderlodge as any gas engine would have been overhead valve. Have you talked to any mechanic who might be able to identify the engine and approximate age. I think the latest flathead V-8 would be a 1953 Ford.
Maybe if you coulod post a picture or 2 somebody might have an idea.

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Subject: street water intake


Author:
Roland Condon
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Date Posted: 09/ 21/ 08, 10:44am

I have a 1986 PT 40. It is taking as much as a half a day to fill the reserve water tank. I have replaced the fill switch control valve inside the coach under the bed. I still didn't get an increase in water flow. I also put 100 psi of air pressure on the street intake valve, but did not see any improvements. I found where the outside street water fill is connected under the bed, but can't get to it without removing the pressure tank. When I try to run water from the street straight to the faucets, I get a reduced volume of water and pressure. With a half tank of water, I can turn the pump on to draw from the storage tank, and everything works OK. I found a Jabsco replacement regulator and water intake. I don't know how to remove the female hose connector to see if the strainer/filter is plugged. I need some help.

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Subject: water system purge for wintewrizing


Author:
John Stuchlik
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Date Posted: 09/ 10/ 08, 11:19am

I have an 87 40'bbwl that has a purge system for winterizing. The micro valves are leaking and I'm trying to figure out how to eleiminate them altogether, the purge system never really worked. Also looking for advice on winterizing.

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Subject: Electrical/wiring


Author:
Brian Roth
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Date Posted: 09/ 9/ 08, 1:27pm

I have a '81 35 footer with a 3208 cat. I have serious wiring problems both 12 volt and 110 and need a good electrical shop in the L.A./ Orange County area. Any ideas?

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[> Subject: Re: Electrical/wiring


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 09/ 9/ 08, 1:27pm

Hi Brian and others,

I had an '80 and now an '87. Before you have someone look at it besure that you have the AC & DC electrical diagrams for it; best if their blown up and as a working copy that can be written on. Have a list availlable that clearly states where all AC and DC load centers are physically located. Also list where the battery chargers are located, relays, load switches on and on. Go through the manual for them.

A shop could easily spend 1/2 hour looking for the battery chargers, and get sidetracked for much longer. Tackle a single system at a time, and read up on it. If the bus is new to you then thing might be working correctly. For examply, if the A/C units are not working, did you bump one of the switches by your left knee while driving. A/T switch if it won't start and so on.

There are typical problems for both the AC and DC system, a search of this site and others will make them apparent. Touch the various DC connectors when in use, if hot, a repair is needed and so on. Generally, splice points/barrel connectors become poor connectors in the DC systems, wires get chaffed, dirt and grime provide new electrical paths to ground, rubber parts fall apart and fail to insulate or provide physical protection.

People make changes to the original factory install. These can be for the better, or mind bendingly stupid, even unsafe. Just be awary that a few idiots have probably touched your bus before.

Be nosey, if you see a poor termination, see to it that it is not energized and returminate it. If copper is exposed, re-insulate if it is ok, or replace. Remember, it is very simple, one termination at a time. You don't even have to understand the circuit. Get a few descent tools if you do this, don't go cheap here, and use quality parts. You could pay an electrician w/a service van to spend an hour or two to show you the correct ways to do these thing, even tell you what tools to get, or you could figure it out yourself by doing some reading.

Except for things like new battery cables, you probably can't have this thing worked on in an economical fashion. Maybe you can if you have clearly stated what the specific problems are and can walk him through the systems. But don't be surprised if your charged for 8 hours shop time and see little for it; for this reason, some shops won't want to touch it.

I found on my 1980 that anything I took apart, someone had been there before and only put it partly back. But generaly any non-factory electrical work was third rate at best. Usualy these poor installs will stand out.

Again, some problems you don't really need to understand to repair, especially at first. If there is a poor looking connection, replace it and at the least one eventual problem will go away. If a connection gets hot, replace it, magically a light gets brighter, a heater now lights etc.

Hope this helps.

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Subject: Kohler 12.5 kW


Author:
Richard Carter
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Date Posted: 09/ 9/ 08, 7:25am

Have a 1989 40' wlwb with a 12.5 Kohler generator, will the back half burned up an looking for a new one. Please call with information 217-433-0159

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[> Subject: Re: Kohler 12.5 kW


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 09/ 8/ 08, 6:09am

Not exactly sure but i think you are saying that the Kohler 12.5KW generator that is in your Blue Bird burned up and you need to replace it with a new generator, right?

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[> [> Subject: Re: Kohler 12.5 kW


Author:
Richard Carter
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Date Posted: 09/ 9/ 08, 7:25am

Thats right, looking for new or rebuild, an cost

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Subject: Suggestions on Fresh Water Tank replacement


Author:
Michael Putz
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Date Posted: 09/ 5/ 08, 2:53pm

Hello All.. just picked up a 78FC35 and found the fresh water tank bad and water heater shot. I'm thinking about replacing the small water heater under the bed with an electric tankless type, has anyone tried this? If this would work I could replace the original fresh water tank with a larger one as I haven't found a stock replacement anywhere.

Michael

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[> Subject: Re: Suggestions on Fresh Water Tank replacement


Author:
Rich D.
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Date Posted: 06/ 23/ 08, 9:58am

I believe you will find that a tankless electric water heater will be less than satisfactory for RV use. Even if you have a 50 amp 120/240V service available you will be severely limited by the fact that you will have to wire the unit for 120V operation or it will not function when connected to a 30 amp 120V shore connection. At 3.4 BTU's per watt of electricity you just can't get enough heat to heat water on the fly. With a 30 amp hookup devoting just 10 amps for battery charging, microwave, TV, etc. (and NO air conditioning) you leave 20 amps or 2400 watts for heating the water. That's only 8184 BTU's. Not enough to heat more than a trickle. Most tankless heaters are about 60,000 BTU's for a max of 2 GPM. You will need to go with a gas or diesel tankless or a tank type electric.

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[> Subject: Re: Suggestions on Fresh Water Tank replacement


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 07/ 9/ 08, 12:26pm

Hello,

Replacing the freshwater tank is a pretty involved undertaking. Expect having to tear out much of the surrounding structures to get to it. The flooring might be rotted to the consistency of barkdust under that tank. The steel studs holding the old flooring down might be waiting to puncture the tank even more unless removed, their tops rusted away and now present themselves as nails. The rubber sheet that the tank sat on is probably dried out an no longer offers a non-slip surface that it originally did to keep the tank in place. You may find that other structures that alway sat on this flooring have also sufferred structural setback and need attention, shimmed or materials added/replaced.

Don't be surprised if a tank replacement is not redilaly located (INCA made the original and they were not interrested in making a replacement). Or that no local plastic shops want to take on the repair or fabricate a replacement. Your tank is weldable and repairable, go airless, it is low density PE (polyethelene, spelling is something like that). This is something that you can do yourself.

You could go with a simpler tank design, smaller, but if you install your overflow differently, end up with about the same effective capacity. On my 1980, I lost probably 20 gallons on the first steep hill.

If your tank still has original copper tubing to tank fill, this is to rigid and the tank will crack their. Swap this out with flexible plastic tubing. Stock on later busses.

I also beefed up the bed supports, rebuild the fridge shelf, added modern computer fans for the fridge. In general improved upon the factory design, with future access a consideration.

Don

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[> Subject: Re: Suggestions on Fresh Water Tank replacement


Author:
dave powell
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Date Posted: 09/ 5/ 08, 2:53pm

hello michael:
if you haven't found a replacement fresh water tank by now,i have a good used
one from a 1980 35 fc bb my bird had 2 one under each bunk bed.
docpowell34@yahoo.com

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Subject: Pulling of Engine 8V-92


Author:
Rolf Larson (Exited)
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Date Posted: 09/ 4/ 08, 11:02pm

How hard is it to pull the engine *V 92 out of the chassi to do a repair .Is there a rail you can slide the engine out on ???? Thanks I bought this 89 42footer with a bad engine I need to have it pulled to get it to thr my shop ???

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[> Subject: Re: Pulling of Engine 8V-92


Author:
Ed Allison
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Date Posted: 09/ 4/ 08, 11:02pm

Please let us know what you have found out. I plan to pull a 6v92 from a 1985PT 40.(fire damage to cabin) Any info most appreciated

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Subject: 1980 wanderlodge air conditioners


Author:
dave powell (help)
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Date Posted: 09/ 4/ 08, 2:44pm

does anyone know where i can get replacement shrouds for the kaiser 714h
model air conditioners the units work fine but the covers are falling apart?
if not what would be a good replacement?
thanks dave

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Subject: Interior headroom


Author:
Paul
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Date Posted: 09/ 4/ 08, 8:27am

I have recently become interested in the Wanderlodge Motorhomes and have looked for some specification for the interior headroom on these units. I am 6' 2" and have to be careful not to get involved with something that will cause me to stoop whenever I move around. Some feedback is appreciated.

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[> Subject: Re: Interior headroom


Author:
Brian Roth
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Date Posted: 09/ 4/ 08, 8:27am

I'm 6'3' and have been motoring around for 5 years in my '81 with only on e ducking point and that is the bedroom divider door. The frame drops a couple of inches from the ceiling. After the second smack upside the head, you remember!!!

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Subject: Towing capacity


Author:
Mike Lyons
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Date Posted: 08/ 22/ 08, 5:13am

I am looking for a motor home that will tow a trailer weighing about 10,000 lbs. Can anyone recommend which engine trans combination in a Blue Bird will do the job. I'm not looking for speed, but it must be capable of highway speeds. Thank you.

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[> Subject: Re: Towing capacity


Author:
bob maloney (towing cap)
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Date Posted: 08/ 22/ 08, 5:13am

i have a 87 fc 35 my son and i tow our race car in and i am sure it weighs more than 10 with car and spares it cruises at the speed list except mountians it has 300 cat and zf 5 speed hope this helps bob

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Subject: winter water use


Author:
Jim Simko (Help)
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Date Posted: 08/ 18/ 08, 7:02pm

Am considering a buying a very nice 1976 md with the cat 3208. Question is how or can I heat tanks and lines for (Alaska) winter use? The tanks look plastic? Thanks, Jim

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[> Subject: Re: winter water use


Author:
Jim (Hello)
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Date Posted: 08/ 18/ 08, 7:02pm

How difficult is it to heat water lines and holding tanks for winter use in Alaska? Also what av milage can I expect from a non turbo 3208 1977 md 133K actual. Thanks, Jim

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Subject: 84 BB


Author:
Mike
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Date Posted: 08/ 17/ 08, 6:04pm

Just aquired a nearly new 84 35' BB 8,000. Ran perfect until today. Wont start. Engine Warning lite came on. checked all fluid levels. Still won't power starter.

Any suggestions??

Mike Z

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[> Subject: Re: 84 BB


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 08/ 1/ 08, 6:17am

Bluebird 8,000?

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[> [> Subject: Re: 84 BB


Author:
Mike Z
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Date Posted: 08/ 1/ 08, 10:16am

8,000 miles

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[> Subject: Re: 84 BB


Author:
Mike Z
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Date Posted: 08/ 17/ 08, 6:04pm

Got it. Wireing to the A/T broken. Repaired wire works great!!Thanks

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Subject: my 82 fc omly goes 55 mph at 2700 rpms


Author:
Gene Mehr (slow rider)
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Date Posted: 08/ 6/ 08, 4:32pm

I have a 82 fc 3208 nc for about 2 years When I bout it and test drove it, seemed slow 55 mph at 2800 rpms. I ask seller what cruising speed they travelled at and said 60 to 65 mph. We want on a trip this spring 5hrs into trip after pulling a pass tranny shifted into drive and locked up really good and was runing at 2650 rpms 60 mph hour. for the rest of day worked great. ON way home back to old runing speeds. took to trany shop for service and test. Road test with pressure gauge 135 psi at full trottle 125 psi at part throttle. Trans goes into lockup in 3rd 4rth. The shop said looks good. Sugested to rebuild for 3500.00 could not garrentee that my rebuild would make my bird faster than 55mph and i was imagining things when the bus was going 60mph at 2650 rpms. Tire size 11r 22.5 axle ratio 5.29 Motor 3208 na Trany allison mt 643.HELP

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[> Subject: Re: my 82 fc omly goes 55 mph at 2700 rpms


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 08/ 6/ 08, 4:32pm

Governed speed limmit should be 64-ish. Is your tack and and speedometer accurate? A GPS can give you accurate speed as a reality check. Your tack should be steady as you modulate the throttle somewhat, to prove that the transmission is truly in lock-up. Your transmission has a throttle position sensing cable that assists the transmition as far as shift points and I think lock-up; make sure this is in adjustment.

Your 82 is pretty heavy for a 3208NA, under certain load conditions 55 miles per hour will be as good as it gets, but if your at 2700 RPM and locked up, that should be about 61 mph. Consider changing the transmition fluid if you've never done that.

Don

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Subject: Nice bb Plates


Author:
Tommy Rountree
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Date Posted: 07/ 28/ 08, 4:51pm

Where do y'all get those nice bb logo plates some of you have on your bumpers. I would like to have one to place on the opposite side of the FMCA plate on the front and rear of my my coach (1994 PT40)

Tommy Rountree FMCA #31522

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Subject: Towing a Honda Pilot


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 07/ 24/ 08, 3:23am

I have a 2004 Honda Pilot that I am going to be towing with all 4 down on a short trip for the first time in about a week. All I have heard about towing a Pilot is that you need to start the engine and shift it though the gears after 8 hours of towing. Is there anything else that i should know?. Do they rack up miles when being towed? Also I'm hearing that the 2005 Pilot is the latest model that can be towed or is this Honda just being overly cautious because in the past some people would not bother to do the start the engine routine after 8 hours of towing and burn up some gears that need to be lubed by running it though the gears. Thanks

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[> Subject: Re: Towing a Honda Pilot


Author:
Robert Loomas
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Date Posted: 07/ 16/ 08, 2:33pm

Sam Be sure to read your manual I no for my Elemnt it is listed in the book.

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[> Subject: Re: Towing a Honda Pilot


Author:
Bluebird Bob
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Date Posted: 07/ 23/ 08, 5:26pm

We have an 05 Element. The Pilot and Element have the same powertrain.
05 is the last year for Element towing and I would assume Pilot also.
Honda regional office told me reason is people didn't follow directions for running cars thru gears and they were replacing a lot of trannys.
06-08 have same drivetrains, as do Pilot, and if you tow these years and have tranny problems and have tow bars on front, Honda won't cover expenses.
Also on the Element, milage doesn't rack up with the electronic milage meter.
Hope this helps.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Towing a Honda Pilot


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 07/ 24/ 08, 3:23am

Bluebird Bob and Robert,sounds like to me that the 06-08 models can be towed if you do the right thing and run them though the gears. The reason I wanted this info is I will probably end up with a 08 or 09 Pilot in the near future. Thanks for the info guys.

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Subject: battery charger


Author:
Ralph Wilson
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Date Posted: 07/ 9/ 08, 8:14am

I have just purchased an 89-99 BB LX. the former owner ,trying to safe money, has put lead core batteries in. not deep cell, just lead core. he said when he went to charge it he could smell something, and he turned the charger off. then he used a portable charger to charge the batteries when not plugged in. my question is; do i do something to that charger to let it charge lead cell batteries? i realize that they are supposed to be gel cells. until i can get that done ,i am wondering if there is a switch to switch it. it does not seem obvious on that charger.
thanks
Ralph
i have named her "orchid"

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[> Subject: Re: battery charger


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 06/ 6/ 08, 6:07am

Get rid of those batteries now!...there is no switch. the charger is designed to charge deep cell batteries only. the lead cell batteries are not designed to be wired together like the deep cell batteries. The previous owner must have been in over his head to try and save money by doing that. Good luck

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[> Subject: Re: battery charger


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 07/ 9/ 08, 8:14am

If your saying he installed regular lead acid batteries, or better, deep cycle lead acid batteries rather than gell cells, that in and of itself is not the end of the world. A gell cell peek charging voltages are a bit lower than what is normally used on a lead acid battery. It will take you longer to charge your lead acid batteries. You will need to add water which could be a hassle. You need to figure out what is causing that smell etc.

Don

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Subject: cat engines


Author:
jim
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Date Posted: 07/ 8/ 08, 3:19pm

I have been looking a BB and it seems that most of the cat engines have been overhauled, or replaced at low mileage,
can someone tell me if these are undersized, underpowered,
or have just been abused. I hesitate to invest in one if I am going to have to replace the engine soon after I get it. Or should I look for one that has been replaced already and hope it lasts.

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[> Subject: Re: cat engines


Author:
Tim
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Date Posted: 06/ 13/ 08, 10:52am

I have wondered the same thing. I had a mechanic tell me to stay away from the Cat engines and stick to Detroit. I wonder why so many Cats get rebuilt when they should go for several 100K miles.

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[> [> Subject: Re: cat engines


Author:
Bill Garamella
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Date Posted: 06/ 18/ 08, 7:06pm

I am a relative newbie but, I have been following the various Wanderlodge formums for over a year. Based on this, I certain see reference to DDs being rebuilt as often as Cat's. The difference seems to be that the DDs can be overhauled in place (in-frame).

I also see comments about many coachs sitting around too much and some coach owners not maintaining them properly.

For example, I think overhead adjustments (valve lashing) on the 3208 is supposed to be done at 1,200 hours. This reguires removal of the dog house which is inconvinent. I suspect some people don't bother.

I have heard many stories of the 3208s being every bit as dependable as the DDs if they are serviced properly.

NH Bill 1983 FC SB

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[> Subject: Re: cat engines


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 06/ 20/ 08, 10:55am

Yep many motorhome engines are rebuilt with low milege,
This could be good or bad meaning; some owners of old Cat or DD did not take proper care of their machine and one must wander what else was not cared for...????/
Our 3208 purrs like a Cat should and 20 years old.

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[> Subject: Re: cat engines


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 07/ 8/ 08, 4:06am

Harvey's Column:
Among the Bluebirds produced and still on the road, there are a goodly number still with the 3208 in use and in several versions. They range from the 210 hp naturally aspirated 3208 to the turbo charged 300 hp and a couple of versions in between. The engine was originally designed by Caterpillar for use in medium sized work vehicles such as dump trucks, and busses, and other items like road repair machinery. It is often called the ďthrow away engineí because it does not have the piston sleeves larger caterpillars have, and lacking these, if you have engine problems and badly score your piston walls, the engine block may have to be discarded and replaced. The engine can however be successfully overhauled and many hours of service has proven that it really is a tough one! Tough as it is however, the cat 3208 needs tender loving care to be a long performer and to maintain its full power though its service life. Most knowledgeable will quickly tell you that the service life is around 300,000 miles if care is given.

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[> Subject: Re: cat engines


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 07/ 8/ 08, 3:19pm

The simple truth is that 20+ years after new, on many coaches, there is no way of knowing for certain what level of care has occurred over the history of the rig; or if there were years with no use or service. Let alone if something bad has occurred and not corrected. You have to be nosey, check and look at everything, and know that it still could go badly wrong. Even well cared for rigs do brake down. The difference between then and now is that most of us on this forum are not millionares...

Don

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Subject: Questions on Detroit Diesels


Author:
Kent Slater
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Date Posted: 07/ 2/ 08, 4:15pm

I am in the market for a 1980's PT-40 and looking for some input on the DD engines. I see that most of the early PT-40's came equipped with the 6V92 engines verses the later models equipped with the 8V92s I have seen many positive comments on these motors but would appreciate any feedback on: a) how noticeable is the horsepower difference between the two engines, b) how much fuel consumption difference is there, c) what is the engine life expectancy (I see some Birds with engines being overhauled starting at 50-100K. My F-350 is at 300K miles and still strong), d) when inspecting a pre-owned bus, what are some signs that an engine overhaul might be required? Appreciate everyones insight. Kent

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[> Subject: Re: Questions on Detroit Diesels


Author:
Bruce Morris
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 10/ 24/ 06, 11:03pm

Kent, check out the articles on the WOO site (wanderlodge.us). There is a very good article about the Detroit Diesels used in the Wanderlodge.

I think it will probably answer any question you have.

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[> Subject: Re: Questions on Detroit Diesels


Author:
Jim Scoggins
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 12/ 06, 4:35pm

Here is some info I got somewhere. I forget the source.

Quote

"The 92-series Detroits are two-cycle engines.

All current production diesels are 4-cycle.

Detroit stopped production on the 2-strokers due to EPA requirements - and for no other reason. They simply would not meed EPA emissions requirements on or off-road, no matter what they tried - and try mightily they did, with their DDEC and then DDEC-II (electronic control) systems.

Ultimately, they were forced into 4-stroke production.

It is true that modern electronic engines get better fuel efficiency. However, there is a LOT to be said for a basic engine design that goes back to WWII!

I have 6V92s on my boat (two of 'em.) Detroit's basic design was simplicity itself, and ingenious. The supercharger on these engines is necessary; they will not run without them. There is no intake valve system at all. The valves are all for exhaust; as the piston moves down on a power stroke, the exhaust valves open and at the same time the piston uncovers a port, much like a 2-stroke outboard motor, that leads to an airbox that is pressurized by the blower. The clean air forces out the exhaust. When the piston moves back upward the valves close and the ports are covered; compression occurs, and fuel is injected at the appropriate time. Injection is performed by a cam-driven unit injector. The design is extremely simple - ingenious, really. The emissions problem comes from being unable to perfectly scavenge the exhaust. However, these engines tend to run very low EGTs compared to 4-stroke turbodiesels due to the overabundance of air that flows through them on a given power cycle.

The nice thing about Detroits is that there is no high-pressure injection pump or electronics. They will run, once started, so long as they have fuel and compression. You can also replace the entire fuel system (the injectors) for about $100 a hole and the low pressure fuel lift pump for a couple hundred bucks - these are unit injector engines. With under $200 worth of special tools you can keep a Detroit running in tip-top shape for a loooong time, and properly maintained they are great motors. They have a reputation (somewhat earned) as oil leakers, which is due to the fact that Detroit made the blocks so they could be "doubled" - thus, you have 6V92s, 8V92s, 12V92s (two 6V92s end-to-end) and 16V92s (two 8V92s end to end!) This, however, means there are oil ports and such on the ends of the blocks that have plugs in them and thus they tend to leak oil....

The other thing to be aware of is that Detroits are quite inexpensive to get parts for. A cylinder kit, for example, is about $600 - that's the liner, piston, con-rod, rings, etc - the whole shot. One new hole, coming up. So for about $5k in parts you can do a complete kit replacement, and it can be done "in-frame" - without pulling the motor.

Detroits have no glow plugs and "off the shelf" no starting assist. They are ENTIRELY dependant on engine compression to start. They also require (not recommend, REQUIRE) straight weight 40 grade Cx-II oil. Multigrade oils are strictly forbidden due to the high shear strength required by the injector followers - you WILL destroy cams if you run a 15W40 in them, for example, and you'll also get incessant low oil pressure warnings and probably a spun main to go with it. Unlike "modern" diesels its not uncommon (nor a problem) to have oil pressure readings as low as 10psi at idle when fully warmed up! Normal oil pressure at power (1800 rpmish) is in the 45-50psi range though, just like modern engines. What this means is that in cold weather you need STOUT batteries or you will not be able to roll them over at a high enough RPM to get 'em to light. Block heaters are strongly recommended for the winter months. Ether is very dangerous to use on these engines; I know people who have and do, but my recommendation is "never" on a Detroit.

The nemesis on the 92 Series Detroits is overheating. This is a wet liner design with elastomer (O-ring) seals at the top and bottom of the cylinder liner. If you overheat these engines, even just a bit, the liner seals will be compromised. The result will be oil to cooling system leaks, and if not caught very quickly, damage to the mains or even worse, a spun main and damaged crank. Cooling system maintenance is THE big deal on these motors. Keep them running cool and all is well. Let them get hot and you will be rebuilding them.

Also, later versions of these engines in "turbo" trim used aftercoolers, which are under the blower. That needs to be kept clean; getting to it requires removing the blower, which requires disturbing the governor and fuel rack. Its not a tough job, but it is a pain in the butt. Thus, its important to avoid exhaust leaks and use a good air cleaner so that becomes an infrequent problem rather than a frequent one.

Finally, there is the matter of airbox drains. The airbox on a Detroit is where the blower "accumulates" the charge for scavenging and the new combustion cycle. The blower seals, as the blower ages, and turbo seals will eventually leak small amounts of oil, and the compression and then cooling of the air charge causes water to condense. The airbox drains allow this accumulated crud out of the airbox instead of having it sucked into the cylinders where it will cause abnormal wear. On turbo motors there are check valves located at each drain; these must work properly. If they stick open or closed its bad news; many people neglect these service items. They should be pulled and cleaned at every oil change, and if you have motors where Detroit routed them back to the oil pan (they did on some motors, as the EPA had a kitten about the original design which just allowed the slop to go onto the road) you will do your engine a huge favor by removing that and routing them to a "crap can" that you then empty once in a while (at oil change intervals is a good choice.)

I'm very much "up" on the 92-series engines, since I own two and maintain them myself. Set up for reasonable power levels (500HP from an 8V92TA is reasonable) and proper maintenance they provide extraordinarily good service. The 8V89TA CAN be "hot-rodded" to as far as 750HP quite cheaply just by changing injectors and a few other things - don't be tempted, as the service life in that configuration can be as short as 1500 hours or less between overhauls!

The DDEC and DDEC-II versions of these engines replace the mechanical fuel rack with electronic control of the injectors and a bunch of sensors in an attempt to get cleaner and more fuel-efficient operation from them. Its mostly successful, but now you're into the computer-controlled realm and simple mechanical maintenance procedures go out the window.

If I was going to own a Detroit-powered coach, I'd want one with mechanical injection - if I'm gonna buy an electronic engine, I want one of the new design ones, as if I'm gonna get the warts I want the benefits too. With a handful of parts and a few tools on board I can fix these things by the side of the road if necessary so long as I haven't spun a main or something equally catastrophic - something you simply won't be doing with "today's technology".

End Quote

Regards,
Jim Scoggins

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[> [> Subject: Re: Questions on Detroit Diesels


Author:
pedro lopez (? question)
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Date Posted: 06/ 30/ 08, 11:38am

what is the cause that the exhaust alarm to go on ?
on a 12v92 marine engine.

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[> Subject: Re: Questions on Detroit Diesels


Author:
Jim Scoggins
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Date Posted: 11/ 14/ 06, 6:02am

Here is another article I picked up. It is focused toward yacht applications but is sgenerally germane for our usage.

Quote

Diesel

Comparing Diesel Types

Two Cycle, Four Cycle
by David Pascoe

Check out the Internet forums and you will see these questions asked over and over again: What is the best diesel engine choice for a boat. In a way, that is sort of like asking what woman you should marry, since the question is posed without any parameters. Or at least parameters that questioners are capable of defining.
Currently, there are three major diesel competitors, Detroit Diesel, Caterpillar and Cummins. Engines like M.A.N., MTU, Yanmar and Volvo have a much smaller market. Moreover, the differences between the engines offered by the three companies could hardly be much more different. Experience has shown that, like most manufacturers, they make some good ones, and occasionally some not-so-good ones. In terms of overall reliability, Iíd rate them about the same -- all parameters being equal. Of course, that is an utterly useless appraisal. There are a huge number of variables that come into play, that can make engine selection something that requires very careful consideration whether you're buying a new or used boat. So, Iím going to explain in detail why this is a difficult question to answer, and why it is that choosing a particular manufacturer shouldn't be the only decision criteria. An awful lot depends on how you are going to run your boat, and the kind of performance and service life you expect.

WEB INFO UPDATE It's taken them awhile, but most engine companies now have engine technical data posted on their web sites. Last year, most did not, so this is good news for buyers wanting to do technical comparisons.

There are two basic engine types, two cycle and four cycle. The former is represented by Detroit Diesel alone, while the later by both Cummins and Caterpillar and virtually all the others, for only DD makes two cycle engines. The differences between the two types is very substantial, with each having their pros and cons depending on the application of the engine.

Before I get into this, let me first dispel some myths about diesels. These engines developed their reputation for reliability and very long engine life beginning over a hundred years ago, a reputation that, for the most part, no longer holds. That reputation was based up very unsophisticated, slow turning, low horsepower engines. Except for sailboat auxiliaries, you wonít find many such engines in existence today. Today we have a "need for speed," and everyone wants to go fast. Going fast is what negates the virtues of those engines from a by-gone era.

The modern diesel is very sophisticated, complex, lighter weight and very powerful. Hence, their life span is often no more than that of a gas engine, often times even less. To say that they are delicate is not an overstatement. There is a very simple rule today that the more power you try to squeeze out of a given engine block, the less service life it will give. People can argue all they want to, but that is a fact.

Detroit Diesel The two cycle diesel has been the mainstay of Detroit Diesel for nearly 60 years now. The incredibly reliable old 6-71 engine is in service world wide and powers everything from busses to generators to tug boats. Its service record is unparalleled.

Two cycle and four cycle engines each have their pros and cons. The operating system of the two cycle is radically different than the four cycle, which operates more like an ordinary gas engine without spark plugs. The Detroit Diesel engine is unique and is not offered by any other manufacturer. This engine utilizes a moderately heavy cylinder block that is quite complex in its casting. Compared to a MTU or Volvo, it is light; compared with Yanmar or Cummins, it is heavy. It is a long stroke, smaller bore engine than most four cycles. The Cat 3208, for example, has a fairly short stroke, as do the Cummins V-8ís. This gives the Detroit engine considerably higher torque at lower speed ranges, but limits its top RPM range: the longer the stroke, the slower the engine has to run. Thus, higher power at lower speeds.






Credit: Detroit Diesel Allison

The Detroit injector system is just one of the major differences over four cycle engines.The two stroke cycle.




The push rods of these engines are also about 33% longer than most 4 stroke engines, creating more rotational mass and therefore more rotational torque. Altogether, the engine delivers more power from less displacement, lower speed, but higher casting weights, while fuel consumptions remain approximately the same.

The typical V-8 Detroit engine today has more than double the number of internal parts as say a Caterpillar V-8, making it a more sophisticated, but remarkably not more costly engine. Why not more expensive with all those extra parts? Well, there is a very good reason for that, which is that DD is the largest diesel engine manufacturer in the world. They sell a lot of parts, and higher production means lower cost. Typically, DD engine parts are considerably less expensive than Caterpillar parts. But thereís more to it than that. Most of all 71 and 92 series (can) use interchangeable parts. This interchangeability also has a tremendous effect on parts costs. It also means that world wide, there are more mechanics trained to work on DD than any other. Stocking costs are also much lower because of the interchangeability.

The downside to this engine is that these numerous parts do create something of a more serious wear problem over the four cycle with fewer and less delicate parts. This situation becomes magnified with poor maintenance, and therefore they do require more care, though not necessarily at significantly higher cost.

How It Works The DD four exhaust valves and a blower, compared with a four cycle with only two valves and no blower. Each cylinder liner has a row of 14 oblong holes near the bottom. After the compression stroke, the piston travels downward, past this row of holes. This is similar to the way an outboard motor works. Except that once the piston goes below the holes, called scavenging ports, the blower forces air in at high pressure from what is called the air gallery cast into the block. Thus, the DD has not only water jackets, but air galleries cast in the block as well. This one thing that makes DD blocks more complex.

The pressurized air then "scavenges" or forces out the burned gasses up through the four exhaust valves. This enables the engine to make only two revolutions to complete the combustion cycle rather that the four required of the four cycle engine, which relies on a second upward stroke of the piston to exhaust the cylinder of burned gas. In theory, this makes the engine more efficient. In reality, all the friction caused by all those extra moving parts eats up some of the efficiency gain. Why? Because of the drag created by the non-compression stroke, and the power to drive the blower and extra cam shaft. Even so, there is a major power gain through this design.

So the DD engine is left with certain advantages such as more immediate power delivery and higher power at lower speeds. This is one of the things that has made these engines more popular with the commercial boat industry. The four cycle engine has to throttle up to a higher RPM before a similar amount of power is delivered to the propeller.

The fuel systems are both very different and yet similar. The DD has no fuel injector pump, but rather each injector is itís own fuel pump. An injection pump is sort of like a small engine with 6 or 8 cylinders and pistons that pump and supply fuel to the injector which, in a four cycle engine is nothing more than a spray nozzle like on the end of a garden hose, albeit a bit more refined. On a DD engine, each injector is operated by the dual underhead camshafts that are immediately below the head.

A Detroit Diesel uses its fuel as part of the cooling system to the cylinder head and injector. It returns a LOT of fuel back to the tank, and it is very hot. Thus, a DD has a fuel oil cooler, whereas the four cycle does not. With Detroits, you have to worry about the state of fuel return to the tank when, for example, you decide to run off of one tank only. Detroits for the most part are self-priming fuel system. Woe to the captain who gets air into the fuel system of a four cycle engine system. You got to get that air out, or it will not run.

Now here is where the DD gets all those extra working parts. Each cam shaft has three lobes per cylinder. Two to run two pairs of exhaust valves and one to run the injector. All are actuated by roller followers placed in the head with a very short "pushrod." This actuates the injector plunger that pressurizes the fuel and squirts the vaporized fuel in the cylinder.

Unlike a 4 cycle, the fuel metering is all controlled by the injector and a throttle control lever on the injector actuated by the "rack," just a long bar that controls all injectors simultaneously. "Adjusting the rack" is how you tune a DD fuel system. If the rack is not adjusted properly, the injectors will get either too much or too little fuel and the owner wonít have a happy face. Between the two engine types, the injectors are the main show on DD engines; the fuel pump is the big deal on 4 cycle engines -- i.e. the gizmo that eats the most greenbacks. On a DD individual injectors can go bad without jeopardizing the whole system. With a 4 cycle engine, when the fuel injection pump goes, its lights out. Two advantages of the DD fuel system is that it is considerably less sensitive to fouled fuel, plus the injectors are self-priming so that you donít suffer the priming problems often encountered with 4 cycle engines. While the injection pump system is more reliable and requires less frequent service, the DD injectors are more efficient.

The blower and turbocharger aspiration system constitutes another major difference. The four cycle engine is aspirated through intake valves next to the exhaust valves; the DD engine has only exhaust valves, but twice as many of them. The DD cylinder heads are very complex and expensive to replace if one gets damaged, such as cracking from overheating. All those extra working parts make for more potential trouble, but also increase efficiency considerably. This why, pound for pound, DD squeezes quite a bit more horsepower out of their engines than CAT does.

Cummins Model QSM11 Marine Engine Crankshaft power (high output) 474 kW 635 hp
Crankshaft power (intermittent) 433 kW 580 bhp

Crankshaft power (high output) 399 kW 535 bhp

Rated speed 2300 rpm 2300 rpm

Bore x stroke 125x147 mm 4.92x5.79 in

Displacement 10.8 liters 661 cu in

Number of cylinders Inline 6

Engine weight w/o gear 1125 kg 2,475 lb

Fuel consumption Liters per hour 124.9

Gallons per hour 33.0

Compare the specs of this Cummins engine with that of a Detroit of comparable power rating. Isn't it interesting that this new Cummins engine only turns 2300 rpm? Note that the Detroit weight includes gear, while Cummins does not, typically another 400-600 lbs depending on engine size.
Other significant differences include the large auxiliary drive housings on the Detroit. As mentioned, these are basically commercial engines, and the drive housing is designed to drive other components such as pumps, air compressors, even alternators through a gear drive rather than the belts you get on a four cycle. This is the large housing you find on the back of the engine and is full of gears. This becomes significant in larger yachts where you may want to drive a powerful hydraulic pump for things like stabilizers and bow thrusters. With a four cycle, you have to go through a lot of rigmarole setting up belt drive pumps, whereas there is a ready made pump to do whatever job you need from your Detroit. Need an air compressor? No problem, just buy it and bolt it on. No muss, no fuss.

Turbochargers and Blowers Turbochargers are similar to jet engines. It has two sides and two turbines. The exhaust side has the turbine immediately after the exhaust manifold and uses the rushing hot exhaust gasses to turn it. The other turbine is attached to the same shaft, and pulls fresh air in and forces it into the air induction system. Because the turbo gets hot, it also heats up the air on the intake side, which is why you have to have an intercooler to reduce this air temperature. Remember, we said that the higher the intake air temperature, the lower the engine performance? Ergo, when youíre intercooler gets dirty, you loose engine performance.

You might wonder why, if the Jimmy already has a blower (which I have described as doing the same job of evacuating exhaust gases), why do they put turbochargers on it? Well, simply because the blower can only blow so much air. The turbo will increase the air flow proportional to engine speed. It simply forces yet more air to the blower, thereby increasing the speed and completeness with which the exhaust gasses are evacuated from the cylinder. They call it "boost," and it doesn't kick in until the turbo pressure exceeds the blower pressure.

The turbocharger simply adds more air pressure to the "Jimmy" blowers. You know, those big things sticking up on the top of the old time drag racers made famous by the likes of "Big Daddy" Don Garlits, and how they took an ordinary car engine and squeezed 1,000 hp or more out of it for about 15 seconds. Thatís all the longer the engine would last! What a diesel blower and turbo does is to evacuate the exhaust gasses faster and more completely. And it also greatly reduces the internal cylinder temperature. A diesel has no spark plugs. The fuel is ignited by compressing it until it explodes under extreme pressure, about 550 psi. It explodes because the pressure causes the fuel and air to heat up. This heat has to be gotten rid of or we have a big problem on our hands. The blower is a big help.

You can probably appreciate that if the cylinder is not cooled down before the next compression cycle, the temperature inside the cylinder is going to be rather hot. Thus, when the piston comes up and starts compressing the atomized fuel, it is going to exploded SOONER because the cylinder air temperature is higher. It's a matter of timing. This is bad news because the detonation is going to occur a few nanoseconds before the piston reaches top dead center. This throws the engine timing off and can result in acute loss of power and other serious problems. Like connecting rods through the block.

Now, this can happen in both 2 and 4 cycle engines, so now you know why maintaining the intercooler and heat exchanger in tip top shape is of extreme importance to your engineís health and longevity. Neglect it and Big Bill is going to knock on your door sooner rather than later.

The bottom line is that the Detroit Diesel gets more power from a slower turning engine with fairly light weight engine castings (by yesteryear's standards). Keeping the engine speed down is very important to longevity.

The four cycle engine doesnít have this abundance of extra parts. It is a simpler and more basic engine. You might think, aha, thatís great, simplicity is good. Yes, it is, as long as you donít want to go fast. Problem is, you do, and so now we are going to subvert the benefits of simplicity to achieve more power. This is done by pumping in more fuel and turning the engine faster, usually around 400 to 600 RPM faster than a DD. That may not seem like much, but to a diesel itís around 25% faster. Now all your benefits of simplicity and long life have just gone down the drain because you want to go fast.

Now weíre back to square one with the Cat and DD engines evening out on the overall scorecard except for one thing. All things being equal, engine longevity between the two averages out to about the same. But you get quite a bit more power out of the DD than the Cat for each cubic inch of displacement.

Probably the most outstanding feature of the DD engine is its versatility in terms of power ratings. Any DD engine can be run at a broad range of power ratings by making relatively minor changes at fairly low cost. This is not possible with four cycle engines, and is one of the things that has endeared DD to the marine industry. For about $1200 you can just change injector size and change the power rating, particularly downward if you want to depower. Increasing injector size, of course, is going to reduce engine life. Again, this is possible because injectors are self-metering and a wide range of sizes is readily available.

Caterpillar DD engines tend to be large due to the long stroke, complex engine block and more components. You wonít find many 6V71ís or 92ís in the 30-40 foot range boats because itís a hard fit. The short stroke Cat 3208 engine is one of the most popular in this size boat because it has a very low profile: it fits, allowing boat designers to create low profile boats with adequate headroom.. Given your druthers, you might take a pair of 500 hp 6V92ís over a pair of 400 hp Cats any day. Problem is, on smaller boats, you have to give up some interior space to make the DDís fit. Mama donít like that, so you end up with lower power. Such is life in the fast lane.

So why canít you get a higher powered Cat? Well, they tried running the 3208 up to 475 hp and that smaller block just couldnít handle it. Best it can do is 425, and even then they had to lower the compression and ended up with a smokier engine. This engine does best at 375 hp.

Yes, Cat does make the long stroke, inline series engine but now you are back to the same old high profile engine again. To make matters worse, with say the 3176 rated at 500 hp, you now have a bigger, heavier engine running at a higher speed and more fuel to give the same power as the little 6V92 does with the same space requirement. So which would you want? Pick Ďem.

The Cat 3208 is a good, reliable engine that, like all engines, will give you good, reliable service as long as theyíre not souped up. They will do very well at pushing boats in the 32-38í range, and do fairly well at pushing larger boats that have flatter bottoms and running at lower speeds, say around 20-22 kts. Where they will fall down is in a larger boat with a deeper vee, simply because of the inefficiency of the hull. Using a pair of 425 hp 3208ís to move a heavier, deeper vee 40 footer is not a good idea. At this point the boat will need the heavier 3176 engine or DDís.

These tables show the relative weights and power ratings of MAN and Detroit Diesel. Note that in most cases, the Detroit is a heavier engine.
Now take a look at the Caterpillar 3208 specs in the table below. Notice that it's displacement is is 636 cu. in., more than 100 cu. in. greater than the 6V92 at 522 cid. So why is it that they're squeezing 550 hp out of the Detroit, and only 435 hp out of the Cat? Why can't they get 600 hp out of it? Here is where my 1:1 displacement/hp rule takes a dump. Why? Well, again, compare engine weights. The Cat is a light weight engine at only 1740 lbs WITH GEAR. It does not have replaceable liners and is a throwaway block. Plus it runs 500 rpm faster. That very light weight block cannot handle either the increased stress and heat increases that more power puts out.

Where's the beef? Well, it's not there. If you could see a 3208 and 6V92 sitting together side-by-side on the floor, you'd be blown away at the difference in overall size. The smaller displacement 6-V92 is ONE THIRD physically larger than the Cat. Beef is one of the key ingredients to higher power and reliability. The amount if iron contained in the block makes a difference. This is a problem we have with all automotive conversions. Lightness is fine for automotive use because it doesn't need those high powers, whereas in marine engines, we do. The Cat big block engines have always performed better because these were built for industrial applications. It's been much the same for Detroit. Except for the 6-71 in busses, their engines are rarely used in on-road applications. Heavy equipment, yes, trucks, no. Cat and Cummins have the automotive market, which they serve well.

The bottom line is that the 6V92 and the two cycle engines are substantially more efficient engines, but you pay a premium in weight and the space to mount it in. In terms of power out equivalency, the 3208 and 6-71 are similar, though the edge for endurance goes to the 6-71. Both engines in their non-turbocharged versions will darn near last forever with good care.

The Effects of Turbocharging A four cycle diesel relies upon piston suction to draw air into the cylinder. This creates a lot of drag, but is much better at dissipating heat. For all performance engines, getting rid of the heat of combustion is a major problem. When a turbocharger is added, it eliminates this suction and forces air into the cylinder at a much faster rate, as well as being under pressure. Problem is, that turbo air is hotter, so it results in a temperature increase, even with intercoolers. Even though the turbo creates extra drag itself, it also allows each cylinder to get a large shot of fuel. This results in a disproportionately large increase in power, which is why they do it.

But you've already figured the downside, haven't you? Yep, more fuel results in even more heat. Increased heat AND power is a double whammy that causes a net reduction in engine life. Never mind the effects of just increased strain alone. This is no different than the human body. You can work it just so hard before it begins to break down. Another effect is that the higher the power output, the more critical maintenance becomes. The neglected maintenance that you could get away with on the lower power engine won't be tolerated at all with the high performance version. Minor injuries will put these babies out of the game fast. That old 6-71 at 250 hp that would chug along for decades with total neglect, will fly to pieces at 435 hp with a minor cooling system problem. Why? Because it was never designed to dissipate those kind of heat build ups. With that kind of power, there is no such thing as a minor overheat. Every little deficiency becomes a major fault.

Which to Choose? For smaller boats -- under 15,000 lbs or so, it probably doesn't make that much difference because the available choices are so few. The one critical feature should be the hp/displacement ratio of not more than 110% or so.

For boats at 20k lbs and above, pushing those weights without excessive engine strain becomes a major issue. Here's where the big, beefy blocks really stand out. I write all this stuff so you can understand the why's and wherefores of making good choices. There's nothing like knowing the reason why you should spend more money for something. There are lots of places you can cut corners, but engine selection shouldn't be one of them.

The Cat 3208 remains a good choice for medium size boats where high speed is not the issue. These engines definitely do better in lighter boats at lower speeds. They're a lot less good for pushing one of those 40k Taiwan trawler types at 21 knots.

The other little Cats? Un, uh. Someone's gotta prove to me that we're not going to be seeing any more of them yanked out and sitting on the docks. I just tripped over a less than one year old 3116 engine yesterday.

For high speed in a moderately light, express type mid sized boat, the Cummins seem to be performing well. As I've said, they've not been around long enough to know for sure.

For your larger boats, and very heavy smaller boats (e.g. small Hats, Berties, etc.) I still think the Detroits are the best way to go, both from a cost and reliability stand point. Here your choices expand to MAN and MTU, but when considering both initial cost and repair and maintenance costs, these engines are enormously expensive. Nor are these German engines quite as reliable as many people are led to believe. These engines have had their fair share of design faults also.

Engines such as the 12V92 have not compared as favorably as the 12V71, though the later is capable of less power. Former has had considerably less average engine life than expected between overhauls. In part, that has had to do with the hot rod applications they're subjected to, so it's hard to know how they fare in something other than hotrods. This basic engine was initially offered at 850 hp @2300 but is now up to 1110 hp. The 1040 hp versions have done fairly well when properly matched to load. 2000 hrs between overhauls is not uncommon.

The 6-71, 6V92 and 8V92 perform well at reasonable horsepowers. For overall longevity, I'd opt for the 6-71 in any boat where the power range is applicable. Reliability is without parallel. In the hot rod class, I'll take the 6V92 at less than 550 hp while being prepared to follow the maintenance guide religiously. This is a spectacular little power plant for those that like to push the 30 knot envelope in a mid size boat.

The 8V92 would fall into the same category, except that the modifiers like JT, S&S and Covington try to squeeze too much power out of these blocks. A good deal at 735 hp and below. A poor choice above that.

For lightweight or smaller hotrods, the 3208 will do fine, with the same caveat as above.

When money is not the issue, by all means play around with the German diesels. Just beware that you're not going to get them fixed for the price of a Detroit. As with Mercedes (to whom they are related), those people aren't shy about pricing. They stick it to you good.

What about the others? Well, another year has gone by and all we've seen are the Big Three. It's always been the case that big diesels are too expensive to fool around with. The best choices are those with the best track records. Especially when buying used boats where the warranty is signed by your own name.

Load Matching The criteria discussed above are not the only factors. Of late we have been running into a lot of propellering problems. If the builder puts the right size on, the owner starts fooling around with exotic propellers trying to make it go faster. Engines become overloaded and accelerated wear takes over. When this happens, all bets are off. Other factors include badly balanced boats which don't trim out properly, resulting in engine overloads.

Repowering We get a lot of questions about how to go about repowering a boat. Particularly the conversion of gas to diesel. Let me just say that to do this properly requires a degree in higher education, particularly engineering and naval architecture. If you think you can just slap a pair of engines in there with only a few, inexpensive modifications, you are mistaken. If you're not willing to pay the cost of an expert engineer, then you're on your own. But be prepared for some very major and expensive disappointments.

Current Trends In recent years there has been much talk about light weight, higher power diesel engines. We all thought that Yanmar was going to lead the way with their little truck engines with all those aluminum parts hung on them. This hasnít happened, and itís a good thing, too. A few years ago, Caterpillar introduced their 3100 series of new 6 cylinder engines. These are moderate weight engines with as low profile as one can get with an inline six.

Yet nearly every one of this line has experienced severe cylinder head design problems with these souped up applications. Cummins, with a similar type engine, has been grabbing their market with their record of better reliability, at horsepowers considerably beyond what I would have thought they could get away with. However, even the Cummins late models havenít been in use long enough that weíve had time to get a handle on general service life.

The problem with diesels, you see, is that unless an engine has design problems, it takes about 15 years before we get a handle on longevity. Only a surveyor gets to see a hundred or more set of engines per year closely, and in actual service. The design problems we learn about in a hurry, as boat owners start making a bit of a fuss when engines crap out early. On the other hand, if we had judged the 6V92 by its first few years in service (it had beaucoup problems), it wouldnít exist today. Unfortunately for Caterpillar, theyíve allowed their cylinder head problems to hang around too long. Whatever one might have to complain about Detroit Diesel, at least whether it be GM or the Penske group, theyíve managed to keep their customers happy. Their response to problems has been excellent over the years.

Fortunately, ideas about light weight, hot rod diesels are dying a natural death. Itís hard enough making the moderate weight engines last a reasonably long time. Moreover, the reduction in weight is not needed, as people are discovering that ultralight boats make for unpleasant experiences on rough water.

Thereís just no getting away from the fact that if you want reliability and economy, keep it heavy, and keep it slow, and around 1:1 on the hp/displacement ratio.

And one more thing. Don't power your boat on the margin. Give it a bit more power than you think it needs. That way engines don't strain as much to give you the speed you want. You're going to pay for what you need one way or the other, be it on the front end, or on the back.

Posted December 11, 1999

end quote

Regards,
Jim Scoggins

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[> Subject: Re: Questions on Detroit Diesels


Author:
Don
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 07/ 2/ 08, 4:15pm

Hello,

I have an 8V92 450HP (California Emissions -vs- 475). I drove an 6V92, same size of bus that I thought was a real dog; I also though it did need an overhall...very high mileage and lots of white/blue smoke that got better but would not go away. Both busses have/had a fuel delay mechanism to slow off the line acceleration; don't let that shock you. But the 6V92 would slow at a rumor a hill, maybe worse than a 3208NA.

Any engine that sits with the same coolant in it for 3 to 6 years for how many times(?), is due for some costly work. Figure the same if there have been no oil changes, filters, rust, and on and on.

Depending on how much driving you'll be doing, unless your concerned w/catastrophic failure (and you have reason to believe that may be the case: clank, clank, clank..., fluids in where they ought not be and so on), for many of us a bit of smoke is not that big of a deal considering how few hours we actually log in a year.

Many DD engines get rebuilt as a sort of insurance. So long as fuel economy is not insane, or you can't get over the hills; generally these will be hard to start, lots of smoke, blue rings, white injectors. A DD due for overhall w/a decent past can last the RVist a long time.

Keep an eye on rubber. It gets old and brittle.

Regards, Don

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Subject: Windshield Replacement (Driver Side)


Author:
willie green
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 07/ 1/ 08, 12:06pm


I need to replace the Windshield (Driver Side) on my 82FC-33 and would appreciate any info in locating a replacement...

Thanks, Willie

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[> Subject: Re: Windshield Replacement (Driver Side)


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 07/ 1/ 08, 10:34am

Had passenger side replaced at BB Fort Valley last Fall.
Only about one hour repair.
Contact your local School Bus garage , they will know a local installer.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Windshield Replacement (Driver Side)


Author:
willie green
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 07/ 1/ 08, 12:06pm


THANKS!!

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Subject: Light ballast


Author:
Don Meyer
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 25/ 08, 8:47am

Hello all,

I have a 1986 PT38. The 12 volt light ballast for one of the bedroom lights went out. I'm having a hard time finding a 12 volt ballast that will produce the 56 watts (or more) required for the 6' flourecent tube. There is no usable part number on the old ballast and BB was no help. Anyone out there know where to find the proper ballast?
Thanks, Don Meyer 561-703-7907

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[> Subject: Re: Light ballast


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 23/ 08, 7:43pm

Stephen Birtles has the ballasts

http://www.dupreeproducts.com/

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[> [> Subject: Re: Light ballast


Author:
Don Meyer
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 24/ 08, 2:52pm

Thanks for the info. I called Steve and he does not have the right ballast. It's turning our to be a very dificult part to find. From what the "experts" are telling me, it has to be the proper ballast or it will not work. It must be 50 watts or more output (powers a 56 watt bulb) and obviously has to be 12 volt input. The bulb it powers is part # F72T12. single tube, one pin on each end.
Anyone with ideas, please let me know.

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Light ballast


Author:
Rich D.
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 25/ 08, 8:47am

Expensive but they have it here:

http://www.goodmart.com/products/541349.htm

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Subject: Light ballast


Author:
Don Meyer
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 24/ 08, 6:30pm

Hello all,

I have a 1986 PT38. The 12 volt light ballast for one of the bedroom lights went out. I'm having a hard time finding a 12 volt ballast that will produce the 56 watts (or more) required for the 6" flourecent tube. There is no usable part number on the old ballast and BB was no help. Anyone out there know where to find the proper ballast?
Thanks, Don Meyer 561-703-7907

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[> Subject: Re: Light ballast


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 24/ 08, 6:30pm

It may be time to change to a more available ballast and two pin light bulb, If it is the long bulb, try two shorter bulbs & ballasts. The light tube sockets are available at Lowes / HomeDepot. Tie the two pins together.

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Subject: Jim Scoggins


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 06/ 9/ 08, 4:27pm

Dan Sunderland just posted that our friend and fellow Bluebird owner, Jim Scoggins passed away today. Details will be forthcoming. A great friend and a great loss. Ernie

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[> Subject: Re: Jim Scoggins


Author:
Ernie
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Date Posted: 06/ 8/ 08, 5:18pm

If anyone has info about funeral arrangements, please post here. Thanks, Ernie

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[> [> Subject: Re: Jim Scoggins


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 06/ 9/ 08, 4:27pm

Jim is at Mullins & Thompson Funeral home, 186 Shelton Shop rd, Stafford, Va 22556 540-659-7690
The funeral will be at Quantico Base Chapel, Fri June 13 at 1pm.

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Subject: Alan Jackson


Author:
Mr Borr
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Date Posted: 06/ 8/ 08, 12:47pm

After working on my parents 1980 wanderlodge, i found a signature in the "builders book" of an Alan Jackson. Does anyone know if THE Alan Jackson ever worked at the factory?

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Subject: help w/ Wanderlodge valuation


Author:
Howard
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 6/ 08, 6:07pm

I am trying to find valuaton for 1982 wanderlodges.
I have looked in bluebook but canot seem to locate the 1982 FC35 or PT40 values.
can anyone help?
thanks, howard

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[> Subject: Re: help w/ Wanderlodge valuation


Author:
Ed Wimberley
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 6/ 08, 6:07pm

I purchased a 1982 35ft pusher with tag axle 6v/92 Detroit
in March 2008 Was listed 40k by owner offered 35k settled on 35.5k. Very pleased with Bird feel it was good price.
I guess the value truly depends on condition and preference.
Yes we have some issues with unit but nothing abnormal or unexpected with an older Bird.
Very pleased with road driveability already driven about 1500 miles

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Subject: 85 PT36 6V92TA oil pressure indicator sender


Author:
Robin (help)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 06/ 1/ 08, 11:16am

I have an eratic/intermittent oil pressure sender unit.
Before I climb in there can anyone tell me
1. Exactly where the sender is located on this engine
2. The mfg & possibly the mfg part #, or are these senders just generic.

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Subject: 1979 FC-35


Author:
Rae
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 30/ 08, 4:55pm

Hello!

Am I glad I found you.... Until two days ago, I wouldn't have given a Bird a second look and now that's all I want (I blame the cockpit). Being in Canada and not wanting to go through the hassle of importing from the US, I expected to search for my Bird for a long time. Then, I found a 1979 Wanderlodge located in Windsor, Ontario. The owner sent me the following specs:

1979 Blue Bird FC-35 Wanderlodge motorhome with 210 hp Cat 3208 diesel, 4-speed Allison automatic transmission, King cruise control, Telma electromagnetic drive-line retarder, 12.5 kw diesel generator. EXTERIOR: brown over cream base, 20 ft. Zip Dee curb-side awning, street-side window awnings for living room and bedroom, 2 docking lights per side. INTERIOR: dark wood-grain laminate cabinetry, cream quilted vinyl ceiling and walls, light oak laminate flooring, all furniture re-upholstered, new curtains and mini-blinds. LIVING ROOM: twin fabric sleeper sofas, overhead storage cabinets, storage cabinets adjacent to sofas, half high closet/pantry/TV stand with hook-ups for antenna and cable TV. BATHROOM: private side bath with cultured marble sink/vanity top, Thetford Aqua-Magic toilet, fibreglas shower stall, linoleum floor. KITCHEN: laminate countertop and stove cover, stainless steel double sink with separate drinking water spigot, food center, Dometic 2-door 110V/propane automatic refrigerator with wood-grain door panels, 110V ice maker, 4 burner propane cook-top and oven, microwave oven, half-height slide-out can pantry, cushioned dinette booth. BEDROOM: rear side bed (street-side), vanity, stool, and drawers (curb side), carpeting, overhead storage cabinets (sides & rear), under-bed storage drawer, TV connection, accordion privacy door, 2 full-length closets, 1 half-length closet. GENERAL: this coach has most Blue Bird options Ė 3 roof A/Cís, 3 propane furnaces, 110V electric heater in bathroom, power vents in bath and kitchen, indirect lighting and miniature spots throughout, 3 station intercom system, central vacuum (new motor), double-cartridge water purifier under kitchen sink, HWH leveling jacks, roof storage pod, spot light, air horns, new batteries, new front tires, spare tire, plus 3 vinyl wheel covers and an entire coach cover.

Does this sound like a Bird that would be worth driving 18 hours (round trip) to see? What questions could I ask the current owner prior to committing to a viewing?

He sent some pictures, but they don't really tell me that much, other than to confirm that the '70's was seriously lacking in decorating taste. :-D They did, at least, install nice laminate flooring throughout the coach.

He's asking 29,500$. NADA puts the high-end value at 15,000$. Which is closer to reality?

Anyone know someone in the Windsor area (including Detroit, Michigan) whom I could reasonably trust to perform a mechanical inspection on this Bird?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!

Cheers,

Rae

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Subject: Fuel gauge wiring diagram


Author:
Dale Taylor
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 26/ 08, 1:35pm

I was wondering if someone knew where I could get a copy of a wiring diagram for my fuel gauge of my 78' Bluebird?

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Subject: very interested first time buyer (Canada)


Author:
Ray Hackney
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 21/ 08, 8:16am

We are very interested in a 36to 40 foot pusher. we think a 1986 to 1990 is about what we are looking for.we were wondering if the resale on a bird this old would be a problem in say five years. We would like to find one that would not cost a pile of cash immediatley after purchase.

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[> Subject: Re: very interested first time buyer (Canada)


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 21/ 08, 8:16am

A 10 to 15 year old BB is probably depreciated down to its lower valve, its' value is based on condition, condition, condition, past maintenance and what upgrades have been already performed. This is a much better value than any other plastic Motorhome at a much later model year.

So, My "guess" is that it will be worth the same or less, given that 10 to $20K is invested to keep it safe, in good condition and up to speed mechanically, over the next 5 years. During this economy, this is a great time to shop.
Now, Do not forget this is great fun, adventure and recreation, Not much in return for your fun. Not an investment, just an expense for travel & more fun.
But no expense $$$ for air fare, rental car, motel, and lesser $$ spent in restaurants.
If an RV is in your future, do investigate a BlueBird Bus Motorhome, You will get quality, safety, and dependability, and peace of mind. Review the classified section of this Forum and the several other Wanderlodge forums, Vintage Bird Forum members are usually very contentious of repair, maintenance and condition.
It would be a good idea to attend a BB Rally, several are held each year through-out the States. As it is difficult to roam around to see feel and touch a Bird.

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Subject: need electrical help


Author:
Rick Moomaw
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 21/ 08, 8:13am

I have a 1973 FC 31 and have an electrical question. On our last outing in the fall I noticed the driving lights go dim every few seconds. I realized that a circuit breaker was tripping every few seconds due to a heavy load. I unhooked the breaker (in the compartment above the driver), and that solved the problem, but I can't find anything not working. Does anyone have a schematic showing what each breaker does? I cannot find it in the manuals that I have. Thanks for any help. Rick

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Subject: Pre-Purchase Inspection - 1982 M35 Wanderlodge


Author:
Bob Tenges (Apprehesive)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 16/ 08, 5:02am

I am considering the purchase of a vintage 1982 Bluebird M35 Wanderlodge with a non-Turbo Cat diesel. I live in southeaster Wisconsin where the unit is located and need a reliable inspector to go over the chassis, drivetrain and all systems. Any recommendations? Thanks.

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[> Subject: Re: Pre-Purchase Inspection - 1982 M35 Wanderlodge


Author:
Mike Hohnstein
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 15/ 08, 7:25pm

Hi, Mike Hohnstein here. I'm very familiar with Wanderlodge and I'm willing to discuss your situation.
My contact number is 414 303 7079. I live in Germantown and presently own a restored 83FC and I have done extensive service and maintenence on various RVs for years. Call anytime if interested.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Pre-Purchase Inspection - 1982 M35 Wanderlodge


Author:
Bob Tenges
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 16/ 08, 5:02am

Thanks for your offer, Mike. I live in Mequon, not far away and I will give you a call.

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Subject: 534 Ford industrial engine


Author:
Mark
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 15/ 08, 7:17pm

There is a 77 BB in the For Sale section with a 534 Ford Ind Engine. Does anyone have any experience with these motors?

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[> Subject: Re: 534 Ford industrial engine


Author:
Mike Hohnstein
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 15/ 08, 7:17pm

Good old engine, but impossible to find parts for if any thing serious happens. There are those that will question this position, so I would investigate the availability of parts, in your area for such an engine. The industrials were available in 391,477 and 534. They are not the same as automotive and light truck FE type engines. More similar to what is referred to as a MEL, or Mercury, Edsel, Lincoln.
Had to try and find a pair of heads for a 534 TWENTY years ago, it was real tough then. I doubt it would be any easier today. The other thing is the lack of fuel efficiency, or lack of same. If the engine is tuned perfectly and the carb is working right, you might expect 5 mpg @ 55 mph. More than likely you will get 4. Ya gotta remember, this was a current engine when fuel was a little cheaper. Same era as the V-6 GMC truck engine, another strong runner, but hard on fuel consumption.

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Subject: Driving Lights


Author:
Hector Gomez (Happy)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 12/ 08, 10:31pm

I have a problem locating a replacement lens for my driving lights. The glass lens is shattered from highway debri. Hella is the make and I have a 1990 Silver Edition. Hope someone can give some info. where to purchase a replacement lens. I am also looking for a wiring diagram for my Bird. I have not had much luck with Bluebird in GA. I also am looking for an actuator for my Genset. My actuator is hit and miss. I have removed it a couple times to check it out. It pushes the genset out but sometimes can not pull the genset back in, the motor keeps running but nothing happens. A new one cost about $400.00. Thanks, Hector

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Subject: 82 Bluebird,( A Newcommer) Lots of Questions


Author:
Don Dempsey
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 12/ 08, 11:52am

Hey All,
Its me again with BB questions,if anyone can help.I GOT The Bird running Yahoo!!!! She aired right up as well.How can someone ever let these get to this point I will never undersatand.Question #1 Does anyone reside in the Delaware area that may be able to help me undersatand how all the workings are on a 1982 33 foot WL? #2 Does anyone know if this thing has a nutral saftey or a safety on the tranny.#3 When I attempt to place the ground wire,(from battery to frame ground on the front of bus&front of steering)it starts to arc as if somethings on,cant find anything on.See at this point it will not start with the key,Had to jump it the old way,(starter) to make sure it ran first. Now that I know it runs I will get on with what ever it needs. These things are first class. Any help would be wonderfull Thanks Don.D

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[> Subject: Re: 82 Bluebird,( A Newcommer) Lots of Questions


Author:
Bruce
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 5/ 08, 3:28pm

Don,

Check to see if on the right side of the dash panel, there may be a switch labeled "A/T." We went through this on a new to us '79 33' FC. Lot's of starting with a screwdriver against the starter terminals. Found out the hard way (paying people to figure this out for us) that there is a switch. Flip the switch up (toward the windshield). According to the manuals that came with Tom's "lodge," A/T stands for "anti-theft." The ignition switch is wired through that switch. Flip the switch down when arming the alarm system (something we haven't tried yet!).

Hope that helps and still applies to your '82,
Bruce (for Tom the owner)
'79 33' FC

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[> Subject: Re: 82 Bluebird,( A Newcommer) Lots of Questions


Author:
Ed Wimberley
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 12/ 08, 11:52am

Don
I own an 82/35PT with 6v92 Detroit it has a transmission neutral switch in the start circuit.
Send email or fax and I will send print of circuit if needed.
Ed

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Subject: HWH Leveling jack pump location? '79 33' FC


Author:
Bruce
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 05/ 5/ 08, 1:09pm

Hello Group!

I'm working with a friend who recently purchased a '79 FC 33' Wanderlodge. This past weekend, we installed a brand new Norcold refrigerator to replace the old Dometic RM100 which had a blown cooling unit. Installing the refrigerator required some modifications to the cabinet opening and running a new wiring harness along the frame rail to the battery bank for 12 VDC. I also fabricated a new LP line to the refrigerator. Everything should work fine now except that we need to level the coach in order to test the refrigerator. Here's the problem:

When we attempted to level the coach, two of the four jacks did not deploy at all. One came down already partly extended and ended up jambed onto the pavement. The other one leaked hydraulic fluid all over the ground. I was able to disconnect the hydraulic fittings at the jack that was wedged on the ground and get it to retract. The lift piston is still extended.

It is clear that the HWH leveling system will need to be overhauled and serviced. The problem is that I can't find the pump and reservoir. I can hear it running but I can't find it. My biggest fear is that it is stowed above the waste tanks. We have nothing in the paper package we have found so far that tells us where BlueBird hid that pump. Any help in locating it would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.
Bruce (for Tom, the owner)
'79 33' FC, Cat 2830

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Subject: Wanderlodge vs Tornado


Author:
Jerald Peterson
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 19/ 08, 7:30pm

I know that wise men say that one should abandon vehicles in case of a tornado. Has anyone ever been through a tornado in their Wanderlodge? Which would be better shelter, a 12 Ton Bird or a sturdy pole barn art studio? We have our 83FC35RB parked in front of our 30x50 Studio, and we live in Oklahoma. It is that time of year again.

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Subject: Re: Paint Job


Author:
PATRICIA SHANNON (HAPPY)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 18/ 08, 7:36am

P. S. BE SURE AND TELL THEM THAT PAT SHANNON REFERRED YOU.

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Subject: Paint Job


Author:
Steve
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 18/ 08, 7:34am

I just bought a 1982 35' FC Bird. How do I find the right place to have the outside painted and have it done right. Also, what should I expect to pay for a really nice job? I live in West Palm Beach, FL. I will travel to have it done right. Thank You

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[> Subject: Re: Paint Job


Author:
PATRICIA SHANNON (HAPPY)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 18/ 08, 7:34am

SAGON RV CENTER IN JACKSON, GA HAS A PAINT AND BODY MAN THAT WORKED AT THE BLUE BIRD FACTORY IN FT. VALLEY FOR YEARS. HE HAS DONE WORK FOR ME AND HE DOES EXCELLENT WORK AND THE PRICE IS VERY RESONABLE. THE NUMBER IS 1-800-433-6626 AND HIS NAME IS MIKE HARRIS.

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Subject: Headlight lens cover '01 LXI


Author:
Mike Shulamn
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 17/ 08, 4:32pm

Has anyone ever removed the outer plastic sheet that covers the headlights? Mine has yellowed and would like to remove them.
The coach is a 2001 LXI
Thank you kindly
Mike

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[> Subject: Re: Headlight lens cover '01 LXI


Author:
Rich D.
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 15/ 08, 10:47am

Mike,

I removed mine ('99LXi) as they were yellowed and also a PITA to clean out the dirt that accumulates between the lens and the lights. They have been out for several years with no problems.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Headlight lens cover '01 LXI


Author:
Mike Shulman
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 15/ 08, 4:25pm

Might I ask, how did you remove the covers ?
Thank you for your response.
Mike

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Headlight lens cover '01 LXI


Author:
Rich D.
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 17/ 08, 8:11am

Remove the plexiglass wrap-around panels by unscrewing the 4 "T" nuts on each side. (You can see them on either side of the generator behind the "bumper area". Pry the clear plastic lens covers away from the plexiglass panel and re-install.

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: Headlight lens cover '01 LXI


Author:
Mike Shulman
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 17/ 08, 4:32pm

Thank you so much for your help. You have been most kind!
Mike

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Subject: How to list my bird for sale ?


Author:
Kenneth Kamrath
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 14/ 08, 5:13pm

How do I access the for sale site to list my bird.
The list your bird at the end of the sale site dos'nt work.

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[> Subject: Re: How to list my bird for sale ?


Author:
ernie ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 14/ 08, 5:13pm

Ken, on the home page scroll down and click on where it says webmaster. That should fix you up. Ernie- 83PT40

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Subject: Used WL values


Author:
Alan
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 13/ 08, 7:59am

Hello;

One question I have is when you are looking to purchase a used WL, where can you find a book value for some of the older ones or do you just keep your nose to the grind stone looking for clues as to what one is worth? Thanks

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[> Subject: Re: Used WL values


Author:
Bob Gregg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 6/ 08, 10:52am








I looked up my 86 40 last month in NADA on the web.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Used WL values


Author:
Alan
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 27/ 08, 8:00am

Thank you for your help, I will check NADA for sure

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[> Subject: Re: Used WL values


Author:
Don McHenry
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 13/ 08, 7:59am

I'm on my 3rd used Bird. Call a Dealer for Blue Birds and ask them what they would charge for a certain year, type, etc. Their price will probably be the highest. Next find out what they would give you on trade in for that model. A fair price would be in-between depending on the condition of the coach you are interested in. Sometimes owners will price high expecting to have to lower the price during dealing. Sometimes their coach is truly superior due to maintenance and re-decorating.

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Subject: 90 SP Air system


Author:
Donald McHenry
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 13/ 08, 7:31am

Bought a 90SP from a previous owner last spring. No books except a water stained owner's manual. It's parked in our stone driveway and won't air-up. Hard to get under and search for problem. We need a contact that can help us find out how the air system is laid out on this model.

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[> Subject: Re: 90 SP Air system


Author:
ernie ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 12/ 08, 6:41am

Donald, have you flipped the suspension dump switches? Also- if you hear air excaping when the coach first starts up, then you might have an air governor that is faulty.
Ernie- 83PT40 in Montana

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[> [> Subject: Re: 90 SP Air system


Author:
Don
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 12/ 08, 8:29pm

Thanks will attempt. I will get back to you with results
Don

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[> Subject: Re: 90 SP Air system


Author:
Robert Glover
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 12/ 08, 9:52am

The easiest way to locate any leaks is to do the following...

Turn your engine off so you can HEAR any leaks.

Connect a good shop air compressor to the port in the rear engine compartment. In my 91 SP36, the port is located on the right side, right next to the power steering container.

With your shop air compressor running, does your coach air up? If not, listen for leaks. If the coach DOES air up, the problem is probably your engine compressor or governor.

Hopefully, it is a minor leak somewhere that is easily corrected.

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[> [> Subject: Re: 90 SP Air system


Author:
Don
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 12/ 08, 8:32pm

Thanks Rober will attempt these and let you know how I made out. Thanks again Don

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[> [> Subject: Re: 90 SP Air system


Author:
Don McHenry
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 13/ 08, 7:26am

You're helping 2 Dons! The other guy said thanks and so do we. Will try your suggestions.

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[> [> Subject: Re: 90 SP Air system


Author:
Don McHenry
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 13/ 08, 7:31am

Can you tell us where the air tanks are located?

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Subject: Bluebird


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 04/ 13/ 08, 4:35am

Hey all,
After a long long long time looking have found and purchased my dream blue bird.(one that needs lots of attention but could buy in my price range) #1 can anyone tell me how you can get the gen.set to slide out without air.#2 same thing with the steps. #3 does anyone know of a good place to purchase,(buy) air bags. See this bird sat for a long time after purchased and was used like a cabin. I new this and am well awere of all that is needed or can be needed. i look at this as being better to restore then a hot rod and when done you have somthing more. The bird has a 3208 cat none turbo 73000 miles 35 ft. diesel koler. At this point Im not sure if it is going to need air bags but am starting to gather info. Thanks for your help Don

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[> Subject: Re: Bluebird


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 13/ 08, 4:35am

Try this link, They seem to have good prices and the best web site for finding the part numbers and descriptions.

http://www.truckspring.com/indentification-tips_1000.html

The air bag number should be in your blue box or on the air bag.,

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Subject: max feul preasure light on


Author:
Gene Mehr
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 7/ 08, 9:37pm

Have 82 fc 3208 na had tranny sevice done and tested looked like machanech ran coach hard on test drive. when i picked it up the max fuel light was on, replaced filters no change. looked for loose wire on sending unit no luck. What does this lite mean? cant find info in any of my books. Thanks Gene

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[> Subject: Re: max feul preasure light on


Author:
ernie
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 7/ 08, 5:24pm

Gene, that lite tells you that the fuel is maxed out. It is just a Bluebird add-on and does not affect your performance. My FC worked sometimes, my PT does not work. I'm more concerned about the Racor gauge going into yellow, then red. Thats when you need to change your filters. Someone must have messed with one of the zillion wires when they were working on your coach. Ernie

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[> [> Subject: Re: max feul preasure light on


Author:
Gene Mehr
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Date Posted: 04/ 7/ 08, 9:26pm


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[> [> [> Subject: Re: max feul preasure light on


Author:
Gene Mehr
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 04/ 7/ 08, 9:37pm

Thankyou were is that wire located and i did notice today that the last owner removed the racore filter and never replaced it. I have a new one know that i will put in. Racore gage has always been zero. Is that bad? THANKS

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Subject: 91 Wonderlodge SP36 need parts


Author:
Oliden Ortiz
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Date Posted: 04/ 6/ 08, 6:32am

Hi, i just bought a 91 Wonderlodge SP36, my first RV I love it, i don't know anything about this. Where can i find parts & accesories for it? Miami 305-335-5740 Oliden Thanks

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[> Subject: Re: 91 Wonderlodge SP36 need parts


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 03/ 13/ 08, 10:49am

Wanderlodge is now owned by BB Coachworks, Fort VAlley Ga. still has parts and tech support. 478-825-0330
All RV parts are available and most chassis, air, brakes etc. are truck/bus parts, all easily available at truck part suppliers and NAPA etc.

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[> Subject: Re: 91 Wonderlodge SP36 need parts


Author:
Stephen
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Date Posted: 04/ 6/ 08, 6:32am

Dupree Products also has Wanderlodge Parts

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Subject: Air Dump Valve Repair


Author:
Lance Crowley
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Date Posted: 04/ 4/ 08, 6:00am

I've got a leaky air cylinder on my dump valves for my '93 WB. Talked to Earl at BB and they want to sell me the whole valve and air cylinder assembly for ~$400.

There is an old post by a Randy Dupree talking about his replacement, tried the number listed and it's been disconnected.

Does anyone have any ideas on a fix/repair?

Lance

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[> Subject: Re: Air Dump Valve Repair


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 04/ 4/ 08, 6:00am

Call this number 905-328-0162 between 8:00 and 4:00 CST....it's the number to dupree products

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Subject: Temperature Guage Readings


Author:
Leroy A. Eckert
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Date Posted: 03/ 28/ 08, 1:00pm

1990 Wanderlodge WB 40

On a recent trip we lost the alternator. It had a 135amp installed but the coach prints called for a 160amp unit. A 160amp unit was installed. Alternator works fine but the following guages have different readings than before. Nothing was changed or disturbed except the alternator itself.
before after
Engine water temp 190 170
Engine oil temp 230 210
Transmission oil temp170 125
Retarder temp 230 210

I haven't been able to detetmine the problem. Sounds like a common ground, yet no other wires were disturbed.

Thanks, Leroy Eckert

1990 Wanderlodge WB 40

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[> Subject: Re: Temperature Guage Readings


Author:
Harvey Lawrence
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Date Posted: 03/ 29/ 05, 5:38pm

I wonder if you knew the voltage registering on you dash volt meter at 1850 RPM with the old alternator and if it is lower with the new alternator?? It sound like the new alternator voltage regulator might not be set as high as the old one and therefor might show in your gauge readings. Another thought is that if you have several batteries and your 130 amp alternator is trying to do the job charging them that the 160 did you might have a load heavy enough to drop charging volts a little. Just a guess
Harv

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[> [> Subject: Re: Temperature Guage Readings


Author:
Leroy A. Eckert
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Date Posted: 04/ 3/ 05, 4:06pm

Thank you sir for your reply.
I am pulling my hair out on this deal. Voltage readings have remained the same at the dash guage about 14v. 50 amps on the output. I have gone to checking voltage at all of the subject guages and all are within millivoltes of each other. I ran a seperate ground from the house batteries direct to each guage with no change.(ie: Looking for a faulty ground) This was done with the subject components hot.
I did read temperatures at the engine thermostat with a heat gun and it registered 168 on both thermostats. The next time I run it I will take heat gun readings at the retarder, transmittion pan, and engine oil pan. I have checked grounds and have found nothing haywire. I have contacted Bluebird without success. The only thing that I have not tried is to change the ground cable on the subject alternator. I do not know why, desparation maybe, but I will change it tomorrow. To add to this mystery, it was very cool last evening. I turned on the Primis systems, both of them, nothing! They have been working perfectly. These systems have new pumps and have been recently serviced.

Frankly, I do not have a clue. Any ideas would be appreciated. Thanks so much.

Leroy A. Eckert
1990 WB 40

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[> [> Subject: Re: Temperature Guage Readings


Author:
Leroy A. Eckert
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Date Posted: 04/ 25/ 05, 2:30pm

Thanks for your previous reply. The guages started working after I changed the ground wire on the #1 alternator. I still do not understand why, but thought I would pass it along.


thanks again,
Leroy Eckert
Niceville, FL.

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Temperature Guage Readings


Author:
Gene Romo (interesteing)
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Date Posted: 03/ 28/ 08, 1:00pm

My late great uncle August always said "Always check your grounds first" "90% of the time your problem lies there."
His words have proved true more times than I can remember.
just a note to remember.
Gene & karen Romo
Oxford, NC.
www.jerseytomatas.blogspot.com

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Subject: 2 Cycle Diesel Engines


Author:
Bob Oats (Wondering)
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Date Posted: 03/ 24/ 08, 7:04am

I am looking into a purchase of a 86 Bird with a Detroit diesel which is 2 cycle. Anything to be aware of on the 2 cycles?

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[> Subject: Re: 2 Cycle Diesel Engines


Author:
ernie ekberg
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Date Posted: 03/ 22/ 08, 5:50am

The 2 strokes have been around forever. The parts are readily available. Use straight 40 weight oil- no blends. Where is the coach located? One of us could check it out for you. Ralph Fullenwider does PDI's on Bluebirds. Ernie-83PT40- 6v92 Detroit, 2 stroke

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[> [> Subject: Re: 2 Cycle Diesel Engines


Author:
Bob Oats
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Date Posted: 03/ 24/ 08, 7:04am

Thanks. I am going to see the rig soon. Thanks for the offer.

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Subject: FC Noise


Author:
Steve C
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Date Posted: 03/ 13/ 08, 11:00am

I am considering purchasing a 1988 FC diesel and was wondering about the possible noise up front while going down the road. Anyone have any experience? Are diesels located in the front harder to work on than a pusher?

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[> Subject: Re: FC Noise


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 03/ 13/ 08, 11:00am

88/89 FC's are last years produced, Late model FC's are a bargain, 300 HP turbo, 5 speed w/trans retarder, 12R225 tires, queen walk around bed. better steering, Imron paint, and more. Plus 7 to 8 MPG, some claim more. Normal conversation is easily possible, it has better insulation and the turbo and remote under the front bumper air filter helps quiet the diesel. It is good to be able to hear the engine drone. Still 35 ft fits into most State and National Parks.
Front accessability is a little difficult, 30 to 45 minutes, (after the first time of learning), to open the grill. But this is not often necessary.
Bill 88 FC owner

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Subject: NADA book prices versus asking prices


Author:
Dan
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Date Posted: 03/ 8/ 08, 3:02pm

Hello. I have been looking at the Wanderlodge for a while. One thing I noticed, was the huge difference in the asking prices on this website and others like the bird connection, and the average retail prices listed in NADA, anyone have any opinions or theories as to why this is so? Bluebird owners know their stuff, So I can't think of a better group to pose this question to. Cheers.

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[> Subject: Re: NADA book prices versus asking prices


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 02/ 6/ 08, 3:36pm

Dan, perhaps the classifieds on this site are more realistically priced as there is no fee for this service. Ernie

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[> Subject: Re: NADA book prices versus asking prices


Author:
Dean
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Date Posted: 03/ 7/ 08, 7:21am

I too have been comparing prices on NADA and have found their prices drastically lower than what is listed on this site and other FSBO Bluebirds. Anyone have input on what is realistic pricing?

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[> [> Subject: Re: NADA book prices versus asking prices


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 03/ 8/ 08, 3:02pm

It is very difficult to put a price on a coach and then compare it to another coach. All these coaches were manufactured to owners specs. They aren't cookie cutter mass productions models, for sure. If anyone has a coach they are interested in, let us know. Perhaps we can check it out for you.

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Subject: wanted


Author:
Marion Flemming
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Date Posted: 02/ 26/ 08, 7:17am

I'm looking for and owners manual for a 32ft 1973 Bluebird bus conversion 390 Ford engine
If anyone has one or knows where to find one please contact me. Thank you

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Subject: LX vs LXI


Author:
Greg Haag
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Date Posted: 02/ 25/ 08, 5:48am

I am looking to purchase a 1998-2000 LX or LXI and was trying to find out the pro's and cons of the 450-500 cummins vs the Detroit 60. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Thanks,
Greg

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Subject: FC Operators Manaul


Author:
Doug Doyle
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Date Posted: 02/ 24/ 08, 10:12am


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[> Subject: Re: FC Operators Manaul


Author:
Doug Doyle
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Date Posted: 02/ 12/ 08, 2:11pm

I have and Operator's Manual for a FC if anyone is interested in it. It is 6" X 9", 73 pages and looks brand new. Contact me at dougdoyle@charter.net and I will send it. First come/first served. Doug

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[> [> Subject: Re: FC Operators Manaul


Author:
Doug Doyle
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Date Posted: 02/ 13/ 08, 11:02am

The manual has been given away to Bill Pape FC88-FL. Doug 83PT40 Oregon

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[> [> Subject: Re: FC Operators Manaul


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 02/ 24/ 08, 10:12am

Thank you Doug Doyle for sending me the operator's manual for the Forward Control BB.
Possibly I can return a favor someday.
Thanks Again, Bill

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Subject: Newbie Questions


Author:
Lizzy B (Question?)
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Date Posted: 02/ 24/ 08, 4:37am

My family and I are looking to purchase an older/Wonderlodge - as beginners...we have many questions.
I have found a seller that seems very honest - but still have questions for a third party. Help!

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[> Subject: Re: Newbie Questions


Author:
ernie ekberg
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Date Posted: 02/ 22/ 08, 2:47pm

Lizzy- ask away. Ernie

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[> Subject: Re: Newbie Questions


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 02/ 24/ 08, 4:37am

Lizzy,

What year? What model?? Where are you and the Bird located?? Someone may know this Bird. It may be located near a Forum member, Many Bird owners volunteer their time for a first pass look or there are several very qualified Bird Experts that will charge an inspection fee.

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Subject: New Wanderlodge owner


Author:
Robert Glover
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Date Posted: 02/ 23/ 08, 8:39pm

Hello to all. I am now the proud owner of a 1991 SP36. While this is my first coach, I am quite familier with Blue Birds, because my parents have owned a few in the past.

So, now I get to enjoy our frigid Michigan winter fixing minor issues, updating features on the coach, and getting her ready for spring!

One question: Does anyone have an original "Blue Bird clock" they'd be willing to sell?

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[> Subject: Re: New Wanderlodge owner


Author:
Marty Morgan
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Date Posted: 01/ 26/ 08, 8:35am

Hi Robert, I too was looking for a Bluebird clock, but found them to be very rare. The man, I believe his name was Mr. Bradshaw, that made the clocks for Bluebird, died some years ago. He was a bluebird factory worker that made the clocks for bluebird on his own time. I contacted the factory and was able to obtain all of the original pictures, patterns and dimensions for the clock and have since found a clock company that sells the movement and letters. The clock spelled WANDERLODGE counterclockwise with the old style bluebird emblem for the 12. They are made from 1 1/2" thick mahogony wood and the bird looks to the right. I am going to make myself a clock, I would be willing to make you one as well. If you are interested, let me know, Take care, Marty

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[> [> Subject: Re: New Wanderlodge owner


Author:
Marty Morgan
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Date Posted: 01/ 26/ 08, 8:40am

Above message should state "Bird looks to the LEFT". Thanks

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[> [> Subject: Re: New Wanderlodge owner


Author:
Richard Tapp
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Date Posted: 02/ 23/ 08, 8:39pm

I might be intrested in a replacement clock what is involved? Cost, shipping, timeframe?

Thanks,

Richard

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Subject: ????


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 02/ 22/ 08, 4:18am

Where did all the messages go?

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[> Subject: Re: ????


Author:
Dave Ward
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Date Posted: 02/ 21/ 08, 5:58pm

Go to the top right of the page and click on Archive #1.

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[> [> Subject: Re: ????


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 02/ 22/ 08, 4:18am

Thanks Dave,You would think that when they archive all the on going message pages someone would explain that. oh well no big deal.

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Subject: PT-38 Exact Length


Author:
Pete Miller
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Date Posted: 02/ 20/ 08, 10:02am

Can anyone tell me what the exact bumper to bumper length is on a PT-38? Same info on a PT-36 would be helpful also. Thanks.

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Subject: Transmission Concerns


Author:
Dave Ward (Curious)
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Date Posted: 02/ 19/ 08, 9:49pm

I am approaching retirement and would like to get a motorhome and travel. I have always felt the Blue Bird Wanderlodge was the best coach on the road. My question is this, as I read the ads here all the coaches seem to have either 4, 5 or 6 speed Allison Transmissions. Back in the 1960's and early 70's I drove Blue Bird buses for A.S.U. our buses all had the 391 Ford engine and we had 5 speed sticks with 2 speed axles and 6 speed Allisons. I always felt the Allison was a poor match for the 391, it just never seemed to fit with the power curve of that engine. On trips from Phoenix to Flagstaff and the Grand Canyon I could run circles around the automatics with the 5 spd. with split axle.
Any thoughts? Do the newer transmissions work better?
Dave

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Subject: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
Dillon Harris
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Date Posted: 02/ 17/ 08, 6:57pm

Can someone tell me where the starter solenoid is mounted on the 84 PT-36? The coach has a 6v92 Detroit.

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[> Subject: Re: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
Bob Lawrence
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 9/ 07, 11:45am

Stand directly behind the engine. Look down the right side of engine block. You will see it there.

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[> [> Subject: Re: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
Dillon Harris
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Date Posted: 12/ 10/ 07, 3:11pm

Thanks I located the solenoid on top of the starter but still can not get the engine to crank reliably. I do not think the problem is with the starter but in the wiring between the switch and the starter as I get no continuity with the tester. I do not have a wirinig schematic for the circuit so I am shooting in the dark. Any information is useful at this time.

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
Art Weatherly
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 12/ 07, 7:40pm

Does your coach have a rear starting station? If so, how does it start from the rear. There is a diagram of the stating connections in Wanderlodge owners Online. I printed it because I'm have problems starting from the inside. It always srarts from the outside.

Art Weatherly
Riverside Ca
'85 PT36

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
ernie ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 13/ 07, 5:15am

Art, I had the same problem a few years ago. It was in the wiring inside the box in the rear that has a key for the remote start. A friend took that apart and bypassed the toggle switch. It starts with the pushbutton or the front key. Ernie

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[> Subject: Re: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
Ralph Arnold
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Date Posted: 12/ 14/ 07, 9:09pm

HELP HELP I have a 89 BB SP-36 with a problem. I was crusing down I-75 just N. of Macon Ga. When all of a sudden the engine Quit All the Guages were in the Green before it just quit running. It won't even try to start. like the primary circuit is open. The ignition switch doesn't do anything. I went to check the manual but the section with the scematics was there. Wasn't ready to print at this time--Bummer I wonder if Anyone has section X (10) I'm an old Electronics Tech so I know how to read them. Any help would be welcomed. Thank You--Ralph

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[> [> Subject: Re: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
David Ward
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 17/ 08, 6:57pm

Ralph,
Your story of the sudden death of all electrical systems brought back memories for me.
In 1965 I was a bus driver for Arizona State University. My boss and another driver picked up 2 new Birds from the factory and drove them back to the campus. The day after their return I had a class field trip to Flagstaff to the observatories, a night trip. On the trip home, about 50 miles north of Phoenix I was on a 5 mile 6% down grade, when I experienced the same thing you did. Total electrical failure, dead engine, and no lights anywhere. I grabbed a flashlight and a couple flares and went to work. What is now I-17 was then a 2 lane highway and not a good place to be sitting in the middle of the road with no lights at 3:00 in the morning. Thankfully there was also a lot less traffic then than there is now. With the sudden failure my first stop was the battery compartment where I found the ground strap completely off the battery. Even though I was in a brand new bus I always carried a basic tool kit so was able to fix it and get back on the road quickly but it was a real nervous 10 minutes.
Dave

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[> Subject: Re: 84 pt-36 starter solenoid


Author:
Dillon Harris
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 19/ 07, 11:01am

Problem turned out to be in the grounding strap. I figured this out after seeing sparks flying from under the bus. I took the strap loose from the frame and filed the surfaces before replacing the straps bolt and now it starts every time. The problem now is that the air system lifts only the passenger side and the bus refuses to pull forward as if the front brake were stuck. Any ideas?

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Subject: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
Sam
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Date Posted: 02/ 17/ 08, 4:49pm

I have a 35' 1983 FC and lost the fuel cap. I called BB when I lost it and they said they no longer have the caps in stock. Anyone out there know where I could locate one?

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[> Subject: Re: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 27/ 08, 9:46am

Try here for fuel caps.

http://www.velvac.com/

or truck stops, like Flying J, TA, Pilot, or Napa parts Stores

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[> [> Subject: Re: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
Sam
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 3/ 08, 6:42am

Bill and Willie, thanks for your replys. I ended up going to my local plumbing shop and bought a standerd 2 1/2 inch black pipe steel cap. Screwed right on. 9 bucks

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
Rich D.
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 5/ 08, 12:00pm

You may want to purchase a brass cap (non-sparking) rather than the steel or cast iron cap. With diesel it is not as critical as with gas but the originals were a brass or bronze alloy for safety.

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
Sam
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 5/ 08, 12:49pm

Rich, thanks for the heads up. I did ask if they had a brass one based on what Willie said, I'll keep looking for one. thanks

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[> [> [> [> [> Subject: Re: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
Richard Tapp
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 17/ 08, 9:25am

Looking for a Brass 2 1/2" cap try a fire safety sprinkler company or a fire hose supplier. W.S. Darley is a Fire Equipments sales company that will have something or can get it for you.

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[> Subject: Re: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
willie green
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 28/ 08, 9:36am


I Purchased a "brass cap" from a local plumbing supply a few year ago..., works fine!

I believe the primary usage is for fuel tanks.

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[> Subject: Re: Fuel Cap lost


Author:
NH-Bill
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 17/ 08, 4:49pm

I recently saw this question asked somewhere else.

One of the responses was a plumbing supply house.
They probably have a heavy brass cap that will do the job nicely.
Chances are it will not be stamped Blue Bird.

You may be able get it from one of the Blue Bird School Bus distributors also.

http://service.blue-bird.com/Parts/PartsPubs.html

http://blue-bird.com/dealers.php?distype=school

NH- Bill
1983 FC 35

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Subject: Jensen Vent Fan


Author:
Doug Doyle
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 12/ 08, 11:22pm

We recently purchased a 83 PT40 and am going thru the rig. Where can I get the white gear set thst opens the vent lid for the Jensen vents?There are three of these units in our coach and all of them are stripped. Thanks, Doug

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[> Subject: Re: Jensen Vent Fan


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 12/ 08, 4:10pm

Doug, Bluebird use to use fantastic vents in their coaches. perhaps you have one of those? Where did you get your coach from? I may have known the owner. Ernie Ekberg, 83PT40 in Texas

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[> [> Subject: Re: Jensen Vent Fan


Author:
Doug Doyle
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 12/ 08, 11:22pm

Ernie, We picked it up in Mesa from Bob & Jackie McIntrye.(Was advertised on Bird Connection) Coach does have one Fantastic fan by kitchen and 3 Jensen's (bath-bedroom-forward) Has one between forward and kitchen but have not taken it apart to clean yet. It has a slding grate and sliding switch and does work ok. Doug

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Subject: interior head hight


Author:
Kevin
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 12/ 08, 10:53am

As I get close to finalizing a deal on a coach, via pictures and e mail. I have a question. What is teh interior head hight in a 79 FC35. Was it standard, I'm 6'4 and shrinking slowly.

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[> Subject: Re: interior head hight


Author:
Don
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 12/ 08, 10:53am

About 6' to 5'-11" depending on floor covering. Roof top AC's drop about 2", not present on central air. Wide body busses have additional head room. At your height you will be slouching allot. Regards, Don

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Subject: Fuel economy


Author:
Kevin
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 5/ 08, 6:02am

As a bit of a newbie, I find myself looking to buy a Wanderlodge. What would be a reasonable expectation for over the road mileage. This is the standard 3208 with the 4spd allison.

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[> Subject: Re: Fuel economy


Author:
Sam
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 02/ 5/ 08, 6:02am

Most see around 7 to 9 mpg as long as the engine is maintained and runs well. Not sure if there is a differance between the 3208 NA or the 3208 turbo as far as fuel mileage goes. I have a 3208 turbo with 225 HP and see around 8 mpg

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Subject: finding parts for steering 85 holday rambler imperal


Author:
william st john
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 01/ 18/ 08, 10:14am

i cant seam to find names of and parts for this frount end. ball joints i can find but theysay the bell crank on bith sides are worn, if thats the name. i need to find a lay out for the frount end with names.can you help??thank you . bill

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Subject: Thinking bluebird purchase


Author:
BillyBird
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Date Posted: 01/ 12/ 08, 8:45pm

So I have been watching some of the recent bluebird sales and have been looking at the various descriptions of the vintage birds and the owners who care for them. I am looking at the FC models for ease of maintenance and the cooler running environment and have focused my attention on the 1987 to 1989 vintage, 35' seems adequate. I grew up traveling in Motorhomes and am now looking to return to the road with my family of 4 (two small kids!). Please any input advise, suggestions on my first Bird purchase would be greatly appreciated.

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[> Subject: Re: Thinking bluebird purchase


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 05/ 25/ 07, 4:36pm

Review the History and check list on this web site.
FC's are a good value, but will need some sweat equity and at least $10k to 15K after purchase, over the first two or three years, This also depends on how much work you can do yourself. The latter the year the better, all will need some work, But you will eventually have a very road ready dependable machine, and more fun than any other other brand, with possibly fewer dollars lost when you decide to sell or upgrade.
I also like the later FC'S , they are the correct size for our needs and they suite our budget.

Bill 88 FC

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[> Subject: Re: Thinking bluebird purchase


Author:
June Scott
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Date Posted: 01/ 12/ 08, 8:45pm

I know you're focused on the '87 year model, however you might just be interested in our '85 model especially with the kids in mind. We are seriously considering selling our '85 35 foot Wanderlodge. It has 3 air conditioners and two twin beds in the rear. She is in good shape and we haven't had a single problem with her over the last 3 years!
We are simply considering upgrading to a newer model. We will stay with Bluebird since we feel they are a quality product. We are asking $50,000 obo.
Contact us if you are interested. Thanks - June & Mike Scott

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Subject: Lokking to sell our 1985 Bluebird Wanderlodge


Author:
June Scott
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Date Posted: 01/ 12/ 08, 8:33pm

Is anyone looking to purchase a 1985 Blue Bird Wanderlodge, with a Cat 3208? We hate to get rid of her but are going to upgrade simply to a newer model bus. She is in great shape and hate to get sell her. We are asking $50,000.00 for her obo.

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Subject: Painting


Author:
Danny
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Date Posted: 01/ 12/ 08, 4:52am

I am looking for someone who can paint our 94 bmc37. I have tried both of the advertisements on the Vintagebirds fixes and both of them has had the phone disconnected.

Any suggestions as to place and ball park price?

We are in Memphis, Tennessee.

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[> Subject: Re: Painting


Author:
Bob Maloney
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Date Posted: 12/ 28/ 07, 12:50pm

Sturgis Body Shop will paint Bluebirds. He painted our 87 FC 35 and even painted the Bluebird emblem instead of a decal. Don't ask what he charged because I helped--I drunk the beer and he did the work. He does good work and is reasonable. He also does welding aluminum, etc. His number is 859-498-9388.
Bob Maloney
87 FC 35
Second Wind
Clay City, Ky.

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[> Subject: Re: Painting


Author:
John Wood (FORMER MLGW MEMPHIS/GERMANTOWN RESIDENT)
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Date Posted: 01/ 12/ 08, 4:52am

Surfing through the Vintage Bird's site and noticed you are from Memphis, Tn. I spent 51+/- years in Memphis and 17 years with MLGW before taking my money out of pension and running! Bought 1992 pt40 wide body recently after studying up on this site for the past couple of years. I feel we have both made the wise choice in coach ownership. A friend of mine in Florence Alabama (senators coaches) has someone local he uses.

John Wood
P.O. Box 266
Dyersburg, Tn 38025-0266
johnwood5835@yahoo.com
870-273-5835

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Subject: Batteries for 89 PT40


Author:
Gus Rodriguez
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Date Posted: 01/ 12/ 08, 3:50am

I am the proud owner of a new to me 89 PT40. I have several issues that need attention but will attack one at a time. My BB is slow to start, as though not enough battery power is there to really crank good. I have six trojan 105 batteries in the engine compartment, but they are all deep cycle, and one battery up front for the generator. Is this a common configuration or did the last owner replace the batteries with the wrong type? What is typical for my BB w/ an 8V92T? Any and all info appreciated. Gus

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[> Subject: Re: Batteries for 89 PT40


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 01/ 8/ 08, 2:34pm

Gus, i have Trojan 105s in my coach. They have served me well. That is the original configuration, I believe. Others have added more batteries. It depends if you intend to dry camp a lot. We like to be plugged into 50 amps. Ernie

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[> [> Subject: Re: Batteries for 89 PT40


Author:
Gus Rodriguez
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Date Posted: 01/ 10/ 08, 9:53pm

Ernie, do your trojan 105's supply the engine for starting purposes also or do you have a separate set for engine alone? I did some research on the trojan 105's and they do not have any data for cranking performance.

If anyone has added some batteries for cranking purposes please share the information. Thank you. Gus 89PT40

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Batteries for 89 PT40


Author:
Ernie
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Date Posted: 01/ 11/ 08, 2:30pm

In my coach, I have a total of 4 batteries. They are all tied together, thus my dry camping days are numbered by minutes, instead of hours. I also have a separate battery for the generator. Ernie

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[> Subject: Re: Batteries for 89 PT40


Author:
Shane Fedeli (85PT40)
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Date Posted: 01/ 12/ 08, 3:50am

Hi Gus,
Our PT 40 came with 6 6-volt cells originally. All were tied together and served both engine starting and house light/power purposes. When I bought the coach, the batteries were heavily corroded and did a poor job of holding much power. I replaced the older charger (the cause of the problem) and installed a Xantrex 3-stage (Prosine 2.0) charger/inverter. At that time, all of the old batteries got replaced too with Sam's Club (Eveready GC-2) Golf Cart batteries. They have worked flawlessly and easily can provide power for a day or two while dry camping before needing a recharge. I've had no problems starting my 6V92 in temps down to 40 degrees, even without the block heater. Another thing to make sure of is that your chassis and starter ground straps are making good contact with the frame. Get some sandpaper or a dremel tool with the wire brush attachment and clean those connection points. Coat the cable ends and mounting surfaces with a small amount of dielectric Silicone grease.

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Subject: Rebuilts/Replacements


Author:
Joe Fontana (Curious)
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Date Posted: 01/ 10/ 08, 4:33pm

I am looking into buy my first "Bird" and am looking at 1980s PT40s. Regardless of what I am being told by any seller, I have to politely assume "DOA", as a value on any engine/transmission/running gear I am seeing. As such, what range should I expect to spend rebuilding and/or replacing a 6v92T Detroit Diesel, 5-speed Allison transmission and other running gear, i.e. rear differential, brake hubs and etc. Should any of that be upgraded? Any recommendations as to whom I should have do the work? I reside in Southwest Florida, the Greater Ft. Myers area, but I am willing to travel anywhere to find the most competent person/outfit.

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[> Subject: Re: Rebuilts/Replacements


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 01/ 10/ 08, 3:51pm

There are plenty of Detroits still running great,
Have it checked out at a Detroit dealer.
There are several BB PT's for sale

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[> [> Subject: Re: Rebuilts/Replacements


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 01/ 10/ 08, 4:33pm

I have an 83 PT40 with over 300k miles. I'm ready to go to Montana in that baby and she has served me well for the last 6 years. There are quite a few coaches out there for sale

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Subject: Bluebird Service Locations


Author:
Bradley R. Paulson (Buz)
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Date Posted: 01/ 8/ 08, 5:39am

I recently purchased a 97 BMC in Little Rock, Arkansas and would like to find a REASONABLE AND REPUTABLE service location in the Little Rock, Fort Smith or general area to have the coach serviced prior to heading out on a 4000 mi trip. Can anyone recommend a good Service Facility in this area?

Thank You Buz thebuzman@clearwire.net

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[> Subject: Re: Bluebird Service Locations


Author:
Bill
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Date Posted: 01/ 8/ 08, 5:39am

If you need help on any system, tune-up, repairs or info. on how things operate.
You are within reach of BlueBird Fort Valley, Georgia.
Take 78 to Birmingham a good road.
Call Wendell , he is great and will take care of your concerns.
Then you will have a baseline of the condition of your coach, what needs fixed now and what can wait.
A great free camping location, tow a car and do some site-seeing.

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Subject: Wanderlodge Clock


Author:
Marty
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Date Posted: 01/ 2/ 08, 5:13pm

I am looking for an original bluebird clock with the shape being the bird and the clock #'s spelling out Wanderlodge with a bird emblem for the 12. Are there more than one variety of these clocks? If you have one, please let me know,I know they were in the early 80's buses. Thank you, Marty

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Subject: Tag axle


Author:
Russ McDonald
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Date Posted: 12/ 31/ 07, 7:27am

Have any insight as to the benefits of the tag axle? cons? are the older smaller < 36' models prone to more wandering with a cross wind that those with one? See a lot newer motor homes without them. Must be a siginificant weight difference? Blue Bird versus standard motor home

Thanks,
Rmacomaha

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[> Subject: Re: Tag axle


Author:
ernie ekberg
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Date Posted: 12/ 16/ 07, 6:33am

Bluebird vs "standard motorhome" Well, a Bluebird- my coach, does not feel fazed by winds or trucks. Seems like when you are that heavy and well built you don't have to worry about those things. I have had stick and staple motorhomes and they blew all over the road. Thus why we own Bluebirds. My coach has a tag and weighs 42,000 pounds. Since non bluebirds have only a single axle, leads me to believ there is not much steel in them. My opinion

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[> [> Subject: Re: Tag axle


Author:
John Finn
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Date Posted: 12/ 17/ 07, 4:57am

Russ and Ernie,

I thaught that I would jump in on this one, with a coment. Since I tow a 27 foot enclosed trailer behind my '82FC35RB 'Bird. http://www.pbase.com/iamflagman/image/54814817

I do notice some movement when large vehicles such as trucks and busses are passing me, but it is only noticable when they are just coming by the trailer, which when fully loaded weighs 8,800 pounds. Since the trailer is fairly light in comparrison to the 'Bird and has such a large area on the sides to catch the wave of air created by the large vehicle that is starting to pass, it moves the trailer thus causing a slight movement of the rear of the 'Bird, which in turn, transfers to a slight movement in the 'Birds steering wheel, although it is not enough to cause a concern, but enough so that I can feel it, especially if I'm not paying attention to my mirrors at the time.

I like many other FC model 'Bird owners, have spent a great amount of time and effort to reduce the amount of play that was in the steering and the suspension on my 'Bird, thus making for a much more comfortable trip, to the point now that I can feel such movement in the trailer and not atribute that to WANDER in my Wanderlodge.

Ironicly Ernie, my 'Bird and trailer combined weight is about the same as just your PT, were you in your 'Bird when it was weighed and had you been to a mexican restaraunt just before you weighed it :o)

MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

JOHN FINN
1982 FC35RB BLUEBIRD WANDERLODGE
HOPKINS, SOUTH CAROLINA
VISIT THE FINN'S INN EXPRESS REMODELING ADVENTURE AND TECH. TIPS
http://www.pbase.com/image/24977457
I'M SO SLOW ON THE HILLS,
THAT I GET TO SMELL THE FLOWERS AS I GO BY
.....AND WATCH THEM GROW TOO!!
REMEMBER 9/11

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Tag axle


Author:
Don
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Date Posted: 12/ 27/ 07, 3:30pm

Hello,

My 1980 FC31SB had allot of road play until I adequately lubricated all of the zirk fittings. There was always allot of steering box play on mine that I think is typical on the older front control BB's that have not had this addressed.

My PT-40 is rock solid and I really can't tell if it is windy or not w/o looking for visual indications. There is a slight effect from semis or simular vehicle that can interact with your wake, their wake, and the weather.

Perhaps blue bird installed a tag axle on the PT's for better tracking and stability. Or a means to an end, 42,000 would be allot of weight on 6 tires. A tag axle buys you an extra set of brakes, shocks, and poorer fuel economy.

Don

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Tag axle


Author:
Jeff Blanchard (fuzzy)
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Date Posted: 12/ 31/ 07, 7:27am

Mr Finn i am currently looking at a 1982 bluebird.I live in paducah kentucky and i am an industrial electrician my mechanical skills are mixed the bird is nice but money is the problem i have a wife. Do you think this is a good idea i have $5000 a year in disposable income to maintain this lodge.MY phone # is 270-554-6944 call or email with advice. thanks Jeff....

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Subject: 86 pt front grill and headlight update?


Author:
Marc Kerlikowske
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Date Posted: 12/ 30/ 07, 8:23am

I have an 83 pt 40 that I would like to upgrade to the 86 style front end has anyone done this?

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[> Subject: Re: 86 pt front grill and headlight update?


Author:
AWimbush
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Date Posted: 12/ 28/ 07, 7:21pm

Ummm No one has done this

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[> Subject: Re: 86 pt front grill and headlight update?


Author:
Bob Loomas
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Date Posted: 12/ 30/ 07, 8:23am

http://www.coachcraftbymacdonald.com/
Cotact coach craft they will be able to help you out
on changing the front out

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Subject: primus


Author:
ellis brannam
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Date Posted: 12/ 23/ 07, 5:58pm

i picked up my new (to me) 91 pt40 yesterday. the primus was working fine. when i got home i pushed the first button to turn the system off, but i left the thermostat knob on max temp. this morning when i got to the bus there was clicking sound coming from the primus boiler. i went inside and turned the thermostat knob to the off position. the clicking stopped. i investigated and discovered the reset was tripped in the water line. i reset the relay and tried the system. it started and ran for a while, but then i heard it clicking again. when i try to start it now it only clicks. it sounds like the burner tries to start but as sosn as it does it clicks off. also the yellow wire in the bottom wire connecter to the boiler lights and goes out whe my terst light is on it. if anyone has had this problem please let me know.

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Subject: New BlueBird proud owner at last


Author:
John Wood (snowman (story optional))
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Date Posted: 12/ 18/ 07, 2:33am

After 39 years of laboring at various blue and white collar jobs/positions, I have shopped, located, and purchased my 1st dream 1992 WANDERLODGE. I have surfed your wonderful site for the past few years off and on as I positioned myself in all aspects of my life to aquire a BlueBird and hopefully enjoy. I am 53 yrs. old, single, 1 grown Daughter, pet free, never a smoker, debt free, and looking so forward to snowbirding in southern Florida w/my Bird. I continue to notice that your site is and was updated as recent as yesterday which is such an inspiration/reflection of how dedicated and passionate you and a lot of other Bird lovers are. Hopefully on the road soon and meeting/enjoying company of other owners of these wonderful machines.

John A. Wood
1089 Don Hurley Rd.
Dyersburg, Tn. 38024-7919
johnwood5835@yahoo.com


Thanks for the help with my decisions. "SNOWMAN"

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Subject: Bluebird Value


Author:
Don Dempsey (Still Looking)
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Date Posted: 12/ 14/ 07, 8:51pm

I am hopeing that someone can help me? I have been looking for a Bluebird for a long time. I have came close to getting one several times but just could not work out deal. I have came across another one 1982 unk.miles. Is a lady that has it and the bird has been sitting for approx. 10,12,14 years. It still looks good,(but I know otherwize) We spoke she will sell the Bus to me but she wants me to attempt to see what the bus is worth. It has not run for years it is a diesel. I know her and her husband paid $65000 used. Im affraid she may think its worth somewere near that. Can someone help in comming up with a price fair to her and me. Thanks D.Dempsey

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[> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 11/ 22/ 07, 5:52am

Don, what length is that coach? I paid 67 grand for my coach, used and it sure is not worth that now. Check out the Billboard here and on the birdconnection. You can factor in a few grand for updates- new tires, complete tune up, etc. Where is the coach located? We might know someone that lives close by that could check it out for you.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Don Dempsey (Still Looking)
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Date Posted: 11/ 22/ 07, 9:38pm

The Bird is a 35 foot. I reside in Clayton Delaware. everything on the bird is in place. But like I said, it has been sitting,not run,not moved,not maintained,full of stuff.I just seen the thing sitting and desided to stop and ask about it. It will need a lot of going over. I would not even attempt to try getting it to run untill I went over it and changed all fluids and filters and such. Tires are not flat just low but will need all new. Paint is faided?(spelling). It looks like a good spec.for a restore/or part restore. I dont want to offend her with a low ball price but need something to back my opinion up.Thanks for getting back to me. This has been a long adventure looking for the Bird that I can come close to offord. Thanks again Don

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 11/ 23/ 07, 6:13am

Don, write a note to Ralph Fullenwider. He is a friend and workson birds-- a lot. He knows them from stem to stern. He can probably give you a good idea of its worth.
rlf47@swbell.net

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 11/ 23/ 07, 7:11am

Don, there are a couple of 35 FCs on ebay motors- look under campers/rvs. They are priced in the low 20's. The coach you are looking at should be purchased for a lot lower. Good luck

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Don Dempsey (Still looking)
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Date Posted: 11/ 23/ 07, 9:47am

Mr.Ekberg,
Thanks for getting back to me. I just sent Mr.Fullenwider email. Thanks Don

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[> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
John McGinnis
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Date Posted: 11/ 22/ 07, 2:31pm

Sounds like you need a certified appraisal, that's what I do. Don't rely on NADA, Ebay, or hearsay, you need an appraisal. Seek out a certified equipment appraiser in your area, as well as a knowledgable person on that particular coach to conduct a predelivery inspection. Both the PDI and appraisal would be highly benificial to anyone buying a bird. I can tell you now under no circumstances is a 82 Wanderlodge which has been sitting for 10 -14 years worth anyting compared to a bird that has been run, maintained and used regularly. Heck I know of one coach in Ohio which has been sitting in a garage for nearly 15 years and they think it is work 50K, 15K would be tops. Good luck.

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[> [> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Don Dempsey (Still looking)
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Date Posted: 11/ 22/ 07, 10:04pm

Thanks for getting back to me. Do you know what an appraisal would cost.I just had it in my mind that I was getting one that was going to take a full or part restoration. But the more I think of it,it may not be a bad idea. I was going to offer her between 5to $7000 for the bird. But any ideas from you would help. I dont know of anyone in my area that does appraisals for bluebirds. I was just going to make the offer,see what happens. I have been looking soo long and this one may be in my grasp. Ya I can go out and get any ol motor home in good shape for the money. But when you have a Bluebird your saying something,(ya I know that Might be a lot of work and money but I have been at that place befor. "If it dont come the hard way you will forget about it" Thanks again for getting back to me,any ideas will help. Don

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Judy Kay
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Date Posted: 12/ 9/ 07, 3:48pm

Hey Don- we just had our Bluebird appraised in California and it cost us $158.00. Our insurance agent had a phone number for us to call when I wanted to get an appraisal. Try it-a coach that has been sitting that long is filled with rotten hoses and wires that have to be checked-let alone leaking connections...10-15K might be a stretch.

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
John McGinnis
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Date Posted: 12/ 9/ 07, 5:55pm

Don, where is the bird located, 5 - 7K may be on the light side even with needed repairs. If you are within a reasonable distance I travel for fuel expense, cost of appraisal would be $75 per hour, most bird appraisals take 2 - 3 hours. You get 2 copies of a bound appraisal. Usually our turn around is 7 days depending on our schedule. John 88FC35 Louisville, KY

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[> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Bob Lawrence
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Date Posted: 12/ 9/ 07, 11:51am

Seals are probably dried out.
I would try to convince her that it needed 10-15k of money to get it back up to speed.
I wouldn't offer her more than 20k for it max.
If she got insulted, move on...it will make a nice planter for her.

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[> Subject: Re: Bluebird Value


Author:
Ralph Arnold
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Date Posted: 12/ 14/ 07, 8:51pm

I got a 1981 FC-33 NA CAT 3208 I just bought a 1989 BlueBird 36-SP so I have to sell the old bird. It's been refurbished inside and looks good on the outside. Call me if your interested. Ralph

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Subject: height clearance


Author:
dr van
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Date Posted: 12/ 12/ 07, 12:55pm

can i get a 99 lx into a 12 foot high garage door, can you bleed off suspension air to lower as you drive in or not

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Subject: Starting batteries


Author:
Robert Lindamood (help)
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Date Posted: 12/ 12/ 07, 11:49am

I have a 1999 LXI with a Detroit 60 engine. Within a couple of days the starting batteries are dead when the coach sits. The only way to prevent this is to leave the aux. battery switch on to keep them charged. For the past 3 years I have had to replace all 3 starting batteries on a yearly basis. Is this normal?

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[> Subject: Re: Starting batteries


Author:
Rich D.
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 12/ 12/ 07, 11:49am

Robert,

The battery connect switch should always be "ON" when connected to shore power. This connects the chassis batteries to the house charging system and is the only way to keep them charged while parked. They will otherwise run down in a few days and the life will be drastically reduced. You will note by the LED next to the switch that the batteries are connected when the engine is running too. This way the engine alternator charges the house batteries as well as the chassis batteries.

As an alternative, you can add a Xantrex "Echo-Charger" (about $110.00) which will keep the chassis batteries charged automatically and you won't have to remember to turn the switch on and off. I have one and my '99 is on the second set of chassis batteries and the original set of GEL house batteries which are still going strong.

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Subject: battery wiring.


Author:
chris pozgar (mellow)
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 29/ 07, 6:26am

I undid my batteries sp? on a 1979 wanderlodge. I cant remember how they were! I need a wiring chart??? HELP! Chris.

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Subject: Eliminate Fasco & Martin Thermostats??


Author:
Jerald Peterson
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 27/ 07, 12:32pm

I have a 83FC35RB Wanderlodge. The electricic heaters have thermostats and seem to have a mind of their own. They come on, go off, and sometimes simply refuse to deliver heat. I removed the thermostat on the front Martin and installed an on/off switch. Works fine. Is there any reason that I should not replace the thermostats on these heater? I don't mind turning them on and off when necessary. Staying warm is important to me and the propane heaters are in need of repair. Comments?

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[> Subject: Re: Eliminate Fasco & Martin Thermostats??


Author:
Don
[ Edit | View ]

Date Posted: 11/ 27/ 07, 12:32pm

Usually there will be a thermostat and an over temperature cut out switch wired in series with the heating element. Often the cut out switch will cut in at cooler and cooler temperatures. The cut out switch is a safety device and if failing should be replaced but never bypassed. Just look for a simular rating, example, 105c, 220v, at 10 amps. Any appliance repair shop can hook you up with suitible replacement part. You can safely replace the thermostat with a on/off switch if it is properly rated for voltage and current. If you only replace the thermostat and it now stays on, the cut out switch is OK. I prefer ceramic heater as the heating element typicaly does not get red hot and is less of an ignition source. Hope this helps, Don

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Subject: What to buy?


Author:
Ken Wonderly
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Date Posted: 11/ 22/ 07, 5:49am

We are trying to choose between a 1987 PT-40 listed on the for sale page for $59,500 or a 1993 listed with bird connection.com for $119,900. The drive trains seem to be very similar but the newer coach has all the bells and whistles. My main objective is to have the most dependable coach that will hold up for the next twenty years. The question is - would I be better off buying the older coach and putting another 15 to 20k into it or just buy the newer unit. I don't want the bells and whistles if they are going to drive me crazy with problems.

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[> Subject: Re: What to buy?


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 11/ 21/ 07, 5:35pm

Ken, If I was to buy a coach, there is a 98 available for the price of that 93. It is at the Motorhome Specialists in Alvarado, Tx. A friend I know has driven that coach and it drives out great. If I had that money, that would be my new coach. You get a Series 60 engine and a widebody to boot. Good luck, keep us posted. Ernie

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[> [> Subject: Re: What to buy?


Author:
Ken Wonderly
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Date Posted: 11/ 21/ 07, 11:35pm

I have sent an email to MHS to see if I could get some pictures of the coach. Thier web page shows a 99LX for 129K. I think the LX comes with a Cummings M11. Is this better or worse than the Series 90 DD?

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: What to buy?


Author:
Ken Wonderly
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Date Posted: 11/ 21/ 07, 11:38pm

oops *** Series 60 DD.

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[> [> [> [> Subject: Re: What to buy?


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 11/ 22/ 07, 5:49am

Ken, I thought that the BMCs had the Cummins engine. The Wanderlodges have the series 60. I would not be afraid of either engine.

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Subject: Garage Door Size PT-36


Author:
Douglas Doyle
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Date Posted: 11/ 16/ 07, 9:32pm

Cannot seem to find the measurments for a 95 PT-36. Wanted to see what size garaage door I would need for this coach. Thanks, Doug

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[> Subject: Re: Garage Door Size PT-36


Author:
Douglas Doyle
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Date Posted: 11/ 13/ 07, 11:30pm

That's for a 85 PT-36 Thanks, Doug

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[> [> Subject: Re: Garage Door Size PT-36


Author:
Ernie Ekberg
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Date Posted: 11/ 16/ 07, 5:44am

I'd go with a 14 foot door. 10 or 12 wide would be ideal. Ernie

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[> [> [> Subject: Re: Garage Door Size PT-36


Author:
Douglas Doyle
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Date Posted: 11/ 16/ 07, 9:32pm

Ernie, Thanks for the info. Doug

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Subject: any info on 1970 bluebird's


Author:
shireene zahedi
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Date Posted: 11/ 13/ 07, 1:42pm

Hi there! I'm about to purchase a 1970 bluebird are there any problems I should be aware of ahead of time also, what are the standard "inners" of this lovely craft? Any response would be greatly apprieciated ... thanx, shireene

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Subject: any info on 1970 bluebird's


Author:
shireene zahedi
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Date Posted: 11/ 13/ 07, 1:30pm


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