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tireman9

Slide On New Coach... Yes Or No?

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I understand that most people want a slide and the value of used RVs with slides is better than those without but based on the munber of posts here and on other RV forums it appears that almost no RV assembler knows how to design a slide that won't cause problems and have expensive repairs needed.

Why can't someone get their act together and come up with a slide system that doesn't leak or stop working or even worse slide out when you don't want it to as I read about on recent recall.

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Tierman!

All your questions are kind of manufacture and owner caused faults.

The hydraulic operated slides should come with anchor points fastened to the frame system and matching point on the slides. Then there are cables or rods with turnbuckles to keep the slides in place while traveling down the road. Do the owners remember to?

The electric slide driven system often have issues with the control boards failing, sometimes the motors fail. IMHO this is often caused by exceeding the load limit(s) on the slides.

The cable operated system cables brake and again the load limits have been exceeded.

The coach builders / point of sail often fail to point out this factor and other times the owners do not read the information supplied by the builders.

Regarding the leaks - this problem is often caused by dirt getting between the seal surfaces and the seals not being cleaned and lubricated.

There is also times when the slides are not squared up / adjusted well before being shipped and that problem also happens during a repair at times.

The key is in the details and how owners use the storage space both inside the slide area and the storage area outside in the pods / bays.

Rich.

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My two cents. An older 45' Prevost conversion with no slides would be fine with me. Just don't have the dough. It is probably difficult to find newer units without them.

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I have had coaches with and without. I will never go back to a coach with no slides. Remember on forums you only hear about problems, you never hear about the thousands of coaches that work perfectly.

Bill

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First, Glad the FMCA computers are back on line.

Second re slides. It sure would be nice if RV companies made information on type and details of slides available to potential buyers.

I think I understand the different types of systems i.e. hydraulic vs gear drive and single motor vs dual. With some research I might even be able to make an informed purchasing decision but since the RV companies seem to have zero interest in providing information on the mechanical aspects of their products and appear to want to keep us "Blinded by the Bling" I guess we will just have to take our chances and if there are problems simply blame the RV company for their poor design and purchasing decisions and make broad brush recommendations to others to stay away from Company X.

Not the best way to build a loyal or supportive customer base.

To me this would be like Ford & Chevy refusing to provide information on their chassis having disk or drum brakes or having power or manual steering.

My experience with a few salesmen at a couple of dealerships makes me wonder if they are much more than glorified order takers. Now there probably are a few sales people that take pride and an interest is what they sell but I just haven't met any.

I think I will do a bit of research on product knowledge at Madison and ask the representatives a couple of questions.

Seems like the posters here are more knowledgeable that the salesmen I have met. If you were going to ask two questions about slides, what would they be?

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Slides I don't need ..Are they a headache yes,, leak ? yes Jam , Yes .Plus a thousand more problems to numerous to mention . Give me good solid leakproof walls Len

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I always follow the KISS philosophy: Keep It Simple Stupid. I had a slide in an earlier motorhome, and it leaked both water and air, and believe me, I take care of my motorhome. The water leak was sporadic, depending on whether the rain was driving or not. Leaking air was only noticeable in cold weather. We now have a Nexus Phantom 28P (30 ft.)--no slides, no jacks, no problems--plenty of room for two + dog or dining for four. Oh, and I am also a minimumalist. I've seen what my friends jam into every nook and cranny. I'd rather carry a spare tire than 6 chairs, a cornhole board, enough extension cords to wire Amazon, etc. Another "oh": We use the campground facilities except to pee--makes tank-cleaning much more pleasant.

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We've owned 3 coaches with slides and a 5W trailer as well, both hydraulic and rack & pinion types.. Have had very few problems specifically related to slide design, but definitely not zero problems. Like most electro-mechanical "improvements", things can occasionally go wrong. I suppose it's possible to design a submarine or aircraft quality slide, but even those need constant preventive maintenance to be failsafe. Overall, though, I'm satisfied with the cost/benefit ratio of RV slides.

In general, though, RVs in general are not that great on reliability and could certainly be better designed. And not always at much greater expense either.

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This is our second coach, 1st no slides this one two slides. We searched for a DP with no slides...no such luck. Now I have two and one leaked the other day. The seals do not unflold all the way when the slide goes out so I think that caused the leak, I now have to carry a ladder so I can manually unfold the seals once they are open.

We do not spend much time inside or parked so we do not need them, just more hassles.

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I am an avid boondocker and spend a LOT of time in the southwest and mostly boondocking 20 miles from nowhere. We greatly enjoy our lifestyle and occasionally join groups out in the desert doing the same lifestyle.

We do not see many slide units boondocking and it is probably due to the fact that the WIND really blows sometimes, and when it does, it picks up loose sand and drives it into everything. We can get sand drifts a couple of feet high in a big blow.

Slides seem to have a lot of holes and places for the wind, sand, and did I mention RAIN to get in when the slides are out. I have been in quite a few slide units over the years during big blows and storms and have had the **** scared out of me occasionally.

There is apparently a rain awning on top of a lot of slides and when the wind got ahold of one that I was sitting in, it sounded like a herd of horses ran across the roof of the rig. Scared the owner too.

On another occasion, we were in a four slide unit and the wind was blowing just off broadside when the whole rig raised up on the windward side and raised the coach to what we thought was its maximum suspension height. Thank goodness the fat guys were on the windward side, so we didn't roll over.

As I understand it, the addition of slides increases the structural weight significantly of any rig that has them. As a fulltimer, I need all the cargo carrying capacity that I can get and therefore slides are not in my future.

I try to be a helpful guy when the situation arises. I have helped quiite a few people in situations where they put the slide out for lunch or whatever and it would not go back in, to travel mode. They were stuck until it got fixed.

The worst one was probably the guy who pulled off in a scenic viewpoint on I-70 westbound, about 60-70 miles west out of Green River, UT. He had lunch with the slide out and had been there for three days trying to find a solution to the problem. No cell service their either. I tried to assist but it was beyond my abilities to solve it. I have no idea how long he had to stay in that scenic turnout.

The initial purchase price of my motorhome had a lot to do with whether or not I purchased a slide unit. Slides were going to cost me many thousands of dollars more and on top of that in 2000 the prices were going crazy. I settled for a 1996 Foretravel U-270/36 and have not looked back.

We can entertain 8, dine with four, and sleep 2. I don't much care for groups bigger than that.

So, would I buy a slide unit in the future? The answer is NO, because with the ever increasing cost of things, I probably couldn't handle the operational expense with my current portfolio.

If you boondock, I suggest that you think about it long and hard before you purchase a slide.

Regards,

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My two comments on slides:

1. I will never have another with the Newmar style "automatic" slide locks. The only thing automatic is that they automatically do whatever they want or don't want to do. I've got one slide that the locks go into the locking position when the slide gets out.....and another that won't open unless I push the button and go beat the mechanism with my hand during the "5 second delay".

2. I will never buy another coach with slides that does not have a built in, factory, manual emergency retract system without having to crawl into the cargo bay on my back or lay on top of the bed frame with large wrenches and break huge torque lock nuts loose on the slide motor axle so I can crank on it with a wrench.

I had a diesel 2002 Bounder that had a flip latch motor brake right on the end of the slide motor. If something went wrong with the motor or switch you could flip that brake lever and 2 or 3 guys could push that big slide in manually.

On the plus side....I don't think I could live in a coach for extended periods without a couple of slides.

Mel

'05 Dutch Star 4009 & '11 Jeep Grand Cherokee

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I am an avid boondocker and spend a LOT of time in the southwest and mostly boondocking 20 miles from nowhere. We greatly enjoy our lifestyle and occasionally join groups out in the desert doing the same lifestyle.

We do not see many slide units boondocking .......

We boondock a lot too and we rarely see RV's WITHOUT slides. Only very small rigs and older rigs we see are slide-less. In the desert out west we see hundreds of rigs and almost all have slides.

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Been RV'ing for 20 years now, 6 of those years were full time. 6 class A buses, 2-5th wheels and a class B. Three have been new, high end coaches with multiple slides. All but the high end 5th wheel were basically junk. Slides leaked on all of them or did not work properly. I've met a lot of people on the road, and I can tell you that the majority of them have had slide problems. I finally got so fed up with it , that I sold my last new unit, a 2012 model with 4 slides, and bought a 1989 Bluebird Wanderlodge with no slides. I should have done this many years ago. It would have saved a lot of aggravation. Slides are nice, as they give you a lot more room, but most people don't spend much time in the rig when they are parked anyway. I would never have a unit with a slide again.

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We enjoy our slides and yes a few problems. Over all, we want slides but would pay extra for better slides. The better slide better work!

I might have brake problems at factory if we paid for crap again.

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We have a 2000 Itasca Horizon that we've had for 15 years now and the 2 slides that have the hydraulic actuating system have been "bullet proof" from day one.

The slides have never created a problem for any other system in the coach. We live in the coach 5 months out of each year and with 2 cats would never buy a new coach without slides.

****

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Wow! This scares me. We have just purchased a 2015 Allegro/ 4 slides. I was a little leary of the number of slides, but this is my 3rd RV with slides and have never experienced a bit of trouble. We have always been very careful how we load and the Walk through Tech warned us not to stop the slide before it was completely opened or shut.

What are your recommendations as to purchasing an insurance dealing with the slides? Is repair on them pricey enough to warrant the cost of the insurance? How often have you had problems? Is this a one time thing or is it reoccurring?

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I never had a slide coach but many of my friends do. I guess there are folks who need and want slides. We never did and every time we have to help a fellow traveler with his slides, we are glad we do not have them. 1995 Bluebird Wanderlodge.

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popatop,

Welcome to the FMCA Forum!

The real key to having slides is understanding there is a load limit. That varies form slide to slide and different manufactures. This item is not covered well in the owners manuals or buy the point of sale personal.

The other item is the maintenance of the operating system and the weather seals.

Rich.

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We have only owned two motor homes over the 15 years we have been Motor homing. The first was a 34' class A without slides (in which we full-timed for a little over a year and a half). Had it from 2000-2011. It was time to get another one, and I wanted to get one with a slide, and my wife said she could do just fine without one. Well, I won the discussion, and we got on with a large living room-dining room slide. Now she would never go back. We haven't had any problems with the slideout. No leaks or mechanical problems. I have said that with out slides or with the slideouts in, you are in a Motor Home. When you deploy the slide(s) you are now in an apartment. We love the slide and wouldn't have a MH without one.

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Our first coach, a 1994 Monaco Dynasty had no slides. We purchased our present coach with two slides and have been delighted with the additional space they provide. In a coach with no slides movement within the coach involves compromise.

As with anything, there are compromises. Our pantry is behind the large slide when the slide is in. Louise is good a planning our needs and getting things out of the pantry for meals on the road. We were full time for seven years in this coach and the slides have been in and out many times. There have also been periods each winter and a few longer stays where the slides were out for extended periods of time. We have had very few problems over the years. We had an leak in the smaller bedroom slide which was fixed under warranty. A later adjustment of the positioning of that slide was done at a repair shop and that was the last problem we have had with that slide. The larger living area slide has performed flawlessly. It has never leaked and has never failed to move when commanded except as described below.

Our slides are driven by electric motors which are geared and interface with toothed channels on each slide. There are physical means to bring in the slides but they are not easy or convenient. It would be a last resort to mechanically retract the slides but it could be done. This spring I had electrical problems with the coach as we were ready to depart on our summer travels. The slides were out and with no electric (neither 12V nor 120V) we weren't able to travel to a repair shop to fix the electric. Fortunately, I was able to identify the problem as a failure (meltdown) of the main house battery cutoff switch. I bypassed the switch and we had the electric that we needed. Had I not been able to resolve the electrical problem we would have delayed our departure until a mobile repair service could identify and solve the electrical problem for us. I would have tackled the physical retraction if absolutely necessary.

Regarding the additional weight, we have had no problem. It may be a problem with some coaches, depending on many other factors including the type of chassis that supports the coach. We traveled for years full-time and were well within the GVWR for our coach.

Given our experience with slides, I would purchase another Monaco coach with slides. If I were looking at a different manufacturer I would have to be satisfied with the operation of the system. If the sales representative can't answer your questions, ask for the manual and read the section on the operation of the slides. Sales representatives can only know so much about each coach. If you sell a variety of models and/or from different manufacturers and systems change each year, it becomes very difficult to be completely knowledgeable on all aspects of these very complex vehicles.

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I have had motorhomes with and without slides. This last motorhome does not have slides. I thought I would miss them as I did have them before but I found you get used to the space provided and I am quite comfortable with no slides. I went from a 2001 42 foot Monaco Signature (I thought I was done with motorhomes but the devil made me get another one) to a 1994 40 foot Monaco Executive and I must say the 1994 is a great driving coach. My last coach is the same as my first diesel coach with three in between.

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popatop.

Welcome!

Cummins Coach Care, services a lot more than just engines and generator. I take mine in every 15,000 miles or 1 year, whatever comes first. As long as you keep the components serviced as recommended by the owners manual....you'll have no problems.

Gremlins are everywhere, so take them as they come, especially on a new coach!

Enjoy the ride

Carl

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