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Old 11-19-2015, 01:29 AM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Palazzo
State: Florida
Posts: 113
New Bigger, More Complex Slide Problem???

Recently our front driver side slide started "misbehaving"! It is not a wall slide. When I extended the slide the front vertical edge of the slide stopped against the front wall of the RV as it should. However, the rear vertical edge of the slide at the top was about 5 inches from the wall and at the base it was 2-3 inches from the wall of the RV. As it approached full extension it started making large metallic "bangs".
I discussed it with Lippert/Schwintek and, while not real interested in my problem, they did refer to it as a vertical misalignment. They said it could be corrected using the procedures in their info pamphlet http://www.lci1.com/assets/content/s...heets/0272.pdf

Today I took it into a local RV shop that i have used i n the past and I have confidence in their ability and integrity.
This afternoon when I stopped by they had some discouraging info that indicated this is a problem that will take several months to fix. The rollers on the slide roll along a metal plate as the slide moves. According to them the plates end before the slide is out, so the last 6-8 inches the rollers are forced over the rough surface of the floor! The motors are stressed and the banging is when the pinon gears are jumping the slots in the rack. They said it was a manufacturing defect and the rollers and roller plates and the in-wall slide motors and the racks on the slide all need to be replaced. 20 to 25 hours once they got the parts which could be a month plus (longer since we are approaching the holidays)!
So I left and went to a doc appointment I had and spent most of the time thinking about what they said. I have not heard of any similar problem on any of these Schwintek slides. It appears this is not so much a Schwintek issue as much as a manufacturing problem. The metal plates the rollers roll on are either too short or placed too far back from the edge. Maybe the rollers are supposed to be sliding in a slot as the slide extends so the roller plates don't need to be long as the RV shop feels they should be!!
I returned after my appointment and we discussed it more. They had not yet contacted Thor as I asked (Ok because I was not gone that long). I am the second owner so I don't expect Thor to cover any of this but I would like their input and I will call them also but figured the RV shop might be able to answer their question better then I!
So my goal with this posting is to find out if others have experience this alleged "manufactures defect" or similar. The Service Writer told me that had seen this problem in one other RV several months ago and she is going to look up the work order and show it to me tomorrow (with appropriate redactions). We both might gain from that experience.
Also, I have seen posted on this forum, I believe, the names of two individuals at Thor that are "slide professionals". I will search for that thread while I curse myself for not copying the info earlier!
Thanx in advance for your help!
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Old 11-19-2015, 01:16 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ournextstop View Post

....cut....

Today I took it into a local RV shop that i have used i n the past and I have confidence in their ability and integrity.
This afternoon when I stopped by they had some discouraging info that indicated this is a problem that will take several months to fix. The rollers on the slide roll along a metal plate as the slide moves. According to them the plates end before the slide is out, so the last 6-8 inches the rollers are forced over the rough surface of the floor! The motors are stressed and the banging is when the pinon gears are jumping the slots in the rack. They said it was a manufacturing defect and the rollers and roller plates and the in-wall slide motors and the racks on the slide all need to be replaced.

....cut....
Did they have an explanation for how the slide worked at all for some time when the motorhome was new?

I haven't seen one apart, but based on what you describe above, I would expect that unless the plate is extremely thin, that when the rollers drop off past the end of the plate (when extending the slide) that it would make some unusual sound that could not have gone unnoticed. More importantly, when retracting the slide, as soon as the rollers get to front edge of plate they would not want to climb back onto plate at all (unless rollers' diameter is much larger than plate thickness).

I would ask more questions trying to understand what is going on.


Please report back on what you find out. I personally have an issue committing to buy a motorhome with a slide for fear that things just like this could happen. It may not be a common failure, but when it happens to you it's a real pain; and one I prefer to avoid.
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Old 11-19-2015, 01:42 PM   #3
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Palazzo
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Thanx for you input. I still have more to learn so what I will say now may change, but they say initially the in-wall motors were able to handle the stress but you can see the damage to the rack where the pinon gear eventually slipped and damaged the rack. That was the loud metallic banging sound we started hearing that caused me to first look more carefully at the slide. The rear edge of the slide may not have been securely against the RV wall for some time but not noticeable.

While we each have to follow our own feelings - I certainly would not eliminate slides from an RV because they might be a problem. Over the last 10-11 years we have owned 4 RVs. This one and the two previous ones had a total of 9 slides and this is the first one that has presented a problem. In one of the RVs we had to replace the refrig, should I avoid RV's with a refrig, in another one the transfer switch went out, should I avoid those with transfer switches!
I do recognize there are some folks that advocate no slides for a variety of reasons and I can respect their decisions. But, for us the slides offer more usable
space and greater comfort so I cannot see us not having one with slides regardless of how this turns out.
I posted this on another forum too and have connected with an owner who has had a similar problem so I am learning from him too!
Thanx again for your interest.
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Old 11-19-2015, 03:38 PM   #4
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My issue with slides is based on personal preferences, and I would not try to convince others of what is best for them. I mostly don't like the way an RV feels to me when slides are in; particularly in living area of motorhomes.

My interest in slide failures (other than because of my technical background) is mostly based on fact that soon I won't have a choice to avoid them, so I might as well learn as much as possible. For instance, this last weekend I had a conversation with a Newmar sales person at an RV show that made a case for why he doesn't like Schwintek technology. On the other hand Schwintek offers some advantages in my opinion. I see pros and cons to both.
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Old 03-31-2016, 05:13 AM   #5
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@ Chance.
I with you on the issues with slides, Where I go fishing the coach must flex due to switch back roads, anything longer than a 26' with slides are asking for troubles costing major "coach bucks".. followed 3 "Mega Coaches" up to the lake...all 3 had major major issues before they got back to civilization.
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Old 08-15-2017, 02:06 AM   #6
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Gemini 24TX (2017)
State: California
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Slides can be a major PITA, unquestionably. I had four huge ones on my last DP, had a few alignment problems with them when the coach was new, then many years of no problems. Our current Gemini, has two, in comparison, tiny slides, critical IMO to providing enough space inside a very small motorhome, to survive. So far no problems with either of these slides. As wary as I am of potential problems with slides, I would not want to not have them. I do think, however, that the full wall slides are probably more problem prone than the smaller ones.
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Old 08-15-2017, 06:48 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Laco View Post
Slides can be a major PITA, unquestionably. I had four huge ones on my last DP, had a few alignment problems with them when the coach was new, then many years of no problems. Our current Gemini, has two, in comparison, tiny slides, critical IMO to providing enough space inside a very small motorhome, to survive. So far no problems with either of these slides. As wary as I am of potential problems with slides, I would not want to not have them. I do think, however, that the full wall slides are probably more problem prone than the smaller ones.

What do you suppose has changed that is making Class Bs more popular than ever, even though the vast majority don't have slides? Somehow owners are surviving in tiny spaces.

The growth rate of Class Bs through June is much higher than that of Class As, suggesting to me that many buyers have different expectations than they did previously.

Slides no doubt add a lot of value for many campers, but at same time manufacturers shouldn't give up on developing new slideless floorplans.
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Old 08-15-2017, 05:49 PM   #8
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Model: Gemini 24TX (2017)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chance View Post
What do you suppose has changed that is making Class Bs more popular than ever, even though the vast majority don't have slides? Somehow owners are surviving in tiny spaces.

The growth rate of Class Bs through June is much higher than that of Class As, suggesting to me that many buyers have different expectations than they did previously.

Slides no doubt add a lot of value for many campers, but at same time manufacturers shouldn't give up on developing new slideless floorplans.
I can only address why we decided to go from a 41 foot DP to our Gemini, which depending on who you talk to is either a B+ or a small C. Our bus was aging, and becoming more and more needy, plus we just got tired of dealing with the size and weight of the bus. Always a problem to store, difficult to park, fuel hungry, and required a lot of planning to go anywhere in it. The downside of the Gemini, is the lack of interior space, but it is so easy to drive, park and store, plus ours, which is on the Mercedes chassis gets 17 MPG highway, not even a distant dream with the bus. Dealer told me, the number of folks downsizing increases every month, they are seeing more and more folks that have done and are doing what we did. There will always be a demand for the big A's, and if you are full timing, or spend months and months in it every year, they are great, but we find ourselves doing more and more shorter trips, both in mileage and time. We are still adjusting to the downsize, but for us it was the right move. as far as slides, we do have two small slides, one in front on the drivers side, and the back slide that goes straight out the back and becomes the bedroom. Not sure we could have done this without the slides.
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Old 08-16-2017, 12:58 AM   #9
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You never mentioned if you tried the alignment procedure or if the dealer did. I wonder how they made the diagnosis that they did.
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Old 08-16-2017, 01:57 AM   #10
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Model: Miramar 34.4
State: Iowa
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When we purchased our Miramar 16 months ago the dealer showed me what he had done to the under side of the slide. He had mounted 4 inch wide hardened aluminum plates to run the depth of the slide where each roller is located. He showed me the ones he removed. None were as long as they should be and all were different lengths. He said it's as if they used scraps. He also said he sees this all the time and got tired of fixing slides and replacing rollers that break due to running off the end of the plates so he checks them all before putting one his lot to sell.
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Old 11-24-2017, 01:54 AM   #11
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
State: Virginia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ournextstop View Post
Recently our front driver side slide started "misbehaving"! It is not a wall slide. When I extended the slide the front vertical edge of the slide stopped against the front wall of the RV as it should. However, the rear vertical edge of the slide at the top was about 5 inches from the wall and at the base it was 2-3 inches from the wall of the RV. As it approached full extension it started making large metallic "bangs".
I discussed it with Lippert/Schwintek and, while not real interested in my problem, they did refer to it as a vertical misalignment. They said it could be corrected using the procedures in their info pamphlet http://www.lci1.com/assets/content/s...heets/0272.pdf

Today I took it into a local RV shop that i have used i n the past and I have confidence in their ability and integrity.
This afternoon when I stopped by they had some discouraging info that indicated this is a problem that will take several months to fix. The rollers on the slide roll along a metal plate as the slide moves. According to them the plates end before the slide is out, so the last 6-8 inches the rollers are forced over the rough surface of the floor! The motors are stressed and the banging is when the pinon gears are jumping the slots in the rack. They said it was a manufacturing defect and the rollers and roller plates and the in-wall slide motors and the racks on the slide all need to be replaced. 20 to 25 hours once they got the parts which could be a month plus (longer since we are approaching the holidays)!
So I left and went to a doc appointment I had and spent most of the time thinking about what they said. I have not heard of any similar problem on any of these Schwintek slides. It appears this is not so much a Schwintek issue as much as a manufacturing problem. The metal plates the rollers roll on are either too short or placed too far back from the edge. Maybe the rollers are supposed to be sliding in a slot as the slide extends so the roller plates don't need to be long as the RV shop feels they should be!!
I returned after my appointment and we discussed it more. They had not yet contacted Thor as I asked (Ok because I was not gone that long). I am the second owner so I don't expect Thor to cover any of this but I would like their input and I will call them also but figured the RV shop might be able to answer their question better then I!
So my goal with this posting is to find out if others have experience this alleged "manufactures defect" or similar. The Service Writer told me that had seen this problem in one other RV several months ago and she is going to look up the work order and show it to me tomorrow (with appropriate redactions). We both might gain from that experience.
Also, I have seen posted on this forum, I believe, the names of two individuals at Thor that are "slide professionals". I will search for that thread while I curse myself for not copying the info earlier!
Thanx in advance for your help!
I just discovered the same problem with my Thor 2014 33sw full wall slide. The rear upper gear was slipping in the rail. No rail damage yet. Started checking for cause and found that the roller plate under the rear most roller was about 2inches too short so the roller was off the plate when fully extended. Furthermore the additional 6 roller plates were also too short when the slide was fully retracted, again rollers off the plates. All of this creates tremendous resistance that the motors and gears must overcome to get the rollers onto the plates thus causing the slipping gears. This is clearly a manufacturing issue. I was able to extend the rear most plate and also shimmed the upper rail one eight of an inch which appears to cause the gears get a better engagement in the rail. Hopefully this will work.
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Old 11-28-2017, 02:56 AM   #12
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Ace 30.2
State: Washington
Posts: 120
Quote:
Originally Posted by ournextstop View Post
Recently our front driver side slide started "misbehaving"! It is not a wall slide. When I extended the slide the front vertical edge of the slide stopped against the front wall of the RV as it should. However, the rear vertical edge of the slide at the top was about 5 inches from the wall and at the base it was 2-3 inches from the wall of the RV. As it approached full extension it started making large metallic "bangs".
I discussed it with Lippert/Schwintek and, while not real interested in my problem, they did refer to it as a vertical misalignment. They said it could be corrected using the procedures in their info pamphlet http://www.lci1.com/assets/content/s...heets/0272.pdf

Today I took it into a local RV shop that i have used i n the past and I have confidence in their ability and integrity.
This afternoon when I stopped by they had some discouraging info that indicated this is a problem that will take several months to fix. The rollers on the slide roll along a metal plate as the slide moves. According to them the plates end before the slide is out, so the last 6-8 inches the rollers are forced over the rough surface of the floor! The motors are stressed and the banging is when the pinon gears are jumping the slots in the rack. They said it was a manufacturing defect and the rollers and roller plates and the in-wall slide motors and the racks on the slide all need to be replaced. 20 to 25 hours once they got the parts which could be a month plus (longer since we are approaching the holidays)!
So I left and went to a doc appointment I had and spent most of the time thinking about what they said. I have not heard of any similar problem on any of these Schwintek slides. It appears this is not so much a Schwintek issue as much as a manufacturing problem. The metal plates the rollers roll on are either too short or placed too far back from the edge. Maybe the rollers are supposed to be sliding in a slot as the slide extends so the roller plates don't need to be long as the RV shop feels they should be!!
I returned after my appointment and we discussed it more. They had not yet contacted Thor as I asked (Ok because I was not gone that long). I am the second owner so I don't expect Thor to cover any of this but I would like their input and I will call them also but figured the RV shop might be able to answer their question better then I!
So my goal with this posting is to find out if others have experience this alleged "manufactures defect" or similar. The Service Writer told me that had seen this problem in one other RV several months ago and she is going to look up the work order and show it to me tomorrow (with appropriate redactions). We both might gain from that experience.
Also, I have seen posted on this forum, I believe, the names of two individuals at Thor that are "slide professionals". I will search for that thread while I curse myself for not copying the info earlier!
Thanx in advance for your help!
This is going to cost a fortune to fix if you let a rv repair shop fix it. Waiting months to get the parts and fix it is a joke. After mine sat at a shop for almost 3 months to get the slide fixed then the other end of the slide broke after our first trip out I fixed it myself. Call Lippert your self and order the rails and new bearing blocks. It took 3or 4 days to get mine shipped to me. If the plates are to short you will be better of ordering the same size and butt the plate up to the old one making it long enough. You are going to need new bearing blocks because they are the reason why the slide is out on the bottom and tight on the top. I put a bushing in the lower bearing block and it has been perfect since. It only took 2 of us 8 hours to replace both end and made it better.
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