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Old 04-03-2021, 06:56 PM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Axis 25.6
State: California
Posts: 15
THOR #22407
Exclamation Thor Axis bottom-out warning

Hi,
I have about 5K miles on my 2021 Thor Axis 25.6 and wanted to pass on a word of caution to other owners. Given the tiny wheels / low clearance on these vehicles, they bottom out very easily.

Yesterday, I was pulling out of a shopping center at a very slow speed. There was a dip in the exit that caused the rear end to bottom out - it bent one of the stabilizers (which activated the alarm) and also caught the 1" PVC drain pipe for the water tank, snapping it off. I now have to figure out how to gain access to the tank, and see if this is simply a PVC pipe repair or whether I need a new fresh water tank.

This would have been a non-issue if the PVC pipe didn't protrude 2" below the frame of the vehicle, so I would strongly suggest to all owners that you cut any excess length of your tank drain and the blue/red cold/hot water drains to be flush with your frame so they cannot get caught on the ground in the event of bottoming out; learned this the hard way and hoping I can save some others some pain

Silly that there isn't some sort of frame guard on the back of these vehicles that prevents damage to the stabilizers and drains...

If anybody has advice on how to access the fresh water tank, and/or how to turn off the stabilizer alarm (it thinks the stabilizer is down - don't want to listen to it the entire 500 mile drive home) I would greatly appreciate it!

Thanks, Vic

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Old 04-03-2021, 07:27 PM   #2
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THOR #6826
Quote:
Originally Posted by vealessi View Post
Hi,

I have about 5K miles on my 2021 Thor Axis 25.6 and wanted to pass on a word of caution to other owners. Given the tiny wheels / low clearance on these vehicles, they bottom out very easily.



Yesterday, I was pulling out of a shopping center at a very slow speed. There was a dip in the exit that caused the rear end to bottom out - it bent one of the stabilizers (which activated the alarm) and also caught the 1" PVC drain pipe for the water tank, snapping it off. I now have to figure out how to gain access to the tank, and see if this is simply a PVC pipe repair or whether I need a new fresh water tank.



This would have been a non-issue if the PVC pipe didn't protrude 2" below the frame of the vehicle, so I would strongly suggest to all owners that you cut any excess length of your tank drain and the blue/red cold/hot water drains to be flush with your frame so they cannot get caught on the ground in the event of bottoming out; learned this the hard way and hoping I can save some others some pain



Silly that there isn't some sort of frame guard on the back of these vehicles that prevents damage to the stabilizers and drains...



If anybody has advice on how to access the fresh water tank, and/or how to turn off the stabilizer alarm (it thinks the stabilizer is down - don't want to listen to it the entire 500 mile drive home) I would greatly appreciate it!



Thanks, Vic


Well thatís an adventure for sure. Think your easiest solution to the bothersome alarm would be to find and pull the fuse. Probably you wonít be able to use the system for the rest of your trip. Very sad. If you just broke off the pvc pipe you might be able just glue on an extension. If the tank is still holding water I expect the repair will be simple. Good luck.
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Old 04-03-2021, 07:55 PM   #3
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I don't know which leveling system you have but there is a 12V fuse for the control panel that would kill the alarm if you pulled the fuse.

There is a 100A breaker but that just kills the power to the jacks and then you would also get a low voltage alarm.

The other thing you could do is put the Use / Store switch into the Store mode to kill the 12V to the coach.

That all being said.... make sure you don't have a hydraulic leak from the damage. This would cause low pressure and give you the jacks down alarm. You don't want them dropping while driving because the system won't hold pressure.

Unforuntately, the E-Series chassis is overwhelmed in my opinion with any coach built on it 25' or more. There is too much length, height and weight for the stock suspension. Ground clearance becomes an issues in addition to handling and ride quality.

I had an Outlaw 29H and they had the black tank pipe running under the drive shaft. It was a train wreck waiting for a place to happen. I removed it and setup a separate drain on the passenger side for the black tank becuase I knew one day it would get torn off.
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Old 04-04-2021, 01:12 AM   #4
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That's unfortunate. Hope the damage is an easy fix.

The Vegas and Axis have less "tail" behind the rear wheels than many of the Class C rigs that also have the smaller wheels. My previous Clasa A wae 33 feet in the F53 chassis, and it would drag in places that my Vegas can clear. I learned to take places I might drag at an angle as much as possible.

Personally, I am more concerned about the low clearance below the entry door. There's a learning curve with any RV. Hope you can avoid this problem going forward.
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Old 04-04-2021, 01:20 AM   #5
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Sorry to read about your problem.
But at least you've learned to take these transitions even easier...
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Old 04-04-2021, 03:58 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Mr Sunshine View Post
Personally, I am more concerned about the low clearance below the entry door.
I saw this as an issue when I first bought the Axis and I removed the trim, leaving the metal exposed. Sure enough, I exited a parking lot with a slight rise before it dropped down to the street and drug the step over the asphalt.
Needless to say, I found another route for future trips.

If/when I sell the rig, I will replace the trim.
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Old 04-04-2021, 07:09 PM   #7
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problem found

Well, I spend the morning tearing apart the rear of my Axis 25.6 to find where my water pipe disconnected from the tank - they don't make it easy; it's built like you'll never have to access anything. I started by pulling the lower drawers out, and you can see the top of the tank, but for full access you need to remove the magazine rack. That is held in place by 8 screws that are very hard to access, and have very cheap (strippable) heads on them. I had to push in the lower glued in panels to access the lower screws; guess I will have to glue those back in or find a better way to attach when re-assembling. I used a combination of various length bits with an impact drill to access the screws; they're buried behind the trip top and bottom.

The good news - the workmanship is so shoddy that they didn't glue the drain pipe in properly! The pipe just cleanly pulled out of the elbow and just needs to be re-glued Hopefully I'll be whole again after sandpapering the interior of the joint and re-glueing.

Here's a few pics of that area for those who are interested
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Old 04-04-2021, 07:15 PM   #8
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I'm glad that the damage wasn't any worse!
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Old 04-04-2021, 08:00 PM   #9
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Thanks for the pics, that helps - in the event it ever happens to others.


Were you able to get the "stabilizer down" beeping to stop?

I had a similar issue with the constant beep/tone. It was an adjuster screw at then end of the stabilizer screw-jack that was not hitting the slide-pin sensor to get the dang thing to stop the warning tone.
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Old 04-04-2021, 08:22 PM   #10
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Maybe they didnít glue it just so it would pop out if it hit something. Once itís glued itíll find the weakest point to break next time and it would be a pity if that was the side of the tank!
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Old 04-05-2021, 02:28 AM   #11
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more detail. so I tried glueing the pipe back in and it still leaked Turns out it was cracked on the side I couldn't see. Luckily again, Thor forgot to glue several PVC joints, so I was literally able to just pull all of my plumbing apart. 2nd trip to the hardware store for a new elbow, 1" PVC, glue, and a saw, and I was able to replace everything and hold water.

To answer a few prior questions: No, I don't think they didn't glue it so that it would just 'break free' on impact; Thor clearly missed gluing several joints and the impact did crack the elbow - the correct solution is what I originally posted - don't let the pipe hang down below the frame where it can bottom out on the ground.

As far as the bent stabilizer, I haven't done anything with it yet. it does lower, and touch the ground on an angle. I'm thinking that when I break camp, I am going to try driving forward slightly on it and see if I can bend it back, else pull the fuse and fix when I get home.

Boy, I'm getting quite an onboard tool collection for campsite repairs
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Old 04-05-2021, 07:54 PM   #12
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DH will certainly feel your pain. He did a similar break of our gray water pipe on day 1 1/2 of our last trip out last fall. Came out of a drive too fast. The drive had a dip in the center and sure enough the gray water pipe took a nasty bang. Thank goodness it was "just" the gray water.

Getting access to that low slung beast sure was a bear when he spent half an afternoon on his back to temporarily wire that pipe in place until we got home. Word to the wise: keep a well stocked tool bag. Wire, zip ties, and other fasteners are your friends.

I did get a few photos that we can now laugh about --- just feet and an arm sticking out from under the MH, waiting for a tool hand-of from his silent, able assistant.

We did go ahead with the trip and had to make sure we put a bucket under the break when in camp. Fortunately we were able to get by with just washing dishes once a day and not generating a lot of gray water. What water we did collect was handy for putting out the camp fire. (Not what we would normally do, but what else was there.)

Once we got home, DH spent a day in the farm shop with the MH up on the heavy equipment hoist. He would have been saying lots of words we don't let our children say, were it not for the hoist. The actual fix wasn't that hard, mainly replacing some PVC pipe. Fortunately the tank had not gotten damaged. Indeed he found a few places that lacked proper glue from the factory, but hopefully all is well now.

As you said, drive VERY slowly coming out of drives. Pick you exits carefully. It is far too easy to bottom out. Hope Axis/Vegas owners heed your advice. It can save some serious grief.
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Old 04-05-2021, 09:50 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vealessi View Post
To answer a few prior questions: No, I don't think they didn't glue it so that it would just 'break free' on impact; Thor clearly missed gluing several joints and the impact did crack the elbow - the correct solution is what I originally posted - don't let the pipe hang down below the frame where it can bottom out on the ground.
You have a new coach, did you by any chance confirm with Thor? I would think the odds / theory of you having a coach not glued properly and hitting the low hanging pipe pretty low. Bad design for sure, but if it is drain pipe they may have not had gluing as procedure? Think about it, if you made them repair the damage due to faulty design, their fix for what I am sure they may know as a known issue is a easier fix? Maybe I am giving Thor too much credit, but it would be interesting to know what they say? Just sayin anyway...
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Old 04-05-2021, 10:25 PM   #14
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THOR #22407
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Originally Posted by dkoldman View Post
You have a new coach, did you by any chance confirm with Thor? I would think the odds / theory of you having a coach not glued properly and hitting the low hanging pipe pretty low. Bad design for sure, but if it is drain pipe they may have not had gluing as procedure? Think about it, if you made them repair the damage due to faulty design, their fix for what I am sure they may know as a known issue is a easier fix? Maybe I am giving Thor too much credit, but it would be interesting to know what they say? Just sayin anyway...
I do plan to ask Thor at some point, as I have other warranty issues. When I do, I will post.

Everything WAS glued below the valve (where it doesn't matter); it was a few random connections ABOVE the valve that weren't glued - these are connections that would leak into the bedroom when there is water in the tank, regardless of the valve position, so really hard for me to believe there is reasoning behind it.
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Old 04-05-2021, 11:44 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by vealessi View Post
- these are connections that would leak into the bedroom when there is water in the tank, regardless of the valve position, so really hard for me to believe there is reasoning behind it.
I would agree with this posted statement without Thor. I was referencing the 1" drain pipe that got hit. I assumed it was all underneath and tied to a drain line of some sorts?

How much clearance do you have from flat ground when all things are level? Especially those stabilizers? This post made me go measure mine, my lowest point is front axle which is 6" and that is 100% on Ford ( I added a Safe T Plus which is behind the front axle and has 7" clearance. Winnebago put on the hydraulic levelers, but they are 7" clearance on the front, and 8"clearance on the rear. A dip that would hit 6" would have to be very severe and I would consider taking issue with the insurance company of shopping center.

I can relate to Mr. Sunshine, I do worry about the clearance on the front entry door. It is amazing how lucky I have been to just clear above or not direct hit a curb inline.
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Old 04-06-2021, 12:17 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dkoldman View Post
I would agree with this posted statement without Thor. I was referencing the 1" drain pipe that got hit. I assumed it was all underneath and tied to a drain line of some sorts?

How much clearance do you have from flat ground when all things are level? Especially those stabilizers? This post made me go measure mine, my lowest point is front axle which is 6" and that is 100% on Ford ( I added a Safe T Plus which is behind the front axle and has 7" clearance. Winnebago put on the hydraulic levelers, but they are 7" clearance on the front, and 8"clearance on the rear. A dip that would hit 6" would have to be very severe and I would consider taking issue with the insurance company of shopping center.

I can relate to Mr. Sunshine, I do worry about the clearance on the front entry door. It is amazing how lucky I have been to just clear above or not direct hit a curb inline.
Here's a pic of the freshwater drain pipe hanging down. There's 11" of clearance to the underbody at this spot but that white 1" PVC hangs 2.5" below that, so only 8.5" of clearance; that is why I am going to cut it flush. I measure 13" of clearance to the stabilizer at the back. I also agree with the comment on the entry door - only 7".

I should probably take a pic of the shopping center exit - it wasn't a huge drop, but steep, and very short. It didn't help that I was going straight across into another shopping center, so no turning, -and- it was a busy road; there was oncoming traffic, so I didn't have much time to cross and didn't slow as much (or turn) as I normally would. Maybe a set of rare circumstances, and/or a learning experience for what I need to watch out for. At least I now know how to access my pump / water tank, and it was a $30 fix with some time; could have been worse. While I have everything opened up, I think I will insulate the fresh water tank as a bonus...
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Old 04-07-2021, 04:41 PM   #17
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I have a 2021 Vegas Motorcoach, does anyone know where the Fresh water tank drain is?
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Old 04-07-2021, 04:55 PM   #18
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excellent detailed info on the where the water tank pump are. I have the same design.
What wires are you mentioning here?

Getting access to that low slung beast sure was a bear when he spent half an afternoon on his back to temporarily wire that pipe in place until we got home. Word to the wise: keep a well stocked tool bag. Wire, zip ties, and other fasteners are your friends.
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Old 04-09-2021, 12:28 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellen View Post
I have a 2021 Vegas Motorcoach, does anyone know where the Fresh water tank drain is?
Which model Vegas do you have? My pics are for a 25.6. The fresh water tank is behind the magazine rack, all the way in the rear, and the drain comes down through the exterior bay that houses the black/gray water valves. If you look under your Vegas, you should see a white 1" fresh water drain pipe; the tank is going to be above it.
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Old 04-09-2021, 12:33 AM   #20
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THOR #22407
Quote:
Originally Posted by Judge View Post
I don't know which leveling system you have but there is a 12V fuse for the control panel that would kill the alarm if you pulled the fuse.

There is a 100A breaker but that just kills the power to the jacks and then you would also get a low voltage alarm.

The other thing you could do is put the Use / Store switch into the Store mode to kill the 12V to the coach.

That all being said.... make sure you don't have a hydraulic leak from the damage. This would cause low pressure and give you the jacks down alarm. You don't want them dropping while driving because the system won't hold pressure.

Unforuntately, the E-Series chassis is overwhelmed in my opinion with any coach built on it 25' or more. There is too much length, height and weight for the stock suspension. Ground clearance becomes an issues in addition to handling and ride quality.

I had an Outlaw 29H and they had the black tank pipe running under the drive shaft. It was a train wreck waiting for a place to happen. I removed it and setup a separate drain on the passenger side for the black tank becuase I knew one day it would get torn off.
Hi Judge,

Where is this 100A break that you mention?

I went through breaker / fuse panel below the refrigerator, and tried every breaker and pulled each fuse one at a time, and could not get the alarm to turn off. I also tried turning off all power to the coach by putting in 'store' mode - alarm would not turn off. I then crawled underneath the driver's stabilizer and unplugged the most obvious wiring harness, and got it to turn off...
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