Bus Conversions dot Com Bulletin Board
October 20, 2014, 04:35:14 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: 500 Members as of May 5th, 2006.  Smiley  3,499 Members as of October 21, 2012 Cheesy

   Home   Help Forum Rules Search Calendar Login Register BCM Home Page Contact BCM  
Pages: 1 [2] 3 4   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Undercarriage shop along I-20 corridor?  (Read 5835 times)
Blacksheep
Guest

« Reply #15 on: January 25, 2009, 08:27:37 PM »

Sean I second what Bob says and I repeat what I said earlier! The shop here in Lakeland (where it is now warm) can probably replace the arm but on the other hand, I have a close friend who is a certified welder and fabricator and I haven't seen anything yet that he wasn't able to make from scratch or fix. I'm talking intricate stuff that is used in the food industry and medical industry! All that stff has to be within certain tolerances and he's just plain good! He has all the machine shop equipment to fabricate anything in this world. You design it, he can build it!
I can show him the picture and see what he has to say about straightening it or ask the bus shop about replacing it!
As far as removing all your electronics? Not necessary as Bob again has stated! Depends on where you put the ground!

Ace
Logged
Sean
Geek.
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2553


'85 Neoplan Spaceliner "Odyssey"


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #16 on: January 25, 2009, 08:43:20 PM »

OK, Hobie and Bob, I'm willing to talk to someone about straightening it out.  Do you have any recommendations?  (My first choice is still to replace it, though.)

In regards to welding, yes, I am serious.  Replacing a DDEC ECM, complete with programming, is north of $3K.  I think the ATEC ECU is similar.  Likewise I won't take chances with the LCD TV (~$800), the Silverleaf ($1,500), the file server (cheap, but the data isn't), the backup camera and monitor, etc. etc..  Even when the clamp is right next to the work, the sheer amount of current involved can send stray currents into all sorts of weird places, and there are myriad horror stories of expensive electronic controls being wiped out by welding that, by all rights, should not have done so.  And, while almost every welder will tell you it's not a problem, no welding shop I've ever been in will reimburse you for connected electronics that get destroyed.  So, no, I won't let anyone weld on the coach until I've disconnected everything first. YMMV, as they say.

-Sean
http://OurOdyssey.BlogSpot.com
« Last Edit: January 25, 2009, 09:13:49 PM by Sean » Logged

Full-timing in a 1985 Neoplan Spaceliner since 2004.
Our blog: http://OurOdyssey.BlogSpot.com
VanTare
Guest

« Reply #17 on: January 25, 2009, 08:46:41 PM »

I'll go with Sean on this the Germans use a lot of Ductile iron in most of their casting and me I would worry about what type metal you are dealing with here before cutting and heating and trying to straighten      


David
« Last Edit: January 25, 2009, 08:50:09 PM by VanTare » Logged
rv_safetyman
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2199


Jim Shepherd


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #18 on: January 26, 2009, 06:27:08 AM »

Several folks have mentioned the word casting.  From Sean's photo, this is clearly a fabricated part and not a casting.

It also appears to be a fabricated from rectangular tubing.  A good frame shop can straighten the part with no problem.  They align "straight" axles of semis by bending the axle, no problem.

However, the tubing is deformed.  There is no way to repair that deformation, short of some cutting and welding.  The deformation does not seem to be a strength issue, as Sean has been traveling for two years with the bent arm.  It is not obvious to me whether this part of the structure is in compression or tension when the tire encounters a bump (picture climbing a curb).  If it sees mostly tension (leading arm of the A frame), I would go for the straightening process (will not require any welding), have the tag and front wheels aligned and call it good.  That way you avoid a lot of parts chasing (sounds like a real issue with that bus) and replacement labor.

Any good large truck alignment shop should be able to do the work if they have a pit so that they can get under the part with their large port-a-power. 

Not sure how many large truck shops can do a multi-axle alignment.  A good shop with "experienced"  (read old Wink) mechanic can do the tag axle alignment by setting up string lines along the bus side to get the toe-in correct and then put the gauges on to check the camber (since it does not turn, there is no way, or need, to check caster).   That brings up a point.  Sean, I hope you have the alignment specs for the bus.  DO NOT let a shop apply some other vehicle specs to your bus!!!  This is especially true on the front, where caster specs can vary depending on the design and can really make a HUGE difference in steering quality.

Jim
Logged

Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
’85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog:  http://rvsafetyman.blogspot.com/
Sean
Geek.
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2553


'85 Neoplan Spaceliner "Odyssey"


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #19 on: January 26, 2009, 06:36:38 AM »

...   That brings up a point.  Sean, I hope you have the alignment specs for the bus.  DO NOT let a shop apply some other vehicle specs to your bus!!!  This is especially true on the front, where caster specs can vary depending on the design and can really make a HUGE difference in steering quality.


Jim,

Actually, no, we don't have the specs.  I've come up empty every time I've tried to get them.

The last time we had it aligned, right after the incident which bent the axle, the shop had the specs in the computer for a Neoplan three-axle Cityliner, and we used those, which ought to be close.

That said, I can't rule out that the tire wear problems we've had on the steer axle are due to improper alignment settings.  I will say, though, that we have not had any handling problems -- the coach tracks and corners well at all speeds.

-Sean
http://OurOdyssey.BlogSpot.com
Logged

Full-timing in a 1985 Neoplan Spaceliner since 2004.
Our blog: http://OurOdyssey.BlogSpot.com
John316
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 3251

MCI 1995 DL3, DD S60, Allison B500.




Ignore
« Reply #20 on: January 26, 2009, 06:41:00 AM »

Man Sean, I hope that you get this figured out soon!!! I know that those tires are very expensive. We just put four Michelin XZA's on our drives, and that was pricey enough. Let alone going through them...

Well I don't have any suggestions for you...Sorry. I just wanted to let you know that you I can understand your pain.

God bless,

John
Logged

MCI 1995 DL3. DD S60 with a Allison B500.
VanTare
Guest

« Reply #21 on: January 26, 2009, 06:51:49 AM »

Jim I used the term "casting"  because some of their tubing is a cast along with some plate steel that is cast and then rolled Ductile can formed one time by bending depending on the grade but most will not bend back to the original shape without breaking. Ductile can be fabricated just like any steel some can even be cut with a torch .So I would be very careful or he could be sitting in a shop for a long period of time somewhere he doesn't want to be.  my 2 pennies worth    

David
« Last Edit: January 26, 2009, 06:54:03 AM by VanTare » Logged
Hobie
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 228




Ignore
« Reply #22 on: January 26, 2009, 06:57:09 AM »

Of course new is best option.  

Doubt the arm is cast as the photo shows a dent--hollow tubing.  So it could be re-bent.  

I would favor straighting over cutting and sectioning in a new piece.  Most likley, the damage has pulled the other side of the A frame tweaking it a little so you would still need to check that alignment prior to final welding in a new section.  

Straighting would be just the reverse action of what caused the damage.  He will chain and block all ends of the arm and pull down using a ram at the high point.  A torch would be used to gently heat the center while it is under pressure.   The metal should only be heated to a very faint dull orange-- at most.  Just a small localized area.  Red hot is too much and will weaken the structure.  

While this is taking place he will be checking frame alignment points and comparing it to the other side.  This is what is used when factory specs aren't available.  There are special gauges that are attached to the frame and simply put provide a reference point to measure and check for squareness and parallelogram in 3 dimensions.

I suggest asking custom body shops for a good frame guy.  Best of success.

Logged
rv_safetyman
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2199


Jim Shepherd


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #23 on: January 26, 2009, 07:10:42 AM »

David, the word ductile is used to describe a cast iron material.  This is clearly not a casting made of cast iron.   Looking at the part that is attached to the tube, it sure looks like it is welded to the tube and I can't conceive that any factory would make a part from a casting that has parts welded to it.  Castings are not normally used in suspension parts.  They use forged parts, but not cast parts that I am aware of.

Sean, I too am concerned about the front tire cupping.  The last time you had the bus aligned, I assume they checked for excessive wear on the suspension parts and that is not part of the problem.  I would doubt that the tag alignment would cause any significant problems with front tire cupping.

On my Eagle, I had some pretty significant cupping on some new tires.  I had set the wheel bearings on the max clearance side (probably a bit more, since I have a phobia about running tapered bearings with too little clearance).  When I took the bus in for an alignment check, they commented that the wheel bearings were loose.  I took the bus home and re-set the bearings to minimum clearance and the new tires have been wearing very well ever since.  

Jim

« Last Edit: January 26, 2009, 07:14:53 AM by rv_safetyman » Logged

Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
’85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog:  http://rvsafetyman.blogspot.com/
VanTare
Guest

« Reply #24 on: January 26, 2009, 07:29:37 AM »

Jim I know what the word ductile means we used over 300 tons last year in the manufacture of packaged sewerage treatment plants, tubing, sheets and pipe.This guy is dealing with a German product here not an American and FWIW the ZF suspensions have cast products in the suspension.It is his bus and I am sure he will do what he thinks is best so I won't make any more comments about the matter   

David
Logged
Busted Knuckle
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 6447


6 Setras, 2 MCIs, and 1 Dina. Just buses ;D


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #25 on: January 26, 2009, 07:38:59 AM »

Sean,
Hobie and the guys are right. I don't know why I didn't think of this sooner other than the fact that I knew you had a replacement A frame and that you preferred to go that route!
Now if your willing to detour as far as Ft. Smith, AR there is a Frame & Spring shop there that does awesome work! I had a brand new '99 Freightliner back in '98-99 that kept wearing the steer tires, and always pulled to the left. I had it "aligned 12 times in 5 different dealers and they always said it "was right on specs". Well someone recommended the Ft. Smith shop and I took it to them. They had it in the shop less than 30 mins before they told me that the axle it self was out of "spec". Well they explained that it was with in Freightliners spec, but not the axle manufacturer's specs. An hour later I was on the road with the axle bent to spec and it drove better than ever before (quit eating tires too!)! FWIW HTH Grin  BK  Grin
Logged

Busted Knuckle aka Bryce Gaston
KY Lakeside Travel's Busted Knuckle Garage
Huntingdon, TN 12 minutes N of I-40 @ exit 108
www.kylakesidetravel.net

Grin Keep SMILING it makes people wonder what yer up to! Grin (at least thats what momma always told me! Grin)
VanTare
Guest

« Reply #26 on: January 26, 2009, 07:48:46 AM »

Sean the # for the shop in the Midland area is 432-337-7315 and they have a frame shop but I doubt if they will try to straighten a  A frame but you never know   

David
Logged
Paul
Full Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 136


Will it ever be done?


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #27 on: January 26, 2009, 09:47:42 AM »



www.josamusa.com
Logged

Paul
http://www.incredibus.com
1988 MCI 102A3 /8V92 /740 /10" Roof Raise
bobofthenorth
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 2092



WWW

Ignore
« Reply #28 on: January 26, 2009, 10:13:04 AM »

You are 100% right Sean - its your coach and your money so you do what you think is best.  And I wouldn't presume to argue electric theory with you because I am sure you have forgotten more than I will ever understand.  However, for anyone else who is reading this thread I will say this from a simple farm boy's perspective:

Electricity needs two things - a place to be from and a place to go to.  It will take the easiest path between those two places every time.  Now if we were talking about 1000s of volts and 1000s of amps (think lightning) then all bets are off because the pathway may not be big enough between the two places.  But we aren't talking about that.  We're talking about 20-30 volts and at the upper end 200 amps.  At that range a clean ground and clean welds is absolutely all that is required.  The more anal among you might want to throw the main disconnects or even the main breakers in the panels but nothing more is required.
Logged

R.J.(Bob) Evans
1981 Prevost 8-92, 10 spd
My website
Our weblog
Simply growing older is not the same as living.
Sojourner
Jesus Love You!
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 894


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #29 on: January 26, 2009, 01:00:01 PM »

Of course new is best option.  

Doubt the arm is cast as the photo shows a dent--hollow tubing.  So it could be re-bent.  

I would favor straighting over cutting and sectioning in a new piece.  Most likley, the damage has pulled the other side of the A frame tweaking it a little so you would still need to check that alignment prior to final welding in a new section.  

Straighting would be just the reverse action of what caused the damage.  He will chain and block all ends of the arm and pull down using a ram at the high point.  A torch would be used to gently heat the center while it is under pressure.   The metal should only be heated to a very faint dull orange-- at most.  Just a small localized area.  Red hot is too much and will weaken the structure.  

While this is taking place he will be checking frame alignment points and comparing it to the other side.  This is what is used when factory specs aren't available.  There are special gauges that are attached to the frame and simply put provide a reference point to measure and check for squareness and parallelogram in 3 dimensions.

I suggest asking custom body shops for a good frame guy.  Best of success.

If I may add to the above post. Remove the tire/rim. The compound/concave section is to be cut out so it can be straighten much easier and weld 1 ˝ inch wide flat mild steel stock to both side and about 3" beyond the cutout and flat stock bottom of both side of new metal. Thickness should be same as the cutout piece. Otherwise, if you re-straighten without remove the damage section…it can change to dimension of the location between the pivot points.

A good heavy truck frame shop can do all the above work and the alignment job.

This is a minor work for them to handle. No need to go the long route to replace for new one unless it broken into two or ends are worn out. And hopeful if you have it R&R "A" frame that they have no problem getting the pin in without binding.

The bottom-line is to have all the welded portion anneals by torch heat until it reach to dull red and cool slowly. That to relieve all stresses points.

Sojourn for Christ, Gerald
Logged

http://dalesdesigns.net/names.htm
Ps 28 Blessed be the LORD, because he hath heard the voice of my supplications. The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him
Pages: 1 [2] 3 4   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!