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Jack Mayer

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About Jack Mayer

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    Founding Partner, RVH Lifestyles, an HDT design, build, consult company specializing in all aspects of Heavy Duty Trucks. RVHLifestyles.com

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  1. I would doubt that the desiccant cartridge would be the culprit. But if you have not changed it you should.
  2. While it is accurate that not all bands are supported, for the most part it should operate acceptably. I'm probably going to buy one as well, knowing that it is somewhat of a compromise. But nothing really acute. As a frame of reference, our Homebase - which is the original - also does not have all the bands. This can limit my speed in "certain" situations. But frankly, for just browsing and not heavy duty speed requirements, it really does not matter if I have 20 mbps or 40 mbps. Both are acceptable. In a particular set of circumstances it may be that the device is not optimal. And also consider its lifetime. I expect to replace it within 2 years.
  3. Roger I don't believe I ever said a hitch could not be put on a smart 435. I DID say a hitch was not available for the 453. And I did say that a second bung was not on the back or front, even under the body panel. At the time the hitch statement was true - I don't know if that is still the case. Your fab shop built one, David Henegar built at least two, and I know of at least two others that have personally built one. I know of no one that has a business installing these...although you indicate your shop would do it. We won't, simply because it is too expensive to do "one off" jobs like that. If someone made a kit, we probably would do it. We do install the missing bung on the back of the car so that you can winch identically to a 451. We routinely do this job and it is not hard to do, assuming you have the skills. You can get some extra utility, if it is valuable to you, by having a hitch fabricated. You can winch from a hitch or from the crossbar between the bungs. Either works - it just depends on what you need. As far as driving the car up, that is a personal decision. Done CORRECTLY it does not "seem" to harm the clutch. But if you sit on the ramps and rock back and forth using the throttle (even a little) then you obviously are straining the clutch. You MUST either back down or properly use the handbrake. Even using the handbrake is not optimal - it is best to go up the ramps in one smooth motion. If you have to stop then it is always "best" to start over, although proper use of the handbrake is the second best scenario. That is just the way it is. Some people do not wish or like to drive up. Nothing wrong with that....I was one of them for a LONG time. I don't think it can be disputed that winching is safer. I've probably driven my 453 or others up on a deck hundreds of times. I've never really smelled the clutch if I was simply driving it on and not experimenting. I HAVE smelled the clutch when experimenting with the car partially up the ramps. Which is why I try not to do that.
  4. I suppose I'm not allowed to guess....but I'd probably get one of them correct.....
  5. I don't see how you will get a "real" fade from vinyl. Paint will give a better result if the artist is skilled. Just my opinion. I'm sure anything you do will look good.
  6. The ramps will enter destructive testing shortly. The computer has already "destroyed" them through Finite Element Analysis. It will be "fun" to destroy some aluminum. I think.
  7. Jack Mayer

    Discount Ramps

    Me too, Phil.....we must have the same problem!!!
  8. Jack Mayer

    Discount Ramps

    They used to but not anymore. They also used to have free shipping, but not anymore. They also used to sell the ramps for $689, but not anymore. Get the trend? To be fair, at the price of aluminum these days, I can see why. We are moving to our own ramp line because of this. It won't be a lot cheaper, but it will be the way WE want them to be. And we will have some control.
  9. On a newer DPF truck there is not usually room to mount a "real" genset under the cab. We usually only have 22" of space for our APUs and in some cases less. There may be room to squeeze in some Honda 2000-style units. Every truck is different - just measure and see. Then you can build a custom rack as shown. We can build a custom drom that has an Onan in the bottom and storage above. But it takes more space depth-wise than a typical drom and you have to plan your deck spacing around it. That has the advantage of leaving side box space on your bed - which is more accessible and usable than drom space.
  10. Jack Mayer

    back up Camera system

    I've personally used at least a dozen different systems over the years on various projects. There are many, many systems out there. A lot of them work for awhile then die or have issues. The prices vary wildly, but I've found the super cheap ones do not last. We use Rear View Safety products in our business. We settled on that as the "best" commercial system. It is intended for commercial applications - trucks, busses, cruise ships, etc. It is pretty robust and not terribly more expensive than some of the other systems. In fact, it is cheaper than some. We use it because it is reliable and flexible. It may not be the best choice for everyone - if you are a super-budget shopper then you won't want this.
  11. Yeah, there is simply NO comparison. My 550 was VERY hard to park a rig with, relative to the 610. Night and day difference with the same trailer in the same parks. For the reason Lance A Lott stated - hitch behind the axle makes all the different in the world. MDTs have the hitch over the axle or slightly forward. Really, unless you need 4-doors I see zero attraction to an MDT. There is not a single attribute of towing that the HDT does not perform better, and there is not comparison in comfort. HDT wins every time. There are "some" reasons that people prefer an MDT, but they are pretty specialized.
  12. Probably you need to at least replace the shocks. If you have never done it, almost for sure they need doing. Also check the bushings, and the control arm. You already did the bags, or I'd suggest those as well. If all that does not work then you are sensitive to movement and the Donvel valves are the way to go. I would not do the valves until you have corrected anything else wrong. You might want to align the cab at the same time - they definitely lean over time.
  13. While it is true that some people have been ticketed for overlength it is extremely rare. And despite some peoples claims, you will not be put "out of service" you will simply be issued a ticket, pay it and go on your way. As far as an MDT and size goes - you do realize that there are short HDTs that have all the mechanical advantages of an HDT (vs. the MDT). Look at 630's and 420's. The truck pictured is a truck I owned and it was our daily driver. It was about 2' longer than my F550 and maneuvered far better. It had a 182" wheelbase. It was a great daily driver, and far more comfortable than any MDT. In new Volvo's you can get an 640 with 4-doors now, if that is a mission requirement.
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