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Jack Mayer

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Everything posted by Jack Mayer

  1. Jack Mayer

    75 ft 18 in overall length

    For over 8 years I drove our semi truck, various trailers all over 38', and pulled a Jeep. All over the South and West and midwest. I did not enter CA, WA or go above VA on the east coast. But everywhere else I towed the doubles. I was never stopped or questioned. Now, that really means absolutely nothing, except to confirm the statement above. I put almost 200,000 miles on in that configuration. I was routinely over 80'. I do know people that have been stopped for overlength. But I never was. Was it safe? Well, not as safe as my smart on the deck of the truck, IMO. Do I recommend it? No.
  2. Jack Mayer

    Spoiled by my HDT

    (The good thing about the in-frame is that you will never have to do that one again. And that is about the only good thing.... :
  3. Jack Mayer

    Dropped Trailer-Segue

    Well, this topic is of some interest to me. Having had a fire inside my rig, it prompted me to start doing the Fire Safety presentation at the National HDT Rally. I've done it every year for a long time. Mainly to make people aware of the topic and make them THINK about things some. I'm not a fire safety expert, but I sure got REAL FOCUSSED on the topic when I saw 3' flames in my living room. That actually happened at the National Rally - back in 2010 or so....If things work out, "The Ricks" will do the presentation this year - they are true fire safety experts. If not, I'll do it again. One of the things I talk about in the presentation is the very topic above....dropping your trailer if it is on fire. It may or may not be feasible, even under the best of circumstances. But you need to consider how to do it effectively if it is to be part of your available options. The info above is good, and you should think things through. HOW does your trailer get off your truck fast? Even if you unhitch it, it likely will not just fall off if you pull away. Maybe, maybe not. Mine won't. In my case, I would almost HAVE to lower the jacks on the trailer. How fast can you do that? Are you getting help from your spouse? How long are you going to try to fight the fire/evaluate your circumstances BEFORE you start to unhook. As Randy will tell you, a front trailer fire is going to go up fast. VERY fast in most circumstances. The general rule of thumb is you have about 90 seconds to do something....after that your options are limited or gone. In our case, we have "drilled" the disconnect option. We can do it pretty fast once we start. But how long until you start? It is a LOT different if you actually are doing it under duress/stress. We have arrived at the conclusion you have about a 50/50 chance of disconnecting cleanly, on average. That is simply a guess based on our practice. Danielle can get the legs down enough for me to get out in less than a minute, but that is if the "unhook" does not bind. The total process takes at least another minute....so you are at two minutes AFTER you decide to "execute". And that is the best case. It may or may not work. But you have no chance if everything is locked up. Again, MY opinion only. But I'd bet I'm the only one here that has drilled this more than once (well except maybe Randy). Believe me (and Randy); if you have a fire it is a powerful motivator.
  4. Jack Mayer

    Looking for Volvo 780 to buy

    Not sure when you did this, since most of the inquiries are being sent to us. You might try again if it was a while ago. We have discussed with the owner a more realistic market price. But that is up to them. We are simply advising and helping them get it sold. As I said, we get nothing from it. But it has been there for a while and needs to go. You should be able to find something in the price range you are looking for. It won't be perfect, but it should get you going. Expect to spend at least another 10K to get it the way you want it, and to do maintenance on it.
  5. Jack Mayer

    Looking for Volvo 780 to buy

    Glenn, all things equal I prefer a truck with DEF as well as DPF. The trucks with just DPF seem to have more pollution system issues. Which makes sense, since they improved these systems over the years.
  6. Jack Mayer

    Looking for Volvo 780 to buy

    Kansas RV Center has a turnkey Volvo for sale...the trucks name is Ernie. The one called Wilson is sold. The price is simply the advertised price - you can get it for far less than that. Under 100K. It meets your stated requirements, but you have not indicated price range. We have nothing to do with this sale, and get nothing from it. We are just helping KS RV Center move the consignment stock.
  7. Jack Mayer

    Heating the basement

    Propex or Webasto are both excellent heaters designed for commercial application. The Webasto is widely used in semi trucks. It is likely overkill in a basement unless you really want it warm. But you will occasionally see them in some of the custom 5ers. We will have one in our new 5er; diesel fired.
  8. Jack Mayer

    Finally Did it! Dropped Fiver!

    We have a checklist on our phones. We use that to verify everything "happened". As to padlocking the hitch....I agree, I never do it, and I don't; recommend it. There are too many situations where you need to get it off fast. If you don't believe these can happen to you, then you likely do not have insurance, either.
  9. Jack Mayer

    Finally Did it! Dropped Fiver!

    Yeah, you would. You can paint the latch (the handle mechanism) so that if it is not all the way into the block you will see a line. But other than that and pushing on the mechanism to be sure it is seated, there is not much else you can do.
  10. Jack Mayer

    Excessive 3rd. Axle Tire Wear

    The answers about the third axle taking more wear are right. And this is why you rotate trailer tires. Always rotate tires...and rotate your spare through as well. At least then you know that there is a chance that it is usable....many people never look at their spare tire....until they need it....and then it is often unusable.
  11. Jack Mayer

    Air Line Fitting Plug

    NAPA generally has them as well.
  12. Jack Mayer

    Volvo tilt wheel cable

    I would never tackle this job, so I'm in awe of Rick. I've seen it done. It is generally not easy. If you do it a bunch it seems to get easier - or so I'm told. This is a case where an experienced Volvo Tech is worth their weight in gold. My opinion only.....
  13. Dave, it just keeps getting better and better. Glad you got to get your dream truck.....it is all working out!!
  14. Jack Mayer

    Fuel economy vs HP

    Glenn, the truck readout is often inaccurate. Do a measured test if you can..... For others....MY opinion: if you are super concerned about fuel mileage and are in recreational service, it is likely you do not want an HDT. Because the expense of owning an HDT and keeping it properly maintained makes any fuel savings that you achieve seem like peanuts. Don't worry about fuel economy. Get the truck you want, set it up the way you want, drive it, and most importantly MAINTAIN it.
  15. Jack Mayer

    Frame rails?

    A scrap yard is a good choice. That will by far be the cheapest. We bend our own to size, but you need at least a 350 ton brake to do over 6' lengths. a 10' length is going to be difficult unless you find someone with the right brake. Plus you have to get the radius die exactly correct or you will have issues. You better know what you are doing if you break your own. We extend the rails by welding extension on, then sister in an overlap. Any frame shop can do this work. It varies wildly in cost. Mostly depending on regional differences, the shops setup time, and the length.
  16. Jack Mayer

    New drom box designed

    Highway Products builds nice stuff. You won't be disappointed in their quality. I've bought several things from them over the years.
  17. Jack Mayer

    Back from the first trip with the Volvo. I think I may hate I Shift

    You have an issue somewhere if you are experiencing those problems. It should be smooth as silk with any weights. First, upgrade to the Premium and get the programming looked at. Then you can start pursuing other possible issues. But what you are describing is not normal.
  18. Jack Mayer

    Truck painting

    The 12K-15K is more realistic for a quality job. The 6K jobs are more "commercial" in nature, not up to most RV standards. We just got an estimate for the three color paint job (custom layout) on a NEW truck and it was 19K. But this is a high-quality job, more of a "show paint" job.
  19. Jack Mayer

    The end of the beginning

    Really nice job. The truck looks very elegant. Of course, having the best-looking model on the road, to start with, does not hurt.
  20. Jack Mayer

    Rainbow's End price increase

    I can relate to the increasing costs. We have a small campground for servicing our customer base, and electric in the summer is averaging about $150 a month per site. JUST for the electric.
  21. Jack Mayer

    TPMS, or not

    And that is why we line the wheel wells completely with metal liners..... It helps a LOT.
  22. Jack Mayer

    TPMS, or not

    I'm probably going to put those on our new coach. But I will leave the truck with the external sensors. Don't ask me why, because there is no logical explanation. Just what I "feel like". It is relatively easy for me to mess with this stuff since we are dealers.
  23. Jack Mayer

    Anyone running an Allison trans?

    There was also a FL that converted over to an Allison, if I recall correctly.
  24. Jack Mayer

    Best truck to use for me.

    Ad David said, don't put 14 mpg in your head. You won't get it unless you have a newer truck and are bobtailing. I do get it on my truck if there is no headwind but only bobtailing, and not every run. But doing the back and forth from CO to KS I do see in the 14's (measured, not the computer) about half the time. The rest of the time I see in the 13's and the 12's if any wind. I do see in the 9's towing my 28K trailer. On the flats, not in the mountains. I personally like Volvo's and the IShift, but my second choice would be a KW T680 with a Cummins and Ultrashift. But that is a newer truck and will require a larger budget. The condo in the Volvo is hard to beat if it meets your requirements. The key to any used truck is to find a good one, and have enough time and funds to get it reliable. Anything with higher miles on it and age is subject to component failure and you will have to deal with fixing things. So have a repair budget of at LEAST $8K set aside for that.
  25. Jack Mayer

    Anyone running an Allison trans?

    Doug remembers well. That is true, that a conversion was done to an Allison for a manual trans. It was expensive...at the time I recall $25K and that was MANY years ago. My thought at the time was why not just buy a new truck.....
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