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Thinking of singling my Volvo 730


RoadWarrior420

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Anybody have any ideas where I can get my rig singled.......correctly........... somewhere in the Northeast?

 

Henry and Davena referred me to:

 

Richards Steele and Iron

213 Haverhill Rd

E Kingston NH 03827

Steve Winters

603-382-8367

2007 Volvo 780 Volvo D12D, 465hp, 1650 ft/lbs tq., ultrashift

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Will I be the lone tandem standing? I loved your truck at the ECR. Looks great as a tandem but I understand it's what's best for your situation. I just like the proportions of the truck as tandem but I may eventually change too if my needs change. It's nice to have the options.

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If near Toronto Ont area I know a good shop that can do whatever you want. Reasonable prices and in CND $ too.

Bill and Joan and 3 Collie pups

2001 Volvo VNL 770 "The Doghouse" Singled short, "ET" hItch VED12 465HP Gen 1 Autoshift 3.58 ratio  2005 Mobile Suite 38RL3  2011 Smart Passion loaded piggybacK

Weigh-It Portable RV Scales http://www.weighitrv.com/

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Kyle,

Axle Anderson's out by you in Medford, or Hendricksen's near me in Dix Hills should be able to do a very good job. Of course Gabrielli Trucks or Freightliner in Ronkonkoma are dealer choices.

"There are No Experts, Do the Math!"

2014 Freightliner Cascadia DD16 600hp  1850ft-lb  18spd  3.31  260"wb
SpaceCraft S-470
SKP #131740

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Just out of curiosity, why are you wanting to single? Better turning? Insurance/registration issues?

I singled mid, the most expensive and hardest(?) way to single a Volvo.

My reasoning was 1) don't need the weight carrying capacity, 2) four less tires to purchase, 3) two less brake chambers, sets of shoes, bearings etc, to deal with, and 4) slightly (very slight) shorter wheel base since I RV in campgrounds which are usually tight to begin with.

The OP may have other reasons.

MY PEOPLE SKILLS ARE JUST FINE.
~It's my tolerance to idiots that needs work.~

2005 Volvo 780 VED12 465hp / Freedomline transmission
singled mid position / Bed by Larry Herrin
2018 customed Mobile Suites 40KSSB3 

2014 smart Fortwo

 

 
 
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I singled short outside in the winter - mostly for the same reasons as Phil. "Hey, I'm just like a dually PU" is my argument to the toll booth collectors. Insurance now covers me same as a class 7 MDT. I did the work myself with the help of a friend that has a boom truck and works on heavy construction equipment in the field. It is not hard to single short if you have the big air tools, cutting torch, lifting equipment and a source for a proper new driveshaft along with at least one really strong back (other than yours). Can't help on finding a place in the northeast.

300.JPG.c2a50e50210ede7534c4c440c7f9aa80.JPG

Randy, Nancy and Oscar

"The Great White" - 2004 Volvo VNL670, D12, 10-speed, converted to single axle pulling a Keystone Cambridge 5th wheel, 40', 4 slides and about 19,000# with empty tanks.

ARS - WB4BZX, Electrical Engineer, Master Electrician, D.Ed., Professor Emeritus - Happily Retired!

 

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Randy, If memory serves me well (always in ?) the first time I saw you and your truck it was still tandem and we were at the American Heritage. When did you single it? Just wondering. Pat

 

 

The Old Sailor

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Just out of curiosity, why are you wanting to single? Better turning? Insurance/registration issues?

 

2X

2012 Volvo VNL 630 w/ I-Shift; D13 engine; " Veeger "
  Redwood, model 3401R ; 5th Wheel Trailer, " Dead Wood "
    2006 Smart Car " Killer Frog "
 

 

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Randy, If memory serves me well (always in ?) the first time I saw you and your truck it was still tandem and we were at the American Heritage. When did you single it? Just wondering. Pat

 

 

The Old Sailor

It was singled when we met at VA Beach 3 years ago and went over to your house/shop. I think that was November of 2013? Dropped the extra axle in Jan 2013.

 

PC200473.jpg

 

cornerview.jpg

300.JPG.c2a50e50210ede7534c4c440c7f9aa80.JPG

Randy, Nancy and Oscar

"The Great White" - 2004 Volvo VNL670, D12, 10-speed, converted to single axle pulling a Keystone Cambridge 5th wheel, 40', 4 slides and about 19,000# with empty tanks.

ARS - WB4BZX, Electrical Engineer, Master Electrician, D.Ed., Professor Emeritus - Happily Retired!

 

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Kyle,

 

The only place I would take my truck for the axle relocation is RV Haulers. Yea its 2500 miles plus west of you but the job will be done correct. Gregg and his team work on Volvo trucks all day doing this mod, he knows the problems and solutions. If you have not seen his web site, you best have a look www.rvhaulers.com there is a wealth of information on that site with many cost options. Hope this helps you out.

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Do you mean Rvhaulers.ca? Our Gregg? And as fabulous as Gregg's work is, there are tons of places that are very capable without driving 5000 miles round trip. The body shop at any Volvo dealer is capable of doing the job correctly and dealing with the ABS brake issues also.

MY PEOPLE SKILLS ARE JUST FINE.
~It's my tolerance to idiots that needs work.~

2005 Volvo 780 VED12 465hp / Freedomline transmission
singled mid position / Bed by Larry Herrin
2018 customed Mobile Suites 40KSSB3 

2014 smart Fortwo

 

 
 
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I'm sure RV Haulers is competent because their reputation counts on it for continued business, and you can single a truck satisfactorily using a tape measure and plumb bobs (as Greg does), but a true truck shop, and especially a frame shop with a frame machine and laser alignment rack can do as well or better in less time (labor). As Big 5er pointed out, you don't have to spend $1500 in fuel and tolls in addition to the cost of singling.

"There are No Experts, Do the Math!"

2014 Freightliner Cascadia DD16 600hp  1850ft-lb  18spd  3.31  260"wb
SpaceCraft S-470
SKP #131740

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There are many places that can do the physical job of singling the truck. Some even will take into account parts replacement while you do it...things like brake cans, shocks, etc are often replaced during singling.....some shops are astute enough to do that without prompting, but most will not. Assuming you provide some guidance that should not be a big issue.

 

Getting a good driveline is critical. It MUST be properly balanced and it must have the right shaft ends. Again, it can be done in a number of places. Most will get that right. Getting the angles correct is also critical. Some shops pretty much ignore this and introduce vibration into the system. Some do get it right.

 

Where things can go wrong quickly is in a shop with no experience with replacing and reprogramming VEST systems, ABS, etc. You are wise to involve a Volvo dealer in that. Even then things may not be smooth, depending on the age and specifics of the truck. In the case of MY truck, Volvo engineering and the various suppliers of component parts were all involved in getting it "right". Even the dealer (alone) could not get the reprogramming correct.

Jack & Danielle Mayer #60376 Lifetime Member
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I have to agree with Jack. My top three are requirements are; Product experience, Quality and Pride in workmanship. That last one is very tough to find. Oh and check out the Canadian dollar vs US, just saying..

 

As someone mentioned earlier if your going short, I would think its not a big deal the bolt holes that are there, although, I have not actually done this job, but I do occasionally sleep at a Holiday Inn Express... If your going mid well there is a lot of things that can go wrong as Jack noted, but you won't find this out until your tires wear out prematurely..

 

Personally, I am looking to keep the tandem. The overall cost of singling must be considered so that leads to the question why? (licensing, CDL, cost of operation and other items aside) For me it's all about the traction, I have seen the singles (better have a locker) have challenges in certain conditions as someone noted earlier in this post. I'm planning to be in the outback, BLM or Crown Land when ever possible in USA ,Canada and the Baja. Trucks working in logging or the oil fields seem to do fine with the tandem drives in all conditions.

 

Only my thoughts, hope it helps.

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I would like to think that any competent chassis/driveline, or body installer shop could move an axle and keep it square with the frame, and then as Gregg does, involve the driveshaft specialty shop for proper driveshaft info and fabrication. a trip to the dealer for an electronic tune up of the computer programming and all will be good. Another trip to the alignment shop to double check and fine tune the alignment probably would be a wise choice but not necessarily mandatory if the people who move the axle know how ti read a string line and basic measuring tools.

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Trucks working in logging or the oil fields seem to do fine with the tandem drives in all conditions.

But those trucks stay tandem because of the weight they haul, not for "traction". They would never consider singling due to their loads. And many logging trucks have been pulled out of the mud by that logging equipment. Look at those machines and tell me that getting stuck isn't an issue.

I've been many places where I parked the truck in the grass or dirt, next to my RV. There may come the day when I have an issue but I haven't yet. I've been down a few dirt roads, but I don't dry camp so I don't travel in that BLM land. Your mileage may vary but I didn't see anyone in this thread mentioning BLM land other than you. You keep asking "why" as if your opinion is the only one. Several people here have answered your question. If singling isn't for you, then great, but it works great for many of us and we have answered your "why". And no matter how good the difference in US/Canadian dollars is, it isn't worth spending the extra dollars to drive up yonder for work that can be done just as well down here. You have 4 posts on this forum, 2 of them are in this thread. If you read a bit more you will find there is a lot of diversity in this forum, some unique and innovative thinkers are here. Your opinion isn't the only one. While staying tandem may be the best for you, it doesn't work for others.

MY PEOPLE SKILLS ARE JUST FINE.
~It's my tolerance to idiots that needs work.~

2005 Volvo 780 VED12 465hp / Freedomline transmission
singled mid position / Bed by Larry Herrin
2018 customed Mobile Suites 40KSSB3 

2014 smart Fortwo

 

 
 
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Having been there and done that myself (with help from a heavy equipment mechanic, his tools and boom truck) I can tell you moving the rear tandem axle to the front axle position is more grunt power than brain power. The center axle comes out, the rear goes forward with all of it's hardware - except for the brake cans. The front brake cans with the spring brake locks are retained (or replace with new). New air bags are about a buck and a quarter each, a pair of shocks will run you between one and two bucks ($100 bucks). You need to plug the air lines to the back brakes and the line to the power divider-axle air cylinder. Now is a good time to have a new support bearing pressed on while you have the driveshaft out (another buck). Check the bushings on your sway arm, replace if needed and reattach to the opposite side (from the center axle) with grade 8 hardware - new mounting holes in the frame may need to be drilled. The MOST important part of the job is getting the correct driveshaft built and BALANCED. The U-Joint on the rear axle is smaller than the front and will require cutting out the the back end of your old driveshaft or buying a new one. I replaced all U-Joints with new Spicer joints. Be sure U-Joints are clocked correctly when putting the driveshaft back in. The drive-line angle is maintained using the OEM rear axle plates and since the ABS is only on the rear axle you do not lose anything there. Now, I am telling you about our truck - I don't know if yours has the same hardware or not. Some trucks have ABS on both rear axles and the leveling valve may also be on the rear axle and need to be moved. The Z springs are different and the back ones need to come forward as well. After ours was back together I paid Volvo $200 for a front to back alignment - they adjusted the toe on the front, did not touch a bolt on the back, and said all was OK. Our truck did not require any changes in the computer. More "advanced" trucks will and that is done by a Volvo dealer since they connect to the Volvo mainframe in never-never land to do the update/changes.

 

Knowing Greg, I have no doubt that he could do the job faster and with less head scratching than a less experienced shop - but again, it ain't rocket science. It does require a lot of brawn and the correct lifting and moving equipment is needed. I did all possible research on this forum first and in the Volvo parts listing to be sure what parts went forward and which did not. It is all here. Just be sure to have an experienced shop build and balance your drive shaft and use the correct yoke and U-Joint for the axle yoke. BTW - you may want to scout the bone yards for a truck that was built single. The axle from a factory single will have a bigger yoke (supposedly stronger) than your rear. If I was doing it over I think I would have looked for a new (used) axle - maybe with a more fuel friendly ratio.

 

BTW - I am much happier with the truck single. Less weight, less maintenance, fewer tires, lower tolls, good ride, easier to insure and less expensive too (ins. now looks at it as a MDT) easier to park when using as a daily driver, turns sharper/easier, easier to back up with trailer, better fit in smaller campgrounds. I did shorten the frame 30" after the axle drop - many do not. I can still carry our golf cart - maybe a Smart if we had one - and swing 90 plus degrees without hitting anything on the bed.

 

PC280474.jpg

NEW DRIVESHAFT

 

DriveShaftbill.jpg

PARTS/BILL FOR NEW DRIVESHAFT

 

airbagandshock.jpg

BACK IS NOW FRONT - Completed mechanical assembly. New air bags and shocks visible.

 

airbagcrack.jpg

OLD AIR BAG - GOOD REASON TO PUT ON NEW ONES. The crack was hidden from view and not observed until the bag was removed. It was in the bottom where the bag compresses.

 

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BEFORE frame rails being shortened.

 

framefinished.jpg

AFTER cutting the frame rails back 30"

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Randy, Nancy and Oscar

"The Great White" - 2004 Volvo VNL670, D12, 10-speed, converted to single axle pulling a Keystone Cambridge 5th wheel, 40', 4 slides and about 19,000# with empty tanks.

ARS - WB4BZX, Electrical Engineer, Master Electrician, D.Ed., Professor Emeritus - Happily Retired!

 

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Just to make 1 item clear-

Gregg prices are in US dollars.... no US to CD savings.

 

Singling the rear is a personal- weight- $$ decision. You may not sink as fast on the rear of the tractor, but the front axle is still a plow on soft ground.

Alie & Jim + 8 paws

2017 DRV Memphis 

BART- 1998 Volvo 610

Lil'ole 6cyl Cummins

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