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Got a reminder to use our trucks


Broncohauler

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A lot of us just don't drive our trucks enough, and then wonder why they have problems.
I'm guilty of this myself, we mainly use our truck in the desert season and will sometimes let it sit for up to a month at a time.
Last week I had my fleet mechanic friend I do welding for do a service and full inspection. We drove the truck yesterday for a show and tonight for a Cruz night,
Got home to find a cab air bag leaking badly. The mechanic didn't miss anything and it's not rotten just let go.
My point here is even if you have the best service, stuff breaks!
Make sure before taking a trip avoid the surprise of a breakdown and go for a long drive.
I'm glad it happened now because we leave for Bigbear mt in a week.

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My truck eats cab airbags for lunch. I know it is because it sits with no air for weeks at a time and those bags sit rolled up into themselves. They start to crack at the roll and eventually let go. Because of this, I set up a way to back feed my air system from my shop air compressor to keep the bags filled. Of course now all I have to do is get power in the shop to run the air compressor (and everything else). ;) Hopefully one of these days soon I will actually get some free time at home to start that project.

 

I agree these trucks need to be out running down the road. I try to keep mine exercised regularly, but sometimes life gets in the way.

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My truck eats cab airbags for lunch. I know it is because it sits with no air for weeks at a time and those bags sit rolled up into themselves. They start to crack at the roll and eventually let go. Because of this, I set up a way to back feed my air system from my shop air compressor to keep the bags filled. Of course now all I have to do is get power in the shop to run the air compressor (and everything else). ;) Hopefully one of these days soon I will actually get some free time at home to start that project.

 

I agree these trucks need to be out running down the road. I try to keep mine exercised regularly, but sometimes life gets in the way.

This will be my 3rd set of bags. Plus side,I do know the easy way to change them now?

I might build a block to go in between the sleeper cab and frame for when it sits with out air?

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I replaced my first set that had 1.5 million miles,when I built my bed knowing it would be a pain to replace them later on with the bed on.

The 1st set that I put on rotted out with in 3 years and 15k miles.

This set has only been on for maybe 2 years and 5k miles

With no sign of wrought.

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Old Defective airbag

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Use the forklift to lift the cab up enough to slide the old airbag out air tanks of been drained.

http://i1274. http://i1274

 

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Air fitting screws into the bottom of the airbag after airbag is reinstalled sorry couldn't help but polish it while It was out it's an addiction.

New airbag is installed top bolt and bottom nut are kept loose until airbag has been aired up allowing the airbag to settle into place.

 

http://s1274.photobucket.com/user/bronco1971/media/Mobile%20Uploads/2016-08/99F37242-C7EE-41E8-B6DF-39A1A19BBA49_zpsc7hakzql.jpg.html"%5Dhttp://s1274.photobucket.com/user/bronco1971/media/Mobile%20Uploads/2016-08/99F37242-C7EE-41E8-B6DF-39A1A19BBA49_zpsc7hakzql.jpg.html"%5Dhttp://s1274.photobucket.com/user/bronco1971/media/Mobile%20Uploads/2016-08/99F37242-C7EE-41E8-B6DF-39A1A19BBA49_zpsc7hakzql.jpg.html"%5Dhttp://s1274.photobucket.com/user/bronco1971/media/Mobile%20Uploads/2016-08/99F37242-C7EE-41E8-B6DF-39A1A19BBA49_zpsc7hakzql.jpg.html"][/url][/url][/url]99F37242-C7EE-41E8-B6DF-39A1A19BBA49_zps

Airbag is now full of air all bolts tightened soapy water for leak testing fittings all good ready to rock.

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Charlie,

 

What if you don't have a forklift. Any tricks to getting bags out?

Not sure about your volvos someone else may have done it? But here are 3 different ideas.

It's a very easy job on a none rusted truck depending on room between your cab and bed.

1) see if there is room for a small bottle Jack between your sleeper and the frame.

2) floor jack on the ground with an extension up to the sleeper floor. That's how I used to do it.

3) air your bags all the way up, place a block in between the frame and sleeper, then drain all the air out of your tanks. It will be tight trying to slide the old bag out.

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This really is a easy job on a none rusted truck.

You have one bolt on the top and a plastic nut on the bottom. Your airline will be a fitting like mine or a DOT push lock fitting.

The fitting like mine you must remove before loosening the bolts.

Tools needed

Way to lift cab.

9/16 wrench

1/2 wrench

1 1/8 wrench or adjustable wrench will work

Spray bottle soapy water ( leak test)

Anti-seize For top bolt is a good idea

Teflon tape for pipe fittings

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Carl,

Steps I follow to change out cab air bags.....

 

1. Gain access to top bolt on cab air bag and spray the mounting bolt with my favorite "debunking" spray and let it mellow overnight.

2. Next morning use an air source of your choice to inflate air system on the truck to inflate cab air bags.

2. With your air system still at working pressure disconnect cab air bag leveling valve from cab and increase the pressure in the bags to raise cab upward enough to insert a wood spacer block between cabs rubber bumper stops and the frame work of the truck. (These are the stops the cab rests on when the bags are deflated). (2x4 works nicely)

3. Remove all air pressure from the truck and the storage tanks. Your choice on method used.

4. Disconnect bottom air line from airbag. Then remove fitting. I like DOT approved brass compression fittings so I changed mine out during my first bag replacement along with the air lines and the living valve.

5. There also may be a "star " shaped spring clip holding the bag to the lower mounting point where you removed the air line fitting. Remove this and reuse or get a new one when you get your replacement air bag.

6. Grasp airbag tightly around its circumference and spin it to remove it from the top mounting point. The airbag has a stud that crews into a "captive" nut that is installed in the supporting frame member that runs along the bottom of the cab. Sometimes the "debunking" procedure doesn't work so well and you need to use some addition force and leverage to spin the air bag free. Some have even cut the old bag apart and used a large pair of pliers to spin the airbag free. Just be carefull to not damage the "captive" because it's very hard to access to repair.

7. Remember this style of airbag "folds" up within itself when it is installed and properly inflated so when you purchase the replacement bag it will be long and somewhat skinny in appearance and you will need to fold it to the correct shape to install it.

8. Install top mounting stud into captive nut and tighten. Remember to apply some anti-seize to the stud before installation. This will greatly increase removal of the airbag in the future. Slide bottom of new bag into lower mounting bracket, install "star" shaped spring clip and secure to bottom of airbag. Next install air fitting and airline.

9. Inflate airbags slowly, manually using cab airbag leveling valve to raise the cab high enough to remove your wooden spacer blocks you added earlier. Do not over inflate!

10. Lower cab airbags until you can reattach the cab airbag leveling valve and check your repair for leaks.

 

This is the method I use. YMMV!

It is one of our easier DIY tasks.

This list of steps is for a 2005 Volvo 780 and can be different depending on make and model of truck.

It is my understanding this method should work on most Volvos. You guys with the other brands may have to fend for yourself.

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1 had 1.4 million on the first set of air bags. 13 years old decided to replace them because of ozone cracking. There are a lot of "will fit" imported bags floating around the market these days. I suspect some of the troubles mentioned here might have to do with that.

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1 had 1.4 million on the first set of air bags. 13 years old decided to replace them because of ozone cracking. There are a lot of "will fit" imported bags floating around the market these days. I suspect some of the troubles mentioned here might have to do with that.

 

All of the bags I have put on have been Kenworth OEM parts. They really just don't do well deflated and folded into themselves for extended periods of time.

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