Slide Jacks - Dutchmen Advice - Dutchmen Owners

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Old 05-19-2019, 08:12 PM   #1
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Slide Jacks - Dutchmen Advice

Greetings Folks,

Being new here please accept my apology for asking something that I am sure has been asked dozens of times. However, I am trying to find out a more specific response someone may have gotten from Dutchmen directly. Yes, I intend to ask them directly as well.

We have a new 2019 Coleman by Dutchmen 263BH and have had Dutchmen before. However, this is our first RV with a slide and to be honest it has me paranoid.

I have been watching video after video and reading article after article and it just goes 50/50 as to the results. So what am I talking about......Slide Jacks.

So many say its fine and logic to weight is well founded so as to help prevent bowing or sagging. However, the against folks say it can cause more harm than good if the camper settles or shifts and puts stress on slide system and in some cases can damage it.

So danged if you do...danged if you dont and its runs 50/50. So what does Dutchmen say?...are they engineered to need nothing hence why none are provided already or is their a weight load limit to be aware of and so on.

Just want to make sure we start this rig off right and reduce the likelhood of user error....well reduce it as much possible...LOL...

If any of you have ever asked Dutchmen or Thor Manufacturing what they recommend?
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Old 05-19-2019, 08:43 PM   #2
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Engineering? I think that is a foreign concept in manufacturing trailers. The builders don't even care about the quality of their build. But I've been surprised before. I've never found the need for a slide jack.
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Old 05-20-2019, 03:47 PM   #3
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As a general rule, I don't think they necessary unless you have a very large slide that is going to spend the entire season extended and in use.

Aaron
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Old 05-20-2019, 03:57 PM   #4
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I have never used them. If they were necessary you would think that manufacturers would include them because they are pretty inexpensive and would also allow the manufacturer to blame you for a slide warranty issue because you “didn’t use the provided slide jacks correctly”.

I have been camping for years and rarely see anyone using them.

I have no plans to ever buy or use any.
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Old 05-26-2019, 01:47 AM   #5
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I have a slide which weighs about 1000#s, I am full time and stay sometimes for 5 months in one place. Never needed nor used jacks
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Old 05-26-2019, 06:21 AM   #6
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Well crap, typed an answer and got told I wasn't logged in..I was...and lost it. So here we go again.

Support jacks. NO, you do not need them. How do I know...well, last Oct/Nov I had to rebuild the drives on both ends of the Living Area slide on my 2014 Voltage Epic 3800. After the hailstorms here in Southern Colorado I couldn't get an appointment to get it checked out for about 4 months. Nope...headed to Arizona in 2 months. Here we go.

I'm going to believe that yours is a Lippert/Schwintek slide with the drives vertical on each end of the slide. The drive motors are at the top and are a 700 to 1 torque multiplier motor. You can't turn that motor without power, period!

So with the drive motors out of my slide I had to support it with jacks to keep it in.
With the drive motors installed and drive rod connected, the slide is supported by the drive mechanisms...and with the torque multiplier motors the slide stays level without jacks. The motors, near as I can figure, cannot be turned with anything other than 12V DC power.

A little learning on slides.

Lippert videos and instructions tell you to only run the slide out all the way or in all the way. There is a reason for that. The controller monitors the current draw by the two motors. When the controller sees the current spike, as the slide hits the end of travel, it shuts off power to the motors. At the same time, there are two sensors on top of the motor counting the revolutions of the motor via a disk mounted on the end of the rotor.

So, by always running the slide all the way out or all the way in, the controller has good information on the number of revolutions for full travel of the slide. If you don't run the slide all the way out or all the way in...the controller loses the revolution count.

So the videos on YouTube talk about "retiming" a slide by running it all the way out and all the way in, three times. What they don't tell you is that's how the controller gets the revolution count accurate again.

There are slides the during assembly, are not quite square in the wall opening. So the controller will monitor current as the slide comes in and also monitors the motor revolution count. On ours, the motor at the rear of the slide will power down at the same time as the front motor. Then power up and bring the rear of the slide in another half inch. Lippert tells me that happens when one motor current spikes, but the revolution count is not the same at both ends. So the motor with out reaching full revolution count gets shut off, then powers up and runs until the revolution count is correct.

Another recommendation. When you hear the motors power down, keep your finger on the button for another 10 seconds so the Controller has everything it needs!

Tired tonite. Did I answer the questions and provide some learning?

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Old 05-28-2019, 01:04 PM   #7
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Thanks. It was informative and for those with that type of slide mechanism it will benefit them greatly by learning from your experience. However, my slide is a underneath style and not the Schwintek like yours.
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