35856Re: [classicrv] New to group, just got an 87 Windcruiser
- Sep 24, 2011David,
I have an '87 Itasca Windcruiser. It exhibits the same issue with the belts. A friend who had a similar model warned me when I got it that one should carry spare belts, more than one set. Use the best heavy duty belts you can buy. That era 454 uses belts that are really too narrow to carry the load of a heavy duty alternator charging multiple batteries, Air Conditioner, power steering pump, etc.
There just isn't enough friction area on the pulleys to quite do the job unless everything is kept just so tightness wise. After things heat up and the new belts wear in just a little, say 500 miles, you better tighten them or prepare to lose the belts.
I can't believe it cost $500 to get the belts replaced. I've literally done it at 5am in the parking lot of a gas station and was then on my way after about about an hour.
We learned that even quickly lifting off the gas, when say a stoplight changes at an inoportune time, can kick off the belts as they become lose. I don't know if it relates to different inertias in the rotating mass of the various pumps vs the engine's quick ability to rev up or down.
I've often thought changing to a serpentine belt from later engines would be a useful upgrade. But getting all the apprpriate idler brackets, tensioner pulleys, and pumps would be quite a project.
----- Original Message -----
From: David S
Sent: Thursday, September 01, 2011 12:54 PM
Subject: [classicrv] New to group, just got an 87 Windcruiser
Hi, I just got an '87 Itasca Windcruiser 37RQ yesterday. I like it, but I'm already thinking I may have gotten someone elses headache. Picked it up about 160 mikles from home, and started home with it. Made it about 40 miles and heard "BANG". Steering got stiff, and brakes got mushy along with temp going up. Looks like I blew all the belts. Fortunatly there was an RV place on that exit off I-95 and it's in their shop now. Hopefully the belts blew because I turned on the air and the compressor seized up, and not something worse. I'm guessing it will cost me about $500 just to get the belts changed so I can get this thing home and start to work on it.
Things it will need - new headliner, generator repaired, new front shocks, and God knows what else.
After I limped it to the RV service place, I noticed that the suspension was sagging. Would this be from not enough battery power left to keep the rear tag axle inflated? Just hope I don't have more issues before I can get it home.
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