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Old 05-24-2012, 09:03 AM   #1
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2 Piece Ladders, I DON'T Like 'em...

Like I guess most coaches, ours has a 2 piece ladder, with the bottom portable part stored in an outside bay. I just don't like it. I don't know about the rest of you, but I seem to want to get up on my roof on a fairly regular basis. Our coach is stored un-covered at home and we have a lot of tall trees. The wind blows and I have small branches on top of the coach that need to be removed as well as regular cleanings. But, mostly, when I fuel up, I often like to clean the camera glass. I hate getting out the bottom portion of the ladder just to wipe off the glass. I guess I know why manufacturers make the 2 piece, but maybe I'm wrong. They are trying to ensure no one else has access to climbing on the roof and possibly injuring themselves? Is that it? I do recall a time when I was stopped at an intersection in a different coach we owned. I looked in the rear-view mirror and noticed a kid on a skateboard hanging onto the ladder and yes, when the light turned green he was still with me. Hung on for about half a block. I thought it was kinda cool!

I would like to permanantly install a lower portion, but don't really want to do it with the existing part I now have and I don't want to replace the whole ladder. Does anyone know of an existing solution? I'm thinking something similar to the lower half but that doesn't have the large openings to attach to the upper half. I just want something that will attach to the upper portion and then install a couple screws/bolts and I'm done. Anyone?

Thanks, Phil
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:21 AM   #2
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The bottom part is removeable to gain access to the engine to check oil, coolent, etc.
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Old 05-24-2012, 09:49 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by rickandcheryl View Post
The bottom part is removeable to gain access to the engine to check oil, coolent, etc.
HA! I read that and it was like a revelation. How could I miss that obvious need? I immediately went out and took a look at my coach. Nope, that is not the case. Even with the engine door open it still clears even the upper portion of the ladder and there is plenty of room for the lower portion, too. So, at least on my coach, I still don't see the need for a 2 piece ladder.
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:00 AM   #4
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My ladder does not block access either, I choose not to carry the bottom half, I have a fold up space saving ladder that I install my sun screens with. One ladder can do both. I use my fold up to gain access to my rear ladder. I'm with you on the rear camera lens, I rain-x mine once a year and this helps tremendously! Just one more thing I don't have to do while traveling.
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:04 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by 336muffin View Post
I choose not to carry the bottom half, I have a fold up space saving ladder that I install my sun screens with.
BINGO. I don't even carry the bottom half with us either....matter of fact, I've never even used it!
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:09 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by 336muffin View Post
My ladder does not block access either, I choose not to carry the bottom half, I have a fold up space saving ladder that I install my sun screens with. One ladder can do both. I use my fold up to gain access to my rear ladder. I'm with you on the rear camera lens, I rain-x mine once a year and this helps tremendously! Just one more thing I don't have to do while traveling.
Thanks for the reminder about Rain-X, I forgot I was going to do that. Good to know it helps. I also carry a fold-up ladder, but that is still something I would need to go get just to climb my ladder. I'm really looking for a more or less permanant solution with my existing ladder.
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Old 05-24-2012, 04:40 PM   #7
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On my Journey, the bottom portion attaches to the top section and the support pad on the bottom section rests against the "bumper" - probably like everyone else. I also did not like storing the bottom part. Behind the "bumper" there is a steel plate for support of the ladder pad. I mounted the bottom portion, drilled two holes through the pad on the bottom section and the bumper and steel plate and used stainless steel bolts and nuts to permanently mount it. Its been on there for over a year, and everything is fine.

W8RLM - Bob
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:43 PM   #8
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On my Journey, the bottom portion attaches to the top section and the support pad on the bottom section rests against the "bumper" - probably like everyone else. I also did not like storing the bottom part. Behind the "bumper" there is a steel plate for support of the ladder pad. I mounted the bottom portion, drilled two holes through the pad on the bottom section and the bumper and steel plate and used stainless steel bolts and nuts to permanently mount it. Its been on there for over a year, and everything is fine.

W8RLM - Bob
Ok, Bob, thanks, that's kinda what I had in mind. I just wasn't sure if it would look "funny" with the big loops of the lower section permanantly attached to the upper portion. Actually, I'm to the point where I don't care what it looks like, I just want to be able to use my ladder without going to get it, first!
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Old 05-24-2012, 05:57 PM   #9
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I believe the reason the manufacturers went to the two piece ladder was for security reasons. One of the easiest access points to gain entry into the coach is through the shower skylight. I leave my lower portion at home and use my collapsible ladder on those rare occasions when I need to get on the roof while I'm away from home.
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Old 05-24-2012, 06:21 PM   #10
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I spend a lot of time under trees as well, so I need roof access often. This is kinda crazy on my part, but for the last two years, I've been lazy and just left mine hanging on the bottom. It doesn't seem to move, as I can clearly see it through the rear camera. No scuffing of paint, no other problems. It would have to swing WAY out to disconnect, and that is unlikely.... Not a good solution, I suppose, just expressing another option. I don't like pulling it out of storage, then having to clean it up to put it back later. (I know, being lazy again. )

I've thought of mounting it permanently, but am put off by the narrow width at the top of the bottom section, and also put off by using the rings for connection. IMO, it just wouldn't look right, and probably not be as strong, not sure. I may rebuild the bottom portion with some chromed tubing to widen it out, then attach. Or just cut them off to get the same width as the upper, though I would give up some length. Or I could use some tubing to 'sleeve' both sections and restore the full length.... Any thoughts?
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Old 05-24-2012, 07:22 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by steelheadbluesman View Post
I spend a lot of time under trees as well, so I need roof access often. This is kinda crazy on my part, but for the last two years, I've been lazy and just left mine hanging on the bottom. It doesn't seem to move, as I can clearly see it through the rear camera. No scuffing of paint, no other problems. It would have to swing WAY out to disconnect, and that is unlikely.... Not a good solution, I suppose, just expressing another option. I don't like pulling it out of storage, then having to clean it up to put it back later. (I know, being lazy again. )

I've thought of mounting it permanently, but am put off by the narrow width at the top of the bottom section, and also put off by using the rings for connection. IMO, it just wouldn't look right, and probably not be as strong, not sure. I may rebuild the bottom portion with some chromed tubing to widen it out, then attach. Or just cut them off to get the same width as the upper, though I would give up some length. Or I could use some tubing to 'sleeve' both sections and restore the full length.... Any thoughts?
Yeah, see, that's what I was thinking. Someone must have found a solution and is marketing it. I'll be first in line when you get your idea fully developed!! I like the "sleeved idea, best.
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Old 05-24-2012, 07:32 PM   #12
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Be aware of children, grand children and some one else's children that just can not resist climbing! I always thought that was the reason for two piece ladders....Liability!
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Old 05-24-2012, 07:35 PM   #13
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I've had my eyes open looking for the hinge like is used on the folding boarding ladder on a boat. That way it would be held up with a clip until I fold it down.
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Old 05-24-2012, 07:41 PM   #14
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On our 39K, I wanted the storage area clear of the ladder extension. I can carry a 6' aluminum step ladder in the third bin on the curb side as it is a pass thru on the top part. Fits perfectly. Now I just get it out and it leans up against the mounted ladder to give me access. Plus, I have a "real" step ladder for other things.
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