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Old 03-23-2016, 04:01 PM   #1
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Loose receiver

I hope that what I encountered was a freak. But in case it is not I want to warn people. I own a 2010 Itasca suncruiser on a freightlinner chassis. when unhitching my toad I noticed that the receiver was loose. I then found that it was bolted to the frame. And ALL but one bolt had lost the nuts. Only one nut held the receiver up. Fortunately all the bolts were still there and when towing the force is mostly a shear against those bolts. But if that last nut had came off the whole receiver would have fallen off the chassis.
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Old 03-23-2016, 04:33 PM   #2
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Wow, it sounds like someone forgot to tighten the nuts up to begin with. I will make sure mine is on good and tight before I leave this Friday, thanks.
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Old 03-23-2016, 04:45 PM   #3
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Hitch and baseplate are important occasional safety checks. I do some jerking up and down on mine every time I hitch up the toad. I was the tail gunner on an Alaska caravan a few years ago and found a loose baseplate by doing that when checking out our member's rigs.
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Old 03-23-2016, 05:56 PM   #4
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pokgunner, glad you posted this. I'll check mine before heading out on Monday.
Thanks
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Old 03-23-2016, 06:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pokgunner View Post
I hope that what I encountered was a freak. But in case it is not I want to warn people. I own a 2010 Itasca suncruiser on a freightlinner chassis. when unhitching my toad I noticed that the receiver was loose. I then found that it was bolted to the frame. And ALL but one bolt had lost the nuts. Only one nut held the receiver up. Fortunately all the bolts were still there and when towing the force is mostly a shear against those bolts. But if that last nut had came off the whole receiver would have fallen off the chassis.
Very good info. This is one of those "out of sight, out of mind" safety inspections items.

Thanks for helping all of us succeed at being on...

Happy Trails,
Rick Y
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Old 03-23-2016, 08:59 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pokgunner View Post
I hope that what I encountered was a freak. But in case it is not I want to warn people. I own a 2010 Itasca suncruiser on a freightlinner chassis. when unhitching my toad I noticed that the receiver was loose. I then found that it was bolted to the frame. And ALL but one bolt had lost the nuts. Only one nut held the receiver up. Fortunately all the bolts were still there and when towing the force is mostly a shear against those bolts. But if that last nut had came off the whole receiver would have fallen off the chassis.
Just as a factual point, I think you'll find you have a Ford chassis, not a Freightliner one (see the 2010 Suncruiser Brochure).
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Old 03-24-2016, 10:31 AM   #7
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Its a freightlinner withe a cummins diesel. They made 10 of them.
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Old 03-24-2016, 10:37 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by pokgunner View Post
Its a freightlinner withe a cummins diesel. They made 10 of them.
Aah, OK. Never heard of those.
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:09 PM   #9
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Aah, OK. Never heard of those.
Take a closer look under Chassis Options. "FRED" on a Freightliner was offered.
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:15 PM   #10
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Yep, it happens. In 2004 I drove our 2002 DSDP to the Spartan factory to have the front axle replaced. While on the rack they did a full inspection and found the receiver bolts loose. I don't know what they did but it never happened again.
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:28 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by pokgunner View Post
Its a freightlinner withe a cummins diesel. They made 10 of them.
That would be the FCCC FRED chassis! I didn't know WBGO even offered them under the 2010 Suncruisers. Which floor plan did you get?
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:36 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by jerichorick View Post
Take a closer look under Chassis Options. "FRED" on a Freightliner was offered.
Missed that competely! Must be going blind...
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:40 PM   #13
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Clean the threads with a wire brush and put on Red Loctite. White Loctite if you never want to fight to remove the assembly!
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Old 03-25-2016, 05:17 PM   #14
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"They made 10 of them" Suncruisers and Adventurers? Or just Suncruisers? I always figured it was a very low number, but 10, wow.

If only you had read this thread a couple weeks ago.

(I don't say that in a "you should have caught it" way, just to point out that it does happen more than you'd like to think.)
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Old 03-25-2016, 07:23 PM   #15
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If that was a factory hitch, I would let them know, if you are not the only one with that complaint, it deserves a recall. Major safety item. What are your safety chains attached to? The receiver hitch. They should have self locking nuts.
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Old 03-26-2016, 09:35 AM   #16
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I am a little surprised that this is not uncommon. I long ago realized that any design choice Winnebago has favors building it cheaply over building it right. But given how expensive and dangerous this could have been you would think they would have at least used loctight or lock nuts.

While I understand why they do not weld them on, that is what I am going to do when I get home.
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Old 03-26-2016, 10:16 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by CJ7ole View Post
If that was a factory hitch, I would let them know, if you are not the only one with that complaint, it deserves a recall. Major safety item. What are your safety chains attached to? The receiver hitch. They should have self locking nuts.
I don't know if this is completely their fault. My Freightliner chassis owners manual has a 30K mile chassis inspection that includes torquing the frame and suspension bolts. After many miles and years of use I think it is our responsibility to do an in-depth inspection of such things. I also like the idea of checking the base plate bolts from time to time. I think it is fair to say that when these things are first bolted together there may be a slight stretching of the bolts and compression of the plates. The force applied by the component assembly could change over time with temperature change and vibration. The use of a wrench from time to time seems like a prudent move to me.

Happy trails,
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Old 03-26-2016, 11:24 AM   #18
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Mine came mostly off while making a left turn in Ames, Iowa. A local hitch shop set me up with a new one because mine got bent when it came loose.

After that, I put my breakaway to the frame NOT the receiver.
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Old 03-26-2016, 01:03 PM   #19
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Wow! What a just on time find!

Every time I hook up the toad I pull up and down on the tow bar before hooking it up. Never had the entire hitch loosen but the anti-rattle pin that holds the tow bar on has loosened up a few times so when I notice a little movement in the tow bar I just tighten it up and it's good for a few months.
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Old 03-26-2016, 01:26 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by pokgunner View Post
I hope that what I encountered was a freak. But in case it is not I want to warn people. I own a 2010 Itasca suncruiser on a freightlinner chassis. when unhitching my toad I noticed that the receiver was loose. I then found that it was bolted to the frame. And ALL but one bolt had lost the nuts. Only one nut held the receiver up. Fortunately all the bolts were still there and when towing the force is mostly a shear against those bolts. But if that last nut had came off the whole receiver would have fallen off the chassis.
If you didn't change the bolts, I would recommend that you do as soon as possible.

As each one backed off, more stress was added to the remaining ones.

That along with the shearing action from movement would have damaged the bolts and possibly enlarged the holes.
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