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View Full Version : Landing Gear Fixed (Thanks Gary521)



navyAZ1
12-26-2010, 04:43 PM
Well my landing gear is finally fixed and working fine again! Thanks to the guidance of Gary521 he sent me in the right direction and pointed out a great flaw in the information needed for landing gear maintenance. It was the "screw drive" that was the problem it was sooooo dry I could barely turn it with my hand. I lubed it and all is well the landing gear works like it did when the coach was new.

I would recommend that everyone with the electric landing gear remove the landing gear legs, disassemble them, and lube that screw drive. If you don't feel comfortable doing this at least get someone to do it for you especially if your rig is 3 to 4 years old as our is. I could not believe that we were never told to lube this and that there is no way to lube the screw drive without completely taking the landing gear out and taking it apart. But Gary521 had a great idea again he suggested while I had the legs apart to drill a " hole in the outter housing at 10" & 15" from the top to allow the injection of lubricants to keep the screw drive lubed. I also plan to try and find a few rubber caps to snap in those holes to help keep out dust and such.

Gary my friend I can't think you enough for the assist in this, I was at a total loss as to what was wrong after replacing the gears, gear box, and motor and still had the same problem, but once I lubed that screw drive everything was fine. This just proves again we have some great sources for information here on the forum and makes me even happier that Ann and I are members of the Heartland family.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to All

See Ya at the Rally in June.

Ron:angel:

SmokeyBare
12-26-2010, 07:38 PM
Ron,

Thanks for this information ! Do you feel it's possible to drill holes like you suggest with out removing the legs from the RV? Just a thought...

I will try finding a parts breakdown of the Landing Legs so I'll have a better understanding of where the Lub needs squirted in to reach the Screw shaft.

Marv

boatto5er
12-26-2010, 08:34 PM
Ron,

Thanks for this information ! Do you feel it's possible to drill holes like you suggest with out removing the legs from the RV? Just a thought...

I will try finding a parts breakdown of the Landing Legs so I'll have a better understanding of where the Lub needs squirted in to reach the Screw shaft.

Marv

Marv, this isn't a real clear drawing, but it may help.

11431

SmokeyBare
12-26-2010, 08:42 PM
Thanks Gus,

Looks like a couple small holes drilled in the square tubing to allow a spray can of lubricant, one of those spray cans with a plastic extension spray tubing, would allow the lub to reach the threaded shaft.

Marv

jimtoo
12-26-2010, 09:06 PM
Marv, that's what I was thinking... maybe extend the legs while hooked up and (not drop the lower pin part) drill a hole near the top .. then use a good lubricant. I was thinking also of just an old fashion squirt can with a good lub in it, like a 90w gear lub.

Jim M

navyAZ1
12-27-2010, 12:08 PM
Ron,

Thanks for this information ! Do you feel it's possible to drill holes like you suggest with out removing the legs from the RV? Just a thought...

I will try finding a parts breakdown of the Landing Legs so I'll have a better understanding of where the Lub needs squirted in to reach the Screw shaft.

Marv

Marv,

I forgot to drill the holes while I had it apart like Gary told me to so I cut a small block of wood just a 1/4" shorter than the drill bit and used it as a stop so the drill bit would only go thru just enough to clear the outter housing and not touch the screw drive. Jim's idea of extending the landing gear while hooked up to the truck sounds like a great way to accomplish the lube job. But it diffinitely needs to be done, Gary told me he talked with a engineer at Venture the landing gear mfg. and he agreed that this needs to be lubed. Wow, wouldn't you think they would have thought of this and put the word out to their customers?

Ron

caissiel
12-27-2010, 09:56 PM
I will do mine as soon as the weather warms up here in Florida. I noticed that mine is turning hard and I am sure that lubing it will not hurt. I have an ACE store near by and I am picking up caps and matching the drill size to the caps.
There should be lots of room from the screw and the tubing as long as we are lower then the gear. I will try to locate the gear and see if I can drill one more hole the grease the gear.

Will report back on my findings.

We use to use chain lube in a spray can at the mill I worked at for hard to reach areas. It was more expensive but it was great lubrication and very taky. And it did have a small pipe to reach deep.

Buford445
12-27-2010, 10:12 PM
Could you drill and tap a hole for a Grease Zerk ??

SmokeyBare
12-27-2010, 10:23 PM
It looks like quite a distance between the outside steel shell of the landing gear and the inside Screw shaft..... to load that with Grease.... could cause more problems than it would help

In My View....

Marv

caissiel
12-27-2010, 10:38 PM
I will drill a hole big enough to see the shaft in order to grease it properly will leave a report tomorrow.
I have modified a lot equipment at my mill to do a good job on this.

jnbhobe
12-28-2010, 08:25 AM
Could you drill and tap a hole for a Grease Zerk ??

Then all you need is 8 tubes of grease to fill the void !!

Buford445
12-28-2010, 09:25 AM
I guess I don't understand what we're lubing then, What are you using for Lubrication ? and what is being Lubed ?

navyAZ1
12-28-2010, 09:34 AM
I will drill a hole big enough to see the shaft in order to grease it properly will leave a report tomorrow.
I have modified a lot equipment at my mill to do a good job on this.

Gary said that he bought a needle type fitting that snapped onto his grease gun and he would then stick the needle thru the hole and inject the grease that way. I'm just using the spray grease that I use on parts of my hitch, it is a gray colored lithium grease it seemed to work very well when I attempted to lube the screw drive and get everything loose again.

Ron

SmokeyBare
12-28-2010, 12:34 PM
Ed,

There is a link to a PDF file that shows how the Landing Gear is made. Look at the bottom of post # 3 by Boatto5er.

The shaft that needs lubricated is a screw shaft that attaches to the square tubing that travels up and down. There is quite a bit of space between the outside main square shaft and the screw shaft. Using a good quality of spray lubrication should provide the kind of protection to the threads and prevent them from any corrosion. Left un protected sure could allow a layer of rust to build on the steel shaft, if it's not moved all that often. I feel oil kind of protection would serve this well with out any build up issues. Grease might work as well but would it run down the screw shaft as well? I doubt it.

Buford445
12-28-2010, 01:47 PM
OK Thanks I will check that out

Gary521
12-29-2010, 12:00 PM
NavyAZ1 you are welcome. Glad to help.
The jack screw lubrication, or lack of it, is the root of most of the landing gear problems.
The method to disassemble the gear before drilling the holes is there to prevent any metal pieces from the drilling operation from getting on the jack screw. If that happens, it could make matters a bit worse. So, yes it is possible to drill the hole with the gear on but the risks are pretty high. If anyone wants to risk this, run the gear either all the way up ( retract ) or all the way down (extend ). If the gear is fully retracted, this just might be a little bit safer for contamination. However, in this case, you would be drilling through both the outer leg and the inner leg. Another, issue on doing this is that you must remove the drop leg first as that is blocking the way too. So it becomes complicated.
The landing gear leg is about 2-1/2" wide with the screw in the middle. I suggested getting a grease injector needle ( from any hardware store ) to do this. The needle is long enough to reach the jack screw. In addition, you can use good EP Moly grease to do the job. Venture told me that they use #2 Moly EP ( Extreme Pressure ) grease. Do not use gobs of grease. After lubing the screw, run the gear up and down a couple of times. Venture also told me that the screw needs to be lubed.
The inner leg has a nut captured on top on it. So when the motor turns, it turns the screw which drives the nut up or down. There is a lot of pressure on this nut. The nut also keeps wiping grease off the screw. Over time - sieze city. If you do not dissassemble the gear before drilling, slight chance of hitting this nut.

Duramax1
12-29-2010, 02:26 PM
http://www.venturemfgco.com/docs/lg%20owners%20manual.pdf


I am somewhat confused. Accoring to the owners manual, "the landing gear is lifetime lubricated and should never require maintenance."

1231ChaseB
12-29-2010, 04:22 PM
I've posted this before but if anyone is interested you might look at the top of the square tube's in the front storage compartment and you might find some grease fitting's ! I have a 2010 3912 Cyclone and found them one day while snooping around looking at stuff in the compartment ! Don't know if they all have it but this one do's ! Their a real bear to get at ! You will need a flashlight to see them and their painted black like the leg's !
chaseb

Gary521
12-30-2010, 11:07 AM
To Duramax 1 and everybody else. Regardless of what you have read or heard, the Venture landing gear IS NOT permanently lubricated. I have taken a few of these things apart to fix issues and there is nothing in construction or materials to make it so. Even Venture admits that you need to do something to lube the jack screw ( told to me by an insider ).
Venture suggests to run the jack screw up and down to its limits to keep the screw greased. This process will only work maybe once. There is nothing to keep the grease there long term. You need to add more.
Adding a second motor lightens the load on each individual motor. However, this still does not fix the underlying problem.
If there is some kind of grease zerk on the newer models, I have no seen it or maybe the gear is not Venture. I just received a new leg from Venture and there was no zerk on it.
There are maybe three or four manufacturers of landing gear. At least one of the other manufacturers recommends greasing the gear once a year.

caissiel
12-30-2010, 08:56 PM
I drilled 4 holes on the landing gears yesterday and did some observation.
The size of my holes were 3/8" because I wanted to be able to observe any existing condition before doing anything else.

The hole is 90deg off the shafts on the back 1 3/8" from the top. the second hole is 15" from the top under the inside shaft.

My observation was that there was no grease to be seen everywhere. But I think it was lubricated with long term Lubricant that penatrates the steel and sticks.

I did the same thing and bought a can of Liquid wrench Motorcycle chain lubricant and sprayed all the accessible parts and after I was done it looked exactly as it looked before my lubrication. Conclusion, I am not sure I improved the situation, but I am sure it is lubricated.

I did test the manual cranking of the landing gear and honestly did not feel any improvement, and it still turns pretty hard for my liking, as hard as my previous trailer was while jacking the truck and trailer as the truck was hooked up. The pin weight of this trailer is the same as the last trailer we had. So I am looking at still improving the landing gear torque. I think I will grease it with high pressure grease and see if I get better improvement.

As for plugging the holes i am using the good old duct tape over the holes so the dirt and dust will not go in. Its imposible to seal with a plug because the inner tube passes by the lower holes and would kick the plug out. There are a few campers in this campground followed my discovery now know what to to when they need service.

Gary521
12-31-2010, 01:37 PM
Caissiel you need grease not a penetrant. There is a lot of load on the jack screw and nut. Like I stated, Venture initially uses #2 Moly EP grease. This does not penetrate into the screw. The reason that you did not see any grease was because there was none there. What little Venture puts on is now long gone. The jack screw on one of my legs was almost worn in half. In this condition, greaseing would do no good. It was time for a replacement.
One more thing. There is a thrust bearing under the horizontal drive gear on the top of the landing gear. Of the several landing gear that I have taken apart, none of these bearings were lubricated. This bearing needs some grease too. However, once is enough.

sunriverman
01-01-2011, 06:55 PM
Great thread. Where can I find a step by step procedure to disassemble the land gear.Obviously you need to start with loading the weight off the land gear and onto the tow vehicle. Then both units need to be taken apart. Please share your tecniique. Thank you.

Gary521
01-02-2011, 10:39 AM
With the leg off the trailer, remove top cap. There is a horizontal drive shaft. Drive out roll pin from vertical gear. Let it drop, you will find it later. Remove "C" clip from drive shaft. Remove drive shaft. Lift off horizontal gear. Under gear is another pin, slide pin out. Lift off washer and bearing. Now, you can remove inner leg and jack screw by lifting off outer leg. Jack screw is attached to inner leg. Once you have it all apart, check jack screw for wear. If all is OK, grease the bearing and jack screw. Now you can drill holes in outer leg. Reassemble. Grease the drive gears. If anything is worn, parts are available from Venture.

As I mentioned, my jack screw was severely worn. This caused a lot of drag on the motor causing the clutch to slip ( clicking noise ). Actually, the screw siezed on the nut. I believe that the lack lube on the jack screw is the root of most folks problems.

I added a second motor, which is nice. Before adding motor, I took apart the other leg. Same problem with the jack screw. I have helped other folks with their landing gear, same problems with jack screws. It's not rocket science to figure out what going on here.

rjr6150
01-02-2011, 10:47 AM
Gary521
We need to have your attend the 2011 CO. chapter rally in FT. Collins Think you would be a very popular guy.

navyAZ1
01-02-2011, 04:20 PM
Hey Gary,

Thanks for all the great info, Ann and I will be passing thru CO sometime this year (can't say just when), but when we do we sure would like to meet up with y'all and buy you dinner. Or, if you're going to be in Goshen for the rally we can meet there.

Thanks,

Ron

Gary521
01-03-2011, 09:57 AM
When is the rally in Ft. Collins?

Gary521
01-03-2011, 03:29 PM
NavyAZ1. Thank You for your generous offer. Glad I can be of help. I feel that we are all kinda in the same boat. I have received some good advice from this forum. A while ago when I was on a trip, a man introduced himself as a forum member and a Bighorn owner. He provided some great tips and things to be aware of. Great to part of a larger family.

caissiel
01-03-2011, 05:59 PM
I am getting ready to remove one of my landing gear, as I cannot make it drive properly. I greased the gears and the screw with #2 Grease and no change. I am afraid the bearing is dry and I want to see it befoare something fails on me.

caissiel
01-04-2011, 05:48 PM
Today was landing gear repair. I removed one of the landing gear jack and noticed right away that the pinion was jaming on the down direction. It was running good on the return direction but on the down direction I noticed the Thrust Channel was moving in the tube. Further observation indicated that the gear was moving on the down direction and getting out of line with the pinion and causing them to jam so hard that I could not turn the the pinion shaft by hand unless moving the channel. I also notice wear on the pinion.

Then I got a vision. Years ago I had the same problem with the landing gear of my previous 5th wheel. I fixed it at home and was able to rebuild the inside parts and greasing it properly.

So I build a heavy clamp with 1/8" by 1-1/2" steel bars and now anchored the Channel to stay in line so the pinion is lined with the gear. There is suppose to be a centering plate there to do the same thing but I could not see how its helping things in mine.

Now I am able to lift the trailer by the landing gear with the manual crank..

Before doing this I greased it with no results and the cranking was so hard I knew someday the reduction gear or motor was going to fail.

rjr6150
01-05-2011, 10:29 PM
When is the rally in Ft. Collins?

Gary the rally is to be held June 9 through the 12 at the Fort Collins KOA. Hope to see you there.

Gary521
01-06-2011, 10:54 AM
Caissiel, you may need to replace the jack screw. As I said, mine was so worn that it siezed and was hard to move. I was able to free it but it was a gonner. You may have to bite the bullet and get a new leg from Venture. If you do, be a bit careful as there are two different lengths of legs that they make. There is also a "lead" leg and a "following" leg on a one motor system. The difference is in the drive shaft.
I was interested is saving a buck so I checked into the leg from Domar. I decided not to go that way because I still was not sure the length was correct and/or the spacing on the mounting tabs was correct.