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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > Atwood jacks Click Click Click Click

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plascell

Lynchburg, VA

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Posted: 05/27/09 07:27pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Ever wondered what is wrong when the electric Atwood jacks keep clicking and don't raise your 5th wheel ? There is a safety clutch inside the gear box on the end of the motor. It isn't really serviceabile (except maybe by a machineist). The clutch is made up of 6 ball bearings that normally stay in a detent in the side of a gear and cause a guide plate to transfer power to another gear. The bearings are under significant compression to hold them in the detent holes, but if the strain on the power train is to great, the bearings pop out and "click" as they settle into the next set of holes. It seems like once the jacks start to "click" they will do it more often as there is some wearing of the detent holes and in the pressure plate. There isn't much that can be done as there is no adjustment, short of using a very thin "shim" washer to apply more pressure. This isn't a plier and screw driver project as you will have to fashion a fixture to release and re-apply compression to the assembly.

Here are pictures Just thought you might like to know why you have to buy a complete motor assembly when the clicking happens most of the time.


Pete W4WWQ DX70 IC-2800 Pressure-Pro X-10 camera
2006 Chevy 3500 CC LB 4WD DRW Duramax auto-6
2003 Cardinal 29WB LX EU3000is Roto-Choks 300W from www.amsolar.com

stevesandidge

kingsport tn

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Posted: 05/27/09 08:10pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

the motor/gear box assy is about 340 bucks or so, for the bottom end unit. they make a higher torque unit for more load, but the price goes up too. the belville washers supple the pressure, and the 1st time they flex the get weaker n weaker every time.
steve


steve sandidge
RVIA certified rv tech
camping world rv university
class 54
fix-it rv service
USMC 1982-1994
91 holiday rambler imperial 37'

Joners

Idaho Falls, Idaho

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Posted: 05/27/09 10:10pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I don't have a 5th wheel, but I do have Atwood electric jacks with remote on my Lance camper. If I don't stop the jacks in the fully raised position when I am raising them when loading the camper, they will click like you describe. Otherwise, they seem to work just fine raising and lowering. Is that the same thing that is happening? I just figured that, that is what they do when they have reached the fully raised position. I have never needed to fully extended them to load the camper.
joners


1996 Chevy K1500 4X4 Short Box, 5.7L Vortec, E rated tires, Lance Model 820 with Cabover Struts, Firestone Ride-Rite Air Bags, KYB MonoMax Shocks, Torklift Stable Loads, Happijac Truck Camper Tiedowns and Turnbuckles, Honda Eu2000i Inverter/Generator.

plascell

Lynchburg, VA

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Posted: 05/28/09 06:51am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Joners, I think you speak of a single tongue jack. I would think the same principle of a safety clutch applies. In my case on the 5er the jacks start clicking just as the trailer is lifted off the hitch. I get into trouble when I have to lower the trailer to get level in a poorly designed CG and then have to raise the trailer again to be able to hitch up. I have to use the manual hand crank to raise it as the motor assembly clutch is slipping. Not helping is the fact that water has been moved forward to the waste tanks and added more weight. (My king pin weight is 2020 lbs with empty waste tanks.) My jack application is probably too close to design specs, but seems OK for most usage. Your tongue jack probably has a lot of excess capacity.

plascell

Lynchburg, VA

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Posted: 06/02/09 05:05pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Fixed my slipping clutch another way . . . Installed 2nd motor and gear head from salvaged 1996 trailer parts. I think I can now lift the rear of my TV off the ground If it acts up again I will put shim washers under the belville washers to increase the tension . .

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