Tom Raper has a very long history for poor customer response/satisfaction. Not much posted here recently, but go back about 5 years or more and you would find a lot a negative feedback on RVnet regarding Tom Raper.
The gasser grade brake does more than just downshift. It also locks the torque converter, so the engine speed is more directly coupled to the trans. They also completely shut off the fuel, which increase the engine load further. Is it as effective as a exhaust brake? No, but it is adequate.
Have you put a volt meter on the steering column? Confirmed it is going hot when you hit the start? When trouble shooting, you can not jump around. You have to start at the ignition switch and follow the voltage with a meter. There are no shortcuts.
Many of your brand name tire stores are a franchise, so they can buy tires anywhere. Some are company stores and some are not. Firestone brand name stores will price match, so you can get prices form the franchise store and buy the tires from a company owned store.
And it is not always the Chinese, I mean counterfeiters have been around in many areas. The problem is when it is a TIRE, that is a safety issue.X2 Seems odd the the NHTSA only cares about meeting a minimum spec, however when you purchase a certain tire brand, there is an expectation of performance. When that performance is not met, it could very well be catastrophic.
It also seems odd that the dealer was seemingly able to weasel out of being held responsible. The dealer chose to make the purchase a questionable product, but hid that from the customer. One would assume there would be a class action taken against that dealer.
I would suggest painting it metalic white. That way it is not the camper genaric white, but has some class to the color. Think of like the Cadillac Escalade. I think Lexus has an SUV that is that kind of white. Some of the white matalics with some gold tint look good with tan pin striping.
I think metallic white would be a great color for a Class A. are you talking about pearl white?Pearl white is also a good option but expensive. My Pacific Coast is Pearl white with goldish tan bottom. The 2 colors look good together, so just adding some small accent pin striping would set it apart.
I've seen black and it is very imposing. So is dark blue. You might be able to get away with a tan. BUT, I would suggest painting it metalic white. That way it is not the camper genaric white, but has some class to the color. Think of like the Cadillac Escalade. I think Lexus has an SUV that is that kind of white. Some of the white matalics with some gold tint look good with tan pin striping.
Very likely you will have no trouble backing in. The wheel cut on modern motorhomes is pretty tight.
If you do have a problem, there is a way to get around your city ordinance. To the right of your driveway, concrete in some decorative stone. Make it look like a pad around your mail box. Put your mail box on a drop in hole. When you go to park it, lift the mail box out, and drive over the stone. If you have trouble climbing the curb, lay a board down as a small ramp. If they won't let you concrete in a stone pad, then do a search on "grass pavers". These will allow you to build a foundation that you won't sink in under the grass. Then you just drive over your lawn and know one knows the difference.
The other limitation is cooling. Cooling on a gasser is marginal anyway, so once you add a turbo, that adds heat. A street rod can handle it, because of the short duration load. Try pulling some long grade and you will likely get into trouble. It is also very likely they are not running pump gas. I can't imagine trying pay for airplane fuel every time you fill up. Back in the early 80s, there was a company that was selling an after market turbo install. Even though they were retuning it, they eventually ran into problems. I talked to them a year later and they stated they had to remove all of the kits they sold due to issues.
Turbos have now become popular on cars. (I have one on my Cooper). The difference is 2 fold. Somewhere in the late 90s, GM came out with the fast burn head. Basically it consists of a bubble around the spark plug and very little clearance on the rest of the piston surface. Part of the trick is that detonation typically happens along the outer surface of the piston. In a fast burn head, there isn't any fuel out there, so it is less prone to ignite prematurely. All the fuel is concentrated around the plug, so the flame does need to travel very far. It burns all at once. This means you need less advance to have the primary flame active at the right time to push down on the piston. You will see the specs for fast burn heads require less timing advance. As a result, they can run higher compression without detonation. I think now everyone has a fast burn design, they just don't call it that. The second issue is that they are now using direct injection. The advantage to that is that they spray the fuel into the cylinder just before it is going to be ignited by the spark. Because the fuel spray is so late in the stroke, it does not have time to heat up and detonate. So this also allows for higher compression. Those 2 issues are key to why turbos have become popular lately and never really worked out all that well on street cars of the past. Its a lot more than just the ECM preventing detonation by retarding the timing.
Those turbos are for diesels. The OP has a gasser. Installing a turbo on a gasser that is not made for one can get a little tricky. A turbo will raise the compression. One is going to be limited by detonation, so you would not be able to get much boost out of it anyway. Gas engines designed for a turbo typically have lower compression ratio. Yes, some of the modern engines are higher, but those are direct injection which prevents detonation.
Banks not only sells, but does the complete installation, tuning, etc. Sure, this costs several times the cost of headers and mufflers, but gives you several times the torque.Can you prove that? Every independent test I have seen shows Tri-Y to have a broader power band and more power over all than a single long tube header.
The Flowmaster muffler is complete garbage! You will not see much if any improvement installing a Chokemaster muffler. Beyond that, their tech support are complete idiots and do not have any remote clue of anything about engines.
When I first bought my motorhome, it had Flowmaster 50 series. I installed Thorley headers and saw very little performance gain. I then had the exhaust completely redone with Flowmaster 40 series installed. There was a significant improvement in performance, however the noise level was unbearable. I saw parents hiding their kids, when I pulled into the campgrounds. I had the 40 series pulled, and had 70 series installed. The noise level was much more tolerable, but I lost over 2 mpg and 2.6 seconds off my zero to sixty times ~10%) After much wasted experimentation based on Flowmaster's tech support, I gave up and installed Magnaflows. My power came back, and my mileage returned. Not only that, but the noise level inside the coach was quieter than with the 70 series Flowmasters. If you are going to install an exhaust system, you need to have straight through muffler, such Magnaflow or Dynomax. I would also suggest installing a H pipe or X pipe, which can be purchased from Summit Racing. X-pipe is better if you have the space, but it need to be within about 2 feet of the collector.
While Gibson will give you a decent improvement, I personally am partial to Tri-Y design, as it will have a much broader power band.
BTW: Since I was kicking those 70 series Chokemasters around my garage for so many years, I installed on on my 6 cylinder Jeep because it needed a new muffler. I assumed such an over sized muffler wouldn't do much damage, but as a matter of fact, there still felt some power loss in the top end. It was an old Jeep that didn't matter, but I was surprised that it had a negative impact on such a small motor.
There is NOTHING wrong with a carbureted engine. From 1991 to 1995 GM was throttle body. While this helped cold starts and altitude, it does NOTHING for performance and is less efficient than a carburetor, because it does not atomize the fuel as well. Intake manifold designs were still limited by the wet intake, so no advantage there. Ford fuel injection of the same time period was absolute junk. It was not even a closed loop system. Back when my engine had a carb, in cold weather my motorhome got better mileage than my brother's 1995 TBI pickup truck. There is no real advantage to fuel injection until they went to the high pressure port injection.
It was also in the 1996/97 years that GM came out with the fast burn heads. The combination of better head design, and port injection brought about significant improvements in HP and mileage.
As far as the trans is concerned, the 4L85e is one very tough trans. It is the same design as the old TH400 and shares many internal parts. The only limitation is that it uses a variable slip torque converter. Great design, but requires changing the fluid more often. 15K miles, max. I had a dealer worn me about that with a car I had of the same design. While there were many out there replacing transmissions in the low 100k mile range, I had 180K on mine when I sold it and never had a problem. I drive my vehicles hard, and even towed with it. You just have to change the fluid more often.
Personally, the 2 biggest issues you face with age are rust and long term stress to the shell which potentially causes leaks. Everything else can be fixed. Personally, if I were looking at the 90s coaches, I would be looking for a DP and specifically a Foretravel. Very well built from that time period. You will also find the DPs of that era got better fuel mileage than the modern diesels, due to smog requirements.
The pump is most likely the rubber bellows type. Since it is just rubber flexing, it does not hurt it to run dry. OK, maybe you consumed some of its life just because of the hours put on it, but no specific damage for it running continuously.
Oh, if only you had been on RVnet back in ~2000. While historically there had been a lot of issues, Fleetwood bashing was pretty common back then. Fleetwood got much better over the years as all manufacturers did. But Fleetwood did not have a good reputation back then.
I use a hitch haul from Walmart. They sell an adapter for putting bikes on it. The nice thing about the hitch haul is it can be used for other stuff. I've tied stuff under the bikes that I did not want inside the coach.
One other advantage of using a hitch haul is that there is solid metal to mount lighting. Since the Hitch haul is mounted on the toad, the lights on the hitch haul are my toad lights, they are isolated from the toad.