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Old 06-02-2013, 01:40 AM   #1
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Default Lift cable adjustment

Hello all. I recently purchased a 1998 31' WB and am having an issue with the lift cables. When I purchased the camper, the previous owner told me that slide out would stick sometimes. Anyway, this was the only thing I could find wrong with the camper at all. Getting a good deal, I purchased it. Now having owned the camper for several months and using quite a bit, I'd like to make some repairs. Upon further inspection, I have found that the top front sits lower than the rear, by almost 3". The adjustment screws for the front are out of adjustment, meaning they are sticking out much further than the rear screws. The manual is very vague on exactly which way to turn the adjustment screws. My question is this, can anyone tell me which way to adjust the screws to achieve more lift in the front. My thought is that (if possible) I would tighten the screw (exposing more thread) to achieve more lift. But then I was thinking that maybe if I shorten the screw, this would in fact increase cable length and allow a longer pull. I think my initial thought was correct, but any input would be greatly appreciated. The screw is sticking out so far that my plan is to drop & support the top, back off the adjust screws, cut off the swags & install new swags. Thinking this is the trick. Please help
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Old 06-02-2013, 06:35 AM   #2
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Yes, tighten the screws to raise. (more screw sticking out) Check the pulleys and make sure the are all in good shape, also check that the cables are not frayed and in good condition. If everything is good then do what you were thinking and put new swages on the end that bolts to the top.
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Old 06-02-2013, 08:20 AM   #3
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Thanks for the quick response. I took a quick look underneath before, but I think a more thorough look is in order. Being my first Hi-Lo (or camper for that reason), I just wasn't sure of the procedure. For a brief moment I was thinking that it the cable was longer that it would allow it to travel further, thus increasing lift. I definitely think that once I square up the top on all corners, that my slideout won't hang up at all.
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Old 06-02-2013, 09:50 AM   #4
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No, you SHORTEN the cable to increase lift. But, be careful that you do not shorten it too much. If you do, you can damage the lift system or the top where the cable bolts to it. You should adjust the cables all around so that the top sits fairly level (measured from the outrigger to the lower edge of the top) and so that the seal on the top touches the lip on the bottom half (to keep the bugs out). You may have to check the seal from the inside with the bottom half trim removed.

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Old 06-02-2013, 11:55 AM   #5
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After further inspection I believe to have found the problem or at least part of it. It appears that one of my sets of pulleys (for the front) has broken. I found several pieces under the camper while looking, so this must have just happened in this set up. I only found pieces to make one pulley though, so possibly this has been the problem all along. Anyway, being that its Sunday and I can't get parts. I'm going to cut 2x4's of equal length and drop the top, to relieve pressure on the cables, which are now taught on the pulley bolt. Measurements are currently as follows: RF 27", LF 28", RR 30", LR 30" (all measured from bottom of camper to frame). Once u get a new pulley on, I'll see where everything measures at.
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Old 06-02-2013, 10:49 PM   #6
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Default Broken pully

It is a good thing you are handy. Don't know if you need a source for parts. Here is one. Jay Simon at Mantelli trailer sales. 1-716625-8877 or email jay@Mantelli.com They will immediately mail parts out to any address. Best of luck in getting your HiLo fine tuned.
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Old 06-03-2013, 11:59 AM   #7
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I wasn't able to find the replacement pulleys at any of my local dealers and online did not prove to be much better, for the Hi-Lo replacements. I checked at Home Depot and Lowes, but all they have in a 3" pulley, is for
1/8" cable bore (for garage door repair). While similar application, I'd like to get the larger bore just to be safe. I did talk to a guy at a local garage door repair place and he said that he has what I needed (3" pulley for 3/16" bore cable). Anyway, I'll swing by and pick up a couple from him and install this evening. I will post how it turns out.
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Old 06-03-2013, 03:15 PM   #8
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You can order them here, Home - JR REPAIR
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Old 06-08-2013, 01:50 PM   #9
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Update all, the rains have finally stopped so I was able to do some work. I ended up adding 2 new 3" pulleys that I picked up at a garage door place local to me. I ha also gotten similair pulleys form Home Depot, but they were very cheaply made. Anyway, the new pulleys went in pretty easily, but I had to get a 3/8" x 3" bolt to go through them. The existing bolt was 1/2" x 3" and the nut is welded to the bracket. I used stainless, so I think it will work fine. I ran the front adjust bolts back in and hooked up the new pulleys. NOTE, the cables both had a strong cast (twist) to them, which I'm sure is from the extreme adjustments from before. Well, the new pulleys brought my front end measurement up to 28" on both front corners. I'm going to let the cables sit in the stretches position for a little while, then adjust to get a tight seal up front. I should be able to adjust both front screws out to get the proper lift, so no need to mess with cutting and adding new swags. After doing this for $20, it begs the question as to why I would have purchased new nylon pulleys for $60 each from Hi-Lo. I guess you could make your own cables all together for really reasonably. Just swag both ends and attach a forged eyebolt as an adjustment screw... Something to think about. Hope this post helps anyone with a similair issue.
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Old 08-23-2014, 01:06 PM   #10
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Default Cable adjustment

I had/have a problem adjusting my top on my 17T as well. I cut equal length 2X4's 30" for all 4 corners. Lowered the unit to relieve the tension on the cables. Then I tightened all of the slack out of the cables with about 1/2 up and down movement in each cable. The top was about 1/2 inch high all the way around. I loosened the cables about 1" and brought the R/F, R/R. and L/F down to the seal meeting the lip on the bottom half. Problem here is that I am out of loosen adjustment on the L/R cable with still being able to have a good tight lock down on the lock nut on the cable. So from the L/F to the L/R there is still about a 1/2 inch rise from front to back. The top shows level using a 3' level but is there a way to stretch the L/R cable to get some more length to loosen it to drop that corner down?

Thanks,

Mike

I am still waiting to see if someone has a suggestion about this or if I need to put in a new longer cable for this adjustment. I am going to bring it home one more time before winter gets here to put the tailored cover on it and see if I can adjust the cables one more time to line up the seals on this puppy! Thank all of you very much!

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Old 10-21-2017, 09:33 PM   #11
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Hi, I am in process of adjusting the cables. No issues finding or understanding how to tighten them.
My ceiling bed hits fridge when I am lowering the bed, so tipped me off maybe cables too long. Also, the bed slopes forward, which means the roof is not high enough.
Should there be any slack in the cables with the top completely down? The rear cables had quite slack, and I tightened them about 3/4 of an inch worth. The front have a little tension such that I cannot tighten by hand.
Looking for a starting point.
I understand that the bulb seal should just touch, but it is so worn that it will not be a great indicator. I dont want to over raise the roof, but dont want to tighten incrementally either. A good starting point is the goal.
1997 model.
I think that the two rails are not supposed to be exactly the same height, seems like the outer (roof one) should be slightly lower than the interior rail when raised.???
I have downloaded all the pdf forms, but there is no detail about cables other than where they are located and how to tighten them.
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Old 10-21-2017, 11:14 PM   #12
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marininn, when the top is down, it should rest on the "outriggers" (the short square supports that stick out of the lower half on the sides). It won't go lower than that, no matter how long you make the cables. On my trailer, there is still a small amount of tension in the cables when the top is down on the outriggers.

In my case too, the kitchen cabinet touches (rubs) against the rail at the end of the lower half. I think you just have to live with some of these minor faults in this model trailer.

In my trailer, the outer trim piece (on the upper half) is somewhat lower than the one on the lower half except near the door and along the back edge; there, it's even.

You are probably looking at needing to replace the bulb seal. It can be purchased from J&R, but you can probably use a different style too. One of our members, maestro123 used garage door sweep, and I can see how that would be effective, although it might not be as durable.

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Old 10-21-2017, 11:24 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike M View Post
...<snip>...The top was about 1/2 inch high all the way around. I loosened the cables about 1" and brought the R/F, R/R. and L/F down to the seal meeting the lip on the bottom half. Problem here is that I am out of loosen adjustment on the L/R cable with still being able to have a good tight lock down on the lock nut on the cable. So from the L/F to the L/R there is still about a 1/2 inch rise from front to back. The top shows level using a 3' level but is there a way to stretch the L/R cable to get some more length to loosen it to drop that corner down?

Thanks,

Mike ...<snip>...
Mike, if you were 1/2" too high and you loosened all cables by 1", I don't understand how you are still too high at one corner. Perhaps if you "cycle" the top up and down a couple times, it will align better. Rather than use a level, which requires your trailer be perfectly level, I measure from each of the outriggers on the lower half to the bottom of the top half. The distance from the outriggers to the lip on the lower half should be equal at all corners, so if the distance from the outriggers to the top is fairly equal, then the bulb seal will be at the same height all around.

I don't see how you can stretch a cable. If it needs to be longer, I think you'll have to replace it. Cables CAN be spliced to create a longer one, but I would not trust such an alteration.

- Jack
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Old 10-22-2017, 07:13 PM   #14
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Keep in mind this is an old post, so posters previous to me might be 3 years ago.

One question I will solve soon enough - Is 1 inch at the adjuster bolt equal to one inch of height at that corner? I suspect that the way the ram pushes on a pulley that it cuts the cable pull in half, so 1 inch at the adjuster (in the wheel well) is equal to inch at the corner???

You would either need to understand basic pulley math, or just have memorized the answer to answer this, thanks.
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Old 10-22-2017, 11:36 PM   #15
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No, I don't think the fact that the cables go over moving pulleys has anything to do with how high the top goes. If you shorten the cable at the adjusting bolt by 1", I believe it will raise that corner by the same 1", simply because the cable is that much shorter.

But the fact that the hydraulic cylinder moves a mount holding 4 pulleys produces a 1:2 difference in cylinder movement compared to top movement. So, the cylinder only has to move 1 foot to raise the top 2 feet.

Think of it this way. If the cylinder is held in place and you shorten the cable by 1", it pulls the other end of the cable that same 1" toward the adjusting bolt.

I can see though, how you might have thought there'd be a difference though. If the adjusting bolt changed the length of the cylinder ram, then there would be a 1:2 difference.

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Old 10-23-2017, 10:04 AM   #16
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Nice, Jack! A couple of days ago, I painted a spot on the cables just to show the travel. I lube the cables in the up and down position because of this. But the movement of the paint spots enforce the fact that the cylinder head moves the same amount as the top, a direct 1:1 ratio. As you said, tightening the cable adjusting bolt about 1" will shorten the cable about 1", thus raising the top about 1".
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Old 10-23-2017, 11:22 AM   #17
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Tree, I think you possibly misunderstood what I posted. If the cylinder moves a pulley mount out 1 foot, it will actually lift the top 2 feet (a 1:2 ratio). Another way of thinking of this is that a 1 foot movement of the pulley will produce a NEW foot of cable length on BOTH sides of the pulley, for a total of 2 feet.

However, it's possible your trailer does not have the moving pulley system and in that case, the cylinder movement to top movement IS 1:1.

But, as you said, the adjusting bolts produce a simple 1:1 lengthening or shortening of the cables.

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Old 10-23-2017, 03:45 PM   #18
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Now I visualize what your saying! Your right, a 1 foot move of the pulley block is 1:2 for the cables. But, I'm pretty sure the cable adjustments are pretty close to 1:1. I really do fractional adjustments rather than all at once, just for safety.
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Old 10-23-2017, 04:39 PM   #19
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You've got it Tree! And the cable adjustments ARE 1:1. They can't be otherwise. Like you, I do the adjustments a bit at a time.

Great minds? (Or maybe we're BOTH senile! )

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Old 10-27-2017, 08:33 PM   #20
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be prepared for dealer sticker shock! i never buy anything from any dealers! maybe thats why i still got less than $400 in it now , still since last oct.?
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