Fuel Saving Tires and More Road Wander

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September 8, 2008

In the last post, part of what I talked about was a new fuel saving technology that Goodyear is implementing in the tread of some of their commercial applications, but I was waiting for more information on RV applications and their benefits. I have since found that the G670 tire works in RV applications, and it has the same technology built into the tread compound, but it is still unknown whether the benefits are equal to the commercial applications. In any case, if you’re in the market for new tires, it wouldn’t hurt to check out these new Goodyear treads.

A lot of people are under the impression that sloppy steering and road wander only happen to older coaches, or those with a lot of miles. But I have seen yet another case in which a new coach came right out of the factory with sloppy steering. A customer came into our shop last week with a Country Coach Magna 630-it had only 2,200 miles on it, but the steering drag link had already been replaced several times. Now, I want to preface this by saying that problems like this are typically not the fault of the coach manufacturer, but the company that manufactures the component. In the case of this part, my understanding is that the manufacturer will only warranty its replacement when there is more than .070 thousandths play, and that’s a huge amount. Particularly when you consider that it’s only one junction in the steering system. It’s not hard to imagine that, if you have several components in a steering system and all of them are allowed such high tolerances, the steering is going to feel loose. And, to be fair, it’s not necessarily the “fault” of the component manufacturer; I’m sure they have their reasons for allowing the tolerances that they do, but it’s not working in motorhome applications. This isn’t necessarily a dangerous problem, but it is one that require a lot of steering correction, and that makes a coach difficult and tiring to drive.

To address the problem, the first thing we’re focusing on is taking off his existing joint, and installing another one with grease fittings on it; the grease can help take up some of the slack for a while. In the mean time, we’re going to take his existing joint and see how we can improve it. In some instances, we can see where we can take some of the slack out, either by adding shims or by rebuilding them with different parts. Our goal is to eliminate as much of that play as possible so that it doesn’t wander when you’re out on the road.

This is going to be a relatively short post, because we’re still working on this project. When it’s completed, I’ll let you know what we found and the steps we took to fix it.

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  1. Hello Owen,
    Thank you for your feedback. That is a very significant improvement in mileage! At Henderson’s we really take a systematic approach to mileage and handling.
    If we can reduce resistance in any form ,rolling, aerodynamic, or in the drive train you can expect improvement. We will be covering this at our “Lift The Guard” event this weekend in Grants Pass, OR 417 SW Henderson, LN, along with thousands of $ in donated RV & pick-up prizes to help support & recognize the soldiers & families. If you can’t make it you may make a donation for raffle tickets by calling 541-479-2882 ext 301. Checks need to made out to the Redwood Lion’s Club. Cost 1 for $10 or 3 for $20. Happy Camping!

  2. Owen B. McCullen

    At the Redmond, OR Rally I bought 8 new Goodyear G670 tires and have been very pleased with them so far. They are on a Monaco Executive which tows a 26 ‘ tilt bed landscape trailer loaded with a storage box and a GMC 3/4 ton heavy duty crew cab diesel 4WD pickup, which is also loaded. Total weight runs aroudn 55 to 57,500 pounds. I weigh before every trip on the free Oregon log truck scales. Shortly after purchasing the tires, I drove from Western Oregon to Southern Florida, returning the following spring. Following my round about route resulted in a trip of over 7,000 miles. I made two changes simultaneously and had improved mileage, from a former 5.3 MPG to an average 7.2 MPG. The two changes were the new tires (and scrupulous monitoring of tire pressures) and reducing my running speed from an averge 70 MPH to 58 MPH average. I can’t say how much of a role the tires played because of the serious reduction in average speed, but something worked. The speed reduction also made my wife a whole lot less nervous going down the road and left me less tired at day’s end.

  3. Hello Don,
    We do run a facility in Grants Pass, OR called Henderson’s Line-Up Brake & RV. We also sell our product line called SuperSteer. We do wheel alighnment and brake work on most any vehicle. However we specialize in RV & pick-ups. We got started in automotive and and still do passenger cars & street rods. We use this experience to find ways to improve current vehicles. Recently we built a rear trac bar for my brother’s 55 Chevy. It no longer rubs the tires on the rear fenderwells during hard cornering. In Arkansas we don’t have a lot of dealers. If you want to have us try to locate a good dealer near you I recommend you call or email our SuperSteer Division. Phone & email is 888-898-3281, [email protected] ask for Scott . We will be in Perry GA for the FMCA Rally if you want us to check something there .Best Wishes, Robert


    If my memory serves me correct you run a Repair Facility. Is this just for RV’s? Are you a Dealer? Where do we find a Facility such as yours. I live in Northwest Arkansas.

    Don Loftis