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BMC (Bluebird Motor Coach Unique Issues) If you have a unique issue with your BMC coach and it can't be answered in one of the other forums here, then this is where you can list it.....List your BMC Parts here too.

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Old 04-25-2008
Lee Davis's Avatar
Lee Davis Lee Davis is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Wherever we are parked
Posts: 1,624
Default Ride Height Valve Problem?

Last time I cranked up the engine on my 95 BMC 37 and retracted the jacks (after the air gauges read 120 psi) I noticed the left front wheel did not come up the full amount. In fact it looked like the wheel might not clear the fender if I turned the steering wheel. I called HWH (I'm also having a jack fading problem) and they said it was probably a ride height valve problem and would be a Spartan chassis fix. I have not moved the coach at this point (will need to in about 2 weeks) but Frank at HWH said if I backed up and came forward and put on the brakes quickly it may self correct and come up. I have not tried this yet, but in an effort to learn more about the problem if that doesn't work (and it may need fixing anyway even if that does work) I thought I'd run it by all of you experts for advice. I noticed there apparently are several different ride height valves used on Bluebirds and wondered which were used on the BMC's in case I need to get one ordered somewhere. Also, I assume a truck place can send someone out to fix it at the spot, in case it doesn't come up and I can't drive it anywhere.

I'm reasonably handy and also was wondering how hard these units are to replace.

Any help or suggestions would be greatly aqppreciated

Lee and Jacque Davis - Full Timers

Lee - 423-292-5767 or Jacque 423-262-9569
or lnjdavis@gmail.com Please call or email instead of private messages

1995 BMC 37
300 HP Cummins 6CTA 8.3 Turbocharged Diesel
Boldly Going Nowhere
http://www.bbirdmaps.com/index.cfm #117
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Old 04-25-2008
jwasnewski jwasnewski is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Dahlonega, GA
Posts: 1,111

I do not have a BMC but I carry an extra valve in my coach. The advise you were given to back up and move forward may correct the problem. I have done that on my coach twice in four years. I have never found why this happens. Everything is fine now. When it occurs again who knows?
Leroy Eckert
Dahlonega, GA

Former "Smoke N Mirrors" caretaker
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Old 04-25-2008
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Dieselbird01 Dieselbird01 is offline
John Wyatt – Administrator/Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Titusville
Posts: 3,959

Hi Lee,

I'm not an expert and I don't know much about BMC coaches but on my PT-36 there's just one ride height valve for the front axle, it controls both sides. My drive axle has two ride height valves - one for each side.

Just in case moving your coach doesn't fix your problem and you decide to replace the valve yourself I'll pass along what I ran into when I replaced my front ride height valve a few years ago... Replacing the valve wasn't hard BUT keep in mind that this valve raises and LOWERS the coach. Working on this valve puts you at SERIOUS risk of being crushed if the coach is not PROPERLY supported (leveling jacks are NOT proper support). A wrong move can let the coach drop all the way to it's lowest position! After the valve is replaced, the linkage has to be adjusted to set the ride height to the proper specification (you will need to find out how to measure the height from your documentation or maybe from BB). The coach needs to be on a level surface and you have to be under the coach while making adjustments to the linkage which again puts you at SERIOUS risk of being crushed if the coach is not PROPERLY supported. When my valve went bad my coach was parked inside the storage building so I had access to my support blocks and I had a good level surface to work on. It was still a little scary being under there messing with the leveling valve linkage :-)
John Wyatt
Titusville, Florida
1991 40' WLWB-WTB
Body Number F095567
My Location: http://www.bbirdmaps.com/user1.cfm?user=4

1991 40' WB ...From 2008 - Present
1984 ½ PT-36 .From 2000 - 2008
1973 FC-31 .....From 1991 - 2001
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Old 04-26-2008
Mike Brody Mike Brody is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Palm City, Florida
Posts: 12


Call Chris McCord at Spartan. He is service manager and very knowledgeable.

Ride height is critical to have proper load distribution as well as angle of drive shaft.

I had the wrong ride-height and had to replace the universals and rear input seals.

Good luck,
'97 BMC 40'
'07 & '08 Mercury Mariner Hybrid toad

Mike & Judi Brody
3109 SW Captiva Court
Palm City, Florida 34990
(v) 772-463-1078
(c) 215-582-3848
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Old 05-11-2008
BCRoamer BCRoamer is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Boulder City
Posts: 318
Default Ride Heigth

I just replaced all the air bags and both ride heigth control valves in our coach. I had it done by a professional, I do most work on our coach, that said the idea of the coach dropping on me scares me off. We were two lots down from an accident at ODR in Indio a few years ago. A Prevost dropped on and killed a mechanic working on the air system, it took EMT's over an hour to get him out.

If I had a proper garage with proper jack stands I may risk it, but I'm getting way to old to take those kinds of chances.
Lance & Jan Crowley
1993 WB #104663 (SOLD)
Boulder City, NV
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Old 05-11-2008
Jim Barone Jim Barone is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 79

I had a similiar problem two weeks ago...Full gage pressure but the air bags would not pump up...called a local rv tech and he suggested running the pressure up to max and then pumping the brakes until the pressure went down...did this three times and the bags pumped up...I think I have gotten water in the air system...need to service the dryer. Jim Barone 1991WBWL currently in western Kentucky
Jim and JoAnn Barone
1991 WLWB
Fulltiming in Tubac, Arizona
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Old 05-12-2008
Kurt Achenbach Kurt Achenbach is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Cocoa
Posts: 127

HI Lee,

I had problems with one of the leveling valves leaking a year or so ago. Got the replacement from Spartan for the front two and had them installed locally, as I recall they removed the front wheels to acces the job. Once I saw these flimsy plastic valves and the way they showed craks, I had the rear ones replaced as well. No problems since but I know they will not last for ever.
Kurt Achenbach
97' BB BMC 37'
Cocoa, FL
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Old 01-02-2009
Bullwinkle Bullwinkle is offline
Don Baker
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Five Points
Posts: 6
Default BMC Bump

Glenn at Coachcraft (who worked for BB service) told me to go forward a bit and then hit the brakes. It works. Mine does it every so often. I have no water in the system so thats not the problem. Glenn calls it the "BMC Bump". No one yet has come up with a good reason as to why this happens.

Don Baker
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Old 01-02-2009
fxdwg fxdwg is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: okc
Posts: 3,843


Bring her up here, I've got stands to do the job. I'll bet the ferrule that moves with the control arm sticks and that's what allows for the "BMC Bump" to fix it. We can take a look at the aquahot too. We' have to look at why only one side is low. That may not be the control valve. I'm pretty sure you've only got one valve per axle, so you should have 2 valves. We can do both. Supposed to be almost 70 here tomorrow!
96 WTOS 42'

don't waste your time with a usa-spec ipod adapter- poor products with poor support
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Old 10-27-2009
utahfishing utahfishing is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Saint George, Utah
Posts: 4
Default BMC Leaner

Hi; We have a 96 BMC 40'. Mine leans in the rear drivers side. I got under it the other day (I did block the rear up). My SWAY BAR Bushings were gone on one side and shot on the other. I called Spartan and was informed that the Sway Bars were not installed by Them. I checked and they are ipd. I called ipd in Portland and they have sold the suspension portion of the company to Roadmaster. I called and they ordered a new set for me (I ordered new front ones also). They are $61.00 each. I will put these on and try your forward and reverse fix and see if mine works. Appreciate this site. Bob & Yvonne Neary (Saint George, Utah & Yuma, Az.)
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