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Old 06-20-2015, 01:45 PM   #31
Bus Geek
 
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Originally Posted by crazycal View Post
I don't think you want to leave a dead battery connected to a new one. Pretty sure it will suck juice out of the new battery.
He is correct.

Leaving a dead battery in the chain will drain the new battery, and the bus still wont start.

The dead battery's may be shorted out inside. You don't want them in the bus.

We see this all the time at the bus shop. One battery will die, and kill the second battery.

This is why we have converted most the 400 bus fleet to a single 8D battery VS two to four group 31's.

Nat
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:02 AM   #32
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Talking with Clint about the situation and he feels that the easiest fix for this is to connect an external air hose to the Schrader valve under the bus and fill up the tank until it releases the fail safe on air brakes and push or pull it back far enough to get to the batteries and then just pull on the emergency brake to stop it.

?????? comments ????????
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Old 06-21-2015, 10:48 AM   #33
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Yeah except mine has those stupid lucas-girling fake air brakes that use hydraulic instead of air to uncage the brakes.
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Old 06-21-2015, 11:19 AM   #34
Mini-Skoolie
 
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So I spent a bunch of yesterday hacking on this. Went out and got a group 31 and then proceeded to spend a pretty good amount of flailing getting to the starter terminals. I disconnected the battery cables from the positive and negative starter terminals and then attached the super beefy jumper cables I have from the new battery to the positive starter terminal (which is just a bolt) and to the frame (basically same place that I disconnected the dead battery ground cable from).

Then I realized (after turning key and nothing happening) that there's one more cable running from the dead batteries, which I believe is lower current and powers at least the ignition switch if not some more of the cabin electronics. I happen to have another pair of (very dinky) jumper cables, and this one thankfully happens to have a disconnect lead under the bus near the battery box, so I can pretty easily disconnect the dead battery cable and attach the positive jumper cable to the lead and the ground cable to the frame nearby.

So I turn the key halfway and all the electronics turn on. I'm getting pretty excited, thinking this might be it, and then I turn it to start and..... just a very quiet whine. Like I'm pretty certain that the starter wasn't engaging at all. I don't have the diagnostic manual on hand, but it describes the scenario fairly accurately and suggests double checking contacts to the starter.

The starter positive terminal is just a bolt, and I'm wondering if I'm not getting a good enough connection to the bolt with the jumper cables? Also there are a few other cables that are attached there with the standard eyelets. Would it make sense to go out and buy a short piece of battery cable with the standard eyelet disconnect and then bolt it into place so that it has better contact? It's extra confusing, because I've been using that same bolt to charge the dead batteries when they were still connected (both with car and with AC charger), so I know that it's the right terminal and that the bolt itself is conductive. I'm also wondering if it's possible I accidentally removed one of the wires that was supposed to be connected to that post. Digging around in there is a nightmare, and most of the cables go straight into this enormous bundle, so finding out where they go has been tricky.

I have a few backup plans, but I'm not in love with any of them:

- Try to cage the parking brakes and push. I'm not excited about figuring out how to cage the lucas girlings after doing some research, and I'd have to push the bus pretty much into the street in order to get to the battery box. If for some reason it decided not to start once I replaced the battery (being ornery or just having another mechanical issue), I'd be pretty up creek. I could maybe maybe tow it with my station wagon, but that feels pretty scary.

- I could cut a window into the battery box. From there I could disconnect each of the cables and then reattach them properly to the new battery. Then I'd have a bunch of good leads making contact and wouldn't have to worry about making bad jumper cable connections.
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:03 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urban_racoons View Post
Yeah except mine has those stupid lucas-girling fake air brakes that use hydraulic instead of air to uncage the brakes.
So get under the back with a wrench and back off your brake pots. It takes less than 5 min with a half inch wrench.

Other than cost, the lucas-girling brake system is the most fail safe hydraulic brake system you can get.
No other hydraulic brake system will actavate the rear brakes to bring you safely to a stop if you loose hydraulic brake pressure.


You won't get half the power you need using booster cables to connect the battery.

It needs to be connected by the battery cable lugs for good power transfer. Nat
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Old 06-21-2015, 12:27 PM   #36
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Ok dumb question time: what is a brake pot?
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Old 06-22-2015, 03:31 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urban_racoons View Post
Ok dumb question time: what is a brake pot?
Here's some reading on the subject: Ford B-700 Hyd E- Brake Question - School Bus Fleet Magazine Forums

This post has some diagrams: 1993 F700 Brake problems HELP PLEASE !!!!! - Page 2 - Ford Truck Enthusiasts Forums
This picture shows the parking brake switch I mentioned above (TW-11).


The two things to the farthest right in the pic.

Nat
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Old 06-27-2015, 03:11 PM   #38
Mini-Skoolie
 
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Awesome - thanks so much for the brake diagrams - I can definitely use those...

I ended up getting it started! Threw in one group 31, but Nat was right, jumper cables don't have enough contact to start it up. So I went and found a couple new battery cables (pretty short ones) and ended up having to run one through the firewall. The starter is super hard to get to, but I was able to get it in there.

So I started it up with the new battery sitting in the front passenger steps area. Definitely one of the hackier things I've ever done, but enough to clear the driveway wall and get out onto the street where I re-wire (properly) all the crap that I had just jury-rigged.

Totally worked out - thanks yall!
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Old 06-27-2015, 04:08 PM   #39
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Glad it worked out!
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Old 06-28-2015, 01:26 AM   #40
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Big thumbs up.

Nat
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