1998 Jayco Cascade Lift Problems

Discussion in 'Lift Systems' started by Lynnea V, Nov 28, 2019.

  1. Lynnea V

    Lynnea V New Member

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    Hi friends,

    I'm new to this forum and new to working on campers, too. I'm an A&P aircraft mechanic by trade and do what I can to work on my car and now on my parents' 1998 Jayco Heritage Series Cascade. They're working hard to get it in tip-top shape again, and we were just getting ready to install a new canvas on the PUP when apparently the roof collapsed on them.

    Because of constant rain and lack of manpower, we haven't been able to lift the roof yet and get a good look at what's going on. At first I thought maybe a cable had broken, but considering the whole roof fell down and not just one corner, we're thinking it might be something with the winch. Now, my dad said the Jayco dealer claimed that the lift system had a built-in break to prevent the roof from falling in like that. The winch handle moves freely in both directions with no noise or resistance. Is the brake a ratchet and pawl system? I read somewhere that it might be a clutch, but I don't see anything like that on any pictures?

    Any troubleshooting help would be greatly appreciated while we're stuck inside for the next few days thanks to the rain. Thanks!
     
  2. bondo54

    bondo54 Active Member

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  3. SteveP

    SteveP Well-Known Member

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    It's a combination of pawl and clutch. The clutch holds against the pawl until the handle is turned backward, allowing the clutch to release. But the pawl is what actually holds the winch. If the pawl failed the roof might fall.

    There is a single cable attached to winch, which is then attached to the 4 corner cables through a square yoke. This is the more likely point of failure. Only accessible from the inside of the camper. You'll find it in a box step across the end of the camper where the winch is mounted.
     
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  4. Raycfe

    Raycfe Waterford Ct.

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    You may need a #1 or #2 square bit for the screws of the step
     
  5. Lynnea V

    Lynnea V New Member

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    Hey guys, thanks for the help! Finally found the time and gathered enough people to lift the roof on the camper.

    Firstly I climbed in and took the lid off the seat that hides the winch and cables. The winch itself looked fine but the main cable was all unfurled. I tugged on it a bit, though, and it didn't seem broken.

    DSC_1268.JPG

    Then I pulled off another panel to look at the plate/four cable lifting system. Again, the cables themselves looked like they were in good condition but the threaded portion of every cable end was bent, like perhaps it had been overtorqued at some point? I am going to contact Jayco and see if there is a possibility of getting a kit of replacement cables.
    DSC_1272.JPG

    We're still a little puzzled as to what caused the roof to fall the first time. Our best guess is that the smaller, locking gear on the ratcheting mechanism pulled away from the main gear and caused the roof to fall. We were able to raise the roof again with the ratcheting mechanism without any issue, however, and didn't find any loose parts. I'm a little stumped.
     
  6. SteveP

    SteveP Well-Known Member

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    May just be the angle of the pic but it looks like the top of the winch frame is a little wider than the bottom and the top shaft may be missing a retainer on the end opposite the small gears. Maybe the gears did separate under stress.
     
  7. MNTCamper

    MNTCamper Active Member

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    Just a couple of things - I have never seen the 4 corner cables attached to the plate in the manner yours are. Normally the cables terminate in a reinforced loop when then goes through an eye bolt which runs through the plate. If the cable are over stressed, then the eye bolt will open up instead of the cables themselves failing. It looks like your main cable has simply come off of the main winch - usually this can only happen if the winch is lowered much too far. For long term use, when the winch is lowered and the roof latched, the winch should be raised ~ 3 clicks to slightly tension the cable system with the roof down so nothing moves around. There are multiple threads on here in regards to fixing the Jayco lift system and manuals. My Jayco is an '01 and I do minor maintenance on the lift system annually. The system is in great shape and works flawlessly. The positive for it being inside is that it does not see the elements at all, but it is harder to get to.
     

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