Help with access to windscreen wiper arm (1 Viewer)

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Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Hi,
I’m looking for help with the following, please.

The (UK) drivers side wiper arm has become loose on my 2017 Rapido 803F Motorhome. (This is an A Class unit which has 3 wiper arms in total. Sod’s law dictates that the middle and nearside wiper arm couplings are fully accessible.)

The issue I have is in accessing the offside (UK) wiper arm where it attaches to it’s drive shaft. The access is blocked by a small panel which is part of the body trim as shown in the attached images. The dark coloured panel involved looks like it is designed to be removable. It is held at one end with a screw. This is the only visible attachment. I have undid the screw but the panel still seems to be solidly fixed in place with no apparent willingness to move in any direction. (I don’t want to use too much force for fear of breaking it.) Anyone have any idea as to how to remove this panel?

All helpful answers greatly appreciated. Many thanks in advance.

By the way, I confess that my poor Motorhome desperately needs cleaned. It’s currently in storage and there is a ‘No cleaning on site’ rule. However, because of this, along with another couple of minor issues, I can’t take the vehicle out on the road at the moment … or, at least, that’s my excuse. 😏
 

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Sep 18, 2015
699
703
Selby, North Yorkshire
Funster No
38,564
MH
Rapido 8066DF
Hi, The panel has only one screw and the panel is stuck on with a type of mastic i had the side panel replaced on my rapido the fitters force them off and always replace with new parts, had the same with new screen new panels come with the screen best left alone.
 
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OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Hi,

Many thanks for your response. It’s not quite what I wanted to hear, to be honest, but at least I now know what the situation is.
Unfortunately, the drive shaft for the wiper arm is loose where it comes through the bulkhead and it needs to be tightened. However, from what you say this looks to be very much a job for a Rapido dealer, and I’ll do as you suggest and not attempt a self repair.

Thanks, again, for the heads up on this. It’s greatly appreciated.
 
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Lenny HB

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 18, 2007
54,387
154,309
On the coast in West Sussex
Funster No
658
MH
Hymer B678 DL
Exp
Since 2008 & many years tugging
As you will probably have to fit a new panel why not use a hole saw to cut a hole inline with the wiper spline big enough to get a socket it. It. Will need to be big enough to allow the cover at the end of the arm to flip up. Then afterwards fit a blanking grommet.
 
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OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Thanks, Lenny. Great idea. I’ll look into that option. I’ll need to make a test template to try on one of the accessible wiper arms to see if the wiper arm puller will be able to operate through such a hole. If so, that’ll work a treat.
Thanks again. Much appreciated.

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Upvote 0
OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Forgot to add that if this option isn’t feasible, then I’ve been thinking that I might just cut a chunk out of the plastic trim for access and devise a way of fixing it back in place afterwards. The hole solution is certainly the way to go, though, if it gonna work. 👍
 
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Oct 24, 2020
617
2,521
Funster No
77,187
MH
VW
Exp
Since 2017
This outfit do removable plugs from tiny to up to Bloomin’ huge size.

This 38 mm wide plug looks like it might just do the job, costs pennies whilst looking professional. Just Dremel out the hole size you need.

Link


8F3263F2-3437-4CB7-B144-5AC9EC4F3453.png
 
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Sep 9, 2019
900
1,964
Runcorn
Funster No
63,956
MH
Autotrail Apache 632
Exp
Since Sept 2019
Can you cut a flap in it, like a loft hatch, with a multi tool? Then use a thin piece of plastic to bridge the gap and keep it shut with a couple of self-tappers painted black? Alternatively you can get large plastic grommets, that electricians use for metal consumer units, to blank the above mentioned poster’s drilled hole and socket set fix? Troy searching “blind grommet” on the internet.

Cheers!

Russ
 
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OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Thanks for all the replies, folks. All ideas are welcome. At the moment I’m very much minded to go down the route that Lenny suggested as my preferred option.

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Feb 13, 2013
1,005
1,099
Edinburgh
Funster No
24,680
MH
Rapido 881F
Exp
Since 2015
So we have an 881F Rapido A class and had the same problem you have. As said by other Funsters the 'end' is stuck down. You need to cut the epoxy and it will pop off. I use a piece of black gaffer tape to keep it in place. I keep meaning to get a self tapper and scre it down!
 
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Nov 13, 2011
1,504
3,650
Lincolnshire
Funster No
18,889
MH
PVC
Exp
30 years
Before you start drilling large round holes. From what you say it is the spindle housing that is loose, not the arm to spindle fixing, am I right?
If so, how is the spindle housing secured to the vehicle, normally either a large clamp nut or a couple of nuts/bolts.
If it is the one large nut holding the housing then, yes, a single large hole should give you enough space to remove the arm and re-tighten the clamping nut. However, if the housing is secured by nuts and bolts, you are going to need more space, in other words a much bigger hole, to enable you get access to at least two nuts, spaced possibly 50-60mm apart.
Can you actually see the 'loose' parts, if so any chance of some good close up pics?

Geoff
 
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Nov 19, 2021
899
2,045
Nr Wigan, UK
Funster No
85,517
MH
Rapido A Class
Exp
2002
Have a very similar problem. The wiper in question on our Rapido A class has dropped slightly and is so annoying.
I couldn’t decide if there is a 2nd screw underneath in the engine compartment which is very difficult to get at.

Will watch this with interest.
 
Upvote 0
OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Before you start drilling large round holes. From what you say it is the spindle housing that is loose, not the arm to spindle fixing, am I right?
If so, how is the spindle housing secured to the vehicle, normally either a large clamp nut or a couple of nuts/bolts.
If it is the one large nut holding the housing then, yes, a single large hole should give you enough space to remove the arm and re-tighten the clamping nut. However, if the housing is secured by nuts and bolts, you are going to need more space, in other words a much bigger hole, to enable you get access to at least two nuts, spaced possibly 50-60mm apart.
Can you actually see the 'loose' parts, if so any chance of some good close up pics?

Geoff
Hi Geoff,

Thanks for your response.

You have this correct. It is the spindle housing that is loose on this one. (The other two spindles are solidly in place.) There are no ’through bulkhead’ bolts that I can see around any of the wiper spindle shafts, so I‘m assuming (and hoping) that they are attached via a clamp nut on the outside. (If not, then I’ll be snookered for a self fix, I think.)
However, you raise a very valid point here. I’ll hopefully have more of a clue how the spindles are mounted when I ‘test remove’ one of the other wiper arms. I intend to make up a mock up template with a hole in it to see if the removal of the wiper arm plastic cap, and the operation of the wiper arm pulling tool will be feasible through such a hole which is spaced appropriately from the bulkhead.

Thanks again for you input. It’s much appreciated. 👍
 
Upvote 0
OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
So we have an 881F Rapido A class and had the same problem you have. As said by other Funsters the 'end' is stuck down. You need to cut the epoxy and it will pop off. I use a piece of black gaffer tape to keep it in place. I keep meaning to get a self tapper and scre it down!
Hi clanjones,

Thanks for your response.

From what Bill said in post #2, I am kinda put off trying to force the whole panel off for fear of breaking it. Was it very difficult to get off? What did you use to cut the epoxy?

If it could be easily secured back on, and would be easily removed for future access, then it would be an option worth considering. Another option I was. thinking about was just to cut a piece from the end of the panel to allow access, and then figuring some way to reattach it so that it would be removable in future.

Could you advise if the wiper spindle is attached by a clamp nut, please?

Thanks again for your help. Much appreciated. 👍

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pappajohn

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 26, 2007
43,498
50,888
Dark side of the moon
Funster No
172
Exp
Since 2005
Looking at the pics I'd say there isn't enough clearance between the trim and arm to get the arm off the spindle no matter how big a hole you drill.
If I'm correct, which I'm sure I am, then my thoughts are cut vertically all the way through the trim just past the spindle with a Dremel type tool and remove the cut off part.
 
Upvote 0
OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Looking at the pics I'd say there isn't enough clearance between the trim and arm to get the arm off the spindle no matter how big a hole you drill.
If I'm correct, which I'm sure I am, then my thoughts are cut vertically all the way through the trim just past the spindle with a Dremel type tool and remove the cut off part.
Thanks, pappajohn,

That’s another very valid point which I’ll need to check on before I make any final decisions about which option to choose.

If indeed you are correct, then the option you suggest very much ties in with my thoughts as regards a 2nd choice option.

Thanks again for a very helpful response. Much appreciated. 👍
 
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Feb 13, 2013
1,005
1,099
Edinburgh
Funster No
24,680
MH
Rapido 881F
Exp
Since 2015
Hi Freo I didn't do it but I have a close relationship with the dealer and I think a sharp blade or possibly cheese wire if you can find a way to use it. It is just epoxy that is used to hold it in place.
 
Upvote 0
OP
OP
F
Jan 9, 2014
154
208
Scotland
Funster No
29,628
MH
Rapido 803F
Exp
Since 2006
Hi folks,

Just a wee update on this. I was across at the Motorhome today (it’s kept in storage) and had a bit of a size up of the wiper arm. As predicted by pappajohn, there’s simply not enough clearance between the body trim and the bulkhead to remove the wiper arm from it’s spindle. Consequently, the hole option can’t be used - which is a pity since I felt that it would have been the most elegant solution. So then, on to plan B - which is to cut the end off the trim and detach that part from the bulkhead; hopefully without breaking it.

To help in assessing the measurements for the hole option, I removed the middle wiper arm from it’s spindle. The good news is that the spindle mounting is, indeed, attached to the bulkhead by a clamp nut. Visually, this looks to be an identical arrangement for all 3 wiper spindles, which means that it seems that the clamp nut has simply come loose on the offside wiper spindle mounting. Anyone know if there’s any torque restriction I need to be aware of on how tight the clamp nut should be, or can I simply tighten it up until it feels solid and secure?
 
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