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 > Your search for posts made by 'JBarca' found 103 matches.

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  Subject Author Date Posted Forum
RV style AC attic duct work - what is it called, brand etc

I restore older campers and there are times the AC ducts in the attic gets damaged beyond using thick HVAC tape to seal the air leak, the whole duct needs to be replaced. I am trying to track down who makes them, or at least what they are called in the RV industry in attempts to buy some. Here are pics of what I am talking about. This size has to fit through the rafters. The ceiling registers are the older standard round turn type to adjust air flow. I know where to buy them. This is the attic with the roof off showing the AC ducting I'm trying to locate. The cieling air box on a older Dometic AC unit https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52407781944_29b88df83b_b.jpg width=640 Curved ducts come out of the air box and head down the camper through the rafters https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/49816088267_4cf2aea312_o.jpg width=640 https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/49816088252_2020fed880_o.jpg width=640 A close up of the space the duct fits through the rafter. You can see the white round ceiling register poking out of the ceiling board into the duct https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52407490001_284ab9c7a0_b.jpg width=640 Thanks for any leads on this. John
JBarca 10/05/22 09:54pm Tech Issues
RE: Custom RV Vent Fan Project

Nice job SJ! H'mm, this may do the trick for us too when we boondock. We only need a little air moving to make a difference over the bed where there is a standard 14 x 14 vent. I do not like strong wind blowing over me and then there is the noise issue. I have a 3 speed Maxx Fan in the next room on a T stat that we do use while boondocking, but with the power draw, I do not want to run it all night, your upgrade may be just the fix we are after. Thanks for sharing. John
JBarca 10/01/22 11:36am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Dometic RM2652 climate control switch

Not sure if you have resolved this or not, I just saw this post. I have these pics of the climate control switch on a RM2652 installed in camper built in Sept 2003. This fridge came out as part of a camper restoring effort to repair water damage. The 2 white wires on the climate control switch are on a jumper pin setup. Meaning the spades terminals on the switch are common to each other through a metal tab of the spades. Doug is correct, if one of these white wires is unhooked, what ever is on the other end is not getting the DC ground (-12 VDC). Not sure how your wire is so short you cannot splice it, or crimp on a new terminal. This particular unit had a good deal of excess wire if you pull a little on the wire. A standard crimp style butt splice for the wire if it is broke out in the open, or a new terminal on the end of the wire will correct the issue. And yes, the controls on this fridge are all 12 VDC. There is a 120 VAC electric element, but that wire run is down by the control board in the back of the fridge and goes to the burner stack area. The 12 VDC control boards turns that 120 VAC electric element on and off. Hope this helps John https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52394636707_34c8e97b95_b.jpg width=640 https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52395576310_c4848b7ce3_b.jpg width=640 Close up of the 2 ground wires. If you look close the switch has a 2 spade jumper terminal on it. https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52395434494_2dc78b14fd_b.jpg width=640
JBarca 09/30/22 11:53am Tech Issues
RE: CC Magna Build (solar, res fridge, induction cooktop, etc)

Wow, OK we can see you are "handy"! :C Yes, we like seeing these kinds of things. And WOW, that Country Coach has beautiful wood work in it. You are right about the quality. It just jumps out over the average RV even being 22 years old. Thanks for sharing, John PS. OK I found the story of Country Coach Wow, just wow. https://countrycoach.com/about/
JBarca 09/29/22 09:15pm Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Rear Picture Window Glass Removal

Hi All, Has anyone here removed an intact picture window glass from the aluminum frame with it still in the trailer? I want to install a window pellet stove. Hi bguy, If you are looking for access to inside the camper, and on some campers, the fridge won't fit through the door, so a window etc. has to be removed. This sounds close to what you want to do. The fact of using a pellet stove in a camper is a whole other topic. If you are doing your picture window removal to get something in or out of the camper, we and you, really need to know the type of RV window you have. Many RV windows have the glass sealed with special bonding adhesive to the aluminum frame by the window manufacture. This creates a water tight seal of the glass itself to the aluminum frame. Then the window manufacture ships a window "unit" (glass and frame) to the RV manufacture who mounts the frame of the window unit into a rough opening in the camper. And the RV manufacture seals the window unit to the side of the camper. In this case, it would be more prudent to remove the window unit from the side of the camper to expose the rough opening and leave the glass bonded to the window frame. I have removed and installed, "lots" of windows into the rough openings of a camper complete with pics etc. on how to do this. But we need to know which type of window you have to give the right procedure. Please post pics of the entire outside and inside of the window which include the outside of the camper and the inside of the camper walls. If by chance you have a window brand name and or model number, that is real good, but pics help show what you have. Hope this helps. John
JBarca 09/27/22 05:37pm Tech Issues
RE: WFCO WF-8955 amps in absorption mode

It’s always 13.6-13.8 no matter the state of charge of the batteries. What I’d like to know is how many amps is it putting out in this mode. Something else to add, if you "never" see the voltage drop down into the 13.25 volt range, (float mode) sooner or later being at 13.6V (standard charge) "all" the time is a sign you are going to boil out the battery in short order. Check the electrolyte level often to not go below the plates. If you are camping on shore power for 4 to 5 days and the voltage never drops to 13.25 V, there is a problem. Maybe the WFCO, maybe a bad cell in the battery. This is a separate issue from not going into boost mode. WFCO's as they age are real good battery killers and other devices in the camper. They seem to die 3 ways. Way high voltage, real low voltage or just plain die and do not work. The first two ways you may not notice until other damage is done. At least when they die totally, they do not kill something else in the process.
JBarca 09/26/22 07:51pm Tech Issues
RE: Time for new tires already?

I've never gotten good mileage out of oem tires. I would suggest it's not the name of the company but rather the grade of tires on the truck. I agree with the same statement. My buddy with his new 3500 HD had the same issue on Michelin OEM tires. 30K miles and they are gone when carrying close to full weight. What I have heard is, and it was confirmed by a Firestone rep trying to find new tires for a friend on a 2500 HD. The auto makers go to the tire companies and want their standard tires tweaked to the auto maker OEM tire requirements. Things like load capacity, nice ride, good brand, traction and then there is mileage. In order to get better ride to sell a new truck, they tweak the tire compounds to get better ride and this is offset by lower mileage wear when at the load rating. Something has to give, and mileage looses on an OEM tires. If you get the same tire in the aftermarket not OEM tweaked, then it can get to the mileage warranty the tire manufacture states at full load, but the tire may ride rougher. I'm in the same boat on my F350, this spring I need new tires due to age. This will be my 4th set of tires on this truck. Something in the tire industry changed about 6 years ago where the truck is real squirmy when the tires are brand new. Many state this wears off in 500 miles, but in may case it took 3,500 miles then the truck handled the way it use to. There is no rating for tire squirm or side wall flex I know of. Choosing a good brand thinking it will work on your truck is a shot in the dark some times when towing. Hope this helps John
JBarca 09/26/22 10:49am Tow Vehicles
RE: WFCO WF-8955 amps in absorption mode

Here is what I have run into with the WFCO on this non going into boost issue. Part of the problem is wiring within the camper. A long run on no. 6 awg across a 25 to 18 ft run between the battery and the converter limits the converter from going into boost and it also limits the amps from the way the converter senses the battery. In my case, the factory installed a 30 amp self resetting breaker in that same main feed line to protect the battery, wire etc. They know the converter will never be passing anywhere near the 30 amp breaker limit back to the battery in charge mode. The WFCO's in this setup has real issues going into boost. My guess is, you may only be getting 15 to 20 amps from the converter to the battery regardless being in boost at 14.4 or standard charge at 13.6 volts. That is what I measured on mine while boondocking. I did change out my converter from a prior 2 stage American Enterprises to a Progressive Dynamics and it has no issues going into boost, I can even use the wizard and force the modes. BUT, that same small wire that long is still limiting the charge amps even in boost mode. In order to get the amps up, one needs to move a good power converter real close to the battery and used really large short cables. Then the converter can sense the battery resistance better and pump up the amps also. It seems that maybe, the standard RV setup with a 55 amp or 60 amp power converter is setup to allow, approx. 20 amps to charge the battery while the rest of the 35 to 40 amps is running the camper. That smaller wire setup is making that happen on a long camper. Hope this helps John
JBarca 09/26/22 10:29am Tech Issues
RE: DIY Awning protection cap / cover

Hi I’m on the road all year long so I’m pretty worried about my awning fabric, actually the top part that is always exposed to the sun when it’s rolled up. What do you think of my idea? The best I found is this: https://www.homedepot.com/p/Sunlite-24-in-x-96-in-Polycarbonate-Clear-Multiwall-Roof-Panel-132506/202091947 In France, there would be 2 materials I could use but I can’t find them here. Thanks in advance for your help. Hi, Years ago I did the PVC pipe cover, it really helped but as you said, it needs to come off when traveling. I looked at your clear polycarbonate sheet you linked. Here are my thoughts on this, the clear polycarbonate will still let the UV sun rays through. While it may help with keeping some water off, I have an instinctive feeling it will not stop the UV degradation to the main awing. The reason I say this, I found over the years that by putting up a custom made cushion in the shower skylight, that cover has drastically saved the yellowing of the shower surround as opposed to the same brand and style camper let open to the sun. The translucent polycarbonate skylight still lets too much UV through where the solid cushion we put up during the day keeps it out. The poster with the 4" wide white Gorilla tape is a good option to help the UV breakdown. The tape may only last outside a few years, but it would help block the UV rays. I know the Ebond, and it will hands down work and last, but the ozz'ing of the gray sealant may become a problem. A thin layer of Dicor non sag lap sealant smeared on the exposed Ebond edge can help with the ozz'ing I just do not know how long it will last rolling and rolling. I use the Dicor non sag on roof Ebond and it is 13 years plus and still going strong, but that area does not roll up. the Dicor may crack over time. Let us know how you make out. Hope this helps John PS, they do sell aluminum roll up covers for the awning. They cost $$$, but it does help keep the sun off the awing when rolled up, some water may still wick in the ends, but it far better then the standard awning .
JBarca 09/22/22 08:11am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Roof reseal

BarneyS & Goostoff, Thank you both for the good words. Very much appreciated. And Goostoff, you are very welcome. Wow, I'm humbled by your response. If you need any help or pointers on roof repair or replacement of a bad area, just ask. And the coatings, I have a "lot" on the Henry's and the Crazy Seal to share if wanted if you decide to go that way. These coatings once applied, correctly, can last the life of the camper for your use and they deal with the failing caulk issues. They also $$$ more. But, before going this route, ask and understand all that is needed to make it come out that way. I have seen the Dicor 2 part acrylic coating and it is OK, especially if you go over new good sound caulking. The coating deals with restoring the wearing shed layer of the EPDM. However, the joints where the caulk is, is where some of the thinner coatings can have issues. Long term flexing in the caulk areas can raise havoc on some coatings, by your going new caulk really helps under the this type of coating. Also make sure you do not have any ponding water areas on the roof as they can break down acrylic coatings over time. The cost is a lot less, but the life of the product is not as long. This all comes down to, how long do you want the roof to last, can you get up there and deal with it on the shorter life, and the cost benefit. Anything to do with a camper roof has + & -'s. Even by going with a new roof replacement done the same way the OEM's did them, have the caulking joints as the failure mode early in the life cycle, along with high annual maintenance. And even then, the thin membrane only lasts so long before it needs to be coated or replaced. The coatings systems help, some better then others. The RV industry did not make campers to last as long as some of us like to use them. I have lots of pictures etc. and details to share for a fellow camper bud to help, if needed. Hope you roof project comes out well. John
JBarca 09/22/22 07:45am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: Roof reseal

My trailer is getting some age on it and has never had any roof maintenance done so I think it is time to get it done. I had a vent start leaking on our last camping trip so I figured why not just do everything. First question it what is the best way to remove all the old calk around all the vents and stuff. second...about how many tubes of goop will I need. Its a 35 foot 5th wheel with single AC unit, 3 powered vents, sky light, and 3 plumbing vents. I hate to be short half way through the job but also hate to have a bunch of extra sitting around. I also have the rubber roof paint. Should it be painted before calk or after. Thanks for any help you can give a guy. Hi, On your EPDM roof, To get the old caulk scraped up, use a heat gun and all dulled up edges stiff blade metal scraper. I use a 1" wide blade, anything much wider and you do not have enough strength to push it. All dulled up, means every edge on that scraper blade is slightly rounded, no sharp edges. Feel it with your hand before using. The heat gun, do not stay in one place, keep it moving to only warm the caulk and not burn the rubber, and the old caulk will scrape up easier. Pending how hot outside it is, it may not take very much heat. At 50F outside, it will take more heat. You will get the feel of it quick how much heat you need. Have the scraper more closer to parallel to the roof as opposed to a 45 degree or higher up angle so you do not dig into the roof. If you want to get back to bare roof and bare moldings, (I recommend doing this) there is a chemical clean step to follow after scraping. Ask for what that is. A roof that size will take 9 to 10 tubes of Dicor self leveling roof sealant caulk. I cannot stress enough to make sure the roof rubber is clean before putting your new caulk down. The caulk will not bond long term to dirt or mold. Clean before you start scraping the old up. If your roof on a 2005 camper never had any maintenance done to it, unless it was stored under cover all those years, odds are favorable there is some kind of a leak that needs a repair. Check close, and address each area when you are removing the old caulk. Before coating or new caulking, look at all your roof plastic, how aged and deteriorated are they? Sky lights, tank vents, fridge vents etc. Consider replacing aged old roof plastic attached to the roof before re-caulking or coating. Make sure when you caulk, you have good contact to the aluminum moldings, and onto the EPDM. The caulk will shrink as it cures a little and a light coat at the molding, can shrink away from the molding in a year or more and leave an exposed slit water can get in. And yes, you want to coat over the new caulking after it gases off. It will help keep the sun UV from breaking down the new caulking. When using coatings or even Eternabond, heads up. Dicor gases off as it cures and the gas has to escape or it will bubble up under what ever you coat put over it. Waiting 3 to 4 weeks for total gas off will make sure this issue does not happen. Now as to which coating to use? There are a lot of coatings out there and the prices are all over between them. The question comes down to, how long are you going to keep the camper, are there places where ponding water sits after a rain storm, do you have any Eternabond on any of the seams, do you want this coating to last 10 plus years (or the life of the camper) without recoating in between? If there is any water damage under the EPDM, repair it before coating the roof. I myself restore old campers and after dealing with the pain of a water damage restore, you do not want to have another roof leak so I go after long life roof coatings. I'm into the high solids silicone coatings that have lots longer warranties on the life of the product, can handle ponding water and do not require frequent re-coating. But they cost more. (Henry 885/887 Trop-i-cool, Crazy Seal, Gaco brands for the DIY'er, RV roof Armor to have it hired out) Before I type a lot on this, it comes down to cost. These high solids silicone coatings cost the most, then a coating you have to re-apply every 3 to 5 years. Again this comes back to, how long are you keeping the camper and is it OK to save $$ and do more re-coats? Here is a tip I have learned on coatings and I now swear by. Learn how to do an adhesion test to your cleaned roof before any type of coating is used. This test is not hard to do and after the first one you have done, it is a 5 to 10 minute job on a cleaned roof to apply. And after the cure time, it takes less then 5 minutes to read the outcome of the test. Now you know you have a good or bad bond. You will have to get the exact method from your coating product manufacture and what is their spec to pass the cohesive failure by. This adhesion test is also nicknamed a pull test. You put a layer of a certain thickness on the roof, and then gently embed/place a mesh material of a certain size on top of the coating. Most of the mesh is under the coating, and a tab hangs out uncoated. Top coat with another coat of the material at a certain thickness. Then wait for the cure time the coating manufacture states. Using a fish scale, you pull on the exposed embedded mesh and read the pounds of force to pull the mesh off the roof. The goal is you get a cohesive failure where the mesh pulled apart between the top and bottom layer and the bottom layer is bonded to the roof. And the pull force to failure was equal to or greater then the manufactures ratings. If your coating manufacture has no such test or data as to what is a good or bad bond to the roof, then consider what your are applying may not last a long time and you are OK with that. That adhesion test is very standard in the building industry for coatings where lots of dollars are at stake if the coating fails. Educate yourself on all this and the warranties before doing a camper roof coating. And make sure the coating is RV rated, the application on a building standing still is different then an RV rolling down the road twisting and flexing. Also a tip, many coatings will not adhere long term to the top surface of Eternabond tape unless a prior treatment of the E bond is done. The TPO surface is so slick in it's natural state, the bond will not last long term. I'm a firm believer in E bond and it saved may camper long ago. Just understand how to use coatings over the Ebond the day you want to coat over them. Hope this helps John
JBarca 09/20/22 08:53am Do It Yourself Modifications and Upgrades (DIY)
RE: WFCO 55 amp converter operation

I have had issues with bad connections and bad batteries in my motorhome and have them all resolved except knowing how this converter should work. It charges a new set of batteries to about 13.6V with no load. When I put a load (2 fantastic fans and a 12V TV) on the batteries the voltage slowly drops to about 12.65V and seems to stay there. If I shut the converter off it drops even further so it is doing something. When the load is shut off it takes about 20 mins for the voltage to get to 13.4V. I think over a longer period it will get to 13.6V. I have a friend who has a progressive dynamics converter and he says when he puts a load on the batteries the voltage drops from 13.3V to 13.2V and never goes lower. Do I have a bad converter or does this type just act like a trickle charger? From my experience with the WFCO's If your battery voltage drops (as measured at the battery) to 12.65 VDC when the power converter is running, from what I have seen, your converter is bad. With the converter plugged in and connected to the battery, the WFCO should be in float mode (13.25 volts), standard charge (13.65 volts) or boost (14.4 volts) It will switch between those 3 modes pending how drawn down the battery is. Anything down into 12 VDC range, the converter is not working right unless maybe you are over the 55 amp power rating. Which in this case does not sound like you are. 12.7 VDC with the battery at rest (left idle for 8 hours etc) and no loads on the battery, is 100% state of charge for the battery. Your 12.65 volt is the battery at full charge for all practical purposes. The converter is not lifting the voltage up where it should be. Make sure you do not have some fuse etc between the battery and the converter blown etc, if the volts go back up from 12.65 to 13 plus with no load, then there are no blown fuses etc, just the converter is not working right. If you have a WFCO 8955 converter, Progressive Dynamics makes a drop in converter that will tie into the existing DC fuses etc of the WFCO https://www.progressivedyn.com/pd4600-converter/ If you go to Best Converter dot com, they sell the PD converter tweaked for that company to not need the metal case and it have the plastic clips to hold the converter in place. If you get the Wildkat PD 4655L it has the ability to jumper switch to a future lithium battery if you are on lead acid now. https://www.bestconverter.com/4600-series-Upgrade-Kits_c_133.html They also offer the Wildkat PD 4655 MBA which is for lead acid and not able to upgrade later. Call Best Converter and ask for Randy. He knows his stuff and I have always had positive outcomes dealing with his company. They are an authorized PD dealer. Some on Amazon are not and those off shore clones will not be warranted. Hope this helps John
JBarca 09/19/22 06:54pm Tech Issues
RE: Brakes grabbing

Yes John, if you read my post above, I did turn up the gain, due to braking being unusually poor. If you are familiar with the older Voyager, the gain had no real sequential marking. Mine was always set about 1 o'clock, worked great, but as braking diminished, probably set to 4-5 o'clock?? No real measure on this model. Thanks for clarifying. I missed that in your post, you did turn up the gain. This explains it, at least in your case. Now I can connect the dots on how this happens. Learn something new all the time!
JBarca 09/15/22 09:39am Travel Trailers
RE: Brakes grabbing

In MFL's explanation I can see the heavy braking. If he has chafing in of the insulation and the inside of the axle tube is rusty he has an intermittent high resistance short. So when he applies the brakes some current goes to the magnet and some current goes into the rusty axle tube causing weak brakes. Since the brakes are weak he cranks up the gain on the controller to compensate. Next road bump and the wire moves and is no longer shorted to the tub. Now when he touches the brakes he gets the full voltage at the brakes locking them up. Yes, I agree with your thinking would do that. Turning up the gain can do it. The open question now is, did MFL turn up the gain? If he never touched the gain, then there is still something else going on not yet understood.
JBarca 09/15/22 09:15am Travel Trailers
RE: Brakes grabbing

Hi Jerry, Thanks for your background explanation. It helps. I can see the weak braking, that adds up. I'm still trying to sort out on how the extreme braking is happening. H'mm, I have to think in this some more. Somehow the brake controller is reacting to the shorting of the hot wire. The wire chaffing issue, for sure a problem. For those wanting to keep an older camper to still be towed from camp to camp, yes, just abandon the wires in the axle tube and upgrade the wiring outside the tube. 10 years towing is what caused the wear in the pic I posted on the one I was restoring. The emergency breakaway switch, yes a forgotten safety feature. Again, restoring older campers, they where never changed since the day it left the factory. And they do not get on the annual maintenance list to pull and check them, and put silicone spray on the O ring. If one reads the instructions that comes with the switch, many brands recommend changing them every 3 to 5 years. They really do not have a lot of faith in them. I have found the switch most times corrodes inside and creates extreme heat the day it ever gets pulled, to the point the insulation can started melting. The O ring cracks over time, the pin gets jammed in, or water leaks in and kills the switch. That said, I have not seen one yet that corroded on. I know it is not impossible, maybe just not as common. Happy camping John
JBarca 09/15/22 06:42am Travel Trailers
RE: Brakes grabbing

Hey JR, this is a common issue, but normally takes at least a light touch of pedal, that can result with braking similar to pulling the pin. Very aggressive, tires chirp/maybe smoke. As Grit mentioned, turning the gain way down will help, but braking will be diminished. It starts mostly intermittent, due to the wiring moving/bouncing inside the tube. Quick fix..cut the wires going through tube, and run new cross wire outside the tube. Hi Guys, I might learn something new here, but please help explain how the brakes can grab hard when the hot wire in the axle tube shorts? Here is from my background to help the cause. The chaffing is real. What I cannot sort out is how the brakes grab real hard close to lockup as you are stating. My findings: Yes, as the trailer ages and the towing miles increase, the double wire lamp cord style cable inside the axle tube creates a wire insulation chaffing problem. First is, the insulation gets brittle over time. Circular cracks in the insulation happen, mostly where the wire flexes but it is not limited to just the flexing areas. Moisture can then get to the conductor given the right conditions. The middle area of the axle tube is prone to the wire bouncing and rubbing over time. The wear is not selective to which wire wears to expose the conductor. Here is one of the many I have found while restoring older campers. https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/51009378871_954ab6b826_b.jpg width=640 A close up showing the tarnished copper exposed https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/51009378856_7ef37eca61_b.jpg width=640 The hole area at the ends of the tube also can have exposed conductors also. This wear is different then the mid tube area. The brittle wire cracks where the wire rubs the tube hole edge, starts to wear/vibrate into the conductor. Now, when the exposed conductor touches the metal frame, it is sort of a 50/50 good luck or bad luck which conductor touches the tube. If the chassis ground wire wears through and touches the tube, this issue may not be found under normal operating as one side of the brake coils are tied to chassis ground. I have not seen this be a problem short of the wire wearing all the way through and creating an open ground on the brake coil. Or a weak ground and the magnet not getting full power. If the brake hot tire wears and touches the tube, when the brakes are applied here is where problems can start. And where I need someone to help explain how the voltage and current above normal braking to get high enough to create hard breaking on all wheels or even one of them. The average brake coil on a 10" x 2 1/4" all the way to a 12" x 2" or 12 1/4 x 3 3/8", drum ID x show width, brake has an magnet coil ohm reading around 3.2 ohms. Its not much but it can create 3 amp draw on a full 12 volt power circuit. There is a load there and not a dead short. When the chaffed wire touches the axle tube, that can be close to a dead short or a less pending how much corrosion resistance is on the tube. How does the truck brake controller send full voltage and current similar to a emergency break away switch activation with only a light tap of the brake pedal? What tricked the controller to know to do this? On a time based controller that only uses the brake pedal switch, it is a timed response for when full current is reached according to the gain setting. On a proportional controller, well this depends on the brand and type. The pendulum ones, need the truck angle change to create high power. The newer truck integrated ones which us the master cylinder pressure, that is something different too. What an I missing on how all 4 or 3 of the 4 go to full power when one is grounded out on the hot wire? My original thought was the controller senses the dead short and tries to protect itself, maybe shutting down the power to not have it burn out? What happens next I'm not sure. Help fill in the details on how the full power is created like you are stating. Thanks John
JBarca 09/14/22 06:56pm Travel Trailers
RE: Slide Out Struggles

Hi Josh, I just found your post. I have been into the Lippert rack and pinion slides, the Barker rack and pinion, the DeWald (Power Gear) rack and pinion before, and while my camper has the Lippert rack and pinion setup, the trough in the floor was made by my camper manufacture. I can state this though, the two end walls of the slide is where the big support of the slide is going in and out. The walls are rigid, including the long outside wall and they are structural. But the long slide floor itself (the part that is open to the main camper) normally does not have a vertical support to the ceiling in the middle area of the long open section. That center floor area is weak unless the slide is full out being supported by the camper main floor. To help better, what type of slide drive drive system does your camper have? By your description it sounds like a rack and pinion system, but there are several brands on the older campers. Lippert, Dewald, Power Gear, Barker etc. Is your slide setup a "flush floor" system or an "above floor" system? The flush floor setup is more flush between the main camper floor and the slide floor when the slide is full out. There is a rug flap that covers the gap between the two floors. This flush floor system has a cam type of plow so to speak to lift up the entire slide off the main camper floor as the slide comes in and goes out. This type of slide setup most often comes in going up hill on an angle to get the slide floor up off the carpet or floor vinyl in the camper. When the slide is in, the long tongue of the slide is several inches up off the floor. The above floor is at the name states. The slide floor is on top of the main camper floor, there can be a 1" or so bump (the actual slide floor) to walk from the main camper floor up into the slide when the slide is out. This slide moves more straight in and out. There is no cam action lifting the slide up off the floor. The plastic floor slides, LCI calls them slide slickers, helps the above floor system not drag the floor as much. On the flush floor system, often you can adjust the system to lift up off the carpet/floor and the slide slicker is not needed as much, but sometimes added as the system gets a lot older. Where I'm going with this, I do not have you exact camper, but I have worked on some of the older Keystones and other brands to repair older slide setups that have deteriorated over the year with sagging slide floors, sagging main frames, leaking slides, and just plain high drag in the system, but it helps to know what you have on how to help better. Do you have any pics of the slide drive system under the camper and area the slide floor to the main slide floor area where you added the rollers? And some inside the camper too. Hope this helps John
JBarca 09/11/22 10:08am Tech Issues
RE: Converter not charging batteries

Hi, What brand/make and model and size is the power converter? And how old is it? Do you have a voltmeter? When the converter appears to get to 75%, what was the charging voltage before the 75% and then after the 75%? Do the test at the battery terminals and ideally reported in at least one decimal point, 2 decimal points is better. Also, how long was the system sitting at 75% and not going any higher? A few hours or a day or more not gaining any higher state of charge. What are you using to measure state of charge? We are making the assumption your system worked before and now does not. Is that the case, or did you just buy the camper and this is what you have? By chance, was there any power draw going on inside the camper when the system stopped charging any higher? If yes, what was powered up? What group size twin battery's are they? Group, 24, 27 31 etc. And are they lead acid or other technology. We need some more background to help back into what might be the issue to give better answers. Hope this helps John
JBarca 09/09/22 06:49pm Tech Issues
RE: Driveway Incline Issue

@Jbarca. If you’re talking about the few years of weak hitch GMT800s, I understand that, however the answer is the same. There is virtually nothing he could do backing into a driveway at 1mph that would cause greater stress than what is experienced while driving. And if the hitch is that bad, I’d rather have it bend or snap in my driveway than at 70mph down the freeway. And if this is not what you’re speaking of, then I totally don’t understand what you’re cautioning against. Alot of explanation largely unrelated to getting a trailer in your driveway that has already survived a trip to (wherever) and home again. But I gotta ask, what the heck is the dial indicator on the hitch for? Grit, I can understand your point of view why you may not understand where I am coming from. Asking me to explain, is a more preferred request then the wording you have been using…. You have given your opinion, and I respect it, even if I do not agree with it. However, you have not explained your position, yet anyway. It seems you are stating your opinion without explanation. If I missed it, I apologize. I’ll try and make as this short as I can, there is a lot to this. After dealing with this flexing stress topic, on multiple trucks; my own, my family and my friends, I was speaking up to allenECUUNC for him not to go over the ratings of the hitch system as declared by GM in weight carrying mode given with what little we know about his truck condition. If you want to read up on where all this started for me, there is 35-page post from 2005 here on RV net where a lot of the measurements and findings of stress issues associated with the GM receiver, and later, where with the frame stress/deflection after the GM receiver was changed to an aftermarket one. Sadly, after that post was made, the forum software was changed and if any post used a “bracket” in the text, mine did, it would scramble the entire reply, pictures, and all. The photo bucket picture mess of a few years ago also scrambled a lot of the other posters problems. This link will drop you in the middle when I made the frame corrections. Word and pics are semi scrambled. http://www.coastresorts.com/cforum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/16065296/gotomsg/16329138.cfm#16329138 I still have all the photos and a good memory of how my 2003 2500 Suburban had both receiver and frame flex. And how I addressed both once I understood the whole issue. Since that time, I have continued to run into the same GM receiver issues with other friends, the learning never stops. Here are the cliff notes on some of the issues. The first issue dealt with the original GMT-800 OEM receiver in WD mode. Some, not all, of those receivers had issues in use, well under the rating of the hitch. (The pin box as I call it, is the 2” square tube the hitch shank goes in and the 5/8 pin goes through). While I had good friends with no issues on similar camper weights, my experience and others was not the same. The amount of pin box wind up (excess rotation) trying to get WD to work, was poor. The pin box attachment flexed, rather than shifted weight to the front of the truck. Some trucks I was involved with, the receiver bent up and permanently stayed up. Others, just weakened to the point WD settings would not hold and over time as the pin box/torque tube would bend and reset it’s unloaded position. Thus the WD settings where lost. After a few resets, the receivers were replaced. Corrosion, the design of the receiver housed under the bumper left itself open for road salt slop to land right on top of the welded section where the pin box attached to the torque tube. And if allenECUUNC 2003 truck (19 years old) was exposed to salt corrosion, on the original GM receiver or an aftermarket one, the top of the receiver needs to be checked. The area that corrodes is under flexure stress constantly towing down the road. The heat affected zone of all the welds could be buried under corrosion. Having dealt with enough corrosion-initiated failures at work, corrosion pits make a perfect crack initiation location. Once the crack starts, all it takes is time and flexure cycles under normal loading and the crack will run until there is nothing left to crack. With higher than normal loading or longer flexing, that accelerates the time to start the crack to run. Pin box rotation, when the receiver is in weight carrying mode, the pin box will flex/rotate further then in WD mode. The receiver when it is brand new, is supposed to be able to handle the dead weight in weight carrying mode which will create a certain degree of pin box flexure that it can withstand. Going above the rating, with a tongue weight heavier then the rating, the pin box will rotate more than normal towing, more rotation is more stress. Not sure how you are disagreeing with this, please explain. If the receiver is corroded, that added rotation/added stress can be the start of a corrosion-initiated crack. Or even a crack on non-corroded metal. A weld notch or defect can create the same crack initiation point if stressed enough. Frame flexure, in my case, my Suburban receiver flexed enough while trying to get WD mode to work, the WD settings did not react. The pin box kept rotating; just very little weight was moving. I changed the GM receiver to an aftermarket receiver. The Putnam receiver I picked had a higher rating and there was less pin box rotation because of it. During more testing, I now find the frame is flexing as the receiver is no longer the weaker link. This is where the dial indicator comes in. It is measuring the frame deflection under static conditions. This GMT-800 frame was made from thinner, yet a higher yield rating alloy then the prior vintage. I’m assuming they were going after weight savings while retaining overall frame strength. The rear of the frame has a very thin lower flange where the receiver bolts to. They had to employ the bumper hitch to help shift the forces from WD into the main frame. There are side brackets where the bumper hitch bolts to the main frame that helped get the WD forces into the main frame. After I found the frame flexing, and affecting WD, I created a method to utilize the top flange of the frame to help hold some of the load. I did this modification and accepted the responsibly of doing it. The frame flexing was greatly reduced. Six years ago, my son gets a 2001, 2500 Avalanche (8.1L with the 3.73 rear end) to tow his 8,600# camper. Same frame as my Suburban. This truck lived in the rust belt of Ohio, even though it had a low 46K miles on a truck this old, frame rust was evident. For sure, he changed out the GM receiver which had heavy corrosion in the top of the receiver. Two years later he sees the bumper rising a full inch up and touches the tailgate when he hooks up the camper. His frame was flexing from a 1,000# TW camper using WD. We did the same frame reinforcement as I had and changed to a different receiver with a third extra-long reach contact mount to the frame. Now, for the last 4 years, WD works like it should and he has a great TV. So yes, I cannot see any good coming from telling someone intentionally to use any receiver in weight carrying mode attached to that style frame over what GM rated the weight carrying limit. We have no idea if the frame is where the receiver dead weight rating came from, or the GM receiver, I suspect it was both. Now add in a 19 year truck allenECUUNC has, which is still a good truck, but how can you or I, or even him, know if a prior owner did not abuse the frame of the truck not even knowing it? And then there is the corrosion issue if his has it. I agree, one or a few more times going up and down is driveway may not cause a total failure, but keep repeating it after the start and end of every campout, how many abuse times in the weight carrying mode will start a crack that later shows up under normal towing? And the backing up hill part. You state 1 mph, have you ever tried in that size GM in 2 wheel drive to go 1 mph, starting out pushing a trailer uphill? Granted you not going fast, but not a nice slow even start of movement either all the time. You have to rev the engine up enough to get the torque converter to engage, there can be a jolt getting the trailer to move up hill. That jolt goes right into the hitch connection where the hitch shank is pointing down hill in weight carrying mode no less. The pin box is going to flex down and potentially more rotation then the ratings and safety factors of the receiver allow. And not every time is perfect, an accidental goosed it too much on the gas pedal, and the receiver in weight carrying mode just got stressed more again trying to get going. This is not a good situation to be in. Avoid it. Find a better way with the WD bars on. I’m providing reasons on why not to over run the rating of the system in weight carrying mode; can you help explain how it is OK to do so? I hope this explains it some where I'm coming from on this.
JBarca 09/07/22 07:25pm Towing
RE: First place to look re. where water got in to our TT

Hi trailernovice, Your welcome and glad the info helped. There are high odds, the windows are the leak source due to the puddling inside the living space, but there are many other ways too. If you find the windows are not the issue, then come back to us. There are ways to back into where other leaks can get into the living space. Ideally you can test what you have now, before making drain cleaning/adjusting to create a baseline. Then later test again after the cleaning to see if you actually helped the problem. This adds support to you found the issue. If there is no change in drain flow before and after, then one needs to dig deeper until it all adds up. Let us know how you make out. John
JBarca 09/06/22 10:13pm Travel Trailers
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