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Open Roads Forum  >  Tech Issues

 > emergency start has been hardwired?

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maillemaker

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Posted: 09/23/19 07:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I believe your RV was made by Coachman. You should try contacting them with your VIN number and see if they can provide you with the electrical schematic for your rig.

On my 1990 Winnebago Warrior, the system is set up with 2 solenoids. On the dash there is a 3-way rocker switch. This switch is momentary to the right, and will stay in the middle or to the left.

When the rocker is held to the right with your finger, this temporarily gangs the engine battery to the house battery (now batteries, since I have expanded my house bank). This is an emergency start mechanism that allows you to crank the engine using the house battery. When you release the rocker it returns to center, and the house battery is disengaged from the circuit.

When the switch is in the middle, the house system is isolated from the engine system.

When you flip the rocker to the left, the engine will charge the house batteries. But I suspect the flow of electricity is one-way-only in this mode, so that the house batteries can be charged but not discharged.

I have to be careful with my setup because if you run the generator at the same time the batteries are ganged together and the engine is running it will damage the voltage regulators in the vehicle and/or in the generator. This is noted in the owner's manual so this was designed this way (which is nuts, in my opinion). I have gotten burned by this already in our 10 years of owning the rig.

I don't really understand electrically how my system actually works but there are a couple of relays at the front driver side of my engine bay that makes all the magic work. There is also a large fuse block there.

You will probably need a manufacturer's wiring diagram to make it work right again.


1990 Winnebago Warrior. "She may not look like much but she's got it where it counts!"



MEXICOWANDERER

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Posted: 09/23/19 05:53pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

NYET on damaging the alternator voltage regulator by doing any/all of the above. Too many mouseketeer mechanics, too many years of switching large wheeled chargers to BOOST then laying into the start crank setting of the charger cranking for ten minutes at a time with explosions coming out of both ends of the engine.

maillemaker

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Posted: 09/24/19 08:38am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Quote:

NYET on damaging the alternator voltage regulator by doing any/all of the above.


What does this mean?

Are you trying to say that running the generator with the switch set to gang the house and engine batteries won't damage the voltage regulators?

JaxDad

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Posted: 09/25/19 06:48am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Given that the OP’s chassis is a 1990 E350 it’s almost guaranteed to be a simple 4 post constant duty solenoid. AKA Ford starter solenoid.

Usually mounted on the drivers side behind the battery it has 1 heavy wire to the house battery, 1 heavy wire to the chassis battery, 1 small wire to an ‘ignition run’ wire and the last wire to the emergency start button. Nothing complicated or mysterious at all.

Alan_Hepburn

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Posted: 09/25/19 01:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

JaxDad wrote:

Given that the OP’s chassis is a 1990 E350 it’s almost guaranteed to be a simple 4 post constant duty solenoid. AKA Ford starter solenoid.


Last time I checked a starter solenoid was NOT a constant duty solenoid...has it changed?


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Alan & Sandy Hepburn driving a 2007 Fleetwood Bounder 35E on a Workhorse chassis - Proud to be a Blue Star Family!
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MEXICOWANDERER

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Posted: 09/25/19 02:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Will never damage alternator voltage regulator. What screws up most regulators is a booster cable car to car jump start especially if the disabled vehicle has a weak starter motor (high amp).

Charging vehicle sees a huge load then sudden stop

"Load Dump" City
Look it up with Google.

In my battery bank I have a Belden 500 amp charger, a P&S 100 amp charger, a Trace 60 amp charger and a Ford 6-G 145 amp alternator mounted on the Kubota.

When the gen is stopped and the 5-minute timer starts to cool down the turbo it drops the alternator off-line. Then the chargers drop off line one by one via the DPDT /essex relays. The NC contacts feed the Trace inverter with shore power. Restoration of shore power allows for a five minute delay then another 5 minute cool down. That's when the 3,000 CFM rotary fan over-rides the 110F autostart

JaxDad

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Posted: 09/25/19 03:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Alan_Hepburn wrote:

JaxDad wrote:

Given that the OP’s chassis is a 1990 E350 it’s almost guaranteed to be a simple 4 post constant duty solenoid. AKA Ford starter solenoid.


Last time I checked a starter solenoid was NOT a constant duty solenoid...has it changed?


Yes it changed, but not they way you think.

The ‘old style’ solenoids were robust enough to withstand constant duty, then they started ‘cheaping out’ (I guess the $0.25 / unit savings made a difference) on construction of them and they would burn up under constant duty.

Today to buy a solenoid of the quality they were all made to years ago it’s an ‘upgrade’.

Surprised?

maillemaker

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Posted: 09/26/19 11:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Quote:

Given that the OP’s chassis is a 1990 E350 it’s almost guaranteed to be a simple 4 post constant duty solenoid. AKA Ford starter solenoid.

Usually mounted on the drivers side behind the battery it has 1 heavy wire to the house battery, 1 heavy wire to the chassis battery, 1 small wire to an ‘ignition run’ wire and the last wire to the emergency start button. Nothing complicated or mysterious at all.


My 1990 E350's house charging circuity is a bit more complicated than that. I believe there are 2 solenoids involved. Plus what looks like some kind of bus bar or fuse bar kind of thing. I'll take a picture this weekend.

MEXICOWANDERER

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Posted: 09/26/19 12:17pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

For many years continuous duty solenoids resembling Ford starter solenoids...

Did
Not
Exist

1.120-ohm coil solenoids are the original Autolite starter solenoids. The housing is black phenolic. And the (2) #10x32 screws are identified as follows

S for start
I for ignition coil resistor BYPASS

the solenoid mounting bracket was STEEL and served as ground. Without being grounded the solenoid did nothing at all.

The solenoids had a time limit of 30-seconds beyond which it would overheat and char the coil winding.

But the amperage limit was 800

I still use this solenoid for emergency coupling of 2 banks of batteries for starting duty.

For CONSTANT DUTY the tower-type Essex White Westinghouse style solenoid has proven to be more reliable. I prefer the 200-amp model. But there is no question the Ford solenoid is far stronger than even the Essex for high amperage loads. So I am forced to use both. The Ford solenoid has proven to be a winner paralleling battery banks to start 3406 Caterpillar D8R bulldozers.

None of the above is derived from guesswork [emoticon]

maillemaker

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Posted: 09/30/19 10:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

So here is the page from my owner's manual that describes the possible damage to the alternator if you gang the house batteries to the engine battery while the generator is running:

[image]


Also, you were correct about only one solenoid. Here is the brains of my power system as came from Winnebago. There are some bus bars and, I think circuit breakers. I don't know how all of this works, it just has always done so so I have not fiddled with it.

[image]

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