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  1. All participating in the topic, I believe the battery issue has been resolved. One of the 8D batteries was found to be deficient through an individual load test. Per Herman's recommendation, I acquired a simple load tester, and after working with a battery dealer and the prior owner, disconnected the 2 batteries and tested each. One passed and the other failed. So a few days ago, I replaced both with new 8Ds. All good, as prior issues have been eliminated. As my current use is limited, I'm shutting down the master electrical switch when the coach is stored. I'm planning on a short trip after Memorial Day, with the plan to test/verify most systems and be fairly close to home, if any significant problems occur. Overall this was a great learning experience, and I'm also now much more knowledgeable about the Trace Inverter. Thank you for everyone's help and advise. Regards, Jon
  2. Kay, good afternoon. Your above assessment is quite valuable, and knowing that the prior owner had this coach plugged into a shore power line at all times, when sitting, seems to indicate you are on-track here with your assessment. I will begin this assessment process, as soon as my load tester arrives and sort this out. Again, this is quite helpful and provides pointers to get this resolved. And I'll let you know the disposition/results. Thank you.
  3. Kay, I appreciate the added insight and your description of the modified disconnect system implemented. My MCI coach has a master power switch, and I now shut this down/off, when I leave the coach for any time period. I'm still finding the chassis/engine batteries will not start the engine when I'm back at the coach, ~3-7 days later. I'll load test these batteries in the next week or so, once my load tester arrives. The current approach, suggested by the prior owner, to get the coach running, is to run the on-board generator for ~15mins, providing enough charge to the chassis/engine batteries. During this process, the inverter is operating as a battery charger. This process works fine, and I can start the generator directly, or use the Trace to start it (This process is described in the Trace manual, and I'll confirm this once at the coach.) So I've no problems getting the engine running, and charging the batteries from the alternator. It is just sorting out what might be draining the batteries, and this should be nothing, given the master power is off, or if the batteries, due to age/maintenance, are not able to hold a charge and need to be replaced. These are leadacid/gel batteries, from my understanding. Again, I believe the load test will verify the batteries are not holding the expected charge. Interestingly, I had no issues when driving the coach from OH to MA, evening shutting down the coach while parked in a rest area overnight, and leaving the parking light on. This chassis/engine battery situation presented once in MA with colder weather and the coach being outside. The prior owner kept the coach garaged with a 220V plugged in, as he was regularly transporting celebrity folks as a business, until a few years ago. I've spoken to the prior owner, and these chassis/engine batteries may be 5+yrs old, although I'm only able to identify the maintenance record for replacing the house batteries, ~3yrs ago. So again, I've believe this is an age/maintenance item. Your added insight is greatly appreciated. Thank you.
  4. Hello all responding to my question, I'll address the above in order of your all responses, **** and Lois, I'm working with a Trace Engineering SW Series Inverter/Charger with Rev. 4.01 and software. I've queried the Trace menu and can confirm the 4.01 software version is verified. In the lower left of the Owner's manual is this added information, Part No. 2031-5. Rev. B - Sept 1, 1999. Also, I've spoken to the current Trace tech support group and the contact has provided helpful information and agreed to review an updated configuration, once I've written this up. Probably this week. Kay, I appreciate your added experience/insight with the MCI unit. I've been shutting down the main power while the coach is currently stored outside. So my current procedure to start the coach is to run the generator for ~20mins, then the chassis/engine batteries are charged enough to start the D60. Unfortunately running the engine for ~20-30mins is not providing enough charge for the batteries to hold the charge level even for a week+. The prior owner kept the coach indoors with a 220v shoreline to keep the batteries charged. I'm not able to do this, in the current situation. Since you indicate disconnecting the 24volt system, are you actually disconnecting the wires from the batteries or simply shutting down the circuit breakers? This will be helpful to understand, since the prior owner installed 2 master breakers, a 12/24v and 110v and I can shut these both off. I've not done this yet, since I've had other items to chase up, and will get to this probably tomorrow. RayIN, I'll check the product reviews for both digital and analog units to verify I'm purchasing a quality tester. and I had intended to go to harbor freight. I appreciate everyone's help, guidance and insight here. I'm making progress "climbing" the learning curve and looking forward to getting back on the road, after my return trip from picking up the coach. Thank you. --- Jon
  5. Herman, Yes, quite sure the Trace can be programmed to start the generator and 3-phase charge the batteries. I've the manual and in reading the menu commands/system, the procedure is fairly well identified. Again, my opportunity here is attempting to do it correctly, the 1st time, and not mess something up. I'm still relatively new with much of these systems, and it is a bit "drinking from the fire hose" program, reading through numerous manuals. And in this situation, there is value to documenting the current configuration, so it can be easily "rolled-back" if needed. I'll do this to get started, and write out the new procedure prior to "programming the Trace". I've spoken to the Tech Support crew and they have agreed to review the new procedure to avoid errors. Again, I'm hopeful there are some folk reading the forum that has done some Trace Inverter configuring previously. Your recommendation to get to Harbor Freight and purchase a load tester is quite helpful. I'll do this, as there is a HF here in my area, Springfield, MA. Thank you
  6. Hello all, I'm recent to the RV world and now have a MCI '99-2K coach, well outfitted when it was delivered ~20yrs ago. The electrical/power system includes a Trace Inverter model - SW4024MC2. Additionally, the coach has a PowerTech (PT) 20kw generator integrated into the inverter, so the inverter can be programmed to charge the batteries (chassis/engine) when they fall below a set value. What experience does anyone have with the Trace Inverter menu system and programming the inverter? I've the unit's operating manual and understand the menu system, and am interested in operational experience. I would like to avoid creating new problems, so anyone's experience with programming this unit and working through the menu system will be helpful. Also, following my return trip ~15hrs on the road, after acquiring the coach, the chassis/engine batteries do not seem to hold a charge. When I attempt to start the coach after it sitting 5-7 days, I need to run the generator ~20mins to get enough battery power to start the engine (D60/12.7L). So there remains some load/draw on the batteries or they are not able to charge correctly. I'm understanding these batteries could be 3-5yrs old. One of my service items is to have a load test applied to the battery "pack" once the local service facilities reopen in ~3weeks. I appreciate any guidance. Thank you. Regards, Jon
  7. Richard, I will certainly get some photos together, hopefully in a few weeks. Thank you. --- Jon
  8. Kay, I appreciate your reply here, and the referral to John Cherry. I'll follow-up with John next week and make the introduction. John may be helpful with design or work on a few interior modifications I'm planning to meet our family and pups needs. Also, I'm working through an initial road worthiness issue with the tag steering system. John may have some insight here that could be helpful. Also, I'm aware that the reg'l MCI service center is in the Philadelphia area, in NJ, and will check on the proximity to White Have, PA. Thank you for this referral. Stay safe/well. Regards, Jon
  9. All, good evening and I hope everyone is safe and well, in these difficult times. I'm closing out this topic, Evaluating a Prevost purchase, as I've now purchased a MCI motorhome. This coach is a 1999-2000 year, previously used as a celebrity coach. I'm only the 2nd owner and was able to obtain all maintenance records and related coach operator manuals, along with manuals for the installed equipment, e.g. powertech generator. So while a bit "drinking from a firehose" to get informed and up to speed on the coach, it appears to meet our needs. I'm currently working through mostly minor items from the initial safety test, some lights, horn, etc., I'm expecting to have the coach through a successful MA inspection in the next 2-3 weeks, depending on the current shutdown activities and staff availability. Also, as I come across specific issues/needs/information, e.g. Trace Engineering SW inverter/chargers, I'll get these posting into the appropriate forum areas. Again, I appreciate everyone's contribution here and offering advice. All helpful, and we are looking forward to getting out on the road this late spring/summer. Thank you for your help. --- Jon
  10. Hi. Too far, as in a plane ride. I expect if I really want indoor storage, I can find it closer to my Western Mass residence. Again, I'm not convinced about the indoor storage need. I've seen a few posts that identify reasonable approaches to outdoor storage. And I'll only be storing the coach Jan-Mar+ for 3+years, then I expect we will be traveling during these harsh winter months. Adding solar panels, permanent or portable, seems like a reasonable solution for getting power to the chassis and house batteries during storage. So I'll investigate this possibility. Thank you.
  11. Again, very helpful information, and generally fits with some of my current activities to resolve maintenance and storage needs. I've used MCI's roadside assistance service to identify local service organizations, and then gotten their recommendations for storage nearby. Thank you.
  12. Hi, good afternoon and happy new year to you, also. My concern w/maintaining the current owner relationship is access to knowledge/expertise and the prior mechanic. All helpful with a big, somewhat complicated coach and a new owner. So I see some value here. And I appreciate the pointer about outside storage, and concur, that after 20years, and 400K miles there is no real reason to keep this coach in indoor storage. I've found very limited availability of outside electrical facilities and have been pointed toward solar units to meet the need. Also, with the coach outside, the generator can be run on any required frequency to charge the batteries, etc., as another option. thank you. PS: I appreciate the pointer about traveling with dogs. Ours are 2 german short hair pointers, fairly large. I'll remake one of the bunk areas for the crates, as we only need 3 bunks.
  13. All, again my thanks for everyone's comments and insights. Very helpful. I've done my initial bus/coach inspection, a 1999-2000 MCI, converted to an entertainer/star coach just after delivery. This coach has ~400K miles, and I've all 20yrs maintenance history and have inspected the bus w/the current, and only owner. The owner included the mechanic having done all the maintenance and record keeping. The owner, mechanic and I spent ~1hr together going through the engine, transmission and ECAS maintenance activities. The owner and I spent ~another 3 hours covering the interior, usage profile, other questions, etc. This unit appears to be a possible purchase and meets our needs. Unfortunately, PeterPan Bus, has been unable to deliver on the prior commitments. This bus/coach has a Detroit Diesel S60 engine and Allison B500 transmission, and again I've access to all the maint. and fluid analysis records. All valuable. I'm now looking for a service organization and storage facility in the CT I91 corridor. I'll be reviewing/interviewing a few after the new year. also, I've come across Nat'l Indoor RV storage, and their facility is in the Atlanta area. The current owner would prefer is store this coach indoors w/30-50amp continuous power. Most of this is to support 10+yr electronics, that I've no value for, and to eliminate the winterization process time/expense. I'm interested in anyone's insights into the storage issues, indoor/outdoor, and service organizations. thank you and a happy new year to all.
  14. Hello FMCA responders to this post, My apologies for my tardy reply/update, a busy fall. First,, I appreciate everyone insights here, all very helpful. Many thanks to everyone. I particularly interested in these MCI comments/insights, as I live fairly close to PeterPan Bus HQ, and this larger reg'l carrier runs MCI buses exclusively. So there is a wealth of expertise in this area to support/maintain a MCI RV/entertainer. Additionally, I've completed most hurdles for this purchase and am now assessing 3 ~20yr old MCI entertainer/RV units. We will see how this goes. Thank you all again. --- Jon
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