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Everything posted by evolvingpowercat

  1. The 2016 Honda HR-V with 6 speed manual are also flat towable and have base plate kits available for them. I purchased one a few weeks ago installed the Blue Ox Base Plate and am flat towing with no issues.
  2. I have a F53 and the trip resets to zero if the voltage to the module that is supposed to be "always on" goes away. This happens to me when I disconnect the chassis power ( my Winnebago Vista coach has a switch to do this to prevent the chassis battery from discharging during storage ). Might give you some ideas on where to troubleshoot. Good luck.
  3. 5 Star Tuning is north of you in South Carolina, you might give them a call to discuss their engine tune product. I don't think you are helping your fuel economy by forcing the transmission down to a lower gear, even with the Ford OEM tune. Also, higher RPM equals fuel injectors pulsing more times per second, with more gasoline being injected into the engine per second, so a higher vacuum at higher RPM may not equal better gas mileage. I agree that opening up the exhaust and the air intake is more about getting a few more peak HP out of a given size engine and won't pay back in fuel savings. http://5startuning.com/ 5 Star Tuning # 1 Main Location 1820 Trade St. Florence, SC 29501 (843) 536-1244 Exit 164 off I-95 interstate
  4. Updated: I looked at the photo of the product again and it looks like they might not work if you tried to use them on both sides of a "mini" fuse, so this suggestion may not work if your vehicle uses the newer very small fuses. But if it uses the regular size "ATO" fuses then it should work. Possible solution: 1. Use the fuse extenders shown in the link to extend both side of the fuse position to wires, replacing the fuse in the fuse box with a small amp rating blown fuse, less than 5 amp (so you don't confuse it with a "real" fuse). 2. Put an in-line fuse holder in line with one of the wires, using the same size fuse as was in the fuse box. 3. Wire a switch in series with one of the wires, making sure its rated for the Amps of the circuit aka the amps the fuse blows at. 4. Be sure to use the wire size that can handle the current the fuse is rated for. Suggest you make sure to put the switches in a place you can't accidentally operate them while driving the car. The advantage of these fuse extenders is you can remove the modification and put it back to OEM someday if you ever need to. =+-------- new fuse -------- switch | XPST open fuse | | | =+----------------------------/ If you find switches that can handle the amps with more than 1 pole, then you can use less switches. If you do it this way you won't need double pole switches. here is the link to the extenders, you can likely get them at many auto parts stores, too: http://www.amazon.com/WirthCo-30800-Fuse-Mini-Fuses/dp/B000CQDRTI
  5. I have a 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H, 30 feet long and 13,000 lbs weight as I use it with 2007 model year E450 chassis with the 306 HP V10 engine. I also tow a 2400 pound Fiat 500C behind it. My model year used a 3 valve per cylinder design, not sure if your model year used that or the older 2 valve per cylinder design. I get between 8 and 9 MPG driving 60 MPH on mine, it has about 34,000 miles on it. The basic things I do to maximize fuel economy are: Drive 60 MPH even if speed limit is over that Run with recommended oil weight, but using synthetic Run a couple of bottles of fuel injector treatment thru the gas tank every 10,000 miles or so Make sure the tires are fully inflated When possible buy fuel with the lowest percentage of Ethanol possible, if its priced same as fuel with Ethanol. Ethanol blend fuel will cause lower MPG than pure gasoline fuel. Some things that cost in time and money I have done are: I bought a engine control module "RV tune" from 5 Star Tuning, this helps hold the automatic transmission in 5 th Gear ( overdrive ) more of the time vs. the Ford OEM tune. This mainly improves the driving experience as the transmission does not "hunt" between 5 th and 4 th gears. It may slightly improve the fuel economy but not by much. Installed AirTabs to improve air flow around the motor coach and to improve handling when hit by truck blast. You can google air tabs and look at their web site.
  6. I have the Rand McNally Good Sam GPS. I also have to use Google as a backup to see what a "good" route is to compare to what the Rand McNally recommends as have had "gotchas" on about 10 % of trips I have used it on. Pros: I like its user interface and features to find attractions, Wal-mart, campgrounds, etc. along my route. Its easy to tell it your RV length, weight, and height so it can use that information for routing. Its easy to toggle the routing filters between routing for RV and routing for your towed vehicle. Operating time on the battery is OK, you can pre-route at home or in the RV on battery, and leave it on while taking driving breaks even if your 12V outlet goes off with key off in your RV or towed vehicle. If you keep it up date, it also does a pretty good job of warning about road construction sites so you can consider routing around them when planning a trip. It has real time traffic if you set up your phone as a wifi hotspot for it to use to access the internet while traveling. It does well for setting up multi-stop trips where you want it to route you to several mid-way stops on the way to your final destination. Cons: I too have had several trips where it had problems with the route it recommended not making the best sense, where I had traveled before with other GPS (Garmin, Magellan, auto in-dash) did not. That is AFTER setting it to "use fastest route", "allow freeways", and "allow dirt roads". It has some problems with its database and thinks many paved secondary county roads are dirt when they are not. This causes big problems routing to many campgrounds. It often warns incorrectly that paved county roads have a dirt section when they do not. It says some secondary county roads on-route to campgrounds are unpaved when they are 100% paved. If you set it to prohibit dirt roads this causes big problems with the routes it generates. I have to set it to "avoid" un-paved roads rather than setting it to "prohibit" un-paved roads You can not set it to prefer freeways without it generating just plain stupid routes, some 150 miles or more longer than the fastest route. It also does strange things like giving one route in the A to Z direction and a different route between the same endpoints in the other direction. The PC software used to keep the Rand McNally GPS up to date for road construction, road closures, etc. can mess up causing a 1 hour plus call to their support desk so they can correct the problem in your PC remotely. The CONS are still happening after applying their major update that came out this year in 2015. Bottom line, I also wish I had spent the extra $ 100 to get a Garmin.
  7. I am considering the Winnebago Vista LX, a 29' 6" length Gasoline Ford F53 178" Wheelbase Chassis Class A that has 3 slides, that has a full size queen bed in the bedroom. My research is that to get a Class A on the shorter end of the scale you have to consider Gasoline powered Motor Coaches.
  8. Winnebago sold RVs with dual pane windows as factory options in the 2007-2008 time frame up to the present. If you are considering a Winnebago built RV you can ask the current owner to scan and send you the Winnebago build sheet and it will clearly show if the coach was built with dual pane windows or not. Of course the current owner / dealer selling the coach can just look at the windows and tell if they are dual pane or not and let you know. I have a 2008 Itasca Cambria with dual pane windows. Beware, my coach and many others built in this time frame have some of their dual pane glass windows seals failed and moisture gets between the panes and causes visibility problems thru the windows. This can be fixed but at fairly high cost of at least $ 200 per window that gets the problem to have the existing window rebuilt, or twice that to have the dual pane window glass replaced with new. RAS Manhattan, Kansas 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H 2013 Fiat 500C
  9. Thanks, I am a recently retired Electrical Engineer, formerly employed by Sprint. Have always enjoyed designing practical circuits for myself and friends to solve problems like this. It was interesting reverse engineering the Ford Power Door Locks, figuring out how they managed to save a couple cents per vehicle by making the power door locks work with so few wires in and out of the doors.
  10. Hi, I own a 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H Class C Motor Home on a 2007 model year Ford E450 cutaway chassis. I have added keyless door entry that is working great for me and here are some details. I started with a keyless door entry system designed for automobiles and light trucks, I used the inexpensive "Lock10" module that uses 315 MHz coded RF signal that is supplied with 2 matching coded keyfob remotes. The module draws less than 10 milliamps in idle mode so it does not cause excessive idle drain on the OEM Ford E450 battery. This module pulses its lock or unlock relay for 1/2 second similar to what one generates when manually pushing the E450 lock unlock door buttons. This specific module can be found on Ebay as well as Amazon.com. Any module with isolated contact lock and unlock relay "half second pulse to lock or unlock" outputs should work with this modification. I augmented this with two 30 Amp 12 volt coil Single Pole Double Throw (SPDT) automotive relays. The base module relays will not handle the current load needed for the E450 + motor coach door lock motors. The power relays also have a second major benefit - they allow the modification to be connected to the E450 without running any new wires into the passenger door. Cost of parts ( module plus 2 Relays ) was under $ 25. Two power lock wires from the driver's side kick panel leading into the driver's side door are cut and connected into the modification wiring. The 30 Amp Power lock fused power supply wire from the driver's side kick panel leading into the driver's side door is Tee connected into the modification wiring. Two black wires leading to ground below the passenger side lock/unlock switch are cut. The modification wiring finally is connected to a good ground on the driver's side kick panel. Optional: The output from the module that "flashes" the parking lights when the key fob remote is used is Tee connected into the parking light wire that runs down from the kick panel area into the trough along the driver's side door leading towards the rear of the chassis The wiring diagram is attached as a PDF. One design feature is that the door lock / unlock buttons will continue to work even if the module dies or is unplugged from its connector so long as the two power relays remain in the modification. This modification could be adapted to work with any alarm system module that has keyfob remotes that has positive 12 volt pulse outputs to control door locks. RAS Manhattan, Kansas USA 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H 2013 Fiat 500C 2008 Cambria Remote Keyless Entry Modification.pdf
  11. If you get a LED TV with a energy star label of $ 10 per year or less this will indicate it has "LED Backlighting" and uses very little AC watts. I have a 32 inch class Seiki SE32HY LED TV and this plus a Blu-Ray player run great together on a small 150 Watt DC to AC inverter, that is off a 10 amp fuse on my load center, since the fuse never blows both are actually using well under 130 watts DC with both running. I have it installed in my 2008 Itasca Cambria where the 27 inch Jensen 120 V TV used to be. It is taking the bumps and bounces of traveling just fine.
  12. 200 watts will take a lot of roof space, you may want to evaluate what you have room for on top and still be able to access things on your roof you might need to someday. You will need a solar panel charge controller that can handle about 7 amps charging current per 100 watts of solar panel minimum, chances are high that Winnebago used a small solar charge controller that will have to be replaced. Or you can leave the OEM system as is and just add in a totally separate new system, this may make more sense Winnebago might not have even used a solar charge controller with a small 45 watt panel, as their engineers might have thought this output less all the small constant load drains (refrigerator 12 volt board, propane gas sensor) would be below the "trickle charge" threshold of 12 volt lead acid batteries where they don't lose water.
  13. For sure you need to secure your panels to the roof with more than adhesive. There is quite a wind load when traveling down the road and the panels have some weight to them so there is a lot of desire for the mass of the panel to move when the coach is moving up down sideways due to road bumps. As stated get a tube of Dicor self leveling sealant compatible with rubber roof to seal the roof penetrations you make to fasten the panels and to pass your cabling thru the roof. Also note that use of solar panel "Z" brackets will provide the proper air space under the panels. Your panel installation specs will likely recommend a small air space under the panels so they don't get too hot. RAS 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H, 1: 80 watt solar panel on roof Manhattan, Kansas
  14. Solar panels cost about $ 1.60 per watt on Amazon.com with shipping. Add about $ 10 per panel for Z brackets and cabling. Another $ 30 for a charge controller, very important to make sure you don't over charge batteries and lose the water out of them. If your coach already has an inverter that drives your entertainment system 120 volt AC items you would be all set. Change all the lights you will use more than a few minutes per day while boondocking to LED. If you have a nearly new LED TV with what is called "LED backlighting", these are VERY efficient and will use under 2 Amp-hour of battery per hour of use. Older TV with "light bulb" backlighting will use 10 Amp-hour of battery per hour of use OR MORE depending on size. So you MAY want to upgrade your TV and use less solar panels. Satelite TV Receivers are power pigs and also draw 10 Amp-hour OR more depending on if they have DVR recording or not. The furnace 12 volt blower draws about 10 Amp-hour while running. For each 80 watt solar panel you install, you can expect to do between 25 and 50 amp-hours of battery charge per day depending on sun/shade and amount of sunlight on a given day. Panels will put out some charge even when its cloudy. It sounds like you have a large coach so chances are you have 4: 6 volt batteries or 2: 12 volt batteries with 200 Amp-hour of storage. Lead acid batteries last longest if they are not discharged below 50% so this gives you 100 Amp-hours of use on the batteries when you are drawing more than the solar panels are putting out. Think you might want to start with 2: 80 watt solar panels. RAS Manhattan, Kansas 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H - with 1: 80 watt solar panel
  15. Slightly off topic but: There is a huge physical weight difference between most RVs and semi trucks, even if lengths with towed vehicle included are similar for the largest motor coaches. Semi trucks are allowed 20,000 lbs on the two tire steer axle and 34,000 lbs (or more in some cases) on a 4 tire dual axle on major roads, unless signed for less. Total gross weights up to 80,000 lbs (or more in some cases). That's why in almost all states RVs don't have to follow the same rules as semi trucks.
  16. IMO a Winegard RVW-395 Sensar IV directional crank up antenna is the best you can do for over the air TV in a non-fixed RV for a solution that is easy to deploy and stow. Why? It gets your antenna up 3' higher for better reception and its directional so you get better reception due to that as well. The best of all is mating this with the Winegard Sensar RFL-342 Pro Signal Strength Meter with adjustable OTA amplifier. This displays signal strength by channel with a bright visual display, and also with variable audio tone if desired. If you have internet on your computer, tablet, or smart phone you can go to http://antennaweb.org/, put in a zip code and it will show you all the over the air stations possible and how strong or weak their signal will be at that zip code. It will also show you their real channel they transmit on as with HDTV the channel displayed is not the transmitting channel anymore. This can be very helpful if you are using the Winegard Sensar Pro Signal Strength Meter to get a directional antenna pointed and signal maxed out for a particular channel. I have a Winegard Sensar III with Wingman add-on. (Note: all new ones are the RVW-395 Sensar IV and already have the Wingman on them so don't be confused. Wingman is just to upgrade Sensar III to the Sensar IV configuration for better HDTV reception.) IMO its the best you can do for over the air TV on a RV. Down side is getting it pointed in the right direction. I recommend using the Winegard RFL-342 Sensar Pro Signal Strength Meter and Amplifier with it, It lets you see TV channels and their strength in real time so you can point the antenna quickly. The gain is adjustable from 0 to 20 dB ( 1X to 100X amplification ) in 1 dB steps. Once or twice when camping near cities, the TV signal has been so strong I had to turn down the gain to pick up all stations, but normally I can just leave it set to 20 dB gain and never change it. The second down side is it is another item for your departure check list, you have to MAKE SURE you lower it and stow it before driving away, it is not designed for the wind load of a moving coach even if you don't hit anything with it sticking up 3' higher than the roof of your RV. I have used the King Jack antenna and it works but IMO the Sensar IV antenna will pick up signals that are weaker when properly aimed and used with the Sensar Pro Meter / Amplifier. That said many places the signals will be of a strength that both will do fine and get the same stations. RAS Manhattan, Kansas 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H 2013 Fiat 500C
  17. The maximum width at road surface in USA for not needing a oversize vehicle permit is 102 inches ( 8 foot 6 inches ). Above the roadway, it is higher than that, at least in Kansas it is 108 inches ( 9 feet ), so in Kansas at least you can have permanent items like mirrors, awnings, side lights coming out up to 6 inches and be OK and legally not need an oversize vehicle permit. In Kansas over 9 feet wide above the roadway, you need a oversize vehicle permit unless its an vehicle used for agriculture. So far as border crossings go,look out for the Mexico into USA border crossing at Tecate, Mexico. Don't let the soldiers directing vehicles send you down the Auto lanes, insist they send you down the truck lane, motor coaches don't fit going down the non-truck lanes as there is a sharp 90 degree turn in the car lanes you can't see until it's too late. RAS Manhattan, Kansas USA 2008 Itasca Cambria 29H
  18. I installed one myself at the FMCA rally in Madison in my Winnebago Itasca Cambria with Norcold Refrigerator. +1 on Walt's comments. Some installation notes: You have to shut the fridge off and let the heat stack behind the fridge cool down, that takes at least an hour. Once the stack is cool to the touch, the install took about an hour. Instructions are very clear and detailed. You need knife or wire stripper, a crimp connector crimping tool, and wire cutter, to spice the ground wire from the ARP into the 12 volt ground wire, where the cut, strip and crimp comes in. You could try to put the ARP ground to chassis metal, but on my RV it was better to just splice into the Winnebago 12 volt ground wire and be sure to get a good ground that way. ARPrv just shuts off 12 volt power to the fridge for a few minutes if the heat stack temperature approaches the point where the water in the stack would start to boil, which initiates destruction of the fridge over time as the boiling of the water in the system breaks down the anti-corrosion protection of the system.
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