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joelashley

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    Flyfishing, genealogy, photography, gardening, filbert farming, motor home travel.

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  1. Standard AM Equipment 9mmX4mm J hook. Age had apparently jammed the adapter in place, so depressing it’s “tab” and simply pulling didn’t disengage it with the J hook. A little WD40 and some encouragement finally helped get the adapter and blade off, after a brief YouTube consult to be certain I wasn’t misinterpreting the obvious mounting mechanism.
  2. Thanks Rayin. Finally, but not without difficulty removing the old blade to nail down the size, I determined the 28” Trico Force at RockAuto is one of the better deals, but still $28 a pair after$11 shipping, always to be considered if not at Amazon Prime. Will review a few more, but was hoping for more input here re. differences in brand and model performance. Thanks to Rayin and Wildbill for the contributions, which is more than I’ve found elsewhere. 👍🏻
  3. Thanx Bill. I’d assume adapters commonly included would fit our J hook AM wipers. But part of my inquiry here is there any real difference between, say, the Tricos vs for example “high rated” Bosch: https://www.amazon.com/Bosch-24A-Wiper-Blade-Longer/dp/B07VBPKX26?tag=cnet-buy-button-20&ascsubtag=837e7311a74e4a7c88bbdaf24b1e96e8|596716f0-b2f9-4fb3-8597-7c8fdf42235a|dtp&th=1 at $46. Just looking for fellow owners’ experience with commonly available blades, and maybe any differences between frameless and so-called hybrid blades.
  4. The Anco “boomerang” blades on our AM Equipment wipers are rotted. They are 10 years old, 6 of those just parked here by the house with covers on them in summer. I don’t see Anco anymore as Trico bought the company some time ago. As I take it, boomerang was an early nickname for what’s now called frameless or maybe beam blades? At any rate, photographs on websites can be limited or deceiving, and descriptions variable, so I’m not sure what to replace ours with. AM’s “frameless” will work, but like others I’ve looked at online, with shipping they get expensive. I’m sure there are probably differences in quality and coating chemistries, say between Duralast and names like Bosch, Rain-ex, or Michelin, but are those differences noticeable? Our local parts store has Duralast (by Rostra) ones that are more affordable and in stock, but there are two versions… a “Flex” that’s looks more strongly curved and an “Aero”. I’m not sure which is proper for us. I could use recommendations from those here with more knowledge than I’ve been able to glean so far. Cost to me ranges from $40/pair (Duralast) to well over $60. 28 inch blades. 2006 Beaver Monterey, but the factory “traditional” wipers were faulty, replaced by improved “beam” or “boomerang” model in 2012.
  5. Paul, is the Victron 100/30 install easy as to input/output wires and “telephone” connectors?
  6. Dave, I did notice "MPPT" (Maximum Power Point Tracking) stamped on part of the board, and I believe I read somewhere that the 30D is one. I noticed for the first time just a couple of days ago that the "clicking" stops when the battery bay's main switches are set to "ON". I noticed the clicking coincides with the "Bulk" and "Float" lamps on the board switching between one another. This would seem to imply that the controller keeps checking the battery state of charge, constantly trying to bulk charge then backing off to float when discovering the batteries are 13.75. But why it jumps to "Bulk" instead of "Absorb", or more so why it jumps away from Float at all I can't say. I'm guessing that when the Battery Mains are "ON" there is just enough parasitic drain to offset that incessant switching every 2 seconds or so. Regardless of why it's happening, it wasn't doing it before I installed the AGM's. As Paul has already flown down this path, I may just benefit from his experience and do the Victron thing. I recall encountering that brand when exploring lithium batteries. I'm not sure I really need to "control" the controller via my phone; the 30D never needed any monitoring at all until it started doing weird things after the AGM install and dip switch changes. The coach needs to go to Bend for repairs from just sitting here by the house for 5 years, and there is a recommended solar venue there I was considering as an option to AM Solar in Springfield, where I'd originally thought to go for a panel/controller upgrade. Like Paul, I was astounded that their staff had little clue regarding the 30D; that was after waiting for weeks for email replies, and unanswered phone messages, then discovering they were many months out in scheduling as well. But then who isn't these days? It sounded like there were only one or two fellows left over from the Heliotrope Company, and not two that knew the 30D, or at least didn't remember it well; nor were there documents left to peruse. Is the Victron pretty much "plug-n-play"? I understand there are 200 watt panels about the same footprint as our 2006 100 watt one. If I switch the existing 100 watt panel to a modern 200 watt, or add a 200 watt to the 100, is there a lot of wiring changes needed?
  7. Update, and still scratching my head. At some expense I had two boards in the inverter replaced last month due to rodent damage (long story). After reinstalling and connecting the Magnum MS2012 inverter, reconnecting the coach batteries, and plugging in to 30 amp 120v, a few minutes' anxious wait finally brought forth success, and eventually the Magnum Remote went to Float at 13.75 volts, where it's stayed for a couple of weeks now. But, I'm still not sure about that darned solar controller. It was quiet until the last few days, after the first really very sunny, warm day of the year. Then I could hear the controller clicking on land off, as it had started doing last year. It now does it even on cloudy days, but not after sundown. I'm assuming this has something to do with an auto-switch of some sort that cuts the controller charging side off at a certain voltage. But in seconds it clicks again, I assume cycling back on. And I assume it shouldn't be doing that. I'm still hoping someone here can provide a manual for the HPV-30D rather than the HPV-30DR, because as described in last year's posts the one in the coach owner's manual doesn't match the actual beast, and is for a 45D. As per advice here and as in those coach manual's 45D illustrations, I did move dipswitch #4 to the same position as #1 last year. But with the odd clicking sound appearing again, I'm nervous about some harm to some related system. The inverter should be protected, and it's theorized its damage last summer was from the rodent setting up house with it. Turns out the factory put in the wrong 300amp fuse for it in the battery box fuse group. Likely others of the same era have fast-blow fuses that should've been slow-blow, according to Magnum. But rather than take a chance, do you think I should disconnect all the phone wires to the controller for the time being, or is the click cycling okay? Switching to AGM's seems to have eliminated the corrosion issues of posts and tray that I constantly dealt with with wet cell batteries, but I'm not yet confident that the HPV-30D is playing nice with them. For many years the single factory solar panel kept the batteries up while parked here unplugged for months or years at a time here by the house, even in winter. Storing the coach that way, I got 12 years out of both chassis and house batteries. Now I'm not sure I should unplug from the 30amp RV outlet on the house.
  8. Okay, I’ll try that. I note that for wet cells the diagram shows 1, 3, &4 on; but on my controller only #1 is on for the original wet cells. So if that’s the right foursome of dipswitches it’s not following the book. What you suggest puts them in agreement with the diagram’s AGM position, however. So you don’t think there is an EQ/FL switch? The “Temp Comp” switch I did see near the red foursome, but in my photo it’s hidden in the shadow of the black temp sensor wire connection component. But I have yet to run across an EQ/FL one. Joel
  9. Carl, Beaver had trouble well before 2007 and sold to SMC (Safari) in 1994 before Monaco bought SMC in 2002. Our ‘06 was one of the first years built in Coburg by Monaco instead of in Bend. Then Monaco went bankrupt, and the last of a few 2010 models were built in 2009. The Beaver name went through 2 more owners, Navistar in ‘09 and REV Group in 2013, before Beaver Coach Sales at the original home base in Bend bought the name a few years ago. I don’t like calling my dealer, BCS, in Bend about every issue I run into, as they are very busy, have provided a lot of help already over the years, and I’d rather not tie up their specialists’ time sans compensation. It is however a last resort if absolutely unavoidable. The great fellow members at the Beaver Ambassador Club Forum tried to help, but I’m still swingin’ in the wind, because the solar needs some sort of modification to its settings before more sunny weather, or we hit the road. I can’t have the inverter/charger shutting down just because it’s a nice day. The owners manuals, for both Monaco/Beaver and for the controller, imply a simple two micro switch change, but if no one here can offer curative knowledge of the HPV-30D I may have to disconnect the white ground panel wire from the controller, which hopefully would cut the solar panel out. There was supposed to be a fuse one could pull to stop arcing whenever a battery cable was removed, but in 14 years no one could ever find it on or near the solar controller. It’s like it’s not the controller it’s ID’d as. Joel
  10. No one on other forums has been able to help, and even AM Solar, the enheritor of Heliotrope, doesn't seem to know how. I put new Fullriver 6v AGMs in our 06 Beaver Monterey last month. After a bit, the Magnum MS2012 inverter balanced them out at 13.4 to 13.7 volts. Magnum had me set the Remote over the entry door to "AGM2". I intended to reset the solar controller dipswitches as per the Monterey manual and another document, where the only change for wet cell to AGM was moving #3 dipswitch down to off, and a so-called jumper switch from EQ to the non-EQ position to prevent equalization charge cycles. When I took the HPV-30D's cover off, I couldn't find those switches, and they weren't where the diagrams said they were, at the opposite end of the controller from the bank of main wire connectors. I still can't find them. AM Solar emailed a pdf of adjustment procedures for the Absorb and Float voltages, but that's not the same as finding and moving 2 simple tiny switches. When I tried the adjustments I wasn't sure of the potentiometers the document referred to for voltage changes, so after trying it I returned everything back to where it was. Last week we had our first really nice sunny day. When I went into the coach (parked "stored" by our house for 4 years) to check the Magnum Remote, it surprised me with "Backfeed fault", or something similar. I called Magnum again and as I suspected he said the Magnum had disconnected to protect itself, likely from an unusual solar input. The screen still shows 13.7 volts. The battery mains have been off and the coach unplugged since before any messing with the solar controller. And to avoid misunderstanding, I didn't mess with the controller until after the backfeed alert. AM Solar would just as soon I schedule a solar revamp 2+ months out and drive down to their facility in Springfield. I may well do that, but they stated also that only 2 of them remember much about what he called an HPV-30DR (mine has no "R"), and he still couldn't explain why my manuals' diagrams don't match what I'm seeing "under the controller's hood". Nor did he offer a description of the correct two potentiometers his adjustments instructions refer to, for adjusting voltages in Float and absorb. The issue is that there's a lot more than 2 potentiometers on that board, and from the awkward position I have to get into just to see it, it's very hard to read any writing on the board. Magnum said to just reset their Remote, and that it should be fine, and yes it could do it again on another sunny day. Assuming this is due to to the controller trying to cycle an equalizing charge, I'd just as soon reset things for AGMs as the Monaco/Beaver manual suggests. At least for the time being. Can't tell you how many times I've told others on Forums where to find those switches, only to now discover I may have been misinforming them! I sure could use more input from anyone familiar with that controller. If helpful, I could supply a photo of my controller, albeit with drainpipes, hoses, and wires in the way, and of the manuals and the adjustments instructions. I'm amazed at the online lack of info in this regard specific to that controller, given how many coaches must have had them installed. Joel
  11. Much to my chagrin, the supplier informed me that contrary to what others have said, and what I regrettably repeated on more than one site, US Battery’s AGM products are also made in China, not the USA. I ultimately chose to forego my lithium dreams, and have 4 Fullriver AGMs awaiting pickup when the weather here cooperates long enough for installation and tray renovation/painting. Top notch complete professional lithium installation went north of $9000, with less complete around $7K. Our “older” Magnum model 2012 inverter system , ca. 2006, turned out to be too low of a version (level 1?), requiring a costly software and/or hardware upgrade to use lithium’s. This was counter to what a respected tech told me, who’d indicated I could pretty much replace the wet cells with lithium’s straight across. His experience I have to assume was with more recent coaches and inverters at higher levels. Even without moving the batteries inside for temperature control or upgrading our solar system that’s nowadays comparatively minimalist, a self-install would go close to $5000. I just can’t fathom the value. So reverting to my still-respected tech’s AGM experience, I chose his first recommended Fullriver brand and their longer warranty. His second choice was US Battery, but the warranty is less and the price identical since my supplier offered the normally more expensive but regularly stocked Fullriver at the same price. Like it or not, mostly not, certain Chinese-made AGMs have better records/quality than those made elsewhere. Cost for 4 Fullriver 6v AGMs: $1136. A simple inverter remote programming change and one changed dipswitch on the solar controller is all else needed. Also I should note that in a prior post I’d stated that AGMs were quite heavy. What I’d read in that regard was mistaken. The author was ambiguously referencing a different and much heavier leaded model than what fits a normal 4 wet cell tray. The ~224 ah models weigh about the same as wet cell U2200/GC2 deep cycles, ~60-65lbs. So there is no concern regarding weight.
  12. Obiwan, what are you doing about keeping the lithium’s warm in cold weather? I’m getting conflicting info. AM Solar suggests LifeBlue low-temp lithium’s, an “alternator-friendly” isolator bypass Victron Cyrix Battery Combiner, a solar controller upgrade Victron SmartSolar MPPT 100/30 (30A), and a “level 4” inverter, which I’ve yet to determine if my 2006 Magnum is or isn’t. This seems to not mesh with what my respected tech in Bend suggested... that my existing setup would work fine as is. It just might not charge lithium’s quite as quickly as a specialized charger would. That does mesh with what you’ve been told. So I need to perhaps contact Magnum regarding my specific model’s lithium compatibility. But the expense still bothers me, and AM Solar’s varies with what all they do, such as adding a 200 watt panel to my 100w one. With labor the costs heads toward $7000+ and the Virus has their service dates 3-4 months out. This has me thinking back to AGM’s as a far simpler endeavor. Recommended was Centennial (I think), but I found it was foreign made by US Battery. Then I discovered the comparable American made model US Battery USAGM2224 Group GC2. As intriguing as lithium’s may be, $1200 for 4 AGMs vs. $4000-$7000 is hard to ignore. I nevertheless will remain tuned to this thread for further discussion.
  13. I was heading for AGM’s to replace my four 14 year old original Interstate flooded 6v U2200 (GC2’s). But then I read how heavy they are. And 2 new maintenance-free group 31 chassis, and 4 AGM GC2’s would run around $1500 at Batteries Plus Bulbs. I had read, last year, articles in Motorhome and the FMC magazine about lithiums, and 31 lbs. @ sounded better than the 160 lbs. I’d heard AGM GC2’s weigh. But Battle Borns 100ah are $950@, and that’s $2300 more than AGM’s plus the cost of the two maintenance-free chassis bats. The deal breaker was having to change inverter and solar setups. Nope, won’t do that. But then a couple months back I read someone said you don’t necessarily need to change anything if your setup can charge AGM’s, because you just need to not use equalizing charge on lithiums. Just set your dipswitches and/or inverter remote panel for AGM mode. Okay, bad back, 31 lbs we can handle... not 160. And I’m not sure the battery tray, built for 360 lbs., would like the extra 400 lbs the AGM house ones would add. Regarding that tray, the Battle Borns are 2 inches longer than GC2’s, but when I looked, the tray has only a 1” angle iron backstop, with 3” or 4” more to the very back of the tray; all I have to do is drill new bolt holes and move the angle iron backstop a couple inches back. So then I check into different brands of lithiums. Be forewarned that there are cheaper brands out there, including some that others touted a great Costco deal. But that brand, though some $200 @ less on sale... well you get what you pay for. Made in China, it’s lighter weight is due to a less stout structure. That means it may not hold up well to the vibrations it’s case and internal mountings and connections will encounter on highways; they are made for use in non-mobile mass assemblies in backcountry and off-grid home solar setups. Battle Borns are built differently than that, perhaps of some Chinese components, but designed and assembled here with highway use in mind. Yes, the 100aH vs ~220aH notion seems troubling, but as others here note, taking a flooded or AGM lower than 50% is more than what’s commonly advised, if not plain abusive. Lithiums are not harmed if drained to nearly 0%. And they’ll supply full voltage the whole way, behaving much like any lithium cordless tools you may own... it just keeps going until it suddenly stops. Battle Borns and some others have monitors to check on their status. And consider also that in the field you won’t need to run your genset as long because they charge back up faster. Does it come down to longevity and weight? My Interstates went 12 years before giving me serious charge-holding issues. Those that only get 3-4 years must be regularly dumping theirs below 50% (at 12 volts it’s half discharged). The cold weather thing is bothersome, but we’ve rarely found ourselves boondocking in subzero conditions, so that is a factor that members who do may want to explore. I understand there are devices or mats that some use to gently heat the lithium bank. Where the energy comes from for that is your guess. 200 or greater aH models may be available, but their power comes from being larger. Those of us with the more common class A diesels that have trays designed for four GC2 house batteries can find that there are, like in my case, very minimal tray modifications to make 100 aH Battle Borns fit. This probably sounds like I’m a Battle Born salesman, but I’m still edgy about the value factor. Will it add to the coach resale? Maybe, but you and I know it won’t be as much as we’d hope. Sure, there’s a brand that offers an FMCA discount, but the numbers I saw still doesn’t make them competitive. I merely came here to glean more opinions and see what others have done and experienced, and ended up posting this long-winded expose. My apologies. I just know that although I have no great issue with having to occasionally add water to wet cell golf cart batteries, I’m sure as heck tired of the corrosion on the metal tray parts and having to replace “melted“ hold-down strap buckles every couple months. The older a wet cell gets the more charging effort it requires, the hotter it gets, and the more gassing it emits, resulting in more frequent water replenishment and acid gas metal erosion. Decisions, decisions.
  14. One member of the Beaver Amb. Club is currently reporting a possible issue with a Fusion Energi (same or similar towability as a Hybrid) slipping into Park while towed.
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