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 > Your search for posts made by 'DrewE' found 638 matches.

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RE: New to RVing, GVWR and multiple State DL

As others have said, an RV used for personal noncommercial use does not require a CDL. (Other situations, such as delivering RVs from the manufacturer to the dealer, may require a CDL depending on the weight of the RV.) The definitions of what vehicles require a CDL are determined at the federal level, so they are the same for all states. Some states do require different classes of non-commercial licenses for certain vehicles including large RVs, but apparently Florida is not one of them. At any rate, if you're legally licensed to drive your vehicle in your home state, you can drive it anywhere in the United States with that license. I don't see how an out-of-state policeman would even know what sort of a driver's license you have based on seeing a vehicle traveling down the road. Even in state, it's hard in as much as they have to make the assumption that the owner of the vehicle is actually the one currently driving it. The RVs were presumably being pulled over for other reasons; maybe they were suspected of being overlength or having other equipment-related violations, or were double towing, or were on a road or in a lane where such vehicles were not permitted. It's hard to say.
DrewE 05/31/20 02:14pm Class A Motorhomes
RE: 12V wiring Aluminum Cargo Trailer conversion

Assuming you have electric trailer breaks with a breakaway switch, the trailer chassis will have to be grounded for that system to work properly. (I guess that's also assuming you're using the house battery for the emergency braking power, which is standard practice. Having to maintain two separate batteries when one will do just fine on its own seems...well, silly.) I do have a breakaway system with an old dead battery, was figuring on wiring it to the new 12V house battery system. I haven't looked yet but assumed it was grounded back to the Tow Vehicle? The ground for the trailer brakes (and hence also the ground for the brake lights and whatnot) needs to be connected to the negative of the battery, and the positive from the battery goes to the breakaway switch, and the other side of the breakaway switch to the brake coils in parallel with the brake wire from the tow vehicle connection. The ground connection can't go back all the way through the tow vehicle, of course, since the whole point is to activate the trailer brakes should the trailer and tow vehicle become separated from each other. It is shared with whatever ground is there from the tow vehicle connection, which I think might be what you meant. I did a tiny bit of research, and apparently the accepted best practice for aluminum trailers is to run ground wires to the brakes and lights and still bond the frame to the ground connection from the tow vehicle. The bonding among other things helps prevent static buildup (I assume mainly from the tires rolling down the road). Apparently sometimes the brakes and lights are both grounded to the frame themselves and also grounded via a ground wire; for many trailer lights, they'd be grounded to the frame simply by being installed unless special care was taken to electrically isolate them. I had been under the impression that brakes were at times similarly grounded via their mounting to the axle, but it seems that was a false impression--they have wires for both sides of the coil to be connected up.
DrewE 05/30/20 02:26pm Tech Issues
RE: 12V wiring Aluminum Cargo Trailer conversion

If the IOTA45 converter is simply properly bonded to my house 120V what purpose would the chassis ground serve? The converter chassis needs to be bonded to the RV chassis (as is detailed in its installation manual), and the 120V ground needs to be bonded to the RV chassis. The 120V ground to chassis connection is for safety in case there should be an electrical fault in the 120V wiring, causing the hot to short to the chassis. If the chassis were not grounded, it would be hot and pose a shock hazard to anyone entering or exiting the RV (a hot skin). Having it bonded to ground prevents that, and assuming the short is low enough impedance causes the breaker to trip due to overcurrent. The 12V bond is a bit more subtle. As I understand it, it is practically speaking impossible to totally isolate the chassis from 12V negative ground with typical appliances and lights, and so it's likely that the chassis will be connected to the 12V negative side somehow or another. If there's not a good bond between the battery and the chassis, and the converter output and the chassis, then there's the opportunity for all of the converter current to find its way through e.g. the 120V ground wire or the ground wires for various 12V appliances back to the battery in the case where the main wire from the converter's negative output to the battery is broken or disconnected. This amount of current can easily be a dangerous overload for those wires; hence, as a safety precaution, they must be tied to the chassis with a low impedance wire that will carry the fault current safely. Assuming you have electric trailer breaks with a breakaway switch, the trailer chassis will have to be grounded for that system to work properly. (I guess that's also assuming you're using the house battery for the emergency braking power, which is standard practice. Having to maintain two separate batteries when one will do just fine on its own seems...well, silly.)
DrewE 05/30/20 10:50am Tech Issues
RE: Onan Emerald 4000

Sounds like it's probably either a bad starter solenoid, a loose or bad wire between the starter and the solenoid, a bad starter, or a bad ground probably in that area. (That is assuming the engine isn't physically seized and can be turned over manually.)
DrewE 05/30/20 02:26am Tech Issues
RE: Exterior Entry Door Strut attachment Ideas Please?

Might it be pracitcal to hinge the door on the other side? Could it open more widely that way? Usually they are set up to open with the hinge towards the front, I suspect because that way if it's somehow open or unlatched when driving the air flow will tend to force it closed. However, I would have no scruples about having mine open the other way around if it made more sense otherwise. A chain or similar screen door-style check is a good idea. A bit of wire rope (often called aircraft cable) would work nicely too and probably rattle less.
DrewE 05/29/20 10:09am Tech Issues
RE: Overhead Clearence

You'll get a variety of opinions. From what I understand, very rarely if ever are clearances less than the listed amount; generally the actual clearance is slightly (or sometimes not so slightly) more so as to account for the possibilities of repaving, frost heaves, settling of the foundations of whatever is overhead, vehicles bouncing as they travel, etc. That said, it is not a bad idea to be cautious about these things. At the very least do measure your actual clearance requirements for yourself, and maybe consider putting it on a card or sticker on the dashboard for reference. (It can be useful to have your actual overall length and width ready at hand, too; if you have rear view mirrors that can be folded in, the width both with them folded and with them deployed is occasionally handy to know.)
DrewE 05/28/20 01:41pm Beginning RVing
RE: Neutral lines reversed

I wonder if the equipment is reading that neutral and ground are reversed? There's no electrical way to detect such a fault, since the only difference between neutral and ground lies in what purpose they serve and whether the physical wire has a jacket around it. Both are connected together (bonded) at the main service entrance, so both are at the same or very nearly the same potential. (Just for clarity, note that the RV's electric panel is not the "main service entrance" referred to above; ground and neutral should be kept strictly separated in the RV electric panel.)
DrewE 05/28/20 09:09am Tech Issues
RE: Calling all 12V Battery Experts

Since you have AC power there, couldn't you just use an AC to DC converter? You can pick up a cheap one for 20 bucks or so. This is I think the best answer. You need a 12V (or maybe slightly higher) power supply capable of putting out at least the current the cooler requires; I'd go with at least 2A to be on the safe side. The battery is then an unnecessary complication, and along with it the associated maintenance (checking electrolyte levels, cleaning terminals, etc.). You can find plenty of power supplies that would be entirely suitable on Amazon, and elsewhere, for ca. $10.
DrewE 05/28/20 08:59am Around the Campfire
RE: Coach battery not charging

Does the coach battery supply power to the coach once it's charged? It sure sounds like it simply isn't connected for some reason--a loose or damaged cable, a bad ground connection, the battery disconnect switch set to disconnect (storage) rather than connect (use), a blown main fuse or tripped main breaker, etc. If you're getting power from the battery, but it's not charging from any of those sources, that's rather more mysterious. As best as I can tell, you have a combination of two faults: a bad or mistakenly disconnected converter and something wrong with the battery isolator circuit (such as a bad solenoid). Both the generator and shore power use the converter to charge the battery.
DrewE 05/27/20 03:19pm Tech Issues
RE: 12V wiring Aluminum Cargo Trailer conversion

I think you have missed the point that there are 2 separate 12v systems in a TT. One is the TV (tow vehicle and the DMV lighting) circuit and the other is the TT. They should not be mixed. Both ought to be bonded to the trailer frame, though, regardless of whether that forms the negative return for current or not. For the house electric system, if there is a converter included, I think this is a requirement of the NEC. (Similarly, the 120V ground needs to be bonded to the chassis.)
DrewE 05/26/20 03:28pm Tech Issues
RE: China electric rv factory visit

The little 1.6 liter engine being capable of providing more power than would be demanded for driving left me wondering,,,, He said a range with the genny running of about 600 Km, but at what speed? (35 kph is useless) can this rig maintain highway speeds in the US and what about uphill? The engine being able to give a recharge to 80% of capacity in 50 minutes seems great. The designer/builder did seem to have a lot of ideas which could be really useful here. I had thought before that the most popular option on Musk Cyber truck would probably be for a built in Honda Generator. To get you home after a couple hours charge time. They did mention that the units were governed to a maximum of 90 km/h for legal reasons, but that some people had hacked them to get top speeds of around 110 km/h. I'd guess the highway performance is similar to one of the old Toyota pickup-based class C motorhomes--slow, but you can get there eventually. Performance around town is likely better. There were a fair number of nice ideas incorporated; the mini-split air conditioner system and the unified hybrid/EV and house battery system both are things that I'm a bit surprised are not becoming more popular with motorhomes here.
DrewE 05/26/20 03:25pm Around the Campfire
RE: Chassis battery issue

Running a wire between the batteries also means that house loads when not on shore power will depelete the chassis battery, which undoes one of the primary reasons for having two batteries. Having one with a switch (and appropriate current limiting/overcurrent protection) would be okay if you always remembered to operate the switch properly. The battery tenders/trickle chargers you get at parts stores are different in that they are AC powered rather than DC, and I think at least some tend to discharge the battery if they are connected to the battery but not to AC power. The really nice thing about the Trik-L-Start, besides being a reliable, well-built device, is that it always just works without needing any additional effort on your part. It also has the advantage of working properly if the house battery is being charged by solar rather than by shore power, under which conditions a plug-in battery tender would not be so useful.
DrewE 05/25/20 11:59am Class A Motorhomes
RE: Mini Winnie needs major work

The Class Cs never had the "real" Triton engine. The cramped engine bay meant they all got the 2 valve head lower powered V10. Not a desirable motor power wise. So bulletproof and long lasting (300K+ miles) most vehicles with them go to the junkyard with a perfectly good engine ruining the motor's resale value. Easy visual check: 2 valve, plastic valve cover, 3 valve, aluminum cover. The three valve variant was introduced in 2005, so before that year all vehicles--not just the E series chassis--had the two valve version. To my mind both versions are real Triton engines (and so Ford calls both versions). They're good dependable engines, as you say, but quite common and so not valuable in terms of money.
DrewE 05/25/20 06:19am Class C Motorhomes
RE: Mini Winnie needs major work

It will be a whole lot of work to rebuild, though you presumably already know that. For most people, I think the best advice would be to walk away; but if you're looking for a large project to work on, maybe it would be reasonable. I doubt you'd make much money off the venture in either case, especially once you factor in what your labor is worth; a 20+ year old class C, even if it's in pristine condition (which of course this one isn't), is not especially valuable. Likewise 20 year old RV appliances do not command particularly high prices. Water damage, as you probably already know, is quite often more extensive than it first appears.
DrewE 05/24/20 09:02pm Class C Motorhomes
RE: Will Your Next Tow Vehicle be Electric?

It will be a cold day when an electric motor is small enough to carry in a MH and strong enough to push/pull it all day long. Such motors have been around for a very long time--ever see a trolley bus or diesel-electric train locomotive? Traction motors are generally smaller than internal combustion engines of similar continuous power ratings (and require less in the way of a transmission, as well). The thornier problem is getting batteries that contain enough energy for fairly long-distance travel while still being reasonably compact, lightweight, and affordable.
DrewE 05/23/20 10:51am Tow Vehicles
RE: 1995 Bounder Fuel (gas) leak

If the fuel is coming out the filler solely where the pump nozzle fits, that doesn't sound too off to me; it just means you overfilled the tank and left no room at all for expansion or sloshing. It's not wise to top off to the very tippy top; stopping at the first or maybe second click-off of the pump is appropriate (provided, of course, your filler is arranged so that it doesn't prematurely shut off when there's still many gallons worth of empty space in the tank--if it does that, it usually means the gas lines from the filler to the tank are not properly routed or are pinched or something). Besides the possibility of gas coming out, this is a good way to harm the vapor recovery system by having the recovery canister be filled with liquid gas. If it's leaking from the hose or connections between the hose and other parts, yes something ought to be fixed: either a loose connection or a worn or damaged hose, most likely.
DrewE 05/22/20 01:49pm Tech Issues
RE: Rear View Camera vs Backup Camera

When I installed my camera for my backup monitor I actuated it with power from the backup light circuit with a .5 amp resistor in line. I also ran a 12v feed down stream from the resistor, with a switch that I can power the camera at any time. It does not backfeed the backup light circuit. I have a GPS that I also use as the monitor. I believe you mean a diode, not a resistor.
DrewE 05/21/20 12:28pm Beginning RVing
RE: Autoformer Voltage Booster Question

If the input cord or plug on the autotrasformer has been replaced, maybe it was miswired there with the hot and neutral reversed.
DrewE 05/20/20 07:04pm Tech Issues
RE: Harbour Freight Jack stand recall.

Just pulling a leg, there's more crazy misspelled words out there than you can shake a stick at. :B Yep. I'm far from perfect but, if I had a dollar for every misspelled or misused word I see I would be driving a new Prevost. :) You're sure you wouldn't be diving a new Pervast? ;)
DrewE 05/20/20 07:02pm Tech Issues
RE: How to camp with electric only

I figure on about five gallons per person per day with moderate conservation: navy showers, not letting the water run excessively when washing hands, brushing teeth, etc. but still using and washing dishes. Since my motorhome has about a 35 gallon fresh water tank, that means a week when traveling alone. Usually about the time the fresh water tank is getting empty, the gray water tank is getting full. Every (or at least very nearly every) dump station I've happened upon has had a potable water connection associated with it, beside the usual non-potable rinse hose. Indeed, typically the difference between the two is just labeling and use and cleanliness; the water for both usually comes from the same supply.
DrewE 05/20/20 06:57pm General RVing Issues
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