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Old 02-08-2011, 09:26 PM   #1
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Electrical? Water heater? Water pump?

The systems for my 64 international overlander version. If you look at my other post, you can see I have all the original systems. I plan on keeping the fridge and stove of course, but the other items are hidden. I don't like problems, so I'd rather upgrade than have problems. What are the recommendations for these systems for my model. I'm confused. Some folks mention 19 volt, but the 40 amp intelipower only produces 12v?

The battery is already dead, so should I go with 2 12 volts, or 2 6 volt deep cycle?

I don't need top of the line systems, but I do want good quality.

What about a furnace? Apparently, I will blow up my airstream if I turn on the one I have. I like the option of self igniting systems.

I had the international water filter. I don't imagine that's any good by today's standards. Fortunately, I have a plastic tank under the bunk bed, so I don't believe I have to replace that.

Final question on the propane. I am getting new tanks, but the propane tanks that were on there were taken off by the PO, and duct tape over the ends to keep them "clean". Any concerns there?
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Old 02-08-2011, 10:34 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robwok View Post
The systems for my 64 international overlander version. If you look at my other post, you can see I have all the original systems. I plan on keeping the fridge and stove of course, but the other items are hidden. I don't like problems, so I'd rather upgrade than have problems. What are the recommendations for these systems for my model. I'm confused. Some folks mention 19 volt, but the 40 amp intelipower only produces 12v?
The short answer is that the intellipower will work fine with some minor wiring changes.

The "univolt" system that your trailer had predated the availability of silicon rectifiers and therefore powered the trailer on low voltage AC when shore power was available. When the trailer operated on battery power, everything ran on 12 volts DC. Back in the day this was thought to be an improvement over the prior configuration where all the lights had both a 120v and a 12v bulb, and a switch that allowed you to run one or the other depending on whether you had shore power or not.

The 19v AC was used to run the exhaust fan, because its design was such that it needed a little more voltage on AC than DC. With the intellipower you'll run it on 12v DC which will work better than the 19v AC.

Quote:
The battery is already dead, so should I go with 2 12 volts, or 2 6 volt deep cycle?
Whichever fits best and is readily available. There is no magic in one or the other configuration. If you get 12 volt batteries be sure to get deep cycle ones.

Quote:

What about a furnace? Apparently, I will blow up my airstream if I turn on the one I have. I like the option of self igniting systems.
All the new ones have pilotless ignition. Start by looking at the Atwood 8500. If you want quieter you can pay the extra money for the Atwood XT, which is the same furnace with a hi/lo fan and burner setup. Suburban is the other major maker, the difference being that Atwood furnaces have a large outside door and are serviced from outside, while the Suburban furnaces have a small outside air/exhaust port and are serviced from inside the trailer. I have the Atwood 8500 in my trailer and am happy with it.

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I had the international water filter. I don't imagine that's any good by today's standards. Fortunately, I have a plastic tank under the bunk bed, so I don't believe I have to replace that.
If I recall correctly, modern cartridges are available for that filter. A forum search may yield details. They're a part of the historical fabric of the trailer and so you may want to keep it for that reason.

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Final question on the propane. I am getting new tanks, but the propane tanks that were on there were taken off by the PO, and duct tape over the ends to keep them "clean". Any concerns there?
Not specifically due to being disconnected or due to the tape. Whether you want to keep the regulator and hoses depends on age and condition and whether they have the modern acme threads. If they don't have acme threads, you'll at least want to replace the hoses. Regulators are cheap and I would replace one if there is any doubt. They are said to have a service life of 20 years, max, so you could use that as your guide.
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Old 02-08-2011, 11:04 PM   #3
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For me, it's a time issue for questionable items. I didn't even try my original water heater, I just replaced it with a new one. I'm replacing the plumbing and it's almost no more work now to replace the water heater. Same with the cooking stove, I have it out anyway to build new cabinets, so why not just put in a new one?
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Old 02-09-2011, 08:08 AM   #4
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All the new ones have pilotless ignition. Start by looking at the Atwood 8500. If you want quieter you can pay the extra money for the Atwood XT, which is the same furnace with a hi/lo fan and burner setup. Suburban is the other major maker, the difference being that Atwood furnaces have a large outside door and are serviced from outside, while the Suburban furnaces have a small outside air/exhaust port and are serviced from inside the trailer. I have the Atwood 8500 in my trailer and am happy with it.

.
If I am trying to keep my original external vents, is there any recommendation on the two? I'm not concerned with the metal and rivet work (other than determining the right rivets for an outside furnace plate (someone used steel) I'm wondering if there is a better furnace that can be adapted to use the original outside vent.)
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Old 02-09-2011, 12:25 PM   #5
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Electrical? Water heater? Water pump?

Greetings Rob!

Quote:
Originally Posted by robwok View Post
I'm confused. Some folks mention 19 volt, but the 40 amp intelipower only produces 12 volts. The battery is already dead, so should I go with 2 12 volts, or 2 6 volt deep cycle?
It has been nearly 15 years since Ace Fogdall RV replaced the Univolt in my Overlander so my converter isn't an Intellipower, but if I were to be in the position of needing a new converter for the coach today, I would go with the Intellipower with Charge Wizard as it is noted for its efficiency and ability to effectively maintain an expensive deep-cycle RV battery. With a proper functioning converter and a good quality RV deep cycle battery, I believe that you will be satisfied with the performance having a single battery.

I have a slightly different situation in that I had a solar array installed on the foof of my Overlander several years ago along with three AGM batteries and a premium power inverter charger. The batteries are now over seven years old and they still test out to be in very good condition.

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What about a furnace? Apparently, I will blow up my airstream if I turn on the one I have. I like the option of self igniting systems.
Suburban furnaces are among the industry standards for RV funaces. Ten years ago, I had a 30,000 BTU Suburban Furnace installed in my Overlander -- the closest model today can be seen at the following link. I have been very happy with this furnace and even lived in the trailer through Thanksgiving in the Quad Cities of IL one year without ever feeling the need for more heat than this furnace could provide. To me, the luxury of the automatic electronic ignition cannot be surpassed. I know that I really miss the automatic ignition when I travel in my Minuet as it still has its original Suburban manual pilot furnace.

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Originally Posted by robwok View Post
I had the international water filter. I don't imagine that's any good by today's standards. Fortunately, I have a plastic tank under the bunk bed, so I don't believe I have to replace that.
Actually, the original Airstream water filter is not all that bad by today's standards. It is still possible to purchase the new elements from most Airstream dealers. The actual element uses the same technology as today's filters. It is possible to hook up a modern filter (concealed under the the cabinet) that will provide filtered water to the special filtered water faucet.

The plastic fresh water tank is very durable, but they do suffer from age/stress cracks so it is quite advisable to monitor the tank closely. Mine started cracking along the mold mark that runs along the top of the tank -- then splits began forming from the openings in the mold mark. The tank is a fairly common size and shape so it isn't particularly expensive to replace - - a very similar tank is utilized in some of the current Airstreas.

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Final question on the propane. I am getting new tanks, but the propane tanks that were on there were taken off by the PO, and duct tape over the ends to keep them "clean". Any concerns there?
My suggestion would be to purchase a new dual-stage, automatic switch-over regulator with the modern hand-twist connectors. You will definitely quickly learn to enjoy the convenience of not needing the heavy-duty, knuckle-busting wrench to remove the propane line when the tank needs to be refilled. Both of my coaches have been through this conversion, and it is another of those convenience items that make camping so much more pleasurable.

Once the LP is reconnected, the entire LP system should be inspected for leaks as well as problematic appliances. There are two camps when it comes to this type of work - - I always seek out a well-qualified technician for the inspection while others are totally satisfied with the do-it-yourself approach.

Good luck with your updates!

Kevin
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1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 02-09-2011, 12:39 PM   #6
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Electrical? Water heater? Water pump?

Greetings Rob!

Quote:
Originally Posted by robwok View Post
If I am trying to keep my original external vents, is there any recommendation on the two? I'm not concerned with the metal and rivet work (other than determining the right rivets for an outside furnace plate (someone used steel) I'm wondering if there is a better furnace that can be adapted to use the original outside vent.)
I haven't heard of one model being easier to adapt our original vent covers to than another, but any openings in the skin should be filled in with aluminum of the same quality as your coach's sking utilizing Olympic style rivets. The original vent covers will disguise the opening as long as the patches are carefully cut and attached. The Suburban water heater will be somewhat smaller if you go with the six gallon unit while the ten gallon unit will be much closer to the size of the original if a bit costlier. The Suburban furnace that I utilized on my coach will leave a rather large patch area that can be disguised with the original vent cover -- just after my replacement furnace was installed I had an accident with a campground gatepost that resulted in the replacement of the panel where the furnace is located which completely hid the evidence of the change.

Good luck with your upgrades!

Kevin

P.S.: You can see the outcome of the new furnace and water heater installs on the side of my coach in the photo below:

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1964 Overlander International/1999 GMC K2500 Suburban (7400 VORTEC/4.11 Differentials)
1978 Argosy Minuet 6.0 Metre/1975 Cadillac Eldorado Convertible (8.2 Liter V8/2.70 Final Drive)
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Old 02-09-2011, 12:53 PM   #7
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wow, I like the new panel covering up the furnace exhaust. That is really clean. Also less likely to tear something off if you happen to get to close to a roadside obstacle.
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