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Old 10-30-2013, 06:24 AM   #15
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Tiato, looks like great work! As you work out the details on your final install, if you can make a small run or even just build a few for forum members by hand I would be very interested. I'm just in the planning stags of a solar upgrade, I will start accumulating parts soon.
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Old 03-08-2014, 07:38 PM   #16
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Solar upgrade with Lewster...I traveled down to Marco Island to see Lewster before he does his annual migration to Oregon. From the picture, you might think we started drinking while doing the upgrade. He has been at it for two days. Lewster assures me that it will all come together tomorrow. The overall specs for the system is 300 watts of solar power and over 400 A/h of battery storage. Thought some of you might enjoy seeing the disaster in the back of my AI. Click image for larger version

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Old 03-08-2014, 08:23 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by K9CarCrate View Post
Solar upgrade with Lewster...I traveled down to Marco Island to see Lewster before he does his annual migration to Oregon. From the picture, you might think we started drinking while doing the upgrade. He has been at it for two days. Lewster assures me that it will all come together tomorrow. The overall specs for the system is 300 watts of solar power and over 400 A/h of battery storage. Thought some of you might enjoy seeing the disaster in the back of my AI.
Lewster's mess still looks all organized and neat.
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:53 PM   #18
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It's actually a lot better than it looks!

It will all come together tomorrow when miles and miles (actually close to 100 feet) of 2/0 cable, 10/3 AC marine cable, 6/2 solar wire, communication cables and battery temperature sensors all get placed and connected where they have to be.

As of today, the roof is done with 3 GS-100 panels bonded and sealed to the roof (NO HOLES!) and wired into the combiner box (bonded to the roof (NO HOLES!) and one roof access hole for the solar 6/2 cable drilled, covered and filled with SikFlex 221 sealant.

The new Magnum ME-RC remote and the Blue Sky IPN remote have been cut into the main control panel, and all of that wiring had been connected and pulled thru and behind the upper cabinets and brought to the rear floor.

Tomorrow gets the 4 new Lifeline GPL-4CT batteries, new Magnum MS-2012 inverter/charger, new auxiliary 120VAC main breaker box and solar controller connections. The existing 120VAC breaker box will now be operated from the inverter, with the exception of the roof A/C. Then clean, wire loom, wire tie and route all cables.

Stay tuned for the end results!
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Old 03-09-2014, 10:49 AM   #19
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I hope we see more pictures of this great upgrade.
Thanks
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Old 03-10-2014, 12:13 AM   #20
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Looks like a great great upgrade. Looking forward to more info and photos.
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Old 03-10-2014, 09:30 PM   #21
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As promised……………here they are……………….

Things DO look a bit better now………………….no?
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Old 03-11-2014, 10:54 AM   #22
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Great job -- this is the setup Airstream should be providing in the Interstate. I have been planning a similar setup, but want to try mounting the batteries under the floor. Then I could mount larger inverter inside the battery box. Of course getting the batteries under van is a challenge. I've also considered removing the spare as Advanced RV does.

How did you wire in the additional AC panel to power everything but the AC? Does this retain the PCI AC loads heading system installed by Airstream?
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Old 03-11-2014, 11:57 AM   #23
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The center photo is the new main breaker box that houses the A/C circuit. The Airstream provided current monitor still works, but without the A/C draw.

I would not mont an inverter in the old battery box. Wiring it would be a nightmare and it would not provide sufficient ventilation.
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Old 03-11-2014, 01:56 PM   #24
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Ok - thanks Lew. I could also just remove the original battery box and put larger inverter in its place. My goal is to retain the existing interior storage space.

I've got several ideas to get batteries under van and bring cable up through same hole in floor under battery box where power cable from generator is located. That will have to be my Fall project since I'm heading to Alaska this summer right after I finish adding the extra solar to the van.

I'm in New Mexico now heading back home to Maryland. Needed to warm up a bit.

BTW - I mistyped the "PCI AC load shedding", in last post, spell checking got me. But you got the message.

Thanks again!
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Old 03-12-2014, 12:00 AM   #25
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The solar upgrade is finished and I cannot say enough about Lewster's professional install capabilities and innovative ideas. Here's some more Click image for larger version

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ID:	207280views. The solar panels can be manually angled to maximize solar power while stationary. We got a little innovative by mounting the tv antenna on top of the air conditioner cover. The new control panels are first rate and provide a lot more information regarding battery status, charge/discharge rates, battery temp sensors, etc... Lewster also changed the wiring so that I cannot accidentally turn on AC while on battery power alone. Although I intend to turn over the engine and every two weeks, Lewster also set up the wiring to eliminate parasitic draws with a complete shutoff/yet batteries will continue to charge. I also added a 1.7 cuft. Freezer in the back on the passenger side. I'm really pleased with this Click image for larger version

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Old 03-12-2014, 11:25 AM   #26
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Awesome upgrade! Very nice work by Lewster. Digging the TV antena relocation. Did he have to extend the antenna cable? On my non ext interstate that would open up a much better spot for a second panel than mounting it in front of the air vent. Then again, I dont watch much over the air TV so I may just remove the antenna.
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Old 03-12-2014, 11:57 AM   #27
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Tito, thank you, with regard to the antenna cable it was just a little too short so Lewster added a small addition, but went a step further by heat sealing the connection to prevent any weather corrosion and then wrapped the entire cable with UV conduit.
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Old 03-12-2014, 12:40 PM   #28
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Looks great! You mentioned that you could adjust the panels when stationary but how do you get up there?

Is AS still using the Dometic A/C? The cover is different than mine.
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