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Old 12-08-2005, 07:02 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by flyfisher
If you leave the pump turned on for some length of time without any water in the holding tank will this hurt the pump?

I wonder why Airstream doesn't build them with lighted switches, or have the switches separate?

John
The modern pumps all advertise that they can be run dry without harm, but it can't be beneficial since they could easily run for hours or days if accidentally turned on. Just as bad is the possibility of running the batteries flat which degrades future performance of the batteries.

In a 3-way circuit, lighting the switch in the bathroom would require running a separate wire back from the galley switch to that light. Lighting the galley switch would be a lot easier (I just did it yesterday on mine), but the 3-rd party control panel that contains the switch has no provision for lighting Airstream would have to negotiate a lighted switch with MicroPulse, the panel maker.
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Old 12-08-2005, 07:07 PM   #44
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Here's what my panel looks like with the green LED installed. This is photoshopped picture from the manual since my trailer is 10 cold miles away at the moment. The result looks just like MicroPulse had built the panel that way. Cost, about $2.
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Old 12-08-2005, 09:28 PM   #45
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John,
What keeps the LED from burning out? Most LED's run at 3.6V.
Does it have a resistor in line already?
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Old 12-08-2005, 10:21 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by uwe
John,
What keeps the LED from burning out? Most LED's run at 3.6V.
Does it have a resistor in line already?
Apparently there is a resistor built in since these LEDs are meant to be wired directly to 12V according to the package.

It is too bright, though, and I am goint to add more resistance when I get time.
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Old 12-13-2005, 12:05 PM   #47
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Ready to install more LEDs

Quote:
Originally Posted by uwe
John,
What keeps the LED from burning out? Most LED's run at 3.6V.
Does it have a resistor in line already?
I went through my parts box, testing different resistor valuess using my fully charged 12v drill battery for power. When the trailer is on AC power, the LEDs would be a little bit brighter than the battery, but this gave me an idea of the range of resistor values needed.

I was amazed at the wide range of resistance required ro make an appreciable difference in the LED brightness. I finally settled on 22k for the LEDs I will install by the outside light switches by the door. This value gives a fairly bright light and I want these telltales noticed.

I will use 69K for the LED on the control panel. I want that one to be fairly noticeable so that we don't leave the water pump on accidentally, but it should not glare right in the eyes of someone working at the counter.

For a bit dimmer LED, I found that 120K is bright enough for a switch telltale, but is not distracting.
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Old 12-13-2005, 03:53 PM   #48
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LED installation for outside lights

Just got back from installing telltale LEDs on my step and patio light switches. Here are some "How-to" photos.

The first photo shows how I marked for the LED positions. I laid a straightedge along the switch plate edge for the vertical line.

The second photo is the holes drilled (9/32") and the switch pulled out to expose the wires.

I cut the switched wires and reatteched them with a yellow crimp connector with the tiny (22AWG) wires from the LED included in the connection.

I needed only one resistor since both lights can not be on simultaneously. I tied the black wites from both LEDs together and crimped just one resistor in the common ground wire to both LEDs

The hardest part of the job was finding a place to ground the LEDs since there is no ground wire in the area of the switches. I solved this by snaking a ground wire behind the Corean top and running it behind the trim over to the door. There, I removed the trim piece temporarily and installed a screw behind the trim to ground the LEDs. The wire routing is shown in the photo. The plastic trim made a perfect cableway.

Last, is a photo of the finished product with one of the LEDs on. They show up well in the daytime.

To me the switch is designed upside down; when the switch is up, the lower (step) light is on and vice versa. I wired the LEDs so thet the upper LED is associated with the upper light and the lower LED with the step light. That seemed more reasonable.
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Old 12-14-2005, 09:22 AM   #49
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John, great work and photos. On a related thread, I posted the following:
"I'm using Radio Shack LEDS (about $2) for this task. I need to tap into the switched power male terminal of each rocker switch. An easy way to do this is to convert the single male spade switched power terminal on the back of the rocker switch to a double male spade terminal. The original switched power wire goes back on one spade, and the red wire to the LED goes on the other spade. The black wire on the LED goes to a convenient ground. It took some time to locate a supplier of the spade adapters, but I eventually found a pack of 15 at NAPA, part# 784571, "1 female to 2 male adapters" for a couple of dollars. If you can't find a supplier, I have ten I will probably never use, so PM me with your address and I'll post a couple to the first five respondents."
On my trailer I can pick up the grounds for the furnace by dropping wires through the switch holes, down the back of the stove and reaching through from the low acess panel to the furnace.
Nick.
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Old 12-14-2005, 10:06 AM   #50
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On my trailer I can pick up the grounds for the furnace by dropping wires through the switch holes, down the back of the stove and reaching through from the low acess panel to the furnace.
Things apparently change as the years go by. The furnace is smaller now and there is no access at all below my switches. The metal trim along the door frame came off very easily with 5 screws and my ground wire is totally hidden behind it and the horizontal plastic trim.

I prefer my method of attaching the LED wires as it leaves no exposed voltage-carrying metal parts. I simply cut the #12 wires and install a yellow splice connector with the little LED wire included in one side of the splice.
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Old 12-21-2005, 01:23 PM   #51
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More LEDs

I installed green LEDs from Radio Shack as pilot lights for my electric and propane water heater switches. In retrospect, I wish I had used the lights from Pep Boys with longer wires even though I had to supply my own dropping resistors. Splices will not go through the 3/16" holes required to mount the LEDs, so I had to crimp connectors on in very close quarters.

The result looks nice and will make it possible at a glance to know the status of the water heater. I used low-power LEDs so that the bathroom will not be excessively lighted at night.
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Old 12-23-2005, 09:30 PM   #52
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John, and others,

This is a fantastic discussion! I will put some of these projects on the list for our '05 31' Classic. Those indicator LEDs are a good idea.

I am going to study your adaptations to the bedroom storage area. Could get better use of space there.

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Old 12-23-2005, 11:38 PM   #53
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John, and others,
I am going to study your adaptations to the bedroom storage area. Could get better use of space there.

Dwight
Nebraska
If you need additional photos, diagrams, or explanations, please ask. I'm at the trailer at least weekly and can take more photos.
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Old 12-30-2005, 12:48 PM   #54
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Linen Closet

The one thing that I envy in my friend's Classic 31 is that he has a linen closet. On the other hand, we have over twice the wardrobe space that we had in the Classic 25 and the hanging shirt locker in the bedroom is really too narrow to be of much use.

As of this morning, the clothes rod is gone and there are two nice, roomy shelves installed. The shelves are birch plywood and the shelf fronts are nicely trimmed with black molding from McMaster-Carr. Each shelf is suspended side and rear with "F-shaped" plastic molding from Home Depot with eight 3/8" screws into side and rear walls. It is very tight working in the cabinet with one hand, so I prepared in advance several 1' and a 2' pieces of scrap wood to insure that each shelf ended up level all around.

I kept the shelf ends about 6" back into the cabinet and installed a clothes hook near the top front on both sides. This allows us to hang our pajamas out of sight during the day.
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Old 12-30-2005, 01:11 PM   #55
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More outlets

I like to keep the neon AC phase monitor and my analog voltmeter plugged in at all times. This caused some juggling whenever we needed the coffee maker, ceramic heater, toaster, or similar AC items.

I pulled out the RV-type outlet by the entry door and found there was plenty of clearance for a 4" square box with two dual outlets. Despite what the wiring diagram showed, there was only a single wire to contend with.

I bought a 4"-square electrical "remodel" box, two dual outlets, and a cover plate. I used the outlet to power my saber saw, then shut off the breaker, verified with the neon monitor that power was off, and swapped the old outlet for the new pair. Typically, Airstream leaves plenty of slack in the wiring which makes changes easier.

The result looks great and the monitors now have a permanent home.
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Old 12-30-2005, 01:35 PM   #56
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One more addition

I often use my 12v vacuum in the trailer and I find that the cigarette-lighter type outlets on the TV plates are not at convenient locations and they are too tight to easily accommodate the plug on the vacuum.

I found easy to reach 12v wires under the pantry and under the curbside wardrobe. I bought two 12v sockets in the marine department at a local store. The sockets have rubber covers that protect them when not in use. Some yellow inline connectors, a little drilling, and I now have two 12v sockets near floor level. From them I can easily vacuum anywhere in the trailer.
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