Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 09-17-2006, 09:41 PM   #1
Stray
 
1987 32' Excella
1978 28' Argosy 28
Springfield , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 314
'78 Argosy MH-Generator question

My 4KW Onan generator in '78 Argosy MH starts and runs great. Only problem--it doesn't appear to run anything within the coach. I have the 30-amp cord plugged into receptacle within the storage area for cord. Is there another switch that has to be turned on, or do I just have to figure out if I have a broken wire, connection, etc.? I am also looking for service manuals for the '78 Argosy and generator. Thanks, as always, for the great advice.
__________________

__________________
nohillgrish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2006, 10:20 PM   #2
76 Silver Argosy
 
abridges01's Avatar
 
1975 26' Argosy 26
Fallbrook , Southern California
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 85
Send a message via Yahoo to abridges01
Hello Nohillgrish:

Sorry I cannot provide any useful information to your posting, I am in a similar boat so thought I would add to it. The Onan 4.0 BF in my '75 Argosy 26' does not appear to be outputting anything, runs sweet (if a little rich) but no juice at the 35A breaker or anywhere else. Today I checked the brushes - they appear fine - fuses are all OK and so I am now officially mystified as to what to do next.

I have one weekend to find a workable solution before we're off on our inaugural weekend by the beach and I cannot imagine the Missus and two ankle biters doing well with no AC or, Lord forbid, any TV. There's an Onan service center at a local RV dealer, but I am a little wary if they will be able to fix something over 30 years old.

I would be happy to switch out my ageing Onan (only shows 250 hours on the clock) for something newer (and hopefully smaller, more efficient and quieter – who says you can’t have it all?) if only I could find something that would slot into the existing enclosure (approximately 21” wide, by 21” tall by 22” deep). Am I dreaming or do such beasts really exist, and if so, should I ready my first born for the exchange?

Thanks you all, as ever your advice is very much appreciated.

Cheers,

Andrew
__________________

__________________
1975 26' Silver Argosy MH: Ethyl the Never Ready!
Fallbrook, Southern California

"Experience is something you never have... until just after you need it!"
abridges01 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2006, 10:24 PM   #3
4 Rivet Member
 
bobchevy89's Avatar
 
1977 24' Argosy 24
Inverness , Florida
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 264
you can get a owners or service manual from
Helen Davia Secretarial Ser.
PO BOX 484
Sidney Oh.45365
Ph#937-492-8885
runs about $35.00
hope that this helps. call her first..
Bob
__________________
bobchevy89 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-18-2006, 10:21 PM   #4
Stray
 
1987 32' Excella
1978 28' Argosy 28
Springfield , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 314
Andrew,
Thanks for your response. Sorry for your similiar question/problem, but glad to know I'm not drifting on this one by myself. Hope you have a better inaugural weekend than I had Labor Day Weedend. I did have shore power at campsite, and my dash a/c worked fine for the short trip. So, the generator for a/c wasn't a problem. However, turned out we had gas leaks at the furnace, hot water heater and a couple other places. To make things worse, we turned roof vents on without opening windows or doors to remove the gas and pulled tank odors into the coach that stayed around for awhile (3-4 days). Should have waited until I had opportunity to check things out a little more (I had only had it a week), but thought the short trip would be good opportunity to see what worked and what didn't. The wife moved all camping accessories back into the Excella when we returned home. Suttle message but, since I like the Argosy MH so much, it just made me more determined to get things fixed so we could give it a fair shake. Spent most of the afternoon last Saturday at Colaw's RV Salvage picking up the needed supplies/parts. May I suggest you get a combination carbon monoxide/gas monitor for your rig, if you don't already have it. I picked up a pretty good one at local hardware store that works on AC and 9V battery for about $35 (I think the name was Night Hawk something or other). It has alerted me on a couple of occasions to get more ventilation in the coach (once on my Excella when I was winter dry camping with the catalytic heater on, and Labor Day weekend with gas leaks in the MH). CHEAP INSURANCE!!! Please advise how the trip goes, and if you find an answer on the generator. I have a thing or two to work on before I can get back to the generator, but will likewise post if I run across something helpful.

bobchevy 89,
Thanks for the info on the manuals. Will follow up as suggested.

Thanks
Stray
__________________
nohillgrish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2006, 07:53 AM   #5
Stray
 
1987 32' Excella
1978 28' Argosy 28
Springfield , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 314
Bob,
I ordered manuals yesterday from source you suggested. Thanks again.
Stray
__________________
nohillgrish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2006, 05:32 PM   #6
76 Silver Argosy
 
abridges01's Avatar
 
1975 26' Argosy 26
Fallbrook , Southern California
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 85
Send a message via Yahoo to abridges01
G'day Stray:

Forgive me if I am stating the obvious here, but have you checked the main breakers (mine are in the wardrobe next to the bathroom) or the fuses (under rear dinette seat on my 26')? I also checked the output voltage (apparently 4.5V AC!) on top of the genset against chassis earth.

Brushes should be a good starting point, the documentation i have found indicated if you have more than one inch from the top of the AC brush holder to the top of the brush, they need changng, but as far as I could tell I was close to this, but when I pulled the brushes, they looked clean and appeared to have a lot of meat left on them. On the 4.0BF the brushes are located at the very front of the genset, hidden below two easily removed (and replaced) plastic guards that bear a forward pointing arrow and a legend something along the lines of ‘ENGINE FRONT.’ The brush ‘cages’ are only secured by two slightly tricky to access hex screws. IT is really pretty straight forward to pull them forward from their cage, make sure they have a lot of graphite left and are not badly scored, slide in and out easily, and then replace them. Be sure to make sure the commutator (I think) that the brushes sit up against is not badly scratched before you put them back.

Lastly, when you connect shore power via the cable stowed in rear, do all your DC lights and such work OK? I believe (and everyone please fell free to correct me if I am speaking from the wrong orifice) that the genset’s output passes through the main breaker box in my left hand wardrobe, back to that connector in the power cable stow box, so if shore power works fine, then your problem lies between the genset and connector in the stow box… does this make sense?

Not sure if I am helping here Stray, but you know us newbies have to stick together! Any suggestions for how to check out the propane side of the business? That’s top of my list to tackle this weekend, and you sound like a pro there.

Cheers,

Andrew
__________________
1975 26' Silver Argosy MH: Ethyl the Never Ready!
Fallbrook, Southern California

"Experience is something you never have... until just after you need it!"
abridges01 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-20-2006, 08:54 PM   #7
Stray
 
1987 32' Excella
1978 28' Argosy 28
Springfield , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 314
Evening Andrew,
Thanks for the advice on things to check on the ole' generator. I will have to wait until this weekend to work through your list as I temporarily have the MH in a storage facility (I just didn't have the nerve, or wife's blessing, to try and keep both the trailer and MH in my yard at the same time.

I did check the breaker box in the closet and everything seemed to be alright there. I just remembered last night that I think there is a specific breaker box for the generator in the outside storage compartment right above the generator. That will be the first thing I check to see if by chance the previous owner had turned it off for some reason (I should be so lucky). Everything does work on shore power when plugged in. So, as you suggest, the problem has to be between the gen and plug in cord stow compartment.

Certainly not a pro on the gas situation. However, a quick test is just to use soapy water around all fittings and check for bubbles. After the obvious, I then would have an RV service facility or propane dealer check the lines under pressure to see if you have any "bleed down". A nice thing about these old Argosy's is that the gas lines are all pretty accessable.

Enjoyed the pic's of your rig (I think I saw them on a different thread)--Nice!!! Will try and get up to speed and maybe post a few myself.

Stray
__________________
nohillgrish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-22-2006, 10:05 AM   #8
76 Silver Argosy
 
abridges01's Avatar
 
1975 26' Argosy 26
Fallbrook , Southern California
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 85
Send a message via Yahoo to abridges01
Cheers Stray,

I look forward to your pictures.

You mentioned a "specific breaker box for the generator in the outside storage compartment right above the generator" - where exactly is this? I have a reset button built right on top of the genset - see the little red button top center in the photo below, this is a 35A trip, mine checked out zero Ohms across the two contacts so I assume it's fine. Genset photo below:



Is this the breaker you are referring to or is there another one I have missed?

I probably should have checked this earlier, but what model Onan is it you have? Mine is a 4.0BF 4KW model.

Cheers,

Andrew
__________________
1975 26' Silver Argosy MH: Ethyl the Never Ready!
Fallbrook, Southern California

"Experience is something you never have... until just after you need it!"
abridges01 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-24-2006, 10:44 PM   #9
Stray
 
1987 32' Excella
1978 28' Argosy 28
Springfield , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 314
Andrew,
My gen has the same Model #, etc. as yours, but looks a little different in configuration. I have not found the reset button you pointed out, but I had remembered correctly in that there was a separate breaker box. In mine, I have an outside storage compartment just in front an up from the gen. That storage compartment runs back over the top of gen. It is in this area over the generator that I found a seperate 20 amp fuse box. The switch in fact was off. Turned it on, fired up the gen, and everything worked inside--including the air conditioner. With the "unepected surprises" I've ran into, it was sure nice to have a good one. Spent the rest of the weekend changing out mirrors with much larger ones taken off a wrecked Itasca, and re-plumbing my water pump area to install a fresh water drain and winterizing kit. Progress is slow, but it's coming along. Looking forward to some posts about your first extended trip in the Argosy.
__________________
nohillgrish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2006, 01:11 PM   #10
76 Silver Argosy
 
abridges01's Avatar
 
1975 26' Argosy 26
Fallbrook , Southern California
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 85
Send a message via Yahoo to abridges01
Any chance of a photo of this mystery breaker box Stray? I am so hoping to find something similar on my rig as it sounds way easier than the various options I am currently considering!
__________________
1975 26' Silver Argosy MH: Ethyl the Never Ready!
Fallbrook, Southern California

"Experience is something you never have... until just after you need it!"
abridges01 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2006, 08:57 PM   #11
Stray
 
1987 32' Excella
1978 28' Argosy 28
Springfield , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 314
As I am out of pocket for a few days, will try to work on uploading some photo's this weekend. This generator thing is still intriging to me, even though I was fortunate to get mine functioning properly thru discovery of the separate fuse box. As suggested by bobchevy89 in an earlier post, I ordered reproduction Owner's and Service Manuals on the Argosy. Owner's manual was the '78 and Service manual had both '77 & '78. My rig is titled as a '78 but, according to the info in manual about serial #'s, it was built in '77. Guess this is not uncommon and assume they just started production of '78's sometime in '77. Anyway, the picture of gen in '77 looks more like my unit instead of one shown on '78 model. Neither model, however, shows the separate fuse box I have referenced. Maybe some of our more knowledgable forum members can shed a little light (no pun intended) on this.
Don't know yet if box is labeled correctly, but seems curious to me that a 20-amp fuse would be in line for a 30-amp gen. Assuming the air conditioner pulls 20, that wouldn't seem to leave much for anything else (lights, etc.). I'm probably really showing my ignorance here, but I always seem to learn more when corrected. So, blast away you techno genius'.
Stray
__________________
nohillgrish is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2006, 01:37 PM   #12
76 Silver Argosy
 
abridges01's Avatar
 
1975 26' Argosy 26
Fallbrook , Southern California
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 85
Send a message via Yahoo to abridges01
Service manual for a 1975 Argosy MH?

Thanks Stray:

And thank you Bob, I ordered the users manual for my '75 Argosy MH today (what a wonderful resource, how did you find it?), unfortunately they do not have a service manual available for the '75
Argosy - if anyone else has one I can copy, do please let me know as it could prove invaluable?

Cheers,

Andrew
__________________
1975 26' Silver Argosy MH: Ethyl the Never Ready!
Fallbrook, Southern California

"Experience is something you never have... until just after you need it!"
abridges01 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2006, 02:08 PM   #13
4 Rivet Member
 
bobchevy89's Avatar
 
1977 24' Argosy 24
Inverness , Florida
Join Date: May 2006
Posts: 264
thanks

Hello abridges01 and nohillgrish, glad you got the gen running. I got the address for the manuals here on the forum.I love this place there is a fantastic wealth of knowage here and many great members here to help you out.Also use the search button and you will find a lot of info there.oh by the way thanks for the thanks,makes people feel good....
Bobchevy89
__________________
bobchevy89 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-26-2006, 09:24 PM   #14
Stray
 
1987 32' Excella
1978 28' Argosy 28
Springfield , Missouri
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 314
Andrew,
I'll keep an eye out for you a service manual. In comparing the '77 & '78 in the manual, there are really a lot of similarities between the two years and the different lengths. If you run up against something that a diagram might help with before you find a manual, let me know and I'll see if I can upload or fax you a copy of pages referencing subject matter you need. The fax is a no brainer, but I'll have to get "practiced up" again on the ole scanner, etc. I'll check back on this thread from time to time, or might catch you on another one. Bob sure hit it on the head when he said this forum was a great resource. I've already tackled a few projects I might not have otherwise knowing that others are attempting, and attempting again when they fail, the same types of things. What a rush when something comes together and gives a little more life, and personality, to a rig that some thought was long since dead.
Stray
__________________

__________________
nohillgrish is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Argosy Motorhome Manual & Brochures WANTED Rik Argosy Motorhomes 28 05-22-2017 12:45 PM
Stripping an Argosy CHRIS CANNON Cleaning, Stripping & Polishing 8 05-11-2017 05:42 PM
confused Argosy newbie Dave Cole All Argosy Trailers 23 09-15-2006 10:36 PM
1985 Argosy MH???? ViewRVs Airstream Motorhome Forums 8 03-21-2002 08:39 PM
Argosy Motorhome Owners Manual & Brochures WANTED Rik Airstream Motorhome Forums 5 03-03-2002 12:21 AM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:47 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.