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Old 11-10-2006, 01:45 PM   #1
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1985 34.5' Airstream 345
Fishers , Indiana
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 43
30A Upgrade to 30A + 20A

Many of us have wanted to run both the front and rear AC units at the same time when plugged into the campground electric power. Ever wondered why we can run both AC units when we are running the GenSet but not when plugged into 30A service. That is because the generator produces more power than the standard 30A electric service. Upgrading your AS 30A service to 50A, like most new class A motorhomes, is possible but requires significant cost and modification.

We solved this problem with an inexpensive upgrade (< $100) from Power Solutions, 704-398-0996 called "Dual Power Adaptor" (see installation drawing below). Basically this is a junction box mounted in the generator compartment that allows an additional standard 20A cord to be plugged into electrical service along with the 30A cord. Once plugged in, the rear AC is no longer controlled by the rotary selector switch above the stove and is powered by the new 20A service. Everything works normally when the 20A service is not plugged in.

A scan of the AS Generator Switch-Over Relay diagram (with added notes) taken from the AS MH Manual and a hand drawing of how I wired our Dual Power are both attached. I have wired both our current 345 and the one owned by Robfike as described. Both worked great. We have found that most every place we go that has 30A service also has an extra 20A standard plug available.

Hope this helps you stay cool on those very hot summer days.
Wayne
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Old 11-11-2006, 11:35 AM   #2
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1982 28' Airstream 280
Norfolk , Virginia
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Wayne,

The only problem I see with this solution is that you could be overloading the feed line. If who ever put in the electrical system pulled a single number 10 wire to the box, and then connected both the 20A and the 30A recepticles to that one wire, then you could be drawing too much current. Many parks that are not wired for 50A service did it this way because it was cheaper.

Just a thought.

Steve
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Old 11-12-2006, 03:25 PM   #3
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1985 34.5' Airstream 345
Fishers , Indiana
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I would not suggest this for use at home for use with a single 110V #10 line. It would not carry 50A. However, it is not a problem at RV parks that have the 20A and 30A plugs since they would not be on a single #10 110V load line. That would not be up to code. We also carry a 50A splitter cord that divides a 50A 220V plug into two 30A 110V plugs. This works great at the newer RV parks that provide 50A.
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Old 11-13-2006, 12:42 PM   #4
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1982 28' Airstream 280
Norfolk , Virginia
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Wayne,

I wonder how many of the older places are up to code? I am really thinking of the "Ma and Pa" camp grounds where they do a lot of the work themselves. We use more and more power, and this puts a lot of stress on the park grid. This leads to "brown out" conditions in more than a few of the places I have been in. This can really cause problems with modern circuit boards, computers, etc.

Converting to a 50A system would be quite expensive and lead to more consumption. But the parks have to keep up with demand. A vicious circle.

Steve
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Old 11-13-2006, 06:16 PM   #5
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1985 34.5' Airstream 345
Fishers , Indiana
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I hope the "Ma and Pa" RV parks do keep upgrading their electric services so we can continue to use them. We often prefer them to many of the newer RV parks. We have found RV parks in AZ that would not let us camp since our 345 was considered to OLD to be parked next to their other customers.
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Old 11-13-2006, 07:33 PM   #6
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1991 35' Airstream 350
Windsor , North Carolina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne Olson
I hope the "Ma and Pa" RV parks do keep upgrading their electric services so we can continue to use them. We often prefer them to many of the newer RV parks. We have found RV parks in AZ that would not let us camp since our 345 was considered to OLD to be parked next to their other customers.
I've had the same problem at marinas. Apparently my "Classic Plastic" sailboat was not upscale enough--although the stuff they usually cater to is unsafe out of sight of land, it costs more in today's inflated dollars. I can safely take my 35 year old boat across any ice free ocean on the planet. One has been around the world. There is nothing quite so useful as proven technology. Classic Airstreams are better, pound for pound and dollar for dollar of original cost, than ANYTHING produced today.

Best to all,

Rob
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Old 11-14-2006, 11:02 AM   #7
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Amen, Rob

Steve
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Old 11-22-2006, 06:30 PM   #8
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1986 34.5' Airstream 345
choctaw , Oklahoma
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I put a double pole double throw 30A switch (under the front the dinette seat in my 345) between the rear A/C and the auto change over switch to the generator. Then run a #10 wire under the frig and back to a breaker box, then to a 30A plug in the hose-electric cord compartment. Flip the switch up and I'm going to the second 'new' plug; flip switch down, and I go to the generator/panel. If the park don't have two 30A plugs, I have a double 15A adapter and I've never had a problem if they're main is more then 30A.
mel
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Old 11-22-2006, 06:54 PM   #9
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Rob,

What kind of sailboat do you have? A buddy of mine out in Everett, Washington, had a really old sailboat, like a 1967 model. It was fiberglass. According to him, it was one of the first fiberglass boats, and not being familiar with the material yet, they built the laminations really heavy. It was a very stoutly built boat. Slow, but well built. Just wondering what kind of boat(s) you have that have crossed the globe. That's pretty cool.

I like the racing trimarans, like made by Jeaneau, that they single hand across the Atlantic. The 40 knot jobs. They have no room, and you don't want to capsize one, but skirt the edge of the hurricane and they'll fly. Pretty cool how they do the bubble canopies and have the crank helm under it. Like a giant fighter cockpit.
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Old 12-10-2006, 10:26 AM   #10
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
boca raton , Florida
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Install of Power Solutions to run buth ac's

I installed the same system to my 89 345. Had no problems. The system is run through an additional power cord only to run the second air unit as when the generator is running. You do not plug to a 50amp system. Your main 30A system remains the same and the additional cord feeds 20A to the air circut only. If installing yourself, Power Solutions is more then happy to help on the phone.
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Old 12-12-2006, 04:51 PM   #11
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Portland , Oregon
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Thanks Wayne. Great idea, and great write up.

I can imagine using this at my house even. Luckily I get to store my airstream right next to my house, and I've run the AC while I'm loading up for the weekend. Actually my house doesn't have AC and it would be fun to hang out in the MoHo on that one week of scorcher days we get a year up here in the PNW.

-Kevin
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