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Old 01-10-2011, 12:33 PM   #1
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1982 28' Airstream 280
Venice , California
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AS280 - Mystery Button on Dash

Hey everyone,

I just pulled Athena (82/3 AS 280) back out of storage and am starting to take on some more projects. So you'll likely have another active poster back on the list again!

Speaking of lists, first on mine is my dash. It's a zoo of bad wiring and inoperability. But there's one mystery that's been plaguing me since I first acquired her.

What in tarnation is this mystery button for? It theoretically goes into the dash right next to the ignition. It depresses like a momentary switch and does not lock. It also does not rotate. And for the record, it is NOT the battery combiner starter assist button. That is to the left of the steering column and still working perfectly.

I'm perplexed. Any ideas??

/dalefox
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Old 01-10-2011, 02:19 PM   #2
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1982 28' Airstream 280
Port Angeles , Washington
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I have the same button and have no clue what it does. A couple of years ago when I first got the coach I was pressing buttons and flipping switches and I thought I found two horns but it only happened once and I have never found it again. For now there are too many other things to worry about but if you find an answer i'll be watching.

Cheers, Dan
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Old 01-10-2011, 03:01 PM   #3
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That's easy........that's the button for the mother-in-law INJECTION SEAT.
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Old 01-10-2011, 03:26 PM   #4
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My MH has a mother-in-law ejection seat. However, that button works the smoke screen.
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Old 01-10-2011, 03:37 PM   #5
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1984 34.5' Airstream 345
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Mine has a hole, and looks like the was something there....
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Old 01-10-2011, 03:47 PM   #6
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Just a guess....Could it be the windshield washer control. I have seen older trucks with seperate washer controllers. As far as the Mother-in-law ejection seat, I thought it was a large red button that you used your fist or palm of your hand to operate by striking it real hard. Maybe the red button has fallen off and explains why this switch is no longer in the dash!

Safe Travels!!!
Tim
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Old 01-10-2011, 04:15 PM   #7
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1982 28' Airstream 280
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Originally Posted by MrRivet View Post
Just a guess....Could it be the windshield washer control. I have seen older trucks with seperate washer controllers. As far as the Mother-in-law ejection seat, I thought it was a large red button that you used your fist or palm of your hand to operate by striking it real hard. Maybe the red button has fallen off and explains why this switch is no longer in the dash!

Safe Travels!!!
Tim
Windshield washer is on the wiper knob. I don't think the red button fell off, where it's located it would be too difficult to get a good hit with your fist or palm.

By the way does anybody have two horns? My steering wheel button operates the air horns. I would think there ought to be a normal electric horn somewhere.

Cheers, Dan
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Old 01-10-2011, 04:20 PM   #8
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Sorry, but is the '82 280 a diesel? Could be a starting assist device of some type.

Or a diesel fuel shut off.
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Old 01-10-2011, 04:38 PM   #9
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Not a diesel, just an ordinary gas engine. And speaking of "gas engines", thanks for all the mother in law humor!

I hadn't thought of this, but a windshield washer control is possible. My vehicle has twin wiper controls, so it's possible they also broke off the washer into a separate button. Although why in the world would it have such a large diameter primary cable and two other electrical connectors as well??

Any other ideas?
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Old 01-10-2011, 04:42 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by dalefox View Post
Not a diesel, just an ordinary gas engine. And speaking of "gas engines", thanks for all the mother in law humor!

I hadn't thought of this, but a windshield washer control is possible. My vehicle has twin wiper controls, so it's possible they also broke off the washer into a separate button. Although why in the world would it have such a large diameter primary cable and two other electrical connectors as well??

Any other ideas?
If its got a heavy cable, it probably worked a 12 volt compressor for a air horn. Just MHO. Sal.
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Old 01-10-2011, 05:49 PM   #11
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I spent some time looking thru the owners and service manual.... even tried to trace it based on the wire color... all for nothing!
I want to know too!
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Old 01-10-2011, 05:56 PM   #12
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Dalefox,
Is the thicker black line electrical cable or a tube for air or water(niether makes sense to me cos its going only one way)?
Maybe the green and purple cables are for lighting the switch?
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Old 01-10-2011, 06:07 PM   #13
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I thought the same thing: perhaps the two smaller wires are simply for lighting control. I haven't checked carefully on the primary cable to see if it is pneumatic, electric or mechanical. I'll stop by storage tomorrow and see if I can dig up more clues!
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Old 01-10-2011, 06:46 PM   #14
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It looks like the disengage switch for the cruse control. Look above the brake pedal for any remains of a bracket that may have mounted this combination electrical/vaccume switch.
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