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Old 05-08-2016, 12:18 AM   #1
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Inverter and Solar upgrade

Ordered a bunch of magnum stuff. Forgot to get the battery temperature sensor.

The new inverted is much bigger than my old one that sits behind the kick board. I am planning on putting the new one in the bottom of my forward cabinet, and removing the bottom shelf to replace with a louvered vent. Sadly, when I went to remove the small cabinet it seemed fastened to the dash. I verified no screws are present, but it is held fast. I was going to remove it, place the inverter on the floor, slide it towards the front, then slide the cabinet until both were situated to ensure minimal impact to the cabinet. Because I cannot remove the cabinet I must modify the cabinet to allow reciept of the inverter. Looks like I will have to sawzall the bottom cross piece flush with the sides of the drawer above. This will allow me to slide the inverted in through the bottom. Then the wiring fun begins.

Once the new inverter/charger is in and hooked up, I will remove the old converter charger and put the solar charge controller in its place.
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Old 05-08-2016, 06:41 AM   #2
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There some access able screws in the back base of the center cabinet. It comes out easily after you find then.
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Old 05-08-2016, 11:26 AM   #3
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Kota,

I removed all the screws at the base. The base will slide forward, but the dash comes with it. All the screws in the top compartment pointing towards the front have been removed. The ABS of the dash is is acting like it is glued to the cabinet. Will try again today.
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Old 05-08-2016, 01:04 PM   #4
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I took mine out as well...when all the nasty long screws are removed, just lift up a little on the dashboard to take the pressure off and it will slide out...work it out one side at a time if it's tight.

I was thinking of using the same location.

The next challenge I found- the wires going to the converter run back under the dash towards the drivers side and I have not been able to track them. I think the white is just grounded to the frame somewhere. They are also not large enough to power the inverter, so it may be best to simply cap them off, run a new heavy gauge wire directly to the battery terminals.

The AC romex also runs under the dash towards the drivers side. There is probably enough wire to remove the plug and pull it back and wire it directly to the input terminal on the inverter. Figuring out how to wire the inverter output back to the AC breaker panel will be fun.
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Old 05-08-2016, 05:12 PM   #5
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So I was not crazy, there were three screws in the cabinet that held it to the dash without access anywhere. I used a pry bar to separate them from the ABS plastic, and replaced after. Right now the inverter is placed.

For wiring, the magnum has an automatic transfer switch built in, so I planned to disconnect the shore power from the ATS at the rear of the coach, run the line up to the front, through the access in the hood, then run it back from the inverter to the ATS in the back. Only concern I have is what happens when the inverter is providing 120VAC and the generator kicks on. I also considered disconnecting from the downstream side of the ATS in the rear, running the power first to the inverter, then to the downstream line. Thoughts?
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Old 05-08-2016, 06:32 PM   #6
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Vycan,

Magnum includes the battery temp sensor in every new inverter/charger. It should have been packaged with the terminal covers and AC access panel.


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Old 05-08-2016, 06:36 PM   #7
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Lew,

It sure was, I found it this morning when I was fitting the inverter, forgot to update. Great catch!
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Old 05-08-2016, 09:36 PM   #8
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You have a 60 amp transfer switch, so you could run direct from your shore power input. Keep wire size in mind if you do it this way as you will be running both AC units through the inverter- or would you? The wire between your batteries should be the same size as your inverter DC wire as well.
I don't have a proper single line diagram of my 50 amp service wiring, and have not figured this out yet. I have my inverter wired up as a charger so far...
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Old 05-09-2016, 08:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vycan View Post
So I was not crazy, there were three screws in the cabinet that held it to the dash without access anywhere. I used a pry bar to separate them from the ABS plastic, and replaced after. Right now the inverter is placed.

For wiring, the magnum has an automatic transfer switch built in, so I planned to disconnect the shore power from the ATS at the rear of the coach, run the line up to the front, through the access in the hood, then run it back from the inverter to the ATS in the back. Only concern I have is what happens when the inverter is providing 120VAC and the generator kicks on. I also considered disconnecting from the downstream side of the ATS in the rear, running the power first to the inverter, then to the downstream line. Thoughts?
Vican,

That's not exactly how it should be done. The inverter 120VAC input should come directly from a dedicated 30 amp breaker in your main panel. The inverter's output should then go into a sub panel containing all of the circuits that you want to operate from the inverter while off-grid. The transfer switch in the Magnum is designed to either 'pass-thru' 120VAC into the sub panel when shore power is present or provide 120VAC to the sub panel circuits when using the inverter/battery combination when off-grid.

The 120VAC input to your main panel should be the same; from your coach transfer switch! This is where it selects either shore input OR generator. This should not be changed.

PM me if you have more specific questions.

You will also find some good working block diagrams in the Magnum manual.
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Old 05-09-2016, 07:22 PM   #10
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So my coach has two ATS's both are 30amp (one main, and one rear AC) and I suspect it was done that way because it was wired for 30amp service. Understanding it should have a dedicated 30amp surge protector, but the ATS is for 30amp service, and I have a surge protector at the plug in to external power, that is why I am running the electric this way.
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Old 05-10-2016, 12:41 AM   #11
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Interesting, I think I have a 50 amp service, I have three ATS's in the back and I think I can run both AC units at one time from shore power. ..I don't have a selector switch. Luckily you have an accurate wiring diagram. I think you have your wiring figured out correctly. If you running the inverter and the generator kicks on automatically your wiring would work IF the inverter switched off and went back to transfer/charge mode. Call Magnum.
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Old 05-10-2016, 01:51 PM   #12
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Inverter and Solar upgrade

Interesting!

On most 50 amp service RVs that I have worked on, there is a single 50 amp transfer switch compromised of a ground, neutral and 2 hot legs a 120 VAC.

Don't know why Airstream felt the need for 3 transfer switches, as the sole function of the transfer switch us to isolate the shore power from generator power so they both can't reach your breaker box simultaneously.

But then, Airstream seems to go their own way when it comes to electricity anyway.


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Old 05-29-2016, 10:24 PM   #13
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Actually hooked up the inverter/charger this weekend. Ran the AC as planned from the automatic transfer switch to the inverter, and back for the coach. The 3/000 wire for the 3ft of travel to the batteries was an absolute PITA! Also re-did the series cable in 3/000 so the entire system can withstand the draw of the inverter.

In the pictures are the evolution of placements. In sequence: 1. AC in, with position of access holes and grommets in place. 2. AC in with Shunt mounted. 3. AC in with AC out, DC cables ran, removed shunt and replaced with battery monitor. Last shows the inverter in its resting place with shunt in the top right.

Also installed but w/o pics: 1. Magnum remote, 2. Solar charge controller. The solar charge controller is in the position of the old charger, and is at a skewed angle due to me not wanting to drill any more holes in the compartment.

Essentially used the left mounting bar for the charger anchored it only on the bottom, and rotated about that bottom mounting point until the top came close enough to the upper right anchor to place the solar controller mounting block. Then placed the solar charge controller on the block. Also used the bottom anchor of the left mounting bar for the surface mount 30A circuit breaker. Looks a bit whonky, but all is secure and grounded. Will post pics when i get a chance.

The Solar charge controller it not connected. As with the inverter, I like to place things and think about the install, running cables, and determine if what "seemed like a good idea at the time" will actually be a good idea.

Still to do:
1. Mount 500W of solar panels on the roof
2. Wire the solar connections through the coach
3. Make a junction box for the solar power
4. Connect the solar to the MPPT Solar Charge Controller
5. Connect the Solar Charge Controller to the batteries

Once done my summer electric upgrades will be complete. Then off to Newfoundland!
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Old 05-30-2016, 10:33 PM   #14
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Looking good! So you ran two new AC lines front to back? What wire did you use?
If I understand correctly what you did- you took out the wires that ran from the coach side of the transfer switch to the AC panel and ran new wires from the terminals to the inverter, then back down from the inverter and tied into the wires that run to the AC panel? Sounds like a solid plan.

I need to spend some more time figuring my system out. My MS 2012 is not rated for 50 amps, but I suspect this is not a problem because I think one of the legs probably goes directly to one of the AC units. Do you have a switch for front or rear AC when running on shore power?
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