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Old 04-20-2015, 10:44 PM   #1
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1969 21' Globetrotter
Calgary , Alberta
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Univolt problems

Ok. Ok. Ok. I know the first thing you will all say is rip that out and make a nice door stop. I know that. But...this not what I am up for if I can help it. The problem...we sit in trailer for a while and with a few lights on and radio playing. After about an hour it slowly gets dimmer and dimmer. Radio gets quiet. This all while being plugged in to shore power. The distinct hum is there. All 3 fuses good. 110v plugs all live. Ideas, easy fixes and bubble gum duct tape contraptions welcome.

Thank you

Oh and it's a 69 GT.
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Old 04-20-2015, 10:53 PM   #2
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2005 39' Land Yacht 390 XL 396
Common Sense , Texas
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Your univolt is obviously dead, or at least dying. If you don't want to replace it with the appropriate and expensive converter, go to Walmart and buy the biggest automatic automotive battery charger they sell, and install it. It should keep you going, not cost an arm and a leg, and can be of some use when you do get around to installing a new proper converter.

On the other hand, the univolt is a very simple devise, like a fixed voltage power supply, and would be easy to repair at any decent electronics shop if you got it out and took it in.
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Old 04-20-2015, 11:26 PM   #3
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Spend the money for a converter. Around $150.


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Old 04-20-2015, 11:41 PM   #4
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1974 Argosy 20
2014 20' Flying Cloud
Kooskia , Idaho
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It is 46 years old. What other electronic equipment do you have and use which is 46 years old? Your Television? Radios? Do you use reel to reel tape or vinyl records still? Times and electronics change. And things do wear out.

If you ask forum members, and want to pay the shipping cost, I bet you can get another Univolt for free. I would not recommend it though.

There are no real repairs to the old Univolts. They are riveted together. The transformers get old and tired (an hummmmmm). The capacitors dry out. Even rectifiers fail.
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Old 04-21-2015, 08:50 AM   #5
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1969 21' Globetrotter
Calgary , Alberta
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Thank you for advice. Yes I know it is old and things wear out. I will replace it at some point. We hardly ever park where there is power so it is not a huge deal. I have realized that it is working although there is a short in the main power connection. It works on shore power great if the battery is disconnected. I know some models have a switch for this but I have yet to find one on ours. Like any old electronic device, I gave it a good smack and the lights came on.
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Old 04-21-2015, 09:33 AM   #6
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Those older model's battery distribution panel, or fuse panels are bad about intermittent connections that will give you the symptom of low battery voltage, or a bad converter because of a resistive joint.

You might want to wiggle all the connections including the fuse holders themselves to make sure that is not your problem.
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