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Old 01-22-2011, 02:38 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by withidl View Post
[FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3]See the following link for a detailed and very spirited discussion on my 2001 X5 4.4i (with Sport Package & Dinan engine/transmission upgrades), Hensley hitch and 31 foot 2002 ASCL (8,300# GVWR) assembly which I have pulled over 32,000 miles.
When's the last time you inspected your hitch connection points to the frame, etc.
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Old 01-22-2011, 04:23 PM   #44
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When's the last time you inspected your hitch connection points to the frame, etc.
About a year ago I needed to access the X5's battery which is located at the bottom of the rear of the vehicle under the air suspension compressor which is under the spare tire. This exposes the mounting bolts on both sides of the unibody where the hitch "inserts" replace the original rear bumper shocks. Being a cheap gear head I personally installed the OEM hitch because I wanted it done correctly and my labor doesn't count for much. It also allows me to inspect and KNOW if anything is amiss. Nothing amiss.

Additionally, I inspect the receiver/bumper insert clearance which has never changed (see attached photos).

Itís interesting to me that so many members either wonít accept or fail to understand that in fact a properly set up large (5,000# curb weight, 300hp, 350#í torque) SUV can easily handle a large AS without mechanical failure. My X5 would have had absolutely no problem pulling the 34 foot 10,000 pound AS I originally considered but that didnít really offer much more for the additional $$$.
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Old 03-02-2011, 03:40 PM   #45
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Genset Exterior Photos

I pulled the AS forward today exposing the genset exterior access and took some photos that I couldn’t in my previous posts.

Some explanation of the following photos:

Cooling Air Exhaust Shute1 and Service1.jpg and Cooling Air Exhaust Shute2 and Service2.jpg – This shows the conversion of the lower storage compartment into the “down shute” (aluminum box) for cooling air exhaust. The “down shute” straddles the AS frame rail so that Ĺ of the cooling air exits directly to the curb side; the other Ĺ exits under the AS being directed toward the street side (other photos show this exit).

Also shown is a plastic container in the area where the genset oil drain is located. I use the plastic container to catch the oil being drained.

Cooling Air Exhaust Shute3.jpg and Cooling Air Exhaust Shute4.jpg – This shute directs the other Ĺ of the cooling air exhaust under the AS toward the street side. Without the directed cooling exhaust shutes the heated (REALLY HOT) cooling air would “mushroom” off of the ground and be re-drawn back into the cooling intake opening compromising genset cooling.

Genset Cooling Air Intake.jpg – Intake cooling air (and engine carburetor intake) is drawn up from beneath the AS through the opening to the left of the genset (red cable is + from the batteries, horzontal black cable is output to the “Power Switch”, verticle black cable is wiring to kitchen remote start/stop & not visible is the gasoline fuel line). The air is then drawn around to the front of the genset entering the louvers between the front of the genset and the storage door. This indirect draw greatly mutes the noise level.

The other 5 photos are self explainatory.
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Old 03-02-2011, 06:30 PM   #46
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Mist likely size. We have a Yamaha ES2400ISHC and it does fine locked up to the rear of the trailer.
"...and it does fine locked up..." do you really lock it up? I am starting to wonder if maybe I should too -- afterall, they are pretty expensive!

How do you lock it up?
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Old 05-01-2011, 06:55 PM   #47
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I have to push our boats backwards up a steep driveway to park them. I had a front bumper made with a receiver hitch setup on it. It's a piece of cake to push a trailer hooked to the front of the vehicle. You can put it exactly where you want it, the first time.
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Old 02-01-2012, 06:22 PM   #48
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My "forever" Airstream will have a generator installed, with 12v for charging and 110v with enough current to run a 15k btu A/C and a couple of smaller devices.

I decided to place it just forward of the wheel well on the passenger side, fully enclosed and insulated, air in from below, exhaust out from the top through a refer vent. I expect to shut out enough noise that it will be not uncomfortable. I would install a custom fuel tank to run it for 24 hours (however large that may be).

And, my next Airstream will have a lojack unit.
Why would you have a fuel tank? propane conversion and plug it into the same line as the fridge, much much safer.
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Old 02-01-2012, 06:48 PM   #49
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My favorite choice would be under the fridge, space lined with fiberglass to deaden sound, air would be drawn from a vented door such as what is on the fridge, water heater, furnace. Fuel would be supplied from the propane tanks as there is already an available line and less fuel to carry plus propane in a tank is more stable than a gas tank that build fumes and becomes a double bomb waiting to go off.
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Old 02-01-2012, 07:23 PM   #50
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My favorite choice would be under the fridge, space lined with fiberglass to deaden sound, air would be drawn from a vented door such as what is on the fridge, water heater, furnace. Fuel would be supplied from the propane tanks as there is already an available line and less fuel to carry plus propane in a tank is more stable than a gas tank that build fumes and becomes a double bomb waiting to go off.
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Old 02-02-2012, 12:18 AM   #51
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Before we adopted a 310 diesel like Mike Leary's (whose 6.5 kW two-cylinder Onan runs just fine) we had a 25 ft Tradewind. We looked at a couple of things for a generator install in the trailer and ended up sticking with a portable (in our case a Honda 2000 watt inverter type). The suggestions above are reasonable but there are some gotchas.

You can isolate a bit of the sound but not very much. Fiberglass will not help unless it's at least a foot thick in that frequency range. It takes solid, rigid material like the steel box that gensets are mounted in in MHs to keep the noise outside. And this does very little to the vibration, which will be the major issue. (Note, I am an acoustical engineer and spend a lot of time working on structure- and airborne noise issues.)

A genset producing enough to run an airconditioner will be at minimum a 3 kW unit. This requires a lot of air and generates about 10 kW of heat.

Strongly recommend a portable unit, mounted so you can wheel it a few yards away from your campsite. You can control a bit of the noise but you cannot control the vibration effectively without massive structures, in my experience.
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Old 02-02-2012, 06:46 AM   #52
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You can isolate a bit of the sound but not very much. Fiberglass will not help unless it's at least a foot thick in that frequency range. It takes solid, rigid material like the steel box that gensets are mounted in in MHs to keep the noise outside. And this does very little to the vibration, which will be the major issue. (Note, I am an acoustical engineer and spend a lot of time working on structure- and airborne noise issues.)
This completely matches my experience with the generator in the B190. It had a nice vibration you could feel throughout the camper, and the noise was pretty solid - the only time it was running and I couldn't hear it was when I was on the road and the van's engine was working hard; as soon as I got back down to idle, or even just cruising, I'd be like, "Oh, good, the generator hasn't stalled."

In that case, the generator was mounted in a metal cabinet beneath the couch.

I've always wondered about the generator mounted in a trailer. Sounds like it'd be a similar experience. Too bad there's not another way to generate electricity from propane/gas/diesel.
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Old 02-05-2012, 11:35 AM   #53
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You can isolate a bit of the sound but not very much. Fiberglass will not help unless it's at least a foot thick in that frequency range. It takes solid, rigid material like the steel box that gensets are mounted in in MHs to keep the noise outside.

>>Not quite true, fiberglass @ 1" thickness with styrofoam 1/2" thick on all sides but one will redirect the sound to outside, this is where the vented aluminmum door comes in to let the sound go somewhere. If it is one of the gens that run quiet then it should not be that loud. I will let you know cause if I do not get the motorhome that I am looking at then I will be building one and looking at the install as I have described<<<

And this does very little to the vibration, which will be the major issue. (Note, I am an acoustical engineer and spend a lot of time working on structure- and airborne noise issues.)
>>>Vibration can be attuned with the use of rubber mounts that curtails vibration. If you take some of these gens apart you will see that they set on rubber mounts otherwise everytime you start one it would walk caused by the vibration. You take their mounts and add more to it you decrease the vibs even more.<<
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Old 02-05-2012, 12:12 PM   #54
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A generator compartment must also be fire proof.

Airstream used a 12 volt generator back in 1973.

I used it a fair amount, and it did a good job, "when it worked".

It's major problem was changes in altitude.

Different altitudes required a carburetor readjustment, again and again.

Sometimes as little as 1000 feet change, would not allow the generator to start.

As a test, I let it run, and then changed altitude simply by towing the trailer, and the generator would quit.

But, when it did run, it was quiet and did a good job keeping the battery charged. It also was very easy on propane consumption.

Andy
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Old 02-06-2012, 12:27 AM   #55
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>>>Vibration can be attuned with the use of rubber mounts that curtails vibration. If you take some of these gens apart you will see that they set on rubber mounts otherwise everytime you start one it would walk caused by the vibration. You take their mounts and add more to it you decrease the vibs even more.<<
That's part of the picture but more is not necessarily better. The modern National Park Service-compliant quiet generators from Onan for instance have such mounts internally and they work really well, because they can be tuned to the exact vibration frequency of the generator. Properly balanced and tuned the whole system shakes internally and doesn't transmit significant vibration to the frame. This is the same approach taken for years for generators used on movie sets -- 100 kW and nearly silent, no vibration.

Also to Andy's comment about altitude, the newer gensets have altitude compensating carbs which help a lot. Propane is also easier than gasoline that way.
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Old 02-07-2012, 02:04 PM   #56
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That's part of the picture but more is not necessarily better. The modern National Park Service-compliant quiet generators from Onan for instance have such mounts internally and they work really well, because they can be tuned to the exact vibration frequency of the generator. Properly balanced and tuned the whole system shakes internally and doesn't transmit significant vibration to the frame. This is the same approach taken for years for generators used on movie sets -- 100 kW and nearly silent, no vibration.
My point exactly, everywhere there is metal to metal and not 1 solid peice there is some sort of rubber or plastic to dampen noise. Now you do the same to the frame where it makes contact to what ever it is mounted/sitting on and you reduce even more noise as well as vibration.
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