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Old 02-05-2011, 11:34 PM   #1
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1970 31' Sovereign
Colorado , Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 13
Replacing the original 1970 univolt charger with a new Intellipower 9200-series

I've been planning to replace my old univolt system with a new intellipower 9200 series for a while. Here are a few pictures showing what I've done as of today:


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Old 02-05-2011, 11:58 PM   #2
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1970 31' Sovereign
Colorado , Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 13
Now before you ask - there are a few more pics but I need to get them from the phone to here. They'll come a bit later once I get time.

Specs: 31 Foot - 1970 Airstream.
Cost: $2800
Model: Sovereign Twin
Estimated cost of upgrades to date: $1400

Keep in mind she had most of the cabinets etc, but almost no electrical, plumbing, gas lines, worked. When I got it it was literally a silent tin box.

With that 1400 - to date:
1. Modified the propane tank bracket to hold 40lb tanks versus the original 30's
2. Redid the propane lines, regulator, connection to the propane furnace, cook stove, refrigerator.
3. Installed a new deep cycle battery.
4. Gutted and installed new 12V and 110VAC lighting/switches
5. Rebuilt the original propane furnace - which is extremely durable.
6. Fixed and got the old A/C unit and electric heater working
7. New beds
8. repositioned and remounted most of the interior walls and brackets to brace the interior better.
9. New electric brakes
10. Got part of my solar array started - more to follow
11. Installed a brand new Norcold 3-way refrigerater that will operate on AC or DC electric, plus propane.
12. Installed a minibar
13. Pulled about a gazillion dents. Riveted all lose panels.
14. Rebuilt the tail light assemblies then worked a little more on number 12
15. Setup the basic frame for my solar array for the top of the airstream.
16. Began work to install and test the CB, HAM, and Scanner systems.
17. Rebuilt the storage cabinets to hold more number 10 cans.

Taking my 1970 Sovereign to another level!!
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Old 02-06-2011, 12:02 AM   #3
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1970 31' Sovereign
Colorado , Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 13
back to the project with the charger/controller swap:

Ok so right in the middle of that photo - you will see the intelli-power 9200 series converter-charger I got to replace the old airstream univolt. Keep in mind that the old univolts were hard wired directly to the alternating current breaker box. What I have done - if you look to the right of the intellipower box, is install a 110 v/ac outlet to plug in the new charger. This also allowed me to reconfigure things a bit. If you look to the far right of the compartment - I retained the original on/off switch that controls the A/C power, and in this case I wired it so it turns that new A/C outlet versus the charger/controller itself.

On the left side is a whole other ballgame. The two smaller black devices are the new fuse block components. I picked them up for change at the local auto parts store. Once I had them mounted next to the charger/intellipower - I created two positive bridge cables - one for each. These bridge cables were soldered with copper post ends to ensure a good current.

In the lower center you will see a silver box. (under the black pipe). That is simply the junction box I installed to carry the original 110 current from the end of the wire that fed the old univolt. It allowed me to add a compartment light (15 watt), the outlet for the charger/controller, and organize things much better than before. It also allowed me to carry the extension wires up further onto the new mounting board.

I'm working continually on the airstream nowadays. I am most likely going to try to dig in a bit toward the solar charge controller and pre-wire an area near the front of the trailer for it if weather permits tomorrow.
Taking my 1970 Sovereign to another level!!
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Old 02-06-2011, 06:17 AM   #4
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1975 31' Sovereign
1973 27' Overlander
1977 23' Safari
Palmer Lake , Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2005
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I see some heavy cables. Keep in mind you'll 'never' draw more than 40-ish amps, and then only for a very short period. If you find working big wire mechanically challenging, don't wire up the Airstream like you're trying to start a V-8--it's not necessary.

It looks like really great work so far.

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Old 02-06-2011, 01:27 PM   #5
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1970 31' Sovereign
Colorado , Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 13
I always lean toward going extra heavy on cabling. Just force of habit. That whole ounce of prevention thing.

Although initially the amp draw will be low, I'm really planning to up the stakes. I am planning to setup and install a complete communications suite, scanners, ham radio, cb radio (redundancy), normal am/fm receiver, and then computer equipment.... extra water storage, the solar array and double battery banks....

I also got lucky and have a great supplier for 2 and 4 gauge battery cable, costs me practically nothing. I solder the ends to keep things clean and even if something were to dent in the back end, those cables are so thick I should be fairly safe unless its a substantial collision.

Can't wait to get out the door to work on the charge controller today. Incidentally, checked last night after I set the new intellipower in motion charging the system. It is blatantly obvious to me now that the univolt was severely in need of replacing. The battery in place now is charging like a champ and the controller/charger is scaling back perfectly to ensure it doesn't overcharge. I am impressed so far with the 9200 series controller and wizard.
Taking my 1970 Sovereign to another level!!
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Old 02-08-2011, 08:23 PM   #6
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1974 31' Excella 500
Charleston , South Carolina
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I am really interested in what you are doing but the pictures are way way to big.

As I grow older, I pay less attention to what men say. I just watch what they do.
- Andrew Carnegie
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univolt, intelli-power, replace

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