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Old 07-15-2008, 07:01 PM   #1
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Cassette player replacement

Is it difficult to replace the casette player with a dvd player? Are there any special problems or suggestions? Thanks in advance for your comment.
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Old 07-15-2008, 07:12 PM   #2
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'Cassette' is usually considered to be audio. Do you mean VCR? Is it OEM? Photos of the original setup would help make connections to people with similar setups.
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Old 07-15-2008, 07:58 PM   #3
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Since your trailer is an '86, I'm guessing it is a cassette radio you are asking for help on. Replacing it with a CD player is pretty easy, I've done so with our trailer. If you want to install an automotive-type am/fm/dvd unit, you will need to run something to the television for the video output.
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Old 07-15-2008, 08:06 PM   #4
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My 1982 Excella had a separate cassette deck as shown in this photo http://www.airforums.com/photos/show...0&userid=17830. Is yours similar? If so, you would need to fabricate a new panel, simple since it could be a flat piece of anything you choose, and replace the plastic holding the radio and cassette deck in place. BTW, both of these worked until quite recently when the power button on the radio failed.
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Old 07-15-2008, 09:30 PM   #5
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Maybe I am giving wrong information. I checked the Service Manual and an AM/FM radio and stereo tape player was originally installed at the front of the Airstream over the couch. I guess the original unit was replaced with an automotive type casette player. I guess the outside antenna must have been for the radio reception? SORRY for not being clear - but will appreciate any more information.
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Old 07-15-2008, 10:11 PM   #6
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It should be a wire-for-wire replacement with only two possible exceptions.

1. The new radios are microprocessor controlled, so they need a "Keep Alive," always hot, 12 V lead. The older automotive radios just had a single wire to the aux bus, so when you turned on the car, the radio could come on if it was already switched on. So you'll have two 12 V leads, both of which should be wired together to 12 V.

2. Some automotive radios, say over the last decade, had an antenna motor drive wire, which allowed the antenna to be extended when the radio was turned on. You can ignore this wire.

Any issues? Yes. By wiring the power and keep-alive leads together, the radio thinks the car is always on, so the display is always on. This isn't a problem over a week or two, but if you're away from the Airstream for longer, you need to kill the display. You can either put a switch in the power lead, or you can pop the display off (that's an anti-theft feature that comes in handy here).

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Old 07-17-2008, 09:26 AM   #7
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Thanks for the information - it certainly helps.
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Old 08-12-2008, 10:01 PM   #8
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I want to do a new installation of a AM/FM/CD audio system with an MP3 (auto. type) 12v system to drive 4 speakers. Does anyone have any good recommendations?
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Old 08-15-2008, 12:40 PM   #9
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Many good ones available, $100-$150 at Fry's in Vegas. All have what you need and come with a pigtail connector that can easily be wired into your existing power and speaker leads using crimp connectors or wire nuts (some folks think wire nuts will come loose in the vibration environment of an Airstream--not me).

Watch out for the radios that are designed to attract stupid people--flashy panels that eventually drive you around the bend.

Features I would get today are MP3 capability on the CD (and maybe WMA, if you use that format), front panel audio input, and USB connector on front panel so you can use a thumb drive instead of a CD. The audio input is something you might have to trade for the USB input--so analyze your own preference for getting yor music--if you have an iPod you'll want the audio connector.

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Old 08-17-2008, 04:06 PM   #10
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Smile Audio System

Thanks for the information. The suggestions sound good. Do you think I need to use marine grade speakers? Mt wife thinks this is a good idea. I didn't think I would splash water on the speakers or have that much condensation in the Airstream.
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Old 08-17-2008, 04:28 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Jim Weilhamm View Post
Thanks for the information. The suggestions sound good. Do you think I need to use marine grade speakers? Mt wife thinks this is a good idea. I didn't think I would splash water on the speakers or have that much condensation in the Airstream.
I donít think marine grade will be necessary. Hereís what I used: http://www.airforums.com/forums/f450...ent-38596.html. The price was good. Now I just need to move the Sansui amp and subwoofer from the Trade Wind to the Excella.
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Old 08-17-2008, 05:29 PM   #12
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FM HD is nice - be sure it has HD. Some say HD ready but that can mean you need another $100 converter.
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