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Old 12-22-2013, 08:58 AM   #1
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2014 30' Flying Cloud
Ponce Inlet , Florida
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Two Weeks New

After a long wait we picked up our new 30’ flying cloud two weeks ago and are on a month long+ shakedown cruise. I was very skeptical of driving a 40+ foot rig but so far so good. I have back in twice on the second try both times and me and the wife are still speaking.
The first couple of days we stayed near Ft Meyers transferred all the stuff we could carry in our TV and began the what goes where drill and figuring how all the stuff works. Then it was off to see Lew in Naples FL for AM solar, Isotherm 195 marine fridge installation and continuing AS education.
Next stopped by Daytona Beach (home) to dump the empty boxes and take on more ballast. Finally done with the major modifications and logistic stuff and off for some real camping or is that glamping. We spent the next few days at Fort Clinch SP just north of Jacksonville. Nice campground. Now in Atlanta visiting relatives for Xmas. 6 days off the grid will test the new solar set up. Then its back on the road again. Our plan it to be half timers.
Many thanks to the contributors on this board the information helped us decide what options to add and about how much is fair price. Hope to be able to add some info as well.
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Old 12-22-2013, 09:04 AM   #2
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A month long shake down? COOL! Are you swapping the fridge out?
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Old 12-22-2013, 09:38 AM   #3
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Already swapped out with Isotherm Cruise 195 . Click image for larger version

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Old 12-22-2013, 09:51 AM   #4
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Greetings from the Florida Panhandle

Congratulations on the new baby! May you have many great Airstream adventures.
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Old 12-22-2013, 06:29 PM   #5
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I would like to read the details about the AM solar system you installed. I am contemplating hopefully 600 watts in panels, four lifeline 300 amp hour batteries and a Magnum 2800 watt box in the middle to manage the system.
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Old 12-23-2013, 03:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by switz View Post
I would like to read the details about the AM solar system you installed. I am contemplating hopefully 600 watts in panels, four lifeline 300 amp hour batteries and a Magnum 2800 watt box in the middle to manage the system.
AM solar system:

SunRunner Signature 40/4/Pro Core
4 GS 135W solar panels
Magnum 1000W Charger/Inverter
4 Lifeline 6 CT Batteries
New low profile vent covers
Combiner box
Wiring and installation hardware
The wiring is sized for up to 800W should I want to add panels in the future.

The batteries, inverter and solar charger are installed under the couch.
With my FC 30 2 AC configuration the 135s had to be installed lengthwise. There is room for one more 135W and a 100W panel if I need it.

I purchased the system w/ installation from an AS forum member.


The installation required NO additional holes in the shell or belly pan of the AS. SWEET !
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Old 12-23-2013, 07:13 PM   #7
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How does the new fridge compare with the one Airstream provides? Advantages/Disadvantages.
Thanks
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Old 12-26-2013, 08:17 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LiLNomad View Post
How does the new fridge compare with the one Airstream provides? Advantages/Disadvantages.
Thanks
LilNomad
We only had the AS Dometic fridge for 2 days before I swapped it out. So the info is based on my rationale for the swap.

Pros
Energy efficient
Separate compressors for fridge and freezer can get desired temp in both or can turn off freezer if I need to conserve battery or have limited power (15 amp service)
No worries about pre cooling food.
Food always cold
No propane required
Very unlikely to catch fire
Cons:
Cost, although you can get less costly unit with single compressor
Need solar or generator if boondocking.

Based on our experience to date with our solar setup we should be able to run a minimum of 3-4 days with little or no sun. depending on the outside temp.
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Old 12-27-2013, 02:18 AM   #9
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Looks like a great rig with your initial mods...

Question - Where/how did you mount that 360 lbs battery bank?

I would image the batteries mounted on their 'sides' for clearance - do you think the battery bank weight affected the trailer's for/aft balance or tongue weight to any degree..?
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Old 12-27-2013, 08:53 AM   #10
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Removing the 100 pounds of factory batteries for the four nearly 100 pounds each Life Line batteries would have an impact on increasing the tongue weight. The installation from photos put the batteries behind the front wall inside the coach, so the weight downward force vector is several feet closer to the trailer wheels than the original battery location. The increase of around 300 pounds of batteries exclusive of the heavier copper wiring would not all be as tongue weight.

Putting the trailer on some CAT scales will give the result of the entire solar system and heavier fridge installation on the empty weight of the trailer.
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Old 12-28-2013, 10:30 AM   #11
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The batteries are installed on their side. Switz is correct about 100 lbs of battery removed. Install leaves no storage room under the couch. That probably means at least another 100lbs knowing my DW. The marine refrigerator is within 20 lbs of the original. So overall is pretty close to a wash. There are limited battery bank installation options. We considered install under the dinette but 300 lbs on one side not a good idea. I did not get to the cat scales before the mod so there is no baseline weight. We are still learning and lovin life on the shake down cruise.



Sent from my VS840 4G using Airstream Forums mobile app
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Old 12-28-2013, 11:21 AM   #12
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Very nice Beach Bum. That fridge looks nice. Did you sell your fridge while in Naples? Reason is I saw one advertised that said new $600. I just bought a Dometic New Generations just before that sale- too bad. Congratulations on your trip. Perhaps we will meet some time. Happy Camping.
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Old 12-28-2013, 05:08 PM   #13
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Half timing! I'm jealous. Good luck out there!
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Old 12-28-2013, 08:35 PM   #14
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Very nice Beach Bum. That fridge looks nice. Did you sell your fridge while in Naples? Reason is I saw one advertised that said new $600. I just bought a Dometic New Generations just before that sale- too bad. Congratulations on your trip. Perhaps we will meet some time. Happy Camping.
Fridge is still for sale. Love the fridge. Trip is going well although it's raining here southern GA. Good news is no visible leaks
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