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Old 10-12-2014, 09:44 AM   #1
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Parallax DC Section Upgrade - 2010 28' FC

Just put in new batteries so I decided to upgrade the Parallax 7300 DC section in our 2010 28’ Flying Cloud to improve battery life. I found valuable information on the forum but thought I would summarize what I learned from my research and install.

I bought the Progressive Dynamics 6355 upgrade through Randy at Best Converter. PD equipment and Randy both come highly recommended and I concur.

1. The DC section in the Parallax is not bad hardware. It is robust and made well. It is just not intelligent in its battery charging function. The PD 6355 upgrade gives you smart charging stages resulting in improved battery life.

2. With this upgrade you are replacing the DC section of the Parallax. You will remove the Parallax’s DC section and replace it with a new converter section plus a new distribution/fuse board. The new board is a bit more ornate/ fragile than the Parallax board but it has significant advantages including LEDs that indicate a blown fuse, two low current section slots if you need it down the road for accessories, and a switch that allows you to manually step through the three different charging rates if needed. Note: For the 2010 28’ Flying Cloud, you do not use these two low current slots if the trailer is as factory supplied.

3. The 12 VDC hot and ground wires from the battery were plenty long enough in my trailer. This is contrary to other what others have reported. You do have to loosen a clamp where these wires come into the converter cabinet and pull some more in to work with.

4. You will be hooking up 120 VAC power to the new converter section. This includes a hot, neutral and ground wire. The green wire is the ground wire and seems to have confused others in the past.

5. The instructions are clear on the flashing green light on the fuse board and what its flashing interval means regarding charging voltage/status. They are not clear on how long you should expect it to take to get to the “maintain/float” voltage of 13.2V. As reported by Randy, it takes approximately 30 hours from the time that the batteries are fully charged for the voltage to drop to the float level.

6. All in all, this is not a complicated modification. The kit fits well, is well thought out, and the instructions are reasonably clear. As compared to what others have done, I do suggest you follow the instructions and route battery connections and converter DC connections behind the fuse board. This gives you a clean install and allows easy access to the fuses and/or addition of additional circuits should the need arise.

Hope this helps.
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Old 10-12-2014, 12:47 PM   #2
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Interesting and well thought out - well done!


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Old 10-14-2014, 04:20 PM   #3
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converter

Thanks for the pics on your upgrade project, Alan.
I have a question or two. So you chose the Progressive Dynamics 6355 just for the enhanced charging capabilities?
How did you arrive at this model and not the Progressive dynamics 4655, that is supposedly a direct replacement?
My AS has the 7300 as well and I think this would help it maintain the batteries from what I have read.

did you order the replacement circuit board with fuses separately ?
I appreciate your advice.
thanks
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Old 10-15-2014, 07:56 AM   #4
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Correction to model number

Correction to my original post - the replacement is a model PD4655
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Old 10-15-2014, 08:11 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyvekcat View Post
Thanks for the pics on your upgrade project, Alan.
I have a question or two. So you chose the Progressive Dynamics 6355 just for the enhanced charging capabilities?
How did you arrive at this model and not the Progressive dynamics 4655, that is supposedly a direct replacement?
My AS has the 7300 as well and I think this would help it maintain the batteries from what I have read.

did you order the replacement circuit board with fuses separately ?
I appreciate your advice.
thanks
Tyvekcat
Good catch, I do not know where I came up with that model number! The correct model is Progressive Dynamics 4655. I bought it from Randy at Best Converter. (Randy is a commercial member here on the Forum.)

I replaced the DC section of the Parallax because it does not have staged charging. It charges at one voltage and never drops it down to a float charge level. If you leave your trailer plugged in all the time with the batteries charging with the Parallax system, you will shorten the life of your batteries. That is why I put the new DC section in (PD 4655) which has multiple stages of charging and importantly drops to a float charge when the batteries are fully charged. I can now leave the trailer in my offsite storage garage plugged in and properly maintaining the batteries.

The kit comes with the board and you just reuse your old fuses for the circuits. The board has primary fuses installed.

Thanks for pointing out the mistake on the model number!
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Old 10-15-2014, 09:19 AM   #6
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Thanks Alan ! no worries, I transpose numbers all the time. I see that the new circuit/fuse panel comes with 4655, that's good.
Your project description and pics has boosted my confidence in attempting this job.
Yeah I think I will get one of these and replace the current power supply this winter sometime. I have a couple more trips planned this month and next, and I know how my projects go. I seem to stretch them out, so I had better wait for the winter doldrums, before I start this one .
Thanks !
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Old 10-15-2014, 09:32 AM   #7
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Alan, well documented!! Thanks very much. I'm about to change mine out, I hope it turns out as 'electrician-like' as yours!
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Old 10-15-2014, 10:48 AM   #8
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Al. Thanks for the writeup. It will be very helpful to a number of owners.

I changed the converter on my 2008 27FB Safari in the fall of 2011 (three years ago) just after I acquired the Airstream. I also installed the Progressive Dynamics 4655 purchased from Best Converter. The unit continues to perform trouble free. In fact, I'm still using the over four year old Kirkland (Costco) batteries installed by my trailer's prior owner. About once a month I check the water level and occasionally have to top off a cell or two. I'll probably replace the batteries in the spring of 2015 as a preventive maintenance measure.

As Al's post demonstrates, replacing the converter is a simple do it yourself operation which should dramatically improve battery life and performance. My experience with Randy at Best Converter was also first rate.
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Old 10-17-2014, 12:01 PM   #9
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Thanks Chuck

Thanks Chuck, you were the catalyst for me changing mine out!

I had discovered one of the Interstate batteries was hotter than a pistol and was low on electrolyte level (spelled shot). The batteries were about 4 1/2 years old but I decided I would not put new ones in without the charging upgrade. I remembered that you had done it and got your insights. I also looked for info here on the board and found useful info here as well.

Job done and I thought I would summarize what I had learned for others.
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