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Old 06-27-2016, 09:25 PM   #85
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I'll be keeping my Parallax around until I can verify my Boondocker after install doesn't have any annoying habits.
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Old 06-27-2016, 09:50 PM   #86
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Originally Posted by 66Overlander View Post
That's good to hear. We definitely notice dimming of some of the interior LED lights when turning on a large 12V electric load like the furnace blower or water pump when not connected to shore power (or when our converter failed) and the battery voltage dropped by 0.5V or more as confirmed on the monitor panel.

As a retired automotive engineer, we were taught that the light output of simple resistor limited LED lights can be very voltage sensitive. More complicated LED lights exist that are controlled by a constant current source and are thus not voltage sensitive. This type is more expensive, so I wouldn't have expected Airstream to use that type in their trailers. Maybe they did.
That was one of the advantages of switching to the 9280; no more flickering lights when the voltage swings.

I removed my parents' original Parallax (in a Thor Vegas motorhome) and installed a 9280. My Dad SWORE that it never went into boost mode because his led lights didn't get brighter. The lights used to flicker with varying brightness with the Parallax, which while being a single stage converter it used to vary voltage with load (due to it being a POS).

To prove that the 9280 was indeed going into boost mode, I turned on some of the incandescent bulbs in the motorhome (such as in the fridge and over he stove)...and he was astonished. Only the incandescent lights flickered.

There's nothing more distracting than lights getting brighter and dimmer. The 9280 takes care of that with led bulbs...and that was actually a HUGE bonus in switching to the 9280; it wasn't an initial reason for switching it out. The initial reason was to save the batteries.

The 9280 I installed in my parents' new Thor actually came out of their previous 2006 Surfside motorhome; I purchased the 9280 for them about 10 years ago for THAT motorhome. That motorhome was STILL using the ORIGINAL 10 year old batteries and had been left plugged in continuously for a DECADE when not being used for camping. Never added water to the batteries, never did ANYTHING but check them. The batteries STILL performed like new when they traded it. Of course the Surfside now has the original Parallax installed back in it, since the first thing my parents DEMANDED when they traded it was that they KEEP their converter.

Those batteries are probably toast by now.

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Old 07-02-2016, 08:09 PM   #87
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Very strange. The new solar controller came in and I went in to install it. Only to find the batteries at 100% and the solar panels putting out amps again. No idea why it just started working again. Literally the only thing I did from last troubleshooting to coming to install the new one was dismount it from the wall.
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Old 07-03-2016, 08:53 PM   #88
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Got the Lift and Lay motorized antenna mount all set up with the Wifi ranger and my Surecall LTE antenna. Testing out the Wifi Ranger before mounting, this thing is a beast!

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Old 07-03-2016, 09:49 PM   #89
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Yup. It's an absolutely solid high quality system. Just remember to have it lay with the antennae forward when stowed. Helps keep wind driven water out of your connections on the bottom of the antenna.

How do you plan to mount it on the roof and ground it for lighting protection?


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Old 07-03-2016, 11:01 PM   #90
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Unfortunately to maximize roof space, the ends of the antennas will be facing forwards while in the stowed position. To assist with water intrusion prevention, I will be sealing the ends of both antennas with silicone.

As for ground, I just planned to mount the stainless base of the Tarheel to the roof skin with stainless screws and then the perimeter with TremPro 365. Do you think an additional ground strap would be beneficial? There are solar panel legs close by.
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Old 07-04-2016, 12:39 AM   #91
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Ramblings about 2016 Classic...

Suggest using a layer of that self-vulcanizing tape from Radio Shack covered with UV resistant electrical tape. Use same technique on the remote control plug if it's exposed.

I would use a few extra SS screws through a few extra holes to get a good electrical connection. Seal it up afterward as you suggest. Don't forget to seal around the screw heads as well. I plan to use Olympic rivets because I'm a bit paranoid about screws getting loose.

Should look and work nice. More pics when you get it installed, please.


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Old 07-04-2016, 12:55 AM   #92
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Cool Cat Equality

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Please tell me you don't let that cat roam around the campground to climb on other people's cars and trailers...
Remember, Cats have Staff, Dogs have Owners!
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Old 07-04-2016, 08:39 AM   #93
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Originally Posted by rmkrum View Post
Suggest using a layer of that self-vulcanizing tape from Radio Shack covered with UV resistant electrical tape. Use same technique on the remote control plug if it's exposed.

I would use a few extra SS screws through a few extra holes to get a good electrical connection. Seal it up afterward as you suggest. Don't forget to seal around the screw heads as well. I plan to use Olympic rivets because I'm a bit paranoid about screws getting loose.

Should look and work nice. More pics when you get it installed, please.


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I think the stainless screws going into the skin would be a good conduit. The aluminum shell acting as a Faraday cage. From my reading though, what you don't want is a ground to the Earth during a lightning storm for the charge to pass. IE: raise stabilizer jacks, disconnect shore power. Put tongue jack on plastic or wood and of course lower your antenna. Lightning seeks a tall object with good ground. Cars typically make for good lightning protection as they are not grounded.

I think I may also put around the border of the mounting plate; Eternabond tape.
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Old 07-04-2016, 10:00 PM   #94
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So it's been raining all weekend so I haven't done any of the roof mounting. On the interior, I've got the WeBoost, interior credit card antenna, Surge power monitor, WifiRanger Go2, grommet access to fridge vent, and Tarheel antenna raise/lower switch all mounted:




Discovered more wonderful Airstream quality when I plugged in the Go2, no power from that hutch receptacle. Took the receptacle apart to find this:



No one even bothered to press on the black and ground wires! The grey plastic backing that puts pressure on the wires that snaps into place was not snapped. Just horrible quality control that could have led to a fire.

Means AS factory didn't test the outlet or the Blu-ray player, nor did Colonial on pre-delivery.

I emailed customer service to report the issues, wonder if they will even reply. I wouldn't expect that shoddy of electrical work on a $20K trailer let alone a $120K one. I'm going to continue to get into every crevice I can find and check the wiring/connections, one of my greatest fears is an electrical fire. Finding an outlet that isn't even hooked up certainly doesn't allay my worries.

On another note; does anyone find the Wifi Ranger interface to be as slow as molasses? Whenever I update a setting or try and connect to networks, it sure does take its time. I wonder if they have a very slow processor in that thing.

I've also looked into the speaker wires coming off the Polk amplifier under the Blu-ray player. Man, did they use some pathetically thin wire to these speakers...
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Old 07-04-2016, 10:09 PM   #95
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After THIS many years, I just don't see how ANYONE could be SURPRISED at this level of quality control from Airstream.

This is the NORM.

The only thing surprising about it is the fact that someone who would spend $130,000 didn't research Airstream's level of quality FIRST and is thus surprised at the extent of the lack of quality control. That always surprises me.

How could someone throw THAT MUCH money away without FULLY researching what they were getting into beforehand?!?!!!!??????

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Old 07-04-2016, 11:09 PM   #96
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I've done quite a bit of research on Airstream's before my purchase. I knew fully well that I'd have to fix and tweak some stuff after delivery.

I had a leaking cold water supply under the bathroom sink and a faulty electric stabilizer jack on delivery. Both relatively easy fixes. Finding a haphazardly disconnected electrical outlet is above normal quality rantings that I've seen on the forums. The first two items were not surprising, the third is. Like I said, the amount of money the trailer cost is irrelevant. I'd be just as pissed if it was a 16' Bambi for $40K.

Why did a purchase an expensive Airstream? Why do thousands of others continue to keep the factory at full capacity even with the quality issues? There is nothing else on the market to compete with AS.

I assume you own an Airstream since you are on this forum? Why did YOU purchase an Airstream if the quality is so bad? Pretty silly to ask a question trying to provoke when the same question applies just as much to you as anyone else.
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Old 07-04-2016, 11:39 PM   #97
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I assume you own an Airstream since you are on this forum? Why did YOU purchase an Airstream if the quality is so bad? Pretty silly to ask a question trying to provoke when the same question applies just as much to you as anyone else.
I bought it because I liked the way it looked. The same reason most people buy them...the style and look. Most of us don't have delusions about Airstream being some beacon of great quality. Except the "handmade" apologists...

But, before I purchased it, I researched for years...I absolutely KNEW what I was getting into. I have not been surprised whatsoever when ANYTHING has gone wrong with my trailer.

Now factory SERVICE quality...that's another matter entirely.
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Old 07-06-2016, 09:10 AM   #98
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RE: #5...

I have yet to find an outdoor rated stainless outlet cover. All I can find is aluminum. Pass & Seymour makes one, but it does not seal against the elements.

Anyone find anything that I don't know about?

Dan Busse
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WBCCI 14004
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