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Old 05-01-2021, 05:26 PM   #1
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2021 16' Bambi
Forest Lake , Minnesota
Join Date: Mar 2021
Posts: 8
2021 Bambi 16RB Irregular Regulator?

We just purchased a new 2021 16RB Bambi. I read in the manual there is an indicator that goes from green to red when the primary tank is empty. However, looking at our regulator there isn't such a thing only a sight window which faces backwards towards the trailer and is impossible to read.

I did some research looking in the parts manual for the 2021 and ours looks nothing like the factory regulator (602332-09). Does anyone know what the correct one should be? I have a strong suspicion that this was dealer installed and they just put on what the had on hand or something. Is this possible? If so, I'm not very happy - well, I'm not happy regardless.

Thanks!
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Old 05-01-2021, 06:13 PM   #2
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I suspect that the little window in the front will flash red when switchover occurs. It’s easy to test — turn both tanks off, turn on one of the stove burners and see what happens.

There is currently a shortage of everything RV related so it may just be that Airstream had to be creative with sourcing the part.
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Old 05-02-2021, 02:44 PM   #3
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2021 16' Bambi
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Thanks for the response. I can't see the window without taking the tank cover off and it's facing backwards and there's not enough space to see it directly. I'd have to use a mirror or something. I doubt that's how it's supposed to function regardless if it's a substitute.

Currently I have to take the cover off and disconnect the tank and pick it up to guess how much propane is left. So, I guess I'll put a support ticket into the Mothership and see if they can tell me what the deal is.
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Old 05-02-2021, 03:29 PM   #4
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2002 19' Bambi
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That is a Flame King auto-changeover regulator. I think that n2916s is correct that parts shortages may have led the factory to install a brand that is available. If the dealer installed it, perhaps a problem with the original was the reason.

We have had 3 different regulators (none were Flame King) on our trailer since we bought it new in 2002. The entire time, we have used a mirror to check on the indicator. A small stainless steel camping mirror works perfectly for us.

Tim
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Old 05-02-2021, 03:29 PM   #5
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If your pour a cup of warm water over the tank, you should discern a “frost line” at the level of the liquid propane. It will give you a ballpark idea of what is left in the tank.
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Old 05-02-2021, 04:05 PM   #6
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2021 16' Bambi
Ft Thomas , Kentucky
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We picked up our new 16’ Bambi in March. We got the same regulator. Very frustrating at first as the owner’s manual pictured a different regulator. I slid my phone down and took a picture of the regulator. I too don’t see any type of indicator that reflects an empty tank.
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Old 05-02-2021, 04:53 PM   #7
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The description on Amazon says, "The Auto-Changeover LP Regulator allows you to hook up 2 Propane tanks and the regulator automatically switches over to the second tank once the first one runs out (and vice versa). The indicator changes color to let you know when a tank has been depleted and needs to be refilled."

Judging by the online pictures of the regulator, the indicator is a little window under the selector knob.

Tim
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Old 05-03-2021, 07:30 AM   #8
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2021 16' Bambi
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@Capt Blue, interesting, I was thinking maybe the dealer put it on, since I was guessing AS wouldn't ship the unit with full tanks and the regulator needed to be installed.

I put in a ticket with AS and asked they replace it with the correct part. I'll post when I get a response.
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Old 05-03-2021, 09:08 AM   #9
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2021 16' Bambi
Forest Lake , Minnesota
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Well, I heard back from AS:

I do apologize for the confusion. We did change regulators during the 2021 model year to the one on your Airstream. I will get that updated in the parts book and the manual. The one you have is the correct one for that model. You can order a replacement through any of our dealers, but it would not be considered warranty. Thank you.

This just made me more angry. Why should I order a $116 part to get something that should work as intended on my insanely expensive camper? I don't see how replacing the original part with something that doesn't work is: "we shouldn't make changes – only improvements.” I sent a response to that effect and asked them to escalate this.
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Old 05-03-2021, 11:53 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffKim View Post
Why should I order a $116 part to get something that should work as intended ... I don't see how replacing the original part with something that doesn't work is: "we shouldn't make changes – only improvements.”
Are you sure that the regulator doesn't work? You did not mention that before.

A new switching regulator costs something like $35 to $50. If you can't install it yourself, labor costs will, of course, make replacing it more expensive.

Tim
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Old 05-03-2021, 12:54 PM   #11
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2021 16' Bambi
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Tim, I wasn't very clear - it doesn't work because it's nearly impossible to see the sight window the way it's mounted. The regulator itself works as intended.
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Old 05-03-2021, 01:00 PM   #12
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2021 16' Bambi
Forest Lake , Minnesota
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I heard from AS and they are going to send me the original regulator as goodwill. I'm still confused why they think the replacement part is adequate when the sight window can't be seen. I'm usually not a complainer but seems to have been effective. I'll report back when I get the new one installed.
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Old 05-04-2021, 05:57 AM   #13
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2021 16' Bambi
Ft Thomas , Kentucky
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Congratulations JeffKim!

I think I’ll tough it out on the regulator. I was more disappointed on the time I spent trying to figure out the difference between what was in the manual and what was stuck on my tanks. Hope my wife won’t complain to me using her makeup mirror to check the Lp gas indicator !
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Old 05-05-2021, 12:20 PM   #14
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2021 16' Bambi
Forest Lake , Minnesota
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Well, I spoke too soon, the nice woman at AS was following up but she hasn't been able to locate any at world headquarters. Capt, can I borrow your wife's mirror? I also like the warm water test, that might be my go-to.

I wanted to add this is my first substantive post on AIRForums and I appreciate all the responses. I hope I can provide useful advice as well down the road.
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Old 05-05-2021, 01:44 PM   #15
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2002 19' Bambi
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No need to borrow a mirror, just buy one or the other of these:

https://www.amazon.com/HTS-Heavy-Dut...FTY0KSRTPHG51K
https://www.amazon.com/Coghlans-8501...0X15G0910FGWQX

As I mentioned above, I have used a mirror for years.

If you really want to know how much propane is in a tank, perhaps this is the way to go: https://www.mopeka.com/

Tim
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