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Old 03-24-2007, 08:57 AM   #1
Rivet Master
Crusty's Avatar
1992 34' Excella
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 562
Images: 10
Hi Folks, New Owner Here

Hi everyone, I'm the new owner of a 1992 Excella 1000 34' and this is my first RV. I've purchased the trailer to put on a lot out the lake and live in it full time, though I understand that this isn't the most appropriate use of an AS but until I retire I'm tied down pretty close to home. Hopefully, with the semi-tropical climate here in Austin, TX cold weather/ freezing temps will only be an occasional issue which I believe that I can deal with.

My trailer is in quite nice condition (see the original plastic still on the couch toekick), with the exception of a couple of dents in the skin at the top rear where an idiot workman at the former owner's house stepped onto it when he was working on the roof of the house it was parked at. Look at the position of the trailer in the first photo and you'll readily see how it happened. I'm hoping that I'll be able to pull them back out using the suction cup dent puller method, but for now at least they don't leak.

Perhaps some of you can answer a question that I have. Currently the battery is dead and it won't accept a charge. However, since I'm going to be connected to AC power at my lot and the trailer won't be moved for some time, is it necessary for me to spend the money for a new battery right now?

As a follow up question, in my years of dealing with sailboats and their self-contained electrical systems I've found Trojan T105 golf cart batteries to be an excellent value for house batteries. I'm thinking of eventually installing two of these for trailer batteries and since they are 6v batteries, they must be installed in series for the required 12v. There is room for them and this practice is in use on many sailboats. Can any one see a reason to not take this approach?
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Old 03-24-2007, 10:46 AM   #2
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1986 31' Sovereign
Miami , Florida
Join Date: Feb 2004
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Lots of folks advocate the use of golf cart batteries as they have tremendous capacity and are good for hundreds of deep cycles. If you can fit them, I'd say go for it.

As for your present situation -- the battery acts as a sort of traffic cop in the 12vdc circuit - its capacitance (and resistance for that matter) tends to smooth out spikes and quiet electrical noise. It also helps a lot with a sudden large dc load (say the furnace fan starting). I suspect that running with a failed battery would seriously tax your converter/charger and running with no battery would cause odd electrical gremlins (especially if your radio or tv run on 12vdc). If you are going to be parked and on shore power 24x7, then I would buy a cheapo new battery for the time being.

Later, after you've won the lottery and are headed with the trailer for Alaska, you can invest in a quality set of batteries and top notch converter/charger.


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Old 03-24-2007, 11:41 AM   #3
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Waynon's Avatar
1986 34' Excella
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 108

Originally Posted by Crusty
Hi everyone, I'm the new owner of a 1992 Excella 1000 34' and this is my first RV.Perhaps some of you can answer a question that I have. Currently the battery is dead and it won't accept a charge. However, since I'm going to be connected to AC power at my lot and the trailer won't be moved for some time, is it necessary for me to spend the money for a new battery right now?
Welcome! Sounds like you have a wonderful AS. You've come to the right place for information about your Excella 34'. People here collectively know just about everything. Of course, some of the members think they know everything individually. smile.

I'd recommend that you spring for the batteries, but I believe you asked if it is necessary. No, it isn't. My slightly older 34' Excel actually has a way to turn a knob and isolate the batteries, so that they are neither used nor charged. Obviously AS wouldn't have included that in the design if it was not to be done. Having said that, I think the previous poster was right that it makes a better system to have the batteries in place, not to speak of the convenience in case of power outage and such.

Yes, it would be nice to have your 34' going down the road to exotic places, but hey, LOTS of people come to Austin to camp on Lake Travis. You'll just already be here.

I full time in mine, but spend a large part of my time in Austin since I have two kids living there. My son also sails.

You mentioned the 6v batteries. I have considered doing that because I like to boondock in mine, but haven't exactly decided if it is worth the change in setup that it would require. I use two high quality batteries in the two provided battery boxes. Others have used more batteries and some use the 6volt batteries and put them under the gaucho/couch. I'm just not convinced that's safe.

My email is I have a 86 34' Excella and am in Austin quite frequently. Send more pictures. I couldn't get the ones you send this time. Don't know if they didn't make it to the forum or what. If I can ever help you in any way, give me a holler.

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Old 03-24-2007, 08:47 PM   #4
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1992 34' Excella
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 562
Images: 10
Try Again

OK, I've loaded the pics on a webserver other than Yahoo so here they are again.

Thanks for the battery input y'all. I'd forgotten about the significant power filtering/cleaning ability of large batteries and it makes perfect sense to install at least one battery for now to keep the power as clean as possible (probably gonna be a Wally World battery for now).

Later on I do intend to go the full monty with solar panels, Link Monitor, Xantrex inverter/charger and Trojan batteries like I've done on my boat. It was expensive but I've got a lot of reliable power and I'd like to eventually make my trailer the same way.

Thanks for the offer of help too Wayne. I probably will email you as questions arise while I climb the AS learning curve.

BTW, mine has the battery disconnect switch too, but the manual says to only switch it to off if the trailer is going to be stored for a long time.
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Old 03-25-2007, 06:50 AM   #5
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Vintage Kin Owner
Naples , Florida
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 7,471

NICE TRAILER! Good luck with it!

If you're planning on all of those electrical mods, I would go all the way and get a pair of Lifeline AGM bateries. I sell both to my customers, and I have a a pair of Lifeline 6VDC golf cart batteries in my 19CCD.

Lifeline Marine Batteries - AGM Marine Battery & AGM RV Battery
Solar Tech Energy Systems, Inc.
Victron Solar Components and Inverters, Zamp Solar Panels, LiFeBlue and Battle Born Lithium Batteries, Lifeline AGM Batteries
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Old 03-25-2007, 08:31 AM   #6
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1992 34' Excella
Austin , Texas
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 562
Images: 10
Thanks Lewster, I'm proud of it already.

I appreciate the battery input and I'm familiar with the Lifeline AGM's since I had a boat equipped with them for house batteries. They are very good batteries but a little bit electrically delicate and also a bit pricey for me. Even though the Trojans are wet and unsealed, I prefer them for their initial cost going in, high discharge ability (they should routinely be discharged 80% from maximum capacity - most batteries are only 50%) and their unbelievable longevity and electrical durability. I had one pair of T105's that lasted for 10 years in three different boats and a two year stint in the garage without being charged.

I suspect that this community is much like the sailing community, where the topic of batteries can be a contoversial subject with many views about the best battery, none of which is absolutely correct (including my own) because no one has yet made the perfect battery.

An anecdotal comment that I would make (mostly for the purpose of informing others to not make the same mistake that I made) was the situation which occurred to me when I was using a 5W flexible solar panel to keep my AGM's charged. Since the current from the panels was low, I reasoned that it would be OK to leave it connected to the AGM's to trickle charge them during the week. To my surprise, I arrived at my boat after a hot sunny week in Central Texas to find both of my nearly new AGM's swollen up like jellyfish and electrically ruined. Later on I learned that the flexible battery charger type of solar panels can output up to 18V in bright sunlight and this overvoltage is what damaged my AGM's. So, if you use one of these type panels, be sure to use a charge controller with it so that your batteries aren't damaged, and in fact I would recommmend that you use a charge controller with any solar panel.
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