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Old 01-14-2022, 11:09 AM   #1
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2021 25' Flying Cloud
Willmar , Alaska
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Electrical System Upgrade - 25' RTB FC

Hey all, great resources here.

First, we have a 2021 RTB 25' FC and are looking to upgrade from the 1000 watt inverter/2x AGM batteries to 3000 watt inverter and lithium. I am 90% sure I can fit the inverter (Victron) and 3x batteries (battleborn) in the existing electrical cabinet. Worst case, I would move the inverter to the external front drivers side cabinet.

My questions are a couple:

1 - Anyone in the midwest used a company to do the install / upgrade? If so, who and would you recommend them? The companies I am finding are almost all East or West coast.

2 - Exploring doing the upgrade myself and ironically the biggest challenge seems to be accessing the electrical cabinet under the front cushion. I have started exploring how to get it all apart, but am definitely not finding all the screws to get the top of the 'box' off. Anyone else dive in on this model of Airstream? My worry most about damaging the sitting frame...
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Old 01-14-2022, 11:19 AM   #2
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Flagstaff , Arizona
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArchBuck View Post
Hey all, great resources here.

First, we have a 2021 RTB 25' FC and are looking to upgrade from the 1000 watt inverter/2x AGM batteries to 3000 watt inverter and lithium. I am 90% sure I can fit the inverter (Victron) and 3x batteries (battleborn) in the existing electrical cabinet. Worst case, I would move the inverter to the external front drivers side cabinet.

My questions are a couple:

1 - Anyone in the midwest used a company to do the install / upgrade? If so, who and would you recommend them? The companies I am finding are almost all East or West coast.

2 - Exploring doing the upgrade myself and ironically the biggest challenge seems to be accessing the electrical cabinet under the front cushion. I have started exploring how to get it all apart, but am definitely not finding all the screws to get the top of the 'box' off. Anyone else dive in on this model of Airstream? My worry most about damaging the sitting frame...
1. AMSolar has an affiliate installer in Iowa.

2. My tops had staples holding down them down in addition to screws so you may have to pry it off.

No experience with RB models for your placement issues.
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Old 01-14-2022, 11:34 PM   #3
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Make sure you have the ability to circulate air for the inverter. If placed in the seating area in your photos I'd add venting (2) and place a small fan on one to draw air into the cabinet. Best for the batteries also, since they can produce a little heat under a heavy load.

You might find placing the inverter in your o/s storage less intrusive. The inverter/charger fan can be a bit noisy when on, but again make sure you get some air circulation. The down side is the heavier cabling that needs to be between the batteries and the Victron unit and getting it across the trailer.
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Old 01-15-2022, 05:02 AM   #4
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I bought my Victron from these folks in Mt. Vernon OH

https://www.boundless-ps.com

Even though I did the install on this myself, they were incredibly supportive and walked me through the entire process. I'd certainly use them to do an install if I was looking for an installer.
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Old 01-15-2022, 07:50 AM   #5
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I am planning on doing the same on our new 25RBT in the next few months. Here is a great example: https://www.airforums.com/forums/f53...ll-228323.html
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:00 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 57Vintage View Post
You might find placing the inverter in your o/s storage less intrusive. The inverter/charger fan can be a bit noisy when on, but again make sure you get some air circulation. The down side is the heavier cabling that needs to be between the batteries and the Victron unit and getting it across the trailer.
I've been thinking a lot about this and am 90% sure I will mount the inverter in the o/s storage... it will leave me with more space to add additional battery bank in the future without large modifications.
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:18 AM   #7
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I've been thinking a lot about this and am 90% sure I will mount the inverter in the o/s storage... it will leave me with more space to add additional battery bank in the future without large modifications.
Have you calculated how the weight distribution of the new components will affect your trailer and tongue weight?
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:20 AM   #8
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Have you calculated how the weight distribution of the new components will affect your trailer and tongue weight?
No, but that's a good idea, I will run the numbers. I should be more than good, I have a couple hundred pounds of wiggle room on my tongue weight even after the bed of my truck is full. And this should push the weight closer to the axles on the trailer, if anything reducing tongue weight.
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:28 AM   #9
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Hi

Regardless of where the inverter goes, it needs to pull cold air in one end and push the hot air out the other end. The hot air should not be able to quickly "loop back" to mix with the cold air coming in. With any sort of enclosed box, this loop back is just about guaranteed. Vents (plural) to get air in and out of the box are one solution. Fans plus vents are another.

If you look at the manual, Victron expects some open space around the Multi (as do other manufacturers). Be sure to include this "couple of inches on each side" in your calculations.

Bob
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:29 AM   #10
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Front compartment inverter install

I did my install on a 2015 30RBQ but it looks like the the install area is the same. I removed the top of the box for access. It a few screws and a boat load of staples holding it on. I installed a Multiplus II which takes an enormous amount of space, the multiplus is taller but has a much smaller footprint. If the compartment measurements are the same, you'll see battle born batteries fit east west in that space. You might want to consider the GC3 from battle born if the measurements dictate a better use of the space.
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:38 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by dsatwork View Post
I did my install on a 2015 30RBQ but it looks like the the install area is the same. I removed the top of the box for access. It a few screws and a boat load of staples holding it on. I installed a Multiplus II which takes an enormous amount of space, the multiplus is taller but has a much smaller footprint. If the compartment measurements are the same, you'll see battle born batteries fit east west in that space. You might want to consider the GC3 from battle born if the measurements dictate a better use of the space.
Thank you very much, you're the second person to mention Staples that I need to work through. I can't pull my entire cabinet out, because my fuse panel and circuit breakers are all part of that cabinet. Thus I'm hoping to only take off the top as you have in the picture. I think I'll move the inverter outside, but I love seeing that the batteries fit just fine height wise, as they will go in that cabinet. Thanks again!
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:57 AM   #12
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Have you calculated how the weight distribution of the new components will affect your trailer and tongue weight?
I don't have any experience with rear bed versions of AS but I think it is right to be very careful of putting a lot of mass so far away from the trailer center of gravity. It is more than just getting the tongue weight too low, there is also the pendulum effect of wagging a lot of weight very distant from the C/G of the trailer.

FB or RB when you have a choice adding heavy components it is probably best to select locations closer to the trailer C/G.
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Old 01-15-2022, 09:59 AM   #13
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I don't have any experience with rear bed versions of AS but I think it is right to be very careful of putting a lot of mass so far away from the trailer center of gravity. It is more than just getting the tongue weight too low, there is also the pendulum effect of wagging a lot of weight very distant from the C/G of the trailer.
Ahh, you all are referring to to LOW of tongue weight. That'll be a little bit harder to figure out... But good call. I'll do some digging/thinking on it.
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Old 01-15-2022, 10:07 AM   #14
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I did this installation and my setup looks the same as yours. I could never find a way to remove the top of the freeware cabinet, but the top over the outside storage, lower cabinets and the original inverter installation location requires removal of the obvious screws on the top going into the aluminum and then pry it off as there are only small staples holding it at that point. There is some adhesive felt at the junction of the outside storage and the top panel that you will need to carefully peel off once you have it lifted up. I installed the Multiplus in the original inverter location. The airspace there communicates with the outside storage as the divider sections do not make contact with the top all the way around. I reinstalled the top with pan head screws to make future access easier. I ended up needing to access the power center from the front and the remaining system through the access points you have in your photo. There is a metal wire chase in the airside storage that you. An remove to pull wires.

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Old 01-16-2022, 06:51 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArchBuck View Post
Ahh, you all are referring to to LOW of tongue weight. That'll be a little bit harder to figure out... But good call. I'll do some digging/thinking on it.
Hi

Tongue weight is only vaguely related to sway. It's the higher order moments of inertia that get you. ( yes that's going to head everybody back to that dusty physics book on the shelf). More or less: the distribution of weight matters. Something to the rear matters a lot more than you would think it does. Put a chunk right on the bumper and a brick on the hitch, your tongue weight is fine. That lump of weight way back there still creates a sway issue .....

Bob
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Old 01-16-2022, 07:32 AM   #16
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I have a 2013 25’ Rear Bed Flying Cloud.

Was able to remove the complete front cabinet to access the electrical area when I installed VictronConnect shunt. Electrical components were not attached to the cabinet and we’re not disturbed.

As I recall, screw locations were; along the cabinet door screwing into the floor, on the left side joining the other cabinet and along the top through the aluminum angle into the side wall.


Greg
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Old 01-16-2022, 09:15 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by greghoro View Post
I have a 2013 25’ Rear Bed Flying Cloud.

Was able to remove the complete front cabinet to access the electrical area when I installed VictronConnect shunt. Electrical components were not attached to the cabinet and we’re not disturbed.

As I recall, screw locations were; along the cabinet door screwing into the floor, on the left side joining the other cabinet and along the top through the aluminum angle into the side wall.


Greg
Awesome - thank you!
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Old 01-17-2022, 07:09 AM   #18
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Place a thick cloth between the cabinet and the front inner wall to prevent scratching the wall when pulling out the cabinet.

Greg
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Old 01-18-2022, 06:18 AM   #19
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2021 25' Flying Cloud
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Place a thick cloth between the cabinet and the front inner wall to prevent scratching the wall when pulling out the cabinet.

Greg
Great tip... I would not have been happy if I had scratched things... and nor would my wife!
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Old 01-19-2022, 09:34 AM   #20
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Hi

Victron seems to want to see ~5" or more of clear space on both ends of the Multi. That includes being clear of wire bundles. The beast is a bit long already. Adding another 10" simply makes it more of a beast to mount.

Bob
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