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teamkeira 01-27-2011 10:10 PM

Getting our '75 Sovereign ready to roll! heeeeelp
Hi newbies Kori and John here. We joined the forum right after our 75 Sovereign purchase. We have been just been trying to get everything checked out. We only have a Nautilus dc 24 battery hooked up. Not hooked to real power yet. My first (of many) question is do we need full power for the fridge and air conditioner?

vikx 01-27-2011 10:45 PM

Hi Kori and John, you need 110 power for the air conditioner.

The fridge probably will work on propane only. Sometimes refers need 12 volts to work on gas or electric. 110 is not necessary if you run the fridge on propane. It is necessary if you want to run on the 110 element. Your fridge also might have a 12 volt element.

Aage 01-27-2011 10:58 PM

Howdy and welcome to, TeamKeira! Glad to see you started a new thread for yourselves. This forum will get you answers for all your AS questions, plus just take some time and get used to the search function you will find in the dark blue bar up near the top of the page.

I personally prefer the Google version, it seems faster to me, and will give you lots of results. Everything you will do has already been done many times, so read, read, read, then read some more, and ask questions all along the way.

As for your questions: you only need battery power at the most for your refer (refrigerator), and I -think- the '75 model may not even need that. You do need LP gas though, 'cause they won't run on their reputation! :D

The AC is a different story: it's the heaviest load on your trailer's electrical system, and definitely requires plugging into land power. What's stopping you from doing that? Not near an outlet?

Good luck, but know that the first thing to check out and remedy is leaks. You need to make sure that water won't get in and ruin your lovely silver dream, and just between you and me, I bet you have some right now. Oh, I know you're in California, but you are planning to travel, right? Git at them leaks! :)

Windows, seams, doors, vents, they all need to be tested. The best stuff to get is called Vulkem, but there are others, too. The WORST one to use is silicon! Don't even consider using that, it is horrible as I have found out on Henri, my own trailer. And as well, it's really hard to get off, as a extra bonus kicker.

There are three vents on the roof that are pretty well certain to leak unless the PO (Previous Owner) serviced them recently, so get a ladder and have a look at them first. They look like little chrome stacks, maybe 5" high, 4" in diameter IIRC. A bit of window screen, some rubber gasket, and a tube of Vulkem, and you will get them fixed fast.

There, that's it for today, it's chow time! LOL! :D

Oh, and get us some photos: we LOVE 'em. Befores and afters, and even in-betweeners are great.

wkerfoot 01-27-2011 11:12 PM

If it is the original refrigerator you will not need any electricity to run on propane, you will need 120V to run on electric. I don't know when the manufacturers changed to require 12V to run on either propane of 120V. If you don't have the automatic switchover type you are OK.

How are things at the beach? We are inland in Orange.



Originally Posted by teamkeira (Post 943809)
Hi newbies Kori and John here. We joined the forum right after our 75 Sovereign purchase. We have been just been trying to get everything checked out. We only have a Nautilus dc 24 battery hooked up. Not hooked to real power yet. My first (of many) question is do we need full power for the fridge and air conditioner?

TG Twinkie 01-28-2011 07:28 AM

You will need a 30 amp service as well as the proper sized umbilical cord to run the Air Conditioner. Don't run the air conditioner if you are using a common household extension cord: you could damage the air conditioner. Here are a couple of websites that will give you information on what is needed.
You will need shore power to check the refer on electric.
My trailer is only a year older than yours. The refers may me the same or very similar; if you need help in checking it out let us know. I doubt if you will need shore power to check the refer out on propane.

RV Electric

teamkeira 01-28-2011 02:14 PM

Wow and thanks for the help. We are now in Riverside by March AFB. We have no propane yet. Also the original fridge with manual gas or elect switch at bottom. When we first hooked up the battery the light panel and lights came on. When hub checked the fridge outlet from the outside. No juice to fridge and a couple outlets. We need to get propane here in Riverside somewhere. Do we take the tanks off to fill them? Still looking for the service manual. So much to learn. Hey Orange is really close. Hint hint. We are staying on a friends property only extension cord. We dont have our shower or sinks or toilet working yet either. Less than a week in here. We very new to this.

TG Twinkie 01-28-2011 06:00 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Do the refer controls look like this? If so, I amy be of some help when you get ready to check it out.

teamkeira 01-29-2011 11:14 AM

Yes that is totally our fridge. We are hoping to get propane. Im trying to get pictures put into my posts. Im using my Airstream app for my android. Best thing hub ever downloaded except the picture part. Lol:)

TG Twinkie 01-29-2011 11:24 AM

Good; If you have problems getting it lit in the gas mode. I can take you thru a few things I did to get mine to work. If you click on the picture I posted you should be able to read the instructions I wrote at the bottom.
Do you have shore power yet? (120 volt AC power) If so; check your power panel to see if a circuit breaker is turned off or tripped. You will need 120 volt AC power to run the refer on electric. You don't need shore power to run it on gas.
Whether you are on propane or electric it is important that your trailer be level. Put the level on the floor of the freezer, in both directions (side to side and fore and aft). Don't use the levels on the trailer walls or skin, they may not be accurate enough for the refer to work.

teamkeira 01-29-2011 01:17 PM

Ok. Got tow vehicle wired. No power to lights on the airstream. All bulbs r out. Where do i get all the bulbs?

wasagachris 01-29-2011 02:11 PM


Originally Posted by teamkeira (Post 944470)
Ok. Got tow vehicle wired. No power to lights on the airstream. All bulbs r out. Where do i get all the bulbs?

Team are you using the original umbilical for the trailer. If so airstream had a unique wiring pattern in the seventies and your Tv is probably wired to todays standard pattern. You have two choices either you change around the wires in the umbilical connecter at the front of the trailer or change the position of the wires at the TV end of the umbilical. Does anything else work - brakes,battery charge line,turn signals,brakes lights,running lights or reverse lights.

Aage 01-29-2011 02:26 PM

Just as an aside, when I was hitching up for the first time, I had a similar problem. I called Andy at Can-Am RV and he suggested that I exchange ends of my umbilical, just plug it in the other way 'round.

I nearly fell over when everything worked... :blink:

TG Twinkie 01-29-2011 04:16 PM

You can get bulbs at any auto parts store. I would not change the wiring on the TV. It is wired to todays standard.
Do you have a UCord that plugs in to the trailer as well as the TV or is it hard wired into the trailer?
You will need to clean up the sockets where the bulbs go as well as the ground connection on each of the fixtures.

Splitrock 01-29-2011 04:27 PM

2 Attachment(s)
Here's a couple related pages. Hope they help.

Attachment 120392

Click on the link below:

Attachment 120393

I doubt ALL your bulbs are bad.

TG Twinkie 01-29-2011 05:19 PM

Wire colors
I have the original Owners Manual for my Argosy with the wiring diagram for the exterior lights. Your trailer may be wired the same. If you look at the converter and it is the original; it will have a 30 amp fuse and if a Blue (charge line) wire connects to that fuse holder, chances are your trailer is wired the same.
Now these will be the wires inside the trailer. If you have a receptacle on the front of the trailer, they will be the wires connected to the back of that receptacle.
The Argosy colors are as follows:

Yellow = brakes
White = Ground/common
Blue = charge line
Green = tail and marker lights
Brown = Right turn/Stop
Red = Left turn/Stop.
Black = backup lights

The colors probably will not match the colors in the UCord because it is probably wired to todays standard. Which are as follows:

White = Ground/common
Blue = Brakes
Green = Tail and marker lights
Black = Battery charge line
Red = Left turn/Stop
Brown = Right turn/Stop
Yellow = Auxillary (maybe backup lights)

All that is required is to match the colors to the Function and everything should work out.

teamkeira 01-30-2011 08:28 PM

Hey. Thanks for the offer TG and the wiring and fridge advice everyone. What is an umbillical? I also got lost when talking about switching wiring around. The Tv wiring worls. Nothing on the trailer lit up.

Should have heeded the leaks first advice Aage. Lol We got our first rain today and well we found out where some leaks are. When it dries up guess we will be sealing some windows. The vents stayed dry though. Is silicone really bad? Because thats all we have.

wasagachris 01-30-2011 08:51 PM

Team the umbilical is the cord that connects the TV to the trailer. Are you using the original umbilical. If so it will have to be rewired to match today`s standard pattern on the TV. Airstream had it`s own wiring pattern in the 70`s. It`s just a matter of switching around the wires on the end of the umbilical that goes into the TV connector to match today`s standard pattern. That`s the best way to do it. It keeps the trailer original and only someone with the right umbilical can tow the trailer and your TV will be able to tow any trailer with the standard pattern.

TG Twinkie 01-30-2011 08:57 PM

TV = Tow Vehicle

Umbilical Cord (UCord)= the cable that goes between the TV and the trailer for lights and brakes, etc. It's the 12volt DC system from the TV.

Shore Power Cord = the cord that is plugged into a 120 volt AC outlet providing power to the trailer. Typically from an outlet in an RV park or your house.

Street side = the left hand side of the trailer when viewing it from the rear.

Curb side = the right hand side of the trailer when viewing from the rear.

Galley = Kitchen

Berthing Area = Bedroom

Just a few.

teamkeira 01-30-2011 09:26 PM

Thanks wag n tg. It appears the trailer umbillical was up dated. Still looks old but was replaced or changed.

TG Twinkie 01-30-2011 09:29 PM

U Cord wiring
You first need to determine the colors of the wires in your trailer and their function; ie tail lights etc.

Do you have a receptacle on the front of the trailer to plug the UCord in? Or is there a UCord just hanging out with a plug on it? It may be a cord without a plug.

If you have 120 volt power available and have a battery charger you can identify each 12 volt DC circuit.

On most trailers there are 6 or maybe 7 circuits. 7 if you have backup lights on the trailer and want them to work.

The seven circuits are:
1. tail, clearance (marker) lights and license plate
2. right turn/ brake lights
3. left turn/brake lights
4. Common/Ground
5. battery charge (+12 volts)
6. Electric brakes.
7. Auxillary; sometimes used for backup lights.

Most Ucords you buy today; either prefabricated or self assembled have a different colored wire for each of the 7 circuits. ie Common/Ground is the white wire in the cable. Blue is for electric brakes. etc.

If the TV has the standard 7 pin receptacle, each of those pins has one of the circuits wired to it. They must match the circuits on the trailer for the lights and other devices to function properly.

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