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Old 06-13-2017, 07:05 PM   #1
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When this was first posted, I just took a quick read and bookmarked. Last night I set down and read it all the way through. All I can say is I really feel for the guy, it has to be mind boggling...the B of your dreams - turns to into a nightmare...and you are making payments and running your butt off to get it serviced. When I read that Roadtrek Headquarters finally stepped in an said "enough" and made the offer of his old RT Ranger back or a new '16 CS, I thought he was finally getting it settled. I finished reading his problematic '16 and said this will not set well for Roadtrek/Hymer when the word starts getting around. I wonder what happened after the Tampa RV Show....which brand did he go after? The ironic part of this is, my wife was really wanted that Model; I kept arguing it had to much "new to us" technology. I was adamant about going Chevy, forget the solar panels and under the hood genny. I wanted that 210 with all the whistles and bells, just like we had in our 190, but updated. My old '05 never seen an RV Dealer, and we bought on-line, sight unseen....did the exact same thing with this '15 210.....and except for some stupid things, it is doing everything I expected. I hope that Roadtrek/Hymer get these super items thoroughly tested before they put them out at the high sales price. It sort of reminds me of Microsoft, put a new program out and let the user complain to do the updates. Ron
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Old 06-13-2017, 07:10 PM   #2
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in a manner the market is being driven by buyers who "think" the latest is the greatest.
and I feel sorry for them- when they leap into a new unproven system- they become the tester.


I'm with you, totally satisfied with the proven old tech of our 2006 PW Lexor on a Chev.
forgiving of the limitations- we knew most of this going in


and this used unit was less than 1/2 what we had budgeted for a B

Mike
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:41 PM   #3
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Amen.

Nothing proves the KISS theory better than the recent RT Fiasco.

All this expense and trouble so "you can boondock for days"...

Something Vanners have been doing quite comfortably for decades...
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Old 06-14-2017, 05:59 PM   #4
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An interesting read and confirmation of Roadtrek's lack of engineering know how in their designs. I don't think you can make an AGM battery system that will fit in a B-van to reliably support A/C operation. The inherent voltage sag when making a heavy discharge from AGM's just doesn't work.

The only manufacturer that is currently making a functional all electric B-van is Advanced RV, with big Lithium batteries. If you want that capability you pay the price.


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Old 06-14-2017, 06:10 PM   #5
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Default Nail on the head

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Amen.

Nothing proves the KISS theory better than the recent RT Fiasco.

All this expense and trouble so "you can boondock for days"...

Something Vanners have been doing quite comfortably for decades...
Thank you!! I have been saying this all along!

The last thing I want in a van is super complicated technology that I cant fix myself.

No place in the back country for unreliable crap that needs a super tech with 3 multi-meters to fix.

If you can master the technology yourself like some on this forum, then I say have at it, but for an old river guide like me, the ultimate in sophistication is simplicity itself!!
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Old 06-14-2017, 06:15 PM   #6
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I don't think you can make an AGM battery system that will fit in a B-van to reliably support A/C operation. The inherent voltage sag when making a heavy discharge from AGM's just doesn't work.
My 440Ah 4-battery AGM setup driving an Outback 2800W inverter works fine running the A/C for up to two hours. If you are looking for all-night operation, that is a different kettle of fish.
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Old 06-14-2017, 07:26 PM   #7
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Thanks for posting this.
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Old 06-14-2017, 07:38 PM   #8
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I often see the hunger for new and different ventures within DIY community especially in the electrical power implementations. Folks without engineering backgrounds tackle big Li battery banks with more difficult controls than AGM, electric water heaters, persistent fear of an old LPG technology but eager to jump to not well-known Li charging territories. In midst of hunting for the newest thingies folks forget about the fundamental objective - the joy of camping life.

From the get go in my conversion I decided to forgo LPG in lieu of electrical/diesel/alcohol power. While getting the diesel-powered water heater working I begin to regret that decision, I have a good diesel water heating working system now but it wasnít easy.

I see a big difference in engineering content between EU and NA in manufacturing RVs, letís see how many staple guns can you find in these 2 videos.


or this previously posted



or this to see different approaches and solutions in EU and NA

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Old 06-15-2017, 01:05 AM   #9
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My 440Ah 4-battery AGM setup driving an Outback 2800W inverter works fine running the A/C for up to two hours. If you are looking for all-night operation, that is a different kettle of fish.

Interesting - how is your SOC after two hours of A/C use?



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Old 06-16-2017, 10:43 PM   #10
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Interesting - how is your SOC after two hours of A/C use?



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50%. That is when I turn it off.
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Old 06-16-2017, 11:15 PM   #11
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50%. That is when I turn it off.

OK - thanks, good to know. Probably something you don't want to do every day considering how long it takes to get AGMs back to 100%.

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Old 06-17-2017, 12:13 AM   #12
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OK - thanks, good to know. Probably something you don't want to do every day considering how long it takes to get AGMs back to 100%.

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I rarely run it for 2 hours, but 45-60 minutes at a trailhead after a long sweaty day hike on a hot day can be bliss. I have a second engine alternator, so the drive back to camp typically gets me close enough to fully-charged for mid-trip purposes.
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Old 06-17-2017, 05:26 AM   #13
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I'm currently in Moab, Tried a different method out in the desert, rather than run the 2800 Onan to power the AC, I alternate by running the vans AC while charging the lithiums with the vans alternator , and running the AC on the batteries for a few hours with a little help from the 400watts of solar. I'm also saving power by turning off the AC when it cycles off rather than letting the fan run.
Sun screens on the outside of the windows, insulated panels on the inside, plus they are dual pane with ceramic tint. I'm still working on a few areas of improvement which are the remaining metal surfaces still uninsulated. The extra effort concerning the windows lowered the amount of time the AC needs to run significantly.
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Old 06-17-2017, 01:56 PM   #14
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I'm currently in Moab, Tried a different method out in the desert, rather than run the 2800 Onan to power the AC, I alternate by running the vans AC while charging the lithiums with the vans alternator , and running the AC on the batteries for a few hours with a little help from the 400watts of solar. I'm also saving power by turning off the AC when it cycles off rather than letting the fan run.
Sun screens on the outside of the windows, insulated panels on the inside, plus they are dual pane with ceramic tint. I'm still working on a few areas of improvement which are the remaining metal surfaces still uninsulated. The extra effort concerning the windows lowered the amount of time the AC needs to run significantly.

If I spend a lot of time out in the desert,
I would install an awning on both sides of the RV.


I agree that running the chassis AC while charging is a good idea.

What RPM are you running the engine?
I have seen people using a "Redneck High-idle Device" to increase the RPM so that the alternator can raise the output to an optimal level, at the same time making the AC run more efficiently.


Redneck High-idle Device = a stick

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Old 06-17-2017, 04:39 PM   #15
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OK - thanks, good to know. Probably something you don't want to do every day considering how long it takes to get AGMs back to 100%.

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2012 Sprinter 3500 Extended converted B-Van by Airstream
We don't ever do it, but my initial tests showed the same as Avanti at about 2 hours of AC and 50%, if starting full. It will take about 1.5 hours or so to recover that many ah driving, but only if it was from 20% SOC to 70%, so the AGMs willaccept that much the entire time. 50% to full is many hours. The good is if you have 300+ watts of solar and good sun, it will help get more nearly full.

If we are hot when we get back to the van from hiking, we just use the van AC too cool off. Sit in the front seats with all the output right on us.
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Old 06-17-2017, 09:32 PM   #16
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We don't ever do it, but my initial tests showed the same as Avanti at about 2 hours of AC and 50%, if starting full. It will take about 1.5 hours or so to recover that many ah driving, but only if it was from 20% SOC to 70%, so the AGMs willaccept that much the entire time. 50% to full is many hours. The good is if you have 300+ watts of solar and good sun, it will help get more nearly full.

If we are hot when we get back to the van from hiking, we just use the van AC too cool off. Sit in the front seats with all the output right on us.
As I implied, I don't worry about getting to 100% every single cycle. Getting from 50 to, say, 85 doesn't take nearly as long, and will get us through the night. Plus, as you say, solar can cover as well.

As for sitting in the front, I guess I am just paranoid about unnecessary idling of our sprinter.
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Old 06-17-2017, 10:49 PM   #17
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I haven't been able to get the temp gauge above normal no matter the conditions on this desert trip. I just drove past Vail Co and it still read normal with the engine high rev WO 65 MPH at over 10k ft elevation. I'm impressed with the Promaster engine.
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Old 06-17-2017, 11:21 PM   #18
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I've never encountered a night where I felt I needed air conditioning with the exception of three nights in over a dozen years. One was in South Padre Island where humidity got to us and everything was wet rather than heat and we were drying out the B instead of comfort for heat, but that was in an electric hookup campground. The two other nights were unusual September nights in Kansas that exceeded 100 degrees. One night I slept with the back doors and sliding doors open (with screens) just too test if it were satisfactory. I slept but it was uneasy being open. It's funny I felt that way after 40 years of tent camping. The other night was when we discovered our air conditioning did not work and it was a thousand dollar fix and we just grinned and bared it with doors open again. They were non electric COE sites on two different trips to Kansas. Note to myself: avoid Kansas.

We generally RV in early spring and fall. In the summer we stick to the upper midwest of Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan and it is rarely uncomfortable especially the naturally air conditioned Lake Superior area. I'm just one to try to follow 70 degrees F. as much as possible with our trip planning. That's what a B is for. Move if it is uncomfortable. Our summer trip to Alaska was air conditioning free. October in Florida is wonderful. The southwest in the spring is comfortably warm in the day and cools off as much as 40 degrees in the night.

We have a B where we theoretically get through the night with air conditioning with about 5 hours initially and then Autogen (2nd alternator start). But I can't for the love of me figure out why anyone would want to do that.

Anyway, that is why my electric requirements comments are generally devoid of air conditioning talk.
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Old 06-20-2017, 12:48 PM   #19
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We often say "if we were building our RV custom we would put in a sun roof over the AC unit". I do not see us ever using more than the fan........now, I know this isn't practical for resale value but I can't imagine using it. The heat is another story.
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Old 06-20-2017, 01:05 PM   #20
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We often say "if we were building our RV custom we would put in a sun roof over the AC unit". I do not see us ever using more than the fan........now, I know this isn't practical for resale value but I can't imagine using it. The heat is another story.

No AC?

That's quite a statement by someone who lives in FL.


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