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Old 09-14-2019, 07:00 PM   #41
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Thanks John, great information and very much appreciated! Thank you thomas, I do believe we have the same converter. Pics below. I was doing more research and thinking about replacing this with a invertor/ charger and getting a 200ah lithium battery. I have more to learn though before I go this route.
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Old 09-14-2019, 07:07 PM   #42
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Got to put some time I to the trailer today. Posting update pics. Got the floor in and the front paneling today.
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Old 09-14-2019, 07:42 PM   #43
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Got to put some time I to the trailer today. Posting update pics. Got the floor in and the front paneling today.
Wow! Your on a roll now! Good work. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 09-14-2019, 08:12 PM   #44
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I was doing more research and thinking about replacing this with a invertor/ charger and getting a 200ah lithium battery. I have more to learn though before I go this route.
If you want to, you can use the old fuse holder and feed the board from a new power converter. OR just get a new power converter with fuses and breaker slots in it.

You mentioned "inverter/charger" did you mean inverter, like using 12 VDC to create 120 VAC? Or was it a typo and you are looking into a "converter/charger" uses 120 VAC shore power to create 12 VDC?

A 200 AH "lithium" battery. They have come on the scene lately as the new thing. I know you are starting the search and learning curve on this. Have you checked the pricing on them? Many are 4 decimal place in cost to the left of the decimal point per battery.

Many of us use lead acid deep cycle batteries and properly maintain them. Going 7 years on a well maintained lead acid deep cycle battery and only discharging it down to 50% does work. I have been using these.

Some have gone to AGM batteries. They cost more than lead acid and I can't comment on the performance not having used them.

Lithium being new to the RV scene has some advantages of the new technology. It also comes with an all new way from lead acid batteries on how to maintain that type of battery, the power draw down before recharging and how and when to recharge it. For the new technology they so far, cost the most. Many times more than the older technology. Hopefully these will come down on cost as times goes on.

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Old 09-15-2019, 06:04 AM   #45
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Great information John thank you!
I was thinking perhaps something like this?

https://www.homedepot.com/p/1-500-Wa...BoCV58QAvD_BwE

It's an inverter and charger and ats. What I dont fully understand is, will this still power the 12v lights, water pump ect? It has terminals for the a/c outlets only I think.


Was possibly considering this battery. Its 180 lithium phosphate. 540.00 from China. Others in youtube have have had decent luck with these for various applications.

Any thoughts/suggestions on the above/below?

https://m.aliexpress.com/item/328602...A1568545097485
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Old 09-15-2019, 10:05 AM   #46
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It's an inverter and charger and ats. What I dont fully understand is, will this still power the 12v lights, water pump ect? It has terminals for the a/c outlets only I think.
No, the DC output is only for battery charging, and will self-adjust depending on the battery's level of charge. Wouldn't be at all suitable for powering your 12V devices.

It's unlikely you'll find what you're looking for at any of the big box stores. It's a product made pretty much only for RV/off-grid application--not really their target market.
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Old 09-15-2019, 10:22 AM   #47
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This is a good conversation for me as I haven't setup a longer lasting DC power supply yet..I too have looked at AliExpress for batteries take forever on shipping but ordering soon they would be ready for me install during our off season...
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Old 09-15-2019, 06:34 PM   #48
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Thanks Tin, I'll probably put the original converter back until I learn what will be best. I guess it will need to be a combination of invertor tied into the converter if I want both ac while powering the 12v on board stuff. Too much money to put out there until I'm fluent in exactly what I'll need. Draughty, if you end up ordering batteries from Ali, please report back on your experience, I'll be really interested in that. Today's progress was getting the flooring put down and a couple of bench pieces and the rear wall panels.
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Old 09-15-2019, 07:54 PM   #49
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Man, you are flying on that rebuild!

I plan to install an inverter, probably next year--but solar comes first. AC power is pretty low priority for me.

When I do get around to it, I'll probably use a standalone inverter, with a switch to flip the AC source for those circuits between the inverter and the converter. Shouldn't be difficult to isolate the DC section.

I don't see much point in having a battery charging output on an inverter in this context. It takes a battery to power the inverter in the first place, so you'd be discharging one battery in order to charge another.
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Old 09-16-2019, 05:58 AM   #50
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[QUOTE=Tinstaafl;150079

I don't see much point in having a battery charging output on an inverter in this context. It takes a battery to power the inverter in the first place, so you'd be discharging one battery in order to charge another.[/QUOTE]

True, perhaps in the scenario of a inverter/charger/ats the d/c components are hard wired to the battery, the unit charges the battery while on shore power and the ats switches to draw a/c power from shore or the batteries depending if its plugged in or not?? Trying to figure out how the application for these units are applicable...
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Old 09-16-2019, 06:50 AM   #51
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Here ya go. A quick google for "inverter charger" turned this up:

https://invertersrus.com/product-cat...rter-chargers/

That's the sort of critter you need. You'd first want to make a decision on what battery(s) you'll be using, then dive into the specs to ensure your charger of choice has the proper intelligent circuitry to handle that.
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Old 09-16-2019, 12:24 PM   #52
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Wowser!!! You are making remarkable progress. Looks really good too! I am inspired. Maybe I will get around to repairing the back of mine. Your pics are going help a lot!

Congrats! It looks like you are almost done.
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Old 09-16-2019, 09:19 PM   #53
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Great information John thank you!
I was thinking perhaps something like this?

https://www.homedepot.com/p/1-500-Wa...BoCV58QAvD_BwE

It's an inverter and charger and ats. What I dont fully understand is, will this still power the 12v lights, water pump ect? It has terminals for the a/c outlets only I think.


Was possibly considering this battery. Its 180 lithium phosphate. 540.00 from China. Others in youtube have have had decent luck with these for various applications.

Any thoughts/suggestions on the above/below?

https://m.aliexpress.com/item/328602...A1568545097485

Hi Yellowjacket,

As was said, that inverter/charger is not intended to power the camper, only charge the battery. I can't speak to the china battery.

As to what RV application needs a 120 VAC supply when the shore power goes out, some of the newer campers are coming with 120 VAC powered compressor fridges verses the gas/electric absorption fridge. In this case, they have to create 120 VAC to run the fridge when shore power is no longer on for whatever reason. This is where they have an integrated inverter as part of their camper power setup. Motorhomes have done this with the fridge for a while. They have very large battery banks too and the motorhome has the weight carrying capacity to hold all of it. It is not practical and even doable in some smaller campers due to lack of cargo capacity.

You are looking into some very large equipment. Not trying to talk you out of it, just trying to caution.

First things,

1. Have to determined your 12 volt DC load needs? How many amp hours of 12VDC do you need before you recharge? (this helps create part of the battery bank sizing)

2. What are you going to use to recharge the battery bank with and how many hours a day will it be providing recharge power and how much power? (the recharge has to fit the battery bank needs)

3. You are mentioning wanting to create off grid 120 VAC. How many amps of 120 VAC are you needing per day or one time use before recharge combined with the loads from item 1? (this is another part of sizing up the battery bank)

4. Battery technology, what is the driver making you want to go to lithium?

My point being, it really helps if you sort out your power needs are first. Then figure out what equipment you need to fill that need. Next is, figure out if you really want to spend that much money creating it? The plus minus want list may change after the cost comes in.

And maybe to help the cost spending, do the ultimate install in stages, but first figure out what the total plan is to not underbuy or over buy along the way.

I happen to have a fellow camping buddy with some of what you are mentioning coming to visit us this week. He is from AZ where the sun shines a lot, every day, all day.

He has an onboard generator, roof mounted solar, a stand alone transfer switch, a large battery bank, stand alone converter and a new "smart" inverter downstream of the ATS that will auto detect if shore power is on and start creating 120 VAC from the battery bank if shore power goes out. He has not yet worked out all the bugs of his smart inverter. I'll see this setup this week and will report back on what he has found along the way. He has some serious power infrastructure that he has created over the last 2 years. But they camp off grid in the desert a lot. No hookups, not even a campground and it's hot out there. He has a 10,000# GVWR toy hauler to hold this setup. His camper is a bit bigger than many of our Sunlines. Both with enough roof space for the solar and cargo capacity to hold all the equipment.

Your inquiry is a great thread all by itself. When you get back to sorting it out, consider starting a new post on how to power up the damper.

Hope this helps.

John
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Old 09-16-2019, 09:29 PM   #54
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WOW, your floor looks great. And your buzzing right along on this restoration!



Your doing great work and super thanks for sharing with us. Really neat seeing it grew from nothing to what you are now creating.

Keep up the good work!
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Old 09-19-2019, 12:38 PM   #55
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Hi John,
My thoughts on the lithium was primarily around weight and the ability to drain a lithium battery down to 0 without harm. A 100ah lithium weighs a fraction of lead acid and one 100ah would be the equivalent of 2 100ah lead acid that can only be drained to 50%. Also I've heard that lithium charges much quicker, so I thought perhaps a generator wouldn't have to run as long to top it off. However, I really cant say how much my power needs will be until I really get out there and see. I've decided to start simple until I get to that point before I consider any larger investments. I also have no idea how much I'll be dry camping vs hookups. I've never owned a camper before and live in the north east. I'm not yet familiar with the options available and what my family will enjoy more. You've given me a ton of food for thought! Thank you!
I put the siding back on on the divers side ( I think the proper terminology may be curb side?) Putting the windows back in, I opted to use 1" hex head screws with a metal and rubber washer to hold a better seal over the dicor tape. The problem is with the washers on, the plastic molding wont snap onto the window frame. I dont really mind aesthetically and plan to paint the camper and window frames. Do you think it is better for protection to have the screws with rubber washers, or the molding. Based on the condition of the screws I took out, the molding didnt look like it added too much protection. Has your friend arrived with his ultimate power setup yet?
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Old 09-23-2019, 08:54 PM   #56
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Hi Yellowjacket,

Some thoughts on your questions.


Quote:
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I put the siding back on on the divers side ( I think the proper terminology may be curb side?)

Putting the windows back in, I opted to use 1" hex head screws with a metal and rubber washer to hold a better seal over the dicor tape. The problem is with the washers on, the plastic molding wont snap onto the window frame. I dont really mind aesthetically and plan to paint the camper and window frames.

Do you think it is better for protection to have the screws with rubber washers, or the molding. Based on the condition of the screws I took out, the molding didnt look like it added too much protection.

Has your friend arrived with his ultimate power setup yet?
Unless I have it mixed up, the term curbside is the right side, (passenger side and also called the door side). Streetside is then the left side, (drivers side and also called the non door side)

On the window flanges and using rubber/steel washer headed screws, as far as sealing out the water, I agree that fastener setup is better then the standard RV screw. Long term, (could be 20 plus years) the rubber gasket "might" start to break down from UV exposure. I say might as I never really used them in an RV setting to know for sure.

And as you stated, the vinyl screw cover strip will then no longer fit in the flange channel with the rubber washer screw heads. This one will come down to a personal choice. For sure, the rubber washer setup will help stop water getting to the screw threads better than the vinyl strip. If you end up painting the window frame and all the screw heads, it may not look that bad and blend in better. The paint on the rubber washer exposed edge will help on UV breakdown.

If you do use the a screw with no washer, then the vinyl strip will add some level of water protection. The level of protection is basically better then not having it. The not best, is leaving the standard screw heads exposed with no cover. That combo over time will give a higher leak potential. Again on a window or door flange.

If your camper has a gutter rail at the roof line, then the discussion is totally different. In that application from what I have seen, the vinyl screw cover is not a good thing to have on. In the gutter rail area, there a better ways to seal the screws from getting water infected and not use the vinyl cover.

On the lithium battery, inverter/charger topic,

I did meet up with my buddy last week and saw up close his new power setup. WOW.... I had time to talk to him about his Battle Born qty 3, 100 amp/ hr lithium battery setup, his Victron 3,000 watt smart inverter/charger, Onan 4,000 watt generator & 640 watt solar array with his Victron 50 amp MMPT charge controller setup, 2 automatic transfer switches along with his smart phone power monitoring system. We had a good long talk on this. He did a top flight install himself including making his own 4/0 gauge cables all hydraulically crimped. His setup is very advanced and has a lot of really nice features. And the reason you listed for lithium batteries are all valid. For him, and the way he camps, he could justify it.

There is a reality to this though, this high end setup for sure comes with a price that needs to be rationalized over the other types of off grid setup's. When I get some time, unless you make it their first, I will create a post on using lithium batteries and the inverter/charger system for open discussion. This is the new way to do off grid. How far one takes it, should be totally thought through and altered to meet their needs which technology that is right for your application/needs and budget.

Keep up the good work. Looking forward to your next set of pics.

John
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Old 09-24-2019, 07:59 AM   #57
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Hi Yellowjacket,





Unless I have it mixed up, the term curbside is the right side, (passenger side and also called the door side). Streetside is then the left side, (drivers side and also called the non door side)




If your camper has a gutter rail at the roof line, then the discussion is totally different. In that application from what I have seen, the vinyl screw cover is not a good thing to have on. In the gutter rail area, there a better ways to seal the screws from getting water infected and not use the vinyl cover.

On the lithium battery, inverter/charger topic,


There is a reality to this though, this high end setup for sure comes with a price that needs to be rationalized over the other types of off grid setup's. When I get some time, unless you make it their first, I will create a post on using lithium batteries and the inverter/charger system for open discussion. This is the new way to do off grid. How far one takes it, should be totally thought through and altered to meet their needs which technology that is right for your application/needs and budget.

John
Hi John,
Thank you very much for the detailed response. Yes, I got that mixed up lol. Streetside was what I was referring to. I will keep the vinyl window covers off and stick with the rubber washer screws. They will be painted when I paint the camper exterior, probably won't be quite as aesthetically pleasing as the covers, but will most likely blend ok. Yes, my camper has the gutters at the top of the streetside and curbside. If I understand you correctly, you are referring to a vinyl cover covering the screws on the gutter itself? On my camper there is no cover on the gutters and the screw heads are exposed. I will be replacing those with the new washer screws as well.

I just ordered a 100aH LiPo battery. I ordered it directly from the factory from a company called Everwin tech for $390.00 with shipping. I believe they are the manufacture/supplier to Renogy for the 100Ah lithium batteries they sell. It should be here in 2-3 weeks. I'll report back on my experience with it once it arrives. I will probably start a new thread on that and a new charger, or charger/inverter setup once I nail down what those components will be.

No additional picture worthy progress yet. I've got insulation in and the aluminum siding back on on both the curb and street side. Front, back, windows, gutters, storage compartments and lights next. After that, I'll begin the cosmetic overhaul of the interior.

Thanks again to you and others for all the help.
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Old 09-24-2019, 07:23 PM   #58
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So I'm still stuck on fully understanding how I would potentially upgrade from my old converter with integrated fuses to a inverter/charger unit. I have been reading various manuals from different inverter/chargers and understand their installation as follows: place battery as close as possible to the inverter/charger. For models with built in ATS, connect A/C power main to inverter input terminals, connect A/C output to main A/C panel breaker. Connect battery to inverter D/C input terminal with inline fuse. What I can't find information on is, how would I wire in a new D/C fuse panel to power all the on board D/C equipment of the camper? None of these models have a D/C output. Would the new D/C fuse panel be wired directly to the battery as well; as in the battery would have two pairs of leads on it, one to the inverter/charger and one to the D/C fuse panel??? Any feedback is greatly appreciated.
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Old 09-24-2019, 08:10 PM   #59
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What I can't find information on is, how would I wire in a new D/C fuse panel to power all the on board D/C equipment of the camper? None of these models have a D/C output. Would the new D/C fuse panel be wired directly to the battery as well; as in the battery would have two pairs of leads on it, one to the inverter/charger and one to the D/C fuse panel??? Any feedback is greatly appreciated.
It's unlikely you will, because what you're doing is a custom configuration.

You can connect your fuse panel at the battery, at the cable connections on the inverter, or anywhere in between--it makes little practical difference.

If you really want to nerd out, locating the panel near the battery and connecting directly to it will provide power [to the panel] with the least voltage drop. However, there's still the voltage drop in the individual circuits between the panel and the loads to consider. Since those circuits use smaller wire, they would tend to have more loss than if the panel is centrally located.

Between that consideration and the fact that all of your DC wiring is already run to a single point (the old converter), it makes sense to locate the new panel in the same area, with heavy gauge wire connecting it to the nearest heavy gauge source of DC.
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Old 09-24-2019, 11:11 PM   #60
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So I'm still stuck on fully understanding how I would potentially upgrade from my old converter with integrated fuses to a inverter/charger unit.
I'll try and help, but we need more info on what it is your are wanting to accomplish when your all done to make this a better answer. What are you trying to power with the AC inverter?

You seem to want to still go for a inverter/charger setup at this time. What we know is you bought qty 1, 100ah lithium battery. OK, got that, but then where does the inverter come into play? What are you trying to power with it and for how long? And what will recharge the battery when you are off the grid using the inverter?

Here are the basics of what you asked.

On a high amperage battery charging setup, the battery charger would be mounted as close as practical to the battery and use large amperage cables to join the battery and the charger. This allows the lowest voltage drop with the smallest sized cables and still allows large amperage charge to the battery. This concept is not the normal Sunline method of how even the newest campers where setup.

Take my 32 foot camper for example. This also applies to a 21 foot camper and even your camper. Sunline put the power converter in the back of my camper, the farthest it could be from the battery. It fit the floor plan. Yours may not be in the back, it is where the floor plan allowed it to fit.

They then ran no. 6 awg wire from the power converter to the battery and they fused it with a 30 amp breaker and fuses. Yet they installed a 60 amp power converter. I have never tipped the 30 amp battery fuse. The most the battery can get is about 20 to 25 amps as the distance is so long and the cable so small. This same setup exists on a T1950 camper.

To fix this issue and to obtain high amperage battery charging, the camper DC fuse panel can stay at the back of the camper or where ever it is located. Move the actual power converter to the front of the camper very close to the battery. Leave the existing 30 amp power feed to the fuse panel from the battery. But install new heavy short as practical cables between the battery and the 60 amp converter. My upgraded Progressive Dynamics power converter then can pump all 60 amps into the battery when charging if needed and it controls the charging. A new 120 VAC power line needs to be installed from the back of the camper shore line power connection to the front area to power the converter. The only reason to go through all this, is to gain faster high amperage battery charging from a generator with less run time.

I am in the process of doing the above, I have run the new 120 VAC line and left it unhooked, just I have not moved the power converter yet.

In your case, your internal DC wires and shower power comes into your older power converter. See here




I'm assuming you are going to abandon the older power converter. Your exiting DC wiring is only 4 circuits. The 4 black wires going to the glass fuses. The question now comes, are you trying to use the old glass fuse panel or would you be getting a new fuse panel?

You still need a fuse panel and it needs a main fuse feeding it. Most likely it would be a 30 amp fuse at the battery. You can use the same heavy wire you have now from the battery to the fuse panel. Some fuse panels also have one at the fuse panel. The 30 amp one up at the battery, protects the battery from a short on the wire between the fuse panel and the battery and over current from the 4 fuse circuits. Check you have no 6 awg wire feeding the fuse panel.

The battery charger/inverter if your still going that route, that needs to be located. Lets talk the charging part first. Since you are not doing an integrated power converter with a fuse panel, the inverter/charger can go in a different location. If you are after fast high amperage battery charging, then it needs to be located where it can get good air ventilation on the inverter/charger and as close to the battery as practical. Heavy battery cables go between the battery and the charger/inverter. This charging circuit is all fused to protect the battery etc.

Now the inverter and the ATS. The ATS in this case is to drop out the incoming shore line AC connection so that when you start inverting AC power off the batteries, it does not back feed into the shore line connection. The shore line power needs to be run from where the shore line cable comes into the camper, unhooked off the old circuit breakers to the new location of the inverter/charger. And then run AC power back from the inverter ATS to where the 120 VAC breakers are located to power up the breakers.

The inverter is the brain in this case. When shore line power is live, then the inverter passes 120 VAC through to the circuit breaker box. When shore line power drops out, the inverter ATS switches battery inverted 120 VAC to the breakers and unhooks the shore line connection.

A need for all this to work, is that your battery charger (part of the inverter/charger) is smart enough that it can charge your battery and power the camper 12 VDC items at the same time. When the battery reaches full charge, it tapers down the charging voltage but allows enough current to meet the camper 12 VDC power needs at the lower non charging voltage. The Victron inverter charger setup my camper friend has, allows this to happen. He removed his old power converter when he upgraded to the lithium batteries and the inverter/charger. The inverter/charger is one smart device to sort all this out. His even has a feature if there is low incoming AC line voltage, it will supplement from the battery inversion of AC to boost the voltage in the camper back up to where is needs to be off the batteries.

Hope this helps.

John
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Current Sunlines: 2004 T310SR, 2004 T1950, 2004 T2475, 2007 T2499, 2004 T317SR
Prior Sunlines: 2004 T2499 - Fern Blue
2005 Ford F350 Lariat, 6.8L V10 W/ 4.10 rear axle, CC, Short Bed, SRW. Reese HP trunnion bar hitch W/ HP DC

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