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Old 05-11-2007, 06:41 PM   #1
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Deepseafloyd
Using generator power

Hello,
I have a sunline solaris T-2653 and I connected an 6500 watt generator to the power cord and all that would work was the micro-wave. I checked all the GFI and they were ok. Does anyone have an idea why the air condtioner or lights would not work? I checked the fuses and they were good. We bought this RV a couple of weeks ago and everything at the time was working.

Any input would be greatly appreciated,
Andreas
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Old 05-11-2007, 08:19 PM   #2
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Have you checked to see if any of the breakers are tripped? Is there a way to connect the trailer to shore power to see if the non-working items work? Just my suggestions as I'm not good with electrical stuff.

Kitty
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Old 05-11-2007, 08:31 PM   #3
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Thanks kanyonkitty

Thank you Kanyonkitty for your reply and we did check that. Everything seems to be working once we connected the battery. It seems that even when an external power supply is present, battery power is also needed. It doesn't seem right but maybe someone can provide some in sight. On another note, I also found someone that has experience in flipping axles. Hope to resolve the dragging issue into my driveway.

Again Thanks,
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Old 05-11-2007, 09:23 PM   #4
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Andreas,

You are correct, a battery is needed to complete the connection. Your interior lights and numerous other things run off 12V. They are all wired centrally to the Converter box, which is wired to the battery. When the power cord is plugged in, the power from the cord comes into that converter box, which fires up a battery charger inside that. The charger continuously charges the battery as long as there is something drawing on it. If nothing is running, the charger charges the battery to full and shuts off.

The reason your microwave worked is because it is 110V only. The microwave has a special surround around it to help with ventilation, but the microwave itself is a standard household one, like in your kitchen at home. The microwave plugs into a standard 3 prong outlet in the cabinet and is not set up to run off 12V from the battery. When you plugged in your power cord, the power from the cord also powers up all your receptacle outlets throughout the trailer. There is no way to work those outlets from the battery unless you have an inverter, which is most of the time available only in high end fifth wheels and motorhomes. If I remember correctly, Sunline NEVER used inverters, and if they did, it would have only been in the newest Fivers.

All in all, plugging in the trailer basically turns it into one big extension cord, with a battery charger plugged into one plug. When you cranked up your genny, you could have plugged in a clock radio or secondary lamp, it would work too.

Hope this helps,
Jon
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Old 05-13-2007, 07:52 PM   #5
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Deepseafloyd
Thanks Jon for the follow up.
I now have a better understanding and thanks for giving my post some thought. It just seemed odd that with the pop-up we had, had the same functionality with battery power and electrical power (Besides the AC) than the travel trailer had.
Thanks,
Andreas
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Old 05-14-2007, 12:01 PM   #6
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Dragging rear end

Andreas,
In regards to "flipping the axles", I had it done on my T2553 last month. I recently took a trip to the San Francisco Bay area with the trailer. It towed fine. And when I got home, when I backed into my driveway, no dragging. Flipping added 4.5 inches to the ground clearance. You might have to keep one of those foldable steps to assist getting into the trailer though. Hope this helps.
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Old 05-14-2007, 10:03 PM   #7
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Andreas

Tell us some more about what you have.

What year is your camper and what is the make of the converter?

Not all convertors are created equal. My 2004 came from Sunline with an
American Converter manual CS6000XL American unit in it. It will provide a full 60 amps of 12 volt DC with no battery attached. It even says that on page 3 of the PDF. But this is one of the newer converters.

Some of the older ones worked like what Sunline Fan said and did need a battery to stabilize out the DC load. The newer TTís from Sunline had a disconnect switch on the battery and you can even switch the battery off and still have all the 12 VDC inside running on shore power. I do it all the time.

Does yours have a battery disconnect switch and have you run it on shore power before with the battery un hooked? If yes, then there is something else not right, if No, then most likely your converter vintage/model may need to have the battery attached.

Now to the AC unit, it should of worked. Itís one of the few 120 VAC things in the camper unless you have something really special. The microwave and the AC unit are about the only 120VAC devices other than the electrical heater element and what ever you have plugged in a wall outlet. And the converter unit....

Hímm I wonder if you have one of those choppy AC generators. But I would think the microwave would not work right either.

What makes/ model generators is it?

Ok it just dawned on me, on your generator do you have a normal looking 120 volt receptacle that is like in your house? The house recptacles are normally 15 amp or if you have a 20 amp one then it has 1 blade horizontal on it too.

A 15 amp looks like this


A normal home 20 amp looks like this


OR is it a full 30 amp 120 VAC camper style receptacle like at the campground? The AC unit needs a full 20 amps circuit to start with enough voltage. If you plugged it into a 15 amp outlet the voltage drop may be big enough the voltage dropped down and will not start the AC unit.

A 30 amp camper plug looks like this


Need more info on your setup. Something doe not yet add up. Tell us how you plug the camper in? Did you use the full 30 amp shore cord into a full 30 amp plug? And tell us about your converter.

Hope this helps

John[/url]
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Old 05-15-2007, 08:29 AM   #8
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John,

I believe Andreas mentioned in another post a while back that his was a 2001.

Jon
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Old 05-20-2007, 06:16 PM   #9
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Deepseafloyd
Hello John,
Thank you for your response, and I really appreciate the time you put into it. My Sunline is a 2001 T-2653. The Generator Iím using is a PowerMax XP6500E. I had an adapter from a 30 amp camper connection to 20 amp and thatís how I plugged it in to the generator (I ordered a 30 amp connector that will fit the 30 amp twist lock on the generator). The converter is a Centurion 3000 S.A de C.V, CS 4500 and from what I can tell does it does not have a disconnect switch for the battery. When I posted, I neglected to mention the fact that I had the battery disconnected because I did not think I needed it. From the information I have gathered, the converter will recharge my battery, which needs to stay connected. However, there is no indication that it is doing so. Not sure how to test this, but Iím keeping it plugged in and seeing how long the battery holds out. I did run the generator again and the AC did work this time and not sure what the issue may be. I guess I will have a better understanding when we take our first trip Memorial weekend.
As for SanDimasJoe response, I will be getting the axles flipped (over/under kit). I measured my axles and they were 2 3/8 and I order the parts from Stoltzfur (Read about them on this message board, PN 5771384 Dexter axles $78, very helpful) and had them dropped shipped. I will be getting them installed after our first trip. Not sure I will get the same clearance as everyone else has mentioned but hope it resolves the problem. A concern I have is that when we purchased our Sunline they installed a hitch with weight distribution bars based on how the Sunline is now, do I need to get a new hitch when the axles are flipped? My thought is if I keep the same hitch then I believe my tongue weight increases but not sure how that will affect my towing (2002 Dodger Ram 1500 conversion van). Any input would be greatly appreciated.
Gross Vehicle Weight Rating 7k
Minus Unloaded Vehicle Weight 4873
Fresh water 283
LP gas 68
The hitch is rated for 7K with the weight distribution bars.

Thanks again everyone for all the input,
Andreas
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Old 05-20-2007, 10:30 PM   #10
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Andreas

Thanks for the more info. I'll do some digging and report back.

However on your axle flip and hitch issue. This one is easier to answer quick. Basically when you lift the TT up off the ground with the axle flip, you will need to either adjust your hitch head up along the hitch shank to again level out the TT while towing.

Pending what you have, you may not need to buy a new hitch shank. Most you can flip the shank UP making it what they call a "rise" shank verses a "drop" shank. Rise shanks go above the 2" square hole in the TV receiver, drop shanks go below it. Depending on what you have now will depend on if it will rise enough.

If you have a side pic of the hitch we can see and help tell you what to adjust. Or give us exact Part numbers and brand names so we can look up the parts. OR both

Worst case is you only need to buy a new hitch shank, not the whole hitch unless you have some kinds of real special hitch without an adjustable shank.

John
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Old 05-31-2007, 08:45 PM   #11
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Deepseafloyd
Hello John,
Just wanted to follow up on getting the axles flip question I had asked. I learned that the hitch I have can be adjusted as you have indicated. In addtion, I'm getting dual cam set-up instead of the friction sway bar. I did not know that the friction sway bars are only good up to 19'. On another note we had a great memorial trip with our Sunline.

Thanks for the help,
Andreas
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Old 06-10-2007, 09:19 PM   #12
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Deepseafloyd
Hello John,
Just wanted to follow up further about the electrical issue. While having the axles flipped the repair shop looked over our Sunline and found the battery charger portion of the convertor bad. So that explains alot. From what I have been told the battery charger portion can be replaced but the repair shop and myself could not find a spare. This will require replacing the whole convertor. The convertor he wants 281 dollars plus two hours of installation. Might do this one myself to cut the cost. One question is that I can not find a web site for Centurion convertors, are they out of buisness also?

Regards,
Andreas
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Old 06-11-2007, 07:04 AM   #13
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Andreas,

Try Best Converters.com for a replacement to the Centurian. Not sure if they're out of business or not.

Here's also a post on the Open Roads Forum of some one who purchased a replacement to the Centurian from Best Converters.com and installed it himself.

Hope this is of some help.
Hutch
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Old 06-11-2007, 07:47 AM   #14
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I don't know if Centurion is still in business, but it wouldn't surprise me if they were gone. It seems like everything associated with Sunline is also going out of business. I just came across a old manual from our first Kelsey-Hayes brake controller, another company that's now out of business.

Jon
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1997 T-2653 Blue Denim, #5471
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Past Sunlines: '97 T-2653 #5089, '94 T-2251, '86 T-1550, '94 T-2363, '98 T-270SR
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