1983 Scamp Power Problem - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-12-2015, 08:39 AM   #1
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1983 Scamp Power Problem

I just picked up a 1983 Scamp with a furnace. The furnace worked just fine, but halfway through the night it stopped working. The fan is on, but it doesn't seem like it's getting that much power. Also, when I turn the lights on, the fan gets even slower. I'm plugged straight into power, but I'm guess that maybe the furnace is only pulling from the battery? Is there a switch or something I need to hit?


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Old 09-12-2015, 09:07 AM   #2
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So took the battery off, and no furnace at all now. Maybe a wiring issue?


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Old 09-12-2015, 09:23 AM   #3
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Sounds like your converter isn't working. Some power chassis had a switch to manually change from battery to shore power, look for that first.


If original, in as much as it is now 30+ years old and has a very basic (read "Crude") electronics and battery charging ability, this might be the right time to consider a new Converter/Smart Charger.


I have installed a number of Progressive Dynamics PD-4045 Mini Power Centers in Scamps and others FGRV's with excellent success and recommend the same to others.
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Old 09-12-2015, 09:38 AM   #4
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Thanks!



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Old 09-12-2015, 11:24 AM   #5
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I agree, it sounds like the converter/charger is not supplying power to the battery. It may have failed and needs replacement, or it may be as simple as a blown fuse on that circuit. (although blown fuses are sometimes not so simple). Some of the converters have a plug that needs to be reinserted into the 110 volt power outlet since they get shaken loose from travel, so if you have that style, check the plug is still inserted.
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Old 09-12-2015, 03:32 PM   #6
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Its a 1983. check to be sure that your converter/battery charger is plugged in!
just trace the cord to find the outlet. Also they usually only have one breaker, be sure it is turned on and then check for 110V at the outlet.
Don't forget to switch the breaker on at the pole.
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Old 09-12-2015, 10:24 PM   #7
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He may not have a converter. My 1986 Scamp did not come with a converter from the factory. It had a 120 volt AC system and a seperate 12 volt DC system. I rewired and added the pd4045 electric control panel with dc converter and smart wizard charger. He may need to recharge his battery either by battery charger or hook up to his tug.
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Old 09-13-2015, 08:29 AM   #8
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With a fully charged battery, the furnace will work when there is enough air blowing over the safety sail switch. As the furnace runs, the battery power is drawn down, the fan slows down and the burner will go out since there is not enough airflow to exhaust the carbon monoxide gas.

If you have a stock “83, 13’ like mine, and as Steve indicated, there is no converter in it to recharge the battery while hooked to shore power, so it draws down the battery whenever the furnace, 12v frig, or lights are used.

What you can do is open the refrigerator burner access door and plug a battery charger into the 110v electrical outlet on the right side. Then run the cord and cables to the battery to recharge it when at a campsite with power. You will probably want to buy a multi-stage, “smart” charger so you can leave it connected to the battery all the time you are at the campsite without it over-charging the battery.

An alternative would be to install a converter system that takes power from the 110v supply and converts it to 12v and recharges the battery when at a campsite with power.

For those not at a campsite with power, they may want to investigate the use of a power line from the TV, a solar system or a generator to recharge the battery.
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Old 09-13-2015, 10:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scamper Jim View Post
With a fully charged battery, the furnace will work when there is enough air blowing over the safety sail switch. As the furnace runs, the battery power is drawn down, the fan slows down and the burner will go out since there is not enough airflow to exhaust the carbon monoxide gas.

If you have a stock “83, 13’ like mine, and as Steve indicated, there is no converter in it to recharge the battery while hooked to shore power, so it draws down the battery whenever the furnace, 12v frig, or lights are used.

What you can do is open the refrigerator burner access door and plug a battery charger into the 110v electrical outlet on the right side. Then run the cord and cables to the battery to recharge it when at a campsite with power. You will probably want to buy a multi-stage, “smart” charger so you can leave it connected to the battery all the time you are at the campsite without it over-charging the battery.

An alternative would be to install a converter system that takes power from the 110v supply and converts it to 12v and recharges the battery when at a campsite with power.

For those not at a campsite with power, they may want to investigate the use of a power line from the TV, a solar system or a generator to recharge the battery.
I have had exactly one early Scamp without a means to charge the battery supplied by the factory and it was bought without a battery. The TV supplied power for the onboard lights.
Most were factory supplied with a 12V charger and a single breaker 110V shore power supply.
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Old 09-17-2015, 09:31 AM   #10
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On my stock 1983 scamp, there is a very basic inverter. It does not charge the battery. It has a rocker switch on top to switch the camper from 12V inverter power to 12V battery power.
To run the furnace and interior lights on shorepower 12V:
-the cord has to be plugged in to a good outlet,
-the breaker under the sink has to be on (test for this by turning on the 120V florescent light),
-the rocker switch on top of the inverter (in cabinet below furnace) should be set to the 'converter' position, not 'battery'.

As a test, the 12V interior lights should work now. If they do, then try firing up the furnace.

FWIW, my inverter did not work initially. It turned out to be a broken glass tube fuse holder. It was repaired/upgraded by wiring in an inline blade fuse holder.

HTH
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Old 09-17-2015, 10:14 AM   #11
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Jim,

If you have a 1983 Scamp '13 with a power converter, you have a fairly rare one. The equipment list from 1993 (pic attached) still shows the power converters as optional equipment on both the '13 and the '16.

I called Scamp to clarify and he said they were offered in 1983 as an option but not many were sold. He said they were not standard equipment until the late 1990's.
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Old 09-17-2015, 02:23 PM   #12
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I couldn't sleep with the "rocket engine" furnace, so I took it out (salvaged it, if anybody is looking) and now use a small bathroom sized electric space heater. We plug-in most of the time anyway. It's SO MUCH quieter!
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Old 09-17-2015, 06:10 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stevebaz View Post
He may not have a converter. My 1986 Scamp did not come with a converter from the factory. It had a 120 volt AC system and a seperate 12 volt DC system. I rewired and added the pd4045 electric control panel with dc converter and smart wizard charger. He may need to recharge his battery either by battery charger or hook up to his tug.
Oh I wish I had seen this before I started a new thread! I just realized today that our 1982 doesn't have a converter (We are new to campers and thought they all came with converters- never occurred to us to check) and we've run our battery badly low. This is good to know and answers most of my questions! THANK YOU!!
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