Power Convertor for LED Lights - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 04-23-2015, 04:04 PM   #15
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Fixin' It

Quote:
Originally Posted by redbarron55 View Post
A new set of filter caps in the charger will fix it and if there is no battery installed that might also do the trick.
New is good too.


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It "Might" be filter caps, it "Might: be a blown diode or it Might" be the secondary on the CT Transformer has lost one side. In any event:
1. It's old already
2. It will not have multi-stage charging ability
3. It's rated output is, no doubt very low, usually around 15 amps
4. The OP doesn't sound like he is an electronics' tech and would have to pay some one one to troubleshoot and repair it, costing, no doubt almost as much as a new one. In a worse case scenario, the repairs could cost more than a new unit and yet another component could fail next week, month, year.

For these kinds of questions I tend to opt to update and replace rather than attempt repairs, as those that can make the repairs themselves usually don't ask the same questions.

And yes, I know that some don't agree with that approach but, as Mrs Hofstadter once told her son Leonard, "Buck Up". LOLOLOL
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Old 04-23-2015, 05:44 PM   #16
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First does the flickering occur only when plugged in? How about when using just the battery? If it happens with the battery then the LED's could be faulty.

There is a good chance your converter is fine but has no filtering circuitry and as such produces pulsating DC. LED's draw such a small current that I would expect the battery to provide enough filtering to take care of it. Is your battery in good condition? Incandescent lamps and motors aren't fussy and so these old converters will do the job. On the other hand electronic circuits like radios, audio, and computers like something closer to real DC. Could be the circuitry controlling your LED's is equally fussy.

The question that never seems to get asked is do you need a converter. A converter is simply a DC power supply with some added circuitry to charge a battery. If you regularly camp with electrical hook ups, a converter is worth the investment. If you normally camp in sites without power, or only spend a night or two where hook ups are available, then a solar set up may be a better choice. Remember your tow vehicle will charge your battery when you are on the road. At home an inexpensive stand alone charger will do the job. I would suggest evaluating the type of camping you do before you replace anything. Take care, Raz

p.s. Quite the sales pitch. Must be Bob hasn't made his quota for this month.
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Old 04-23-2015, 06:46 PM   #17
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Nope, I just like to promote the belief to be Happy Campers, and upgrading ones FGRV to what is standard practice in 2015 just isn't a bad idea. I seldom overnight or stay where there are power hookups, but my PD 4045 still provides a number of services for me that I wouldn't have without a modern power chassis/converter in my 42 year old FGRV.. Shall I elicit? OK, as long as it was requested:


1. A power chassis provides a control center for ac powr. Many older FGRV's have nothing more than a single circuit breaker for all 120 VAC circuits. This may be OK if all you have are lights and 1 outlet, but that means if anything goes wrong, everything is off.


2. A modern power chassis provides multiple fused DC circuits. Earlier Power chassis had a as little as a single dc circuit breaker or fuse. When anything went wrong, everything went off. In my dinky Hunter Compact-II I am currently using 9 fused circuits. If something goes bad, everything else still works. I even have my LED lighting on three separate circuits, left, right and outside.


3. A modern converter/power chassis will have a 3 stage battery charger, a well known improvement over older converters and cheap-o battery chargers that will over charge batteries and don't have the ability to desulfate batteries, a well known technique to prolong battery life.


I can plug in my Hunter in the driveway and forget it until I am ready to go. The batteries are always topped up and are never overcharged.


As I don't see any manufacturers ditching Power chassis/converters, I think I will stay in that same mode.


IMHO: FGRV's are intended to be enjoyed and doing a little extra to make that enjoyment even easier is money and time well spent.
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Old 04-24-2015, 08:22 AM   #18
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The Intelipower 9100 is only a Converter Charger. The PD-4045 has a complete AC distribution panel, a 12 circuit fused DC distribution section as well as a converter and a smart charger. Currently about $175 at vintagetrailersupply.com. Lower prices may be available. That way you can update and up=grade to 2015 electrical standards and future needs in one fell swoop...
While all that is true, the A/C side of my Scamp is fine. Maybe all one needs/wants is the Converter/Charger side of things.
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Old 04-24-2015, 09:28 AM   #19
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Hmmmmm... I thought that I was answering a question from Robert in Manitoba who has a 1977 Surfside.
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Old 04-24-2015, 03:33 PM   #20
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Hmmmmm... I thought that I was answering a question from Robert in Manitoba who has a 1977 Surfside.
I thought you were too. I was just pointing out that there was no mention (unless I missed it) that he had an issue with the A/C side of his system. Note this is an open discussion forum, people besides you can have an opinion and input (which may well be incorrect).

Bob, while I have not been around here as long as you, nor do I have your range of experience with FGRVs or travel trailers in general, I have read enough of your posts to know you quickly and consistently recommend the PD 4045 as a near universal panacea. There MAY be other possibly better, cheaper, and easier solutions to a problem. But when the only tool you have is a hammer every problem looks like nail.
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Old 04-24-2015, 04:03 PM   #21
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As I state earlier: "That way you can update and upgrade to 2015 electrical standards and future needs in one fell swoop".


No he didn't mention any problems YET, but if it is the original power box, it is almost 40 years old and it too, for only a few dollars more than just a new converter, can be updated as well, and that's not to mention what must certainly be a very anemic DC distribution system that may only have a single breaker or fuse for everything.


We do a lot more with our rigs today than we did back in the day and updating too modern electrical standards is a good idea.


I consistently recommend and have personally installed a number of PD-4045's and find the design, features, reliability and ease of installation to be far superior to anything else currently on the market, and at a lower price than others as well. If you, or anyone else known of a better choice of a power chassis to install in FGRV's, please let us all know.
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Old 04-24-2015, 04:50 PM   #22
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Tim, he's just looking to argue. Don't waste your time. Raz
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Old 04-24-2015, 04:58 PM   #23
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It's good to be aware of your biases.

There are other solutions, that fit other applications. I for one do not see the need for much AC. Therefor, a single breaker would likely suffice for me. I also do not see much need for three fuses for lights. I do however value the storage space, that a PD-4045 will occupy.

I think this is the ideal solution for a Trillium 4500:
Trillium 4500 replacement converter?
But Bob does not agree. There is another thread where we argue the various merits of our respective positions.
converter ?
The cost is higher then a PD-4045, there are no AC breakers, and the DC board has no enclosure. But, it fits where the old converter was, and I don't need more.

That being said, I am still getting along nicely with the factory converter, and the PD-4045 is a great solution for most, (not all) power centers in an RV.
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Old 04-24-2015, 06:02 PM   #24
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Here is the way I see it. If the owner wants to try to fix the converter a set of capacitors might well do the job for a few bucks. This assumes someone who knows a little about electricity or knows someone.
Or the thing can be replaced for a lot more. Then pick the one you want.
If the problem is just flickering LEDs then a good battery or a filter cap might well do the trick. Maybe $10.00 for the caps. Battery you might need either way. By the way on cheap poorly filtered chargers the battery is the filter.
Of course if half of the rectifier bridge is out then a few more dollars for that.
We have a range of choices here, not a bad thing in itself.
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Old 04-24-2015, 06:06 PM   #25
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I agree that each one of us should tailor our FGRV's to suit both our needs and our personal abilities. Some may want to embrace the more basic approach, while some may want more bells and whistles.


However, the P.O., in his first post was asking about the WFCO WF 8712P Power Center, an AC & DC distribution panel with a converter. I stated my opinion about WFCO and suggested a product that was similar in functions, but with much higher quality, capacity & capabilities, for only a slightly higher price.


Scamp dropped using WFCO for PD, that should say something.
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Old 04-25-2015, 11:15 AM   #26
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Thanks for all the input , I need to have a unit that has distribution for both ac and dc so the Intelipower 9100 is not suitable . Since I live in Canada availability of all units becomes a factor ie.shipping and exchange . One unit that is available is the Parallax 6730 which seems to exceed my needs . It would appear to be an American product and I have not heard anything in the way of problems . Anyone have any knwledge of this company's products ? Thanks Bob
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Old 04-25-2015, 11:32 AM   #27
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I don't have any experience with these units, but I did find a number of mentions about installing them in smaller Pop=Up trailers on the <<<popupportal.com>>> site that you might want to review as they seem designed for that market.


Here is a quote from their literature:
The model 6730D electronic converter/charger from Parallax Power Supply is the perfect power solution for small RV classes like tent, pop-up or truck campers. The filtered DC power is free from spikes and surges, ensuring bright lighting and smooth operation of amenities. The panel is pre-wired and preloaded with a 30 Amp main breaker, one 20 Amp circuit breaker and two 15 Amp circuit breakers. Battery polarity protection is provided and the unit has a 5 DC load circuit capability.


It seems to have the basics one needs, albeit scaled down from the design of the PD-4045. It also appears that it doesn't have a smart charger an important feature in my opinion.
You might look more on the popupportal site and ask there abouts for information. I am also on there and the site has a number of very active members.
All that said,, parallax has been around for a long time and I don't know/can't tell how old this design might be.
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Old 04-25-2015, 12:00 PM   #28
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I do not have a battery in the camper as we live in Manitoba it gets very cold for several months and idle batteries are a pain . When camping I almost always am able to get a spot with electicity which I appreciate because I love my microwave oven . I will use a small solar charger to charge my vehicle battery when necessary to use battery power . The only draw on 12 v dc is my lights which are now LED and should not require a whole lot of power , my furnace is the original which does not reqiure any power . My only 120 v need is to run my microwave and to recharge a phone or computer device . The Parallax should be more than capable of these needs , as long as it is a reliable product . Thanks Bob
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