Trillium 4500 in Altadena - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-29-2018, 09:51 PM   #1
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Name: Mikael
Trailer: Trillium
California
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Trillium 4500 in Altadena

Hello all,

My dearest Cindy and I recently picked up a Trillium 4500. We are very new to trailers and have a lot to learn. Very happy to have found this place.

The previous owner mentioned it's a 1979, but the title says "1980". Whatever it is, it's cute as can be and nicely outfitted.

The main issues seem to be the same as everyone else has (as I have looked around the forums a bit): The door hinges, the lock, and the silicone all around the windows and the bellyband.

I have been cleaning her up and taking inventory and thought I would share some photos with you all.
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Old 09-29-2018, 10:00 PM   #2
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California
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Trillium 4500 in Altadena - Interior

and here's a few of the inside ...
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Old 09-30-2018, 09:01 AM   #3
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Mikael, congratulations and welcome to the forum. Nice mostly original, unaltered Trillium
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Old 09-30-2018, 09:03 AM   #4
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Mikael, where is your power converter? My still original but revamped converter is located below the heater.
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Old 09-30-2018, 12:03 PM   #5
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Trillium 4500 in Altadena - Electrical/solar system

Hi John ~ Thanks for the welcome. I'm still figuring out the power system, but the AC wire that comes into the trailer goes under the left rear bench into a 15 amp box.

Then there is the old "Central Power Pack" (left side of the kitchen counter, facing rear). I'm not positive what this actually does, but the DC power in the trailer doesn't work when it's set to OFF. It has to be switched on.

Under the front left bench is an Atwood APC-32 Converter / Charger. It provides a handy "cigarette lighter" plug so you can pop in a little USB charging port.

Everything is wired to the Napa Marine battery (part 8240) and ZAMP ZS-30AP Solar panel. I use the interior LED lights all the time, use the Fantastic Fan, and the battery just keeps on recharging here in sunny California.
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Old 09-30-2018, 01:17 PM   #6
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oh right my mistake: Trillium 1300 has the power converter in the kitchenette cabinet, while the Trillium 4500 has the power converter in the space below the closet, below the heater, adjacent to the wheel well (tight spot)

EDIT: wait a minute, you DO have a 4500, but power converter is NOT below the closet
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Old 09-30-2018, 03:52 PM   #7
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Name: Mikael
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Trillium 4500 in Altadena - Central Power Pack

Hi John ~ These photos better show the location of the original Central Power Pack.

When the white clickswitch is set to "OFF", there is no power to the whole trailer. The switch can be in "BATT" or "CONV" and the DC power works.

I plugged in the AC cable and found the 120v plug on the Central Power Pack doesn't work.

There is one 120v outlet in the middle of the Trillium's rear wall that is hot when the AC cable is plugged into house power.
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Old 09-30-2018, 07:16 PM   #8
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Congratulations! What a very nice 4500! Looks in wonderful condition! Welcome to the group!
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Old 09-30-2018, 09:43 PM   #9
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Mikael, yep mine is a 1978 model and somewhat different setup. My power converter (below heater which is below closet) has the batt/off/conv toggle switch as well as 12vdc breaker and 110vac breaker.

In your camper, apparently previous owner installed a new converter (Atwood APC-32 Converter / Charger) for providing 12vdc power and battery charging capability when shore power is available?

The 12vdc power supply (a simple transformer) in my converter failed, then I replaced with an electronic power supply.
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Old 10-01-2018, 10:12 AM   #10
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Nice front dinette conversion Trillium! Not a factory front dinette, as that would have the table hanging from a fibreglass back splash that would hang from the bottom of the front window frame.

The converter in the side of the kitchen is original. John, your converter being below the furnace allowed the drawers in your kitchen to be lined up. The new converter location required the drawers to be staggered, like Mikael's. I suspect that Trillium could no longer get the smaller converter that installed below the furnace, and had to switch to the one installed in the side of the kitchen. The second converter in the dinette seat does not make sense to me. Also the gas line running right beside it makes me nervous. It probably is used to charge the battery, and the one in the kitchen powers the lights. You probably could eliminate the one in the kitchen, since it can't charge a battery.

It looks like there was also a gravity furnace that was replaced with a catalytic heater. Were I you, I would look into going back to the original Duo-Therm furnace. They are no longer allowed as original equipment because the surface temperature can theoretically get high enough to start a fire, if something like a sleeping bag is laying against it. But that seems unlikely to me.

The catalytic heater has no exhaust vent, so they can cause a condensation problem, not to mention the fact that they use oxygen and if the trailer is sealed up tightly, (also not likely) then they will start to generate carbon monoxide as the O2 level falls. Just my prejudice.
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Old 10-10-2018, 02:06 AM   #11
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Name: Mikael
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Trillium 4500 in Altadena - Dinette, power converter, catalytic heater

Hey there, David ~ Thanks for your observations! Yes, the front dinette conversion seems like an afterthought. It is secured to the front wall with a wooden rail ... held on by a couple bolts going straight through the fiberglass! One bolt shows some cracks around the head in the exterior fiberglass. While there is no sign of a bunk bed, there is a red sticker near the gas stovetop that says "Caution: Do not use stove when bunk bed is in up position".

I agree with Dave that the second power converter seems mighty close to the propane lines! In fact, they are connected by some sort of wire (see photos). It may have something to do with grounding -- I don't know -- but I can't fathom why having them so close is a good idea. There is plenty of room in the compartment, so I wonder why the electrical installer (who surely came after the propane installer) would put them so on top of each other.

I also share David's concerns about the safety of the catalytic heater. So I went out every morning for a couple weeks to fire up the heater, have my coffee, and get used to operating it. I follow the lighting instructions, and still it routinely sends one or two "flashes" of fire across the pad while it's firing up -- unsettling at first, but you get used to it. (It may be dust-related, I have no dust cover). I took a look around at a gravity furnace option, as David mentioned, and all I find are old vintage ones that would require salvaging, restoring, and installing. That sounds like a challenge, so for now anyway, I suppose I'll hang on to the unit I have. We took our first trip to the ocean this past weekend and the catalytic heater came in handy in the mornings for a bit of warmth!

... and taking our first trip exposed what needs to be the top priority now -- those door hinges !!
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Old 10-10-2018, 10:29 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikael_the_Trill View Post
I took a look around at a gravity furnace option, as David mentioned, and all I find are old vintage ones that would require salvaging, restoring, and installing. That sounds like a challenge, so for now anyway, I suppose I'll hang on to the unit I have.

You are correct. No one makes gravity furnaces anymore. They exceed maximum surface temperature limits. If flammable material were up against the furnace, it could catch on fire. So if you want one, you will have to find an old one, (or two, for parts) then rebuild it. Not a small job.
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Old 10-16-2018, 09:51 AM   #13
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Name: Mike & Gail
Trailer: 2015 Casita 17' LD
Loveland, CO
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Mikael and Cindy, Welcome to fiberglass trailers from former Altadena residents (Harding Ave. near Eaton Cyn). Your Trillium looks great. Especially like your ROOF Mounted solar panel. It's always ready for the sun. No hassles of setting up a suitcase solar panel. It avoids lots of battery headaches. We have been in Casitas since 1999. Put in a carbon monoxide detector for good measure.
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Old 10-17-2018, 08:43 PM   #14
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Looks like the previous owners loved that little trailer. Enjoy it, they can be allot of fun. Think about the lake Casitas rally in a week and a half.
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