Replacing failed 12v converter/Battery charger in Scamp 16 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-31-2021, 07:21 PM   #1
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Replacing failed 12v converter/Battery charger in Scamp 16

The existing charger 12v converter that is part of the Scamp DC fuse panel and AC breaker system has failed. This is in a 2005 Scamp 16 layout #6.

I have seen some past discussion about using a WFCO Model WF-8735P Ultra III Power Converter as a replacement.

On the Scamp Parts page they list a Progressive 45 Amp Converter Charger which is very large and will require mounting behind the existing panel.

What have others done as a replacement and what would you recommend, to replace the failed charger?

It would be nice long term to have a charger capable of Lithium battery charging profiles.

Steve.L
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Old 07-31-2021, 07:59 PM   #2
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I don't think so.
Looking for modern options.
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Old 08-01-2021, 06:53 AM   #3
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Battery charger

Our original 15amp converter has battery charge option but new battery has higher voltage charging requirements.
We have a new battery mender for charging it now. It is small and is stored in front boot.
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Old 08-01-2021, 09:01 AM   #4
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We replaced the failed converter in our 2005 Scamp 16 side dinette with the WFCO 8735. I like that it has the fan that uses air from the aisle instead of the hot air under the seat to cool the converter.

If I recall, we had to use a Dremel to widen the cutout opening about 1/4" each direction, but other than that it was an easy swap.

Unfortunately, I don't believe it supports optimum Lithium battery charging, although it will charge them, it won't charge them 100%.

Rather than a lithium battery, we used a Crown 12 volt 155 amp hour golf cart battery and that worked well for us, although it is a lot heavier than a lithium, but can still be charged in cold weather.

EDIT: Looking at the WFCO website, it says their 8700 series is safe to use with lithium. Not sure if it's optimum, but appears to be safe.
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Old 08-02-2021, 01:43 PM   #5
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The Progressive Converter/Chargers are excellent units. The do make several Lithium charger units. Some are switchable between lithium or wet cell batteries. https://www.progressivedyn.com/power-converters-2/
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Old 08-02-2021, 05:31 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve.L View Post
The existing charger 12v converter that is part of the Scamp DC fuse panel and AC breaker system has failed. This is in a 2005 Scamp 16 layout #6.

I have seen some past discussion about using a WFCO Model WF-8735P Ultra III Power Converter as a replacement.

On the Scamp Parts page they list a Progressive 45 Amp Converter Charger which is very large and will require mounting behind the existing panel.

What have others done as a replacement and what would you recommend, to replace the failed charger?

It would be nice long term to have a charger capable of Lithium battery charging profiles.

Steve.L
Hey Steve,
I didn't realize until now that it was you!
Tried to respond to your PM but it doesn't seem to be going through.
Hope you get it up and running again, that WFCO was only 5 years old!

Dave and Marilyn
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Old 08-03-2021, 08:16 AM   #7
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I re-used the existing front panel with breakers and fuses in my Trillium, and made adapter brackets to mount the new PD4135 charger unit to it, have been totally happy with it, and I ended up with enough breakers that way
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Old 08-03-2021, 09:58 AM   #8
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12v converter battery charger -- replacement underway

I ordered the replacement from: www bestconverters dot com

They recommended the PD4135. It is a four stage charger but is also lithium compatible.

They promptly answered my email inquiries even on Sunday.

Unit should be here later this week, I will update forum on progress after installation.
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Old 08-03-2021, 11:31 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve.L View Post
I ordered the replacement from: www bestconverters dot com



They recommended the PD4135. It is a four stage charger but is also lithium compatible.



They promptly answered my email inquiries even on Sunday.



Unit should be here later this week, I will update forum on progress after installation.


Iím following this closely
Iím considering a pd4135
But so far havenít pulled the trigger
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Old 08-03-2021, 04:16 PM   #10
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When my OEM converter failed I replaced it with a similar unit. When the second converter failed within a year of installation I wasn't about to spend a lot of money on another converter. My solution was to buy a good 10 amp battery charger at NAPA and wire it in place of the converter. I continued to use the converter shell as a load center containing the breakers and fuses.



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Old 08-03-2021, 08:05 PM   #11
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I've heard mixed or worse on the WFCO product, and good on the PD4135. So I put a PD4135 in my 1977 Trillium.

Best converter highly recommended the PD over the WFCO.
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Old 08-04-2021, 05:39 AM   #12
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I don’t remember the details of why I picked a PD unit, but I do remember that I got great service and advice from bestconverter.com
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Old 08-04-2021, 07:18 AM   #13
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I have had good service from my PD converter and I recommend them as a quality product.
I don't know if my older unit has the switch for the Lithium batteries or not as that would require me pulling the cover and I have been lazy lately.
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Old 08-06-2021, 03:58 PM   #14
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I have installed two PD units so far. One replaced the original Parallax converter in my '07 motorhome. The second was in my Bigfoot, which has a Parallax panel and someone had installed a WFCO 9845 which is a deck mount unit, but installed in a special open tray that fits the Parallax power center. The WFCO proved to be typical of them, not changing voltages as it should, sometimes you would power it down and then it would work OK. The next time you powered up it would go to bulk or top off and never drop to maintenance level. I removed it and installed a Progressive Dynamics PD4645, which works fine.

WFCO sells a lot of converters and power panels, but they are largely junk in my opinion.

Charles
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Old 08-07-2021, 07:35 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radar1 View Post
We replaced the failed converter in our 2005 Scamp 16 side dinette with the WFCO 8735. I like that it has the fan that uses air from the aisle instead of the hot air under the seat to cool the converter.

If I recall, we had to use a Dremel to widen the cutout opening about 1/4" each direction, but other than that it was an easy swap.

Unfortunately, I don't believe it supports optimum Lithium battery charging, although it will charge them, it won't charge them 100%.

Rather than a lithium battery, we used a Crown 12 volt 155 amp hour golf cart battery and that worked well for us, although it is a lot heavier than a lithium, but can still be charged in cold weather.

EDIT: Looking at the WFCO website, it says their 8700 series is safe to use with lithium. Not sure if it's optimum, but appears to be safe.
The main thing to watch out for with Lithium is a desulfation mode that can't be disabled. That'll damage the batteries or trigger the BMS. Otherwise it'll just be a lower-than-optimal bulk charge voltage which isn't a big deal.
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Old 08-11-2021, 11:43 AM   #16
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Go PD Intellipower

PD Intellipower Smart Charger is the way to go.
My 40A unit converts from PBA to LiFePO4 with a dip switch.
Just the best..AND Customer Service was excellent
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Old 08-11-2021, 12:34 PM   #17
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12v converter battery charger -- replacement completed

The new charger breaker/fuse panel arrived from from:

www bestconverters dot com

They recommended the PD4135, which uses Smart Charging Wizard and has selectable (via a switch) Lithium or Standard charging profiles.

The replacement is nearly the same size as the old WF-8735, so it easily is mounted in the same opening. The AC breakers from the old unit can be reused in the new unit, so I did not order new breakers.

Turn off all the power! Label the old wires, pull out the old unit, reconnect wiring, swap in breakers, mount new unit, fire up and test. If it passes the smoke test you must have done something right.

So far the new unit looks and works well. We have a trip planned in a few days and will be able to report how it operates after that.


Old Charger Panel
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New Charger Panel

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Old 08-11-2021, 12:37 PM   #18
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Loooooking Good !
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Old 08-11-2021, 01:48 PM   #19
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Are there any power centers like the PD 4135 that have an integral solar controller? I'd like to replace mine with a "does it all" panel.


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Old 08-11-2021, 03:58 PM   #20
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Stationary Solar Controller

Do yourself a favor..install a stationary solar controller for your panels.
I went with MidNite recommended by Arizona Wind and Solar, by far the most knowledgeable solar products vendor.
They customize everything for your specific needs.
No ONE SIZE FITS ALL SHOP.
The cheap controllers that come with any portable solar suitcase are JUNK.
You might get 80-90% of what you are actually producing in to the batteries.
Have not seen PD or any other RV Converters get in to the solar controller arena...totally different animal
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