Restored Trillium Converter! - Fiberglass RV
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Old 03-25-2017, 08:36 AM   #1
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Restored Trillium Converter!

My 40 year old Trillium 4500 power converter had failed.

1. The built in AC and DC circuit breakers could no longer handle rated current, so the AC circuit breaker would pop under a 7 amp load instead of the rated 15 amps. The DC circuit breaker would randomly pop after 20 minutes.
2. On the battery/shore power mode switch one of the terminals was broken off.
3. The transformer didn't properly power my new interior led bulbs.

What to do? I searched extensively but couldn't find a new replacement converter that fit in the same location. Finally in preparation for our winter snow-birding trip, I decided to just renovate the original PD-6921:

- Swapped out the AC and DC circuit breakers for new ones
- Swapped out the mode switch for new one
- Swapped out the transformer for a Mean Well SP-150-12 power supply

Worked flawlessly on our winter trip - both shore power and boondocking.

With the renovated PD-6921, I can still apply future upgrades if desired:

- Upgrade shore power to 30 amps and add AC circuits & circuit breaker panel inside the cabinet
- Increase 12vdc power and add circuits & fuse panel (just using terminal block now)

PS: Transformer would BOIL the battery. See next post for solution.
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Old 03-25-2017, 08:47 AM   #2
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Battery charging solution...

I forgot to mention that I DON'T use the converter to charge the battery. The battery is wired so that:

- when shore power is available I use an excellent small smart charger plugged into the PD-6921 panel mounted outlet
- when solar power is available I use a solar charge controller

Edit: I use a 38 amp hour AGM battery mounted inside the cabinet where the 25' shore power cable used to be. It has a fused pigtail for charging.
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Old 03-26-2017, 07:40 PM   #3
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Wiring Diagram

Here is the wiring diagram for rewired converter:
"sp" = spade connector
"r" = ring connector

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Old 03-31-2017, 07:04 AM   #4
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Good upgrade John. Glad it works well.

Harvey
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Old 03-31-2017, 07:18 AM   #5
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Thank you Harvey. Let me know if you have any questions.
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Old 10-18-2018, 07:39 AM   #6
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note re battery charging

The power supply does not charge the battery, instead a smart charger (CTEK MUS 4.3) is used.
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Old 10-18-2018, 08:05 AM   #7
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Assume you swapped to an exterior surface mount power cord attachment. Do you have q picture of what you installed? I've been thinking of dumping the mouse door and swapping the cord attachment myself. The 15 amp units tend to have a round bezel, not sure how it will cover the square mouse door.


Did the transformer fit within the original converter box?


Thanks!
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Old 10-18-2018, 11:23 AM   #8
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thrifty bill,

I installed the new power supply outside of the original converter box (didn't fit inside). I also installed two 12vdc terminal blocks (pos and neg), but could have installed a fuse box or breaker box instead.

Regarding the mouse hole, I had replaced the original one with what appeared to be an identical one. Later I found a Marinco 120 vac inlet that fits inside the mouse hole. I snugged it up with some closed cell foam but haven't permanently mounted it with epoxy or screws. I will post a pic in a day or two (don't have access now). Here is a link to the Marinco Park Power 150BBIW inlet that I used:

https://www.amazon.com/ParkPower-150.../dp/B002QALLOQ
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Old 10-18-2018, 11:54 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrifty bill View Post
Assume you swapped to an exterior surface mount power cord attachment. Do you have q picture of what you installed? I've been thinking of dumping the mouse door and swapping the cord attachment myself. The 15 amp units tend to have a round bezel, not sure how it will cover the square mouse door.

The Marinco Parkpower 150BBIW.RV 15 A. power inlet is too small to fit the hole left by the mouse door. I just made an aluminum adapter plate:
http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...tml#post297255
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Old 10-18-2018, 01:30 PM   #10
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Good idea. Should my converter ever fail I would replace it with a DC supply also and a marine grade DC fuse panel. A relay to switch out the battery when plugged into shore power seems like the best way to keep the battery and power supply outputs isolated. I like the idea of a separate battery charger too. The only time I would need it is when I'm home so a built in one is not necessary.

My trailer came with a 30 amp Marinco cord. I sold it and installed the same 15 amp inlet. Like David, I made an adapter plate. My solution is in the same thread David referenced.
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:45 PM   #11
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Dave T, I actually inserted the Marinco Parkpower 150BBIW.RV 15 amp power inlet into the CABLE HATCH fitting, i.e., I didn't remove the CABLE HATCH fitting. I will post a pic when I get back to the camper.
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Old 10-18-2018, 06:17 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John in Michigan View Post
Dave T, I actually inserted the Marinco Parkpower 150BBIW.RV 15 amp power inlet into the CABLE HATCH fitting, i.e., I didn't remove the CABLE HATCH fitting. I will post a pic when I get back to the camper.
This is what I was thinking. If you could epoxy/glue/whatever the Marinco fitting into the tube on the backside of the cable hatch, you could keep the original cable hatch, but eliminate the wad of cord inside the trailer and the mouse entry point too.

I need to take some measurements.
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Old 10-18-2018, 06:27 PM   #13
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thrifty bill, that's what I've done, and am using it. Just haven't gotten around to permanently securing w/epoxy. The body of the Marinco unit is at most 1/4" smaller diameter than the inside diameter of the CABLE HATCH. I snugged it up with closed cell foam/polyurethane foam. I removed the Marinco rubber cap and instead use the original CABLE HATCH flap door unmodified.
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Old 10-22-2018, 01:53 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by John in Michigan View Post
Dave T, I actually inserted the Marinco Parkpower 150BBIW.RV 15 amp power inlet into the CABLE HATCH fitting, i.e., I didn't remove the CABLE HATCH fitting. I will post a pic when I get back to the camper.
Dave T, here are pics I promised earlier showing the Marinco Parkpower 150BBIW.RV 15 amp power inlet inserted into the CABLE HATCH fitting. Still need permanently attach with epoxy, screws, etc.
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Old 10-22-2018, 02:08 PM   #15
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Looks good John.
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Old 11-01-2018, 10:40 AM   #16
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Parts links

Hello all
Hubs is back and ready to work on this problem!

John:
You very helpfully posted a parts list at the other string where this subject came up. I'm referring him to both strings but thought it would be helpful if that list appears in both so hope you don't mind if I just quote and put up that whole post from you here. Hope this works!

Begin quote:

Quote:
Originally Posted by John in Michigan View Post
Hi Francesca,

I replaced all of the components inside the my old power converter. Specifically:

- 12 vdc circuit breaker replaced (amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
- 110 vac circuit breaker replaced (amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1)
- SPDT switch replaced (can't find the link)
- Mean Well SP-150-12 power supply replaced old transformer (and I think there was also a diode which I removed) (amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I believe the reason I needed to replace the transformer was that the led bulbs were flickering, burning out, etc. but don't remember for sure. All I know it that now everything works and has been working ever since (two and a half years).

What problems are you seeing with the led lights?

-John
End quote

Source: http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...tml#post720895
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Old 11-01-2018, 10:52 AM   #17
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Sure Francesca, I don't mind.
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Old 11-01-2018, 11:08 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by John in Michigan View Post
Sure Francesca, I don't mind.
Thanks, John. Hubs doesn't have an account here; the trailer's always been my project. His main interest in it is that it continues to serve in its capacity as chuckwagon when he's on one of his motorcycle trips So I guess I'll be The Lovely Assistant from here on out, posting any questions etc. he may have.

Thanks again!
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Old 11-01-2018, 01:07 PM   #19
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Based on informative and relevant comments made by other members (Raz, John in Santa Cruz) in other threads, I would add:

- For LED retrofit bulbs that are burning out, overheating, flickering, etc., the cause may actually be that the LED bulbs are only rated to work in a narrow voltage range, e.g., 11 to 13 volts. This could be a problem because the converter could be producing up to 14 volts. Better bulbs are rated for a much wider voltage range, e.g., 10 to 30 volts. That's something to check.

- Troubleshoot the converter. It should be producing 12 to 14 volts DC. Also, you could check the ripple voltage. If it is significant, this could cause problems for the LED bulbs.
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