Modifications, Additions & Upgrades
 

03/20/2010

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  Although our home has wheels, it is really like every other home we've had....and probably yours too.  You live in it a little and you find things you want to change, add to or make more comfortable for your living.  We weren't in it long before starting and it is a continuing process. 

 

Below are modifications, additions and upgrades we've made...

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BlueOx Towing Equipment.  This lets us tow our Jeep, or other vehicle and do it safely.  See http://www.blueox.com  for pictures and more info.  There is the BlueOx Aventa tow bar rated for 10,000 pounds, the BlueOx baseplate for attachment to the car, BrakeSafe which provides proportional air braking in the Jeep while under tow, and BrakeLock II which hopefully will never be needed, but it's there if necessary. 

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In the water bay, we added an "On-the-Go" Water Softener, a RV-Sanicon Macerator, 2 water filters (replacing the original single filter), and a whole house pressure regulator added after the filters to maintain higher water pressure.

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A Motosat Datastorm dish so that we have Internet "anywhere" (unless we are under trees)

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Progressive Industries hardwired 50amp EMS

(no picture)  Saves our bacon (and the coach systems) when we encounter too high power or low power and "open" conditions when hooking to various electrical boxes across the continent.

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PressurePro Tire Monitoring System, monitors tire air pressure on motor home and on tow car.  We did have to add the antenna in our basement to insure always reading all tires.

(no picture)

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Full width slide out tray fabricated by DH Machine in Nappanee.  This just assists us in getting stuff in and out, especially from the middle of the basement.

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A box to hold 2 additional batteries welded under existing battery tray.  Double wall at back since near exhaust. There wasn't room to mount a slide-out tray and still have room for 2 batteries.  Decided slide-out not required since they will be AGM batteries.  Also done by DH Machine.

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Extruded metal tray under LP tank to provide storage space for some sewer accessories and other miscellaneous without the need of an enclosed bin.  Also by DH Machine.

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Silverleaf VMSpc equipment and 19" HD monitor to display VMS data.  Installed on tilt/swivel mount to provide driver with unobstructed view of the road.

JIB module sits under dash removable panel

Tilt/swivel mount is by Sanus

Dell 19" HD monitor

VMS display

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Power strip to provide convenient individual on/off control for electronic components above driver seat.

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New TV...although we had an HDTV, it was only 26" and the resolution was not as crisp as we wanted.  The new TV is a Sony Bravia model KDL-40Z4100.  The processor is a 120Hz (instead of 60Hz), 1080p, 40".  This new model has a very slim outside bezel with 1/2" tall speakers which allowed us to fit it in the same space with no real cabinetry work required.  Although it drops a little from the original cabinetry, it is not a head banger when going in & out the entry.  We will move the old TV to the basement to use as a patio TV.

This is the original TV a 26" Sony

The stiles removed and old radio speakers moved. New mount installed.

Holding up the TV so it can be attached to the mount.

What a great picture!

Looks great in the space.

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New kitchen faucet...never liked the original.  Didn't extend out far enough, splashed water behind the faucet on the counter at the rear of the sink.  After more than a year (out of warranty) the old faucet began leaking badly and quit turning from side to side.  What a great time to get a new one!  You will notice that Newmar in its infinite wisdom drilled three 1 1/4 holes for a single lever faucet.  We will install plugs temporarily, but hope to have the Corian repaired to fill them ultimately.  New unit....Grohe Ladylux Plus....should last the life of the coach.

The original

New single lever is back & forth for hot/cold and right/left for on/off

A good faucet, now need to fill those holes

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New radio speakers...The original speakers for the dash radio were tiny (3") and of poor quality...bad sound, and so on.  Since we had  Sirius radio on this unit, we really wanted better sound and didn't want to have to run the DVD player to get sound thru the surround system while driving.  So, the only solution seemed to be new speakers.  When we replaced the TV, the old speakers were covered anyway.  Actually the old speakers were repositioned so they faced the windshield and connected to the CB radio.  As bad as they were for music, they were great for the CB, so win-win.  New speakers are 60 watt Pioneer external auto speakers.  We found a nice spot for them on the end of the valance over passenger & driver side areas where they are unobtrusive, but good for sound.  They point toward the rear-center and each has 3 speakers to cover the full tonal range.

Attached to valance instead of wall

First one installed...woofer, tweeter & mid-range in each

Both up, not very noticeable, and great sound

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Solar Panels...plus the controllers and other gizmos that make it work with all the systems in the coach.  The product came from AM Solar and was installed by Marvin from PrecisionRV.com.  In addition we got a new Onan wireless auto gen start that is programmable to work with battery levels or heat/AC temps

Don & Marvin working on wiring

The only wall space we could find that was close to the batteries

Monitor

4 panels & wiring

New wireless/battery op remote control for auto gen start

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New Tank Monitor System...The old monitors just weren't cutting it.  We often had to guess when it was time to dump or fill.  We had heard good things about Garnet Industries See Level system and picked one up at a rally.  The people who created this actually spend most of their time with many thousand gallon oil storage tanks and do RV stuff on the side.  GREAT improvement over the old!  Most of the parts are hidden where they can't be seen, but this display is always on, showing the percent of the tank.  This is model 713FT.  It is very accurate and worth every penny.  With this you can be indoors while filling your fresh water tank and know it is full before it splashes on the ground.  Ditto when flushing the waste tank(s).

Here's a pic in mid install  , and here is the final "temporary" look    Obviously is mounted sideways.  Because the old hole was too big and there wasn't a good spot to cut a new hole, we decided on a complete revamp of the monitor cabinet.  We made a lifesize template with graph paper and re-designed where everything goes  .  More in line with things we don't touch upper right and things we do touch, lower left, and we left some open space for the future.  Sent this off to  someone that has done cabinet work for us before and they are creating a new backboard with the holes cut to our specs.    Will post a pic of the finished piece when we get it and install everything.

 

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   This site was last updated 03/20/10