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31  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Changes to Online Pricing on: January 27, 2018, 02:43:48 pm
I would never shop at a store that did not list the price of an item for everyone to see. I do not think the new owners or their wives would go into a store to buy a bedspread when they needed to ask the sales person what the price is for each one. I bet they would walk out of the store without purchasing anything
 pulling hair out  pulling hair out  pulling hair out
You are so right Tom.

This reminds me of my experience with jewelry.  I am not made of money so such luxury is limited, even by my wife Irene's standards.

Many years ago we had in our area a store chain called Service Merchandise.  They had an exceptional jewelry department with everything quite nice and reasonably priced considering the quality of the item, with regular, sale, and clearance items all priced clearly.  I was comfortable buying jewelry there.  It was so much better than buying at other affordable places like Sears & Walmart.  Though I paid a lot more, I did get a "Whole Lot More".

When Service Merchandise went out of business, I tried to find an equivalent.  I gave up after stepping into Jewelry store chains like Helzberg, Jared, and Zales, also shopping mall stores not posting prices.  They made me feel like a cheapskate when asking prices.  Then there was the matter of them peeling me up off the floor after they answered the question.  When I'd come to, I'd kindly thank them for their time and head back to my rusted-out Toyota Corolla.

Hence...    No Price...   No Interest.
That goes for everything from houses to motor homes, cars, electronics, all the way down to items in a garage sale.  That is just how I feel about it.  Given Phoenix's website today, if I were shopping for a new motor home, naturally Phoenix would not be on my list.  And so I cannot even recommend Phoenix to other people in the same manner I used to.  I am nearly clammed-up.
32  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Changes to Online Pricing on: January 27, 2018, 09:30:37 am
It is extremely helpful to know what MSRP is.  You need that number to negotiate.  Now you don't know anything up front before talking with the sales rep Earl.

I think Phoenix made a big mistake hiding MSRP.  All automotive websites as well as other motor home manufactures post MSRP numbers.  Considering the change, Phoenix should display...

"MSRP Starting At $00.000"
"MSRP Fully Featured $000,000" (with a picture showing full body paint and slide out)
"Call for the factory-direct savings price"

Many people will simply move on to other manufactures that post MSRP.  I know I would if shopping for a new motor home. No price = No interest.  Who would investigate without knowing what they are getting into?

I worry that Chuck and Jim are going to see sales drop to the floor now.  The economy is great right now but Phoenix will miss out on it.
33  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Batteries on: January 25, 2018, 10:16:17 am

You are breaking new ground in the PC world.  I do not know anyone who has exceeded two house batteries.  It will be interesting to see what you come up with.

Given our camping style, we too needed to make some changes to improve our on-board power capacity and the regeneration of it.  These relatively simple (easy to implement) changes improved energy immensely with our typical two battery provision.  I am sure more can be done.

1) Turn on the inverter ONLY when 110v is needed.  Otherwise leave it off.
2) Turn on the generator for high-energy use, short time items, like making a pot of coffee.
3) When on battery power, watch TV in the bedroom on the low-power TV powered by the inverter.  When on shore power, enjoy the main TV.
4) Changing from two 12V liquid acid batteries, to two-6V AGM batteries.
5) Changing all lighting from florescent and incandescent lighting, to LED lighting
7) Adding a volt meter in plain sight to keep battery condition "in my face".
8) Don't let the voltage get below 12.1V.  Run the generator as needed to charge the batteries.  I prefer to use a more efficient external charger to reduce generator run times, but I'll let the on-board charger do the job if it's raining badly.

One other easy power saver comes to mind, but not yet implemented.  Not so long ago, when edge lit LED TV technology arrived, I learned that some smaller LED TVs sold in stores already run on 12V-14V.  They use an external transformer in the power cord to convert from 110V to 12V-14V.  All you need to do for the installation into your PC is, cut off the transformer and wire the remaining cord direct into 12V.  Not only does the TV use less energy, but you don't need to turn on the inverter.  Keep in-mind that a DVD/Blu-Ray player and surround system still requires 110V.  So the results will vary pending the use of the sound system and entertainment source.  Roof antenna or cable TV input with a 12V TV will yield best results.  The key is to keep the inverter "off" to save more energy.

I especially like to use the inverter when we are spending much of the day traveling.  We can get sloppy with power usage because the Ford-V10 engine regenerates everything so well.  But once at a destination without shore power, and spending our days out in the tow vehicle sightseeing and hiking, we immediately change over to the conservative method.

I hope never needing four house batteries.  The topic on solar panels is fascinating as well, but I don't think they are for us.  But one thing in life I learned.....never say never.  In the mean time, I thank you and the others for the interesting reading material.

Ron Dittmer
34  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Batteries on: January 23, 2018, 10:36:50 am
I clicked and scanned through that "Handy Bob Solar" article.  That is a mountain of material to read through.

What really surprised me were the pictures further down in his article.

The tiniest of a shadow from a roof vent lid on a solar panel reduced it's output by 30%.

A narrow band of a shadow from the a/c unit reduced it's output by 90%.

It seems to me, unless you are monitoring shadows on your solar panels all the time, they are not doing much for you.  Maybe it's better to mount them to a stand on the ground so you can move them around to avoid every shadow as the sun passes overhead.
35  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: LED Lights too bright? on: January 23, 2018, 08:53:27 am
My LED light conversion done on the earlier florescent fixtures, I added a POT (potentiometer) in the fixture over the dining table.  The component was bigger than anticipated and so it has a slight angle to it as seen in the attached picture.  I am glad that fixture has it, and glad the others don't.  Adjusting the brightness on it is not linear like dimmers at home.  It is very sensitive in the adjustment where I wished it wasn't, and not sensitive where I wish it was.  It's not perfect but it does the job.

I added night lights in all 9 fixtures, and we love that feature.  When getting up in the middle of the night, we turn on the night light in the bathroom as not to blind ourselves.  During the evening, we turn the night lights on all unused lights to provide a warm & cozy atmosphere along with the convenience of seeing everything all the time.  All night lights combined is roughly 3 watts which is 50% that of one fixture in the normal setting.

I am not familiar with current-day LED interior fixtures, but if they have a normal setting and a low night light setting, I feel that would be a great alternative to a dimmer.
36  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Solar Question on: January 22, 2018, 01:45:52 pm
If you go around your PC and turn everything off "Including" your inverter, do you still get the same behavior?  Inverters left on but do nothing still consume energy.  Our old Tripp-Lite inverter left on doing nothing, has 12 amps of appetite.  That is why I leave it off all the time, except when inverted power is needed.
37  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Cabinet squeak on: January 20, 2018, 08:39:39 am
Hi Paul,

I think you can determine if that resolution will work for you, if you do what I had done.  That is to drive the rig with a passenger and with the cabinet doors open on each side of the TV.  Get it squeaking, and then each person take a turn applying downward force by hanging on the edge of the cabinet opening with one hand.  Of coarse the driver needs to take appropriate precaution doing so while driving.  It takes only seconds to know if downward pressure silences the squeaking.  The added screws applies permanent downward pressure.

You mentioned the possibility of hidden wires.  To be honest, I don't recall considering that.  Kermit "might" have mentioned not to worry about wiring, but I can't recall for sure.  Wiring in close proximity in our PC is our back-up camera, but they are on the inside of the cab hidden by the headliner and run along the top edge of the windshield.  Drilling into the steel roof is aft of that.

38  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Batteries on: January 19, 2018, 05:31:06 pm
Hey, I've got a question.  I've seen several people say that you need to disconnect the house batteries before using an external battery charger.  Anybody know why?  I don't disconnect the chassis battery to use a trickle charger (or my motorcycle or lawn tractor either, for that matter).  Why can't I just put a trickle charger on the house batteries?  In fact, I was even thinking of installing a jack so I can just plug it in when it's in storage.
I don't think it matters whether the house batteries are connected or not.  No harm either way.  Just make sure the main kill switch inside your PC is off.  It is typically located inside aft of the entry door.
39  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: What do you consider a MUST for a Phoenix Cruiser on: January 19, 2018, 05:21:12 pm
What pressure did you pre-charge at?
You ask a very good question.  It's been a long time since I installed our accumulator tank but I recall debating between 15 and 20 psi, settling in at 17.5 psi.  I have since been reading other people setting it over 20 psi.  I don't know what the right psi should be.  I really should determine the right psi, lift the bed platform, and set it proper for a 40 psi pump....assuming the pump stops at 40 psi.

I am really in the dark on this one.
40  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Cabinet squeak on: January 19, 2018, 05:06:37 pm
I just wrote the Tips and Tricks Solution to the sqeaky over-head cabinet.,3024.0.html
41  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Resolving An Irritating Squeak In Cabinet Above The Cab on: January 19, 2018, 05:01:10 pm
Five years ago during a multi-week cross country trip to the north-west and back, the cabinet above the driver developed a irritable squeak when driving.  While driving with that cabinet door open, I was able to grab the base of the cabinet above with my right hand and put some of my body weight on it which stopped the squeaking.

Once back home I called Kermit the owner of Phoenix USA at the time, to pick his brain on what might be going on.  After his first recommended attempt at a diagnosis yielded nothing, he suggested I bring in our PC and have them take care of it for me.  To avoid a special trip, I asked him if I could do it myself and so he told me what to do which completely eliminated the squeak.  It has been five years since I fixed it and the squeak has not returned.  If it does return, I should be able to remedy it by simply tighten the screws Kermit had me add.

The process is simply adding four screws through the upper cabinet floor into the steel Ford van roof.  To be proactive, I did the same in the cabinet above the passenger.

Here are the required tools and screws I decided to use for the project.  Six screws are pictured but I decided to add four per side for a total of eight screws.

Here is the van roof I screwed into.

Here is where the four screws on each side go, distance between screws is not critical.  I placed the fourth screw near the cabinet corner as extra assurance where I thought it might be needed most.  You want to measure three inches in from the cabinet face to assure you hit the van roof steel.  I first drilled tiny pilot holes to make sure I hit steel below.  There is an air gap between cabinet floor and steel roof of at least one half inch.  The cabinet floor material is very thin wood.  Adding four screws distributes the clamping stress across the entire length of the cabinet so the cabinet floor does not get distorted.  I taped threads into the steel roof and used flat head machine screws.  The cabinet floor is soft enough wood for the flat head to sink itself into the wood without pre-countersinking the hole.

42  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: What do you consider a MUST for a Phoenix Cruiser on: January 19, 2018, 02:57:50 pm
I agree with gandalf42.  An accumulator tank was a great addition to our PC.  I installed our tank 9 years ago.  If there is room, request a 2 gallon tank.  That is our size which runs the pump at logical intervals.  The pump runs very quiet because the 2 gallon tank dampens the vibrations from the pump to the pipes.
43  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Cabinet squeak on: January 19, 2018, 11:11:23 am
Hi Guys,

I will write something in Tips & Tricks and include pictures.  When finished, I will post the link to it here on this thread.  I am short on time this morning or I would have dome it right away.  Stay tuned.

To prepare you, the solution was fairly simple and effective.

44  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: Ron Dittmer's Compilation Of Personal Tips & Tricks on: January 19, 2018, 10:51:55 am
Thank you Jim for your reply.  It is good to read that people find my Tips & Tricks useful.

I have never attended a gathering of PC owners......I am so "itching" to attend one.

The trouble with Irene and me is that it is so hard to get out with our PC.  We average one 3 to 4 week RV trip a year that is squeezed into our busy lives.  I thought retirement would open up opportunities of which it has with our other vacationing methods like cruise ships and world travel.  I did end up maintaining my profession on a part-time contract basis which further complicates trip-scheduling.  At least my work has been funding our travels so far.

Maybe one of our RV trips will one day fall within a PC gathering, both schedule and location.  It would be awesome to meet fellow PC owners.

45  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Ron Dittmer's Compilation Of Personal Tips & Tricks on: January 19, 2018, 08:55:49 am
Greetings To The Phoenix Cruiser Family and To Those Considering A Phoenix Cruiser

Here is my compilation of Tips and Tricks I have written since Phoenix started the forum in early 2009.  I put this together to make it easier for myself and others to find them.  Maybe you will find some interesting and applicable to your PC or other motorhome.

Keep in-mind that my Tips and Tricks apply directly to a 2007 PC built on a 2007 Ford E350, model 2350 with no slide out.  Some will not be applicable to different models and more recent models.  Also understand that I am a miser by nature, always trying an affordable alternative to repair or improve things.  They are not necessarily the easiest method and in some cases, not the best method.  They are simply a low cost method that worked for me.

If you plan to purchase a brand new PC and you wished a new one had something I modified on my rig, ask the factory.  They can accommodate various special requests.

Ron Dittmer

Ron's Tips For Class C /B+ Shoppers,1911.0.html

How To Add A Link To A Website, In Your Post Or Reply,2697.0.html

Improvements & Enhancements, 2007 PC-2350,8.0.html

Resolving An Irritating Squeak In Cabinet Above The Cab,3024.0.html

Doubling Drawer Storage Of Galley Base Cabinet,1751.0.html

So Your Ford Died And Won't Start. First Try This.,1141.0.html

If Struggling With Your 2350 Rear Corner Bed, Consider This,1695.0.html

How To Avoid Tow Vehicle Bucking,1697.0.html

Rear Compartment Lined With Outdoor Fabric,2467.0.html

A Low Cost Heavy Duty Rear Sway Bar For The Do-It-Yourself-er,155.0.html

Evaluation Of Tire Gauges For Accurate Readings - Reduce Risk Of A Tire Blow-Out,2798.0.html

Solved Chronic Microwave Oven Loosening Then Rattling,2486.0.html

Windshield & Van Door Window Sun Shades - Cheap, Effective, Easy To Use & Store,2513.0.html

Ever Wonder What A No-Slide-Out Dinette Looks Like?,2842.0.html

How To Determine If Your Ford Is "Keyless Entry" Ready,1145.0.html

More 12V Outlets For Us With The Older Ford Chassis Design,2233.0.html

Adding Features To Our Older Style 2007 Control Panel,2234.0.html

Inspect Your Roof, It Might Need A Touch Of Caulk Here And There Like Ours,2239.0.html

What Is That Banging I've Been Tollerating For The Past 3 Years?,232.0.html

Need The Strength Of "THE HULK" To Work Your Shower Head? If So, Read This.,2241.0.html

Does Your A/C Unit Run Exceptionally Noisy? If So, Read This,2570.0.html

On-Vehicle Tire Repair,1038.0.html

An Affordable Roof Vent Cover For People On A Budget,2939.0.html

Is Your Hot Water Not Working On 110V? If So, Read This,92.0.html

Hand-Held Bug Zapper, Fun & Effective,1850.0.html

Tuning-Up Your Heavy Duty Stabilizer Bars,2991.0.html

Converting Interior Lighting To Low Power Warm LED Lighting, Very Affordable,2186.0.html

Reinforcing Your Norcold Fridge Door Hinges,2187.0.html

Those Two Screws In The Middle Of The Entry Door Threshold,77.0.html

How To Test Your Suspension. Does It Need Heavy Duty This & That?,2094.0.html

When Was The Last Time You Checked Your Roof A/C Cover?,2932.0.html

Converting From Two 12V Batteries To Two 6V Batteries,2092.0.html

Ford Engine Power-Robbing Assembly Mistake, Easy For Anyone To Check For,2931.0.html

Putting Up Awning While In A Real Bad Storm,615.0.html

Low Cost Macerator Pump Replacement (Saved A Pile Of Money),2086.0.html

Tip On Battery Care,1433.0.html

Conserving Battery Reserves Without Shore Power,73.0.html

Repairing Older Kitchen Faucet, Leaks Under Handle When Water Is On,2906.0.html
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