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61  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: New Owner on: November 12, 2016, 03:55:50 pm
I believe the strips are rated at 1500 watts so the maximum heat is about 5,200 btu.  The PC heat pump is rated at 15,000 btu so about 3 times as much.
So there I have it.  The heat pump generates 3 times the heat, but starts dropping off when outside temps get below 40 degrees.  Thank you for the education.

Regarding the noise level of the roof top a/c system, a few years ago I recall someone here ordering a Coleman unit for it supposedly runs at a significantly reduced noise level.  People ordering a new PC might want to look into it.
62  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Brakes and toads and the E-350 chassis on: November 12, 2016, 11:03:25 am
Hi Jjohnson & BlueBlaze,

I have every PC brochure published since 2007.  Putting the Sprinter chassis aside, going back as far as the 2007 model year (likely even farther back) models 2551 & longer have always been built on the E450 chassis.  Models 2400 and shorter have always been built on the E350 chassis.  You can special order a shorter model on the E450 for a slight up-charge, and so there are only a few in existence.  I recall once seeing a couple of 2551s for sale on the internet some years ago that were older than 2007 which were built on the E350 chassis.  I don't know when the 2551 changeover from an E350 to E450 was made.

Putting aside the differences between the E350 & E450, when it comes to chassis specs between model years, the 2007 was the last year of the previous generation with lower GVWR & GCWR ratings.  I believe the 2008 to current-day are the same, more capable specs.  Go through each model year and compare brake piston and rotor diameters, stabilizer bar diameters, shocks sizes, etc.

There are a few interesting differences between the big change from 2007 to 2008.  Nearly everything is a tiny bit bigger in diameter.  Also interesting is the E450 gave up the high durability drive shaft parking brake.  The parking brake mechanism has since been integrated into the rear brakes like the E350 which is like regular cars.

The next change between 2007 and 2008 is difficult to get an answer since I don't have a 2008 VIN number to input into Ford's on-line parts catalog, but.....The 2007 and older, the front rotors are one with the hub like a serious truck has as seen here.  I understand the 2008 to current-day are like typical cars where the rotor slips over the hub and studs.  But just maybe I am all mixed up.  I am getting older.  It is hard to keep up with all this stuff.

2007 E350 front rotor is one with the hub.

For reference, here is a 2007 E350 rear rotor looking to be just like typical cars, but instead it bolts to the inside of the rear hub from behind.

63  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: New Owner on: November 12, 2016, 02:21:09 am
Thank you both for the clarification on heat pumps in-general.

For the application in a roof-top a/c unit on the roof of a motor home, I feel energy usage is generally not a consideration as Michelle noted.  Would we all agree?  If so, then I would think "Noise" and "Quanity Of Heat In Colder Temps" would be the focus, not energy efficiency.

Does the heat pump in a PC generate more heat or less heat in colder temps than the heat strip offered?
Does the heat pump in a PC make more noise or less noise than the heat strip offered?

I don't have the answers but my ignorance says the heat strip is the clear winner.  Adding $400 for a heat pump makes no sense.  I feel I am missing something here.

64  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Brakes and toads and the E-350 chassis on: November 12, 2016, 01:38:23 am
Hi BlueBlaze,

You ask some of the same questions I had before having towing experience.  I can't answer them specifically, but can share my experiences.

Our PC is on a 2007 E350 chassis.  Our first tow vehicle was a tiny 2000 Toyota MR2 Spyder which had a curb weight of 2100 pounds.  Being so close to the 2000 pound legal limit (for most states back in 2007) for not requiring secondary braking, I setup our tow without it.  I was very surprised how such a light weight vehicle could push so very hard when braking the E350 motor home.  The difference between towing the MR2 and not towing was night and day.  So when we switched from the 2100 pound MR2, to the 4300 pound Jeep Liberty, I had no second thoughts about secondary braking.......It is an "Absolute Must".

As far as which braking system to install, there are many different ones and many people like the ones they installed.  And so here I am saying that I like our Unified tow brake by US Gear for it's ease of use and effective braking.  Installation is not easy and is considered a permanent installation to the novice.  But since I installed it myself, if we change tow vehicles, I will remove the system and install it into the next one.

BTW: Since you say you own a 2008 with a GVWR of 11,500 pounds, are you certain you own a 2008 chassis?  I ask because the 2008's GVWR is 12,500 pounds.  Your 2008 PC might be built on a 2007 chassis as is common practice.

It is very easy to tell if you have a 2007 or a 2008 E350 chassis.  If you have the current-day van front style, you have a 2008 chassis.  If you have the earlier style like mine has, then your E350 is a 2007.

Here is my 2007 front style.
The painted front bumper cover with fog lights was an extra Phoenix option so don't get confused about that.

Here is a 2008 which looks the same as a brand new 2017.

65  Main Forum / Tips and Tricks / Re: Shelf and 12V Outlet on: November 10, 2016, 08:01:22 am
Ah......Now the fun begins.  nod

fandj, I LOVE your ideas and implementations....Nice work!  Thank you for sharing them.  You have the wheels spinning inside my head for such a shelf in our bedroom on the wall with the thermostat.

BTW, Did you find the 12V outlet in the cabinet above the passenger?  Unless Phoenix recently deleted it, you should have one there.

FWIW, I addressed our gadget charging needs by adding a shelf in that same cabinet along with a power strip with the outlets positioned at different orientations for all styles of 110V chargers.  I store my 17" laptop on a foam pad in the upper shelf.  When driving with the inverter on, on shore power, or generator running, everything gets charged up.  It is nice to close the door and the house being free of such wire.

Yet I do like the in-bed convenience your 12V outlets offer.  ThumbsUp

Here is what I had done.  My original plan was to follow up with a 3-gang 12V power strip, but the need never surfaced.
66  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Magneshades and AGM batteries on: November 09, 2016, 12:57:03 pm
Hi pguill Patty,

Regarding batteries, here is my experience with our 2007 PC during the past 9.5 years.  Keep in-mind that we typically rely heavily on battery power with our camping style because we almost never have shore power in the places we camp at.  Given this was our first real motor home with all the ammenities, I did not know what to expect from the house batteries.

Phoenix included two 12V lead acid batteries and a whole-house inverter in every PC starting mid-year in 2006.  This picture of our 2007 2350 was taken when it was a year or two old, immediately after I installed a battery compartment tire-splash shield.

The batteries pictured above were the originals which started to fade badly during year #3 because one battery fell ill.  I replaced both after year #4.  Needless to say the last big seasonal trip with them had serious power issues.  Back then, I wondered if the ill battery was faulty from the start, causing over-charging followed by the acid boil-overs.

Because I thought we had a bad battery from the start, I replaced them both with the same 12V wet acid technology from Walmart at $96 per battery.  I selected ones with identical production dates, tested and charged them independently before installing them to assure they were truly good from the start.

A surprise to me, the exact same issues occurred at about the same time which was very frustrating, one of the two batteries quickly falling ill.  It didn't matter that I was very good on battery maintenance along with storing them under ideal conditions.

So for battery set #3 it was time to try something different which was at the time when Phoenix started installing 6V batteries.  Being a retro-fit condition for our PC, in order to get the extra height to accommodate the taller 6V batteries, I had to sacrifice the battery tray.  Given the tray was gone, it became critical to have maintenance-free sealed batteries, so I thought why not try AGMs?  So I shopped around and found Sam's Club selling 6V Duracell AGMs for around $180 per battery.  The picture below shows them installed in our 2007 PC.  Note the battery tray is now gone and a steel floor and sides added into the framing to support & cradle the batteries.  I also had to change the setting on my inverter for AGM batteries which was detailed in the inverter owner's manual.

The 6V AGM batteries are currently 2.5 years old.  The first year with them, we took a 4 week trip with no hook-ups ever which went perfectly.  This past fall, we went on a 3 week trip but we did use shore power often, so it really didn't test them much.  Still, all went well.  With the new volt meter I installed, I watch power drains closely.  All I can say is "So Far VERY Good".  Preliminary conclusions are......I endorse them.

I am no expert on this stuff so don't consider me so.  But it seems two 6V batteries hooked up in series (like batteries stacked in a flashlight), they share the load equally, and drain at the same rate.  With two 12V batteries hooked up the other way in parallel, one drains so much faster than the other causing all sorts of problems.

I hope spending nearly twice as much for the AGM 6V batteries will perform better throughout their life, and maybe even live longer.  But I won't have the results until it's time to replace them which I hope won't be for another 6 years.  Smile

67  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: New Owner on: November 09, 2016, 12:41:40 am
What is the difference between a heat pump and a heat strip?
68  Main Forum / Photos / Re: 2910 single slide on: November 08, 2016, 10:08:08 am
Home Sweet Home

69  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: New Owner on: November 07, 2016, 11:32:53 pm
jatrax, I absolutely love your list.

If I may.....

You said you are getting AGM batteries.  I agree.  Are they 6V or 12V batteries?  I got two 6V AGM batteries and are extremely happy with them so far.  That is compared to two 12V lead acid batteries.  I feel two 6Vs share the load much better, and discharge in unison better than two 12Vs.  But understand that I've had them for only under 3 years so far.

About your 3 captain seats.  Make sure they all have the manual dial lumbar support.  Years after buying our PC, we ordered our third captain seat which by chance happened to come with that dial-in lumbar support.  We wished the two main seats up front had that.

70  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: New Owner on: November 06, 2016, 10:47:46 pm

You are such a teaser.  Please share all the details on the deviations you worked out with the people at Phoenix.

 Smile  Ron
71  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Standard split reclining sofa/chairs on: November 06, 2016, 07:14:22 am
Hi snowman9000,

I have seen a few PC's with two swivel & slide captain seats in the slide out in-place of the couch.  They are bolted down and have seat belts.  If ordering a new PC, that would be a question to ask Earl at the factory.  The bigger slide out of the 2351 and 2552 might even include a table in betwen them if deleting the pantry there.

If considering a used PC, you may be able to swap out the couch for two captain seats yourself.  You could order matching ones to the others up front, from PC's supplier.

Just sharing a viable option if you don't mind sacrificing the convert-a-bed.

I wonder if conventional captain seats are available with reclining footrests like the couch offers.  That would seem better yet.

72  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Introduce Yourself! on: November 04, 2016, 12:48:37 pm
Welcome Swiftboot.

How nice you found a newer used PC.  We did too.   Ask away, as you already know, many members are eager to share their knowledge and help solve problems.

Ditto From Me Too!
73  Main Forum / General Discussion / Re: Looking for the right vehicle to pull behind the PC on: November 03, 2016, 06:23:59 pm
We have an '03 Wrangler Rubicon and if we do buy a motorhome and tow it, I might mount some sort of shield or guard in front of the Jeep's tires
The people were towing a 4 door Wrangler which is the later version, right?  Your previous generation might not have the same problem.

As I mentioned before, I believe the aggressive thread on their tires was so much that it was tossing much larger stones forward than normal Wrangler tires would.  Regardless, maybe you could fabricate something.  What comes to-mind are small shields made of thin light-weight durable plastic that clamp on the fenders with strong spring loaded clamps.  Simply remove them when you disconnect the Jeep from the PC.
74  Main Forum / Photos / Re: 2100 Pictures on: November 03, 2016, 12:36:57 pm
My 5 year old full paint PC still looks like new. It has never been indoors since leaving the factory and during oil changes at Jiffy Lube.

If the diamond shield has changed color to a light brown I can't tell because my full paint in those areas is light brown.

We had double pane windows in our Winnebago before getting the PC. Several of the windows were fogging up when we traded it in. So we did not get double pane in either of our two PCs. We find the white MCD shade will keep some, a lot of the cold out when pulled all the way down. I don't know if I would get double pane windows in our next motorhome, if there is a next motorhome. We don't do any winter camping after Thanksgiving.
Hi Tom,

It is good to hear that your paint job is holding up real well with your PC being outside all the time.

It is funny that you mention the color of the bug juice.  You are spot-on in that the specs of bug juice stains would easily blend into the tan & brown painted PCs.  That is an excellent reason to favor those colors.

About the fogging up of the thermal pane windows, it was on my mind for a long time, but it's been over 9 years now and so-far so-good.  Maybe the way we store our PC along with the softer suspension of our 2007 E350, helps to prevent it.

75  Main Forum / Photos / Re: 2100 Pictures on: November 03, 2016, 10:43:50 am
I have a question for you who own older PCs with full body paint and store your PC outside without a covering of any kind.

How is the paint work holding up to the elements?

I ask because I saw a full body paint 2007 PC (same year and paint as our PC) for sale on the internet earlier this year.  The painted surfaces that faced up toward the sky was badly sun beaten, faded, and even missing.  Maybe it spent it's 9 years in Death Valley unprotected.

That is something to think about.

One more thing I have noticed with some older PCs, how the Diamond Shield clean film paint chip protection on leading edges by  changed color badly to a burnt brown color.

Our first motor home HERE had a seamless gel coat unpainted fiberglass body similar in construction to a Coach House.  We bought it brand new and owned it for 24 years.  The gel coat finish was loaded with imperfections from the beginning, surely not the quality finish of a typical automobile.  We garaged it for all but the first 5 years.  The last half of ownership, it was very difficult to maintain the finish.  That is why it was important for me to have the full body paint on our next motor home, our PC.

Our 9 year old PC is garaged when we are not using it, so our paint job still looks brand new, and the Diamond Shield would look brand new too if not for a certain type of bug juice that has stained it in tiny spots.  But I wonder what our PC would look like if we did not protect it so well at home.

Regarding the thermal pane glass.  We ordered our PC with that 2-pane glass and it is great, especially when considering we have the big emergency window, and big rear window right next to our bed.  Our first motor home, we felt the cold radiate right through the plexi-glass above us and flow right down on our heads.  Keep in-mind that we do not camp in the winter time, but rather summer camping in the mountains where the nights can get down in the 40's and lower.  Spring & fall are other travel times for us in recent years and of coarse the weather is more unpredictable with cold nights in many regions.

The thermal glass is also more quiet, something we appreciate a lot when staying overnight in Walmart parking lots and rest areas which can be noisy.
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