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Old 05-07-2010, 09:51 AM   #1
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Best Options on New Sprinter?

I generalized the topic here in case anyone wants to chime in regarding their most- or least-favorite options when ordering the Sprinter.

I am ordering a 2010 EB to be converted into an EB-110S-like SMB and wonder if anyone could share their experience regarding a couple of specific options.

Suspension HD plus Dual Rear Springs plus Vibration Absorber: These all sound like a good idea, and the Springs option is recommended, but does anyone have an opinion on these options? Is it possible that in combination they would make the ride too stiff?

Idle Control, Adj: Would this come in handy even if there were no diesel-run appliances?

Comfort Suspension Seats: What the heck are they, and do they make a difference?

Instrument Cluster: What do you get if you DON'T get this? (More a question for Sportsmobile, I guess, but did anyone here NOT get this?)

Backup camera system: In Fresno, I saw a Lopes 55 with a nifty backup camera system installed in the dash. What's your favorite system?

Roof Rack Rails: I found a 14-foot galvanized steel roof rack at U.S. Upfitters (www.inlad.com) intended for contractors that bolts to the Sprinter roof rack rails ($410 and 750 lb. capacity). I intend to attach two removable solar panels to it (and maybe put the spare tire up there if necessary, and if I feel like Hercules). I am aware of the Aluminess racks, but they are way more expensive (likewise with the van ladders). Anyone know of other alternatives?

Incidentally, that U.S. Upfitters web site has all manner of Sprinter accessories, but I haven't seen mention of it in this forum.

Thanks!
Will Robinson
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Old 05-07-2010, 06:19 PM   #2
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Re: Best Options on New Sprinter?

Will

Congrats on the new SMB!

Suspension: John at Upscale Auto recommends his aftermarket Sprinter suspension kit. He's really helpful, I'd recommend contacting him about Sprinter suspension upgrades. http://upscaleauto.com/sprinter_store.htm Not sure about the stiff ride, but SMB conversions are usually heavy enough to avoid this, again, ask John.

Idle control-Useful if you idle the van a lot. Not sure that it's necessary.

Suspension seats-allow you to adjust the comfort of the seat to your body weight via a rotary dial control. These seats are intended for very rough road comfort. I've heard that the deluxe comfort seats in the Sprinter are really comfy. NB: The suspension seat option means that you can't install swivels on the seats.

Instrument Cluster-gives you steering wheel buttons and a nicer display in between the Speedo and Tach. You also get more information via the display. I think this is a must have option and it's not that expensive.

I'm not sure about the other topics, hopefully others will chime in!

HTH

RickL
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Old 05-08-2010, 04:24 PM   #3
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Re: Best Options on New Sprinter?

There are some posts around about spare tire swings for the Sprinters, so you wouldn't have to get it all the way to the roof.

Idle control is to ensure the diesel idles at high enough RPM there is not carbon buildup. I'd say it is a good idea, you'll have it if you need it.
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Old 05-08-2010, 11:11 PM   #4
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Re: Best Options on New Sprinter?

U need the adjustable idle control if u are going to use the Sprinter engine itself as a generator or air conditioning in a camp site. By raising the idle RPM you can help alleviate carbon build up in the EGM.

You do not need the suspension seats. Swivel seats are better and SMB does a good job of covering the stock upholstery with their ultra-swede. Don't forget to order seat heaters from SMB.

The Sprinter comes with 2 rails on top. If you install an awning that takes the left rail so SMB has to install an additional rail on the left to hold the solar panels. If you do that, make sure the extra rail installed by SMB is full length so you can mount a thule basket or whatever - makes the spare on top easier. BTW, the spare on top is not a bad idea - I almost did that myself but did not have a complete rail system to use.

Any upgrade to the suspension is a plus. I used the Sprinter Store for shocks and sway bar but if you can upgrade springs, etc. do it.

Leave out the propane heater and go for an Espar. It is much smaller, uses diesel and still will give you sufficient heat.

Regards,

Keith
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Old 05-09-2010, 03:33 PM   #5
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Re: Best Options on New Sprinter?

Rick, Jage, and Keith,

Thanks for your feedback. I actually had a lot of work done on my (now sold) Navion at Upscale Auto. I have a lot of respect for their work, but I'm going to wait until I've gotten a few trips under my SMB belt before I head up to Oregon. Most of what I had done to the Navion was immediately useful, but I made the mistake of adding a couple of things for future use and found that, not only did I not use them, but they added nothing to the resale value of the rig. We did have a swivel passenger seat, but my 5'4" wife was uncomfortable with the increased seat height, and we rarely used the swivel (of course, the Navion has twice the seats as the SMB). And we love back roads, so I'm leaning towards the suspension seat. I'll report back on their usefulness.

Keith, your comment about using the engine for air conditioning: I take it you mean via an inverter to an AC A/C, not the Sprinter air conditioner, right? Also, I like the idea of going all diesel, but I'm not clear on how the Espar is integrated with the hot water delivery and hot air blower. It looks like some units can do both, but they seem pretty new and I wonder how "tested" they are in the U.S. (or in SMBs). What's your experience?

I'm also considering the PrecisionTemp "TwinTemp Jr" setup, but it seems untested, and SMB says they've never installed it.

Finally, we have to pick a color for the Sprinter, but are having trouble choosing because the only places we can find to see them is online, and the colors look different depending on the website and the monitor we happen to be using. I'll be asking our local Freightliner rep if he has paint chips; but in case he doesn't, does anyone have suggestions?

Thanks everyone!

Will Robinson
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Old 05-09-2010, 05:51 PM   #6
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Re: Best Options on New Sprinter?

Regarding roof rack rails (these a stainless steel tracks that are installed in the roof and run for most of the length of the van):

It looks like the roof rack rails are an option on the 2010 Sprinter Vans. This is according to the SMB Sprinter Van sheet. Roof rack rails are option code D13 according to the Sprinter option codes book. It is beyond me why MB has made this an option!

HTH


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Old 05-09-2010, 11:15 PM   #7
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Re: Best Options on New Sprinter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by WillRobinson
Rick, Jage, and Keith,
Keith, your comment about using the engine for air conditioning: I take it you mean via an inverter to an AC A/C, not the Sprinter air conditioner, right? Also, I like the idea of going all diesel, but I'm not clear on how the Espar is integrated with the hot water delivery and hot air blower. It looks like some units can do both, but they seem pretty new and I wonder how "tested" they are in the U.S. (or in SMBs).
We only have the AC that comes with the Sprinter. Normally we travel north and after many years in a Eurovan seem to do ok with just the dash air. I did just get a portable swamp cooler to try out this year mainly for my dog. My Espar is the Airtronic which doesn't heat water. There is a lot of info on this forum about Espars. BTW, I installed a shorter passenger seat base for my wife who had trouble getting her feet on the floor. http://www.ourexcellentadventures.co...avigator-seat/

I have the metallic silver but had I had a choice, I most likely would have gone with a Jasper Blue Metallic.

Regards,

Keith
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Old 05-16-2010, 07:56 PM   #8
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Re: Best Options on New Sprinter?

We have the flat plate hot water device in our Sprinter so we idle the engine to create hot water as needed. The idle control keeps the engine running at a higher RPM as recommended for longer idling sessions. We do not have any of the other items on your list.

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