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Old 08-24-2013, 06:24 PM   #1
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Thoughts on retrofits?

I checked out a 92 Sportsmobile today. The engine seemed in good condition and it rode well. There were a few things about the interior I wasn’t jazzed about, and I am wondering if any of you know how difficult it would be to upgrade/retrofit these items.

The van has deep cell batteries, but I guess there is no inverter, only 12v for the 2 way fridge. I would like to install an inverter so I can use an AC plug for a laptop or other small items. I am thinking I could do this (or have Sportsmobile do it) rather easily. The van has a side gaucho and the batteries are under this. I am ok with the AC plug being on the base of the gaucho. Am I right about this?

There is no AC (even though he listed it in the ad - grrr) except the standard van AC. Not a deal breaker, but I am curious if...
1) Would a roof mount AC be too high on a voyager top? (I think a Danhard AC would be too much of an investment for an old vehicle)
2) Would it be too hard to retrofit that into a completed Sportsmobile?

Finally, the van has a propane system but no hot water heater. Any thoughts on an easy way to get hot water going in the sink? The sink is located on the passenger side.

Thanks if you have any advice!!
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Old 08-24-2013, 10:51 PM   #2
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Re: Thoughts on retrofits?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpau00
I checked out a 92 Sportsmobile today. The engine seemed in good condition and it rode well. There were a few things about the interior I wasn’t jazzed about, and I am wondering if any of you know how difficult it would be to upgrade/retrofit these items.

The van has deep cell batteries, but I guess there is no inverter, only 12v for the 2 way fridge. I would like to install an inverter so I can use an AC plug for a laptop or other small items. I am thinking I could do this (or have Sportsmobile do it) rather easily. The van has a side gaucho and the batteries are under this. I am ok with the AC plug being on the base of the gaucho. Am I right about this?

There is no AC (even though he listed it in the ad - grrr) except the standard van AC. Not a deal breaker, but I am curious if...
1) Would a roof mount AC be too high on a voyager top? (I think a Danhard AC would be too much of an investment for an old vehicle)
2) Would it be too hard to retrofit that into a completed Sportsmobile?

Finally, the van has a propane system but no hot water heater. Any thoughts on an easy way to get hot water going in the sink? The sink is located on the passenger side.

Thanks if you have any advice!!
Yeah you can easily install a smaller inverter and wire/cut in a plug where you want. If you tie into the existing AC shore power system you should use the correct inverter made to do that. They are more expensive.

Yep an A/C on top of a voyager is tall but doable. There might be some lower profile units out there. I would think getting power to it might be costly but SMB should be able to suggest the cost of such a venture. Might be cheaper and easier to go with something other than a roof mount.

Doubt there is anyway to safely add a propane hot water heater inside other than a standard RV install at least I've never heard of anybody installing a portable unit inside. There are several add on units out there. The cheapest way might be to install a flat plate heat exchanger but the vans engine needs to be warm or running to get hot water. Of course you got to get the water to the sink. An outside water heater like a Zodi out of the question?
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Old 08-25-2013, 02:28 AM   #3
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Re: Thoughts on retrofits?

Pex?

Running pex is easy, and if you get the oetiker style clamps (http://flairit.publishpath.com/howtouse ... xcrimptool) the tool etc. is relatively cheap, and it's all available at HomeDepot.

The real problem is the hot water source and you can either cut a hole in the van for a Suburban or go with the Espar. Or live without and/or use a stove. Depends on if you're more comfortable cutting the body and running propane line, or cutting into the fuel system.

If you can't live without hot water, it might be a deal breaker- not impossible, but not quite as simple (in my opinion) as running 110v sockets and putting in an inverter.
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