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Old 10-11-2007, 05:35 AM   #11
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does the electric lift run off the house battery? or chassis battery? do you need to run engine to run the electric lift?

my current ride: 2005 Roadtrek 190 Versatile
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Old 10-11-2007, 08:25 AM   #12
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The electric lift runs off of the house battery. You would only need to run the vehicle if the house was very low. I would ask SMB on the weight lifting capabilities of each option. I believe I was told that they could adjust the manual top to no more then 75 to 80 lbs. And that the Electric would handle up to 300 lbs. That was back in 2003 when I was visiting the factory. Obviously things could change, (and my memory gets worse every year). If you plan on putting a cargo box/or hauling other gear on top and don’t want to unload, I see this as I must have option.

Greg E350 EB V10

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Old 10-11-2007, 09:51 AM   #13
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I don't know about the electric lifting evenly, I've never loaded my top. However it does seem to go up and down unevenly when not level. The one nice thing about the electric is I can put it up and inch or so and push it into alignment by climbing on the bumpers.

I've never had the top not lift, but I've seen it visibly slower (hard to imagine with the top).

At SMB Texas Lonnie hopped in my van, threw off the clips and hucked the top "up" twice before I could stammer out "It's power!" Both times the top popped about 8" off the van and then back down. If you ran out of juice you could probably push up on the top to take the pressure off the mechanism and have enough juice to move the mechanism up- but you can't just push the electric up.
it was good to be back
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Old 10-11-2007, 10:12 AM   #14
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Thanks for that answer before I asked.... I was wondering last night if you could manually lift an electric penthouse...

So if the answer is no, is there a quick or easy way to unhook it so it can be done manually?

Does anyone have photos of the mechanism and switching for the electric version?

I had seen the tensioning instruction page way back when and forgotten it, now with more understanding I have a greater appreciation for the significance that exercise might have.
Greg in Austin
2008 Ford 6.0PSD EB/E-PH SMB 4X4 Aluminess f/r bumpers (13.5mpg avg, 15mpg hwy) 52k miles [Texas McBeast]
2006 Toyota Prius (48 to 68 mpg) 120k miles [Penelope]
2013 Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon (15 to 18 mpg) [Johnnie]
2012 Mitsubishi MiEV (no gas required) ($.50/day in electricity) [Evie]
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Old 10-11-2007, 03:20 PM   #15
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For the manual top, could you (safely) add a turnbuckle so you could more easily adjust the tension for varying weight loads?
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Old 10-11-2007, 09:29 PM   #16
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Some Pictures of the Electric Top Actuators

Link to actuator web page


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