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Shore power - what is supposed to work?

Hydraulic lift electrical

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#1 Cpratt

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Posted 22 June 2019 - 01:40 AM

Hi all, new owner of a 1997 8 ft cabover here. The previous owner basically didn't know anything about the camper and never really used it. I'm trying to wrap my head around how everything works, if it works.

Right now I have the camper plugged into the house with an extension cord. I have not yet purchased batteries, so none are installed. The interior lights work, but that's it. The hydraulic lift does nothing when I press the button (I've seen it operate on the previous owner's batteries), the water pump does nothing when I turn on the faucet, and I'm not sure the dometic fridge is doing anything (it's been plugged up for a few hours and the interior temp has not changed. It's set to electric). Is all this normal? Shouldn't everything work when plugged into shore power, even if there are no batteries?

Thanks in advance!
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1997 8 ft Alaskan cabover, 2005 Ram 3500

#2 CougarCouple

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Posted 22 June 2019 - 02:19 AM

Hello Cpratt
I would suggest that you contact the manufacturer and ask if they can provide some assistance or maybe even their customer operations manuals.
Sometimes shore power only operates those appliances which are 120 volt, like an air conditioning for example. Also enabling the battery charger, the battery is what operate all the 12 volt appliances, water pump etc. Sorry can't help more, but the manufacturer would be the best way to try first in my opinion.

Russ
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#3 larryqp

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Posted 22 June 2019 - 12:36 PM

My guess is that without batteries installed, there are many open circuits. Since you are going to want the batteries in the camper anyway, install the required # of deep cycle batteries. I'm pretty sure everything will work properly. Getting the manuals from the manufacturer as CougarCougle suggests is a great idea, you'll need them, many times they are downloadable as a PDF.


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2016 F150, FX4, XLT super cab

2019 FWC Hawk Shell- on order

2009 Ford Ranger 4x4, XLT, Supercab total loss on 7/30/19

2014 FWC Shell total loss on 7/30/19

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#4 Old Crow

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Posted 22 June 2019 - 01:23 PM

You may want to read through this 1969 Alaskan Owner's Manual.  If nothing else it will give you some background info and I see it has troubleshooting guidelines for both electrical and hydraulic systems.  Yes, that's for a '69 but truck campers are slow to change and you may find useful info there.

 

Good luck!


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'01 FWC Hawk shell on a '13 Tundra Double-Cab  + '94 Econoline sport-top campervan


#5 Cpratt

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Posted 22 June 2019 - 07:21 PM

Thanks, all, for the replies. That 1969 manual is helpful for understanding the basics, and I emailed Alaskan asking for manuals and any other resources they have for 1997 models. And batteries are on the way. The project begins...
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1997 8 ft Alaskan cabover, 2005 Ram 3500

#6 kmcintyre

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Posted 23 June 2019 - 12:04 PM

I don't know about AK's but FWC/ATC the shore power does different things depending on if you have an inverter which I'm pretty sure you do.  It could power just about everything and charge the batteries.  As someone else pointed out, w/o the batteries I'm not sure if things like the refrig would work or not; probably depends if it works off the batteries or hard wired to the inverter.  I would think it runs off the batteries while the batteries are charging otherwise everyting would be hardwired to the inverter which would be a lot more complicated to wire.


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#7 Wandering Sagebrush

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Posted 23 June 2019 - 01:36 PM

I don't know about AK's but FWC/ATC the shore power does different things depending on if you have an inverter which I'm pretty sure you do. It could power just about everything and charge the batteries. As someone else pointed out, w/o the batteries I'm not sure if things like the refrig would work or not; probably depends if it works off the batteries or hard wired to the inverter. I would think it runs off the batteries while the batteries are charging otherwise everyting would be hardwired to the inverter which would be a lot more complicated to wire.


I believe you’re meaning converter, not inverter. Yes, DC circuit power probably depends on which bus the circuit is wired to. Something that has a large current draw (jacks, had pump) are good candidates to be on the battery bus.
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#8 Denver Alaskan

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Posted 23 June 2019 - 04:15 PM

Being old and simple, I have a simple way to remember the difference between a converter and an inverter.  A Converter contracts 120 volts to 12 volts, whereas an Inverter increases 12 volts to 120 volts. To keep it simple, my memory aid ignores the difference between direct current and alternating current.  


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#9 kmcintyre

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Posted 24 June 2019 - 01:28 AM

Thanks you guys for straightening me out on Converter vs. Inverter... I guess I could see you needing/wanting both but surely these campers have converters when you hook to shore power :-).


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#10 michaelvk

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 02:43 AM

I know the isn't directly related but does anyone know where the 7pin 12v connector or cord located on the outside of a 1994 fleetwood elkhorn 9t? Mine appears to be missing.


Edited by michaelvk, 09 August 2019 - 02:38 PM.

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