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My '04 Hawk

FWC Hawk mods

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#11 wuck

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 05:01 AM

A few more interior pics. Not sure when the front/side cabinets were added, they have different carpet on them but I suspect they are originally from FWC or whoever built them used FWC supplied lumber and brackets. The spot under the drawer used to house the 30 amp shore power cable in a large tangled mess, I've since deleted it. The large hole was for a Tracer MT-5 monitor, I removed and returned it due to the crappy LCD on it.

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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 


#12 wuck

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 05:27 AM

While debating with myself about which truck to get I was getting to know every system in the camper, doing some repairs, and a few upgrades. First up - Lift Thingies!! With a fantastic fan, a pair of solar panels and an extended cabover it was pretty tough for this old fart to lift the roof. But WTW to the rescue with the official "roof lifting helper shocks thingys" thread, all 31 and growing pages. I ordered the 40# struts directly from Suspa, and offset brackets from "StrutYourStuff" on ebay. The brackets weren't exactly what I thought, but a big vise and an adjustable wrench fixed that. On the rear, I chose to spread the brackets out over the door as a previous owner had put a large bolt through the header, I wasn't sure what had been compromised in there. Thanks to WTW and the thread, installation was a snap, and what a difference!

 

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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 


#13 wuck

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 06:25 AM

Now, I turned my attention to the electrical, particularly the solar system. The PO didn't know anything beyond "We hosed the panels off and went". I suspected an old bad battery, as the voltage was at 10.2 when we looked at the camper. PO and I decided the battery was original, 10+ years old. It was late in the day, not much sunshine on the roof so a real test drive of the solar was kind of tough. The panels appeared to be good quality, there were two charge controllers and something was happening, so I signed off and bought it it. Oh well.

 

The 10 year old 130 lb battery had a bad cell, bummer. I installed an extra car battery I had laying around the shop, I could test the rest of the system with it. I found one of the two panels (Kyocera KC-50 50 Watt) to be putting out 9 volts, half the rated voltage, only half the panel was working. Ouch! I disconnected that panel, leaving the remaining panel up to charge the test battery. After some other chores, I was sitting in the camper and heard - The Battery Boiling!! My DVM showed 16-17 volts on the battery, not good. After a few more measurements I knew both controllers were bad. Turning to the defective panel, I opened the j-box and found - Diode Bits! Lots of blown-to-smithereens diode bits. Summing all this up, I figured somebody had connected the battery backwards, blowing the controllers and the diodes in the panel. But, in all this lady luck was here.

 

A surplus UPS battery (CSB HRL 12500W) from a data center appeared in my yard a few days later. This one checks in at about 100 aH, 106 lbs, AGM, had basically been float charged all its life except for 2 or 3 calls to duty. It was changed out as regular preventative maintenance. 

 

The blown diodes were replaced with suitable diodes from my parts drawer (Doesn't everybody have a drawer full of diodes?), the panel was restored to like new performance.

 

I wanted to upgrade the controller anyway, a Tracer 20 amp MPPT fit the bill for about $115. I added an MT-5 display to it, but the display LCD was very poor quality and showed signs of internal delamination, so I returned it. For now, I'm content with a voltmeter to let me know what is happening with the system.

 

 

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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 


#14 ski3pin

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Posted 27 May 2015 - 01:52 PM


The blown diodes were replaced with suitable diodes from my parts drawer (Doesn't everybody have a drawer full of diodes?), the panel was restored to like new performance.

 

 

This is fun, thanks for documenting your repairs.


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#15 wuck

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Posted 10 June 2015 - 05:16 AM

The parts drawers do come in handy on occasion :)

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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 


#16 wuck

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Posted 10 June 2015 - 05:37 AM

With the solar now functional, I turned my attention to inspecting the remaining wiring. We were getting ready for a three week trip, I wanted to know where stuff was stuffed, and how it worked, and do a general inspection. By now, I figured there was no converter/charger, there was no battery charging when the camper was attached to shore power, and I hadn't found one. Then, while poking around behind the alarms, there it was! The hidden DLS-30 Iota charger/converter. It took a bit to get it out, alarms, plumbing, wiring and very tight quarters conspired against me. But, I persisted, and out it came. On the bench, no output. A fuse next to the terminals proved difficult to remove, until I found the secret screws clamping it in. Blown! Checking the manual, this is the "Reverse Polarity Protection Fuse". Yep, as I suspected, the battery had been connected backwards. A new fuse was installed, and fortunately the old one had done its job. The Iota came to life, and was reinstalled into it's cubby hole.

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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 


#17 wuck

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Posted 10 June 2015 - 06:21 AM

New Truck!!

 

I installed some eyebolts in the old camper special, and loaded up the camper with a few things bound for the dump. It is the closest scale available to me, very accurate, and the truck has been there a few times so I know what it weighs. The Hawk came in at about 1200 lbs, which with a bit of massaging I came come pretty close to adding the options up to that.

 

I had been reading the great GVWR debates here on WTW, but I had another experience. Many years ago, I had a '68 F-100 Ranger, it had also come to me from my dad via a brother. As you might have figured out if you read this far, I enjoy fixing things and was once a mechanic. I spent more than a few hours bringing the F-100 back, tuning, rebuilding suspension, and finally a new coat of paint. About this time, we got the idea of finding a camper to take our kids out in. We found a large old hard-sided camper (had no clue about FWC, this was several years before the Internet), bought it, loaded it up and went camping. It scared the crap out of me to drive it. When I got home, I went over the numbers and figured my F-100 could carry about 800 lbs. Huh. It was soon replaced by an F-250, and I've had one ever since.

 

I was very interested in the new (Aluminum) F-150, but the lack of a HD payload package with the short bed steered me away. The F-150 would work, but be close to GVWR. I use a spreadsheet when backpacking (My personal GVWR drops every year) but didn't want to load my camper with one. The next decision was gas vs diesel, from which I put off by the $10k price increase, increased maintenance costs, maybe not such a good mileage increase with the newer diesels, and my lack of experience maintaining or repairing anything diesel.  It all sounds easy, but I wrestled with it for weeks. Just ask my wife :)

 

So, here it is. 2015 Super Duty F-250, Super Cab, Short Bed, 6.2l gas V8, 6 speed auto, Fx4.

 

 

 

 

 

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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 


#18 Stan@FourWheel

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Posted 10 June 2015 - 07:19 AM

Is the cabover portion of the camper sitting on the roof of your truck cab?
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#19 wuck

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Posted 10 June 2015 - 02:46 PM

Is the cabover portion of the camper sitting on the roof of your truck cab?

 

Wow, Stan knows his stuff, of course  :)

 

Yes, in that picture I was test fitting and slowly lowered the camper while watching the cabover, I knew it was tight before starting. I wouldn't say it was sitting on it, but kissing might be a better description. The Hawk came off and I added a spacer before driving off to the Sugarloaf Rally. 

 

It turns out the cabover ply is sagging a bit, I suspect there is some water damage to it. I haven't measured yet, but it looks to be maybe 1/2 to 3/4 inch. I plan on replacing the ply, Colorado CJ has provided a detailed write up on his Keystone rebuild thread.

 

Stan, this is the camper originally purchased by Chet F. that we talked about it a bit at the rally.


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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 


#20 wuck

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Posted 15 June 2015 - 04:21 AM

Had my new truck for less than 12 hours, have to drill holes in it now, of course. Factory bed liner was already in there, didn't need to get that done.  I added cast lifting rings, with a hardened washer on top and a 2x2x1/4" steel plate underneath for reinforcement. 

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With the clearance issues I built a 2x4 spacer for now along with a front bumper as there were none on the camper.

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PO had supplied me with the factory Marinco electrical connector.

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Man, don't you hate it when they look at you like this?

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Pat

'04 FWC Hawk

'15 F250 SD SuperCab / Short Bed

SuperDuty Mileage (Fuelly)

Trip Photos on Flickr 






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