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Old 08-10-2012, 08:32 AM   #161
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
Originally Posted by GreyEagle
Now is the time to label all those wires...........
<Listening to the voice of reason>

Most of them got terminated yesterday and I *did* remember what went where, but just. It's time to take time and label the lot while I still can.
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Old 08-10-2012, 11:02 AM   #162
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Re: The Roach Motel

I'm sure you already know but it is real important to get those lug nuts back on as tight as they were when you took them off or they will quickly work loose. I'll bet you can find a truck tire shop to hammer them tight for you at no charge.

You sure are making great progress. I probably missed it but what are your plans for the 2 side doors?
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Old 08-10-2012, 09:52 PM   #163
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Re: The Roach Motel

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I probably missed it but what are your plans for the 2 side doors?
The current plan is to bolt them closed and seal them up with caulk. At present they're pretty rattley and leaky. I'm also considering just pulling them off and sealing the opening with exterior plywood covered with a sheet of FRP. That will be the last section to be finished so I've got time to let the plan percolate.

I'm going to check those lug nuts right now.
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Old 08-11-2012, 08:46 PM   #164
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Re: The Roach Motel

Got the wiring all documented and buttoned up then set the coach batteries in place and plugged into shore power. Then I slowly....one circuit at a time... tested all the circuits. No fires, no tripped breakers and the batteries are charging nicely. Life is good.

The Trimetric battery monitor is also hooked up and works real well now that I (ahem) read the instructions again and got it hooked up properly. I originally had two of the leads hooked up wrong and the monitor was giving me some very weird readings. I mounted it above the driver's seat which makes it visible from almost anwhere in the bus. It can monitor two battery banks (voltage only on one bank) and also shows how many amps are being drawn and the state of charge. Tomorrow I'll get the starting batteries hooked up to it and I'll be able to monitor both battery banks as I drive. So far I'm very happy with it.
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Old 08-17-2012, 05:32 PM   #165
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Re: The Roach Motel

The propane alarm is hooked up and tested. Man, that thing could wake the dead!



I got a decent battery vent from Dyers RV that handled the "through the wall" part of the venting but I still needed something to attach to my battery box that would hook up to the vent and let me get the lid off the battery box easily. I finally cut down a sink trap and epoxied it into the battery box lid. To disconnect the vent I just unscrew the trap nut. As you can see, the wiring has been tidied up a bit.



Starting on the kitchen counter this weekend. I'll have to fit the sink, range, furnace and water heater into a 5' 10" counter and still have a decent amount of storage space.
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Old 08-17-2012, 09:01 PM   #166
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Re: The Roach Motel

Glad to see the tags on the wires! I'm going to do the same---HONEST---REALLY----
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Old 08-17-2012, 09:58 PM   #167
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
Originally Posted by ol trunt
Glad to see the tags on the wires! I'm going to do the same---HONEST---REALLY----
As the Great God Nike sayeth, "Just Do It"!

I planned my DC wiring with white ground wires and different colored power leads. Even got to re-use some of the wiring I pulled out of the beast when I stripped it out. When I drew up my breaker panel legend I listed all the circuits and the color of the power leads but the battery monitor, water heater and furnace all use white leads for non-ground wiring and those needed to be tagged. Thinking I should take another look at it and tag anything that's not totally obvious. Sure as hell I'll be scratching my head when I try to troubleshoot some goofy problem down the road.
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Old 08-18-2012, 08:26 AM   #168
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Re: The Roach Motel

TAGS ...............Way to go!!!!!!!!!!! CONGRATS...
You'll be glad you did.
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Old 08-18-2012, 08:59 AM   #169
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Re: The Roach Motel

Good wire tagging material...

Use one of those labelmaker machines like the "P"touch or the Dymo letra tag.

Brother P touch

Dymo Letra tag

Both these machines make flexible plastic labels that last a very long time. I put one on the food cart (using "standard" label tape) and it has been exposed to the weather for 3 years. NOW I do need to replace it but 3 years of being exposed to sun, rain and it still is readable. This particular label also got wiped several times a day with a mild bleach solution.

If you decide to get one of these (or any other brand) label machine, check the prices andavailability of replacement labels not just the original machine price. I bought my Dymo Label Manager 210D from Wal-Mart several years back. Shortly after I bought it, Wal-Mart stopped stocking the label tape. I now have to buy it online or at Office Depot ($23 to $27 per 23' tape cassette). With shipping getting so high & Amazon charging taxes now, it's getting to the point where it will be cheaper for me to buy a new label machine with a more popular tape. I have found these smooth super flexible labels to be VERY handy. I labeled my computer cables and connections with it. No more masking tape labels falling off or becoming unreadable. I go label mad with the things. Great for labeling the electric panel box or labeling the water filter with the brand & model # plus a few model #s of the filters we typically use because we only change filters twice a year... I can't remember the brands we can use so I write it down.... someplace. I also used the Black-on-White tape to label the shift positions on the bus' backlit automatic shifter. Works nicely. We don't normally drive at night, but you can see the diffused light and it makes the black letters stand out.
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Old 08-18-2012, 06:45 PM   #170
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Re: The Roach Motel

One of those would be sweet. I've used masking tape to label stuff and before long the tape is all dried out and falling off.
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Old 08-22-2012, 01:22 PM   #171
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Re: The Roach Motel

I'm being picked to death by petty Bureaucrats!

Back in December when I bought this beast I transferred my bus title and had the fine folks at the Michigan Secretary of State office (DMV) designate it as a motor home. At the time, the yearly registration fee was going to be $37. In July when it came time to renew the registration I get a letter telling me that I've been undercharged and the new registration fee will be $537. A fairly lengthy visit to the DMV got the problem sorted out but now the registration fee is $47/year. Reasonable enough.

Fast forward to Friday and ANOTHER letter arrives telling me that my registration and plates will be suspended if I don't cough up another $490 bucks. So back I go AGAIN to the DMV and endure ANOTHER lengthy wait. The girl behind the counter was very helpful but I could see she was getting a bit ticked off trying to get the main office to accept the change from commercial bus to motor home. FINALLY she (apparently) gets the thing straightened out and tells me that my new registration fee will be $27.

It gives me no confidence at all seeing my local government in action and I won't be surprised at all to get another letter in a month or two.
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Old 08-22-2012, 06:06 PM   #172
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Re: The Roach Motel

Kinda makes you want to move doesn't it! NM DMV (Or rather the dyslexic MVD) is a PITA too. I'll be glad when we can register everything in Livingston (TX) where they understand about RV's
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Old 08-22-2012, 10:03 PM   #173
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Re: The Roach Motel

Bet they don't anymore! It used to be said "if you can, do--if you can't, teach" Nowadays that axiom reads "if you can, do---if you can't, seek employment at the DMV

I know it's no laughing matter-- I ALWAYS get pissed off when I go to the DMV.

Roach, keep fighting for that $27 ?? rate --make us proud!
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:55 AM   #174
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Re: The Roach Motel

Credit where credit's due, the folks at the DMV have been pretty helpful. It's the nameless, faceless fools in Lansing that are causing the snafus. The less I have to deal with The Powers That Be, the better I like it.
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Old 08-27-2012, 03:12 AM   #175
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Re: The Roach Motel

Your lucky.
Where I am I get charged 745.00 a year and it went up from last year and will go up next year.
They hate any thing that is an RV or a "skoolie" here in Hawaii..
I came across a really really nice MC8 "bus" for 1,800.00; but they would only register it as a bus and that was the deal killer; $3,000 registration per year.. Another 3,000.00 for insurance.. PER YEAR..
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Old 08-27-2012, 09:09 AM   #176
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
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Your lucky.
Where I am I get charged 745.00 a year and it went up from last year and will go up next year.
They hate any thing that is an RV or a "skoolie" here in Hawaii..
I came across a really really nice MC8 "bus" for 1,800.00; but they would only register it as a bus and that was the deal killer; $3,000 registration per year.. Another 3,000.00 for insurance.. PER YEAR..
OUCH!!!!
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Old 08-27-2012, 09:20 PM   #177
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Re: The Roach Motel

Getting ready for another trip up north this weekend so I took Roachie out for a quick spin to charge the batteries and stretch it's legs. On the way home some bonehead pulled into my lane and jumped on his brakes to make a left turn. Naturally, i jumped on mine too. Hard. The brakes on this E-450 are impressive! They actually feel stronger than my van's brakes. The horn worked admirably well also.

Got the water heater installed. First I cut a distressingly large hole in the side of the bus. I've cut big holes in my vans over the years but it never gets any easier. The woodworker's creed is "measure twice, cut once" but on these occasions I measure a half dozen times then take a deep breath and carefully start cutting.



Next, the heater goes in and gets sealed up and screwed down. I used some of Lorna's favorite Henry stuff to seal the flanges. Very sticky stuff.



Here's the heater from the inside all plumbed in and mostly wired up. The furnace will mount above it.



Finally, here's the kitchen cabinet with the sink installed. The cutout is for the cooktop/oven. The end panel has both AC and DC outlets for a Dometic Coolfreeze powered cooler which we haven't pulled the trigger on yet and the panel is removable for access to the furnace, oven and water heater. Plumbing is all hooked up but I haven't tested it yet.



It's starting to feel a bit like home.
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Old 08-27-2012, 10:18 PM   #178
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Great progress. I always come back to the flooring, shower stall and nibbled bed corner--all just exactly right. Have fun on your run and post pics! Jack
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Old 08-28-2012, 09:16 AM   #179
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Re: The Roach Motel

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Great progress. I always come back to the flooring, shower stall and nibbled bed corner--all just exactly right. Have fun on your run and post pics! Jack
Thanx for the kind words, but if it's "exactly right" it isn't because of some awesome master plan of mine. A lot of stuff is where it is because it didn't fit where I originally wanted it to go. There's an awful lot of "plan B" here and even some plan C, D and E in spots.
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Old 08-28-2012, 09:53 AM   #180
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Re: The Roach Motel

I usually go to plan "X" before something finally fits together...
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