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Showing content with the highest reputation on 12/31/2023 in all areas

  1. I took the time and read up on the 'Smart' Plug. I didn't find any evidence that the Smart Plug is a better product than the power receptacle that was supplied when the Oliver was delivered. But, wanting to give it the benefit of the doubt and in the interest of sharing accurate and reliable product information, I offer the following information: From their website, under the heading About Smart Plug: Our vision... Smart Plug Systems is a privately held manufacturing firm specializing in power delivery systems. It was founded in 2007 and is located in Seattle, WA. Its flagship product, the SmartPlug, is a patented device positioned to replace the current power delivery system for RV’s, Boats, and a variety of specialty vehicles and miscellaneous industrial applications. Every corporation has to have a Vision Statement, Right? Designed to be versatile Developing and providing innovative world-class solutions that make power delivery safer, more secure, and easier to use. Continuing our aggressive growth strategy and expanding far beyond the domestic recreational power delivery market to industries and geographic locations that can leverage our technology. We’re just getting started Establishing strategic partnerships and building long-term relationships with our suppliers, customers and the consumer. Sustaining a preferred work environment that will create positive share-holder value while maintaining a high level of innovation, quality, and customer service. This nothing but corporate techno-babble and tells us nothing about the Smart Plug. Here is additional BS from their website... Contrary to popular belief, the #1 cause of shore power failure and fires is not electrical shorting, but rather overheating caused by poor electrical conductivity. This is very true...but, on our Oliver’s, not for the reasons stated below How does this happen? The problems with many plug designs are that the shape of electrical pins allow for very little contact area, and the pins themselves are also largely responsible for bearing any physical stress placed on the cord (from constant movement of the boat, someone tripping on the cord, etc…) This is partly correct. There is plenty of surface contact area on the standard Oliver supplied power cord. Last I checked these are NOT boats moving around while attached to shore power. This results in the pins working loose, further lessening the precious little contact area they had to begin with. Furthermore, such loose connections allow for moisture intrusion and ultimately corrosion of the pins. This does Not apply in our situations. Arcing occurs and the connection heats up, scorches, and in some cases, catches fire. Because the current draw is unchanged, all of this happens long before a breaker or a GFCI can cut the power. Additionally, the old design can be very difficult to use in low light or hard-to-reach scenarios since the “L” shaped pin must first be located and then oriented before connection. The actual #1 cause of shore power failure and fires is not electrical shorting, but rather overheating caused by poor electrical conductivity, not from the pins in the connectors but from the screw connections between the pins and the supply wires not being tight. This has been the source of the problem in every overheating situation I’ve seen or heard about concerning Our Oliver's. Then I decided to go right to one of the vendor’s that supply this product for their say in the matter. In about an hour long chat session, this was revealed... Ashley: Hi! Can we answer a question for you? If not, feel free to close out this box. Steve: I am curious about your Smart Plug product. I am familiar with the plethora of other "smart" products like smart phones, thermostats that can be adjusted via an app on my phone, Alexa etc. What is it about this product that makes it Smart? 'SMART' OBJECTS Ashley: Hi Steve! Let me get you some information for you Ashley: There really is no "Smart" Feature as you are thinking about, but here is the description: SmartPlug is the highest quality electrical plug in the RV industry. This is the ultimate solution to replacing your standard twist plug, and it completely eliminates typical heat issues due to poor electrical contact. The standard twist plug that comes on many RVs has problems with electrical transfer because of minimal contact from the plug to the inlet. The SmartPlug has 27 times more contact and this makes for efficient electrical transfer and drastically reduces the heat on the plug. If you have a standard twist plug on your RV then you need to get that changed to the Smart Plug today! Steve: What is the amount of surface area that is contained in the Smart Plug in square inches? I'm confused about how their contacts are 27x larger than normal. Ashley: Let me see if I can find you a video I am going to post a link below to one of our Installation videos. Let me know if it helps https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jTkd_nMW-sw Steve : Let me take a quick look at the video. I have other questions. Ashley: Ok, sure Steve: This appears to be nothing more than an installation video. Can you tell me more about the claim that this product has 27x the surface contact area of other plugs. How was that determined. For instance, if a standard RV plug has say 2 square inches of surface area spread between the contact legs then your claim would be that your plug has 54 square inches. How is this possible? Ashley: I am not exactly sure why the manufacture claims that. I am trying to find some more information on it. Steve: OK, Thanks... Ashley: "27x more electrical contact than the old twist type connector" This is all I can find; I am unable to get an exact explanation. Steve: Thank you for all your help Ashley. But can we agree that this plug is really no better or worse than a standard plug and there is no way to cram in 54 square inches of contact surface area? Yes, No? Ashley: Apparently, they are claiming that is 27x more that the "Old Twist Plug" According to your logic, no it does not make sense. However, I couldn't find enough of an explanation to really say one way or the other what exactly they are comparing it to. Steve: Ashley, I want to apologize to you for putting you on the spot like this. I realize that you could not possibly know all the technical details of the products your company sells. I just could not find this information published anywhere, and I wanted to see if there was information I was missing. I'm sorry. You're a good sport. Ashley: Absolutely! No need to apologize, I couldn't find it either and you brought up a very good point. It is extremely vague about what they are comparing it to. I would like to think I know enough about what we sell but sometimes, unfortunately, I met my match. Is there anything else I can help you with today? Steve: No, we’re good. Ashley: Ok! Have a good day! I didn't find any evidence that this is a better product than the power receptacle that was supplied when the Oliver was delivered. If any of you want to change your plugs out, go ahead. Or, you could just make sure the screws are tight instead.
    5 points
  2. A good example of the DYI Pros that trailer batteries are considered as a matched set. One fails, best to either run one less battery, or replace them all. Lesson reminded. GJ
    5 points
  3. @Ronbrink Thank you for the detailed reply. Hopefully your son will find the solution tomorrow. I don’t think it has been mentioned in the original or any follow up post about batteries, but when I am working with batteries I always disconnect the negative/B- cable first and cover the terminal with nonconducting material to prevent any unintended contact with a ground source which will re-energize the circuit. If I am removing the battery, I will then disconnect the positive/B+. I reassemble in the reverse order. I will add that some people place the battery disconnect switch on the negative side of the battery. Good luck, Mossey
    4 points
  4. Being a welder with the skills and the equipment, I can't justify $1250 for a box. I may wind up building one when I am bored.
    4 points
  5. Happy 123123 day! The end of a year, the promise of new beginnings and new adventures!
    3 points
  6. I bought this Eley Quick Connect System product for all hose connections in my setups. Think one-handed operation! The components. Water pressure regulator and filter configuration. Eley installed at Oliver water inlets. Protective caps in place, utilized chain hardware from original stock caps Caps purchased.
    3 points
  7. So I’m still thinking about your attempted battery cutoff install. And the forum is a tough format for troubleshooting, kind of like a visually impaired art critic In order to have the 12v lights fading on and off and the radio making strange noises after disconnecting the B+ cable, there must have been 12v somewhere in the trailer that wasn’t coming from the battery. So I have a couple of questions. 1. Was the house battery negative disconnected or just the positive? You didn’t mention the B- cable. 2. I hate to do this, but I assume the tow vehicle was not connected, correct? 3. Your forum signature states that you have a Renogy DC-DC installed, which I have no working knowledge of. Is it installed in the Oliver? Does it only work with the ignition on? Does it have the ability to store energy, maybe an internal capacitor? 4. You might try turning off all 12v breakers and removing fuses. Verify the power is off with the Victron Smart Shunt app or a DC clamp on Amp meter. Then remove the main battery fuse as a different method of disconnecting the 12v supply from the battery. At least you would be inside if the fireworks started again. I’ll keep thinking of troubleshooting methods because I hate being baffled by the unknown. Mossey
    3 points
  8. Thanks to everyone for their help and I apologize for the misleading terminal covers! I took the new and really dead battery to Batteries Plus for testing. Their testing showed it was low enough that they assumed it was a broken battery. They were able to get it to hold a charge but said the numbers were jumping around a lot which they thought was strange. I was able to return the battery at Camper World and then went to West Valley RV and bought 4 Interstate batteries for about $150 less than I would have paid for the Camper World batteries. Since then everything has been fine. 🙂 What a strange thing that putting that one battery in caused such bizarrely high readings - at least when hooked up. (When I took the batteries off the circuit the new one read dead and the others read 4 something. ) We're camping a couple of hours west of Phoenix now - thanks again for all your help 🙂
    3 points
  9. May the New Year be safe, happy and filled with many great Ollie adventures. Bill
    2 points
  10. Same. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. All the twist locks I've used over the years work fine with the exception of that ridiculously flimsy, woefully and ineffectively threaded, plastic locking ring.
    2 points
  11. Glad everything is back in working order and you were able to move out of the hotel! I do have at least one question, how was it determined that only one battery was bad to begin with? I don’t think you mentioned that in your initial post. Mossey
    2 points
  12. White van, white Oliver, looks like a nicely matched set! 😊
    2 points
  13. And, here I was being "nice" - look where that got me. Of course you can borrow it. Rusty bolts used in making a homemade tool certainly can't cost that much more than a buck. 😆
    2 points
  14. My factory installed our EMS remote display was installed under the street side bed. This was a great location for me because I then got the choice of where to move it to. I found out while researching a new location that I could purchase another remote display and link both the displays together in a mast/slave configuration. Ultimately I just decided to move the original display to a more convenient location, as shown below. My normal new site setup entails testing all outlets available at the pedestal. When I have determined the outlet I will connect to, I’m pretty confident it will work at that time, so the inside upper cabinet location is fine for me. If at a later time a condominium moves in next door and interrupts our power supply, resulting in reduced voltage, all I have to do is move the picnic tablecloth and the display with an error chart taped to the wall above it, allows for pretty quick troubleshooting. And if it’s raining or snowing, I don’t have to go outside to verify the pedestal is providing the correct voltage Mossey
    2 points
  15. I wanted to add more capacity to my factory 340 watts because you have to remember those are rated watts not what you actually get to use, and the amount you actually get to use depends on where you are located and weather conditions. What I ended up with was additional Zamp panels, three 90 watts and two 45 watts equaling 360 watts. I went this route because it was the easiest way to fit them on the roof and merge them with the existing panels. Another consideration is when parked in partial shade the individual 12 volt panels wired in parallel that is shaded is the only one that is affected by that shading unlike when you have panels wired in series. So I have a total of 700 rated watts on the roof and in prime conditions here in Minnesota I can harvest a little over 500 watts. With that said it makes it harder for me to justify a dc to dc charger for when traveling for it has no problem keeping my 400 amps of Battleborns charged up. So far I'm happy with the outcome of the upgrade.
    2 points
  16. Disadvantage are that it becomes a unique connection on my extension cord. Or finding a replacement while on the road would be more difficult as well compared to our OEM. So long as our OEM is working, I'll pocket the $140. GJ
    2 points
  17. Thanks everyone, I really do appreciate your advice and decided on the 2 way. I love this forum!
    1 point
  18. I don't follow your logic. Are you using the term "converter" to refer to your inverter? When boondocking, my Xantrex inverter supplies 120V power, inverted from the 12V power supplied by my battery bank. When connected to shore power, my battery bank, not my inverter, supplies all 12V power in the trailer. But, my Xantrex inverter/charger recharges the 12V batteries when connected to shore power. And, when connected to shore power, my inverter supplies 120V power to the trailer in "bypass" mode, i.e., "bypassing" the inverter altogether. Since our Norcold runs on either 120V AC or 12V DC power, our Oliver trailer is wired for both. The logical choice for me would be a 120V/12V model, since the wiring should already be in place, and we could run the fridge on 120 when connected to shore power. Any other views from you engineer types on the forum?
    1 point
  19. I checked them with a volt meter and found 3 at 13 something and one that was dead.
    1 point
  20. I've made some changes to the publication of the Oliver Outfitters Guide in our Blog this week. The list we've maintained features the most popular camping equipment as purchased and used by Oliver Owners. When you click on the link inside our blog, you'll connect to a personal Oliver Outfitters idea list on Amazon. The purpose of this list is to keep track of the various great items useful for Oliver Owners. NOTE: The idea list is not compensated. ( As of November 30, 2023, Amazon's Idea Hub has been retired. This means that Idea Lists can no longer be linked to web-pages for compensation.) Here's the link to our blog where we've captured the non-compensated but still useful idea lists. https://4-ever-hitched.com/ggs-blog/f/oliver-outfitters-guide Happy New Year Craig Hull -505 Galway Girl
    1 point
  21. Reflecting on 4 years of ownership, we posted a whole host of articles in the Galway Girl Blog Site today. We're trying to provide a place for new owners to find out about various gear for their Oliver. The most recent articles are here: All Camping Equipment Reviews on GG Blog Happy New Year to All Rose and Craig Hull505 - Galway Girl
    1 point
  22. Always, always, but always disconnect the negative terminal first! I believe I shared the story about trying to arc weld a wrench to a Huey airframe.😳
    1 point
  23. No doubt, as well as Amazon. However these Eley connectors are commercial grade, made with quality materials to ensure longevity and safe drinking water, of bigger overall size for a full 3/4” unobstructed flow, have serviceable o-rings and a 10-year warranty! You definitely get what you pay for IMO. That said, I also have been very pleased with several of the Gorilla Easy Connect hose terminal ball valves/couplers/nozzles, which I will share with if anyone is interested.
    1 point
  24. Ron, thanks! I have a bunch of the brass couplers, but didn’t have a source for the threaded caps. I’ve found the brass tends to start binding after exposure to dirt/dust.. I’ve used WD 40 on the couplers we use around the yard, but suspect food grade silicone would be a better choice for a RV. Edit: Just looked at the price on the Nelson couplers😳. Go to a tractor supply and find them at 1/3 the price. They’re all probably made in China.
    1 point
  25. I added an ‘Edit’ to my last, which may be of interest!
    1 point
  26. I prescribe to the Less-is-More philosophy. My wife and I have two stainless steel double walled coffee cups. That's it. If neighbors come by, they better bring their own cups if they want to sample the good stuff.
    1 point
  27. In the case of 6v batteries, run with 2 less. 2 x 6 = 12. Half amperage, but entirely doable,,with power management. I have a number of friends with sob trailers, who boondock (carefully, for few days) with one 12v battery. As have we, in sob campers.
    1 point
  28. Sorry I’m late to this topic! This is what I use, since I don’t own a 1/2" Allen wrench! Mossey
    1 point
  29. Riverside Campground, Gila Box Riparian National Preservation Area, Safford, AZ. BLM campground $5/nt. Worth the 3 mile drive in on mostly paved, mostly single lane road.
    1 point
  30. For anyone interested, I posted more details about our experience building the garage on our blog, including some pricing and the vagaries of construction schedules.
    1 point
  31. First, I would buy spare fuses for all the sizes and types your trailer has. The trouble shooting process that likely will follow WILL likely result in your needing them. 😞 GJ
    1 point
  32. No. Emergency situations while in the bush are addressed under Forum Rule 12.34B and you are allowed to communicated in any way such events. Also, they are not considered as hijackering. Something that this owner never does and can't even spell the work correctly. GJ
    1 point
  33. That was my first thought, but on the second trial there was no 120v input and the result was the same. I am still hopeful for a switch install, but need to first understand a ‘fix’ or ‘workaround’ for the anomalies experienced. I see where others have installed such switches, even directly atop the batteries, but do not recall any talk of resulting adverse conditions. Thanks for your valued input.
    1 point
  34. I'm assuming this is a steel building? If they use roll up doors, there won't be anything over the trailer, but they'll need enough height for the rolled up doors at the ends. For our conventional garage doors we installed side mount door openers instead of hanging them over the bays. They're very nice.
    1 point
  35. That seems like a good size. However, if you build a pull-through, you lose any storage on the back wall. Something to consider if you want to store some camping gear in there, too. We just built a 30'x30' wood framed garage with two bay doors, each 10' wide by 12' high, and some storage/work area on the side. The trusses are 14' up. The 10' wide doors are fine for an Oliver. No trouble backing in. I use a traffic delineator post as a target for the rearview camera. You can see it in one of the photos. (We couldn't do a stripe on the floor because our dually's hips block my view of the trailer wheels.) We didn't install a 30A plug because we don't intend to run the trailer A/C in there, but we do have a 20A circuit for battery charging, etc.
    1 point
  36. RustyMD , I had our “Ollie Hangar” built at our home in July of 2022. I had a 13’W X 55’L slab poured and contracted with a company out of Mt Airy, NC to have our Ollie Hangar custom built. We decided on 11’H X 13’W X 25’L steel structure. We keep our Ollie plugged into 30 amp while stored here. We presently have 4 car attached parking 3 upper garages and a lower basement garage just did not need a 5th enclosed garage. This open air metal building aka hangar has really worked out well for washing and waxing our Ollie and keeping out of the weather and especially the UV. Needless to say, it’s a real plus having our Ollie parked at our home and under cover. Also note: I have plenty of room to wash and wax our Ollie. Have fun deciding what to build that suits your needs! Patriot🇺🇸 This is where we plot and plan our trips and tell a few true camping stories around the fire - aka base camp. 😊
    1 point
  37. We use the washable, reusable, and recyclable version of those very cups! My dad would give each of us kiddo's one washable, reusable and recyclable red solo cup with our initials Magic Markered for us to keep track. I actually got four camping trips out of my cup. 🙂 GJ
    1 point
  38. 1 point
  39. Installing an inverter is a big job involving running big wires. And upgrading the batteries. If you can’t do the work yourself it will cost thousand$. Consider one of these instead. EcoFlow RIVER 2 Max Portable Power Station I think the capacity is a little marginal, bigger units are coming out soon, they will have the new excellent lithium iron phosphate battery. John Davies Spokane WA
    1 point
  40. The worst problems I’ve seen while assisting other owners with electrical problems has always been loose connections. The fact that this setup requires you to cut the molded female plug off your existing power cable and replace it with the smart plug indicates to me there will be some screws involved in the attachment of the new connector. To me, herein lies the potential for future issues. Every melted wire I’ve ever seen has been due to a loose or frayed screw connection. If the system included molded plugs on a 40 foot cord, I’d like it a lot better. Of course, then it would cost $300.
    1 point
  41. I have never had an issue with the twist lock style plugs. For me, it’s a solution in search of a problem.
    1 point
  42. Oliver will not make any substitutions or modifications during the construction phase. They probably would be willing to make the swap in service before delivery. If you have the ability to do it yourself, you should.
    1 point
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