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Everything posted by zero

  1. The alternator - when the engine is running - sends 14 volts (more or less) to the "house" battery. If your power-center has a converter and a battery charger - then when plugged into "shore power" the battery charger also sends 13-14 volts to the "house" battery. If some reason, you started your engine while still hooked to "shore-power?" If that battery charger was on at the same time the alternator was charging the "house" battery - it would not hurt a thing. They both have a predetermined voltage that they shut off at. Usually 13.8 to 14.2 volts. So once voltage gets high - all charging stops (except for a slight trickle charge). If by some chance you have an old battery charger that just charges at a fixed rate and does not shut itself off - it still has no ill effect on the alternator and what it does. Two separate systems with each having its own voltage sensing - even when hooked to the same one battery. You could also tie in a third charge-source like a solar panel and it still would have no ill effects. Just curious. What model power-center and converter do you have?
  2. I'm not trying to be a wise-a*s, but "best" and "longest lasting" can mean very different things. To me, it's all about the best bang for the buck. I figure I will be using batteries for as long as I live. Thus, I figure any battery has a cost per year. There is no battery I know of that is more cost-efficient then a Walmart Marine-type deep-cycle type 24, 27, or 29. There are other batteries that will last 2,3, and even four times longer and they are priced sometimes 10 times more. RVs do not have any special needs that requires special batteries. Like ultra lightweight lithiums, or leak-proof AGMs and they all cost a lot more then standard flooded-lead-acid batteries like the ones I mentioned from Walmart. Some AGMs do not last any longer then standard batteries but you never have to add water to them and the terminals stay cleaner. Not something I'm going to pay twice the price for. The other nice thing about the Walmart batteries is they are 12 volt. That means they can be popped out and used in something else if wanted. One of my "house" batteries goes into a diesel tractor every winter that I keep a 6 foot snowblower on. The AGM battery you linked to cost more then 2 1/2 times what a Walmart battery costs with the same reserve power. Chances are - that AGM won't last any longer. Also if you have any warranty issues - I bet it is difficult to pursue them. I see no advantage other then it makes your wallet lighter. Now - if the seller gave you an unconditional 12 year warranty - I might feel otherwise. I did not mention golf-cart type 6 volt batteries that also give a lot of "bang for the buck." One reason being you must have two. One will not work.
  3. Thanks for the info on the Horizons. I found the answer on the other. I thought Muskeet was a company but was wrong. Musketeer Mfg. was the company that made the micro-mini Toyota and the Muskeet was one of their models.
  4. I have no idea what the other posters are talking about with the "circle." Your inverter takes low voltage DC and turns it into higher voltage AC. Plugging in the "shore power" cord into the inverter so you can use the already existing AC wiring and outlets in the camper is fine. Only possible "circle" I can think of - is if your try to use your AC to DC converter, powered at the input by the AC coming out of your inverter. THAT would indeed be circular (also makes no sense to do so) All it takes to not do so is have your converter turned off. Or in the case of my Minicruiser where the converter has its own AC plug, I just unplug it. We never camp anywhere that has "shore power" so we never use our AC to DC converter anyway. I think some terms are being confused here. All a converter does is make low voltage DC from higher voltage AC. RVs tend to have "power centers" that consist of a box that houses the AC breakers and wiring along with the converter. The converter itself has nothing to do with AC distribution.
  5. New Horizon and Horizon both made Toyota motorhomes. Were they two totally different companies? There are/were also Muskeet and Musketeer Toyota motorhomes. Same question.
  6. Hopefully you mean an "inverter" and not a "converter." Plugging your main "shore-power" cord into inverter works fine as long as there aren't any big loads on it (like the air-conditioner). Is it a 750/1500 watt surge inverter, or a 1500/3000 watt surge inverter?
  7. Here is what that Trombetta relay looks like under the hood of my Minicruiser with the Power-Stream chip wired into it.
  8. You can get a simple relay or a "smart" relay. Relay must be rated for "continuous duty." A simple relay is just a switch that is remotely turned "off" or "on." In the case or your RV, it gets hooked to an ignition wire. This way - any time your ignition key is "on" the relay also turns "on" and connects all the batteries together so they both charge. When the key is "off", the relay opens and the two batteries are separated. This way, when parked and the engine not running, you can use the "house" battery without worrying about draining the "cranking" battery under the hood. A "smart" relay does not need to be hooked to an ignition wire. It senses voltage and turns "on" and "off" automatically. When you first start the engine - the "cranking" and the "house" batteries are separated and only the "cranking" battery gets any charge. Once it is fully charged and its voltage rises above 13.8 volts - the relay automatically turns "on" and combines the "cranking" and "house" batteries. Then the "house" gets charged and once that is done - both get maintained. When you turn the key "off", they stay combined for a little while until voltage drops a little and then the relay opens and turns "off" automatically. The higher the amp rating, the longer the relay is apt to last. I use the Trombetta listed for $18.95. Mine is sort of a "hydrid." I used that Trombetta and then got just the control chip from Powerstream so mine is now a "smart" relay. Powerstream will sell just the control chip instead of the complete relay/chip unit if wanted.
  9. A relay cannot blow like an isolator can. An isolator will blow just like a fuse when enough amps go through it. Also there is no voltage loss with a relay. All rectifier-type isolators have around .6 or .7 of a volt of loss. That is a lot when you consider just that long run from the front to the rear already has loss. I would not be surprised if your isolator no longer works. Many I find on older RVs are blown. Easy to check with a voltmeter or continuity checker.
  10. Maybe. The guy at the Canadian junkyard just told me there is a 3% charge for parts that are not sourced from North America. He did not specify which country is charging it. Maybe it IS a USA thing and he has to pay it to cross into the USA. Great place to deal with.
  11. No. The one in that Craigslist ad is the guy who won't return my calls. So I gave up and called the junkyard in Canada. Ends up buying from Canada is cheaper and easier. I own land and a cabin near the other Sault Ste Marie in the USA. So all I have to do is call the Canuks a day ahead of time, and they will deliver across the border for me. Just the trans, clutch linkage, flywheel, clutch, etc. Not getting another engine.
  12. I've been searching all over for the parts needed to swap my 1988 Minicruiser with a 22RE to manual trans. 2WD trucks are pretty scarce around here and 4WD won't work. I just got a pleasant surprise. I found just what I need in Canada and they will bring the parts across the border for me (I am not allowed in Canada). $400 for everything. Flywheel, clutch linkage, G-series 5 speed trans, etc. Only slight catch is Canada has an extra 3% penalty for parts sold that did not originate from North America. Since 1988 Toyotas come straight from Japan, I get charged the extra 3%. I give a thumbs-up to William King & Son Salvage LTD in Sault Ste Marie, Canada. Free delivery to the other Sault Ste Marie in Michigan. Great people to deal with. I have been trying to deal with this guy that is 4 hours drive from me in the western UP but I give up. Cannot even get a return phone call.
  13. Depends on what specific vehicle. I agree with Derek that 185R-14C is one of the more popular choices. I suspect that is because it was standard equipment on Volkswagen campervans and is known to be a HD 14" tire. Toyota did not use D-rated tires OEM on duallies. Some new dual-wheel Toyotas came with P195/75-14 tires that I assume were swapped on by the coachmaker. Toyota did not ship them that way. I suspect a Toyota RV owner that has a factory sticker calling for P195/75-14" tires is likely to buy that size when replacements are needed. If you use the Walmart tire-size menu for a dual-wheel Toyota truck - it gives both choices.
  14. Here is the original isolator on my 1988 Minicuiser (I removed it and replaced with a relay).
  15. It is a Mark 5, Mark 6, or Mark 8? Did you look under the couch-bed? I've worked on 1985, 1986, 1987, and 1988 Minicruisers. They all had rear mounted batteries. My 1988 has an outside door on the driver's side to access the battery box. But mine is a Mark 19 that is 19 feet long. Your's ought to be 17 feet long and as I recall, the rear house battery is inside the coach somewhere. Look under the hood and see if there is a battery isolator. If so, just follow the wire from it that runs to the back. It has to lead to the house battery IF you have one. Note - the 1984 Nissan Minicruiser I had also had no power in the "house." I found the battery in a plastic vented box under the couch-bed and it was cracked and stone-dead. Here is a photo under the hood of a 1979 Minicruiser. I marked the battery isolator. Wire on the right is what runs back to the house battery.
  16. All with single tires that I know of. There is a Bandit I and a Bandit II. Some had super-wide Firestone L60s on the back.
  17. I want to convert my 1988 Minicruiser with a 22RE to manual trans. I've been searching for a parts-truck with all that I need. Come to find out that 2WD Toyota trucks are extremely rare around here. Many junked 4WDs. Very few 2WDs. I just found a 2WD that is a 1996 Tacoma with a 2.7 liter four-cylinder. Seems it is a more efficient engine then the 22RE. I'm wondering if it is worth swapping the entire engine and trans into my 1988. I have read info on many engine-swaps into Toyota trucks. Problem is - I have not read any such reports of swaps into trucks powering RVs. I don't really want to go through the work of a swap unless I see someone else who has done so and thinks it was worth it. I know the A43D auto trans I have robs 7-9 horsepower. I want a manual setup. I also would not mind having a more efficient engine if not too difficult a swap. I know a turbo-diesel is the best route as far as efficiency goes - but it is also expensive and a lot of work. I am also not convinced that older diesels are all that more efficient then some newer gas engines. The only swaps I've read multiple reports on are for Winnebago Lesharos and Phasars that went from French 2.2 liter gas engines to Buick or Mopar 3.8 gas engines. I've yet to come across an engine swap in a Toyota RV anywhere with any final results. Anybody know of any success stories? Not attempts. I mean rigs that got done with happy owners.
  18. Nice upgrade with the 5 speed trans too.
  19. Must be add-on dually kit. I have no idea where the 3.5 liter V6 claim comes from.
  20. Good deal for someone if it goes cheap. All the parts for a full-floater plus matching front wheels. V6 and manual trans setup.
  21. I said most are $30-$40 a can and from I see, that is what most have sold for. I have no idea where you are finding a "glut" of cheap ones. Here are the first five "sold" that come up on Ebay right now.
  22. The black wire from the "cranking" battery when wired by Toyota - was hooked to an 80 amp fuse. Certainly not a 30 amp fuse. Toyota used an 80 amp fuse with the 60 amp alternator, and a 60 amp fuse with the 55 amp alternator. Again - not very confusing if someone stuck a 30 amp fuse in there and it blew. Note that Toyota used slow-blow "fusible links" as main fuses, The main fusible link hooked to a Toyota-Denso 60 amp alternator is a short piece of 14 gauge wire with fire-proof insulation that needs pretty steady 80 amps of current to blow. What many if not most RV builders do is this. They cut the output wire from the alternator. Then splice new wire into it and then hook it to the middle post of the solid-state isolator (the "in" post). Then often the output the "house" battery has a fuse. Usually NOT to main battery. Your alternator via the regulator senses battery voltage and responds. If voltage is low enough in any of your batteries - it will try to send max output of 60 amps. It is as simple as that as far as the OEM system is involved. The only catch is . . . due to the isolator that only permits current flow one direction - the alternator never gets to sense actual battery voltage and has to "guess." I will note that in many older RV articles (from the 70s and 80s), it is warned that RVs with added isolators should not be revved up when first started or the added fuses can blow. Now - about your specific vehicle. I cannot tell if the alternator is still protected by the 80 amp fuse that Toyota put in there. It depends if the main output wire from the alternator was cut before it gets there and re-routed. If it WAS cut - this is what you should have. The main output wire from the alternator should run through a 80 amp fuse, and then to the isolator. Then - from the post on the isolator that does to your main "cranking" battery, no fuse is needed as long as that wire is 8 or 10 gauge. The post on the isolator that does to your "house" battery is a different story. If your "house" battery is in back somewhere and the wire is only 10 gauge - then it ought to be protected by a 30 amp slow-blow fuse, fusible-link, or circuit breaker.
  23. I have never seen any R12 ever at a yard sale or flea market. Maybe things are different in Florida. I did not search "completed sales" at Ebay since I find it a waste of time. I checked all that is actually for sale, right now, with a price (i.e. "buy it now"). Hey, to each his own. That includes opinions.
  24. I've heard propane works great for a refrigerant. Not brave enough to ever try it myself. The idea of having flammable propane running in rubber hoses in pressures up near 300 PSI is kind of scary. A burst hose and any kind of spark seems would make quite a bang or flame. R12 is harmless that way. In fact, the first shop I worked in we used a flame-tester for R12 leaks. That is before we knew that putting a flame to R12 makes a fatal nerve-gas.
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