Sunday, January 22, 2023

DIY DC-to-DC Chassis Battery Trickle Charger (Trik-L-Start Alternative?)

You've probably heard that the Trik-L-Start DC-DC battery trickle charger has been discontinued, the only commercially available alternative is the Echo 15-Amp Charger by Xantrex. The Echo Charger is quite expensive at around $150 and only compatible with lead acid batteries.

I wanted to add a chassis battery trickle charger from my Solar Charge controller's auxiliary output but couldn't find an inexpensive low current DC-DC trickle charger for my application. The Trik-L-Start trickle charger would have been ideal, but they are no longer sold, necessitating the DIY approach. With the addition of a battery protection module to the circuit, it will mimic the Trik-L-Start trickle charger and can be adjusted to start/stop charging depending on the source voltage.

Sunday, January 1, 2023

DIY Foldable Insulated Tent Bed for Mom's Fur Baby

Winter camping is here, and our pet dog (Nala) needs something to keep her warm during the cold nights spent in the RV. I decided to make her a bed that would fit between the two front seats. Because the cab gets quite cold at night, the bed can be moved into the galley and behind the curtain for extra warmth. A foldable insulated tent cover over the bed provides additional cold protection.

Sunday, December 25, 2022

Sprinter Vital System Monitoring using ScanGauge III

My UltraGauge monitor lost many of its gauges after the MB Approved Emission Modification. I did like the UltraGauge when it was working, but UltraGauge support is almost nonexistent and there is no current firmware update to fix the issue, so...I jumped over to Linear Logic and got their new ScanGauge III.

NOTE: My 2011 Roadtrek Agile was built on a 2010 Freightliner Sprinter chassis with an OM642 3.0 L 6-cylinder engine. AEM (Approved Emission Modification) was performed at the MB dealership, and a new updated ECU was installed.

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Macerator Emergency Extension Hose


I always keep a macerator hose extension on hand in case the sewer connection required extra reach. Although it is uncommon for campgrounds to place sewer connections far back from camp sites, I have seen it on occasions.

The Thetford Sanicon 21-ft Retracting Hose is ideal for extending the reach of your macerator hose; it is also available in a shorter 10-foot version. The 28-footer costs around $81 and the 10-footer costs around $38. I made my own extension using a Flexible PVC flat hose with a Polyester sleeve, similar to a fireman's hose, for a more compact and less expensive alternative.

Tuesday, September 6, 2022

Simple Fix: Sliding Door Closing When Parked on an Incline

The sliding door in an Agile only opens halfway, latching onto a clevis pin in the middle of the lower sliding door tract. Over time, the latching mechanism wears out and becomes easily unlatched, causing the door to slam shut; this usually occurs when the van is parked on an incline with the nose down. When the sliding door is latched open, a small door movement can cause the clevis pin to wiggle/rotate, resulting in accidental unlatching.