Monday, December 11, 2017

DIY Portable Power Station/ Jump Starter and Battery Charger with Bluetooth Stereo Speakers


My old 750-watt Trip Lite Inverter/Charger is gathering dust in the garage so I made it useful by building a portable wheeled power station. Most of the parts used were just lying around the garage unused and taking up space, the Walmart 12-volt battery was purchased last year to temporarily replace the original RT coach batteries that got fried during our summer road trip.

Obviously this is not for RV use, but can be a great power source while picnicking at the park, at the beach, etc. or just something to brag around, lol. It can also be used as a jump starter or a car battery charger. It has built-in 200-watts Bluetooth wireless stereo speakers, good for entertaining or annoying crowds at the park.


Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Building the Ultimate Hitch Bike Rack that Does Not Interfere with the Rear Spare Tire


Adding a hitch mounted bike carrier has been a problem on RT’s that are equipped with rear mounted spare tire carrier. I’ve seen many attempts by RT owners to negate this problem, from using hitch extenders to experimenting with different available bike carriers on the market. Clearing the spare tire is only half of the problem. Opening the Sprinter rear doors and lowering the spare tire with a hitch bike carrier mounted either with bikes loaded or unloaded is another huge problem not to mention the added length to the vehicle with the addition of hitch extender.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Installing Coach Battery Powered 12-volt DC sockets on Sprinter Dashboard

My 2011 Agile has two factory 12-volt DC sockets located in the cab, one by the pull-out cup holder (only powered when engine is running) and one just below the pull-out cup holder which is always powered. The MB factory sockets are wired into the chassis battery.

I installed 2 additional 12-volt DC sockets for charging our phones/ tablets/ cameras/etc. I wired the new sockets from the coach battery so as not to put extra drain into the starting battery when we are out dry camping. The additional sockets were installed on the outer sides of the dashboard top vents thus minimizing charging cables clutter hanging from the dashboard and interfering while driving. I opted for 12-volt DC sockets and use plug-in USB car chargers in lieu of surface- mount USB charger sockets for more universal mobile charging approach. Also replacing a malfunctioning USB charger with our setup would be much easier, not so with the surface- mount USB charger sockets.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Replacing That Smelly Toilet Bowl in a Roadtrek Agile

 
My 2011 Agile came with a Thetford Aqua Magic V toilet which I've replaced twice with same model due to holding tank fume leakage around the flush valve assembly. The last replacement lasted about 2 years of use then it started to leak fumes again! 
 
Thetford Aqua Magic V design is not very well thought-out IMHO; the space between the toilet bowl and the toilet outer casing/base is hollow and open to the black tank. Waste splatter can get stuck in that hollow space during flushing, very unhygienic. The flusher arm seal is also unreliable, it is basically sealed with packed grease. When grease seal starts to dry up, it starts to leak fumes from the holding tank especially when there is negative pressure inside the van like driving with windows open.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Building a Wooden Shower Mat for the Agile

 
A fellow sprinter forum member made a really nice teak shower mat on his Agile and that got me interested in making one for my RV. Currently, there are no commercially available wooden shower mats for the Agile so you have to make your own if you really wanted one.