That grab handle on the ceiling is a great idea.
What a sanitary installation. What are the hard lines and where did you get them? Sure beats the rubber heater hose I have running around under the van.One of the first things I did was test the Espar D5 heater by placing the ambient temperature probe into a bag of ice water. This allowed me to determine the hot water flow path from engine to D5 and thru the H88 rear heater loop.
What a sanitary installation. What are the hard lines and where did you get them? Sure beats the rubber heater hose I have running around under the van.
BTW - I remember when my undercarriage was that uncluttered. You can actually still see the bottom of the floor.
Great build and workmanship.
So this amounts to ~900aH? Can you comment on battery sizing and operating your stereo system (+ sub/amp)? Is the head unit powered off the house batteries or starter?BATTERY AND AUXILIARY ALTERNATOR
For batteries I am using four Fullriver AGM 6 volt 224 amp GC2s. I went with AGM batteries primarily for cold weather performance and cost with the idea of converting to lithium in the future as prices drop.
I custom fabricated two identical undercarriage mounts just forward of the rear wheels on my 170 4x4 van. The two removable battery cages each bolt to two 2” angle brackets secured to the van crossmembers. Each bracket secured by three 3/8” rivnuts.
To install the batteries I used a Harbor Freight aluminum motorcycle jack that dropped down to approximately 3” in height, just enough to slide each pair of batteries under the van without jacking up the van.
I also installed the Nations 280 amp auxiliary alternator and a Balmar 614 voltage regulator. The regulator is programmed for AGM batteries. I ordered my van with the N62 alternator mount which made the install very simple. Basically one bolt to mount the alternator. The new longer belt was also a quick install. Once I confirmed that the new belt was the proper length I cut the shorter OEM belt with a razor knife. The original belt could not be easily removed without some disassembly of the fan. I did have to unplug a couple connections to the fan before slipping the new belt over the fan. A large screwdriver was all that was needed to slip the new belt over the tensioner that was included with the N62 package.
I mounted the Balmar 614 on the firewall sharing some bolts that hold the cabin air intake filter. The Balmar 614 comes with a wiring harness that connects directly to the alternator. One additional connection is required for the ignition source. I routed a wire to an ignition source located in the driver’s seat base, entering thru the firewall opening and then up the “A” pillar and down the “B” pillar. My headliner and associated plastic pillar covers were already removed for the conversion.
I ran a pair of 2/0 copper welding cables wrapped in plastic loom from the alternator to the passenger side batteries. I used the same size 2/0 cable between the two pairs of batteries and also from the driver’s side batteries to a 400 amp slow fuse mounted just below floor level. The fuse feeds a 3000 watt Go Power pure sine wave inverter mounted directly above the floor. It also feeds the DC breaker panel.
I created a ground connection to the frame adjacent to my 400 amp fuse. I then installed my Victron battery monitor shunt directly above the floor.
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So this amounts to ~900aH? Can you comment on battery sizing and operating your stereo system (+ sub/amp)? Is the head unit powered off the house batteries or starter?
Awesome build - thanks for the writeup.
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30 amps a day? My Isotherm 85 probably uses that amount. Am I missing something? Your system must have some insane efficiency tweaks.Yes, 448 ah at 12 volts. My Pioneer head unit is currently powered off my starter battery. May add an option to power it off the house battery in the future but in no rush to open up the dash and the maze of wires behind it. My subwoofer amp is powered by the auxiliary battery but my long range plan is to eliminate the auxiliary battery and switch the AGM batteries to lithium which will increase my usable ah capacity even without the auxiliary battery. The current AGM setup is more than sufficient to operate 7+ days without any solar or other charging source.
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30 amps a day? My Isotherm 85 probably uses that amount. Am I missing something? Your system must have some insane efficiency tweaks.
I also looked at using the Harbor Freight ramps for my bed platform. Took a tape measure to the store for accurate measurements, but decided to go the custom route.Great build! I used some aluminum ATV ramps ($150) which are temporally installed with wood braces, once I get the hight I want dialed-in I'll add steel or aluminum support rails.