Go Back   Thor Forums > Thor Tech Forums > Modifications and Updates
Click Here to Login
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 05-01-2019, 03:58 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Hurricane 34J
State: Florida
Posts: 149
THOR #14384
Installing AGS (Auto Gen Start) in 34J

Part 1 of 3

So my Windsport 34j, being an ex-El Monte rental RV did not come with an automatic generator start.

After thinking about it and looking at locations to install it for a long time, I finally decided to put it right above the main control panel. This would make it easy for me to wire it, as the gen start/stop and hour meters wires, were right there for easy tapping.

The first step was wiring. I wanted to use spade connectors and just make jumpers, however the wiring in the RV uses some sort of spade that is not like the automotive stuff. So in the end I used quick splices. To power the unit I used the water pump wire. I need to revisit this as I may have tapped into the wrong side (water pump has to be on for the AGS to power on) but for now I'm good with it. To make wiring easy I bought 25' of stranded hookup wire (18 awg) in 6 colors.

After the wiring was done I tested the panel to make sure it worked, and (after 10 minutes of head scratching and looking at my diagram) I realized I had managed to hook everything up backwards. Reverse it all and presto, starto.

So the next step was making the panel mount. I spent a lot of time trying to figure out what to do, saw many great ideas on companies that will let you draw any panel you want and the cut it out of aluminum or whatever. If you go this route, you might want to try Front Panel Express: Front Panel Design Software and CAD Conversion Service: Home, they have pretty cool software. I didn't feel like spending the time and the money to do it via that method so I decided to make my add on panel of out 3/16 ABS plastic, often used in the custom car stereo market. I got it on ebay, 2 12"x24" sheets (lots of room for mistakes) for 28.55 shipped



The next step was cutting it. I borrowed my step dads router and made a router table out of a scrap chunk of wood, and mounted it with clamps to a couple of work tables in my garage. Using a piece of straight stock left over from another project and two clamps I made a workable tool. The router did not have adjustable speed, that would have made it easier as I got a lot of melting, but running the chunk back and forth several times ended up with a pretty clean cut. The router wasn't needed for the ouside edge cuts, you can just score abs and break it, however I used it anyway.

Top view.



Side view.
__________________

__________________
apr67 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2019, 05:40 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Hurricane 34J
State: Florida
Posts: 149
THOR #14384
Part 2 of 2.
After cutting the panel out, basically the same width as the factory panel, my next cuts were for the AGS brainbox (usually installed someplace where it is impossible to work with) and the remote switch with temperature sensor. I made a paper template of the opening I needed to cut with T square, taped the template to the ABS, marked the ABS with white crayon and drilled a hole near the edge and adjusted my fence and 'let her rip'.

Template:


While I was working on this, I took all the mounting screws I was going to use, stuck them in a scrap of cardboard and painted them back with Rustoleum Hammered paint. It doesn't match the factory screws perfectly, but its good enough for this task.



I predrilled all the screw holes, for the brain box I used my template. For the hole in each corner I made a quick template out of scrap cardboard right angle from a junkmail postcard, marked 3/4 of an inch on each side, drew a straight line with my square and marked the hole. I had to counter sink the screws for the brain box, luckily a bit was in the router box for that.



After cutting I needed to figure out how to keep the brain box offset so it sat flush. The brain box mounting holes are on the back of case, not the front, so I made 2 offsets out of scrap ABS (I think an 1" wide) and used MEK to glue them to the back of the ABS right by the openings. When gluing ABS, make sure the parts have smooth flat edges (for my install I used the factory edge as my cuts were not sufficiently flat and smooth). These offsets also stiffen the ABS, although its not really needed.





Part 3.
I marked the hole for the switch and the screws for it manually, centering as well as I could. The hole was offset to one side for the electronics on the back switch to protrude through, but all in all it didn't matter because the supplied face plate provided enough coverage that perfection wasn't required.

The point of no return. I now had to cut a hole in my RV wall to mount this. I drilled holes in all for corners and used a rotozip to cut the material out. I originally tried a razor knife, but I didn't have a straight edge and feared I was going to cut my own wrist off. I used pencil to mark the outline and did my best to follow it. I did give myself quite a bit of room in the template I made for the hole, so a few bobbles wouldn't be seen. Yeah, it is about as straight as a moth flies.



Then I saw the vent pipe. Dang. First I had to check that I didn't drill or rotozip it, nope it was good. Then I test fit (I designed this with the brain box on the top and the remote switch on the bottom) it and it didn't fit. However if I reversed everything it was fine, so that is what I did.

Here is the final product.





The cable that comes with the kit for the remote is 25' long. I bought a new RJ 12 6p6c connector and cut the cable and shortened it to 1'. If you don't have the tools for that you can buy RJ12 6p6c cables (flat not flipped) for about $4 online.

I am 100% satisfied with the end result, and I am quite happy I know how to use ABS to make panel mounts now. I am going to make a custom mount for over the circuit breaker box to house my inverter control panel and my surge protector control panels.
__________________

__________________
apr67 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2019, 06:06 PM   #3
Senior Member
 
Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Hurricane 34J
State: Florida
Posts: 149
THOR #14384
Part 3.

Just a picture that should have been in part 1 of the testing with the wires from the other control panel.

__________________
apr67 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Thor Industries or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.




All times are GMT. The time now is 02:12 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0 PL2