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Old 05-11-2015, 07:54 PM   #1
Kes
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THOR #1983
Axis/Vegas TV while traveling question

Hello all, I'm considering purchasing an Axis and have a question about the TV while traveling down the road. Does the TV in the Axis provide an inverter and switch in order to avoid having to run the generator while moving? If not, has anyone completed any modifications that would allow this?

I'll be traveling with kids that will want to watch a movie while traveling but I'm not crazy about using the genny to do so. Thoughts?

Thanks

Ken
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:39 PM   #2
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Kes,
I'm in the same boat (well...RV ) as you, with 2 kids. I asked many people including the dealer and was told, for the money, running the genny is the best option. The fuel usage will be very minimal, compared to the cost associated with purchasing an inverter and concealing the wires.

I wasn't a big fan, but, as often as we use the RV (weekends and maybe a couple of long vacations a year) it seems to be the best option.


Matt
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:51 PM   #3
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The Axis does not come an inverter, and I don't believe there is a factory option to add one. I've been noodling on adding one to our 24.1, but haven't made any decisions yet.

The genset isn't a bad option. It will burn .5 to 1 gallons per hour, depending on what else you might be powering.

Regards,

Randy
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:44 PM   #4
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I'm not sure how often you need the TV while in route. If you don't want to permanenetly mount an actual RV inverter system with additional batteries/switches/control panels/wiring, you can do what I did.

My Hurricane did not originally come with an inverter, but my kids wanted to watch DVD's on the big television in transit. So, I just plugged the television and DVD player into a PowerLine PowerCup 200/400 Watt Mobile Inverter, (purchased at a Tuesday Morning store for $5.00). It worked perfectly fine from Florida to California!

With a 10 foot 12v extension cord from Radio Shack, it was plugged into the 12v accessory jack under the passenger side dashboard fold-over desktop. Easy!

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Old 05-11-2015, 10:47 PM   #5
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I had Camping World install a Xantrex PROwatt 1000 watt inverter. The inverter was wired into circuit 3A which are the General Recepts on the wiring diagram. This gives me the ability to run the TVís, the refrigerator and several outlets. The alternator keeps the batteries charged while driving.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:10 PM   #6
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When I had my unit at a local Cumins/Onan shop to get the generator's fuel pump replaced (they shipped a few out with bad fuel pumps) the tech there said:
Quote:
If the engine is running the generator should be running
He explained that most people avoid running the generator at all costs and then the carburetor gets all gummed up causing all kinds of issues. You're better off running it than not in their eyes (sure I suppose thats more business for them as well since you'll need more oil changes and maintenance but I'm sure it isn't much). In addition, if its really hot out, running the genny lets you run the rooftop A/C which cools the place down much better than the auto A/C.

In my case my son is always using his PlayStation as we go down the road so we just run the generator. I do tell him that we're only going to run it on the highway as it is a bit noisy on the outside and I don't want to drive around residential areas with the genny making a racket.

A warning about running a game console or DVD player while going down the road: That cabinet you have to put them in is all enclosed with no thought for cooling. For our PlayStation it will typically overheat in a couple of hours in there (can't drive down the road with the cabinet open unless you want all the stuff on the floor). I've thought about a few mods to fix this but haven't tackled it yet... Hmm A quick fix would be some child locks that let the doors hang open about 1/2" or so allowing ventilation but not letting them open any further--I'd want those to be removable though so when you're parked you don't always have to reach in to disengage the locks.
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Old 05-12-2015, 12:58 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the info guys, much appreciated.
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:25 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamieGeek View Post
When I had my unit at a local Cumins/Onan shop to get the generator's fuel pump replaced (they shipped a few out with bad fuel pumps) the tech there said:

He explained that most people avoid running the generator at all costs and then the carburetor gets all gummed up causing all kinds of issues. You're better off running it than not in their eyes (sure I suppose thats more business for them as well since you'll need more oil changes and maintenance but I'm sure it isn't much). In addition, if its really hot out, running the genny lets you run the rooftop A/C which cools the place down much better than the auto A/C.

In my case my son is always using his PlayStation as we go down the road so we just run the generator. I do tell him that we're only going to run it on the highway as it is a bit noisy on the outside and I don't want to drive around residential areas with the genny making a racket.

A warning about running a game console or DVD player while going down the road: That cabinet you have to put them in is all enclosed with no thought for cooling. For our PlayStation it will typically overheat in a couple of hours in there (can't drive down the road with the cabinet open unless you want all the stuff on the floor). I've thought about a few mods to fix this but haven't tackled it yet... Hmm A quick fix would be some child locks that let the doors hang open about 1/2" or so allowing ventilation but not letting them open any further--I'd want those to be removable though so when you're parked you don't always have to reach in to disengage the locks.
Jamie,

Have you thought about drilling a couple of holes in the cabinet and covering them with speaker mesh and then installing a small 12 volt fan over the holes to extract the heat? This should provide cooling similar to that on a computer case.
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dstankov
Jamie,

Have you thought about drilling a couple of holes in the cabinet and covering them with speaker mesh and then installing a small 12 volt fan over the holes to extract the heat? This should provide cooling similar to that on a computer case.
Yes, unfortunately my carpentry skills leave a lot to be desired and thus I don't want to do too much with the doors.

A few of the thoughts I've had:
  • Cut/route a notch at the top of the doors about 1/8" deep. You couldn't see that and it would leave a spot for hot air to escape
  • Cut a hole in the ceiling inside the cabinet and join that up with the A/C ducts to provide a source of cold air from the rooftop A/C unit
  • A hole near the rear of the cabinet exiting near the TV (thus not a hole through the door but in the side) with a fan
  • The aforementioned child lock solution
The big problem with any woodwork solution, at least for me, is that I wouldn't want to leave any exposed wood. I'd want to at least stain it to match and I really suck at staining! LOL So any mesh solution would have to look really nice. Oh yeah and the project would have to meet the approval of the wife's gazing eye as well...

For reference (and those of you without an Axis/Vegas 24.1) the cabinet is the top left one above the sink in this pic:

There is a shelf at the very top of this cabinet for something to connect to the TV (and there is an included HDMI cable which is wired to HDMI input 1 on the TV immediately to the left there--you can just see it with the yellow tag on it). This is also where the cable hookup is along with the on/off for the amplifier--its a pain to get to all the way in the back at the top.
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:46 AM   #10
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My front TV (Visio brand) installed by Thor runs on 12VDC. I am certain that this differs depending on model year, but make sure the TV isn't already on 12V.

If so, the TV will be powered by the coach batteries, which may be kept charged by the alternator (most coaches do, but some do not).
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Old 05-12-2015, 01:50 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FW28z
My front TV (Visio brand) installed by Thor runs on 12VDC. I am certain that this differs depending on model year, but make sure the TV isn't already on 12V.
All the TVs in Axis/Vegas units are 120V since the generator is a standard feature. In addition, the TVs aren't nearly as nice as a Vizio TV (all of our house TVs are Vizio).

Er at least in our unit and the ones I've seen at dealers/shows/etc. (120V TVs)
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:22 AM   #12
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Gennys are standard on Class C's too. For some reason Thor put in 12V TVs in some. Most likely differs depending on the year of the coach and model of TV used.

Maybe they did it for boondocking so you don't have to run a genny?

On mine, the TV originally came with a 120VAC adapter which has a 12V output that goes to the TV. They simply threw out the 120VAC adapter and wired the TV directly to 12V.

I wanted to replace the TV, but keep the 12V operation (because they did not wire 120VAC to the area). I found nost of the TVs that can be modified (that have adapters) are 120VAC to 17VDC for some strange reason. I did find a couple of 12VDC TVs but they were smaller screens.

Of course, not all TV's have a AC/DC adapter, but have 120VAC wired directly into the back of the TV. But there are a lot of them that have AC/DC adapters, especially the smaller sized ones.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:31 AM   #13
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I wonder if they just happened to get a bunch of bulk TVs that used 12V. Probably a coincidence that they used 12V and someone noticed it.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:34 AM   #14
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Well from the Thor point of view, it's probably cheaper to run 12VDC to the TV than 120VAC.

I think lowest cost is the chief motivator.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:39 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by FW28z View Post
Gennys are standard on Class C's too. For some reason Thor put in 12V TVs in some. Most likely differs depending on the year of the coach and model of TV used.

Maybe they did it for boondocking so you don't have to run a genny?

On mine, the TV originally came with a 120VAC adapter which has a 12V output that goes to the TV. They simply threw out the 120VAC adapter and wired the TV directly to 12V.

I wanted to replace the TV, but keep the 12V operation (because they did not wire 120VAC to the area). I found nost of the TVs that can be modified (that have adapters) are 120VAC to 17VDC for some strange reason. I did find a couple of 12VDC TVs but they were smaller screens.

Of course, not all TV's have a AC/DC adapter, but have 120VAC wired directly into the back of the TV. But there are a lot of them that have AC/DC adapters, especially the smaller sized ones.
All of the televisions (2 inside and 1 outside) in my prior class C were Jensen 12V televisions. I also has the generator as standard equipment. In all actuality the 12V televisions were a pain because the 12V socket type plug would work loose while running down the road.
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Old 05-12-2015, 02:55 AM   #16
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In the case of my Visio, the TV is not specifically designed for 12VDC, Thor simply lopped off the connecter from the AC/DC converter and wired the connector directly into a 12VDC source.
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Old 05-12-2015, 04:46 PM   #17
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Gennys are standard on Class C's too. For some reason Thor put in 12V TVs in some. Most likely differs depending on the year of the coach and model of TV used.....
Very likely strictly by coincidence. Up until about four year ago, almost all LCD flat-screen televisions under 32" required an external 120V AC/12V DC power supply, (the ubiquitous "power brick").

As LCD televisions quickly became commodity items, (and manufacturing was streamlined, leaned out, and made faster), the power adapter was incorporated into the smaller televisions, just like they always had been for larger sets.
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Old 06-01-2015, 04:52 PM   #18
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We added a inverter and solar panels to ours Axis for the kiddos to watch tv or if were dry camping. We went with the one Camping World parts guy suggested. Took a month for Camping World to get it installed seemed to be problems with the missing pieces on the units and service guys not knowing how to install it. Finally we got a service guy who did it right and in the end he said to us..."I dont know why they sell this one its total junk." Seems to be working ok for us for now though.

In the end it was about $3500 to do it all....If I had to do it over again I wouldn't I would just run generator. We end up running it most of the time anyway for A/C since we camp mostly in summer.

Heres the one we added if your interested
Inverters - Products - Nature Power
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Old 12-17-2015, 03:51 AM   #19
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May I ask where the Inverter is mounted and approximately the cost of the Inverter and the cost of the installation? Also is it a pure sine inverter? Thanks Les Hunter
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Old 12-17-2015, 04:20 PM   #20
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May I ask where the Inverter is mounted and approximately the cost of the Inverter and the cost of the installation? Also is it a pure sine inverter? Thanks Les Hunter
The Xantrex PROwatt 1000 watt is a pure sine wave inverter. They installed the inverter in the outside bin behind the step. The on/off switch was installed next to the light switch by the door. I think the cost for everything was just over $700.00 including the transfer relay which is required to prevent power from back feeding into the inverter.
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