Black Series HQ Tips, Tricks, and Learning.....

hopp150

New member
OK, maybe someone can help me with a problem I'm having. On the solar controller f
or some reason it says 24V in the bottom left corner. Anyone else have one that looks like this? Is it possible this is all hooked up wrong? With the main power on, the amp draw on the main electrical panel is 8.6 amps and voltage is at 12.8. This is during the day, Ill check again in the AM before the panels have got any sun.

Update...unplugged solar controller, plugged it back and it appears to be operating normal.
 

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sobiloff

New member
@hopp150 Yeah, that controller's not my favorite piece of kit. :) It's a PWM controller that produces a lot of RFI, and it isn't adjustable for different battery chemistries, but it generally works OK. Since I'm upgrading to LiFePO4 I'm replacing it with the DIY Solar 4 U "Sól" charge controller: MPPT (so 20%+ more power into the battery from the panels), LiFePO4 compatible, and virtually no RFI. Of course it's about 5X the cost of the CM30D…
 

sobiloff

New member
No, I was referring to speed tape. It's looks like silver duct tape but playable aluminum on one side and very sticky on the other. Aircraft use this as temporary fixes for engine cowlings, gaps, etc. so it can handle extreme temps, speeds, and UV. Very durable, just expense; prices vary.
Now I'm frequently accused of being very "top shelf" in my tastes, but even I choke a bit on a $400 roll of tape! As much as I love my HQ15 it ain't a space shuttle. I'm thinking some EternaBond might be more reasonable?

 

sobiloff

New member
BTW this is the right Anderson connector, in case you want to make your own cable and connect it to the trailer:

Don't forget that you'll need a crimper, too:

 

JoelFT

New member
Now I'm frequently accused of being very "top shelf" in my tastes, but even I choke a bit on a $400 roll of tape! As much as I love my HQ15 it ain't a space shuttle. I'm thinking some EternaBond might be more reasonable?

FYI, speed tape will last longer than the camper. I’ve flown a jet with it being used to hold my windshield on!
 

HQ15fan

Member
Ok, here's the next mod. I was looking for a place to hang four Maxtrax boards. With my HQ15 i dont have the room on the back, as the two jerry can holders and high jack lift are in the way. But turns out, they fit perfectly on the side. Take the slider off, weld a simple frame, and voila. I used four 4 inch long 1/2 thick bolts that the Maxtrax hangs on. Secure the Maxtrack with a washer, lock washer, and a wingnut. That won't rattle loose (I hope).20191117_153846 (Large).jpg20191117_163229 (Large).jpg20191117_132904 (Large).jpg20191117_132909 (Large).jpg20191117_132912 (Large).jpg20191117_163152 (Large).jpg20191117_163221 (Large).jpg
 

HQ15fan

Member
The thermostat is not in the best place. It is right above the heater, and that results in either you having to set the thermostat to its highest setting, and that might not be enough, and/or the thermostat frequently cycling the heater on and off. Which is not efficient in actually heating up the trailer. So I did two things. I upgraded to a simple digital thermostat. A Honeywell TH1100DV ($32 on Amazon) and move it away from the heater. See pictures. The result is so much better!

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sobiloff

New member
The thermostat is not in the best place. It is right above the heater, and that results in either you having to set the thermostat to its highest setting, and that might not be enough, and/or the thermostat frequently cycling the heater on and off. Which is not efficient in actually heating up the trailer. So I did two things. I upgraded to a simple digital thermostat. A Honeywell TH1100DV ($32 on Amazon) and move it away from the heater. See pictures. The result is so much better!

View attachment 553779View attachment 553780View attachment 553781
Nice—that's on my to-do list as well. I've got to finish re-wiring the battery system first, though, and at my pace I might not need the heater by the time I'm done. :)

Looks like you've done some other alterations in the cabinet above as well. It's fun to see what other folks come up with!
 

HQ15fan

Member
Looks like you've done some other alterations in the cabinet above as well. It's fun to see what other folks come up with!
Yup, Michael at RVs of America did those. The bottom display is for the MPPT solar controller, shows me all kinds of stats of the panels and the controller. Then the four switches above it are to turn the tank heater pads on or off. One for each tank.

Agreed, it is fun to see what everyone comes up with! Just met a HQ19 owner who plumbed in a hot water re-circulation system. That is a really cool idea. So you don't waste any hot water when you open the faucet and need to wait for the cold water to get purged out of the line first. Plus, if the hot water return lines under the trailer are right next to the cold line, it will help keeping them from freezing as well.
 

Bikepals

Member
I recently purchased a 2020 HQ15 in Mesa Az. They made me a better deal than RVoA. They are holding it until January and I will bring it home to do some mods even before we take it out for the first time. The controller will be removed and replaced with a Victron 100/50. Picked the higher amps because I will eventually add solar to the roof. I have external 260 watt panels to place on the ground. I already have an MPPT (EPEVER) controller for the external panels and have wired this controller with a 50 amp Anderson connector to plug it into the the Anderson plug on the trailer. The 2020 model has 4 AGM batteries ( I will replace these with Battle Born batteries when they go bad).

I will be taking out the toilet and replacing it with a Natures Head composting toilet. This will do 2 things. I can stay off grid longer (no need to dump a black tank) and removing the connection from the existing toilet to the black tank will then let the support leg to go all the way up, it now hangs down because it hits the toilet flange. I also have a cap that will go on the dump outlet for the black/greay tanks that accepts a hose and will let me connect the 2 tanks for 52 gallons of grey water. I got a hose faucet that will screw into the cap which will allow me to attach a hose or just turn it on to dump the grey water.

I will also be replacing the fan in the shower with a FanTastic fan with remote. This will help to cool down the trailer in the summer heat.

I already had them put in a 12v outlet in the front compartment for my Dometic CF35 chest refrigerator. Got this idea after watching the video on RVOA. I believe it was HQ15 FAN who was in the video. Thanks for the idea.
 
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HQ15fan

Member
My Victron controller is rated up to 100 volts meaning I could connect up to 8 12 volt panels together In series.
Hi Bikepals,

I don't believe that is quite correct. The maximum number of panels a solar controller can handle needs to be computed by looking at its Voc, or maximum voltage out of the panel when there's no load connected to the panel. That is typically around 20V (but can be much higher depending on the panel). So with a Voc of around 20V, you can safely only handle 4 panels with your Victron in series (in parallel more, as long as you don't go over the maximum power of the Victron).
 

adventr

Adventurer
My HQ12 is listed for sale on here and has a list of mods and some pics for those interested. At one point I had all that info in the other thread, but seems it was deleted?


 

Bikepals

Member
Hi Bikepals,

I don't believe that is quite correct. The maximum number of panels a solar controller can handle needs to be computed by looking at its Voc, or maximum voltage out of the panel when there's no load connected to the panel. That is typically around 20V (but can be much higher depending on the panel). So with a Voc of around 20V, you can safely only handle 4 panels with your Victron in series (in parallel more, as long as you don't go over the maximum power of the Victron).
Thanks. You are correct.
 

Bikepals

Member
Understood! It is way scary to see the trailer lean over left or right in the rear view mirror, but I keep telling myself its center of gravity is quite low, so it is OK :) BTW Getting KO2s was a good idea, much better tires than the stock ones.
Did you do the same tire size with the KO2 Or go larger?
 
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