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Old 01-07-2014, 01:29 PM   #1
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Xantrex SCP Wiring

We had our original Xantrex Freedom 450 Combi unit fail & almost catch fire last week. I thought that replacing it with the new Freedom SW2012 Full Sine Wave model would be the best option for compatibility. Wrong! It requires a new control panel (SCP) & new cabling. Didn't do adequate research on this one.

So, I ordered the new SCP which is coming today and just realized that the small RJ11 cable won't work. I need any Alpine Coach owners with experience on this wiring to help please.

The bundle of cables exiting the cabinet next to the residential refrigerator includes the RJ11 cable. I'm not finding access to these cables anywhere below the refrigerator. It looks like a bundle of cables routes behind the box where the vacuum unit, coax cables, and an AC outlet are located in the basement compartment right below the refrigerator. Does removing this box provide some vertical access to the cabinet above? Do I have to remove the refrigerator?

I really appreciate whatever experience you might have with the wiring access. Or, if anyone has a better alternative for mounting the new SCP inside the coach.
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Old 01-07-2014, 02:05 PM   #2
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Yup--new xantrex inverters use a comm buss system so you need a new cable [dont know if its just different ends/connectors or the number of wires in the cable or both]. Old cable on our 03 mid-door ran across the top of the door behind the resid fridge before going thru the floor and into the basement with a host of of other wires. I have become a pro at removing/rolling out the fridge over the years so it was just one more reason to do it again. There is an access port under the fridge in the floor into the basement [like the sewer hose door] but it might be hard to drop the new line thru it......good luck
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Old 01-07-2014, 04:16 PM   #3
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just install new ends on your old cable as long as it has the wires you need and in most system only 2 of the wires are used

like 99% of most RJ45 cables for computers only use 4 out of the 8 wire so they can fix it latter and move a wire if need be or whey do whats called power over network to power a item down the line

most xantrex inverter i know use only 2 out of the 4 wires in the smaller phone line wires its some thing to look in to so you can stay with your unit

go to a nice RV shop as when doing upgrades this is what they do to save time and money over installing a new wire
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Old 01-07-2014, 07:39 PM   #4
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An 08 Alpiner swapped to a Magnum inverter, needed to wire it for the new Magnum panel. Did micro-surgery on the ends of the RJ11 cord to separate wires & re-ended the 4-wire cable like Terry is suggesting. Saved megaton of work over spelunking his way around the wad of wiring.
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Old 01-07-2014, 09:28 PM   #5
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You guys had my old heart a fluttering. However, the newer Xanbus specification calls for a CAT5 cable using the T568A standard with all 8 - pins assigned. Back to the drawing board ... or in this case rewiring.

It's too cold here in the FL panhandle still tomorrow so won't be able to dig into the possible rewiring until Thursday. I'll start with removing that box arrangement I mentioned previously to gain vertical access to the inside cabinet. Removing the refrigerator would be my absolute last resort.

I'll report back (possibly with pictures) one way or the other. Please keep any information or suggestions coming.
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:57 AM   #6
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The old Freedom 450 used 4 wires. The new Xantrex uses 8 wires.
The Magnum uses 4 wires for the inverter control and another 4 if you add the auto gen start control.
I changed from the Xantrex RS2000 (8 wires) to a Magnum. Used 4 of the 8 wires to the new controller with RJ 11 connecter.
Did not install new auto gen start control but could by using the other 4 wires and another RJ 11 connector.
If you have 4 wires (must be 2 twisted pairs) you could switch to a Magnum without gen start.
If you go with the new Xantrex you need a new cable for the control unless you do what Terry suggested.
It may be possible to use less wires than the manufacture suggest.
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Old 01-08-2014, 07:47 AM   #7
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Silly question, maybe... isn't there a wireless version?
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Old 01-08-2014, 08:33 AM   #8
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The Xantrex Xanbus system identifies the cable as being a typical Ethernet/Data/Network type cable with all 8 - pins assigned. However, their documentation provides a WARNING that the Xanbus is NOT Ethernet and can not be connected in a computer type network. I would try re-terminating the existing cable if someone has actual experience to prove that it can be done & provide a working pin configuration.

They do not provide a wireless solution although that would be a great idea.

I do appreciate all of the thoughts & ideas!
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Old 01-08-2014, 10:45 AM   #9
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We had the same experience. When our Freedom inverter failed, I almost ordered a new Freedom inverter. I was fortunate to discover before ordering that the new Freedom inverters are not direct replacements for old Freedom inverters.

The Magnum series of inverters are direct replacement for the old Freedom inverters. The inverter uses the same old 4 wire phone cord. So I didn't have to fish a new cord through the coach. I didn't have to buy anything except the inverter. It was basically plug and play. Our new Magnum inverter works fine.

Any chance you can return the new Freedom inverter?

Jim
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Old 01-08-2014, 04:59 PM   #10
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No can do ...
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Old 01-08-2014, 05:19 PM   #11
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Has any of you Alpine Coach owners run cables from the heated compartment where the fresh water tank resides to the rear area of the coach? I'm looking for an available path to run a cable back to the inverter. Everything looks tight &/or sealed in some manner. Thanks!
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Old 01-09-2014, 06:15 PM   #12
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Got it!

The original SCP cable (RJ11) was included in a big bundle of cables feeding the cabinet that contains the tank monitors, gen start, and original SCP. The cable bundle did route right behind the box with the coax & AC outlet and where the vacuum unit is mounted right below it. Temporarily removed the box and vacuum unit. There is a hole going through the floor and comes up right behind the middle rear of the frig. The hole was not suitable to "fish" up the wall. However, there is an access hatch as Old Scout had mentioned and it's located much closer to the rear corner of the frig where the cables drop down.

We fished a steel line up the wall through the hatch and used a coat hanger to pull it forward and out the upper left corner of the frig. Used the coat hanger to fish a pull cord from the cabinet hole to the same upper corner of the frig. Taped a new Cat5e pre-terminated cable to the pull cord and pulled it down thru the access hatch with no problem. It was actually more difficult to then fish & pull the cable from the access hatch to that small hole where the bundle is routed behind the box.

It was a PITA but avoided pulling out the frig. It only took us about 2 - hours.

More importantly, my new Xantrex SW2012 Inverter/Charger is monitored & controlled just like the old 458 Combi. I love it when a plan comes together!
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Old 01-09-2014, 07:59 PM   #13
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Nicely done! I hope there's a fix out there for Silverleaf people that need a plug and play upgrade path.
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Old 01-10-2014, 02:24 PM   #14
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Interesting Tidbits

Ever since we added the new SCP the SW2012 quits charging with no faults & no alarms. I happened to have checked it yesterday evening and found the battery level sitting at 12.4V even though it displayed "Bulk" charge. I but an external battery charger on the batteries and was able to work through the system settings until it suddenly seemed to reset and started charging. However, this morning I found it in a similar state with the voltage reading 12.7 volts and decreasiing slowly.

Xantrex wanted me to literally remove AC & DC sources for 2 - hours to "drain out" any corrupt settings. We had to leave with the battery charger hooked up for 2 - hours. The SCP was reading 13.5V and in "Float" mode when we returned. Called Xantrex and suggested that something still seems to be incorrect in the settings since an external battery charger or increased battery votage seems to trigger the charging.

Learned 2 - things about the SW2012:

1. The SCP manual actually focuses on the SW3012 model which doesn't quite cut it when using the SW2012. You have to display "Inverter" on the "Basic Settings" menu then press the "Enter", "Down Arrow", & "Up Arrow" keys simultaneously & momentarily to display the "Advanced Settings" option. Using the "Advanced Settings" menu, you can select the "Restore Defaults" option to clear the configuration. You can then start over with the configuration settings.

2. The old Battery Temperature Sensor (BTS) from the previous Freedom Combi Inverter/Charger does NOT work with the SW series devices. The status display will show "N/A" on the top line with the battery voltage & charge amps. Xantrex thinks that using the old BTS may have been contributing to the charge issue.

Everything looks normal at this point but just need to see if it lasts for atleast a full day. I am encouraged at this point.
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