I know many of you have installed the Samsung RF197 in your coach, but there are a few coaches with the heater under the Norcold limiting the space for the install. I thought some might like to see how I installed mine. Lots of thanks to Bob and Richard for ideas that made this job easier.
The standard RF197 is 69 3/4" tall with the wheels in place. My coach had 70 3/4" from the top of the heater to where the refer doors will clear the roof (ceiling light and speaker).
The below picture is the cabinet once the Norcold was removed. I used Bob's idea of removing the floor with a small hydraulic jack. I jacked the floor up in a couple of places and it broke loose. I sawed it in half and pulled it out. Monaco did not spare the staples!
This photo shows the propane heater and a couple of issues that had to be overcome. The drain pipe had to be rerouted around the front of the heater and some lines and wiring tied up against the wall.
In this photo, I removed the pink insulation and replaced it with 3/4" foam board. I also rerouted the drain line. The two large white connections are removable unions. If I need to pull the heater, it will be tough, but doable.
This is a photo of the electrical for the refer, remounted on the edge of the exterior door. The upper outlet in the upper box has one plug run off the Magnum 2000 inverter. The lower outlet in the upper box is for the new Magnum 600 inverter.
The lower box has the original shore power line that does not run through the 2000 watt inverter.
If you look closely, there is a metal frame (angle iron) now mounted over the top of the heater. It's the same level as the heater and supported at the four corners. It basically creates a set of parallel rails that will allow a matching frame attached to the bottom of the refer to slide in with no floor being used.
Here is the frame made out of 3/4" square tubing that mounts to the bottom of the refer. By removing the refer wheels, I was able to shorten the overall height of the refer by an inch. I was able to use three refer frame screws to attach the frame to the bottom front of the refer and drilled two holes through the rear of the refer frame to connect at the back. I used two sided tape along with the screws to attach the frame to the bottom of the refer.
Once the frame was on, I used a furniture dolly as others had suggested to move the Samsung around the coach. With the square tubing frame and rail system, I was able to easily slide the refer in and out while fitting everything.
This photo shows a mount I screwed to the upper right rear of the refer. It is accessed through the original refer roof vent. The roof vent is framed in aluminum from the factory. I added an arm from the roof vent frame to this bracket to secure the top of the refer. I also used two sided type to assist in holding this bracket on.
This is the refer installed. I made the front rail system adjustable. Once the refer was in place, I was able to add shims to both front rails to lift the refer and make it sit flush in the cabinet.
I removed the wood trim that was at the top of the Norcold and turned it sideways, changing the trim from 2" to 3/4". I used black door edging foam around the sides and top to seal the gap between the frame and refer. It worked out to be a perfect fit.
I locked the refer in place by running a bolt through the rail system in the left rear corner (accessible through the exterior vent door) and through the rail system at the front of the refer.
I really scored here. The frame with large louvers that was originally below the Norcold and provided air intake for the heater was just the right size to still fit under the new refer without cutting it down. I left off the base/height adjuster cover that came with the Samsung.
The original frame with louvers used large 2" wide louvers that were actually attached to the back of the frame, not inside of it. I removed the louvers and ripped them in half lengthwise, giving me two louvers finished on one side. I cut their length by about an inch and then glued them back inside the original frame. I took a left over louver and made two spacers to keep the now thinner louvers straight. In this photo the louvered frame is just laying up against the reefer. Tomorrow I'll probably attach it with the same latches Monaco uses on their drawers to hold it in place.
This is a close up of the newly designed louvered door.
This is a side view of the installation.
I fired up the Samsung and it was at temp in about two hours. I checked the heat at the rear several times and could hardly notice any. I'll probably leave the outside access door alone to allow more air flow since this was a tight fit. I'll put some door screen over the vents on the inside to keep the bugs out.
I also fired up the heater. It produced very little heat under the refer. Most of the vents on the heater are air intake vents. Only the front edge of the heater box got warm. We rarely use this heater.
This project was not hard, but very time consuming. It took me four full days to remove and replace the refers. There was a lot of exacting measurements and metal fabricating.