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Old 01-21-2011, 10:46 PM   #1
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76 Dodge class c project

Hello all from Chilliwack BC.
Picked up this 76 Dodge 21ft class c project this past summer for $200. She has a 440/727 combo with 97,000 on it. It has dual air but the cab air doesn't work, the rooftop works great. It also has a fairly new electronic ignition fridge. The roof had been leaking in the bathroom and the vent was missing alltogether which caused a fair bit of damage. There had also been a previous leak above the bunk but was fixed and dry when we purchaced it.
First things first, the registration turned out to be a bit of a nightmare as the papers had been lost and it took 3 months to track down the previous owner to get new ones. After it was finally registered in my name I gutted the bathroom and replaced all of the rotten framework and flooring. I installed all new plumbing and insulation, and all of the wall and ceiling panels were replaced. I built a new closet and vanity and purchaced a new toilet. So far I have not finished the tub inclosure and some of the trim work on the cabnets. I also ripped out the kitchen counter and replaced the range. I built a new counter top replaced the kitchen plumbing and refaced the walls. I also stripped the roof and re-sealed and coated the entire roof. The project came to a hault in November and I am planning to get back at it as soon as the weather starts to cooperate.
Anyway, here are a few pics of the beast.
I'll post up some more pics soon. I try to put up a link to my photobucket as soon as I organize it....lol.
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Old 01-22-2011, 06:09 AM   #2
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Ahhh! Seeing this brings back memories of our late 70's Coachmen 24' C. It appears that you are starting with one that was taken care of fairly well, all things considered. Make sure to post more pics are you make progress - it's always fun to see these rebuild projects from start to finish.
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Old 01-22-2011, 07:33 AM   #3
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Man, y'all do great work ! Nice looking rig... That 440 and 727 are just about bullet proof too.
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Old 01-22-2011, 11:48 PM   #4
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I have heard the 440/727 is a good combo, hopefully it will live up to its name as I plan to put a few miles on it. I replaced the thermoquad carb as the old one had a cracked body, common with the resin body carbs. It seems to run rich still but overall fairly well, bit of fine tuning and some jetting should fix that. While tuning the motor I found that the vacume advance was seized so I will have to pull the distributor and tear it apart as well, probably from sitting for about 8 to 10 years. As for the dash AC, I don't know what I'm going to do with that, I want it working but cant get the old system charged and will probably have to upgrade to a new system, that should cost me a few $$$$.
Next on the list is to finish installing the new wall and ceiling panels in the living area followed by the new flooring and carpet for the cab that is currently stored in my garage. I am also having a friend who happens to do upholstry as a hobbie recover the booth and sofa cushions.
I can't wait to get on the road again, my wife gave me crap for selling the truck camper before completing this project.
Here is a pic of my old camper on it's last trip, May long weekend fishing trip near Merritt BC.
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Old 01-23-2011, 05:14 AM   #5
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Reminds me of the truck camper we had, you'll enjoy not having to get out to get a sandwich and cup of coffee like y'all did with the slide in .... Don't expect stellar mileage with the 440/727, we had a '76 Southwind 28' Class A with that combo and would average about 7mpg with it.
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Old 01-23-2011, 06:03 AM   #6
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why cant you get dash air fixed shouls be easy as its old school you can get R-12A freon thats what i used
dave
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Old 01-23-2011, 05:36 PM   #7
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I was told I would have to evac, test and retrofit the old system to accept the new freon... Maybe that is just a Canadian thing? I'll have to do a bit more research.
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Old 01-23-2011, 06:02 PM   #8
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What they told you is true about retrofitting the A/C for R134a. While mine was at the service center getting other work done the mechanic asked if I would like to have the AC converted. I told him to go ahead. I didn't cost but about $100 to have it done and it works great now. Glad I had it done. Now if the weather would just warm up enough for me to use it! Another 3" last night on top of the 7" before that. It was kind of fun the first couple of days, but now it is just annoying.
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Old 01-23-2011, 06:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikakuja View Post
I was told I would have to evac, test and retrofit the old system to accept the new freon... Maybe that is just a Canadian thing? I'll have to do a bit more research.
That's the proper way to do it. If you do it like that and you have no leaks it will blow cold as ice.
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Old 01-23-2011, 06:42 PM   #10
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Up dating from freon (R12) is not all that big of a deal as they first made it out to be.
Yes the freon if you have any left needs to be evacuated, then the compressor oil is changed then it's recharged with 134 and new fittings are screwed onto the old freon fittings so as not to mix the systems up. Anything else they tell you that needs replacement like a drier is not actually true except from a purist, money making stand point of view.

Yours being this old may or may not need some new hoses as supposedly the 134 could leak through some of the more older more porous hoses.

It's no where near as expensive as they first made out when the change came into being.

Supposedly the 134 does not put out as cold air as freon did but it's been so long since freon systems that work have really been in operation that's hard to tell anymore as everything new for so long now has been 134.

It's well worth having the system converted if you already have the parts installed.
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Old 01-23-2011, 09:57 PM   #11
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Thanks for clarifying. I think I will just take it in and have it done right. Being a 35 year old unit I would rather have it checked for leaks and retrofitted for R134A, at least then I know it will work when I need it (unless murphy has anything to say about it).
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Old 01-23-2011, 10:05 PM   #12
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Another question..........my coleman thermostat is shot and needs to be replaced. Is there a 12v electronic version that will work for me? If possible I would like to find one that I could wire into the ac unit as well and eliminate the temp control on the unit.....I would like a programable one similar to what runs the heat pump and furnace in my house if that is possible.
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Old 01-24-2011, 05:07 AM   #13
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Another question..........my coleman thermostat is shot and needs to be replaced. Is there a 12v electronic version that will work for me? If possible I would like to find one that I could wire into the ac unit as well and eliminate the temp control on the unit.....I would like a programable one similar to what runs the heat pump and furnace in my house if that is possible.
As I understand most any thermostat will work for the furnace as they work on low voltage (if not someone will set me straight), you may have a problem with trying to get the AC to work on the same thermostat.
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:06 AM   #14
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In my search I have found that most household units are 24v and they won't work with the 12v furnace in the rv, or so I have been told.. I havn't checked the voltage on the AC unit but my luck being a 110v appliance it will be 24v at the thermostat.....???? I will probably have to run dual thermostats as I doubt there is such a thing as dual voltage units....
Just to clarify, the reason I am looking to add a thermostat to the AC unit is that the temperature control on my Coleman AC unit is worn out and I am having a hard time finding a replacement for it....
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