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Old 07-29-2020, 11:58 PM   #1
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32" LED TV for my 2004 Dolphin

I had this posted over in another thread in the Class A section, but it really belongs here as it relates more to the cabinetry found in National mohos than in other brands.

There have been several threads in past on installing LED TVs in the overhead cabinet in place of the original 27" RCA TV, but many of these threads are several years old now. TV's have gotten even lighter just in the last few years, so what I've done is a little different. Since the new 32" LED TV only weighs 8 lbs, I decided I could get away with mounting it to the wooden fascia that surrounds the TV on most Nationals rather than to the heavy metal tray the old 125 lb TV was mounted to. I'll probably just remove the old metal pieces altogether.

I also found a sound bar on Amazon that's perfect to fill the gap that's left below the current 32" TVs, since they are wider but not as tall as the old 27" set. Like most TV's these days, the speakers on my new TV are on the bottom-- not great for a TV in a cabinet-- so the volume and quality using the sound bar are greatly improved.

I bought a standard TV wall mount ($10 or so) then attached the mount to some 30" long pieces of 2 x 3 screwed to the sides of the wooden frame. I also cut up a couple small pieces for the speaker bar to hang on to and screwed them to the bottom of the frame. This particular speaker bar has holes in the back for hanging to a wall, so it was easy to come with a way to attach it. Here's a link to the speaker I used.

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

The TV was $100 at Best Buy, and the speaker bar was $49 on Amazon, plus it had a 10% coupon, so $45 was the final cost. It's exactly the size needed, and is bluetooth capable so you can play music from your phone or tablet. It comes with a remote to switch between TV or bluetooth modes and to control the volume. It also has controls on the side, but you can't access them once the speaker is installed. You don't need to though, as everything can be controlled from the remote.

Here's the completed assembly ready to go back into the Dolphin. I used some foam (actually pipe insulation foam) to fill the 1/2" or so gap between the TV and the frame.
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Old 07-30-2020, 09:57 AM   #2
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Nice job on the TV/speaker project! My 32" has been acting up for years now not turning on or shutting down, but it's hanging on. I have an older Samsung 32" that has forward facing speakers in the bottom frame. It will be a perfect replacement for my current TV, but I wanted to do exactly what you did for better sound and playing music. I want a sound bar with a wireless sub though.
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Old 07-30-2020, 10:26 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TJHUB View Post
Nice job on the TV/speaker project! My 32" has been acting up for years now not turning on or shutting down, but it's hanging on. I have an older Samsung 32" that has forward facing speakers in the bottom frame. It will be a perfect replacement for my current TV, but I wanted to do exactly what you did for better sound and playing music. I want a sound bar with a wireless sub though.
Yeah, this sound bar is pretty good for what it is-- a cheap sound bar-- but you won't mistake it for something like a Bose. Bass is somewhat lacking. The TV has two audio outputs, so I plan to try plugging the Dolphin's built-on speakers into the other one too to see how that sounds. Won't really know until I try. The moho is at the shop getting new belts and hoses installed right now so I'll have to wait a couple days for that.

TV's are so cheap now it's crazy. This is Insignia brand, which I've thought of as a cheap brand, but it has Consumer Reports highest reliability rating and was 2nd only to Samsung in 32" picture quality. For $95 plus free two-day shipping I couldn't pass it up. I have an Insignia bluetooth audio amplifier for the TV at home too, and it's been trouble free.

Also, all 32" inch TVs are within a few tenths of an inch of each other as far as size goes, so just pick one with the picture and features that you like. I didn't want a "Smart" TV for the motor home as RV park wi-fi isn't usually good enough to support streaming, and we already have an Amazon Fire Stick we can use for that if we really want to. We mostly just use our Dish Network tailgater sat dish when we're on the road.
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:03 PM   #4
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Nice job!! How did you get the wood frame out? On my SeaBreeze there are 2 dowels (I assume screws on the other side of the dowels) on either side of the middle section. Is this where the center section attaches?

Al
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Old 07-31-2020, 12:14 PM   #5
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I did something similar to this except I mounted the mount to the left side of the inside of the cabinet. I can pull the TV away from the frame and swing it from side to side or tilt it as I feel necessary.
This also gives me space in the cabinet for DVD's, remotes etc. The TV simply acts as a door on the cabinet.
It stays in place well when driving down the highway also.
The TV I bought is an RCA with a built in DVD player 32". $149.95
Lynn
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Old 07-31-2020, 02:34 PM   #6
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Lynn, any chance of photos showing how You installed the tv? Thx & have a Great Day
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Old 07-31-2020, 03:27 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by FLRosebud View Post
Nice job!! How did you get the wood frame out? On my SeaBreeze there are 2 dowels (I assume screws on the other side of the dowels) on either side of the middle section. Is this where the center section attaches?

Al
The "dowels" are just wooden caps. Dig them out with an awl or ice pick. They're just a press fit in the hole. There are philips head wood screws underneath the caps. Some Nationals also have a center screw at the front/top of the frame too. Yes, with those screws removed the whole frame assembly pulls right out.
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Old 07-31-2020, 03:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LETMGROW View Post
I did something similar to this except I mounted the mount to the left side of the inside of the cabinet. I can pull the TV away from the frame and swing it from side to side or tilt it as I feel necessary.
This also gives me space in the cabinet for DVD's, remotes etc. The TV simply acts as a door on the cabinet.
It stays in place well when driving down the highway also.
The TV I bought is an RCA with a built in DVD player 32". $149.95
Lynn
I looked at that RCA TV too, but as I recall the DVD slot was on the side. That works for the way you mounted your TV but wouldn't for mine as I can't access the side of the TV once it's installed.
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Old 08-01-2020, 05:54 AM   #9
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Lynn, any chance of photos showing how You installed the tv? Thx & have a Great Day
I'll see if my daughter can stop by and handle this for me. My cheapo phone doesn't take good pictures.
CamJam1, Yes, the DVD slot is on the side of the RCA TV.
Lynn
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Old 08-01-2020, 09:13 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CamJam1 View Post
The "dowels" are just wooden caps. Dig them out with an awl or ice pick. They're just a press fit in the hole. There are philips head wood screws underneath the caps. Some Nationals also have a center screw at the front/top of the frame too. Yes, with those screws removed the whole frame assembly pulls right out.
Thanks. I just ordered the sound bar, and will make the attempt to remount probably next weekend. I've wanted to "shave" about 2-3" off of that section of the cabinet, flushing it up closer the the two side cabinets. I figured that would "open" up the front a bit, AND remove an object I've bumped my head on more than once. This might be time to do that. I have a friend who owns a really good woodshop, so I'm sure we could make perfect cuts. My wife just said she just doesn't want to actually witness me doing it....

Al
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Old 08-01-2020, 10:13 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by FLRosebud View Post
Thanks. I just ordered the sound bar, and will make the attempt to remount probably next weekend. I've wanted to "shave" about 2-3" off of that section of the cabinet, flushing it up closer the the two side cabinets. I figured that would "open" up the front a bit, AND remove an object I've bumped my head on more than once. This might be time to do that. I have a friend who owns a really good woodshop, so I'm sure we could make perfect cuts. My wife just said she just doesn't want to actually witness me doing it....

Al
I wanted to shave some off the front of mine too, but didn't want to deal with the resulting gap that would be left in the ceiling. Your friend's wood shop should have no problem taking care of that for you.

Do you have the old set out yet, Al? If not, here's something that might help you. Look at the second photo in this thread (https://www.irv2.com/forums/f105/fro...1lx-89466.html) and you'll notice there are two metal tabs that are welded to the bottom tray. These fit into an indentation on the bottom of the old TV. Even though I'd removed all but the rear bolts (closest to the windshield, which need to stay in to act as a hinge) the TV would not budge. That's because the metal tabs were wedged into the TV's indentations. You have to pry the tray and the TV apart, but make sure you have lots of help because that's the only thing keeping the 125 lb TV from crashing down.
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Old 08-01-2020, 12:26 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by CamJam1 View Post
I wanted to shave some off the front of mine too, but didn't want to deal with the resulting gap that would be left in the ceiling. Your friend's wood shop should have no problem taking care of that for you.

Do you have the old set out yet, Al? If not, here's something that might help you. Look at the second photo in this thread (https://www.irv2.com/forums/f105/fro...1lx-89466.html) and you'll notice there are two metal tabs that are welded to the bottom tray. These fit into an indentation on the bottom of the old TV. Even though I'd removed all but the rear bolts (closest to the windshield, which need to stay in to act as a hinge) the TV would not budge. That's because the metal tabs were wedged into the TV's indentations. You have to pry the tray and the TV apart, but make sure you have lots of help because that's the only thing keeping the 125 lb TV from crashing down.
Yes, it's been out for a while. I mounted a 3/4" piece of plywood to the back and attached an expandable TV bracket and mounted my 32" Samsung Smart TV. However, I can not remember how we did the plywood mount. The TV is 28", and the opening is 27", so the TV is up against the cabinet.

FYI - my wife and I just got back from a month out, and we streamed all of our TV from our phones. NEVER had an issue. We cut the cord at home and went with Roku for our interface and Youtube TV, and now we get the same shows and cloud DVR we have at home in the RV, for no additional cost. We have 35gig of data on our phones, and this set-up has saved us a bunch of money.

Al
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Old 08-01-2020, 02:43 PM   #13
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Further to my original post, if you're going to mount the TV the way I did you MUST remove the metal frame. I didn't realize that when I wrote the first post. 18 phllips-head screws hold it in, so bring your cordless screwdriver!

That frame and metal tray alone weighed 28 lbs! I haven't weighed the old TV yet, but I hear numbers from between 80 and 130 lbs from others who have done this. The new one is eight pounds, plus maybe another ten at most for the speaker bar and lumber that I added.

With the frame and bottom tray gone, you'll have to find a way to mount the factory speaker that was attached to the bottom of the tray if you still want to use it. I don't need the speaker now, but it fills the hole in the plastic trim cover. I'm also toying with the idea to mount some gauges, like transmission temp, in that space. Not sure just yet what I'll do with that.

Here's the TV installed back in the moho. The gap at the bottom of the speaker bar is normally not visible when the bottom trim cover is in place. It wasn't when I took this photo, so the light from the windshield is shining through.
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Old 08-01-2020, 03:09 PM   #14
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Next time you go down the road about 80% less overhead noise, no overhead movement. When I removed my TV and all the metal box it was 107 LBS.
I mounted my 32 inch Samsung in the frame. Best money ever spent on the Motorhome.
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