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Old 11-10-2020, 08:43 AM   #1
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Inverter Failed on 2005 Vectra 40AD

My inverter went out on my 2005 Vectra about 16 months ago. Ive been using bat charger to get by. Made by Deminsions Unlimited, INC., Model: WIN-12X20B3RT I called Winnebago Parts in Iowa, no stock, called Deminsions, no stock, they offered to build one for me, would take 2 months. Big $$$, Looking back now I probably should have gone ahead and ordered it. !! Has anyone had any luck finding one of these ? Does anyone know if these can be repaired and if so who? After market units can be purchased of course, but their cable/conductor does not match up with what Winnebago wired the coach with.
If anyone has had to deal with this issue I would so appreciate any suggestions/ideas on how you remedied it please? Thanks so much.
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Old 11-10-2020, 08:45 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pusherdiva View Post
My inverter went out on my 2005 Vectra about 16 months ago. Ive been using bat charger to get by. Made by Deminsions Unlimited, INC., Model: WIN-12X20B3RT I called Winnebago Parts in Iowa, no stock, called Deminsions, no stock, they offered to build one for me, would take 2 months. Big $$$, Looking back now I probably should have gone ahead and ordered it. !! Has anyone had any luck finding one of these ? Does anyone know if these can be repaired and if so who? After market units can be purchased of course, but their cable/conductor does not match up with what Winnebago wired the coach with.
If anyone has had to deal with this issue I would so appreciate any suggestions/ideas on how you remedied it please? Thanks so much.

Upgrade to something better.
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Old 11-10-2020, 10:50 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by Pusherdiva View Post
My inverter went out on my 2005 Vectra about 16 months ago. Ive been using bat charger to get by. Made by Deminsions Unlimited, INC., Model: WIN-12X20B3RT I called Winnebago Parts in Iowa, no stock, called Deminsions, no stock, they offered to build one for me, would take 2 months. Big $$$, Looking back now I probably should have gone ahead and ordered it. !! Has anyone had any luck finding one of these ? Does anyone know if these can be repaired and if so who? After market units can be purchased of course, but their cable/conductor does not match up with what Winnebago wired the coach with.
If anyone has had to deal with this issue I would so appreciate any suggestions/ideas on how you remedied it please? Thanks so much.
Pusherdiva,
First off, I think you did GREAT by having that Dimensions unit last as long as it did. Second, you've been advised to upgrade to something "better". Well, that's all well and good advice, if, IF, you need SOMETHING BETTER. You don't say how long you've owned that coach and how long that after you'd purchased it, that Dimensions unit went south.

Winne and Itasca installed those units in that era for thousands of coaches. Ours lasted 11 years before the battery charging side of that Inverter/Charger gave up the ghost. I thought that was great duration. The Dimensions unit has been given a bad rap over time. I know folks with Vectras, Journeys, Meridians and Horizons of that era that are still using their Dimensions unit without issue.

But, that's beside the point. When ours went south and we needed something to replace it, my ever so diligent wife, cruising through Craigslist at the time, just happened to find one for sale. It was a Magnum 2012ME which, in all reality, is identical to the Dimensions unit only made by Magnum. Now, I don't know how much you know about electricity but, in short, when it comes to inverters and, especially the larger ones like we're talking about here, there are two different types of electricity that these units provide.

The Dimensions unit that you have and we had and was installed in a few zillion Winnes and Itascas, is a MODIFIED SIGN WAVE unit. Without getting waaaaaaaaaaaaaay overly technical here, modified sign wave electricity is not PURE ELECTRICITY. It is however, good enough to run about 99.9999999999999999% of what's installed in about 99.9999999999% of the RV's out in RV world. And, it's a cheaper unit to produce.

The other type of electricity is PURE SIGN WAVE. Pure sign wave electricity is what you get out of your outlets in your residence. It is a cleaner form of electricity. But, by and large, not many pure sign wave Inverter/Chargers are installed in RVs, especially in yours and our era coaches. Incidentally, our coach is an almost identical sister ship to your coach. It's an '04 Itasca Horizon 36GD with the CAT C-7 330HP.

Soooooo, with all that garb being said, you DON'T NEED another Dimensions unit to run all of the 120VAC needs in your coach. And, you don't need the Dimensions unit to actively charge your coach batteries when parked. You do however, need an EQUAL unit to that Dimensions unit. The Magnum 2012ME is such a unit. With not very much effort, the Magnum unit is easily installed in the same exact place as your Dimensions unit is. The wiring from and to that Dimensions unit, fits right into the same exact places on the Magnum.

The only item that will need to be replaced besides your Dimensions unit will be the remote control for your Dimensions unit. You see, the Magnum unit uses its own remote unit. And, the cord/cable (basically a telephone cable with identical ends) will need to be installed. It's not overly hard, just time consuming.

Now, I'm referencing the *Magnum" unit's because, it's simply what we went to when our Dimensions unit failed. And, it happened to be available on the used market at the time we were looking for one. Can you use another brand of the same size and capabilities, sure you can. Whatever model you choose, will also need its own remote due to the fact that those remotes are designed to operate their parent Inverters or Inverter/Chargers.

Incidentally, the *remote* I'm speaking of, is the one at the bottom of your ONE PLACE control panel in the middle of your coach. It's the one that controls whether or not your want to INVERT your 12VDC into 120VAC to run appliances when not on shore power. It also controls battery charging from your Dimensions unit to your house batteries.

So, if the Dimensions unit is discarded, unless you go back to another identical Dimensions unit, your remote for it, will also have to be discarded and a new one installed, to operate your new brand inverter/charger. PM me if you'd like more info, be glad to help.
Scott
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Old 11-10-2020, 04:13 PM   #4
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Magnum & Dimensions are the same company. Find a model that is equivalent and maybe even compatible with your remote display and anything else the Dimensions was wired to. Fire Up has given some advice on that.
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Old 11-10-2020, 04:27 PM   #5
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Magnum likely has a near plug and play replacement.
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Old 11-10-2020, 04:56 PM   #6
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Looking at around $1350 for magnum 2012 pure sine plus controller . Now if you boondock a lot .For around $1500 you could go with Victron hybrid system and have load sharing or about 2k for new magnum 3012RV. These can tie into main feeds at ATS. The new magnum 3012 RV has 50 dual pass through from what understand.
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Old 11-10-2020, 06:55 PM   #7
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Well,
Untill he/she/they get back to us, it's hard to advise anything that's above just replacing a bad inverter/charger based on we don't know what kind of money he/she/they want to spend and, what kind of technical part he/she/they want to play in the changeout.

Mr Sheets,
Yes, that's kind-a what I was eluding to was the fact that, the Magnum I installed was/is an *almost* identical unit as the Dimensions unit. But, no matter what unit they replace the Dimensions with, they WILL have to purchase and install, a new remote and highly possible, a new interface cable. That is of course if they don't replace it with another Dimensions unit. If that's the case, then no new remote and interface cable will be needed. We won't know 'till he/she/they come back.
Scott
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Old 11-11-2020, 07:32 AM   #8
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First of all I am so thankful and amazed at the wealth of knowledge out there and your willingness to share it! I wish I had asked for help on iRV2 immediately when the inverter/charger went out! I did have a local mobile RV service guy look at it (about 6 months ago) and he said no problem getting something that would charge my batts but the remote would have to be mounted in with the inverter. And I didn't like that option. Anyway shoulda coulda not good! Scott, wow you've given me a "class" on how these inverter/chargers operate! And what my options might be! Thanks so much to everyone for the invaluable information. Especially about the Magnum 2012ME! Scott how did they run the telephone cable from the Remote to the Inverter? Was the tech able to run it up through the floor/walls etc. to the panel?
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Old 11-11-2020, 03:24 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Pusherdiva View Post
First of all I am so thankful and amazed at the wealth of knowledge out there and your willingness to share it! I wish I had asked for help on iRV2 immediately when the inverter/charger went out! I did have a local mobile RV service guy look at it (about 6 months ago) and he said no problem getting something that would charge my batts but the remote would have to be mounted in with the inverter. And I didn't like that option. Anyway shoulda coulda not good! Scott, wow you've given me a "class" on how these inverter/chargers operate! And what my options might be! Thanks so much to everyone for the invaluable information. Especially about the Magnum 2012ME! Scott how did they run the telephone cable from the Remote to the Inverter? Was the tech able to run it up through the floor/walls etc. to the panel?
Pusherdiva,
First off, you're welcome. Second, *I'm* the tech that did the change-over of the Dimensions to the Magnum. The wife and I did the cable/phone cable routing. While I recall it was a kind-a pain in the but.. it was not insurmountable. If I recall, I *think* this is what we did:

1. Remove the entire *One Place Panel* from it's mounting on that wall. You don't have to disconnect ALL the wiring, just remove it far enough to work behind it, and the hole where it sits. Then, remove that remote for the Dimensions unit. It unplugs, just like a telephone cable does.

2. Now, here's where it gets to be both fun, tricky, and a pain in the.,... I think I was in the toilet area, down low and removed any and all base molding in that toilet area. Somehow, I forgot, but, when she lowered the new cable for the new remote down that hole for the One place panel, I could grab it down at the bottom, and, pull all the excess cable out into the bathroom. Then, I tucked it into the base of the paneling, along the wall, behind the toilet.

3. Then, I ran that cable under the paneling of the wall NEXT to the toilet. Then, in our coach, it would go under the cabinet that used for the washer/dryer. Again, If I recall, once under that cabinet, I could or did, either drill a hole in the backside bottom of that cabinet, and into the compartment where the new Magnum is now living.

4. The rest is easy. You just tie up any excess cable and plug it into the Magnum.

5. Return to the bathroom and re-install any and all base molding to cover up the hidden cable. Done.

6. By the way, the new remote, for the Magnum, is the exact same size, and utilizes the same holes for attaching it to the panel, as the Dimensions unit used.

Now, you might ask, "Well, if the remote is that close in size and uses the same holes as the Dimensions unit, why not use it? Good question. The reason is, THEY ARE TWO DIFFERENT REMOTES, FOR DIFFERENT INVERTERS. It just so happens that the engineers for the remote for the Magnum, made the mounting and size of their remote, to fit the same spot where the Dimensions remote used to live. But, the issue is, the cables are seriously different. There is no way on this planet, that a Dimensions remote cable, will work with a Magnum Remote, even though they are both telephone cable style.

Again, you don't have to buy a Magnum. There are other, cheaper units out there. But, I'm one of those that:

1. Want's to do a job, ONE TIME, AND ONE TIME ONLY
2. And that means get quality replacement parts and equipment.
3. When I found out the total parameters, size, wiring, and all, of the Magnum unit, were almost identical to the Dimensions unit, I figured why search any further? And, as stated, we got really lucky in the fact that we found a 6 month old Magnum unit for sale on Craigslist.

It was being sold because, a gent with a 6 month old coach, had a wife that that developed decreasing health condition. And, she needed specialized health equipment to be carried in their motorhome. And, that specialized equipment, needed CLEAN ELECTRICITY which, meant his Modified Sign Wave Magnum 2012ME would not work with that special equipment so, he purchased a PURE SIGN WAVE Magnum Inverter/charger to get the job done.

That unit hovers around $800 or $900 if I recall. We got it for $500 at that time. Now, the remote did not come with it 'cause, his remote would work with the new Magnum he purchased. So, that meant we had to purchase a new remote, specifically for the unit we just bought. The one we purchased is this one:

https://www.solar-electric.com/me-rc...All%20Products

As you can see, it's identical in size etc. to the Dimensions remote.

Again, any questions regarding this issue you're having, please feel free to PM me.
Scott
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Old 11-11-2020, 05:05 PM   #10
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Does the dimensions use different than the usual phone cable to remote. I thought most inverters for 25yrs were mostly straight cable or wires reversed on one plug that you can remake the one end.
Or do you want to move panel.
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Old 11-11-2020, 08:35 PM   #11
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Does the dimensions use different than the usual phone cable to remote. I thought most inverters for 25yrs were mostly straight cable or wires reversed on one plug that you can remake the one end.
Or do you want to move panel.
Well Sir,
All I can tell you is, my Dimensions unit failed, in the battery charging side of it, and I was replaced by the Magnum 2012ME. When I went to plug in the remote plug into the new Magnum, it would not fit. Then is when I found out the Magnum uses a proprietary arrangement of it's own remote and, it's own cable. And yes, the one end is reversed, if I recall. It was a while ago, around 7 years + so, my memory ain't what it used to be, not that it was any good in the first place.
Scott
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Old 11-12-2020, 07:41 AM   #12
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Ok thanks for clarification .I'm sure I have read many times that you need to replace the end and reverse wiring maybe different OEM inverter was replaced. IDK. Maybe just wrong info repeated like I believed. I now see it's round ,maybe Cat5 or Cat 6. Those are 4 twisted pairs. I tried to find cable reviews on Amazon to see if someone said it's just this or that.
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Well Sir,
All I can tell you is, my Dimensions unit failed, in the battery charging side of it, and I was replaced by the Magnum 2012ME. When I went to plug in the remote plug into the new Magnum, it would not fit. Then is when I found out the Magnum uses a proprietary arrangement of it's own remote and, it's own cable. And yes, the one end is reversed, if I recall. It was a while ago, around 7 years + so, my memory ain't what it used to be, not that it was any good in the first place.
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Old 11-12-2020, 08:13 AM   #13
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I am so grateful to everyone for all your help! And especially Scott for taking the time to sit and type in all that great information/instruction! WOW! Really big time thanks!!!!
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Old 11-12-2020, 09:30 AM   #14
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I am so grateful to everyone for all your help! And especially Scott for taking the time to sit and type in all that great information/instruction! WOW! Really big time thanks!!!!
Roger that, please keep us informed of your remedy for this situation.
Scott
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