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Old 03-14-2023, 09:32 PM   #1
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Carriage Carri-Lite Cameo Evergreen Lifestyle FWS Relay install

I got tired of the intermittent nature of my FWS so it was time to install the relay I purchased 11 months ago (Tarp and winch reversing solenoid from amazon)
Measured the voltage at the battery (13.39v) and then at the motor (4.21v). WOW.. no wonder it is slow.
Noticed the 2 black wires off the brake, and one was a red wire under paint. Measured the polarity when the slide was going in and the positive, red, (ON MY COACH, 2009 Carri-Lite36MAX1) is in and the black is out. Pl;us there were 2 spade connections wrapped up in tape, and the wire is small, looks like around #18.
Took about 2.5 ft of #8 fine stranded wire and soldered ring terminals on the black and ran from the center front of the solenoid, to the lower 9/16 (probably 3/8 bolt size) holding the slide chain drive mechanism to the frame.
Soldered a ring terminal on the red wire, stripped off the insulation on the wire from the 15amp circuit breaker going up into the bathroom chase, and soldered it to the other end.
Crimped the red and black wires from the motor brake to the large outer lugs on the solenoid.
TESTED the in and out with little momentary connections while my wife held in the slide switches above. Scared me how fast the slide moves.
Ran the red actuator wire to the spade terminal on the side with the red motor wire, and the black actuator wire to the black wire side of the solenoid.
Was late so went upstairs and move the slide in and out.. SCARY for I know my limit switch is just rattling around and not connected to anything.
The power of the chain reduction drive could push the coach wall right in and or out of the frame.
Ran out of time and will replace the 1 old push spade connector and tidy up the wiring the assure vibration will not pull or shake anything loose next weekend, but hanging wire pics are easier to follow anyway.
Most important is to properly mount the limit switch under the garbage can area, and then to adjust the rollers.
Iím relieved for the lower part of the FWS is the same on the bottom of both ends as far as, when all the way out, the bottom touches both front and rear, pretty much equally. The top is WAY off. Dug into the wall in the bedroom and and inch out from the wall in the entertainment TV area. I think I have some small rectangle plates to make in my future.

spade lugs under tape and black painted red wires on brake
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Old 03-14-2023, 09:35 PM   #2
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soldered wire from 15amp circuit breaker in Fuse panel

closeup of relay, wired

BTW. Taking the brake off the motor is easy. Putting it back on is a BEAR, and Iím being polite to bears.

Not for the average person. How that FWS moved at 4v is mind-boggling to me.

Also all bolts on the chain gear assembly and motor were tight.
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Old 03-15-2023, 07:21 AM   #3
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Nice info write up Jack.
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Old 03-16-2023, 09:29 AM   #4
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Another Elkhart special. Nice fix.
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Old 03-16-2023, 10:20 AM   #5
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Great post thank you ! As a FWS Lifestyle owner the wiring upgrade is one of the best things we have done to ours.
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Old 03-17-2023, 05:47 AM   #6
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We had a Carriage and then a 2014 LS36fw for 8 years. Sad they went by the way side. Great built trailer. I did the wining and solenoid upgrade to ours shortly after getting it and couldn't believe the difference it made in the slide out travel. Hang on to that puppy......you'll regret getting anything else!
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Old 03-20-2023, 02:51 PM   #7
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Carriage Carri-Lite 36Max1

Thanks!!
I see your profile pic has the FWS Lifestyle.
I did rent a few trailers before stumbling into the Carriage family, and quickly noticed the build quality and the various levels of build. Yes it would have been nice to find a Royals, but 100% happy with the 2 Carri-Lite (1996 Cashay and the 2009 Carri-Lite 36Max1)
The 1996 is REALLY well built, just missing a few newer amenities (plus not big enough), but that slide is solid. The 2009 seems to resolve the size (the 3rd slide in the bedroom really makes a difference in the room), and a more modern feel. I especially like soft ceilings.
Yes I think I am stuck, now just need to learn how to do full body paint (GRIN)
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Old 03-24-2023, 06:32 AM   #8
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If you like the design of the former Carriage fifth wheel, check out the Lifestyle which is a Carriage carryover. It was started in 2013 after the 2012 demise of Carriage. Employed many of the same Carriage employees. They made a few changes to them. One of them was moving the slide motors to the middle of the slide. They also improved the motor mounts.
We had a 2011 Cameo and a 2014 Lifestyle. Both were well built and had great insulation especially in the floor.
We had the Rv Flex Armor lifetime roof installed on our 2014 LS36fw. Super rig and never gave us trouble.
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