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Old 07-08-2019, 07:41 AM   #1
BandBmalin
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3820FK Improvements

Finally had some time to do a bit more to my fiver. Since I'm often times guilty of "over analysis paralysis", I did a bunch of reading and research before making some of these seemingly minor mods. (Thanks everyone for your ideas that I read and learned from!) Already completed were:

1. Swapping king "trailer" mattress for queen "house" mattress and cutting the plywood support down to the correct size for the smaller mattress. We can now access the cabinets beside the bed where the washer/dryer could go someday.
2. Replacing factory receiver on the back with one bolted on from Etrailer. The new one adds frame rigidity where the factory one was welded to the bottom of the trailer's I-beams.
3. Removed the 2 air vent covers in the living room to greatly increase air flow into the living room. MUCH better at handling Florida heat and humidity now.
4. Added TST507 giving me peace of mind while towing!

Before heading off to camp for the 4th, I did 2 more (pics below, sorry about them all being sideways):
5. Pulled the vents off in the kitchen and inserted a short piece of pool noodle just after the vent to stop air from flowing down to the nose of the trailer where there are no more vents. (blue inside vent) I then put the factory vents back up. Wife noticed the difference without me telling her I did that one. (Was going to do in the back as well, but realized that the rear AC is on the wrong side of the bedroom vents to use the pool noodle trick.) Still need to add some PVC pipe to air returns and will upgrade remaining vents to high flow ones at some point.

6. Removed struts from convenience center door and added magnets. I was so tired of always having to bend over to do anything here. Should have done this one much sooner and the magnets are extremely strong. Was concerned about leaking and possibly pulling off, so I screwed and glued them onto the door and body. (pic of adhesive in case you're curious)

Best part about the most recent mods is total cost was less than $20 with lots of improvement. Next mod on the list is the 5th Airborne king pin that will be delivered in about a week!! Sadly, that mod was a bit more than $20.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Noodle in Vent.jpg (95.3 KB, 80 views)
File Type: jpg Convenience Door 1.jpg (226.8 KB, 58 views)
File Type: jpg Convenience Door 2.jpg (221.2 KB, 48 views)
File Type: jpg Glue.jpg (160.2 KB, 29 views)
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:22 AM   #2
Our3820FK
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Good Morning, we also have the 3820FK, I love your ideas. In the kitchen whee you put the pool noodle, is that the vent just above the fridge? I just got some PVC to take with me on our trip coming up soI can keep the A/C from collapsing. In the living area did you remove them completely or trim off the louvers as others have suggested? Where did you get the magnets from? i hit my head on that so many times I must have brain damage by now. Thanks for sharing
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:32 AM   #3
BandBmalin
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Thanks!
1. Correct. I put pool noodle inside the one next to the fridge and the other one closer to the bar as well so both runs are terminated just after those two vents. Don't do the bedroom as the rear AC is behind the vents.
2. In the living room, I simply removed the vent covers completely. They are just wide open now and didn't notice any decrease in flow at the other vents in the trailer afterwards so there seems to be plenty of air flow from the AC unit(s).
3. Magnets were from Amazon. Called: Hamilton Bowes #1 Strongest - RV & Trailer Magnetic Door/Baggage Door Catch Camper Black Plastic (2-Pair) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I'm debating whether or not to do the magnet mod to the door in the back granting access to the under bed storage area as well, but I haven't hit my head on that one much yet, plus I'm not inside that one too often.
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Old 07-08-2019, 08:38 AM   #4
BandBmalin
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Our3820FK,
On a side note, I scaled my set up on our way to the campground for the 4th for the first time. Was concerned after hearing all the talk about pin weights with a front kitchen design - especially since my TV is SRW. I'm within all my numbers with 1000 pounds still to spare on my drive axle. Have you found the same with yours? I still need to scale my TV empty, but at least my loaded weights still have some cushion.
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Old 07-08-2019, 03:11 PM   #5
Our3820FK
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I haven't had a chance to get it on the scale yet, maybe this trip but for sure in September when we head to the rally in Goshen. I will let you know. My Monty did not have a receiver on the rear, just the bumper, wish it had so we could haul the Gen on it. I'm starting all my work this coming weekend, I'll share photos as I go.

Rick
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Old 07-08-2019, 03:23 PM   #6
BandBmalin
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The receiver must have been an add for 2018? In any case, I cut mine off and added this one from Etrailer. (https://www.etrailer.com/RV-and-Camp...urt/13703.html) I put identical ones on my previous two travel trailers as well. I had the first one welded on and bolted the next two on including the one on my Montana. Rated for 350 tongue weight and 3500 towing so I'd assume it would hold your Gen. Took me about 3 hours and some cussing to install, but worth it in the end. PS: Thanks for your service. I did 8 1/2 in the AF myself. Got another 12 or so more in the civilian world before I get to add "retired" into my signature block!
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:10 AM   #7
Arkware
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Weighing your rig...

Last year at the Fall Rally it was available to get your rig weighed.
They did a really good job of evaluating AND explaining the weights, tires, and load ranges of both trailer and TV.

I'm pretty sure that this service will be available again this year.
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Old 07-10-2019, 06:27 AM   #8
Marty 579
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Thanks for listing the mods you made. I plan on copying the magnet upgrade along with opening up the vents for more airflow. I do have a question about the pool noodles in the ducts at the front. I always thought the system was supposed to be a “racetrack”. Do those ducts just dump the air out in some useless front area? Maybe I should block mine off too.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:14 AM   #9
BandBmalin
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Marty 579,
To the best of my knowledge, the air vents are simply 2 long, front to back, tubes in the ceiling with air dumps cut into them for the vents along the way.
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Old 07-15-2019, 09:25 AM   #10
BandBmalin
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This weekend, I did a couple more adds to my trailer that have been on my list. Minor, but important for us:

1. Added a vent cover (Ultra-breeze) over the bathroom fan. It rains a lot here in FL and I can't exhaust shower steam if the rain sensor has been activated so I'm stuck with relying on my AC to take care of the excess indoor humidity. Now, I can leave the fan on even in the rain! (Odd problem however - there were molded plastic pieces on the roof vent that I either had to cut off or work around to install the cover. I chose to use 8 - 2 on each corner - zip ties to hold the cover in place. Advantage - no messing with the sealant. The zip ties are UV resistant, so hopefully the outer one will also help shield the inner one?)

2. Added a paper towel holder on my convenience center door to cover over one of the previously mounted strut attachment holes left after the struts were removed. Of course, in addition to the 2 tiny screws, I glued it!

Supposedly, my 5th airborne king pin shipped on Friday - so hoping to install that before next camping trip at the end of the month! Won't be much of a test as the campground is only about 15 miles away, but at least I'll have it.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20190713_095149.jpg (124.6 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg 20190713_100056.jpg (120.0 KB, 21 views)
File Type: jpg 20190714_164639.jpg (120.2 KB, 17 views)
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Old 07-21-2019, 02:08 PM   #11
allenclme
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Thanks for the post. I've been trying to think about how to modify the vent diffusers to get better flow. Any thoughts on how to cut them down? There are 4 vents in my living room. Which one's did you remove? The backs take up at least 1/2 the duct space. What does the noodle up front do? Won't it dead end the raceway duct or does it matter? Sorry so many questions. Thanks in advance - Craig
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Old 07-21-2019, 02:08 PM   #12
Hamlej
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Love some of your mods and will definitely try them on our 3820FK. Our favorite mod was adding the ceiling fan in the bedroom. We have scaled our trailer several times and found the numbers exceeded the capability of our F250. Although I didnít have any issues with the SRW pulling the trailer I opted to step up to the F350 DRW for my piece of mind and safety issues. The pin weight is just a tad under 3K.
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Old 07-21-2019, 02:13 PM   #13
jimw@columbus.rr.comin
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Has anyone ever thought of using the magnets on the entry door?
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Old 07-21-2019, 03:47 PM   #14
jstadler
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can you show the noodle placement?

Can you show the noodle placement? I can't envision how you did this.

Thanks


Quote:
Originally Posted by BandBmalin View Post
Finally had some time to do a bit more to my fiver. Since I'm often times guilty of "over analysis paralysis", I did a bunch of reading and research before making some of these seemingly minor mods. (Thanks everyone for your ideas that I read and learned from!) Already completed were:

1. Swapping king "trailer" mattress for queen "house" mattress and cutting the plywood support down to the correct size for the smaller mattress. We can now access the cabinets beside the bed where the washer/dryer could go someday.
2. Replacing factory receiver on the back with one bolted on from Etrailer. The new one adds frame rigidity where the factory one was welded to the bottom of the trailer's I-beams.
3. Removed the 2 air vent covers in the living room to greatly increase air flow into the living room. MUCH better at handling Florida heat and humidity now.
4. Added TST507 giving me peace of mind while towing!

Before heading off to camp for the 4th, I did 2 more (pics below, sorry about them all being sideways):
5. Pulled the vents off in the kitchen and inserted a short piece of pool noodle just after the vent to stop air from flowing down to the nose of the trailer where there are no more vents. (blue inside vent) I then put the factory vents back up. Wife noticed the difference without me telling her I did that one. (Was going to do in the back as well, but realized that the rear AC is on the wrong side of the bedroom vents to use the pool noodle trick.) Still need to add some PVC pipe to air returns and will upgrade remaining vents to high flow ones at some point.

6. Removed struts from convenience center door and added magnets. I was so tired of always having to bend over to do anything here. Should have done this one much sooner and the magnets are extremely strong. Was concerned about leaking and possibly pulling off, so I screwed and glued them onto the door and body. (pic of adhesive in case you're curious)

Best part about the most recent mods is total cost was less than $20 with lots of improvement. Next mod on the list is the 5th Airborne king pin that will be delivered in about a week!! Sadly, that mod was a bit more than $20.
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Old 07-21-2019, 04:19 PM   #15
D&PMac
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BandBmalin, something that helped us (if you haven't already done this) is, we put a piano hinge between the doors for the washer/dryer and took off the factory hinges on the right side doors (upper and lower). This way they swing away from us to access the washer/dryer compartments. I enjoyed reading your post and will probably steal some ideas. Enjoy!!
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Old 07-21-2019, 04:37 PM   #16
Janine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BandBmalin View Post
Finally had some time to do a bit more to my fiver. Since I'm often times guilty of "over analysis paralysis", I did a bunch of reading and research before making some of these seemingly minor mods. (Thanks everyone for your ideas that I read and learned from!) Already completed were:

1. Swapping king "trailer" mattress for queen "house" mattress and cutting the plywood support down to the correct size for the smaller mattress. We can now access the cabinets beside the bed where the washer/dryer could go someday.
2. Replacing factory receiver on the back with one bolted on from Etrailer. The new one adds frame rigidity where the factory one was welded to the bottom of the trailer's I-beams.
3. Removed the 2 air vent covers in the living room to greatly increase air flow into the living room. MUCH better at handling Florida heat and humidity now.
4. Added TST507 giving me peace of mind while towing!

Before heading off to camp for the 4th, I did 2 more (pics below, sorry about them all being sideways):
5. Pulled the vents off in the kitchen and inserted a short piece of pool noodle just after the vent to stop air from flowing down to the nose of the trailer where there are no more vents. (blue inside vent) I then put the factory vents back up. Wife noticed the difference without me telling her I did that one. (Was going to do in the back as well, but realized that the rear AC is on the wrong side of the bedroom vents to use the pool noodle trick.) Still need to add some PVC pipe to air returns and will upgrade remaining vents to high flow ones at some point.

6. Removed struts from convenience center door and added magnets. I was so tired of always having to bend over to do anything here. Should have done this one much sooner and the magnets are extremely strong. Was concerned about leaking and possibly pulling off, so I screwed and glued them onto the door and body. (pic of adhesive in case you're curious)

Best part about the most recent mods is total cost was less than $20 with lots of improvement. Next mod on the list is the 5th Airborne king pin that will be delivered in about a week!! Sadly, that mod was a bit more than $20.
Nice improvements indeed. My hubby will definitely be doing the magnet thing. We too have the fk and was wondering how you adjusted to no pantry? My hubby hates having to get on his knees to access the center bottom cabinet. Also, have you any thoughts on replacing the booth in the kitchen with a table and chairs? More cabinet space would be nice since we are ft.
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Old 07-21-2019, 04:51 PM   #17
Janine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamlej View Post
Love some of your mods and will definitely try them on our 3820FK. Our favorite mod was adding the ceiling fan in the bedroom. We have scaled our trailer several times and found the numbers exceeded the capability of our F250. Although I didnít have any issues with the SRW pulling the trailer I opted to step up to the F350 DRW for my piece of mind and safety issues. The pin weight is just a tad under 3K.
I like that ceiling fan in the bdrm. Howd you wire it? And is that some sort of box around the base? The pic is to dark to tell.
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Old 07-22-2019, 06:08 AM   #18
BandBmalin
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When it rains, it pours...lol. I appreciate all the comments and questions and love to dialogue with other 3820FK folks!! Okay, here we go everyone:

Allenclme: I only have the two, round, air discharge vents in my living room and both are located roughly centered over my opposing couches. Those are the two vents I pulled off. (They just snap on/off so that was easy.) I didn't do any cutting, just pulled them down and left them off. As for my pool noodles, I'm simply stopping any air from going past the last duct in the line. It dead ends at the nose of the trailer so by adding an artificial stopping point, I'm avoiding the wasted duct work in the front and increasing my airflow at the last one. I've added a diagram of what I did below to help anyone else interested in trying it. I can't claim ownership for the idea as I learned about it while reading other forums with my last trailer. I can say with confidence that it really works however!! (...and is REALLY inexpensive and easy to do!)

Hamlej: Like others, I love the ceiling fan idea too!! Was looking at your weight ticket and you're heavier than me by a pretty good margin. Do you have the washer/dryer in yours? I pulled mine with a 2500 dodge gasoline Hemi for about 6 months local and although it could handle it, my F350 SRW does it much more confidently. My truck still spends a lot of time sitting at the airport parking garage as I travel for work and I can't see trying to park a DRW there every week. Maybe when I retire, I'll go dually? I'll know more after next summer as we're planning a trip from FL to Seattle. That'll be a really solid test of SRW for sure!!

Jimw@columbus...: Which door are you referring to for the magnets? The front door hits the awning rail when open. So far, living in FL, we keep our doors closed all of the time except when loading/unloading and the friction hinge seems to hold it open for us.

Jstadler: If you have any more questions about my "pool noodle placement" after looking at my diagram, please reach out. It is such a cheap and effective aid for air flow, I want to be sure you can do it if you want to.

D&PMac: I like the piano hinge idea. My wife has turned the lower cabinet into her makeup area, but has to squeeze in between the bed and the cabinets. Swapping out the trailer king size mattress for a residential queen size and cutting the plywood support down accordingly has helped, but I'll have to suggest your hinge idea to her. How are you keeping it shut when you're not using it? Can you post a pic or two for me?

Janine: The lack of pantry hasn't really affected us too much. Our past travel trailers never really had much food storage so for us, the only real change was that it is a bit lower than in the past. I'm not a fan of the height, but the extra counter space is a perk and the trade-off we like. We keep a 5-gallon water bottle on that counter with a battery pump and that is all of our cooking/drinking water. Plus, we don't FT so our food/spice/staples storage is pretty minimal overall when compared to our stick home.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Pool Noodle in Air Duct.pdf (122.4 KB, 63 views)
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Old 07-22-2019, 06:12 AM   #19
BandBmalin
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Janine,
We like the booth up front and can squeeze a bunch around it. We are going to get 2 folding stools so we can seat 2 more in front of the refrigerator when we have a larger group with us. Although tight, we had oldest daughter and her family camping with us a couple of weekends ago and we fit 6 (okay, 2 of them are aged 5 and 3) around the booth. If you decide to change yours out, I would be curious to see the process and what is under and behind the booth. I've debated adding some underseat storage up front as all of our other trailers used this space for storage and Montana doesn't on the 3820FKs that I've seen so far.
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Old 07-22-2019, 07:49 AM   #20
Hamlej
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BandBmalin, yes we have the stackable Splendide washer and dryer plus a solar system on the roof. I understand not wanting to use a DRW around town and it would be next to impossible to park one in an airport garage. I thought of downsizing our king to a queen and I would also need to extend our platform as well as trimming the sides. Our platform it is about a foot to short.
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