Need help new to self build and have ambulance - Motorhome Forums, Motorhome Discussion, Motorhome Chat

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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2019, 13:25 Thread Starter
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Need help new to self build and have ambulance

Hi everyone. Was hoping for some help. My dad has lovingly brought me an old ambulance to concert. But it's already been half decommissioned and badly!
I cannot find a manual anywhere for it to see why on earth it keeps beeping or where wires go and do. Any help would be much needed and appreciated. It's a 2007 mercedes papworth special ambulance.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2019, 14:53
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Hello Yael.
Welcome but not much to go on with your quest. If it's been modified by someone else it's now impossible to guess what goes where. It's going to be the old trial and error system I'm afraid.
So maybe some specific questions and some pics might help.

Ray.

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2019, 15:36
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Is it a sprinter? Owners manuals available here
https://sprintermanual.com/sprinter-library/
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Jean
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2019, 16:22
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You are in for a challenging task.....

ATT Papworth are in liquidation now AFAIK,

https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/c...filing-history

BUT....

You may find an approach to St John Ambulance might help as it is just possible that they may still have a 2007 Mercedes Papworth conversion in their fleet......

The wiring (and plumbing for gas) is complex, yes it is based on the common rail engine but from then on all bets are off. Some were equipped with high capacity batteries and upgraded alternators, others not, some have 230v available at various points, others not at all. So it is VERY difficult to advise without much more detail including pictures.

I used to be a senior officer in SJA and am familiar with many of the quirks having had to repair problems with aspects such as blues and twos not working, suction machine not charging, interior lights or some external ones not working (often NOT a simple blown bulb) and many other quirks.

For fun I completely rebuilt the rear of an ex-service emergency vehicle, which is now happily being used in Kenya having been shipped out for a charity by the RAF on a Herc. It was stuffed before it left the UK !

If I can help I will happily but more details are essential. The Merc was originally designed so that after 5 years the back end could be lifted off and reused, but sadly they were not that good at surviving five years. They were also dreadful underpowered with a top speed of around 65 downhill with a following gale. The blues and twos were routinely switched off on motorways 'cos everything was going past.....
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Remember Jo Cox and what she stood for.

Any comments above are only MY OPINION and should be read as that.

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2019, 20:10 Thread Starter
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[QUOTE=raynipper;3053281]
Sorry new to all of this. It's this (photo attached ) knowing what any of this does. 20191003_125153_1570129568316.jpg20191003_125153_1570129568316.jpg

We have tried to guide our ways
through but the random beeping when it's not connected to power is still an unknown.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 20191003_125208_1570129483054.jpg (432.2 KB, 23 views)
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 03-10-2019, 20:36
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As it is an SWAS (South West Ambulance Service ) design for the vehicle may I suggest a name to contact who might be able to direct you to the maintenance depot (in Taunton) but I would be loath to put the person's name on an open post and because you re not a full member you cannot receive or send Personal Messages......

It would be worth your while going through the full registration so that you are tagged as a Member of MHF and then I can and will send you a name and some contact details. This person is now a VERY senior Officer at the time that I worked for them as a volunteer covering emergencies during such events as the Total Eclipse (1999) and the Millennium night at Exmouth - the person concerned actually brought us two CARRIER BAGS FULL of superb sandwiches cakes and similar things as we were helping them out - enough food to feed the family for three days ! The salmon sandwiches were outstandingly good. But enough of my memories......

The beeping may well indicate that the second battery is not getting a charge - a good place to start........ Sadly it could alternatively be a warning that a door is not fully closed (unreliable switches) or one seat belt is unconnected - so there are a lot of things it COULD be and there is no easy way to identify it. The SWAS depot may well be able to tell you exactly what it is by simply listening to it - they are outstanding vehicle technicians.

Remember Jo Cox and what she stood for.

Any comments above are only MY OPINION and should be read as that.

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Last edited by Penquin; 03-10-2019 at 20:40.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 06:43
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Maybe I'm being daft here, but surely none of this complicated electrics is needed or even desirable on a conversion to MH.

If it was me, I'd be tempted to rip the lot out and start from scratch from the engine/cab.

When travelling, there is much advantage to having a vehicle with simple systems that you can fix yourself.

No better way to know a vehicle intimately than to build it yourself.

And no way would I go boondocking in a MH that looked like those pictures.
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I'm daft and proud of it.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 07:59
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I believe that Yale is sorting out his account so that I can contact him, but the system wil not allow me to send him a PM yet, with the advice that

"he may have chosen not to receive private messages or may not be allowed to"

in other words things aren't quite sorted yet.... I have had a message from him but cannot reply - very frustrating for both of us....

As regards ripping it all out, that may well be much harder than you think as there are numerous complex links due to the demands of a front line vehicle as regards the services it needs in operation, it is also a common rail engine and as such changing things is not quite so straightforward AFAIK.

It is better to ask first and get advice if possible than incur major problems later IMO.

Remember Jo Cox and what she stood for.

Any comments above are only MY OPINION and should be read as that.

http://www.leslezards.co.uk
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 08:43
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I doubt any of the equipment pictured above would, or could have any bearing on the actual operation of the engine, other than possibly a very high output alternator, or possibly even a second alternator to power the additions.

I'd agree with tugboat, if converting to a motorhome I'd start by removing all of the extra electrical equipment and possibly re-use what would be useful in the conversion.
Probably save a few Kgs. as well.

.

John
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 04-10-2019, 11:03
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Hi and welcome toMHF


Before removing anything he has asked for advice wisely, I would direct him to the self-build sites where he will be able to ask for advice from people who have already done the same or similar, I am Pudsey Bear on these too

https://www.diymotorhome.co.uk/

http://motorhomebuilder.com/

The first one may have more users, but the second is also worth joining.

Good luck with your build it is both frustrating and rewarding.
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