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Old 01-13-2018, 11:58 AM   #1
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21' Exterior access hatch questions

I have two questions concerning the option of the exterior access hatch on a new 21' Escape:

1) Is this a useful addition?

2) Is one side (rear driver side or rear passenger side) superior?

thanks
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:06 PM   #2
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The stock is driver side, front, under the bed. Anything else is optional and if you study the layout, between batteries and converter and other components, your locations are limited.
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:16 PM   #3
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Are the dual 6 volt batteries not located in the storage box on the 21'?
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:21 PM   #4
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Are the dual 6 volt batteries not located in the storage box on the 21'?
No, they are located inside, on the curb side under the dinette. The converter is on the opposite side where the power and water hook ups are. So your dinette space is limited.
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:28 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Bob in Bend View Post
Are the dual 6 volt batteries not located in the storage box on the 21'?
No, in back. If you get the "U" shaped dinette , the battery case is in the passenger side of the added rear bench seat. Not sure, but I believe the batteries are under the passenger rear bench seat when you get the standard dinette.

I did add an external hatch to the rear passenger side, but have the "U" shaped dinette, so the only thing that takes up space in the area under the passenger side sheet is the inverter.
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Old 01-13-2018, 12:39 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob in Bend View Post
I have two questions concerning the option of the exterior access hatch on a new 21' Escape:

1) Is this a useful addition?

2) Is one side (rear driver side or rear passenger side) superior?

thanks
Bob in Bend
Hi Bob, I don't speak from experience as I don't yet have my Escape 21 so take my opinion far more lightly than that of a current Escape owner. We have added two additional rear exterior hatches to our build sheet on our 21. We will have the U-Shaped dinette which would seem to make rear access hatches more useful. If we were getting the standard dinette we probably would have just stuck with the standard front hatch. Our thought is the more access we have to our storage the better. We realize the storage area and access is somewhat limited. However, we have plenty of items that we would like to be able to get to from the outside that are not large items (extension cords, etc.) Before making our decision I read several posts from 21 owners that were happy they got the additional hatches. I don't remember seeing any post from owners who regretting getting the additional hatches.
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Old 01-13-2018, 01:17 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by matt View Post
Hi Bob, I don't speak from experience as I don't yet have my Escape 21 so take my opinion far more lightly than that of a current Escape owner. We have added two additional rear exterior hatches to our build sheet on our 21. We will have the U-Shaped dinette which would seem to make rear access hatches more useful. If we were getting the standard dinette we probably would have just stuck with the standard front hatch. Our thought is the more access we have to our storage the better. We realize the storage area and access is somewhat limited. However, we have plenty of items that we would like to be able to get to from the outside that are not large items (extension cords, etc.) Before making our decision I read several posts from 21 owners that were happy they got the additional hatches. I don't remember seeing any post from owners who regretting getting the additional hatches.
Be sure and communicate your wishes with ETI, I requested that nothing be installed in the rear of the "U" area, otherwise they were going to install the converter in the rear. So I had a fairly large rear storage in my 21. You may want to rearrange the needed components and communicate your desires with ETI.
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Old 01-13-2018, 01:20 PM   #8
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We are getting the standard dinette. With this in mind, how could we best utilize an additional exterior hatch on the rear driver side?
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Old 01-13-2018, 02:53 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Bob in Bend View Post
We are getting the standard dinette. With this in mind, how could we best utilize an additional exterior hatch on the rear driver side?
Bob, we have the drivers side rear hatch and find it very useful. Since your 30 Amp service, water, and cable are all on this side of the trailer, we keep our White Hose, 30 Amp Cord, and Television Cable in this hatch. Makes for very convenient hookups. We did not get the outside hatch on the passenger side, and therefore have only access from inside bench seat. We don’t access it often and tend to store supplies such as extra TP, paper towels, and water filters in this area.
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Old 01-13-2018, 05:32 PM   #10
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We have a 2017 21' and ordered the optional driver side rear hatch instead of a utility box on the tongue. The hatch gives us outside access to the 12V DC water pump, the winterizing T-valve and major electrical components. It also gives us storage space for wheel chocks, stabilizer pads, power cords and adaptors, etc.
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Old 01-13-2018, 05:41 PM   #11
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Also, we did not add an outside access hatch to the rear passenger side but instead have fitted several various-sized storage containers (not shown) in and around the framing for items we might need but immediate or repeated access is not a priority.
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Old 01-13-2018, 06:07 PM   #12
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Looks good. I think I will include this as an option. Thanks everyone for the input. What a great forum.
Bob in Bend
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Old 01-13-2018, 07:38 PM   #13
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On my 19 I find the exterior hatch to be very handy. Would definetly recommend it.
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Old 03-11-2018, 07:20 PM   #14
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Still thinking on this one myself.

What is the experience out there regarding dust intrusion when on gravel roads? If another hatch means another storage area that gets filthy with dust, I may do without.
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Old 03-11-2018, 08:01 PM   #15
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Still thinking on this one myself. What is the experience out there regarding dust intrusion when on gravel roads? If another hatch means another storage area that gets filthy with dust, I may do without.
While I've not spent much time on dry, dusty roads, other than our 1/4 mile dirt driveway, if either of our two hatch doors started leaking dust, I can't help but think there is a plethora (I couldn't resist using that word) of door sealing solutions at our local big box hardware stores. I believe the pros of our extra hatch (front driver side) far outweigh any potential cons.
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Old 03-11-2018, 08:47 PM   #16
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Still thinking on this one myself.

What is the experience out there regarding dust intrusion when on gravel roads? If another hatch means another storage area that gets filthy with dust, I may do without.
After traveling some gravel roads in Alaska, I didn’t find much dust, so I’d say it seals not bad to pretty good. I track in more than leaks in....

I have the outside hatch and it seals as well as or better than the windows.

I’d recommend it.
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Old 03-12-2018, 11:04 AM   #17
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Hi Jon,

On your 2017 21 with the U-shaped dinette, you say that your inverter is under the rear passenger side settee. Is this the standard layout for the current 21's? I assume that your converter must be under the driver's side settee. Do you know why both inverter and converter were not both put in the same space? It seems to me that keeping one of the storage areas uncluttered with electrical gear would be preferable.

While I am on the topic of the electrical setup, did ETI include a fuse on the main battery output of your dual 6v batteries?
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Old 03-12-2018, 11:07 AM   #18
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Thanks for the feedback War Eagle and MoaBoy, much appreciated. I think I will add at least one extra hatch.
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Old 03-12-2018, 12:47 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanEdie View Post
Hi Jon,

On your 2017 21 with the U-shaped dinette, you say that your inverter is under the rear passenger side settee. Is this the standard layout for the current 21's? I assume that your converter must be under the driver's side settee. Do you know why both inverter and converter were not both put in the same space? It seems to me that keeping one of the storage areas uncluttered with electrical gear would be preferable.
In the U-Shaped Dinette, Allen, the inverter and converter are both under the rear bench. The “remote switch” for the inverter is on the side of the passenger side bench. In this photo, looking down into the p/s bench, the remote switch is the small black box on the left. It is high and mostly out of the way:
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Old 03-12-2018, 03:06 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanEdie View Post
Hi Jon,

On your 2017 21 with the U-shaped dinette, you say that your inverter is under the rear passenger side settee. Is this the standard layout for the current 21's?
I assume that your converter must be under the driver's side settee. Do you know why both inverter and converter were not both put in the same space? It seems to me that keeping one of the storage areas uncluttered with electrical gear would be preferable.

While I am on the topic of the electrical setup, did ETI include a fuse on the main battery output of your dual 6v batteries?
I don't know if they are still using the same locations, but since the battery box is only about 6" from the inverter, the locations of both make sense. While technically different storage areas, they are open to each other. The inverter is mounted on the back of the storage area facing, so it doesn't take up all that much of the storage area. You can see the inverter, battery box and my added shunt for the battery monitor here:


There is a 30 amp breaker between the batteries & the converter, and a 200 amp? (I think) fuse between the batteries & the inverter.
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