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RE: What to use to level trailer while parked

Good for quick getaways too. Like if someone is shooting at you. Don't even need to pickup the blocks. :B
bpounds 08/17/20 05:24pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: What to use to level trailer while parked

IS that for side to side leveling OR Front to Rear Leveling ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Me? I use it for side to side. I tow level, so rarely ever any need to use them that way, but I have maybe once when I parked in a lot with just a little slope. Normally I would do exactly what you said, pull the pin and drive forward a foot, then just level with the landing gear. But, cannot do that if stealing 40 winks in a parking lot.
bpounds 08/17/20 03:51pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: What to use to level trailer while parked

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/ACtC-3fgp2HU98oRPZxoIU5O9EkFYc9iKBU28rXDuSKydLSNl1Qih4sDMeXPK8jcolGM-5d1R0B5fEkCmpKo4njlta2GizQa5Qjzu0BkqCBYyzQGsFfXqjuc9dn6aKhpPhDLNWSIveIQxnc_Q5j6GluPVpV6=w1091-h818-no?authuser=0 width=640
bpounds 08/17/20 02:43pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: Setting up my solar system

Looks great. I'm a bit jealous of how much space you've got to work with. But I do like having my roof vents too. I used the same Renogy Zee clips. They seemed fine to me, but the one downside I saw was that it is pretty much impossible to remove a panel from the clips. Can't get to the bolts. Or, you have to pull them up from the roof and tear through the Dicor. If I do have to remove a panel, I won't do either of those. I will just saw through the clips, leaving the lower 'L' portion at the roof, and improvise a different upper portion. Assuming the new panel was the exact same width. It's enough of a long shot idea that I didn't put too much worry on it.
bpounds 08/17/20 08:56am Tech Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

I had mixed results using a stud finder, but a neodymium magnet found them easily and reliably. This was a trussed roof with rubber overlayment. Unfortunately mine is stick framed. As far as I know there are no metal roof beams that I'm aware of. Grey Wolf 22MKSE Mine is wood frame roof too. Truss refers to wood construction. The magnet finds the staples or screws that secure the sheathing to the trusses (rafters if you prefer).
bpounds 08/12/20 03:04pm Tech Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

I've got a 96" x 115" area forward of the air conditioner... Wow, I never would have guessed that. Never seen that much non-penetrated space. Two of those panels will be sweet.
bpounds 08/12/20 01:28pm Tech Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

I had mixed results using a stud finder, but a neodymium magnet found them easily and reliably. This was a trussed roof with rubber overlayment.
bpounds 08/12/20 01:23pm Tech Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

When I was planning my system, I remember having bold plans before I did a layout of my RV roof. Once I learned how much space I really had to work with, then I started seriously shopping for panels that would work within that space, and how to mount them. So I consider working on a layout very important. Some guys will say to do an energy audit to figure out how much solar you really need. I guess when panels were very expensive it was important to figure out the minimum you needed. Now I don't see that as a particularly important step. We have a lot of shared experiences as to how much solar works in various locations with XYZ battery banks. I think it is much more important to do your roof layout, figure out what you can fit and afford today, and try to layout space for more panels if/when needed. Those 200w 12v panels you are looking at are a bit on the expensive side, at $1.50 per watt, compared to their 100w 12v panels at about $1 per watt. For 800w of panel you would be looking at $1200 for [email protected] 200w, versus $825 for [email protected] 100w. Now, that might well be worth it if the larger 200w fits your available space better than 8 of the smaller 100w. You'll also need fewer jumper cables for 4 panels versus 8. Just as an example of why you need to do a roof layout. There are things up there you really need to avoid, like the A/C shroud (casts a big shadow), vent covers, TV antenna...well a whole bunch of **** up there to avoid.
bpounds 08/08/20 05:53pm Tech Issues
RE: Intergencies passes

That is a weird one, since you didn't already pay for the 4th. You paid for the night of the 3rd. You did, right? That system is full of bugs, even more so since the last, er, upgrade. And they have not handled the pandemic well either.
bpounds 08/07/20 02:51pm Public Lands, Boondocking and Dry Camping
RE: What do you shut off when leaving for a trip

We just turn off the HVAC. But our climate is mild, so there is no danger of freezing pipes ever. Water has to stay on unless during winter, to keep the lawn sprinklers working. Not on a well, so no pump to deal with. I would like to save water heater cost (natural gas), but I think I've only done that once. The water heater stats are so finicky that I am reluctant to mess with the control. Anyway, the gas used is a tiny cost when no hot water is being used. I do have the valve necessary to leave irrigation on and house water off. You've got me thinking that I should do that. Blown washing machine or dishwasher hoses would be the main concern, and a huge mess if it happened.
bpounds 08/07/20 02:41pm General RVing Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

Also to add, I run 400w of solar and my battery bank is only [email protected] 6vdc 230ah batteries. So roughly half as much battery capacity, and about the same solar versus battery ratio as you are considering. And I find that ratio to be a generous charge capacity. I think you are going to love that system sizing.
bpounds 08/07/20 02:32pm Tech Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

Does this look like the Renogy 200w you are considering? If so, these are 12v panels, and they DO have bypass diodes. Diodes are pretty much SOP these days. I can see 4 of these fitting on your trailer. If you are looking at 24v panels, I'm not sure how you are going to fit them on a 26.4" travel trailer. That's the downfall of 24v on RV's. 24v panels are great if you can fit them with reasonable effort. Didn't work out for me, but it does on some rigs. Amazon Renogy 200w 12v Mono-C
bpounds 08/07/20 02:24pm Tech Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

I wouldn't worry too much about whether P-P-P-P, or S-S x P-P is better in shade. The truth is that shade patterns on panels is too variable and too unpredictable to mean anything. Shade is bad, avoid it. Instead, think more about low angles of sunlight during morning and evening hours. An MPPT controller is ideal for harvesting those extra fringe hours. With some portion of your array in series, the voltage hitting your controller will be higher than battery voltage for more of the day, than it would be with all in parallel. That's with 12v panels. 24v panels are better for the same reason. I don't recall if you said which panel voltage you were going to use. I kinda figured they would be 12v since you were getting 4 of them up there, but might be a bad assumption on my part.
bpounds 08/07/20 02:06pm Tech Issues
RE: Where to put generator in 21' travel trailer

One other thought...don't assume that a receiver has to be in the center of the rear bumper. You won't be towing with it, right? It can be better built if you place it right at the end of a frame rail. You can add a second one on the other side too if you want, maybe for bikes or some jugs of water. You're into customer welding anyway. And some of those thin bumpers fail not at the weld to the frame, but right in the center due to repetitive twisting of the 4" tubing. Frame gussets won't do much for that, but putting the receiver at or near to the frame rail stops the tube twist.
bpounds 08/07/20 11:18am Tech Issues
RE: Setting up my solar system

You're missing an opportunity if you run all 4 panels in parallel. With 4 you will yield a little better if you run 2S x 2P. Your MPPT controller can take better advantage of the higher voltage in all light conditions. You can also downsize some wiring if you choose. No point in having an MPPT if you run them all parallel. No need for any extra breakers IMO, just one to protect, and more importantly to disconnect, the entire array.
bpounds 08/07/20 11:13am Tech Issues
RE: Where to put generator in 21' travel trailer

Such a rack can be built to handle the weight safely. I see them all the time. But before you do, think about this. The generator is going to be much more noticeable when running when it is attached directly to the frame of your trailer. You'll hear it more, and even feel the vibration, compared to sitting the genny on the ground a few feet away. It isn't the distance so much as the direct connection. And where is your bed? In many of those smaller trailers the full size bed is right at the rear. Usually they are too short for a front walk-around bed. Yours might be different. And of course, you can tote the genny there and still sit it on the ground when you want to run it, so it may not be a deal breaker for you. Just something to consider. Also consider where the exhaust is likely to waft, relative to any windows.
bpounds 08/07/20 10:59am Tech Issues
RE: Solar panel extension wires

Without getting into wire sizing, since no one here knows how your layout will run, I found lots of extension length options on Amazon. What I ended up doing was buying just [email protected] 100' extension (cheapest per foot), and a bag of MC4 connectors. Then made all the extensions I needed in exactly the lengths I wanted. Soldered all the connector pins. I didn't bother using the M/F connector on the purchased cable. Trusted my own more.
bpounds 08/05/20 01:40pm Tech Issues
RE: Wheel chocks

I still wonder how the chocks on the ground do work, I guess I wonder what keeps them from slipping on the ground as well. Anyway, does anyone have a picture of their wood chocks? I would like to use some of the wood I have around my house! Thanks, Bill Chocks work because they are a wedge. They can slip on the ground, especially if they are on gravel or other loose base. But if the angle is correct they will lock in pretty good. Some chocks you can purchase have an angle that is too steep in my opinion. Those Harbor Freight chocks are too steep, again in my opinion. And of course the diameter of the tire plays a part too. Those HF chocks are a better fit for semi truck sized tires. I'm sure they work for RV's too, and a good thing about them is that they have a lot of weight to them. I've never purchased chocks, just cut a wedge out of scrap lumber. I carry a couple of different styles, and have had others in the past too. Lately I've been using the ones pictured below. It is sized just right for between my current trailer tires, and it can work in either direction, and if I've mis-judged the slope of the land it will still work within an inch or so in the other direction. I also carry a couple of single wedges. Depending on how bad the slope is on a particular site, I might only chock like below on one side, or I might use this on both sides, and I might even add 1 or 2 of the single chocks if it gets really bad. I've never cared about a little wiggle in the coach, so don't use expanding chocks or pin stands or any of that stuff. Just the rear crank down stabilizers, and for short overnights I might not even deploy those. Even a chunk of firewood makes a decent chock, and I would argue better than X-Chocks, or any of the jack style chocks alone. X-Chock style stop working if you have a tire loose pressure during the night, and your trailer can roll away while you blissfully sleep. Not something I want to trust my life on. https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/pw/ACtC-3c4eSpZ9cT_f5TiBj2tru683ajmVj_oPjcRqsi060ND-YG_KlFBhhmueUxzJihds2-oU3soOOvUcxV4OT3l4NhgLqfIG9UB6Sn492fRdP2AtYttE6keVKFSg8cwvzy6JMG11u1-vDD6Ay9y_BCp-JpS=w1091-h818-no?authuser=0 width=640
bpounds 07/27/20 08:56am Fifth-Wheels
RE: Wheel chocks

I will get yelled at by saying this, but I NEVER chock my fiver UNLESS on an incline which I can recall that may only have happened once where it was to be of concern. The air hitch in the bed will compress before pushing back the RV so no worries there either. With the leveling jacks down and the Steadyfast its not going anywhere. I wouldn't yell at ya. I'm sure you know what you're doing, and you probably camp where things are fairly level. I never chock here on my driveway storage area. For us it is rather rare to have a nice level site to camp, so my habit of chocking before unhitching has served us well. I've had a trailer move enough to roll off the blocks under the tongue jack, and that was WITH chocks behind the wheels. No harm done, unless you count the extra laundry detergent needed to clean my drawers. That also taught me not to stack blocks under tongue jacks or landing gear, but that's a different, even though somewhat related topic.
bpounds 07/25/20 03:29pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: Wheel chocks

I would not say they are a lawsuit waiting to happen. Because as far as I know, every version clearly says in the instructions that they are not to be used as a replacement for wedge chocks. So if you don't use both, it is on you as the user if anything happens.
bpounds 07/25/20 10:31am Fifth-Wheels
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