Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Travel Trailers: 120 days and counting
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#1nobby

Barrie, Ontario

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Posted: 11/06/20 07:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Grit dog wrote:

Nice car and even nicer "cabin"!
Sounds like fun. I've built a house in the woods and a couple highway projects living out of a trailer or camper and it was awesome. Like a long term camping trip!


I think it was more fun when it was 90F back in July. LOL.

Now....more of a challenge.

#1nobby

Barrie, Ontario

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Posted: 11/07/20 07:20am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Finally got out of the woods and onto the driveway.

[image]

98coachman

North Idaho

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Posted: 11/07/20 08:13pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Looking good knobby! What kind of siding are you doing? Bill

#1nobby

Barrie, Ontario

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Posted: 11/09/20 06:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

98coachman wrote:

Looking good knobby! What kind of siding are you doing? Bill


I'll be using Maibec wood siding. Of course, like many things during COVID.....on back order.

https://www.maibec.com/en/wood/products

lane hog

Tucson, AZ & NW Chicago Burbs, IL

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Posted: 11/11/20 12:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Loved reading thru this. I take the same approach of having what I consider adequate solar and it works great for most of our dry camping.

I might need high amperage for 15 minutes a day to run a coffee maker or microwave, or a space heater before bed for an hour. The cost of my generator, and the gas/oil needed to run for that minimal amount of time will never come close to approaching the cost of a higher grade solar setup, lithium batteries, inverters, etc..



  • 2019 Grand Design 29TBS (had a Winnebago and 3x Jayco owner)
  • 2016 F-150 3.5L MaxTow (had Ram 2500 CTD, Dodge Durango)
  • 130W solar and 2005 Honda EU2000i twins that just won't quit



pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

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Posted: 11/11/20 08:51am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

That 15 minutes per day can be provided by just ONE SiO2 battery, a 2000 watt inverter, 400 watts of solar, and a charge controller.

The difference is that the solar may not require any maintenance what so ever. It just works.

Space heating may be better provided by running the furnace that most RV's come with.

* This post was edited 11/11/20 09:13am by pianotuna *


Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp hours of AGM in two battery banks 12 volt batteries, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

mr_andyj

Georgia

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Posted: 11/11/20 11:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Lwiddis wrote:

...
The objective of a solar system is not to need a generator except for AC. The failure of an inadequate solar system is proven by the need to run your generator every day for an hour.


No, but maybe for your particular narrow objectives this is true for you.

The objective of solar power is: Wait for it.... To make power.
Power for what? Wait, wait.... For whatever the guy wants it for.
Wow.

In this case the OP is doing it right. Using solar (economically he spent the minimal amount for his needs) to keep his batteries toped off, and using a generator for the one hour per day (for the few days it is needed) for the big power electrical demands, thus saving his expensive batteries from being delpleted needlessly. Batteries last longer when they are not drained so deeply.
Likely the OPs solar system goes in the garage of the new house when complete and may never see daylight again.

lane hog

Tucson, AZ & NW Chicago Burbs, IL

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Posted: 11/11/20 08:29pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yeah, this is an age old battle. In my opinion, it comes down to some people have a 360 day need for solar but the vast majority have a 30 day need.

In my case, it's under 30 days for high usage, and my generators are a sunk cost. I can't justify paying $500+ for a SiO2 or $1000+ for a LiXXXX battery plus another $500 for additional panels, controller and inverter.

For full-timers who like to be off-grid, it's a great solution. For the weekend warrior and two-week road trippers, it's a nice to have but probably not entirely cost justified.

pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

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Posted: 11/11/20 09:20pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

lane hog,

$450 for SiO2 100 amp-hour.

Solar is great for many storage situations.

lane hog

Tucson, AZ & NW Chicago Burbs, IL

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Posted: 11/12/20 02:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

That's great, Tuna, especially compared to lithiums. But it's still going to be a $1200 investment when you include panels, the inverter and your controller.

To be clear, I've long advocated solar as a great way to reduce our generator or shore power use. It allowed us to do a lot of dry camping that we otherwise wouldn't have experienced.

I've had it on my RV's for 15 years, and encourage others to do it within reason.

Our original $500 investment from 15 years ago is on its third RV, and still does what I expect it to -- charge our batteries and power the 12V system. The biggest benefit I've gotten from it is having our batteries fully charged 365 days a year.

But I also have no expectation that it will replace our generators. Nobody should ever be in a position where they rely on a single source of power. It's too easy for a $4000+ solar system to be brought down by the failure of a single component like your inverter or charger, and that can really destroy a camping trip.

I've lost a charge controller before, and know from experience it's not something you're going to find at the Walmart in Cody, WY or at a truck stop... I got lucky that once I realized it had died, I was able to get a replacement delivered ~48 hours before we left. If we'd have lost the controller on our trip, having the generator would have provided a failover option.

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