Oliver Legacy Elite II solar upgrade? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-25-2017, 09:13 PM   #1
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Oliver Legacy Elite II solar upgrade?

I'm researching the Oliver elite II trailer and was wondering if owners that have the upgraded 320 watt solar system are happy with its performance? I would also like to know if lithium batteries are an option, and if not why?

Thank you!
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Old 01-25-2017, 10:40 PM   #2
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I don't have the solar option on my Elite ll, but I can tell you that lithium batteries are not an option from Oliver.

Part of wether someone is happy with their solar option depends on their willingness to always park in the sun and being willing to regularly clean the horizontal collectors. Collector output is directly related to the orientation angle and flat is never the optimum angle.

Point is: Be careful with your expectations that may be based on rated output. They may be perfectly adequate for some and disappointing for others.
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Old 01-26-2017, 01:38 PM   #3
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A 320 watt solar system is a lot of power. I use a 100 watt system all summer with absolutely no problems but that will depend entirely on your power consumption.
Lithium batteries are fantastic but only if you have the right system for their application, otherwise you shouldn't use them.
As previously stated, max power is only sustained if your panels are oriented directly towards the sun which requires constant adjustment as the sum moves across the sky. If you calculate you power needs and double it, you can leave your panels flat on your roof and get sufficient energy.
Also, dust accumulation on the solar panels reduces the amount of light penetration and thus power output.
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Old 01-26-2017, 04:12 PM   #4
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Thanks guys for responding. Tomorrow I get to check out a Oliver and can't wait!
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Old 01-26-2017, 08:05 PM   #5
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I have the Oliver Elite II and have been traveling in it for 14 months from Canada to most points in the west. I have the 320 on the roof and have boondocked quite q few times. I have been without shore power for 7 days and probably could have stayed out more. We have an inverter to run the coffee pot and you can use the micro if its short. Its great but the issue becomes water after 3-4 days more than power. We love the Ollie we have put it through hoops.
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Old 01-26-2017, 09:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bertus65 View Post
I have the Oliver Elite II and have been traveling in it for 14 months from Canada to most points in the west. I have the 320 on the roof and have boondocked quite q few times. I have been without shore power for 7 days and probably could have stayed out more. We have an inverter to run the coffee pot and you can use the micro if its short. Its great but the issue becomes water after 3-4 days more than power. We love the Ollie we have put it through hoops.
That is awesome Bertus65! I do have a couple of honda 2000's I think would help out on those cloudy days when solar is not that great. I can see that water management would be key for extended boondocking. I could stay away from people for a long time but my wife not so much. We will compromise our trips and balance out our time as far as boondocking and rv sites.

Thank you!
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Old 01-26-2017, 11:28 PM   #7
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Good luck with the Oliver!
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Old 01-28-2017, 11:41 PM   #8
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Thanks Mike! My wife and I were very impressed of the quality of the Oliver trailer. The outdoor temp was in the mid 40's and with just a small space heater the owners had the indoor temp very comfortable.
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Old 01-29-2017, 04:46 AM   #9
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Geo777,

I have the 320W solar panels, 4 AGM batteries, inverter and optional street side awning. As a group of options, they allow me to dry camp in sunny locations without the need to run the AC. I have camped for one season in state and national parks without ever needing shore power. I have no generator.


It does require a working knowledge of the solar controller and solar monitor especially if your campsite is in deep shade. I have had no problems with dirty panels or the angle of the panels. Oliver Travel Trailer uses a PV array from Zamp Solar and they work well.


Keep in mind, the combination of options listed above are not cheap. If you think most of the time you will be plugged into shore power or using a generator, the solar components would be a pricy option without a great return on investment. On the other hand, if you plan to dry camp most of the time, it is a sweet setup.


An Ollie also has s special function called the EZ Winterization which can be used to easily replenish your fresh water supply without the need to break camp if you have access to a water spigot somewhere within the campground. When you combine that system with an RV tote tank for emptying your black/grey tanks, you can be a happy dry camper for weeks!



Buzzy
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Old 01-29-2017, 12:46 PM   #10
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Camping isn't cheap and hasn't been since I used a tent and sleeping bag but I enjoy it so much I consider it "good value" for the money I spend. I have been "boondocking" about 60 days/year for a lot of years. Now that I'm retired that will double. I carry a generator "just in case" but I've only used it once and it was expensive! $25 a day for fuel. Solar was expensive to buy but has paid for itself many times over and I don't have to source and pay for fuel.
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Old 01-29-2017, 07:36 PM   #11
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Thank you very much Buzzy for that great info. I've noticed many people get price mixed up with quality and normally place price in front of value. Your insight was well taken and I've enjoyed how well you've put together youtube videos.
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Old 01-29-2017, 07:40 PM   #12
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Like you Mike I'm also retired and never traveled this great land. I'm planning on doing quiet a bit of boondocking and see the value in solar. Thank you for taking time to respond and happy trails!
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Old 01-29-2017, 10:39 PM   #13
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Geo, enjoy your travels!
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Old 02-01-2017, 06:52 AM   #14
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Geo777,


It is good to hear you are considering boondocking. In many ways, an Ollie is particularly suited to boondocking as well as off-season and solo camping. The solar option will help provide electric power and the EZ Winterizing will facilitate replenishing your fresh water. Both are helpful during extended boondocking trips. For off-season camping it is good to have a well-insulated camper, an Ollie meets that requirement. Sometimes life’s journey can take a turn where we do not have a co-pilot to help navigate our RV camping activities. Luckily, an Ollie is perfectly suited in both size and options to facilitate solo camping. I guess an Ollie has many capabilities to adapt to varying camping styles over the course of a decade or more. For me, it is nice to know I can change camping styles as needs arise and my Ollie will easily adapt.


Buzzy
PS - Thank you for viewing my YouTube videos.
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