Hybrid Car as Generator - Fiberglass RV


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 05-17-2013, 12:55 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Name: Ken
Trailer: Scamp
Pennsylvania
Posts: 20
Hybrid Car as Generator

It's starting to warm up here, and I've been reading all the suggestions about having A/C in the summer. Okay, my 1991 Scamp 16' has an air conditioner. But most state parks here don't have electric hookups, and I'd hate to carry a generator for noise, weight, and bulk.

But wait... I'm towing this with a Prius! It makes an amazing power supply - super efficient (only running when the 220v batteries need refilling) and super quiet. The Scamp A/C seems to draw about 600W when the compressor runs, and 100w with the fan - peak is high but short.

http://www.aprs.org/FD-Prius-Power.html

And they tested it with an electric heater. Lots of detail at:
Prius - UPS Project

I'd like to clamp a 1000W inverter on my Scamp battery terminals, and run an extension cord inside for the A/C. I believe this will draw current from the Prius battery and the Scamp battery simultaneously. I've got the charge line and ground of the 7 way connector wired to my Prius 12V battery. The URL above says the Prius can deliver 100A @ 12V, so I imagine I can get 50 Amps from this line, and let the remainder of what the Prius decides to supply go into the battery as it would anyway.

Is this about to blow anything up? Do I need to connect it directly to the battery? Is this a bad plan overall?

Also: when I can't have the Prius there at all, what will happen if I run the A/C briefly (just to cool it down) off the Deep Cycle battery alone? I've read suggestions to not completely discharge it. What happens if I do?

Thanks!
__________________

__________________
Ken in Philly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 01:28 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,314
Registry
Ken,

You may be able to get 100A from the Prius, but your 7 way connector will not carry that much current. You should either run #2 wires to your trailer, or put an inverter in your Prius and run an extension cord from that to your trailer.
The battery in your scamp would have a maximum of 130 A hrs, it may be half of that. You should not use more then half of that. so 65 A hrs, (or 40 A hrs). At 600W, that would be a minimum of 50 A. So you should be good for about an hour, (or half an hr) of air.

Potential problems:
Starting current on AC is at least double running current, so you require at least a 1500W inverter.
Inverters are not 100% efficient, so it will draw on the order of 10% more then it supplies.
Your battery may not want to supply 50A for an hour. I would monitor the temperature of the battery.
__________________

__________________
David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 01:47 PM   #3
Junior Member
 
Name: Ken
Trailer: Scamp
Pennsylvania
Posts: 20
An hour of A/C should be plenty for cooling the place down. Thanks for confirming my hope there.

I'll put the inverter at the Prius end instead of the camper end, and run the extension cord from there. Makes sense.

Thanks!
__________________
Ken in Philly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 02:07 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Thomas G.'s Avatar
 
Name: Kinga DeRode
Trailer: For Sale Or Rent
Rooms to Let 50 Cents
Posts: 5,103
I'd suspect that your problems will come from starting the AC on the inverter. You will need a big inverter and may need true sine vs modified sine output. (More $$$). I would also fuse the input from the Prius' DC-DC converter so that you don't accidentally blow that out, as they are very expensive. The Prius 12 volt battery is small, so you might want to add an additional battery next to it, or connect the Scamp battery with very large cables, as has been suggested.
__________________
UHaul and Burro owners, join the UHaul Campers on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/529276933859491/
Thomas G. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 02:27 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
rabbit's Avatar
 
Name: Jack
Trailer: '98 BURRO 17WB
Delaware
Posts: 2,548
30k$ generator for "emergency" HVAC? Heart be still!

jack
__________________
rabbit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 02:37 PM   #6
Senior Member
 
Thomas G.'s Avatar
 
Name: Kinga DeRode
Trailer: For Sale Or Rent
Rooms to Let 50 Cents
Posts: 5,103
Quote:
Originally Posted by rabbit View Post
30k$ generator for "emergency" HVAC? Heart be still!

jack
Be nice Jack. You know that you are a tinkerer at heart.
__________________
UHaul and Burro owners, join the UHaul Campers on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/529276933859491/
Thomas G. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 03:03 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Francesca Knowles's Avatar
 
Name: Francesca Knowles
Trailer: '78 Trillium 4500
Jefferson County, Washington State, U.S.A.
Posts: 4,543
Registry
Are the Prius batteries recharged in this scenario by the gas engine, and if so, how does this differ from any other tug-to-trailer power transfer????

Francesca
__________________
.................................
Propane Facts vs. Fiction:. Click here
Tow Limit Calculator: Click here
Francesca Knowles is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 03:12 PM   #8
Senior Member
 
Jon Vermilye's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2017 Escape 21
Oswego, NY
Posts: 1,406
Registry
I've been impressed by the fuel cell developed by Chevy. According to their engineers that attended the New York State Fair a couple of years ago, it was the size of a breadbox & developed 100KW. Now, if you could get it to run on propane, and get the cost under what they were paying ($1,000,000.00 each) that would power your AC and then some!
Jon Vermilye is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 05:30 PM   #9
Senior Member
 
David Tilston's Avatar
 
Name: Dave W
Trailer: Trillium 4500 - 1977, 1978 (2), 1300 - 1977, 1973, and a 1972
Alberta
Posts: 5,314
Registry
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon Vermilye View Post
I've been impressed by the fuel cell developed by Chevy. According to their engineers that attended the New York State Fair a couple of years ago, it was the size of a breadbox & developed 100KW. Now, if you could get it to run on propane, and get the cost under what they were paying ($1,000,000.00 each) that would power your AC and then some!
Enough for ~100hp. No more heavy batteries in hybrids. $1,000,000? what is it made of?
__________________
David Tilston is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 05:47 PM   #10
Senior Member
 
Jon Vermilye's Avatar
 
Name: Jon
Trailer: 2017 Escape 21
Oswego, NY
Posts: 1,406
Registry
I don't know, but it is impressive. Biggest problem (other than the cost) is that it requires hydrogen to operate - both finding the stuff & storing it in the vehicle are problems. Still, an incredible amount of power in a small package. I'm sure the carbon in propane would poison the cell & I'm not sure I want a hydrogen based fuel system for a trailer!

Chevy built 100 Equinox SUVs that combined the fuel cell & Nickel Hydride batteries in 2008, but I haven't seem much about the technology lately.

It would make an interesting tow vehicle if the range could be improved. With a 120V tap for the trailer it could supply all the energy needed for everything.
Jon Vermilye is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 07:57 PM   #11
Senior Member
 
LeonardS's Avatar
 
Name: Leonard
Trailer: not yet
California
Posts: 151
Thomas G, don't you tow with a Hybrid? Are you the one that has a battery hookup from the tug to the trailer, tapping into the big battery bank? Or is that someone else?

Just curious, if it is you, did you use a DC/DC converter to lower the voltage before passing it back to the trailer, or did you do the conversion there?
__________________
LeonardS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 08:31 PM   #12
Senior Member
 
Thomas G.'s Avatar
 
Name: Kinga DeRode
Trailer: For Sale Or Rent
Rooms to Let 50 Cents
Posts: 5,103
Quote:
Originally Posted by LeonardS
Thomas G, don't you tow with a Hybrid? Are you the one that has a battery hookup from the tug to the trailer, tapping into the big battery bank? Or is that someone else?

Just curious, if it is you, did you use a DC/DC converter to lower the voltage before passing it back to the trailer, or did you do the conversion there?
Hybrids use a dc-dc converter in place of a 12volt alternator. So I simply tapped off the 12 volt battery. The dc-dc converter provides about 110 amps at 12 volts in the Escape. I've seen installations where the traction battery is tapped with a 330 volt to 120 volt dc-ac converter to provide much more power. This allows you to use the full power of the generator - about 15,000 watts.
__________________
UHaul and Burro owners, join the UHaul Campers on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/529276933859491/
Thomas G. is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 05-17-2013, 09:40 PM   #13
Senior Member
 
Brian B-P's Avatar
 
Name: Brian
Trailer: Boler (B1700RGH) 1979
Alberta
Posts: 5,000
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas G. View Post
I've seen installations where the traction battery is tapped with a 330 volt to 120 volt dc-ac converter to provide much more power.
For high power demand (such as for an air conditioner), this makes vastly more sense to me than converting 220 V DC to 12 V DC, and then converting again to 120 V AC... and running about a hundred amps at the 12 V DC stage while pushing the limits of the car's DC-DC converter. This assumes, of course, that one can find an inverter that will run on that input voltage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thomas G. View Post
This allows you to use the full power of the generator - about 15,000 watts.
The inverter would still be a limiting factor, of course, and 3600 watts might be a sensible size (fully powering a 30 amp RV shore power connection) - no need to handle the whole 15 kW MG1 output.
__________________
1979 Boler B1700RGH, pulled by 2004 Toyota Sienna LE 2WD
Information is good. Lack of information is not so good, but misinformation is much worse. Check facts, and apply common sense liberally.
STATUS: No longer active in forum.
Brian B-P is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-18-2013, 07:50 AM   #14
Senior Member
 
Thomas G.'s Avatar
 
Name: Kinga DeRode
Trailer: For Sale Or Rent
Rooms to Let 50 Cents
Posts: 5,103
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian B-P View Post
.............
The inverter would still be a limiting factor, of course, and 3600 watts might be a sensible size (fully powering a 30 amp RV shore power connection) - no need to handle the whole 15 kW MG1 output.
Right. The conversion I read about was a salvaged industrial inverter. I can't imagine the cost, or even the source of a new one.
__________________

__________________
UHaul and Burro owners, join the UHaul Campers on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/529276933859491/
Thomas G. is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
generator


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New Ford Hybrid, is it a TV? Garycamper Towing, Hitching, Axles and Running Gear 28 09-23-2012 08:02 AM
Anybody tow with a hybrid? Deb H Towing, Hitching, Axles and Running Gear 17 05-05-2009 08:25 PM
Generator vs Car Daniel V. General Chat 35 03-10-2009 12:17 AM
Border Bike Rally (& Car Show), Bike & Car Weekend event (ON S John J. M Rallies, Get-togethers, Molded Meets (Archive) 1 06-07-2008 07:28 AM
In the realm of hybrid RV Parks Gina D. Camping, Campout Reports 6 12-16-2006 07:07 PM

» Upcoming Events
No events scheduled in
the next 465 days.
» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:17 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.