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Old 03-11-2021, 03:44 PM   #1
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Name: Cheesehead
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Scamp Solar

I have a 2014 Scamp Deluxe and want to add portable solar for boon-docking. Iíve looked at briefcase options. Does anyone have any experience with this? Who makes the best product? What wattage works best? Thanks!
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Old 03-11-2021, 04:20 PM   #2
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... What wattage works best?
The wattage that allows you to use the electrical items that you want, for the length of time that you want, with enough battery to continue doing that at night and for the days when there is not sufficient sun.
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Old 03-11-2021, 04:23 PM   #3
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The wattage that allows you to use the electrical items that you want, for the length of time that you want, with enough battery to continue doing that at night and for the days when there is not sufficient sun.
If you dont want to do the math and plan on summer camping with average weather, light use of electrical items, then 100 watts is a good place to start. But without knowing a whole lot more, that could be very far from what you would be happy with.
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Old 03-11-2021, 04:59 PM   #4
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Thanks Gordon. I mainly need to charge the battery for charging my CPAP and interior lights. Iíve got a microwave but donít thinking will work off of 12V
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Old 03-11-2021, 07:37 PM   #5
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Thanks Gordon. I mainly need to charge the battery for charging my CPAP and interior lights. Iíve got a microwave but donít thinking will work off of 12V
Anything (almost) is possible but a RV's microwave on battery power is not practical.

Be sure the lights are LED.

Figure out the power use of the CPAP as that will be your primary electrical load, and also a priority. Then you can figure how many watts you need to produce and store. Don't neglect the storing part.. the battery. Multiple days of little power from solar panels is not uncommon. Others have said that not using the humidifier option will use less power, and I think there are 12 volt DC CPAPs that would be better than trying to use a 120 VAC one with an inverter.. or perhaps that is what you have already.
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Old 03-11-2021, 08:48 PM   #6
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Solar doesn't replace shore power, it supplements minor uses on a camper. So the litany of fine 120V appliances is usually out. Batteries also have a role, both to handle the hours per day when the sun isn't out and cloudy days too.

Optimizing/reducing your use is important, through LED lighting, CPAP strategy (reducing the load, maybe a different unit) and more.

It's a great opportunity for some driveway camping tests. Disconnect your shore power and spend some time in the camper, including nighttime. See how it goes. Solar is getting cheaper, if I were to do it now, I'd go with a 200W panel instead of my 100W panel. But I do not have a CPAP, all of my lighting is LED, I don't run any electric appliances. So in the end, the 100W suitcase panel has met my needs.

When I make coffee, I pull out my stove top percolator and fire up the propane stove. Other than LED lighting, I am using 12V water pump, and whatever 12V is required when my fridge is on propane.

I am watching lithium batteries slowly go down in price. That may be my next spend. My current batteries are relatively new, so I will wait until replacement time.

Now I did meet a guy with 1600 watts of solar on his small camper (half of it was on the ground). In that case, it did pretty much substitute for shore power. He also had a sizable bank of lithium batteries. He may well have had a Scamp 13 type of investment in solar + batteries + high efficiency appliances (like a mini-split heat pump).
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Old 03-11-2021, 09:14 PM   #7
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I wonder if you could convince AAA or Good Sam to come and jump your trailer?
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Old 03-11-2021, 11:45 PM   #8
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Name: Lynn
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Electric use 101: The average fully charged group 27 battery can deliver about 600 watt/hours of power before it needs recharging. That's 50 watts for twelve hours, 300 watts for two hours, etc. A 100 watt solar panel would need more than 6 hours to replace that power. It takes longer to put it back than to take it out. Figure out your needs and do the math to determine the equipment needed.
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