Inverter Generators - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-17-2014, 01:59 PM   #1
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Inverter Generators

I'd like to find one for charging batteries and and inflating tires. Any top choices? Thanks in advance.
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Old 09-17-2014, 02:08 PM   #2
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Are you asking about the Honda or Yamaha (and others) lightweight and quiet inverter gennies? I don't have one but want one, even though I can't really justify one. How does the inflating come in, seperate small compressor?
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Old 09-17-2014, 02:52 PM   #3
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You'd be better off using solar to charge batteries and a 12 Volt compressor. Solar panels take up less space than the smallest genset and battery charger (Charging directly is not recommended). And you would still need the small compressor.


FYI after 9 years of extensive camping I've never really needed a compressor when traveling. The one time I needed inflate my trailer tires a handy tire shop took care of it for free. The solar panel keeps the battery charged, not needed until about day 4 after setting up.
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:31 PM   #4
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Not sure a generator is right for your needs but here is a huge discussion on the subject from awhile back.

http://www.fiberglassrv.com/forums/f...aha-61909.html
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:53 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
FYI after 9 years of extensive camping I've never really needed a compressor when traveling. The one time I needed inflate my trailer tires a handy tire shop took care of it for free. The solar panel keeps the battery charged, not needed until about day 4 after setting up.

I've found a 12v compressor is sure handy for keeping bicycle tires inflated. Quit using a pump long ago. And I've never needed it, but on two occasions I have used it to pump up tires when neighboring campers had flat tires, one on a TV and the other on their trailer.


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Old 09-17-2014, 05:14 PM   #6
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Tire inflator is a pretty small item to pack as insurance. Considering the difference between cost of a good generator and cost of 100 watt solar set up. Only reason I can see for picking a genny is Air Conditioning & microwave.

Some folks with pets, or who find no AC extremely uncomfortable might opt of the generator but on weight and cost I would look to solar.
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Old 09-17-2014, 06:41 PM   #7
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Another negative point about generators. More and more places are restricting generator use. An example of recent changes, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument has generator free areas, plus 2 year ago generators could be used 3 times a day I think for 2 or 3 hours each time. Currently it's twice a day for maximum of 2 hours each , 8:00 am to 10:00 am and 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm.

This seems to be trend.
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Old 09-17-2014, 08:50 PM   #8
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I have a Honda 2000 eu sitting in my garage that hasn't been used in 5 or 6 years.
I added 50w Solar Panel to the 16 Scamp I had at the time.
All of my camping is boon docking and I have never run out of power.
If it's cold I run the furnace at night.
I have changed every light to LEDs.

You can install a complete 60w solar system including a group 29 deep cycle battery for less than half of what a good generator will cost you.
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Old 09-17-2014, 09:56 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
Another negative point about generators.

Why must we make negative points about generators, or anything else for that matter. If you're into boon docking, maybe solar is the way to go. Personally, I prefer a source of good ole 115 VAC to run the A/C when I need it. That is why I don't camp in the boonies. If I did, I wouldn't need solar power anyway. That's why they make Coleman lanterns and 5 gallon water cans and firewood to cook over and dual 6 v battery set-ups. I DO NOT use a generator when I go camping and honestly, I rarely hear them running. For that matter, I cannot remember hearing anyone running a generator anytime I've camped in the last two years. But I also will not praise the virtue of solar power as I believe it has it's drawbacks and it's limits, at least on the scale that is possible with a relatively small FG camper. My philosophy is simple. You camp with whatever equipment you like and I'll do the same. Just because I do not use what you use doesn't mean you are doing it all wrong, and I wouldn't presume to think my way is preferable.


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Old 09-18-2014, 12:02 AM   #10
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I think Byron was just making a point that some places restrict generator use for the OP to consider. Even if not a big fan of generators I doubt any offense was intended.

Nothing wrong with a generator if it works for where and when you camp. AC is primary reason because that is not going to run off of batteries. I have a friend in Fla. that takes a window AC unit with him when he tent camps. Some dog agility trials people have generators so they can keep the dogs and themselves comfortable in the camper. At least one or possibly two FGRV manufactures default configuration is all electric with no propane which suits people that want to pull into the campground and plug-in, no interest in using camper to boondock. So clearly there is a market for folks that want all electric convenience.

Honda EU 2000 generator starting at $1000 to run a converter for 12 volt does make solar a viable alternative for OP to consider. No reason one has to spend over $250 to have a 100 watt solar system and could get that down to around $200. How one camps and what appliances are desired determine if it is the better option or not. No one answer fits everyone.
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Old 09-18-2014, 12:22 AM   #11
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I think Byron was just making a point that some places restrict generator use for the OP to consider. Even if not a big fan of generators I doubt any offense was intended.

Nothing wrong with a generator if it works for where and when you camp. AC is primary reason because that is not going to run off of batteries. I have a friend in Fla. that takes a window AC unit with him when he tent camps. Some dog agility trials people have generators so they can keep the dogs and themselves comfortable in the camper. At least one or possibly two FGRV manufactures default configuration is all electric with no propane which suits people that want to pull into the campground and plug-in, no interest in using camper to boondock. So clearly there is a market for folks that want all electric convenience.

Honda EU 2000 generator starting at $1000 to run a converter for 12 volt does make solar a viable alternative for OP to consider. No reason one has to spend over $250 to have a 100 watt solar system and could get that down to around $200. How one camps and what appliances are desired determine if it is the better option or not. No one answer fits everyone.

Thanks Roger, you understood exactly what I wanted to point out. Most non-electric campgrounds I've been in have some sort of restrictions on generator use. I'm say good or bad, but that's the way it is. It also appears the there is a trend towards more restrictions for various reasons, which we don't need to go into in the thread, but it is something to take into consideration when contemplating purchasing a generator.

TO CPW:::
I have no idea where you to idea that anybody, including me was trying to tell you how camp, or anybody else how to camp. It seems that some people get really upset when alternative idea is presented.
All sources of power have a negative side to them which has been discussed before and your choice is a compromise as is mine though different.
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Old 09-18-2014, 01:04 AM   #12
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Good comments Roger and CPW on gennies and solar. I use both, one to cook (BBQ too) and one to keep the batteries topped off. Don't think I've been plugged in at a CG more than 30 days in 30 years. Our group boondocks and I am not comfortable in a CG. A genny running for a few hours to watch the TV news or whatever didn't bother anyone of us, we were around the camp fire. One of the guys ran a Honda 1000 all night (in the back of his truck) for his CPAP machine, he had it on the other side of his MH and as we all circle up, you couldn't hear it at all. He wasn't into a solar setup.
Like others have said, we all camp differently and what works for one may be off the wall for others. It's all in getting away from home and having fun.
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Old 09-18-2014, 05:16 AM   #13
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The OP post asked about generators (a well trod path at this point) and an answer that "you're better off with solar" seems vaguely unhelpful to me. Unless of course you suspect the questioner has never heard of solar panels which I consider unlikely. I suppose in the interest of pointing out alternatives, I should point out that there are wind power alternatives as well although seen more in marine applications but is a camping option too.

Still, bring certain subjects up (battery recharging, trailer leveling, refrigeration, shower P-traps, etc.) you can count on the fanboys of certain products will make their presence known.
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Old 09-18-2014, 05:34 AM   #14
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Inverter Generators

Quote:
Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post

TO CPW:::
I have no idea where you to idea that anybody, including me was trying to tell you how camp, or anybody else how to camp. It seems that some people get really upset when alternative idea is presented.
All sources of power have a negative side to them which has been discussed before and your choice is a compromise as is mine though different.

Byron,

I did not get the idea that you or anyone was trying to tell me how to camp (and I probably wouldn't give it any credence if you tried!)

I use neither solar or a generator when I camp. I was really trying to point out that everyone has different needs and thoughts about things. Camp in the boonies the south in the summer and see how fast you regret not having a generator and A/C, or camp in northern Canada in the winter without a furnace and see how warm your solar panels keep you. Or spend two weeks at that remote site and see how thankful you are to have those solar panels. Everything has it's place. I wouldn't buy solar panels because it would not be cost effective for me; I don't go out in the boonies. Would be like buying a $1,000 generator for a one time use.

I did not mean to offend anyone with my post. A forum like this is tough. You write something that others read and they sometimes take out of context. Can we agree if we were sitting around a campfire having a couple of cold ones, these "misunderstandings" would be clarified immediately because there would be less interpretation of intent and/or meaning necessary.


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Old 09-19-2014, 10:06 AM   #15
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generators and tire inflator ????

first thing that comes to mind is using a generator to charge batteries is going to take a LONG time....just plain not worth the effort.....might relieve the "low battery anxiety" in the owner's mind but that's about it.

there are a wide variety of very affordable 12volt tire inflators on the market...I've had one in my TV for years...(towed boats before RVs)

as for the "you camp the way you want to and I'll do the same"....unfortunately often that seems to be the mindset... consideration for others seems to have gone the way of the dodo bird....probably happened soon after they started installing outside speakers on RVs

as an example....I was camped in a rec site recently (no services, no fee)...six of the twelve sites were occupied...the cool light breeze coming off the lake was perfectly offset by the september sunshine

late in the afternoon a rig comes in and finds a place to park....ma, pa and the two kids pile out of the truck and proceed to make camp...it's now dinner time....the guy hauls a generator out of the truck, walks it around the trailer to the left side (wonder why?) and fires it up... goes back into the trailer, shutting the door (it's not that hot but the generator is "quieter" that way) where his kids sit down to play their video games on the big screen TV....while mom prepares her family a fine meal in the microwave...

ain't camping grand ??? LOL

there are lots of reasons to own a small trailer....one of the many is to go to, find and/or fit in places that "large" trailers can't

Happy (quiet) camping all...
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Old 09-19-2014, 11:54 AM   #16
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It is hard in a brief forum post to convey the "tone" of a comment. No doubt about that. I think it does help to consider that if this discussion was taking place around the campfire would that person be more likely to be expressing the idea in a "hostile" tone or a "friendly" one? My default assumption is that it would be a friendly exchange of ideas. If someone called me an SOB I'm not sure I would assume they meant Swell Old Boy but in general friendly disagreement is probably the intent.

On the OP's intended uses "recharging batteries or tire inflation" Normally it takes a long time to charge a deep cycle battery. They are designed to provide power at a slower rate and take on a charge the same way. So it is highly probable that generator run time will be fairly long if the battery charge is low. It is one of the things that make solar viable, it provides a long low rate of charge which suits deep cycles well.

There are some converters that claim to have a smart technology to do a "boost" charge to shorten that time. Progressive Dynamics includes this feature on some models. I can't speak to how well it works personally but other members have spoken well of them.

Previous discussion on the forum have left me with the impression that the 12 volt outlet/hookup provided on a generator is a poor way to charge you batteries. Better to have a good converter in camper and plug the camper in. Or a good battery charger.

Tire inflator will have power if you have a tow vehicle or a trailer battery to connect it to. Some have added a 12 volt outlet on the outside of the trailer that facilitates that. Not sure I would bother but it could be useful to have an outlet for 12 volt items outside. In any event consider how you would plug in the inflator and make sure your inflator cord is of sufficient length to get to your tires from you power source.

Yamaha and Honda are both noted for making small, low noise and fuel efficient generators. You have a range of approx. 350 to 2000 watts, do consider the demands of an AC unit if you intend to add that to your list of uses. You might start with the reviews on Amazon for Honda or Yamaha 350 or 1000 or 2000, there is also a 3000 but that is starting to get into a heavier bulkier generator.

I find most campers are friendly and courteous. In several decades of camping I find it rare to meet rude ones, not unheard of, just rare. Probably why it is so annoying when you encounter one. However people have different tolerance levels or standards for what behaviors bother them just as some folks have different ideas of what is acceptable behavior. Parents of young kids are used to the noise kids make when playing, others may be bothered more. It is a public place so there has to be some give and take.

I did find it somewhat annoying the one time I ended up next to someone that is in a beautiful rustic campground and spent all weekend inside watching TV or playing cards and running a generator but unless the rules bar that I guess I figure it is their vacation I just have to accept it or move. Instead I went swimming, beat AC and the beach was not in earshot of the generator. Adapt, Overcome! And maybe let the air out of their tires at night. Just Kidding.
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Old 09-19-2014, 03:47 PM   #17
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It is hard in a brief forum post to convey the "tone" of a comment. No doubt about that. I think it does help to consider that if this discussion was taking place around the campfire would that person be more likely to be expressing the idea in a "hostile" tone or a "friendly" one? My default assumption is that it would be a friendly exchange of ideas. If someone called me an SOB I'm not sure I would assume they meant Swell Old Boy but in general friendly disagreement is probably the intent.

Yes, and part of the problem is that people have a tendency to try to see either a friendly tone or a hostile tone when there is really no tone intended.
When I made the campfire comment, I wasn't thinking in terms of tone. What I meant was that when someone makes a statement that someone else questions or takes exception to, the opportunity for immediate clarification exists, without any of the parties trying to determine in what tone the statement was made. Written blogs like FGRV do not allow the ability to gain an immediate understanding of what the individual making the comment actually meant. And I strongly agree and hope that friendly disagreement is the intent of everyone here when they do take exception.
Sorry. Off topic a bit. Hope the OP got enough information or at least the information hoped for.


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Old 09-19-2014, 06:06 PM   #18
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The OP post asked about generators (a well trod path at this point) and an answer that "you're better off with solar" seems vaguely unhelpful to me. Unless of course you suspect the questioner has never heard of solar panels which I consider unlikely.
.
Based on the number and types of questions asked just on this forum on a monthly bases about solar I would suggest its not outside the realm of possibilities that although someone may have heard of solar they may not have thought of using it on their trailers. I also know by the frequency and types of questions I am asked by people while I am out camping about my system that there are a lot of people who apparently haven't considered using it on their rigs either.

I also don't believe its outside the realm of possibilities that someone new to RV'ing may also not be aware of just how unpopular and restrictive the use of generators has become in many parts of NA - even up here in Canada where power in our national and provincial parks is not all that common. Its not just in parks that generators are not popular either.... have seen/heard more than a few unhappy folks in the back country over generator use as well.

No solar may not meet everyones camping style/needs but how would someone be able to decide that if everyone was to scared of offending someone here to suggest it as a possible alternative and were to stick to only answering the questions asked?
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Old 09-20-2014, 06:25 AM   #19
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Based on the number and types of questions asked just on this forum on a monthly bases about solar I would suggest its not outside the realm of possibilities that although someone may have heard of solar they may not have thought of using it on their trailers. I also know by the frequency and types of questions I am asked by people while I am out camping about my system that there are a lot of people who apparently haven't considered using it on their rigs either.

I also don't believe its outside the realm of possibilities that someone new to RV'ing may also not be aware of just how unpopular and restrictive the use of generators has become in many parts of NA - even up here in Canada where power in our national and provincial parks is not all that common. Its not just in parks that generators are not popular either.... have seen/heard more than a few unhappy folks in the back country over generator use as well.

No solar may not meet everyones camping style/needs but how would someone be able to decide that if everyone was to scared of offending someone here to suggest it as a possible alternative and were to stick to only answering the questions asked?
Hubby and I used to boondock in our 13' boler a lot but we are now both on CPAP machines so have had to have hydro sites for past couple of years. We really aren't happy about that! We installed a deep cycle marine battery which takes care of lights, 12v fantastic fan etc, but not the CPAP machines. I bought two 12 volt folding solar panels that run concurrent to charge my 400 power pack but it will only run the machines for one night and the solar panels won't fully charge it up for the next night. I assume I don't have big enough solar panels. For us, here in Ontario where Carol you are right, generators are in many cases, banned, solar is the option I need to look at. Can you give me any information on how much solar I need?
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Old 09-20-2014, 07:17 AM   #20
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Can you give me any information on how much solar I need?
The answer requires math and several assumptions. The variables are numerous and specific to your circumstance. How much battery can you fit? What is the draw of your two machines? How low are you willing to draw the batteries down (lower means less life). What is the average sun where you camp? Will the panels be mounted flat or oriented toward the sun with some tilt? Wire size? Controller type? It goes on and on. Do some research and make some educated guesses and go from there. I copped out and bought two 100W panels and enough MPPT controller to add more panels if I need to.
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