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Old 08-23-2015, 04:27 PM   #21
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In short, trailer's power is 12V (battery and/or solar). 12v items don't need any additional equipment. 120v items need an inverter. If you need an ability to charge the battery and/or power up 12v items from 120v, then you need a converter.
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Old 08-23-2015, 04:30 PM   #22
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1. You need power inverter to power 120V items like the computer.
2. No, you don't need anything extra to power 12V items.
3. You'll need a power INVERTER (not converter) to run 120v items from battery/solar charger.
THANKS. It helps to know that just ordering the charging center is not giving me the complete package, and that for now, I don't need a converter unless I want to charge the battery from shore power.

Gordon2, the second link is especially helpful. I'm printing it out and adding it to my binder of research.
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Old 08-23-2015, 04:53 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Ellpea in CA View Post
Three questions:

1. Do I need an inverter to charge phone and computer from battery? NO
2. Do I need an inverter to power 12 volt items? NO
3. If my solar charger is adequate, would my only need for a CONverter be to run 120V items?
The 120 would run off shore power. The converter produces 12 volts to charge the battery and to run the 12 volt devices from shore power. It is powered from the 120 VAC.
Personally I doubt that the 35 watt solar panel will be enough to handle your loads with no converter for back up. Of course it depends on your loads and when you are using the power and how much sun you have per day and the orientation of the panel during the day.

If you have the trailer set up to charge the battery from the TV while traveling the battery should be in pretty good condition when you park.

If you have shore power the 120 volts will be available for charging / running our devices. The 12 volts could be used and if you are running on 12 volts and charging your devices while you use then a power supply that operates directly from 12 volts would be more efficient than using an inverter the produce 120 volts AC to plug into.

If you check the watt loading and check the time you will be using then then you can get an idea as to the sustainability of the solar system.

If you were extremely lucky and had 100% sun for 10 hours that would be 350 watts ( most likely less) to burn. 1 amp at 12 volts for an hour would be 12 watts. 10 hours of charging would be 120 watts etc.

There are several articles that describe how to audit your usage and requirements. On this I am no expert, but I plan to go solar after I have finished rebuilding my Scamp.
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Old 08-23-2015, 09:47 PM   #24
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If you have a car version of your charger that plugs into a cigarette lighter, or if the device comes with that then you need nothing else.


One of these 300 watt pure sine wave inverters should be able to run laptop, tv, DVD player etc. AND any USB power supply used to charge your devices.



http://www.amazon.com/300-watt-pure-...jq3wjcgcron9o6

For sensitive electronics you want the pure sine wave (clean) output, modified sine wave is cheaper but really not a good choice for sensitive electronics. Now if you want to run a blow dryer or percolator they can put out the juice at a low price but output is just not clean enough to be ideal for electronics.
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Old 08-24-2015, 05:54 AM   #25
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Roger is correct and quite possibly the easiest thing to do would be to install the 12 volt cigarette socket that you can plug your charger into and these could also be used in your car while traveling as well.
This way you can get the adapter you need for your devices and also easily change them if necessary.
I have been thinking through the same thing for my Scamp rebuild and I think tha tthis is what I will do.
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Old 08-24-2015, 08:42 AM   #26
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If my netbook is plugged into AC I almost exclusively charge my phone from the PC. A cable that came with the phone has what is called a "standard-A" plug on one end and a "micro-B' plug on the other end. It is the same cable that is used with the "wall wart" chargers and the automobile "cigarette lighter" chargers.

More than what most people want to know: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USB
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Old 08-25-2015, 12:16 AM   #27
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This component seems pretty versatile.
http://www.amazon.com/Multi-Use-Vehi...=12v+charging+
If I installed one 12 volt socket in the RV, this would act as an extension cord and give multiple outlets.

I would normally think that something like this would offer reduced power, but it claims to provide "heavy-duty capacity - rare 15 amp capacity."

The reviews are pretty stellar as well.
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Old 08-25-2015, 05:59 AM   #28
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The front of the device states 120Watts Max All Devices, that's 10 amps.
So much for advertising copy (again).



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Old 08-25-2015, 02:54 PM   #29
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The front of the device states 120Watts Max All Devices, that's 10 amps.
So much for advertising copy (again).
Rats.
Apart from the non-truth in advertising, wouldn't this unit be useful for my needs? There seems to be a lot of customer satisfaction, which I didn't see with several other combo units.
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Old 08-25-2015, 03:43 PM   #30
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Yep, it looks fine, but they always work more reliably if you hard wire them if possible.



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Old 08-25-2015, 05:10 PM   #31
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Yep, it looks fine, but they always work more reliably if you hard wire them if possible.
I'm not in total agreement (or disagreement for that matter) with this. I think hard wired is less inclined to have loose connection or get partly unplugged so as to not really charge the devices plugged in but....

I tend to be a little reluctant to hard wire after market "stuff" in. Now plugs themselves I'm good with, or normal infrastructure such as fantastic fan, water pump etc. all good wired in. Mostly I would do what Elle suggested use device such as she linked to as an extension cord.

Depending on camper make or model the best places to put 12 volt outlets from the standpoint of wiring them in may well not be the best place for all devices. I would say in our Scamp 13 the best spots for the outlets are the front face of the couch at the front or left side (dinette side)of kitchen base cabinet.

Extension cord arrangement would allow using an outlet on one end to plug in device at the other end or positioned extension block in the middle of the kitchen. Other floor plans may not favor this approach as much as ours would. I guess one could put a hard wired outlet at both ends too and then not find the device as useful.
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Old 08-25-2015, 06:27 PM   #32
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Interesting inverter; outlet positions

I'm still searching for the 12v socket of my dreams, and in the meantime came across this:

Amazon.com : KRIĖGER® 1100 Watt 12V Power Inverter Dual 110V AC outlets and Dual USB 2.1A car dc 12v to 110v ac adapter laptop charger notebook adapter dc charger ac adapter iphone cellphone usb charger UL CSA MET KR1100 : Electronics

I wasn't planning on doing an inverter right away, but this does look like a very reasonable price, and the reviews again seem to be very positive.

UPDATE: Just noticed it's a *SINE* inverter, which RogerDat recommended, and it's 1100 watts... RD sent me links to 300 watt items. So the price on this for what it provides seems very good, except how would I know if it's *pure* sine wave and not *modified*?

UPDATE #2: Discoveerd via customer comments that is a modified. Despair.

Quote:
Originally Posted by RogerDat View Post
Depending on camper make or model the best places to put 12 volt outlets from the standpoint of wiring them in may well not be the best place for all devices. I would say in our Scamp 13 the best spots for the outlets are the front face of the couch at the front or left side (dinette side)of kitchen base cabinet.

Extension cord arrangement would allow using an outlet on one end to plug in device at the other end or positioned extension block in the middle of the kitchen. Other floor plans may not favor this approach as much as ours would. I guess one could put a hard wired outlet at both ends too and then not find the device as useful.
RogerDat, I have seen some outlets in the most inconvenient places! Imagine leaning up against a 12V plug plugged into a socket while trying to wash dishes. And right now in my LilB, the three AC outlets are all positioned one in front of the sink, and one under each front and rear upper cabinet. So there is that leaning up against a cord problem, and then with the others we enjoy the pleasant visual of cords hanging down, or draped over our shoulder as we attempt to use the computer.

What possible purpose could there be for an outlet under these cabinets? I would much prefer outlets in the lower bunks, or at least on the SIDES of the kitchen cabinets.

BTW, this multi-tasking extension charger thingy -- it might become less necessary if we install several 12v sockets, OTOH, being portable it could also be used in the TV.
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Old 08-26-2015, 09:00 AM   #33
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I have a co-worker that uses one of those extension thingies to feed power to the kids devices in the rear seat.

Not being able to effectively run wires in the walls of a scamp behind the elephant hide does create some shall we say challenges. Don't neglect going down through the floor and coming back up where the outlet is desired. I'm looking at putting one in the bottom front of the closet, wheel well takes up most of that space so really only good for losing stuff down there anyway. I would probably run that wire down through the floor under the sink where the fuse box is and then come back up inside the closet.

The reason for outlets in the upper cabinets above the kitchen is easy. Both 12 volt and 110 volt run there already, or at least close the 110 volt fluorescent light over sink only needs to have a wire spliced in and run an inch or so to get in the upper cabinet. Heck the original light had a 2 prong ungrounded outlet. Only good for phone charger in this modern grounded plug day and age. There are also 12 volt lights on either end so splicing a line on for a 12 volt outlet is not too hard.

Man did I just date myself with calling it a "fuse box" or what?

Does anyone make electric boxes for the 12 volt outlets? If not in a wall I worry about something hitting the contacts and shorting them out.
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Old 08-26-2015, 01:59 PM   #34
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Date yourself? LOL! I still ask my kids if they have a *disk* for the computer!

While I was digging for fun electronics, I came across this:

niceeshop(TM) Mini 2 Wire DC 4.5-30V Blue LED Panel Digital Display Voltage Meter Voltmeter - Voltage Testers - Amazon.com

For that price, I ordered it to try it out. I think visuals like this will help me get my head around the math involved in watts and amps, and help with determining what uses how much.
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Old 08-26-2015, 10:07 PM   #35
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You can also look at Blue Sea. Pricy but nice


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Old 08-26-2015, 11:54 PM   #36
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http://www.amazon.com/Digital-Voltme...0J2Y52A49G3Q7E

Just picked up and mounted these throughout the scamp. Actually ordered another one. It's simple to tap into the 12v and is super convenient to have the usb ports. The voltage meter is nice as well. I wired in a rocker switch for when not in use as to not have a phantom load.
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Old 08-28-2015, 02:40 PM   #37
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Pure sine inverter

Does this one look too good to be true (price-wise)? There are no reviews yet.

Amazon.com : PowerTech ON Advanced Technology PURE SINE WAVE Inverter 1000W Cont/2000W Peak, 12V DC - 120V AC w/ Black & Red Cables w/Ring Terminals, Remote Switch, Protection System & 3 Output Sockets - PS1002 : Car Electronics
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Old 08-28-2015, 03:21 PM   #38
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We have something very similar to that in our Scamp. It looks identical, but it's in storage so I can't check the brand. I will say, that it is located on the sofa side of the cabinet and it is a very real PIA to turn the sofa into a bunk because it sticks out so far the cushion has to be removed in order to flip the back of the sofa into position. Just an FYI as you are deciding on where to place it

Also, we have used our inverter once. It took about 6 hours to charge an HD Nook tablet.
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Old 08-28-2015, 03:24 PM   #39
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Emily, do you know the wattage output of your inverter? (I realize you said it's in storage, but just in case you know off of the top of your head!)

Did you notice any significant drain on your battery? Do you have any charging capability *for* the battery when you're off grid?
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Old 08-28-2015, 03:31 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellpea in CA View Post
Emily, do you know the wattage output of your inverter? (I realize you said it's in storage, but just in case you know off of the top of your head!)

Did you notice any significant drain on your battery? Do you have any charging capability *for* the battery when you're off grid?
I *think* there is a booklet in the camper. I'll go over there tomorrow and see what it says because now I'm curious. We actually charged two Nooks, for a total of about 12 hours, and continued to use the battery after (but only for the little lights on the cabinets in the evening before bed, so not much). We were out for ten days and let the kids charge them on about day six, to use on the loooong drive home.

The previous owner has us all set up for solar, with all of the wiring and things needed to install it- and included a LOT of paperwork and wiring diagrams, which is why I think there is info on the inverter. It all seems so beyond us, so currently we haven't even looked at it at all. I'd eventually love to be able to use solar, so some day! He did a lot of mods to the electric, with cigarette lighter type adapters in six places along with cable and a radio
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