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Old 06-25-2013, 01:15 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Ron in BC View Post
So I'm not the only one that noticed that generator running away in the middle of other trailers and wondered why? What do you need it for at this time of day? But I was too polite to ask, that's a first
.
I not only heard it myself although it was indeed a small one but pretty well everyone at the meet apparently heard it as well and as the Wagon Master I heard from pretty well all of them on the topic. LOL you were one of the few I didnt hear from! LOL Would love to have heard the answer to your question. I was to actually to scared to ask as I wasnt sure I really wanted to hear the answer.

Guess what the new rule regarding generators at our meets might be next year? The suggestion was made that perhaps another workshop on solar and power conservation was also in order for next years meet.

The issues of course not only was the sound but at issue was why a generator was needed in that size of trailer for only 3 days of camping to start with.

The cost and environmental argument was of course the center of the arguments presented against the use of a generator. The fact that a small Honda generator of the so called Super Quite type runs about $900 or more in these parts - with solar going at about just over a dollar a watt these days one could plaster the top of most fiberglass trailers with more solar than would ever be needed for that amount of money. I did present the argument on behalf of the generator owner that there actually wasn't enough room on the roof of the trailer for 900 watts Then there is the on going operating cost of the gas and the carbon footprint argument that goes along with that & the safety issues around carrying extra gas cans. Of course the fact the meet was in the backcountry of BC just added to the environmental debate as many/most felt the sound of the generator is an environmental pollutant - even though it was the middle of the day & people themselves were making a lot of noise at the time. The times are changing and it was pretty clear to me that peoples tolerance to generators is going downhill fast.

I have a 16' Scamp and managed to get out from April 1 to December 24th last year for over 160 days of camping and got by with only a small solar panel for well over half of those camping days. Having all LED lights helps out a lot and yes the original furnace is loud & a power drainer but if you only use it for a short time before bed and a short time in the morning its pretty tolerable. Add an extra bed cover and a hot water bottle and its pretty comfortable even in December.
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Old 06-25-2013, 04:42 AM   #22
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The super quiet generators are quiet...last weekend a larger 5th wheel trailer was camped pretty close,maybe 200 feet from me and I only heard his twin honda 2000's when I was about 30 feet away and they were just purring. I had zero issues with it... I didnt need to run mine it dropped into the low 60's at night but to each their own. Solar is good but if you have a mounted rooftop unit and are parked in the tree's its not really going to do much to create power... so the generator is needed. Now if someone is running a loud construction kinda generator I would say something but there are plenty of them that are very quiet and could easily be playing some horrid music much louder. Tolerance is a good thing to learn...
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Old 06-25-2013, 06:14 AM   #23
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Generators are a tough call, mostly because of the cheap contractor units. They make a kind of “clacking” type sound that really carries.

My Honda 1000 doesn’t run above idle when the trailer is plugged in and the converter is charging at full tilt. I characterize the sound as a “chuffing” and it’s virtually inaudible beyond the campsite. I try to point the muffler off towards an unoccupied area as a further aid.

My annoyance is largely directed towards those characters who roll up, set up, then it’s on to the radio way louder than my generator. Even if I like their choice of music I don’t need it jammed down my throat (ears?). And it's not my generator they're trying to drown out as it happens generator or not.

Like the OP, my sites are almost always heavily forested. I’m just not going to spend my time chasing a sunny spot around my campsite. I’ll go solar when I retire and make my grand tour of the southwest and up through the badlands. Maybe I’ll bring a small tree in a pot to show around since they appear to be so rare out there.
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:34 AM   #24
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As quiet as the Honda 1000/2000 UI generators are I am still annoyed by them when they run for extended periods right next to my site. I am however thankful that they aren't as loud as some of the other "hammer of Thor" generators I've heard.
Just as I don't want to hear a diesel truck idling endlessly while camping I also do not want to hear a small car idling, or one of these quiet generators. It's just unwanted and unpleasant background noise that greatly defeats the sound of nature we are there to enjoy.
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:50 AM   #25
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Well sorry in advance but unless you camp in the middle of nowhere there is always going to besomething that can annoy you... yelling kids, music, generators, people etc...but if I need to run my Yamaha I'm going to...its an imperfect world so I just learn to tolerate unless its unbearably loud after dark. The quiet generators are fine by me...**** this weekend I had 3 friends complaining about the cicadas
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:53 AM   #26
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Everybody wants something different from their camping experience. Everybody’s tolerance level is different. No one gets to impose their way on everybody else. Beyond radios, yapping dogs and hoodlum (that would be all of them) children are unwarranted to me and ruin MY camping experience. Makes me appreciate those who clean up after their pets and who keep kids and pets down to a low roar.

Yikes, Deryk and I were typing away at the same time saying something similar.
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Old 06-25-2013, 03:51 PM   #27
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That's why I always used room temperature water for formula bottle feeding. It gives you more freedom on the road. :-) perhaps time to wean off the heat. They get used to it. And I'm told they never starve themselves ;-)

I prefer stove top popcorn to microwave any day ;-)
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Old 06-25-2013, 04:09 PM   #28
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Do keep in mind that 1,000 watts of power is peak output for that generator, and that Honda's famously touted "only 65db's" of noise is measured at idle. Not to mention at fifty feet away...

You haven't experienced True Ear Pain until you power up a 1,000 watt microwave with a 1,000 watt generator. The generator screech will knock the birds out of the trees at your boondocking site.

If all this to-do is really about the little one's milk, I recommend you try those shelf-stable single-serving milk boxes. I doubt the difference between room temp and the target temp will be detectable, and if it is carrying one around in one's pocket for an hour should bring it up to the proper level. As for nightime warmth, put two-piece sweats (tops with hoods) on them instead of jammies before you zip them in their bags. This works well in all temps.

Good luck and have fun!

Francesca, experienced Grandma.
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Old 06-25-2013, 04:44 PM   #29
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......... Anybody who takes exception to its use in a neighboring campground needs to buy their own 50 acres and avoid state parks. .............Bill
Thanks for educating us. This explains a lot of the behavior that I see, especially in state parks.
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Old 06-25-2013, 05:31 PM   #30
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And I'm told they never starve themselves
I wish that were true. I was a single dad with a three year old, and nine month old twins, one diagnosed as failure to thrive. She just would not eat. Very stressful.
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Old 06-25-2013, 05:50 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by wjquigs
......... Anybody who takes exception to its use in a neighboring campground needs to buy their own 50 acres and avoid state parks. .............Bill

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Originally Posted by Thomas G. View Post
Thanks for educating us. This explains a lot of the behavior that I see, especially in state parks.
LOL kind of reminds me of listening to an interview a few years back with our then Provincial Premier and he was asked why BC Provincial Parks have so few power camping sites if any at all & why his government wasn't willing to put more power into the parks, along with wi-fi etc. His response was that this is Super Natural BC and most people go camping to relax and get away from all the electronics and want peace and quiet. If people have to have a TV, stereo and microwave to camp then they should just camp in their driveway at home. I voted for that guy for several terms!
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:05 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Francesca Knowles View Post
Do keep in mind that 1,000 watts of power is peak output for that generator, and that Honda's famously touted "only 65db's" of noise is measured at idle. Not to mention at fifty feet away...
I don't think so. Here are the noise specs
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59 dB(A) @ rated load 53dB(A) @ 1/4 load
That's less than 65 dB even at full load, and something less than 53 dB at idle. The customary test distance appears to be 7 metres (23 feet); although there is apparently a U.S. National Park Service Regulation which specifies a limit for noise at 50 feet, that's not the distance which corresponds to the Honda spec or the independent tests that report similar (but somewhat higher) actual noise levels.

An open-frame generator at full blast is another thing entirely.

I like the idea of getting warm milk by buying UHT milk and never making it cold... if the serving size is suitable.
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Old 06-25-2013, 07:07 PM   #33
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I wish that were true. I was a single dad with a three year old, and nine month old twins, one diagnosed as failure to thrive. She just would not eat. Very stressful.
That would be stressful indeed.
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Old 06-25-2013, 08:15 PM   #34
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I don't think so. Here are the noise specs

That's less than 65 dB even at full load, and something less than 53 dB at idle. The customary test distance appears to be 7 metres (23 feet); although there is apparently a U.S. National Park Service Regulation which specifies a limit for noise at 50 feet, that's not the distance which corresponds to the Honda spec or the independent tests that report similar (but somewhat higher) actual noise levels.

An open-frame generator at full blast is another thing entirely.

I like the idea of getting warm milk by buying UHT milk and never making it cold... if the serving size is suitable.
Thanks for the correction, Brian- should have looked up the independent testing again before I posted.

This test was made by the University of Alabama in 2006. Although it's of the 2000 instead of the 1000 "I" series, the numbers are very similar and do bear out yours/Honda's numbers, and at the distances you mention.

That having been said, I now launch in to my favorite "false advertising" rant:

What those numbers do NOT bear out is Honda's oft-repeated "quieter than human conversation" bushwa. Little known and certainly never spoken by Honda is the fact that human conversation is measured at a distance-from-source of three feet. Link to chart.

Although due to background noise, the U. of. Al. test doesn't give Honda numbers at that close a range, since at ten feet the Honda puts out close to seventy-five db, I think it's fair to suspect that at "human conversation distance" the levels may well be as high as the damage-to-hearing 90 db threshold.

But the "quieter than convo" myth continues to be advertised and repeated...I'm surprised, in fact, that nobody's mentioned it so far in this thread.

End of rant...for now!

Francesca
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Old 06-25-2013, 09:07 PM   #35
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Francesca,

I can't hear you.

baglo
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Old 06-25-2013, 09:10 PM   #36
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Francesca,

I can't hear you.

baglo


Well as we can see peoples opinions on generators, microwaves etc. Do what you need to to make your kids happy and dont sweat the opinions. Yes a construction type generator will probably get you strung up... running the quieter generator types is fine imho
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Old 06-25-2013, 10:09 PM   #37
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Thanks for educating us. This explains a lot of the behavior that I see, especially in state parks.
Is it really so different in Michigan? Here in Washington, and most places I've camped on the west coast, you absolutely do not go to a state park for quiet and to "get away from it all". The campsites are packed in so close that you can usually hear every detail of your neighbors' conversations, generator or no. For me, that's OK: if you made each campsite twice as big, you'd have a lot less noise, but half as many people would be able to camp. The only reason I would consider running a Honda 1000 is because I can state categorically that I have never camped in a state park in summer, where it would be even fractionally as loud as the general background din. Do they not let kids in Michigan state parks?

Here, if you want peace and quiet, you camp on BLM or Forest Service land.

Having said that, the bulk of the more useful posts on this thread have convinced me that giving up the microwave is probably easier and better than trying to power it, so that's what I'm going to do. And I might just bring my 15-watt solar panel and amp hour meter and see what happens.

Bill
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Old 06-26-2013, 05:28 AM   #38
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In another thread elswhere, they're talking about bringing a PA to an event at a state park. Sort of selective anarchy. Everyone else's noise is bad but not my noise.
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Old 06-26-2013, 06:59 AM   #39
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A little off topic but I think this applies. We once stayed at a motel on the lake front that offered free charcoal and BBQ's with the rooms. When I queried the owner as to why they didn't use propane. Their reply was that waiting for the charcoal to get ready forces people to sit back and relax. That is something many have forgotten how to do.
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Old 06-26-2013, 07:14 AM   #40
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A little off topic but I think this applies. We once stayed at a motel on the lake front that offered free charcoal and BBQ's with the rooms. When I queried the owner as to why they didn't use propane. Their reply was that waiting for the charcoal to get ready forces people to sit back and relax. That is something many have forgotten how to do.
I am indeed brainstorming ideas of how to hook up The Green Egg to the trailer somewhat like the propane tank.
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