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  1. #426
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    In my van
    Posts
    54
    Haha no doubt! I steer clear of electric heat unless I'm plugged in.

    When considering a solar system, you have to factor in how much sunlight you will be getting. In the mountains during winter your usable sunlight hours are between 1 and 3 depending on cloud cover. This is very little! So keep that in mind.

    The auxiliary battery is a good idea, since it charges while you drive and leaves your primary alone for starting. Then you can use a smaller inverter to do things like charging electronics and running an LED lamp. Don't foget an isolator though.

    As far as water goes, I have a small greywater system that's in the main cabin and easily removed. Since it usually doesn't drop below freezing in my van, the water stays liquid. I also have my drinking water in a 18.7L jug (water cooler bottle) that I refill at a grocery store for $2. I got a handpump attachment for the bottle and it works great.

    You can also get RV water anti-freeze that is non-toxic. If you put that in your grey water, which is not for drinking, then you should be fine.
    I eat, I sleep, I ski.

  2. #427
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    257
    due to this thread I got a 28' class A. going with two 18v panels (~400w) and a regular controller, 3x125 aH Group 29s. I already upgraded the converter to 55amp. it has a gas gen (4kw), a propane furnace, water heater, quite a bit of freshwater + black & grey capacity. going to add pipe, elbow & tank heaters for the water. Planning winter tires (& chains). 1.5" foam cored walls & ceiling, should be about as good as possible. oh & bigass LP tank too.

    if 375 aH is weak I can slide a 4th Grp 29 into the bank (would then be 400aH)

    At which resorts can we park an RV for skiing? Seems to be a short list.
    Aspen Highlands doesn't seem to encourage it
    Wolf Creek Pass?
    A Basin?
    Steamboat?

    I betcha Mt Bohemia in the UP will welcome us

    Who welcomes us in MT?

  3. #428
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    144
    Ive stayed at big sky in the parking lot for a week twice and nobody say shit.Class a 33

  4. #429
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    257
    thats good to know thanks & I welcome additional input on dirtbag friendly liftco pkg lots, especially in the Rockies. Seems the PNW has it good!

    hey rocker6666 do you have water or drycamp? have you modded your battery bank & charging system?

  5. #430
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    257
    Thank you Wolf Creek!

    "Yes, Wolf Creek allows overnight parking for RV's. You'll need to talk to a parking attendant and let them know you are planning on parking overnight. The parking attendant will instruct you on where to park and give you any further instructions."

  6. #431
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Jackson Hole
    Posts
    2,529
    This is for sale in a parking lot here in JH. I don't know who's it is, but it looks pretty sweet. Liberty is doing the modeling.

    $6995.00 w/ a bunch of new parts and tires.



    Some mag could really have a good time in this rig.
    Custom Boots - Hand Tunes - Daily Wax
    Basement of the Hostel, Teton Village




    Do not tell fish stories where the people know you; but particularly, don't tell them where they know the fish.

    Mark Twain

  7. #432
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    In my van
    Posts
    54
    Quote Originally Posted by skiing-in-jackson View Post
    This is for sale in a parking lot here in JH. I don't know who's it is, but it looks pretty sweet. Liberty is doing the modeling.

    $6995.00 w/ a bunch of new parts and tires.



    Some mag could really have a good time in this rig.
    Beauty! Decommed Ambulances are the snaz!
    I eat, I sleep, I ski.

  8. #433
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    249
    Check out the "Sleeping in the car in winter " thread for info and stoke!

  9. #434
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Sparwood BC
    Posts
    255
    Re 'Welcoming you in Montana'. If you are thinking of crossing the border because you are so close, Fernie will not welcome you but Castle will. $20 with plugin and you can reserve a spot before you get there.
    Re charging all those batteries on the Class A. Obviously snow is the enemy for solar panels but it sounds like you are pretty well fixed to run that big furnace with the generator. You might check out a remanufactured smart charger from Intellipower. Top quality units that can reduce charge times by 75% and are not expensive especially when it prolongs your battery's life. I have used one for 5 years and it's probably the best investment I made for our Triple E class C.

  10. #435
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Calgary, AB
    Posts
    237
    ^This is good info, being a Calgarian. Have been seriously pondering getting a Delica or something like that, and messing around with it a bit to make it livable for short trips.

  11. #436
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Sparwood BC
    Posts
    255
    Another very cheap and effective insulation upgrade is to insulate your windows. They are one of the biggest sources of heat loss in winter. I used pink or blue styrofoam as thick as feasible to fit the inside window opening than used foam adhesive to glue on Reflectex to bounce back any radiant heat. Pull down your blind to keep the panel in place. In the summer I can flip most to the panels over so the Refectex faces out and this makes a huge difference to summer heat build up in the RV. BTW the panels almost eliminate winter window condensation

  12. #437
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Quote Originally Posted by Sparwood Dave View Post
    You might check out a remanufactured smart charger from Intellipower. Top quality units that can reduce charge times by 75% and are not expensive especially when it prolongs your battery's life. I have used one for 5 years and it's probably the best investment I made for our Triple E class C.
    You mean something like this?

    http://www.modmyrv.com/2008/06/08/rv-battery-charger

    I think I need a short course in the workings of RV electric systems. I don't understand what the difference between that and this are....

    http://www.modmyrv.com/2008/06/12/rv...verter-upgrade

  13. #438
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    10,655
    A battery charger is just that - it takes AC current and charges your 12v system. Usually they have different stages of charge which regulates how many amps are being fed to the battery. Most are usually portable.

    A converter is a device that takes AC power and converts it to run your 12v system (lights, fridge, etc.). This is what you see when folks "plug in" at campgrounds. Some will also charge your battery as well.

    An inverter takes your 12v DC from your camper or truck battery and inverts it to 120 AC to run plug in appliances.

    A generator takes fuel and converts it to either 12v DC, 120V AC or both.

  14. #439
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    SE Alaska
    Posts
    11,720
    Alex posing in his rig. The floor splits just ahead of him, opening in two places. There will be storage and a water tank below him with about a 10" depth.


    I had some left over Pergo flooring, so I used it in the Samurai. Welcome to the ghetto, wall to wall carpet baby.


    Porta-potty. No reason to leave toilet paper all over the Utah desert.


    Day couch.


    Water tank will eventually go under the floor with some tools, etc.


    Yeah, it's not an XPVJ whatever, but I'll have less than $5,000 in to it by the time I'm done(including the price of the vehicle). And yeah, it won't go 75mph down the highway, but it will go anywhere else I need it to, and I won't be sending my hard earned money to the bank.

  15. #440
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Sparwood BC
    Posts
    255
    The problem with the charger/converter unit in most RVs (particularly older ones) is they charge your batteries at a fixed rate such as 6 amps per hour. So for example if you need to recharge by putting 120 amp hours into your batteries it will take 20 hours. Then, after the batteries are charged the 'dumb' charger will continue to put 6 amps into your batteries until they boil dry and are ruined. Depending on the amount of batteries to be recharged, an RV specific smart charger like the Intellipower can pump 40 to 80 amps (depending on model) into your batteries then cut back the charge rate as the batteries become 'full'. The 120 amp hour charge would than only take 2 hours if you had the 60 amp unit. Hope that makes sense.

  16. #441
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Thanks also to Sparwood Dave...

    Quote Originally Posted by MakersTeleMark View Post
    A battery charger is just that - it takes AC current and charges your 12v system. Usually they have different stages of charge which regulates how many amps are being fed to the battery. Most are usually portable.

    A converter is a device that takes AC power and converts it to run your 12v system (lights, fridge, etc.). This is what you see when folks "plug in" at campgrounds. Some will also charge your battery as well.

    An inverter takes your 12v DC from your camper or truck battery and inverts it to 120 AC to run plug in appliances.

    A generator takes fuel and converts it to either 12v DC, 120V AC or both.
    Do RVs with generator setups charge off the generator too?

    If the *converter* sits on the line in from an external AC source, then it must be isolated from the *charger* that, what, comes off vehicle power? Most big RVs will have both a charger and a converter?

    From what Sparwood Dave says, sounds like if you have a solar panel that is powerful enough, you could charge a battery or two even on days with spotty or weak sunlight?

    What measurement on my laptop (or other) adapter do I want to look at to be able to do the math on how much drain it will have on an RV system?

  17. #442
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Sparwood BC
    Posts
    255
    In my RV the converter and charger are the same unit. When I plug into 110 V (either a wall outlet or my little Honda EU 1000 generator) first the Converter part converts 110 V to 12 V then the Charger part uses that to charge the batteries, run lights, CO detector, DSI fridge, DSI water heater etc. RVs with built in generators will charge their batteries but it could still be through an older 'dumb' converter/charger unit which means long gen run times and risk of boiling batteries.
    Yes solar panels will charge batteries. Most of my friends winter in Baja and that's all they use. It's warm so batteries function at full efficiency, lots of sun directly overhead, no snow covering the panels and no huge power draws from their furnace. All the things that work for Baja solar panels work against you in cold snowy climates.
    My furnace draws 7 amps. If it runs 1/4 of the time in 20 below thats 42 amps every 24 hours. With reduced efficiency due to cold my 240 amp hour golf cart batteries may only have 120 amp hours in them plus my appliances, lights, CO and smoke detectors you can see the available power is used up fairly quickly.
    Unless plugged into 110 V you will need an Inverter to change 12 V from your batteries back to 110 V so you can plug in your computer. A little 150 watt inverter will probably do the trick but 300 watts would be more useful for other things too like a hand held blender for margaritas

  18. #443
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    257
    Quote Originally Posted by udp88 View Post
    Thanks also to Sparwood Dave...



    Do RVs with generator setups charge off the generator too? YES the better the charge section in the converter, the shorter the generator run time needed to bulk charge the batteries

    If the *converter* sits on the line in from an external AC source, then it must be isolated from the *charger* that, what, comes off vehicle power? Most big RVs will have both a charger and a converter? THE converter has a charger section built-in.

    From what Sparwood Dave says, sounds like if you have a solar panel that is powerful enough, you could charge a battery or two even on days with spotty or weak sunlight? THE bigger the panel voltage, the bigger the margin you have for cloudy days where solar panel charge output is reduced but still present.

    What measurement on my laptop (or other) adapter do I want to look at to be able to do the math on how much drain it will have on an RV system?
    LOOK at watts on the laptop label. Convert watts to amps, add up all your devices like curling irons, hair dryers...

    See more replies hidden in the quote above

  19. #444
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    20 steps from the hot tub
    Posts
    3,658
    "Good girls go to heaven. Bad ones go to hell. And girls on fast bikes go anywhere they want." Elena

  20. #445
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    1,202
    drooling over this euro sprinter diesel with benefits
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

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    picador

  21. #446
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    is everything
    Posts
    652

  22. #447
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Calgary, AB
    Posts
    237
    ^Awesome. How do you guys FIND this stuff?

  23. #448
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    In my van
    Posts
    54
    Haha scouring CL and Kijiji works for me, ebay also has some rare finds.
    I eat, I sleep, I ski.

  24. #449
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Eagle, CO
    Posts
    2,243
    Trackhead: The Samuri is looking nice!

  25. #450
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Posts
    33
    Is something like this a good deal? What questions would you ask if you were looking at something like this? No solar, which is a bummer, but allows for the buyer to install a kickass system entirely of their liking.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...m=290604003996

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