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Old 02-20-2014, 06:07 PM   #41
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Re: hamper


We keep ours in the shower. Just take it out when showering, put it back when not. Works for us!
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Old 02-21-2014, 05:28 AM   #42
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Us too! Let me rephrase the question. What do you use the storage at each end of the bed for?
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Old 02-21-2014, 07:15 AM   #43
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I was surprised how much stuff fits in it. What does anybody do with the hampers?
+1
We were amazed at the amount of storage. We keep an extra blanket and some other less frequently used items in the hampers. Noise from the furnace tends to come up through the hamper at the head of the bed, but that's easily mitigated by stuffing a coat or towels in there at night.

In the foot end hamper I installed a 410W converter to power the TV when boondocking, as our favorite campground has no electricity. Didn't wanna screw holes in the wall, and it fits perfectly in the hamper where the holes will never show.

Will try to post a pic of the installation this evening when I get home.

Edit to add: our 410W Schumacher converter has a rather noisy fan, and putting it in the hamper helps a ton. Just make sure to leave open space in there for the air to circulate, maybe leave hamper open this summer when it's hot.
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Old 02-21-2014, 09:19 AM   #44
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Hamper solution

We use the ebags packing cubes for our clothes then store the cubes in the hampers. Two medium size and one large for each of us. One color for her and a different color for me. The cubes are pretty reasonable.
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Old 02-21-2014, 05:48 PM   #45
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If anyone is considering the Schumacher 410W, be advised the fan runs all the time the TV is on. Also, the supplied 12V plug is too short to reach the outlet so I took the one off our old one.
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Old 02-22-2014, 08:37 AM   #46
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How much battery does that thing suck? I am interested, looks to be worth it if my 2 batts will run it OK.

Thanks all for the suggestions. I am now researching ways to keep UPS and FEDEX in business...
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Old 02-22-2014, 03:55 PM   #47
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How much battery does that thing suck? I am interested, looks to be worth it if my 2 batts will run it OK.

Thanks all for the suggestions. I am now researching ways to keep UPS and FEDEX in business...
Buy a TV/DVD combo that runs on 12DC and you won't have to use a stinkin converter.
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Old 02-23-2014, 07:41 AM   #48
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Buy a TV/DVD combo that runs on 12DC and you won't have to use a stinkin converter.
Because the selection of 12 volt DC TV/DVD's is a total joke on quality. The selection of regular ones that will be a fine fit is fantastic. I picked up a 24" Samsung 1080P at Costco for $149 and a Samsung Blueray for < 100. Did not want a combo as I have always had problems on the DVD prior to the TV going out. The Sansui that was in the unit is absolutely not my taste in color reproduction and I have more Blue Ray than DVD anymore. I think the Sansui was excellent in ease of use though. To be honest, I really don't figure on watching a whole heck of a lot of TV while camping anyway, but I am kinda anal on color just because and sound because of hearing problems.

I picked up an Energizer 500 inverter for $41 off Amazon that had great reviews. The reviews on the Schumachers concerned me. I still want to find out how much energy is wasted on these things though. (The inverters ). I'll have one to experiment with soon.
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Old 02-23-2014, 08:38 AM   #49
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That 400 watt inverter should draw a maximum of about 40 amps when running at capacity.

And it's an INverter, not a CONverter. A converter converts 120 volts to 12 volts DC. An inverter inverts 12 volts DC to 120 volts AC.
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Old 02-23-2014, 06:06 PM   #50
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How much battery does that thing suck? I am interested, looks to be worth it if my 2 batts will run it OK.

Thanks all for the suggestions. I am now researching ways to keep UPS and FEDEX in business...
No idea. We've got two golf car batteries and just got back from an overnight using the furnace, fridge (w/cooling fan that seems to run almost all the time), approx 2 hrs TV/DVD run time, as well as lights and a white noise machine plugged in all night and the micropulse indicator never showed battery below 3/4...although that's not a very accurate indicator. Next time I'll take the lids off the batts before heading home and check w/voltmeter.
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Old 02-23-2014, 06:11 PM   #51
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That 400 watt inverter should draw a maximum of about 40 amps when running at capacity.

And it's an INverter, not a CONverter. A converter converts 120 volts to 12 volts DC. An inverter inverts 12 volts DC to 120 volts AC.
This is why I'm perpetually confused about those words. Converter is what it says on the actual item.
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Old 02-23-2014, 07:33 PM   #52
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Power used by inverter

The manual on the Schumacher PID410 says it draws 0.4 amps with no load, and it's "optimum" efficiency is 85%. I'd say that is pretty decent.

One thing to watch for, though. A friend of ours with an SOB has tried two different inverters, with poor results. My wife the electrical engineer checked them our on her bench. She found that they both drew significant current when they were turned off. One of them drew over an amp when "off". So if you can measure the "off" current of yours you will know if you need to unplug it when not in use.
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Old 02-23-2014, 07:33 PM   #53
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Yup, it's an inverter. The draw for the device in watts is easy to figure, the heat generation is the unknown waste point I am concerned with. the fact all of them have constant fans and fins would indicate loss due to heat is a considerable factor.
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Old 02-24-2014, 12:20 PM   #54
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The manual on the Schumacher PID410 says it draws 0.4 amps with no load, and it's "optimum" efficiency is 85%. I'd say that is pretty decent.

One thing to watch for, though. A friend of ours with an SOB has tried two different inverters, with poor results. My wife the electrical engineer checked them our on her bench. She found that they both drew significant current when they were turned off. One of them drew over an amp when "off". So if you can measure the "off" current of yours you will know if you need to unplug it when not in use.
They had an on/off switch and one drew over an amp when off? That's HORRIBLE. Do you happen to remember a brand name? My Xantrex ProWatt 600 claims 90% optimum efficiency and "< 0.6a" no-load draw, but I've always assumed (without testing) that it's essentially 0 draw when switched off.
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:13 PM   #55
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They had an on/off switch and one drew over an amp when off? That's HORRIBLE. Do you happen to remember a brand name? My Xantrex ProWatt 600 claims 90% optimum efficiency and "< 0.6a" no-load draw, but I've always assumed (without testing) that it's essentially 0 draw when switched off.
Yeah, but if what he says above is correct it may be running the fan all the time.
I would hope for at least 90%. If not that is a bunch of heat to dissipate...
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Old 02-24-2014, 08:26 PM   #56
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Don't remember the brand

We don't remember the brands of the two inverters tested, so I can't tell you what to avoid.
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Old 03-03-2014, 06:58 PM   #57
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Starting to personalize

How AS says the mattress should fit.

How I fixed it quick (can't open lower doors far enough yet, but you can't open them all the way the other way).

Cheryl's color choice.

Added a shelf. (Have not put in the cable management yet).

Put some fish in the "sardine can™"


Threw in a clock to top it off.

Then we spiced it up...
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Old 03-05-2014, 09:51 AM   #58
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Like what you did with the bed edge...gonna look into that for ours. Thanks for the idea!

Maybe the tendency to squeeze mattress into too small a space is pervasive in the industry. Our old SOB was so tight, stuffing blankets around the edge would almost make your fingers bleed. We replaced that mattress with an aftermarket foam which I cut an inch smaller on all sides and that did the trick.
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Old 03-05-2014, 10:09 AM   #59
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Like what you did with the bed edge...gonna look into that for ours. Thanks for the idea!

Maybe the tendency to squeeze mattress into too small a space is pervasive in the industry. Our old SOB was so tight, stuffing blankets around the edge would almost make your fingers bleed. We replaced that mattress with an aftermarket foam which I cut an inch smaller on all sides and that did the trick.
Sure, it's part of the general "our numbers are bigger than their numbers" marketing game. "Our mattress is 58 inches wide while theirs is only 56 inches!" etc.
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Old 03-05-2014, 10:48 AM   #60
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They had an on/off switch and one drew over an amp when off? That's HORRIBLE. Do you happen to remember a brand name? My Xantrex ProWatt 600 claims 90% optimum efficiency and "< 0.6a" no-load draw, but I've always assumed (without testing) that it's essentially 0 draw when switched off.
It is very rare for an inverter to draw any power at all when the switch is in the off position. Some may draw a few mA to keep the circuits which actually control the on/off function hot (so small wires can be used and small switches can be used) on the on/off feature, but my experience is that few even use any to do that.

The thing which draws power is the inverter on, but nothing connected to it, or nothing actually using any power on it. That idle draw can be quite low (60 mA or so) to really high (1.75 A). The factory 1000 watt Sine Wave inverter on my 2014 FC 20 has an idle current of 1.75 amps, on but doing nothing at all. The modified sine wave 1000 watt inverter in my '74 Argosy only takes 0.4 amps when doing nothing.

Inverter idle current is all over the map, and cannot be known unless the manufacturer states it in their literature, which may or may not happen. I have measured small inverters (under 100 watt output) with idle currents of 60 mA (.06 amps) to 0.6 amps. Pure sine wave inverters generally (but not always) have higher idle currents than modified sine wave ones).

Some sine wave inverters have a "search" function which shut them essentially off when there is no output load, and switching them on automatically when a load is detected. There is some power used for that search function, but it is quite small, in the range of 15 to 20 mA. I am going to install one of those in my FC 20 this year and use it mostly rather than the power hungry idle factory inverter. I will leave the big one in place for the microwave and toaster I like to use in the morning but use the other one for smaller loads, and leave it on search function all day. The one I have in mind has a 300 watt output, and will not do the microwave or toaster.
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