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Old 06-28-2017, 09:52 AM   #15
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When it comes to electricity and batteries I admit I'm totally willing to defer to anyone who can use a wire stripper with skill.

My question therefore is simply - what are you planning to USE your Airstream for once you've finished it? It sounds like it'll be equipped for a zombie apocalypse bugout survival pod. Having seen the hail and tornados you can get in Texas, I see the appeal...but a semi with an intermodal trailer might be better built for a survival scenario.

Nothing wrong with your choices if you've got the money, time, interest and skills - but it's a long complex job and it is easy to get frustrated. Just an observation not a wet blanket, you could just blow the same amount of cash on a new Airstream and be traveling next week.🎵🎶🎵

Wanna spend long periods off grid? Smokeless Joe did a nifty tow vehicle - a Sprinter flatbed carrying a big diesel generator and a Mini car for running around when he just wanted a daily driver. His thread would make good reading for you. Just search "contemporizing". What impressed me most was that he got all his appliances to run on diesel, even the stovetop.
He also was an early convert to split system a/c units.

Whatever you do have fun!

Paula
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Old 06-28-2017, 10:16 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pdavitt View Post
Bob,

I assume I could use the same 12V battery, if properly specified, for generator start in addition to the items you mentioned. Adding a small 4 stage charger to the system should not be a problem.

Thanks,
Pat
Hi

You certainly could use it for a variety of intermittent power needs. To me the emergency braking is the biggie. It's very unlikely you will ever need it. If you do need it, you want to be sure it works. You also don't want to get into a massive hassle if that's an "inspection item" on a trailer in your state. There's absolutely zero consistency about even if a trailer gets inspected, let alone what they inspect. It's very much a state by state thing.

Bob
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Old 06-30-2017, 04:38 PM   #17
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Paula,

LOL! Loved your post. No, no Doomsday or Zombie Apocalypse scenario. I retired about two years ago from a high stress, project oriented job and moved five years ago to the Davis Mountains in West Texas. I actually "retired" five years ago, but the company kept me on the payroll for another three years. "Working from home."

I discovered I needed a stressful project to so I could really enjoy life again. The stressful part of this project is I am using my own money instead of the company's. I wanted to get a Airstream travel trailer, to mostly, full-time travel the country. Sooo, I decided to design and have built, my ultimate Airstream. I am systems guy so starting with the electrical made sense.

Thanks for your comments, and wish me luck.

Pat
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Old 06-30-2017, 04:51 PM   #18
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Bob,

Thanks for your thoughts. I have designed in a 12V generator starting, emergency brake actuator battery. Plan to keep all the other DC items you mentioned on the main DC breaker panel.

The Outback system has an AUX RELAY out that activates when the system detects an AC source. Going to use this functionality control a NC relay that sets the Neutral/Ground bond. Below is my latest schematic.

Pat
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Old 07-01-2017, 06:33 AM   #19
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Introduced simply as a point of reference, the propane system is the reason we have self-contained trailers. Maximizing that is greatest utility.

As to boondocking, water capacity matters most.

The electrical system is so far down in importance as to be almost negligible. Seriously.

For general camping and extended stays it is the first two that matter.

It's not opinion.

The problems are weight, safety and utility.

Propane can't be touched in this regard.

Start again by reviewing, "what is camping"?

Shirt-sleeve weather. Cooking and bathing. Space heating (minimally, as one is outdoors as much as possible).

Take your time.

I recommend a plan that shows maximum time away from any re-supply to shore up the ends. X-people over Y-nights. No trips to the store.

What this will show is a balanced approach.

The point to one of these trailers is to add some food and clothing to travel. Similar to stock integrated systems.

For someone wanting to recreate "home" as currently configured, a diesel bus is the method.

Solar is a marginal gain at high expense. (Several panels and best batteries is about it fir changes).

Keep reading.

IMO, time spent building may be fun. It'll be years long. And amateur interior design mistakes are the inevitable result (that's a full time staffing position). Practicality will be sacrificed.

Plenty of great trailers ten years old. Modify one instead fir "better" electrical capacity. Go camping, and be years ahead.

Travel is the thing.

Good luck

.

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Old 07-01-2017, 03:04 PM   #20
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Hi

I'm not sure I would do a relay for the ground / neutral thing. One of the great advantages of a fully isolated converter approach is that you can get around these sort of issues. The guys who do this on boats are *very* big on that part of it.

Bob
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Old 07-01-2017, 03:05 PM   #21
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Hi

I'm not sure I would do a relay for the ground / neutral thing. One of the great advantages of a fully isolated converter approach is that you can get around these sort of issues. The guys who do this on boats are *very* big on that part of it.

====

Do indeed consider the inputs above. A balanced approach is a good idea in any design.

(so that's a new bug for me .... weird ....) sorry for the dupe..

Bob
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