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Old 02-10-2011, 06:57 AM   #43
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In summer, when it's hot, I'd never consider camping somewhere other than a campground with electricity for exactly this reason. In addition to the human comfort (my wife and I just can't sleep when it's hot and humid), we also travel with a cat. WDCU had a rally in a field last July and it just sounded like hell to me, temperature-wise; even though I have a generator I'd hate to run it as much as I'd need it for that.

I DO use the generator for getting to the destination and providing A/C on the road on hot days. But I generally do not dry camp or camp with limited power, and when I do, I make sure it's in the spring or fall when I don't need A/C.
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Old 02-10-2011, 10:23 AM   #44
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Boon-docking for me excludes established campgrounds. Campgrounds have their own rules of etiquette compared to real boon-docking.

One of the reasons I boon-dock is to get away from people. If someone else is there when I get there, I go somewhere others are not. Even if I don’t want to be alone I usually go elsewhere if there is only one outfit there, because maybe THEY want to be left alone

In the past, when I owned a dog, we sought out solitude so our dog could run free without the worry of infringing on the rights of others. Maybe other times we wanted to be alone just for the peace and quietness.

Point is there is a boon-docking etiquette that apparently many are not living by.

If I seek out a place of isolation because I want to charge my batteries with my generator when needed, for example, and some guy/gal moves in on me, I’m not near as inclined to concern myself with how much noise my generator creates. I was there first, and they moved in afterwards. If they did not know I planned on running a generator, they have no one else to blame but themselves for not coming to communicate with me before moving in. However, I’m still not going to be a jerk and run my generator all night or during times when none of us want noise, like early in the morning or after 8 at night.

I do think that whoever moves in on me are the ones whose expectations should be adjusted.

There is a camping etiquette that should exists – maybe there is a money making opportunity waiting for someone to put it in book form ….
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Old 02-10-2011, 10:51 AM   #45
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Harbor Freight sells this inverter for $159...It's got 2000 Watts continuous and 4000 Watts peak...


It this an option? Anyone tried this, please?
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Old 02-10-2011, 11:15 AM   #46
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The problem is charging the battery! 2000 watts is a lot of power.its 16 amp at 120 volts and 160 amps 12 volts. Your batteries would not last long
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Old 02-10-2011, 10:04 PM   #47
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Boondock be accident?

Hi, we tend to camp out of season, because that is when we can get out, sometimes. On our last trip, we planned on all full hookups. One area was going to be North Rim, Grand Canyon. My brother told us where the one and only full hookup campground was located. When we got there it was already closed for the season. We found a centrally located non-hookups campground. It was nice, had about thirty spaces, and about 25% of the campers had generators. [all quiet models] We stayed for two nights so we could spend our days at the Rim. I wish I had brought my generator so we could have stayed longer. It was cold at night so we had to use our furnace. To save battery power, we used flash lights and stick-on LED lights. We used very little water too. So mostly, we are boondockers by accident. Most always we get out of our trailer, take my car to sight seeing and hiking places, and we are gone all day long; Because of this we never hear very many generators. I haven't camped with anyone using a contractors type generator yet either, but I'm sure I will some day.
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Old 05-24-2011, 11:10 PM   #48
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I prefer camping away from generators, I have 180 watts of solar panels on my roof which is normally enough to charge the batteries and run my wife's CPAP through the night. I often stay at campgrounds where generators are not permitted.

This past summer at a BLM campsite near Moab, with the temperature about 100 I decided to run my Yamaha 2400 to run the AC until the after the sun went down. The sign at the entrance said that generators were permitted from 8A to 8P. The campground with over 25 spaces was empty when we arrived, and I chose a site on the far end. Not long after a family arrived and occupied the closest site to us. I guess that some people don't like to camp alone. After setting up his tent and campsite the man came over to me to complain about my running my generator!
Haha, Had the same thing happen to me at Ocracoke NPS cg. (check my pics) Early May,2010, cg was fairly empty and I tucked my gen. up into a cutout area in the shrubs. It was only running at idle (kippor 3kw inverter) After setup, my daughter and I went into the village for some good seafood, came back and some nut with his wife & daughters set up their TENT right beside me (really, right beside me, like 10 ft from the roadside bedroom window) So I went right over and fired up the genny. I pretty much ran it all the time (except during quiet hrs, 10pm-6am) as long as I was near the camper. Wouldn't you know when I went to leave for home & was packing up, someone (my neighbor maybe????) had cut the aux. recoil start cord! But the joke was on him because the Kippor has an on- board battery and starts with a key! I would have loved to see the look on his face when he heard the generator start up after the string had been cut.
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Old 05-24-2011, 11:17 PM   #49
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The Kippor 3kw digital inverter. Extremely quiet, extremely durable, starts with a key or recoil pull cord, will run most roof a/c units, good on gas and still starts with the original battery at 4 yrs old. Also pretty light, I lift it up into the back of my suburban by myself. Oh yeah, very very affordable compared to honda & yamaha.
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Old 05-25-2011, 06:46 AM   #50
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In our case, we are not really into boondocking. But we did buy a Honda gennie just as a precaution against finding ourself at times with no hookups.

Another time we find it useful is when stopping in cold weather at truck stops while en route. I wouldn't risk leaving the gennie outside al night even if locked, so we run it in the evening to use appliances, watch tv, fully charge batts etc. then run our furnace overnight on the coach batteries. Sometimes I will run the gennie again in the morning for an hour to fully recharge the batteries while we have breakfast.

I have also used it when I need to run 110v power tools at our trailer storage area 15 miles from home, and it could be a handy thing around the house in the event of power failure.

So in our particular case, I think a small generator is a much more viable option than a solar cell installation which I feel just wouldn't make sense for the limited use we would make of it.

I think too that the Honda gennie would be a very easy item to sell at a good proportion of our purchase price if/when we decide we no longer need it. I know because I tried to find a used one before buying new!

We haven't had occasion yet to run it in a campground, but if we did, then at least we have the quietest one available, and and I would certainly try to be respectful for others and run it as little as possible and at reasonable times - only after speaking with my neighbours.


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Old 05-25-2011, 06:53 AM   #51
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We have a Yamaha EF2400 and used it in Colorado (very few hook ups) and it's very quiet. I always asked if it was ok to run it and have never had a problem, I even had a couple walk by and compliment my generator on how quiet it was.
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Old 05-25-2011, 06:55 AM   #52
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Is that Kipor the 132 lbs, blue one? Will that run the AC?

I have been basically forced to use Chinese made tools way too often since we moved here. It's usually the only choice I have. And I have not been impressed with their quality, or their compliance with their own published specifications.

But I am willing to listen to other people's opinions and experience with them. Surely they can build SOMEthing of quality....
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Old 05-25-2011, 07:26 AM   #53
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We have NEVER been "hooked-up". Dock'n Rocks..

If our neighbors are within earshot of our H2000i, unlikely but possible, I will always ask if the noise is objectionable and offer to share if needed.
Courtesy is the best policy.

I do believe most public campgrounds have a genset policy that should be followed.
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Old 05-25-2011, 07:39 AM   #54
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I'm getting confused again. nothing new there, I suppose. But all this generator talk...Honda vs Yamaha vs Chaing Kai Check brand or whatever. Get 1000 if you just want to charge batteries, 3000 if you want to use the microwave and air conditioner, except you can get 4000 cheaper than 3000 if you buy two 2000s....except someone somewhere says you can do it all on a 2400...but it weighs more than it costs....and of course the super boosted HeavyDuty turbo charged F-350 4x4 all inclusive 5000 kw twin boosted model that sips gasoline and will run a small city using nuke fuel is the best of all but you need six bodybuilders to clean and jerk it into the back of the truck.....

What's the minimimum generator capacity that will run the microwave for a few minutes while both the air conditioner and refrigerator are running ? That's really the max load, isn't it?
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Old 05-25-2011, 08:13 AM   #55
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When we camped in tents, I hated generators. But it was rarely a problem because we almost always either drove to very remote areas or backpacked. I didn't have much use for RV's either—most of them were slow and hard to pass.

Times and people change. My knees aren't so good and my back hurts, so we bought an Airstream. I got a solar panel so I wouldn't have to use a generator. There's constant drain on the batteries because of all the electronics and if it's cloudy, or the sun sets early, after a while the batteries won't be enough. We found that out at a NP campground in November where we lived mostly in the dark after a few days. The furnace used more power than the solar generated. I bought a small (1,000 w.) Honda to keep the batteries charged. I have used it a few times and quiet as they have become, they still are noisy. I try to use it when most people are away and we conserve electricity as much as we can—LED lighting makes a big difference too. We don't use it for the microwave. We have a stove and it's a lot easier to use than a camp stove.

Perhaps people who never or rarely tent camped have a different viewpoint on generators. We try to use it as little a possible because we've been on both sides of this.

Like a lot of things, there will be disagreement about this. There are very loud generators and some seem to be installed in giant MH's. They are easy to hate. I wish large campgrounds had separate sections for RV's and tents. We stayed at Yosemite last year in a large campground where tents and RV's were jumbled together. The canyon is narrow and with that and trees, solar didn't do much. That was one of rare places where I had to run the generator for an hour or so per day and we watched our power usage—but the furnace eats batteries, especially after they get older. As for quiet, such a campground is not very quiet anyway and no one complained. And separate sections are just too difficult to manage for a campground operator.

I've also been camped near someone who had to run the generator all the time because they needed oxygen. I didn't like the noise, but inside I could hardly hear it, maybe because I was running the fans to cool the trailer. If someone needs a generator to stay alive, I can accept that. Better that they go camping than sit at home watching TV.

I still don't like generators, but no longer hate them all. As for those slow RV's, I don't drive as fast as I used to or I pass them just like I used to. I wish some of them would pull off and let others by—very few ever do—but now I appreciate how hard it can be to find a safe spot to pull off the road, especially when someone is riding your rear bumper.

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Old 05-25-2011, 08:22 AM   #56
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What's the minimimum generator capacity that will run the microwave for a few minutes while both the air conditioner and refrigerator are running ? That's really the max load, isn't it?
Depends on the size of the microwave and altitude. A 1,000 w. generator runs less efficiently in Colorado and may not run a medium size microwave (800 w.). I tried it at 10,000' and it wouldn't run the microwave or the toaster. At 6,000', it might. You'd probably need 4,000 w. anywhere to run A/C and a microwave. Run the fridge on propane—its probably cheaper than running it on 120 v. with a generator. If you turn off the A/C to run the microwave, a smaller one would work, but whether it is 2,400 w. or 3,000 w. depends on the size of the A/C and altitude. There are threads that discuss the necessary generator size for A/C at exhausting and inconclusive length. We generally stay away from hot places when we boondock. Larger generators run in the 100 lb. area and bringing a body builder with us is not an option.

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