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Old 08-31-2010, 04:24 AM   #1
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Angry Explain the generator thing??

Last weekend I had some business in the city so decided to take AS and make a weekend of it. I normally camp in out of the way small campgrounds, 9 times out of 10 I have the places to myself. I have never had hookups, rely on a solar panel and the propane to keep me operational. I have gone 3 weeks on just my solar panel, biggest problem I have is running out of water! Anyway found a large provincial campground just south of Edmonton AB, was really suprised how nice it was. Went with no hookups, everything was fine until the supper hour came along and then I got to listen to the sweet sound of all of my neighbours generators! What on earth do you need those things for? Isn't the whole point of camping to rough it a little? I'm hoping someone can give me a valid reason why, because if you need that much power spend the extra few dollars and go with hookups so the rest of us don't need to listen to all that noise pollution! Thanks for letting me vent!
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Old 08-31-2010, 06:12 AM   #2
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Not sure if it is a valid reason but here are some possible reasons and ideas. However, before I start, if there were electric offered at the CG that does throw a wrench in my ideas.

Reasoning:

-Dinner time = microwave cooking, yuck but to if they like rubber chicken to each there own.
-Air conditioning?
-Charge the batteries and computers before night time.
-Watching TV
-Running a sleep breathing machine

Ok that is all I can think of right now. The other part is not everyone goes camping to get back to nature. I live in the country, no neighbors no noise. I go camping with the wife and dogs to people watch and socialize. If a rally is boon docking that is fine but we bring the gen's for AC (if above 78 degrees or humid ac on; I would rather listen to the gen for a few hours than listen to the Mrs all freakin night about damp sheets) and batt charging. I am very interested in solar and someday I will be a convert but it is over my head as of righ now.

Good vent though, I am sympathetic to your issue.
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Old 08-31-2010, 06:19 AM   #3
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I have solar and it will top off my batteries but when camping ( when it's 100 degrees) I like to have my generator. It's a Yamha inverter and is super quiet! When I was in Colorado I had it on and a guy walked by and complemented my generator and not the AS! A first. I love being in nature but I bought an AS to be comfortable or I'd just keep tenting it.
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Old 08-31-2010, 07:46 AM   #4
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Sure, most of us go "out there" to get away from the noise and traffic and people, and many of us have only sort of "graduated" from backpacking and car camping with tents. So we've come to like the solitude and quiet we used to have, but we have learned that it's nice also to take the amenities along. Like you, I have solar panels, and they keep the batteries up just fine - the limiting factor is indeed water, and I can carry some of that in the truck. The result is that I can be out "dry camping" for quite a while at a time.

That means I'm sometimes going to (and have) encountered weather in which it's cloudy or snowy or rainy for four or five days straight. During those times, the solar panels aren't enough. So then, or when it's hot enough, I too want to either have an electric hookup or the generator for the A/C or for a couple of hours of battery charging. But a.) most campgrounds have "generator rules" that preclude running them into the night, and b.) the only time I've ever even run mine overnight was when boondocking, way far from anyone who could possibly hear the quiet little hum from the Yamaha.

I agree that if you're in a quiet little spot and folks are running their generators all night (especially the louder "industrial" sort), it would be annoying. Think I'd move to a more remote place that I did have all to myself, or on the other hand, to a more developed campground with electric hookups, where no one is going to run a generator ... plug in, charge the batteries, fill up the fresh water, dump the tanks, and head out again the next day! Good luck with the solitude thing - it is a real issue.
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:04 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by lpatkins View Post
What on earth do you need those things for?
Drown out your partner's (or your) snoring?

All seriousness aside, I got rid of my "industrial" for an inverter because I could not stand the noise and concerns for my neighbors. Some people can not afford to drop a grand or more for an inverter though. I think the point about the industrial generators is valid but the inverter types are a much quieter acceptable compromise.

I try and limit my generator use. I try to pick an isolated site and put my generator in plain view for others pulling in to not be unpleasantly surprised. When pulling in next to someone I try and check with them if they will object to me running a generator. That usually greases the wheels.

That being said, if I have a choice between being next to someone with a generator or not I will pick not.

If I had a choice between loud music from my neighbors and the drone of a generator I will take the generator any day. Excepting, of course, The Grateful Dead. Then I pay them a visit with a six pack under my arm and some Jack in hand.

Thinking back to my backpacking days I would look down in distain on someone in an Airstream claiming they were "roughing it". There are probably as many people out there who go camping to party as to find some peace and quiet. Like farting, it is a fact of life.
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Old 08-31-2010, 08:51 AM   #6
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I can relate to your issue but for a different reason. We also go off the grid most of the time. I shoot competitive archery and most places allow campers free of charge. Very nice of the host clubs. The problem is that many of the campers purchase cheap and very noisy gens. We use a Honda 3000 in the back of our truck and it is very quite. Most neighbors never hear it. I guess many folks choose the other because they are so cheap (in more ways than just $)......Tim
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Old 08-31-2010, 09:17 AM   #7
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I'm with lpatkins. It used to be nice to go to national park cgs and enjoy the wildlife and hear the wind in the trees and the birds singing. Now all you hear is generators.

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Old 08-31-2010, 09:43 AM   #8
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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!
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Old 09-01-2010, 04:54 AM   #9
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Thanks all for the replies, glad I'm not the only one with this issue. The thing that really bugged me was that there were full hookups avialable in the same campground for only 3 dollars more a night!! I'm sure that several of these loud neighbours spent that in gas!
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Old 09-01-2010, 07:25 AM   #10
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You can be certain that the loud neighbors spent that in gas!
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Old 09-01-2010, 08:15 AM   #11
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I don't understand running a genset when full electrical is readily available.

I use my generator when I'm boondocking and it's 105 degrees outside, down to 88 at night.

But in Canada, I don't imagine you have that issue.
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Old 09-01-2010, 09:10 AM   #12
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It,s warm outside!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by utee94 View Post
I don't understand running a genset when full electrical is readily available.

I use my generator when I'm boondocking and it's 105 degrees outside, down to 88 at night.

But in Canada, I don't imagine you have that issue.


Here today in Mississauga ,Ontario it's about 31'degrees Celcius.
The hottest summer we have had in many years!!
That a/c sure comes in handy!!!
Yesturday it was 34'degrees Celcius. Yep it's a hot one!!!
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Old 09-01-2010, 09:12 AM   #13
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Do they make swamp coolers for RVs? How about just a wet towel draped over a fan? Might be enough to take the edge off the heat, if it's not Texas-summer hot....
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Old 09-01-2010, 09:16 AM   #14
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When camping in HOT HUMID Kansas I choose a spot with 30 amp service for the ac. In better weather (but cloudy or full shade)I only run the gen for an hour or so to keep the batteries charged. Mostly when people are out exploring etc. Mines quiet but I still don't care for the noise.
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