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Old 02-08-2016, 11:55 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alano View Post
Why don't you pick up an inexpensive 600 W inverter, so you have 110 V available inside your trailer for your computer and MIFI? Select an inverter that has a low quiescent current drain while on.
I'm confused, do you mean that airstream doesn't put an inverter in these trailers?
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Old 02-08-2016, 12:09 PM   #16
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We purchased the Renogy 100w suitcase panel. Purchased a connector, cover and fused wire on Amazon. Coils of 10gage black and red wire and flex tube at a local auto parts store. Soldered the wire into the connector tabs, assembled the tabs into the connector housing noting polarity. Mounted the connector to the battery box and ran the wires directly to the battery terminals.
The trailers inverter will run the tv or charge phones or tablets.
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Old 02-08-2016, 12:11 PM   #17
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I have a 19 foot Flying Cloud and don't use much electricity when dry camping beyond lights. However, I do a lot of work on the computer, and the batteries in the AS do not charge laptops or my Verizon mifi.
My batteries do. You can purchase 12V plugs for both the mifi and your Laptop. This is how I do things.

I used WeCharger 12V plug for our MacBook's and have for over a year now. For PC's you'll need to do a little more searching on Amazon, but they make them.

You can use a Pawtec Mini USB plug for your Verizon Mifi

Then you just need a way to recharge your batteries.
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Old 02-08-2016, 01:06 PM   #18
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We invested in a GoalZero unit a while back and it has solved all of our electronic issues when boondocking. I work online, so I need to keep my computer, etc, charged when we are travelling.

http://www.goalzero.com/power-packs

We have the Yeti 400. We fully charge it before we leave home and it will charge our electronic devices over and over again before it needs to be recharged.

One great and unexpected bonus is that we can watch movies while boondocking by plugging the TV and DVD player into the Yeti. Pre-Yeti, we would have to run our generator to watch a movie, which we hated and wouldn't do. It's been well worth the investment!
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Old 02-08-2016, 03:15 PM   #19
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LBelle, when I plug my laptop or iPhone into my wall outlet in my AS when the trailer isn't hooked to electricity, the devices don't charge.
Kayt...

None of your 110 outlets are "hot" when you are not plugged into shore power or a generator. This is why your laptop and phone are not charging when you plug them in when not on shore power.

Some Airstreams are factory-equipped with inverters which convert 12v power to 100v... but in that case the inverter has to be turned on and then only certain outlets are powered by the inverter. Your rig may not be equipped with an inverter. (INverters are not to be confused with CONverters ...the latter is the power manager of your rig and converts 110 shore power to 12v and charges your rig's 12V batteries.)

If your rig has an inverter installed you can turn it on before it can be used... if it does not have an inverter you can have an after-maket inverter installed...or you can acquire a small inverter that plugs into a 12v socket.

Our 19' IS equipped with a factory 600 watt inverter...the on/off switch is on the wall left of the stove top and holding tank monitor panel.

Hope the helps.
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Old 02-08-2016, 08:38 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by KristiBear View Post
We invested in a GoalZero unit a while back and it has solved all of our electronic issues when boondocking. I work online, so I need to keep my computer, etc, charged when we are travelling.

http://www.goalzero.com/power-packs

We have the Yeti 400. We fully charge it before we leave home and it will charge our electronic devices over and over again before it needs to be recharged.

One great and unexpected bonus is that we can watch movies while boondocking by plugging the TV and DVD player into the Yeti. Pre-Yeti, we would have to run our generator to watch a movie, which we hated and wouldn't do. It's been well worth the investment!
I have seen this suggested elsewhere and frankly I still don't understand the usefulness. You essentially are just bringing an extra battery that cost you $450. For that same $450 you'd be much better off - in my opinion - investing in solar as a way to charge the batteries that you already have in your trailer. Or if you have a means to charge those batteries, then spend the money upgrading the battery bank to hold more of that charge (amps).

Now if you wanted to take the Yeti 400 so you have power away from your trailer that's a different story.
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Old 02-08-2016, 08:47 PM   #21
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kayt, just to be sure you are following along, what we are saying is to buy a small inverter like this 200w unit. You would then plug that into the 12V socket by your stereo. You really could use that to charge your laptop, phone, and tablet.

(If you have a car charger for your phone and tablet that you can plug directly into the 12V socket, you can do that because it will be a little more efficient)

If you wanted a larger inverter to power additional items, you'll have to step up to one that gets hard wired directly to your batteries. This is the only part that would be complicated, and frankly it's not that complicated if you are somewhat mechanically inclined and can read directions. Or have someone local that can help. An inverter like that would typically be in the 600W to 1000W range. I wouldn't go much larger with the stock battery bank.
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Old 02-08-2016, 09:22 PM   #22
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I have seen this suggested elsewhere and frankly I still don't understand the usefulness. You essentially are just bringing an extra battery that cost you $450. For that same $450 you'd be much better off - in my opinion - investing in solar as a way to charge the batteries that you already have in your trailer.
Certainly, to each his own, but we have solar that tops off our batteries and have still run our house batteries down at night watching a movie with those parts plugged into the inverter. (Discovered this the hard way, when the furnace fan couldn’t come on one cold night.) We’ve also spent many foggy days boondocking at the coast when the solar had little effect and we were forced to run our generator to recharge our house batteries after running them down using our inverter to recharge laptops.

The Yeti has seamlessly solved all of that. We can plug anything into it – USB devices and regular wall plugs. Would buy it again in a second.
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Old 02-08-2016, 09:26 PM   #23
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Scott, thanks for the link to the 200v inverter-- that looks like just what I need (my laptop and MIFI both have plugs, not USB charge cable).

TBRich, thanks for the instructions on how to find the factory inverter-- it doesn't look like I have one because there is no extra switch near the Systems Monitor.
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Old 02-08-2016, 09:38 PM   #24
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Your Verizon MIFI operates on USB 5.5volts. You can get a cigarette lighter plug at Walmart and many other places, with a USB output, that will run your MIFI. Your laptop is another story.
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Old 02-08-2016, 10:46 PM   #25
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Certainly, to each his own, but we have solar that tops off our batteries and have still run our house batteries down at night watching a movie with those parts plugged into the inverter. (Discovered this the hard way, when the furnace fan couldn’t come on one cold night.) We’ve also spent many foggy days boondocking at the coast when the solar had little effect and we were forced to run our generator to recharge our house batteries after running them down using our inverter to recharge laptops.

The Yeti has seamlessly solved all of that. We can plug anything into it – USB devices and regular wall plugs. Would buy it again in a second.
At the end of the day all you have done is added an extra 33 amp hours to your battery bank with no ability to charge it short of your generator or shore power.

You wouldn't be much short of that switching your group 24 batteries to group 27 and you'd be over double that by going to 6v batteries.

Still not understanding the benefit but I'm glad it's working for you.
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