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Old 08-15-2016, 09:10 AM   #15
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The thing about using an unbonded inverter generator is that the earth/neutral is the thing that makes much of the shock hazard.

For example, the "energized shell" that we often hear about is almost an impossibility with an unbonded generator.

Since the shell of the trailer and all within the trailer is not energized, much of the reason for employing GFI circuits is not in play.

In other words, with the shell of the trailer not effectively providing half of the circuit, the chance of electrocution is drastically reduced from the get go.

That said, dropping a blow dryer in a sink or tub full of water while a body part is in the water would be an exception where GFI would provide a serious advantage.






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Old 08-15-2016, 09:46 AM   #16
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What has happened to us that we need a generator to power a hair dryer, while boondocking?


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Old 08-15-2016, 10:36 AM   #17
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What has happened to us that we need a generator to power a hair dryer, while boondocking?


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Old 08-15-2016, 10:57 AM   #18
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Different people, different uses and expectations.....

I have been "boondocking" at my place of work for about the last 100 days. My wife expects to use her blow dryer....

(We are plugged into electric)


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Old 08-15-2016, 11:43 AM   #19
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I'm no electrician but I've done a lot of reading on the topic and I while I have done a lot of reading by what looks like qualifed spokesmen, I'm still a little uneasy with this concept.

In my simplistic mind I see some repetitive statements.

First some surge equipment and GFI outlets will fail to work correctly in an RV if you use a portable generator and do not have a neutral/ground jumpered plug.

Second, grounding rods are unreliable means of grounding a portable generator.

Thirdly if you are using a portable generator as auxiliary power in a home with the generator running through a transfer switch, the ground will be supplied by the grounding bus within the home's power box. In that case you should not use a neutral/ground plug in the portable generator. I assume in this case that the home has proper wiring with grounded outlets and that the devices you use have grounded plugs.

I feel comfortable with the third paragraph regarding the use of the generator at home with a transfer switch. The other two items, I'm still not comfortable with.

My backyard neighbor is a retired electrician. I'm going to have a sit down with him and see if he can clear this info with me.

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Old 08-15-2016, 01:39 PM   #20
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I am not an electrician. I do have a 12 KW diesel generator on my boat. I asked an ABYC Certified marine electrician about the grounding. He said there was no need to ground it. The neutral and ground are bonded inside the generator. What the electrical theory behind that is I do not know, but it works.
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Old 08-15-2016, 01:41 PM   #21
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This simple illustration might help.

When the system is bonded, if a person touches the body of an Airstream (or anything conductive connected to it) and the black wire anywhere, a person will get shocked.

If running an unbonded generator, touching the shell of the Airstream and the black wire, this will NOT cause a shock, assuming that the trailer electric system is otherwise wired correctly.




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Old 08-15-2016, 01:50 PM   #22
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I am thinking that if electrical engineers had it to do over again with a strict "safety first" mindset, our power grid would not be designed with the neutral leg tied to an earth ground.

I think that was a compromise to the cost of copper right from the get go.


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