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Old 04-06-2008, 10:40 PM   #1
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2008 27' Safari FB SE
denver , Colorado
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safe to operate genset in the back of a pickup?

Hi folks - newbie question

We are planning to use twin honda 2000's in parallel to power our new 27'AS. We're getting one to start until it gets hot enough to need the AC.

We have a Toyota Tundra pickup w a topper on the bed. If we cable lock the genset to the bed and open the rear hatch on the topper is it safe to run the genset (two in the near future) in the bed of the truck without needing to move them around???

I'm thinking this will be more secure than letting sit out on the ground.

Advice welcomed! Thanks.

Hector & Brenda
The "Luna"tics
2008 Safari SE 27FB - "Luna"
2008 Toyota Tundra
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Old 04-07-2008, 12:01 AM   #2
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Hi, hlopez. First thought was: will the generators overheat while running in the bed with a top on it. Next: you will have to turn them in such a way as to not have anything close to the exhaust like plastic bed liners or other camping equipment. And finally: does the topper have window access to the cab of your truck? You could get exhaust fumes in the cab. [Pets?]


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Old 04-07-2008, 12:13 AM   #3
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Safe? Yes if the hot parts and exhaust don't melt surrounding stuff.

Prudent? Probably not as your truck bed and topper area will pretty quick smell like exhaust and that wonderfull smell may leak into the cab of your truck.
I'd rather be boon docking in the desert.

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Old 04-07-2008, 01:15 AM   #4
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sure, with the back lid open and/or the tail gait open the genset can operate from the truck bed.

others here do that.

i probably wouldn't, at least initially.

IF your main concern is theft, use a cable or chain and lock the genset on the ground to the trailer tongue or a wheel.

some folks attach a metal plate to the bottom and secure that with chain.

the genset will still need fueling, and spilling gas outside is preferred to IN the truck bed.

there is a risk of fire and fumes inside the truck bed,

and IF the truck bed is open EVERYTHING else in the bed is exposed to theft too.

also IF you wanna drive the truck anywhere the genset will need to be disconnected, stowed, secured and so on.

i keep the genset in a relatively sealed rubbermaid container, until needed.

placed on the ground for running, it's easy to service, fill with gas and ventilate on all sides.

i never leave it running unattended so theft is less likely, with me there and a cable lock.

it's covered with a rubber tub when not in use, to protect from rain or random eyes...

and IF i'm gonna leave and the camping area is suspect, back in the truck bed it goes...

that is one of the values of the 2k hondas, at ~45 lbs, they are easy to lift and move around.

IF using a larger genset (4000w models) which are heavy and hard to move, mounting inside the truck bed is a good option.

all of the true things that i am about to tell you are shameless lies. l.b.j.

we are here on earth to fart around. don't let anybody tell you any different. k.v.
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Old 04-07-2008, 03:56 AM   #5
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I run two Hondas. Problem for us is that I always want to run an errand with the truck while DW doesn't. Keeping generators in truck just not practical. Also, they are two noisy to lock to the trailer tongue. Too close. Fumes to near as well. So, I set them out aways, lock them with cable, and secure a screeching motion alarm in place.
Sometimes at night I'll move them back next to the AS.
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Old 04-07-2008, 06:27 AM   #6
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Can it be done? Yes. Would I do it? No.
If you strap your generator near the tongue, you could also get an LP conversion for it/them, and run off the LP that's on the front of the trailer, without having to schlep gasoline around. LP is clean, clean-burning, and can be had at most campgrounds. Noise would not be much of an issue, as if you are running loads heavy enough for the generator to be loud, you'll probably have the windows shut and the air on anyway, so you won't be able to hear it.
BTW, the 2000's weigh closer to 60 pounds, than 45, but they are still manageable.
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Old 04-07-2008, 07:18 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by overlander63
Can it be done? Yes. Would I do it? No.
I agree with overlander. They are also considerably quieter on the ground.
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Old 04-07-2008, 12:10 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by overlander63
... the 2000's weigh closer to 60 pounds, than 45, but they are still manageable.
i've not put them on a scale, but honda spec's them at 46.3 lbs dry.

add 1/2 quart oil and a gallon of gas for the wet weight.

another issue with truckbed positioning is distance to the 30 amp trailer connection.

unless the a/s in question has the 'gen prep' option, which adds a 2nd 30 amp connector at the front...

the genset (in truck bed) will be a long way from the streetside rear plug.

the factory supplied cord will reach but just barely. i use a short cord.

lastly the o.p. appears to be in colorado so they might want to consider

the high altitude carb modification for gasoline, before fiddling with lp conversion.

above 5,000 ft honda recommends the carb modifcation to reduce fuel and improve emissions and performance.

even with the carb modification, they suggest performance will drop 20% at 5000 ft and another 3-4% for each 1000 ft of elevation.

which means a '2000 will offer 1600 watts of peak power (not 2000) and only 1200-1300 watts of continuous power....

switching to lpgas will further reduce power output.

all of the true things that i am about to tell you are shameless lies. l.b.j.

we are here on earth to fart around. don't let anybody tell you any different. k.v.
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Old 04-07-2008, 01:16 PM   #9
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I recently saw a very good answer to your question. An individual had mounted a generator in the back of his pickup with full intent to have them running while he is on the road or parked. The secret was he installed 2 fantastic fans and Max Airs in the roof of the trucks cap. One installed to draw in and one installed to suck out. This allows him to close the rear of the cap which cuts off the noise if he is still attached and operate in the rain while driving or stopped.

Needless to say he has wired the generators through the truck and rear doors to support this arrangement.

Not sure if his had remote start or not but that would be the Cats if he did.
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Old 04-07-2008, 01:38 PM   #10
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That is very resourceful. I don't want to sacrifice all that space, but that sounds better than pitching a tent to house the power makers.

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