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Old 06-24-2009, 05:20 PM   #1
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Generator for free camping

I just purchased a Safari 27' SE FB. Most of our camping( 65% ) will be free camping with no access to power. We don't plan on using the AC so I was hoping I could get by with a Honda 2000i to help keep my trailer batteries from running down. Any thoughts on this? I do like the idea that the 2000 is truly "portable".

Thanks,

Jitano
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Old 06-24-2009, 05:42 PM   #2
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Welcome from the Florida Panhandle

Welcome to the Forums. We're glad to have you with us.

We have a 2005 25FB, and two of the Honda 2000's. When we are not using the AC or heat Pump, one of the Hondas is quite sufficient to handle everything else and keep the battery charged. We also run the refrigerator on electric at these times.

Brian
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Old 06-24-2009, 05:43 PM   #3
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We have the same trailer and bought the Yamaha 2400. It will run the air or the microwave. It is a bit of a pig to lift but does the job and is not too noisy.
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Old 06-24-2009, 06:44 PM   #4
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New Mexico...no AC?

Your tougher than me. I cant imagine camping anywhere in the Southwest US and not have an AC available. Bet you that you change that idea. I like that Yamaha idea....it gives you the capability at least.
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Old 06-24-2009, 07:56 PM   #5
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Take your time buying a generator. Watch for the sales. I don't have a Honda but I do have a 3000 watt generator I got on sale for under $300. It works great. When I dry camp and run the air I really don't here the generator. Airstreams are pretty sound proof. I camp on my own land so the only creatures that here the generator are the deer and the birds. I only use the generator for making coffee, My CPAP machine and an occasional movie. As a matter of fact a magazine I got in the mail (heart land america ) has some generators on sale. One is a 2800 peak watts for $229 and the other 3500 peak watt for $299.

Honda's are awesome but how much are you going to use your generator? I went for the price. My generator has been working great. I make sure I change the oil and check the spark plug.

HeartLand America

www.heartlandamerica.com The sale ends at the end of this month.

I bought mine on sale at Tractor Supplies Last year.

Brian
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Old 06-24-2009, 08:00 PM   #6
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Generator

I purchased a Yamaha 1000 from U. S. Carb. with propane addition. Will charge batteries, run the tv, not too noisy, no gas stink. I run off a valve on my tanks. Only caveat, gotta prime it with the hidden button a few times to get it to start. I keep it in the truck in a toolbox.
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Old 06-24-2009, 08:27 PM   #7
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We went the Yamaha 2400 route, with the propane coversion. Yes it is heavier than the Honda's, 80 pounds, but it will run the AC and it is less expensive than the 2 2000 Honda setup. And it is WAY quieter than the $300 units you will find.
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:01 PM   #8
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You will not go wrong with the Honda EU2000i. It is a really great little generator.

Like you, I AGONIZED over the decision. I am not saying the Honda is any better than the Yamaha. Best I could tell, it was if you like red or blue. In the end, it came down to which brand my local dealer carried. He carried red, he's an authorized service center, and he matched the best deal I found online. Got mine for $899.

We lost power last winter for 2.5 days. That was a real drag, and it's never happened before. But, I have an oil furnace for backup heat (normally use the heat pump) and the little Honda was enough to run the furnace and a couple lights, or switch to the fridge and a couple lights. The little guy got us through.

I'm still not sure on the a/c thing. So many people on here say a 2000 watt genset isn't enough. The main problem is starting the a/c....it takes a lot more juice to start it than to run it. Some of the Yamaha's have a battery boost feature that will draw power from the generator's battery to give it extra oomph to start your a/c. I think that's an outstanding idea. But, my dad is an electrician and he said all you need is a big start capacitor on the a/c. We put a big start capacitor on my old Coleman Delta T and that baby would fire right up. (in case you don't already know....a capacitor is a storage device for electrical energy....you pump the steady flow of juice to it....it builds up a super charge.....then dumps it all out at once in a burst).

If the studies show the Yamaha will start your a/c and all is well, then that's a pretty hard thing not to like. But I can tell you, as a super skeptic of everything and a technodweeb with a PE in Mechanical Engineering, the Honda is good joojoo.

I plan to get a second one. But for now it does all I need, except the a/c.

Best of luck whichever route you go. Either blue or red is good stuff!
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:39 PM   #9
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I run a pair of the Honda 2000's without A/C I can get by on one. Yamaha's are decent units too. Just have a longer history with Hondas. Be aware of the fact there is a new Honda combo on the market in the 2000ui series. Apparently they can be hooked up without the extra cable, one has a 30amp plug and one doesn't. IIRC it is a Companion series and they whack you some extra money for it.

Aaron
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:44 PM   #10
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I love my Honda 2000. It works great for all I need Microwave, coffee maker, it will run the fridge, keep batteries powered ect. But it will not run the ac. We tried it once and it ran for about 30 minutes then shut off. It has a safety overload so you won’t damage it.
And being only 40 or so pounds it is great. Also it will fit just behind your propane tank cover. I think I had to move the cover about an inch.
Mike
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Old 06-24-2009, 10:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
. . . Be aware of the fact there is a new Honda combo on the market in the 2000ui series. Apparently they can be hooked up without the extra cable, one has a 30amp plug and one doesn't. IIRC it is a Companion series and they whack you some extra money for it.

Aaron
Yes, they do and there is an upcharge in cost. I've checked into it myself. Problem is, the 30 amp receptacle is NOT an RV 30 amp, but a twistlock 30 amp plug. One less cable, but you will need an RV plug adaptor. And the Companion doesn't have the watt meter or the built in circuit breaker that you get with the parallel adaptor kit.

I have a Honda EU2000i and it has performed flawlessly (without A/C). I agree with the red or blue statements. Either a Honda or Yamaha won't do you wrong.
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Old 06-24-2009, 10:15 PM   #12
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I'm with some friends here at Madison and they chose the 3500 generators sold at Tractor Supply for $299.00. Although they are not using the generator at the rally they have used them to run their a/c's without any problems. When I get back to Texas I belive that is the route I will take also.
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Old 06-24-2009, 10:16 PM   #13
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Why focus only on generators? For less than the price of the Honda 2000, you can get a 120 watt solar panel mounted permanently on the roof and a charge controller to go with it. After the initial expense there is no maintenance, no fuel, no handling and no noise.
Go Green. I did this on my 25' Excella and have been extremely pleased.

I also bought a 12 VDC LCD TV that works great with this set up.
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Old 06-24-2009, 10:22 PM   #14
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Hi all. I bought a 19' Bambi last month and am new to the forum (trying to sell my 89 Westy, too). I am also looking to buy a generator for the primary purpose of recharging the batteries and running the TV/DVD now and then. The local tech here said that either a 1000w or 2000w will provide the same trickle charge to the batteries. But, the trickle charge would not be sufficient to recharge the batteries and that I would need a battery charger to actually recharge the batteries.

The Bambi came with a roof mounted solar panel. But, after one night of camping, and a cloudy day, the battery meter was in the yellow.

Any suggestions on how to maintain the batteries while dry camping for 2-6 days would be greatly appreciated.

Rich
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