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Old 07-22-2012, 08:06 PM   #29
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The one challenge that I see is what if you ant to go some place. You would have to disconnect the vehicle each time; not so with a stand alone generator
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Old 07-22-2012, 09:22 PM   #30
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When you start comparing price, watts, weight, price, noise, price, ease of use, price, fuel consumption, it's nearly impossible to beat a Honda EU2000. If you want to run the A/C then you have more to consider. Lots of reading in the generator threads on the best way to power an a/c via generator.
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Old 07-22-2012, 11:08 PM   #31
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The one challenge that I see is what if you want to go some place. You would have to disconnect the vehicle each time; not so with a stand alone generator
Hi, this is something that I'm thinking about because if my next tow vehicle is a pick-up truck, I plan to mount my Yamaha 2400 to the truck bed. I don't think that I would leave my trailer with my generator locked and running anyway.
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Old 07-23-2012, 12:46 AM   #32
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I worked with truck shop service men in my 20's. Those guys had service trucks with semi type engine driven air compressors and storage tanks, engine driven electric generators, and 220 volt electric welders. They could jump start, charge a battery, weld a broken dolly, mount and air up a tire, and power work lights.

Railroad service trucks are set up about the same.
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Old 07-23-2012, 06:42 AM   #33
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A few years ago, when there were ice storms and blackouts in the Northeast, a railroad helped out by running a locomotive off the tracks, down the street, and parked it in front of the local emergency services building. It was hooked up and powered that building and several others for about a week. Having to repair the grooves in the pavement was a small price to pay for having power.

As for the engine mounted generator, I don't think anybody said it was impossible, just inconvenient, inefficient, and not being a good neighbor at a campground. And I've charged batteries and jump started cars and lawn tractors using generators.
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Old 07-23-2012, 08:21 AM   #34
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A few years ago, when there were ice storms and blackouts in the Northeast, a railroad helped out by running a locomotive off the tracks, down the street, and parked it in front of the local emergency services building. It was hooked up and powered that building and several others for about a week. Having to repair the grooves in the pavement was a small price to pay for having power.

As for the engine mounted generator, I don't think anybody said it was impossible, just inconvenient, inefficient, and not being a good neighbor at a campground. And I've charged batteries and jump started cars and lawn tractors using generators.
Absolutely, it is doable, and is done all the time with many of my commercial/fleet accounts, both belt driven as well as PTO (not many PTOs, because these trucks typically also run something else with PTO, like a hydraulic pump, etc.)

As stated above, for our camping application, IMO its benefits are very much outweighed by its drawbacks.
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Old 07-23-2012, 08:26 AM   #35
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Be nice, Carl. All of us are apparently not as keen as you are. I love the question and the answers.
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Old 07-24-2012, 01:55 PM   #36
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Usually a car/truck alternator is not adequate to re charge a battery. Especially one that is drawn down past 10 amps.
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Old 07-27-2012, 11:33 PM   #37
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to run a genset off a PTO, you will need to run some pretty high RPM's. (unless they genset has a reduction gear in it.)

A genset needs 3600 SHAFT RPM to maintain 60hz. that's not 3600 engine RPM, as the transmission reduces the shaft RPM.

I don't know if PTO generators have gearing in them, and don't know what your truck would required for the generator to run that fast. but it should be clear that this isn't the best way to do it.
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Old 07-28-2012, 12:49 AM   #38
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I think the answer is simple... to meet ever more stringent emissions and mileage requirements, adding any more gadgets to the engine that would affect either negatively is a non-starter. The more complicated answer is that engineering a generator that puts out meaningful power, stuffing it in the engine bay, then dealing with the liability issues of people frying themselves just isn't worth it for the small number of people that would ask for it. Having any kind of external, rotating PTO on a consumer vehicle would be inviting disaster.

PTO's on tractors were there because 90% of people used them... the other 10% of people were twisted up like liquorice in them...
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:45 AM   #39
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I have a Landyacht with a Onan generator. The generator has over 800 hours on it. My unit was constructed in 2002 . I am wondering what the life of the generator is.
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Old 08-03-2012, 12:42 PM   #40
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Hi Sodbuster. Welcome to the community..

In general the installed cost of a truck-mounted, engine-driven generator will exceed the cost of a freestanding generator of similar capacity.

I've also penciled out some systems with large battery banks and inverters on the tow vehicle but couldn't make these practical either.

If the main goal is battery charging then that can be accomplished with the existing truck alternator. For people who want to run air conditioning, a freestanding generator is necessary.

I don't have a generator and doubt if I will get one in the foreseeable future. We plan our trips so that we don't boondock when and where there are hot nights where it makes sense to run the air.
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Old 08-03-2012, 02:38 PM   #41
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Welcome to the Forum.

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I have a Landyacht with a Onan generator. The generator has over 800 hours on it. My unit was constructed in 2002 . I am wondering what the life of the generator is.
Hi, I ran an Onan generator in my Mac Tools truck; I got about 5,000 hours on it when I up-graded to a newer and larger Onan. I could have had the old generator rebuilt, but chose not to.
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Old 08-04-2012, 01:23 AM   #42
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There is a system out there though that gives cold air off batteries alone, it's used in the bunks of highway trucks, it uses four batteries and supposedly gives a night of cold air and the batteries recharge by the truck alternator while driving during the day, not sure if something like this could be rigged up in an airstream or not, but an interesting thought just the same.
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