we use everything except air conditioning, high wattage microwave, and really have to watch the furnace blower. Everything else on my OFF-ROAD POPUP including my Ham Radio operations is free game... The only down-side is we have to re-charge the next morning using the generator or it gets dark on us pretty quick... Having installed solar panels would drastic reduce the generator use big time...
Even the squirrels, rabbits, and deers like to see a little Johnny Carson I reckon... I'm told if you don't use it, it goes away...
My Posts are IMHO based on my experiences - PM me Roy and Carolyn
RETIRED DOAF/DON/DOD/CONTR RADIO TECH (42yrs)
K9PHT (Since 1957) 146.52M
2010 F150, 5.4,3:73 Gears,SCab
2008 Starcraft 14RT EU2000i GEN
2005 Flagstaff 8528RESS
fairfax jim - I too had a similar problem on the first off-the-road trip I made with my 2008 Starcraft 14RT.
I was a pretty good ways back in the woods and had to drive thru some brush to get to this cleared out area under a tree where we wanted to setup by a stream. As luck would have I drug off some 12VDC cables under the trailer.
This was a disastrous trip from the start haha..Only one battery and no way to re-charge it and on this trip a couple of 12VDC appliances wasn't working either since I pulled some 12VDC wiring out under the trailer....
When we got back from this trip I decided to start beefing up all things I needed to do to make camping off thepower grid successful starting with the old the ELIXIR converter/charger. I changed it out for a smart-mode PD9260C unit and rewired the whole underneath 12VDC cable scheme. Everything that went thru the floor under a cabinet went into a plastic PVC junction box which was connected to all of the other thru the floor junction boxes using pvc 3/4-conduit. Everything is sealed from the weather, bugs and shrubs...
Got everything fixed up for a four each GP24 battery setup and now can recharge the batteries everyday now using my 2KW Honda generator.
We are very successful now camping off the power grid...
Sounds a lot like what I ended up doing. Addded flexible conduit and junction boxes underneath for all of the existing and new wiring, and then set it up for 2 batteries (used GR27's) with Anderson Power Plugs so they could be easily moved on and off. Was pretty successful charging using the TV with an inverter and smart charger, but have gone to the Honda EU2000i since moving to my travel trailer. I kept the Elixr converter, it was not very good, but it did work & I VERY seldom plugged the PUP in to 120 VAC - usually pulled the batteries (hence the need for 12 VDC connectors) and charged them in my garage.
The wiring was a fright on our R/T from the factory. I know they try to dave a few $ building these things, but this one was really sloppy. I know that it was one of, if not the, first R/T's that Starcraft sold. If I didn't have to pay to store it, I would have kept it for even one or two trips a year.
Jim & JoAnne
2007 Toyota Tundra Double Cab
2004 Starcraft 11RT (Replaced by)
2011 Eclipse Milan 18CK Travel Trailer
I have vague ideas of acquiring this AT Overland flat bed trailer to use as a utility trailer, and then mounting a pup onto it when it's time to camp. Of course, it would have to be custom sized so I can haul two enduros on the front.
It doesn't look cheap, and I can't find a price on it yet, or a weight. It actually may just be a prototype, but you get the idea. The suspension looks great, the hitch coupler sounds perfect, and the materials look to be high quality.
fairfaxjim - I thought it was just me on the wiring... That was my livelyhood in my working days for Uncle Sam and ran a lot of roads with NAVELEX out of Charleston SC.
That was the biggest mess I had seen in many a years... My unit has three major two-inch holes going through the floor and then underneath all those cable just went from point A to point B with no rime or reason. Cables went in every direction to get to where they was needed. They could of at least grouped some togeheter haha...
Then all the ends were connected to other cables using YELLOW twist nuts haha... I just figured it was my professional life mixing in with reality haha...
It certainly is neat now. I used these PVC electrical junction boxes and mounted up side down under the floor. Then I cut a large hole thru the bottom of the box where all the 12VDC cables would come thru.
These PVC electrical boxes come in various sizes and number of outlets. I picked 3/4-inch size outlets. With five electrical boxes mounted under the floor I was able to connect all of them together using 3/4-flex PVC conduit. When done I put the covers back on the boxes. All is completely weather proof now and no holes or cracks whatsoever coming thru the floor. It is also now real easy to run new cables.
Since I still have all of my install tools here I went alittle over and labeled all the cables for what they went to. I had to replace couple of cables as they ended up six-inches to short haha... I use 12-gauge 2-pair (Black-White) 12VDC cables. There is still a could of already installed 14-gauge 2-cond cables as well...
Changing out the ELIXIR got a me a modern power distribution center with five 120VAC circuit breakers ciruit you can convert to 9 circuit breakers by using half size breakers. I also got eleven 12VDC fused circuits with everything under lug nuts and tight. I took my time and it turned out great.
I also used one of these 8-ton hydraulic hand crimper and purchased
good marine quality ANCOR 4AWG battery cable in 25-foot spools and cut my own battery cables for the converter/charger and Inverters. I also used ANCOR ring terminals and dressed them up with heat shrink ends and of course labeled them as well. Might as well go first class haha...
photos from google images
Oh the trailer lights cables didn't look all that bad so I left them all as is... I guess that tells me whoever they bought the trailer frame from did the trailer wiring as well. Then the trailer people did all the trailer appliance wiring ???
I used to tow an axle flipped/lift block and custom springed palamino behind my lifted S-10 blazer on some pretty extreme trails. It was bare bones to the max though no fridge, water nor stove. It was just a place to sleep. I drug it all over the Moab, to include the shaffer trail, white rim and may others that you hear mentioned all of the time, and of course all over the mountain, san rafel swell etc. I never really felt the need for shocks as the leaf springs seemed to pretty much self dampen anyway. It could have used a little more suspension travel though.
Regarding T.Low's pics:
Looks to me like the suspension pivot is up front and the arm slopes to the back. Hitting a boulder (moving forward) would scratch up the arm as it scraped along it, but probably not tear it off. Moving backwards and all bets are off. Looks pretty stout to me, especially how small the trailer is to begin with!