One big reason for standalone GPS units that (I hope) nobody has touched on yet:
They make GREAT gifts for people when you have no idea what to get for them.
Yup, you can find great bargains on Craigslist for them, hardly used at all.
I have a 2005 34' Itasca Meridian with a 350 Cat. Model 34H. It's rated to tow 10K. Sleeps 4 adults - 2 on queen bed in back and 2 on queen sofa sleeper up front. We don't have the booth dinette, but if equipped, it will sleep 5.
We normally travel with 2 adults and 3 small dogs. Sometimes our granddaughter will go with us, and she says the sofa sleeper is very comfortable.
But every night is a Three Dog Night!
Is this with a diesel generator, or? Standard as diesel, or an option?
A mud and snow tread is a soft compound. Not going to wear long, or last long. Replace with a highway tread if you are going to trailer with the truck. And get an alignment. But suspect the problem is the M+S compound, it just does not last.
I bought a M+S tire for my 1987 Toyota Xtra Cab, once. I got 16,000 miles out of the set. Went back to Bf Goodrich A/T KO's and got 70,000 miles out of that set. That's how soft M+S tire rubber compound is, and how fast it wears. Even in a light Toyota pickup truck, with no trailering.
yes, they will be easier to carry around, vs a single 150W 12V solar panel. I just leave my 150w panel on the bed, glass side down, to protect it. I do, however, regularly get 8.8 to 8.5 amps out of a poly crystalline panel, and I'd take a poly over mono crystalline panels, every single time... far more amps produced in lower light conditions. Worth the inconvenience to me.
I suppose it works, but so would a roll of paper towels, or something similar to a sun dial. It's plastic, sooner or later, will it crack or break, or the clamps fail?
Easier to just look at the shadow your solar panel is casting and call it good.
I use a staggered block out of 2x8" that I'd back my trailer up on if getting a flat tire, to roughly adjust my solar panel. It provides plenty rough enough adjustments for up and down of the sun in the winter time in the desert. In the summer, the panel gets only slightly elevated on the green astroturf scrap.
The price of that is $10, probably plus shipping, call it close to $20. Spend the $20 on more watts on your solar panel instead. Much better return on the $20 spent, more amps, makes aiming less critical. For you, a good 140 watt Poly crystalline solar panel should cover your basic recharging needs quite handily, if you are running LED lights inside, and being only a little bit conservative in your electricity usage daily.
I had a 120 watt monocrystalline portable... it's fine from spring, summer and almost fall recharging, but was coming up short camping in the short days of winter in the desert southwest. So I went to a 150 watt Poly crystalline solar panel, shown in the picture. Difference at all times, in terms of output in amps, low light, high sirrus clouds, etc, is superior with the poly crystalline panel, for my needs.
I'd change type of batteries from something flooded lead acid to something AGM that can take a lot of amps while recharging, and that doesn't have a lot of internal resistance built into the battery design.
I'd do an equalization charge on those batteries. Do a search here on how to equalize charge. You need to check specific gravity of each cell first. You also need to bring each battery, seperately, up to about 16.0V each.
You might find the voltage from an Iota being better at charging your battery.
I'd recommend at least 160 to 200W of solar panel and an adjustable charge controller for your solar panel that will get you a full 14.8V at the battery terminals, daily, in bulk and absorption recharging modes before going in to float mode.
MEX, that hairpin alternator picture made me think of the windings in the Chevrolet Bolt electric motor.
Of course, that could be a fine generator too, if driven, instead of driving. Makes me wonder what the motor in my e-Golf and the wiring on it looks like now.
I would post the links, but apparently (I guess) a junior member can't post links to ebay.
Search for "3590S-2-102L 1K" for the 1K;
Search "2K Ohm 3590S-2-202L Potentiometer With 10 Turn Counting Dial" for the 2K with a dial.
Junior members not posting links is probably an anti spam filter on RV-net for the moderators, to keep the junk posts down that they would have to remove of shills and spammy advertising.
If I get the meanwell do I need to purchase one these pots?
Depends... on what you want to do with the PSU. If just bulk charge... you could just set it to 14.8V for a FLA battery and watch the amps, and call it good.
If you plan on adjusting the settings for absorption charging and float charging, it takes really steady hands to get the proper setting on a 270 degree pot.
If you absorption charge and top charge with your solar panel and adjustable charge controller on the solar panel daily, then it's fine to just leave the setting at 14.8V on the existing pot on the MeanWell /MegaWatt.
This is a manual setup... it's up to you to figure out what your needs are and accurately put together how you are going to get there. If you adjust the voltage a lot, the 10 turn pot mod is the way to go. If you just bulk charge, the stock pot may be just fine.
Having gone to a industrial grade 8 year warranty 150 amp hour Telecom surplus AGM battery that takes only 21 amps when charging, has an acid surplus, and has very thick lead plates, at 105 lbs of weight for 150 ah, you would be correct in saying I no longer need to float charge. Reason being that AGM batteries have aa very low monthly loss of charge, compared to FLA batteries.
My procedure now is to set the voltage to 14.40 V on the Meanwell, and watch the amps come down to 0.75 amp charge rate... a 0.5% rating of the battery ah capacity, and shut things down, as well as disconnect everything. I should think that 3 months of storage is fine in the winter time, I will apply a recharge the 1st of the month in the warmer 4 or 5 months here in So Cal, to stay on top of maintenance charge. If I get 8 to 10 years out of the battery, I'll consider the AGM money as money well spent. I consider the money spent buying the Mega Watt, the inline RC watt meter as something that will outlast me. If I have it go bad on me, oh well, better $55 than $155. It does exactly what I ask of it, nothing more, nothing less, no surprises.
Great, thks for the link
Is there any difference in using this 500 Ohm versus the 1K Ohm versus the 2K Ohm variants? From reading all the threads I see all three potentiometers used at various times (albeit on different PSU's).
You guys seemed to be having a good time building these things :)
Sensitivity to settings. The 500 ohm is most sensitive, range wise, making it easy to maintain voltage either way of the locked setting. The 1000 ohm is a little touchy, the 2000 ohm even more touchy, to having to be exactly on the mark to get the regulated voltage you want. Turned all the way up, the Megawatt will deliver 15.56V, turned all the way down, I think it got down to around 11.5 or 11.6V, useful if used as a power source for a 75 watt Ham radio like my Kenwood 2 meter unit, just set it at 12V and call it good, and don't burn up any parts on the radio being overdriven.
What I can say is that the 500 ohm unit works fine and keeps my 30 amp MegaWatt in complete regulation, at both ends of adjustment. Verified and measured by SCVjeff with a Fluke Digital multimeter, when placed under load.
You do need to know what you are doing, wire wise, heat sink wise, and solder wise, pulling the old pot off a circuit board, and resoldering in the new wire. Someone wise with Ham radio's at your local Ham radio club and modding them probably has all the right equipment to do such type of work on electronic circuit boards, and do it right the first time. If need be, pay them for their services. Add a RC watt meter in line for recharging batteries, it's a valuable addition to knowing exactly what is going on with your batteries while recharging, once you gain some experience with it. Some might call it geeky, I consider it a necessity, knowing how many amps the battery is taking while recharging, and voltage also, as well as cumulative amps recharged.
Yes, ignore my posts, while at the same time remembering the fact that everything I say is true,....except the few post that really were made made to agitate a little.
It has always been said "you can't fix stupid", and the last few posts prove that to be fact for sure.
I am glad that there are a couple here that really do know what they are talking about,....(not including mex, niner, and yaht) I respect them, and I do still learn from them.
It seems that there is a growing number of battery fryers, that they could form a "Battery Fryers Club" of their own. That seems to be their whole life anyway, mite as well form a club and get some real recognition. But on 2nd thought, where would I then come every morning for my comedy of the day.:(
Where you make your mistake is in believing the battery charger manufacturers specifications. They don't warranty batteries.
Ask the battery companies what their batteries need to fully charge, and you'll get the real specifications. 14.8V for most Trojans, US batteries need 15.3 Volts to fully charge. Take your pick as to who you want to call a liar. The ones who warranty charge controllers, or the ones who warranty your battery. Maybe it's beneficial for both of them to screw you and keep you in the dark on the truth?
No one here in this thread has commented ever about "roasting their battery".
What they have commented on is getting 500 or more deep cycle recharges out of their battery using proper recharging methods, techniques, etc, and the one method that comes up consistently is that they all recharge and set the voltage manually to get all those recharge cycles. They all do thorough equalization charges when necessary. What they don't use are charge controllers that offer nothing but promises or multiple stages of charging that are "set it and forget it". This is because in day in and day out dry camping use, the set it and forget it crowd ends up losing battery capacity in short order, within a week or two, of using the fancy 3 or 4 stage chargers, most of which are or were designed to be pedestal queens, tethered to a pedestal, day in and day out, not to a generator for an hour or two a day in the morning and evening.
Two things I know for sure... my WFCO 8955 smart charge controller is dumb, and my Walmart Deep cycle battery was useless to me in less than a year, using the WFCO.
Another two things I know for sure is the well used Trojan T-1275 that was left for dead at the golf course, I got another 2 years of life out of it for free. How? I top charged it at 14.8v. Then I had to equalize charge it to 16.0V, three times, before the Specific gravity was where it was supposed to be on all 6 cells.
I bought and sold a PD 9245 with wizard pendant, it didn't do the job, 14.4V was not enough.
I bought a MegaWatt 30 amp PSU and a RC watt meter and started charging at 14.8V. Lo and behold, that worked for me to bulk charge.
I bought a 150w poly solar panel and an adjustable voltage charge controller. Not only did it top charge, but I could equalize charge with it also, set at 16.0V for an hour or two in the early afternoon, if needed.
Two more years out of a free golf cart industrial grade battery, left for dead, properly recharged at the correct voltage.
So yes, some batteries can be resurrected from the grave for a bit... the the true deep cycle brands that have been mistreated by 3 or 4 stage charge controllers for a bit of their life, before finally being treated and recharged right and correctly. Not the Walmart stuff or car jar shaped and "GROUP 24,27, 29, 31" labeled garden variety batteries sold at most retail outlets.
I get my industrial grade and strength batteries at specialty shops nowadays. With good reason. Far better longevity and value per dollar spent, per year of life. My TT never sees a power pedestal.
YMMV, I no longer waste my time or money trying to make silk purses out of sows ears.
As for your wire gauge recommendations... someone is going to burn something down following your recommendations, sooner or later. There's cutting corners, and then there's gross negligence. Your wire recommendations fall under the second category for people that have no business wiring anything, without understanding the theory and load calculations behind what they are doing.
I'd hate to be in a car, an airplane or a space ship wired by you.
I also added a 10 turn potentiometer, replacing the tiny one on the circuit board which required a jewelers screwdriver and a fine tough to adjust voltage. The Tiny potentiometers are rated for only 100 cycles through their range,IIrc and I would have quickly wore one out.
Any part number recommendations/sources for this to go with a MegaWatt S-400-12?
TKS, Keith500 ohm 10 turn pot
Everyone is missing at least one point. You run a truck/generator where we can hear it after suitable quiet time, 11PM works for us, even in a remote boondocking situation, you WILL be shut down....really. Been there, done that.
Does that include Walmart parking lots while overnighting?
I don't think the solar is throwing off the "boondocker" converter since it doesn't seem to change how much amps or volts I get out of it if the sun is shinning or not.
I am still waiting to hear back from Randy, will probably have to try calling again once some of this snow melts. If he warranties it I will probably go with a progresive or Iota converter. The only issue I am not sure about is my boondocker is a converter powercenter meaning it has the fuse panel built into it.
I will end up getting some sort of a manual charger regardless since I think I prefer that and like the control it gives me. Which Meanwell should I be looking at for my 2000 watt genny?
Why don't you disconnect your solar from your batteries, and just try charging with the Boondocker, and measure and see what the results are, instead of assuming?
If I was REALLY worried about overcharging with my Honda Eu Generator... I'd premeasure 6, 8, 10 ozs of gasoline, what ever it uses in an hour and a half, or whatever, pour it into an empty fuel tank, and then start the generator up and let it charge until it runs out of fuel, and doesn't overcharge the battery.
No more worries about babysitting. Such a difficult concept for an engineer? KISS principle works, every time.