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Old 11-26-2013, 12:43 PM   #1
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What's my best quick battery setup for this weekend?

Hi everyone!

I've been offline for a little while because of a move and some other fun.

Me and my partner are getting ready to head out for four days of camping (without hookups) with our A122TH.

Nightly temps will be in the mid-twenties and daily high around 50 degrees f. We'll be running the furnace a lot.

I have tomorrow to grab something better than the poorly regarded Interstate Group 24 battery that came with our camper.

I probably don't have time to upgrade the A122TH to a dual batt setup so I'm planning to just buy a good battery that will fit in the current box and bring the Group 24 battery along. Or since I hope to eventually upgrade to a dual battery setup, maybe buy two better batts and leave the G 24 at home. I have no way to charge a battery outside of through the trailer to TV hookup.

I have local Interstate Batt and Batteries Plus stores.
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Old 11-26-2013, 01:45 PM   #2
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Make sure you take the extra battery with you. A group 27 might not fit in your 24 case. When you leave home make sure both batteries are fully charged. If you are going to move up to 27 then buy the 2 now together if your going to combine them. For now I would take a pair of jumper cables with you. Hook the 2 together Plus to Plus and minus to minus. Your power killer will be the furnace motor. I would still take the fully charged 24 with you, you never know. You can also go to napa auto, they will make you up the wire that you would need with ends attached, even if you do not have time to mount the box, you can leave it on the ground connected together. Be careful with your light useage unless you went to led already. Have fun and Good Luck on your trip. It will take quite awhile to recharge your TT with the tV regulator. Do you have access to a small generator and charger? That would then be worry free. I'm telling you that furnace blower is your shortest link in your plan.
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Old 11-26-2013, 02:39 PM   #3
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In reply to gljurczyk:

Thanks.

So hooking two G 27s in parallel using jumper cables. That's something I didn't think of.

We don't have and won't be running a generator. This weekend will be our toughest test, because our camper isn't setup the way we want yet and I have no way to charge batteries (since I'm between homes and I forgot to bring my Battery Tender with me). We will eventually have a solar panel to help out.

For light usage, we'll focus on using battery powered lights.
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Old 11-26-2013, 03:37 PM   #4
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Two 6v Batteries in Series?

Just got off the phone with one of the battery sources locally and it sounds like they have everything on hand to allow me to quickly convert my trailer to run on two 6v golf cart batts in series. Two boxes which will have to be notched to allow cables to pass between them, the cables and the 6v batts.

The sales guy there used to work at an RV service center and he said it would be far better than any 12v setup, though in my mind, it would be like running a single 12v batt in terms of a batt failure. At least if you were running two 12v batts and one failed, you'd have the other. That said, we'll be off the power grid for many 3-4 day weekends and it's really what we bought this camper for so the extended usage found in the dual 6v setup is probably what we need. I assume they'll charge with solar just as well as anything else.

Thoughts?

(edit to add) I've read about this setup before but as I stated, I don't have a lot of time before this trip. This sounds like it could come together quickly though.
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Old 11-26-2013, 04:38 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canyonlands View Post
Just got off the phone with one of the battery sources locally and it sounds like they have everything on hand to allow me to quickly convert my trailer to run on two 6v golf cart batts in series. Two boxes which will have to be notched to allow cables to pass between them, the cables and the 6v batts.

The sales guy there used to work at an RV service center and he said it would be far better than any 12v setup, though in my mind, it would be like running a single 12v batt in terms of a batt failure. At least if you were running two 12v batts and one failed, you'd have the other. That said, we'll be off the power grid for many 3-4 day weekends and it's really what we bought this camper for so the extended usage found in the dual 6v setup is probably what we need. I assume they'll charge with solar just as well as anything else.

Thoughts?

(edit to add) I've read about this setup before but as I stated, I don't have a lot of time before this trip. This sounds like it could come together quickly though.
6 volt in series would be better but 2 6 volt will only be the same as a 1 12volt. You need to check the amp hrs. of 2 12 volt compared to the two 6 volt. Your amp hrs is what you are looking for. It would take 4 6v to equal the amp hrs. do you have the space for that plus the weight? I'm not sure what a 6 volt amp hrs that it will put out. You are right if you have the space.
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Old 11-26-2013, 04:45 PM   #6
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At the temp you are talking about, I get 2 nights and could get a 3rd If I needed on one group 27 battery. I double if you would get 4 nights on one battery. I would think you would get 4 nights with the 2 6V battery and I know you will get 4 night with two group 27. I would take the Group 24 you now have as a back up and cables to attach if needed. I also have LED lights.
If the night time temp is closer to 40* you should not have a problem with 4 nights on one battery. I set the temp to 58*
Being you are short on time, I would just get the batteries that I would use in the future, and get cable to run the battery from the ground and not worry about having them mounted.
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Old 11-26-2013, 05:24 PM   #7
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If cold weather dry camping is infrequent, you could start with your current setup and take along a group 27 battery. When the 24 is run down, disconnect it and hook up the group 27. When you get back you can place the 27 permanently on the camper and keep the 24 in reserve.

One concern I'd have is the tongue weight with two heavy golf cart batteries. My A122S tongue weight is in excess of 400# with a single group 24. Check the hitch weight rating on your 4 Runner and the weight of stuff on your deck to see if you have enough leeway.
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Old 11-26-2013, 05:36 PM   #8
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In reply to Pooneil

Good point Tom.

The hitch limit of our 4Runner is 700 pounds. It sounds like two group 27s would work for our needs but that they wouldn't likely fit within the factory battery bracket.

Winter is our main usage for the camper because we backpack in the summer.

The sales guy at Interstate said two 6 volts in series would more than double the AH. Is he wrong? Are two G 27 in parallel typically better than two 6 volts in series when it comes to AH?
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Old 11-26-2013, 07:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Canyonlands View Post
Good point Tom.

The sales guy at Interstate said two 6 volts in series would more than double the AH. Is he wrong? Are two G 27 in parallel typically better than two 6 volts in series when it comes to AH?
He could be right, without looking at number, I would say they are about the same. Most would say the 6 volts are a better battery. I like the two 12V battery as I will run one and when it is done I know that I should have that much time left on the other.
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Old 11-26-2013, 09:01 PM   #10
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Confound IT!!!!!!!!!

After taking a trip over to where we have our camper stored, I see this is going to be more complicated than I remember.

1) The factory rails that the battery tray fits into is certainly wide enough for a second battery.
2) The 1 factory group 24 battery tray is offset to one side.
3) ******* The other side placement may be bungled by the fact that the propane hose runs right through that airspace rather than being neatly guided along the frame.

Looks like tomorrow I'll be picking up two batteries(G27 or 6V), one(dual batt) or two battery boxes and throw them in the back of the 4Runner. Leave the G24 in place to drive to our destination and then throw the two batts from the back of the 4Runner, onto the A122TH's deck and use them one at a time. Then later get a dual battery setup installed on the tongue(which will likely be with them turned sideways).

Question still remains: Which is better for a long time off the grid? 1) Two Interstate 6V batts ran in series. 2) Two G27s or heck, even G29s ran in parallel.
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