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Old 01-01-2010, 01:48 PM   #1
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Dual Batteries in Sabre with front spare

I have a new Sabre 31REDS with the spare tire in the front storage area along with the battery. I would like to go to dual 6 volt batteries but the empty space in that compartment seems necessary to get the spare tire out (which is hard to do anyway without removing the tire mount!).

Has anyone solved this problem or do folks just survive with a single 12 volt battery even when dry camping?
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Old 01-01-2010, 09:11 PM   #2
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Really depends on your power usage. If you dry camp a lot or more than just a few nights then you will want the extra battery power, trust me. If you only use hookups where ever you go then it's not a really big deal. If you do want to add more batteries I would come up with a place or a way to move the spare somewhere else. Maybe the back bumper of the trailer if it has one or the bed of the truck? Where there is a will there is a way....
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Old 01-01-2010, 09:51 PM   #3
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I want to be free to be comfortable dry camping up to about a week without having to be stuck running my generator more than an hour or so each day. We have done this with smaller trailers and understand the power conservation issues. The 6 volt solution will give me more flexibility.

I like how the spare is mounted in the Sabre but I intend to modify the mount to make it easier to get in and out. I am just looking to see if anyone has come up with a simple solution to putting a dual, vented battery box in this space without compromising the spare tire access.

I see how it can be done with some metal work and so on but I would rather save myself the work if there is another solution. Simply adding another vented box to the one that is there will interfere with the access to the tire.
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Old 01-02-2010, 01:24 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by poodlepeople View Post
I want to be free to be comfortable dry camping up to about a week without having to be stuck running my generator more than an hour or so each day. We have done this with smaller trailers and understand the power conservation issues. The 6 volt solution will give me more flexibility.

I like how the spare is mounted in the Sabre but I intend to modify the mount to make it easier to get in and out. I am just looking to see if anyone has come up with a simple solution to putting a dual, vented battery box in this space without compromising the spare tire access.

I see how it can be done with some metal work and so on but I would rather save myself the work if there is another solution. Simply adding another vented box to the one that is there will interfere with the access to the tire.
Unless you don't use your furnace I highly doubt based on past experience that just 2 6-volt batteries are going to last you a week without being recharged, either by solar or running the generator. I have spent a lot of time doing the math and you really have to be conservative to the point of major inconvenience to last a week even with 4-6volt batteries which we had on our last rig.

For comparison we now have 6-6volt batteries and 260watts of solar power charging and still have a hard time lasting a week when you have to run the furnace at night to stay warm and we are getting 1 full day of charging out of every 2 or 3 with the solar panels. Dry camping for a week without running the generator for only an hour here and thereis really a bit unrealistic however you might be ablet to if you don't need the furnace. The furnace is by far the biggest energy hog on most RVs

Check out this site: 12 volt side of life For lots of good information and formulas to figure out your power needs.

The problem is that with newer RVs there are lots of phantom loads that draw current and without a really good amp meter it's almost impossible to know what that is.

Good luck with your project, send pictures when you get things installed.
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Old 01-02-2010, 08:39 AM   #5
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Is this what your trailer looks like???
http://crrvc.com/NewFW/NewFW02/NewFW02.htm
The one pictured above has the spare mounted under
the front end.
Can you do that?

Our new trailer is longer than our previous ones. (Sometimes
size does matter!)
I wanted to squeeze as much of it into our existing shelter as
possible so I removed the spare and bolt on bracket from the
rear bumper.
I hung the spare under the front end between the frame rails right
up against the under belly. It barely hangs down below the
frame so dragging the ground is not a worry.
It's out of the sunlight, it doesn't attract wasps, the rear
end of our TT is cleaner and much easier to wash.
Yes if I have a flat it will require me to crawl under there
to remove the large nut that holds it up but I'm OK with that.
(Same size as the lug nuts so 1 socket get's the job done.)
My 2
Good Luck!
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Old 01-02-2010, 09:36 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NWJeeper View Post
Unless you don't use your furnace I highly doubt based on past experience that just 2 6-volt batteries are going to last you a week without being recharged, either by solar or running the generator. I have spent a lot of time doing the math and you really have to be conservative to the point of major inconvenience to last a week even with 4-6volt batteries which we had on our last rig.
I have gone 6 nites on 2 12 volt batteries with no problem in our previoius Trailmanor. We used a Big Buddy Heater in lieu of the furnace, the gas oven instead of a microwave, and no TV. The main things the batteries were used for was to flush the toilet (Thetford recirculating), the water pump, a few lites at nite, and occasionally the radio. I even left the porch lite on by mistake all nite 1 nite.

Were we inconvenienced? Not really.

I agree with NWJeeper that conservation is the name of the game.
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Old 01-02-2010, 10:54 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the advice and ideas. I never intend to go without any generator use but just to minimize it to my convenience and not have to fire it up every day at sunrise (if allowed). We are going to do a test run next weekend at a full service park but run without shore power to learn just what we consume.

If this all works out, we will go off for about a week on some BLM land just with what I have. This battery issue will take more planning and work that I had hoped so it will not happen right away.

If I make any changes, and they seem to work, I will post some pictures later on.
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Old 01-02-2010, 12:22 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by mtnguy View Post
I have gove 6 nites on 2 12 volt batteries with no problem in our previoius Trailmanor. We used a Big Buddy Heater in lieu of the furnace, the gas oven instead of a microwave, and no TV. The main things the batteries were used for was to flush the toilet (Thetford recirculating), the water pump, a few lites at nite, and occasionally the radio. I even left the porch lite on by mistake all nite 1 nite.

Were we inconvenienced? Not really.

I agree with NWJeeper that conservation is the name of the game.
Your Big Buddy Heater is the difference here Mtnguy. I refuse to use them in my rig due to the condensation problem. My dad has a Guardian wall mount radiant propane heater in his Winnebago. I borrowed his rig many many years ago to go elk hunting for a week in near freezing temps. I figured no problem I can run the radiant heater. That evening there was soooo much water running down the walls that it totally soaked the top half of the matress in the bedroom. I didn't know the byproduct of the combustion process of these things is water. That's why they say to leave a roof vent open (as well as bringing in oxygen for the combustion process) but then your letting all the heat out too. Just can't reconcile the idea of leaving a vent or window open when your trying to heat a rig.

Of course if overnight temps aren't getting all that cold then we just bundle up with more blankets and don't run the furnace. However a good majority of our camping up here in the northwest requires the use of heat at some point. That combined with the likelyhood of rain means we can spend a lot more time inside our rig than a lot of people do and that equates to more power usage.
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Old 01-21-2010, 12:47 AM   #9
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6 volt power

I also have a question, what type of battery charger do I need for the 6 volt battery system? thanks
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Old 01-21-2010, 11:46 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by commander ryker View Post
I also have a question, what type of battery charger do I need for the 6 volt battery system? thanks
Hi Commander. This really is a new question and should be posted on it's own instead of tacked onto another post but regardless the answer would be a normal 12V charger.

With 2 6V batteries they are wired in series so they make 12 volts. When connecting the charger connect the leads to the negative on the battery that is connected to the frame ground and the positive to the other battery that is connected to the 12 volt supply line to the RV. They charge together as a "bank".
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