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Old 07-07-2008, 02:03 PM   #1
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Trailer Noob - Generator Size Requirement??

Tried a search, but couldnt quite find the answer I was looknig for.

On Thursday, I become the proud new owner of a Surveyor 282. To say the wife and I are excited would be a HUGE understatement Our first trip is a short one planned for Woodstock Ontario this Friday, and then next Friday heading down to Prince Edward Island on the East Coast for a week - with 5 Shiloh Shepherds lol so it'll be a full house.

My question is, to power the unit, say AC/TV/Lights what size Genny do I need? I know the Honda 2000i wont quite be enough, but what about a 2800 or 3000? They have the Yahama 3000 inverter on sale right now for $1900 CAD.

I'm just not sure how much juice I need. I dont want too little, but dont want to blow my brain out for 4000W if I dont need it...

The AC is the standard 13,500. The TV a 22inch LCD...


Thanks again! Will post pics by the weekend once we get the baby rollin!
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Old 07-07-2008, 03:15 PM   #2
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Most folks who can spare the change get two 2000i generators and a connector kit. 4000 when you need it for ac, 2000 if not using ac. Being that they are portable you can use them at home during power outages. Be sure to check the startup draw on your ac before buying anything.
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Old 07-07-2008, 03:38 PM   #3
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Thanks!!! Will look into it and the availability around of the 2000i with the connector kit. Much appreciated!
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Old 07-08-2008, 01:05 AM   #4
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Here is what we bought for our SV291...

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/te...ator&noImage=0

It is fantastic for the price.
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Old 07-08-2008, 08:50 AM   #5
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Woa. $399?

I really like the Honda 2000i idea, but, I'm seeing prices of $1500 per unit up here in Canada. So $3000... gets a bit rich for the trailer noob considering I have all the other things to buy for startup.

Is the sound reasonable enough that you dont have people egging you when it's running lol? Says 68 db, which without having something to compare it to is hard to tell...

Where do you keep it, in the back of the truck, or inside the trailer, or have you rigged something up for the back bumper of the trailer? The 100 lb weight doesnt bug me at all, and something like this might suit my budget a bit better at least to get me going...
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Old 07-08-2008, 10:53 AM   #6
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$399 is indeed the price. I found it on sale at Cabela's for $349 during the NASCAR race back in April here in DFW. They also offer a wheel kit to move the generator around... I would definitely purchase it as well.

The generator brand is Champion and is a Chinese made generator that uses a license on a Honda engine. The features I liked on it were the RV 30amp plug built in, ease of starting, and the price.

I spent a lot of time researching these on the rv.net forum. The thread may hold some kind of record, as it has over 6,000 posts on it! It was hundreds of pages long when I first stumbled upon it. I would start at the last page and work backwards. Lots of debates, discussion, and information there.

http://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fu...d/15131645.cfm

The Champion is a great in-between model... It certainly is a better unit than the budget, entry-level gensets that you can find at pep-boys, etc. And it is not as nice as an Honda or Yamaha Inverter genset.

It really is about 68db under load... We were very concerned about noise with the generator as we would be boondocking a lot in parking lots at softball tourneys. Standing next to it you can easily carry on a conversation. When we use it, I just park the pickup near the trailer, roll the generator on the other side of the pickup, and plug it in. It makes is even quieter. There are even a couple of mods I read about on the rv.net forum to take a few more dbs off the sound level, but I honestly haven't worried about it. We park about 70% with electricity at sites, so this fits our 30% of the other times.

Is it as quiet as a Yamaha or Honda? No. Is it too loud to camp with? No. Is it worth $399? Absolutely!

Weight is perfect for me. I can lift in the pickup bed by myself, but it is also light enough that Mrs. Slpybear can easily help me lift it up.

No problems running AC... plenty of Juice for our 30 amp Surveyor.

One pull starts it so far. I run Stabil in each tank and haven't had any issues.

Slpybear highly reccomends the Champion genset.
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Old 07-12-2008, 12:07 AM   #7
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watts=volts X amps, so 30 amps @ 120 volts = 3,600 watts of generator, be carfull about the lowes or home depot generators as they are 220 volts, to legs of 110, I have a 8500 that powers my big mig welder fine, but won't run my RV unless I unplug the water heater, or something else, and it huge!!! so look for a 120V unit with 3500 or more watts. Also try the discount tool stores online like harber frieght, or northerntools. northern even has RV gensets
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Old 07-14-2008, 01:09 PM   #8
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Hey guys,

Thanks Marksl210 - I appreciate the amp calculation!

Slpybeartx, thank you for such a detailed response! WOW! That is perfect!!! I think I'm going to order it! And thank you for the link.

I'm ordering from Canada, so will have duties and stuff, along with expensive shipping costs, but for that price it's still well worth it.

Later down the road I can move up to a higher end unit, but for now, at least to get me going it sounds like it'll be a super option.


Thanks again guys!
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Old 07-21-2008, 11:59 AM   #9
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Giantfan... let me know how your Champion experience turns out!
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Old 07-29-2008, 09:12 PM   #10
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Check out Tractor Supply Company (TSC) if there is one in your area. They have what appears on their website to be the same Champion 3500 as Cabelas but for $299 in store only. I plan to go to my local TSC store tomorrow and check it out.

Followup - I bought a Champion 3500 watt generator today at Tractor Supply Company for $299.99, which is their normal in-store price. The SKU # is 4434023 if you want to call first to see if they have it in stock.
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Old 07-30-2008, 09:41 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DougDarr View Post
Check out Tractor Supply Company (TSC) if there is one in your area. They have what appears on their website to be the same Champion 3500 as Cabelas but for $299 in store only. I plan to go to my local TSC store tomorrow and check it out.
Wow, if you can pick this up for $299 then that is a steal.

I would definitely also purchase the wheel and handle kit. It is waaay overpriced at the $49 I paid for at Cabela's, but it makes it incredibly easy to move around.

Without the wheel kit the genset would set below the top of the bed in my 2008 Silverado. With the wheels, it sticks up a few inches.

If you can use metal brake or weld a couple of nipples onto plates, then you could probable buy some lawnmower wheels and do this yourself. It was just a rush deal before a tournament for me, so the wheel kit was easy.
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Old 08-04-2008, 12:41 AM   #12
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If you have Checker Auto in your area, they have the same Champion 3500/4000 generator. I believe I paid $249. It was last year and may have been on sale. But it works great and runs everything including A/C. Not as quiet as the Honda, but not as loud as some I have been camped next to.
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Old 08-04-2008, 05:01 PM   #13
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Hi guys,

Just an update.

Was going to get the Champion at Cabella's, but with duties, shipping etc was looking for something in Canada.

Canadian Tire has a sale on this week for the Champion with 4000 peak, and 3000 running. It's $399 Canadian, which is pretty good for a genny up here.

Someone posted on their site that at 68 db it was too noisy for camping, but id imagine if I'm somewhere running a gen that other trailers would be doing the same as there's no hook up.

Plus, I want to craft a hitch so I can have it running as I travel to keep the trailer AC going so I can put the dogs back there (in crates). I've got 5 shiloh shepherds and just did a major east coast road swing with them and it was great except I had two of them under the cab of the pickup and it got a bit warm back there even with the windows open. So, I'm thinking I'll take down the dinette, put two crates on top of there, strap them in, and run with the AC going so they stay nice a cool.

Anyhow, I'm going to pick this up this week as I have another dog show in two weeks that I need it for, so I'll have a report by then.

http://www.canadiantire.ca/browse/pr...=1217887671829



Thanks again!
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Old 08-08-2008, 11:34 AM   #14
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Picked it up last night. Will fire it up this weekend and report back.

Not too heavy, maybe 70 lbs dry weight. Figured I might look to see if there are some tires available for it - just for ease of transport.
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Old 05-13-2009, 10:40 PM   #15
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Wow, that thread over at RV.Net is a MONSTER, isn't it? (I last read it when it was only about 10 pages long.)

We camped next to an RV that was running a reasonably quiet generator (about 70 feet away and pointed right at us). I walked over to see if it was the Champion that we had already made up our minds to buy. It was. It did get a *little* louder as I got within 20 feet, but there were generators 200-300 feet away that sounded louder then this one did at 30 feet. My GPS showed a Pep Boys just 3.5 miles away so we hopped in the SUV and $239.00 later we were back at the campsite. I put some gas in it & thought "this is a cheap generator, it'll probably backfire & rip my arm off when I pull the rope". I eased it up to a compression stroke and very lightly pulled past it, just to see how high the compression was. It went past compression very easily and to my shock, STARTED RIGHT UP! We haven't used it much, but haven't gotten so much as a sideways glance when we do. It has no problem running the microwave for a few minutes without shutting off the 13,500 AC. My personal opinion is that it's a pretty slick deal
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Old 05-14-2009, 11:34 AM   #16
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I bought a Troy built 5500 from Lowes and it is a little heavy but did come with the wheels and a special 30amp to several 20amp cord. I paid $699 for it. One thing I have learned if you are not using it at least once a month whenever you stop it just turn the gas off and let it run out. This helps keep the generator carb from getting gummed up.
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Old 05-14-2009, 11:45 AM   #17
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donjuanns, how loud is that one from Lowes??
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Old 05-14-2009, 08:05 PM   #18
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Do your fellow campers a favor and get a quiet generator; Honda, Yamaha,
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Old 05-17-2009, 11:23 AM   #19
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By the way, 8 DB is a LOT. 20DB is 10 times the loudness of 10DB as it is a logrithmic scale; not linear. So the difference between a 57DB Honda and a 68DB Champion is HUGE. Not picking on anyone's equipment, just pointing out that the difference will make a big difference to those camping around you.
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Old 03-28-2010, 12:04 AM   #20
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Anyone mount the champion or another generator to the front or back of the trailer? Here is a link of some i have seen, but i would like to get some more information and know if there is a lot of vibration to the trailer if mounted.

http://www.modmyrv.com/2008/06/13/rv-generator-install
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