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Old 02-07-2016, 11:05 PM   #1
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New Lance - no generator

We don't have a Lance but are thinking about it. The ones we've been in with a generator running make us not want a generator. That thing is loud.

The EarthRoamer has no generator, has plenty of batteries and solar, and uses the Ford SuperDuty 6.7 and its two alternators (3.7K watt) to charge the coach batteries.

It's probable that some of you use an external generator such as a Honda. That also seems like a viable solution. If you do use an external generator, how's that working for you?
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Old 02-07-2016, 11:17 PM   #2
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Have a 21' TT and brought along two, 2kw Hondas on our trip to the east coast and return. Towing with a 2007 Jeep Grand Cherokee, so the only downside is where to put the gennys and 2 gal fuel tank. I just stowed the gennys and fuel on the floor in the TT. Once parked, first thing out were the gennys and fuel tank. No fuel smell or leaks from fuel tank or gennys as the Hondas have a fuel cap with a vent shutoff you can close for travel. Two gennys give you the option of using the A/C; we only used it twice. One genny is plenty to keep the batteries charged (about 2 hrs/day while boondocking). Hondas (2kw) are light and quiet.
Plan to put 400w solar on TT; that should keep the 2x Group 24 batteries charged. I've already swapped out all bulbs for LEDs.
Good luck!
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Old 02-07-2016, 11:41 PM   #3
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Our first TC didn't have a gen or AC. Years later when we decided to buy a newer one those were two items we decided we had to have, primarily because we used the TC for extended trips across the US often in Southern states and almost never camped where there were hookups. It was also used for hunting, fishing, and exploring. We used the gen to run the AC when it was warm enough to need it, and to charge the batt when we were stationary for any length of time. Our camper is a '92 Caribou and the gen in it is not very loud at all. Perhaps a muffler? A built in gen eliminates the need to find a place to store/carry one that isn't built in and is much easier to use, simply turn it on from inside the camper.

I think the decision would depend a lot on how you will use the camper. It would seem that with the EarthRoamer setup the only thing that couldn't be used without hookups is AC, if it is even part of the setup.

Best of luck with it.

Steve
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Old 02-08-2016, 02:50 PM   #4
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When we bought or Starceaft the underside of the bed was a little to close to the roof of our truck. Using 2X2X.125 square tubing I built a platform to set our camper on raising it 2" I extended the rails about 36" past the back of the camper and covered it in wood creating a small deck. We use it for cooking while standing on the ground. Hanging underneath I put a cage that houses our Honda genny. Going to add a storage locker on the other side this year
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Old 02-08-2016, 03:07 PM   #5
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We have a friend with a Lance camper, and he built a hitch extension to mount his Honda 3000W generator. When he tows his race car trailer, the genny attaches to a mount he built on the trailer tongue.
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Old 02-12-2016, 08:17 PM   #6
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I think it's a good investment to get the camper with a generator - learn to run it when it's not quiet time for you or others around you. If you are conscious of what you're doing, you can run the generator once a day for two hours and keep your batteries charged for use the rest of the day. Sure, I can't use the coffee maker and have to use the old fashioned stovetop percolator, but hey, that's camping!
(and if you also get the camper with the solar panels, you can probably get away with running the generator even less)
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Old 02-14-2016, 08:22 AM   #7
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We've decided on ordering our Lance 1172 without a generator since our Ford F450 came with a 3.7K generator. The Ford generator is MUCH more quiet, takes up no extra room, adds no weight and does not vibrate.
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Old 02-14-2016, 09:15 AM   #8
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Is the Ford genny a separate unit or does the trucks engine run it?
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Old 02-15-2016, 03:06 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by peterson View Post
We've decided on ordering our Lance 1172 without a generator since our Ford F450 came with a 3.7K generator. The Ford generator is MUCH more quiet, takes up no extra room, adds no weight and does not vibrate.
Wow! I hate to be a devil's advocate, but how can a generator not weigh anything? From the literature I see, the F450 does not have a generator as standard equipment, so the carrying capacity of the truck is going to be reduced by the weight of the generator. And how can it not take up any room? The generator in the Lance doesn't take up additional room - it has a compartment specifically built for it, so if you opt not to get one, I suppose that compartment could be used to store other things (that do weigh something...).
I have less trouble believing the generator on your F450 is quieter, because if it's placed elsewhere it won't be heard as easy as the Lance (Onan) unit that is in the camper structure (which also could add some vibration).
But seriously - a generator on an F450? Tell us more!
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Old 02-15-2016, 05:51 AM   #10
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I believe he is talking about the 2 engine driven alternators, equaling 3.7 K watts, mentioned in his original post.

Not sure how that replaces a 120 volt unit for AC and high draw stuff though.
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Old 02-15-2016, 04:55 PM   #11
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I believe he is talking about the 2 engine driven alternators, equaling 3.7 K watts, mentioned in his original post.

Not sure how that replaces a 120 volt unit for AC and high draw stuff though.
Yes, the two engine alternators provide 3.7K which is more than the Onan in a Lance 1172.

The EarthRoamer air conditioner is powered by 110 volts AC and cab be run off of battery power through the inverter for a period of about 6–8 hours (12–16 hours with optional two extra batteries) before recharging is required by either idling the engine or plugging in.

Since a Ford F350 or F450 already has an engine, which powers the two alternators, the Onan and its weight, and considerable noise and vibration, could be eliminated. The Ford diesel 6.7 Powerstroke is very quiet at idle and would have virtually no vibration.

So, we'll be leaving off the Onan and putting two batteries in the bay. If we need to we'll get a higher quality inverter.
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Old 02-15-2016, 07:09 PM   #12
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Personally, with almost 500,000 on my powerstroke I avoid idling for any extended periods. I would much rather spend 2k on a genny than 10k on a engine rebuild
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Old 02-16-2016, 01:06 PM   #13
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I'd have to agree. Idling a diesel for prolonged period of time s a bad idea.
Not mention the smell of the diesel exhaust in camp. (Your neighbors will hate you.)
It's a rather uneconomical idea as well. My Yamaha burns less than a pint per hour. I guarantee your Ford can't come close.
Inverters are power sucking pigs. They are very hard on batteries.
You will be replacing your batteries often if you rely on an inverter to run your AC.
JMHO , I think you'd be better served with a good quality Honda or Yamaha genny.
My Yamaha is so quiet I often forget it's on........And I might add , is vibration free.
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Old 02-16-2016, 01:39 PM   #14
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Wow - interesting plan to say the least (using the truck's alternator to power an invertor to run the aircon, or using batteries to power the invertor). I have some doubts that the batteries will be able to run the aircon for a long period of time - my recent coaches have not even been set up by the mfr's to run the aircon(s) off the invertor (and the generator is over two times as powerful) and I would guess there's a reason...but you may be onto something and should keep us all posted as to how this works out.
And, I've been able to run one aircon in the coaches off a 15A circuit when at the house, even though they have a momentary draw much higher to get the compressor going - so who knows?
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