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Old 11-17-2015, 09:10 PM   #15
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Tom, while I agree that the RV industry needs to start moving toward the future, please explain the diesel vs propane hydronic system and cooking appliances thing. Propane is already here and is clean burning. Diesel is only in DP motorhomes, is nasty, doesn't evaporate and is not particularly clean burning.
I believe thermopane (or at least dual pane) windows are available now as an option, but window awnings would be a big plus on the sunny side for lowering heat gain.
I thought the same thing about diesel appliances until I attended the Overland Expo saw some rigs that had them. Talking to the owners they said that there was no smell and that they appreciated the fact that they only has to stop at a gas (diesel) pump to refuel everything.

There were a few different approaches to this as some rigs tapped off the vehicle's main diesel fuel tank, but others had a separate tank to serve the living quarters. One of them, the XP Camper, even had a small diesel tank that stayed with the truck camper so that even when removed from the truck the furnace, water heater, and cooking top were operational.

On a per gallon basis diesel has about 40% more BTUs than propane, which is another potential plus. Even if the engine of the RV ran on gasoline diesel could still be used for heating and cooking and would take up less space than the same amount of propane.
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Old 11-17-2015, 09:13 PM   #16
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Yes! While staying in the Southwest, I wondered why someone didn't come up will an effective shade system for the sunny side. With solar, I don't want to shade the roof, but the living room slide screams for shade. I could get a topper for the roof of it, but something for the side would be great as well.
This sounds like a job for that aluminized bubble wrap, incorporated into an awning.
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Old 11-17-2015, 09:17 PM   #17
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SkiSmuggs

As you note, diesel is fine for motorhomes and pickup trucks (we have a diesel pickup) but is another fuel system to install in a trailer/5th wheel. As noted in an earlier post, the Aussies seem to use diesel heating and cooking.

If you cover the roof with solar panels that have a 1.5" air gap, then you have provided the roof with shade.
However, it's not another system if it's installed in lieu of the propane system in the first place.

Yes, the modules will provide shade, but the amount of heat that radiates off the back of them has to be experienced to be appreciated. I worked under a pole mounted system a few years ago and it was incredible hot.
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Old 11-17-2015, 09:19 PM   #18
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If you're looking for the current state-of-the-art boondocking campers, look to Oz. The Australians have some really cool campers to choose. As an example, look at the Kimberly Kruiser.
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Old 11-18-2015, 05:19 AM   #19
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Tom I do have a an additional 135W Unisolar panel intended again for grid tie that is about 2' wide but 18' that was glued to a roof. It rolls up into 1' cylinder. I have yet to use it. I set it up with Anderson Power Poles and a pair of cheater 120 plugs so I can use a conventional 10ga extension cord, would not be a good idea because of the potential of plunging your panel into 120AC, however it would only be used while boondocking with no AC.
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Old 11-18-2015, 06:34 AM   #20
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However, it's not another system if it's installed in lieu of the propane system in the first place.
And diesel doesn't explode.
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Old 11-18-2015, 08:50 AM   #21
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cwsqbm

Looked at the Kimberly Kruiser site you have posted. It does come with much of what has been discussed: solar, LFP batteries etc. These seem to be designed from frame/suspension up for boondocking.

Reed and Elaine
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Old 11-18-2015, 09:16 AM   #22
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Sounds like you might want it on your 40 ft DP. I would not be interested in anything but better insulation on our current 30 ft C and or the 30ish ft A gas we are looking at as a replacement. Too much money for too many things that are not important to part timers.
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Old 11-18-2015, 04:32 PM   #23
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If you're looking for the current state-of-the-art boondocking campers, look to Oz. The Australians have some really cool campers to choose. As an example, look at the Kimberly Kruiser.
Thanks for the link. I have to agree that they've got most of this pretty well figured out. My only question is why they opted to stick with a 12v system? I'll have to do some reading of their free e-books to see if they answer that question.
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Old 11-18-2015, 04:40 PM   #24
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Tom I do have a an additional 135W Unisolar panel intended again for grid tie that is about 2' wide but 18' that was glued to a roof. It rolls up into 1' cylinder. I have yet to use it. I set it up with Anderson Power Poles and a pair of cheater 120 plugs so I can use a conventional 10ga extension cord, would not be a good idea because of the potential of plunging your panel into 120AC, however it would only be used while boondocking with no AC.
Keep in mind that those Unisolar panels were designed around a 12V system voltage and have about an 18V output. A typical installation connected lots of them in series to get the string voltage up for grid-tied inverters. You won't be able to feed it into your MPPT charge controller unless you disconnect your other module, as the disparate voltages won't work together. Also, the amorphous silicon used in them is only about 1/2 as efficient as a poly-crystalline module per square foot. The ability to roll them up is handy, but they won't endure too many roll-unroll cycle before the internal connections start to fail.
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Old 11-18-2015, 04:42 PM   #25
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Sounds like you might want it on your 40 ft DP. I would not be interested in anything but better insulation on our current 30 ft C and or the 30ish ft A gas we are looking at as a replacement. Too much money for too many things that are not important to part timers.

I agree that the full-time vs part-time expectations are a factor in what one is willing to pay.
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Old 11-19-2015, 08:11 AM   #26
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Ya, no doubt. I can only imagine the design meetings at the major RV manufacturers. They have an impossible job trying to come up with something that will make everyone happy. On top of that, they are working with hardware that is limited (limited width, limited height, limited weight carrying capacity, etc.). Even worse, working with people that are typically "stuck in the past" (I only use cash, will never use that checkbook thing - I only write checks, will never use that plastic card, only 12V batteries for me - LiPo makes airplanes burn, etc.). So, certainly a challenge.

Continuing the 'everyone needs something different' thought, for my purposes, keeping my rig cool in the heat is a bigger problem that keeping it warm in the cold (I follow the sun). I purchased a big roll of 80% UV Resistant Fabric (like this) several months ago with the idea that I would experiment with a "shade system" for a good portion of my rig. I've never gotten around to it and now the heat issue is solved (for a few months) but that was the direction I was headed (shade). The trick, in my opinion, is something that is easy to deploy, quick and easy to take down (big wind kicks up), and is not embarrassing to look at.

Edit: Possibly worth noting, this shade "idea" came to me after making my own windshield sun shades (here) which made a massive different on internal temperature.
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Old 11-19-2015, 09:45 AM   #27
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The Telsa cars would be a good example of why rv manufacturers would have a hard time trying to sell something like this to the general public.
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