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About kinseypw

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 07/15/1951

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    fulltime living, solar power, internet

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  1. LED lights... not there yet

    Got to agree with docj, check lumen output. When I was first replacing incandescents in my rig I bought "superbright" LEDs from China and one batch was half as bright as the other. For T10 bulbs I look for 200-300 lumens. I prefer 3500-4000K color but with 5-6000 for task lighting (above my desk for example). I have had great luck buying on EBay and paying $1-2/bulb
  2. Dometic NDR 1292 Not Cooling

    We have had this happen a couple of times in 3 years with our Dometic unit. I switched the frig off and let it some to room temp, then reconnected and turned on propane. I monitored cooling by putting a meat thermometer probe against the cooling fins. On our unit it gets down to 32 overnight but you can see some drop in temp fairly quickly - 10-15 mins
  3. We have friends, a couple, that fulltime in a truck camper with 3 small dogs. They used to drive truck together and they tell me the TC is luxurious compared to the sleeper on a semi. personally I couldnt do it. I guess that is the most important part - its about you and your comfort level. I know many people fulltime in modified 3/4 ton vans so it is possible. You may need to experiment and rent a unit for a week or 2 to get a feel for it
  4. Best boondocking batteries?

    Wanted to say a few words about Roll batteries. we have 2 S-550 ( 430Ah, 12v) and have been using them for the last 4 years. We are very happy with them. We boondock most of the time so our batteries are being used constantly. I only bought them because they were on sale and about $100 cheaper than Trojans but i have never regretted the decision.
  5. Inverter Question

    I think Yaromes suggestion is excellent. When I first set up the solar and battery system for our RV I deliberately chose an inverter with an output power block as well as the conventional 15 amp sockets. I cannibalized a 30amp adapter cord to provide a 30amp socket that I then wired to the power block and used this to plug in the main power cord for my RV. This ensures I get the full output of the inverter (3000watt) available to the RV, The only safety concern is ensure the breaker for the converter circuit is off before I switch on the inverter. We have used this successfully for 4 years with no problems.
  6. As far as I can tell the only networks with reasonable coverage outside of major centers are verizon and AT&T. Verizon has slightly better coverage but with a cell booster we have always been able to get AT&T service. If you only camp in campgrounds in major cities I guess Sprint might be OK but we had Tmobile for a while and it worked only 10% of the time when boondocking
  7. I usually change air filter on my chev diesel every year. I buy from Amazon and usually pay about $40. I was advised to do this by a friend who was a trucker and he subscribed to the better safe than sorry philosophy. Since we spend a lot of time boondocking in the desert it seems like a wise precaution
  8. GPS When is it time to replace?

    I also have the Garmin 760RV LMT. I love it, my wife hates it and never use it and prefers paper maps. That might be the source of some of the negative reviews youve seen. I love the display of actual speed and speed limit and use that more than my speedometer. I have it set up to tell me time and distance to destination which I also find very useful. Mine is 4 year old and i wouldnt change it for the world.
  9. Solar 12V or 24V system

    We also use 24v panels and have no problem. The only drawback is needing an MPPT controller rather than a PWM type. MPPT controller are quite a bit more expensive. OTOH you get much more of the power that hits your panel to go into your battery. We use 200watt panels that are only slightly bigger than the 160 watt 12 volt panel we started out with on our garage. They are Hanwha and are much more solidly built and stronger than the 12v panel. Not sure if that is a generalization or just those particular panels. I think they would go on the roof just fine but we have them free standing so we can catch the "summer" sun in Canada. Really need to maximize your solar inout since we have many more cloudy/partially cloudy days than our winters in arizona.
  10. LED bulb choices

    You can get flat "pancake" type bulbs that plug in directly and they are available with a lumen output equivalent to flat panels. The panels come with double sided tape to hold them to the top of the fixture and it can become unstuck. Not a problem for light, just looks odd. You can find suppliers on ebay that specify lumen output - you want over 200 to match typical bulbs and you want a color temp about 4000k to match warm white incandescent bulb light.
  11. RV Servicing

    I have my Chev 3500 diesel oil changed at Walmart in Yuma and its about $50. No problems so far and its the second year I've used them.
  12. Tools and Such!

    One I've used a lot but didn't really expect to is my Dremel. Used it to cut metal parts, repair dentures and sharpen my chain saw among other things
  13. Another refrigerator question

    Our fridge has worked fine in temps as low as -7celsius. I understand what Kirk was saying but we have never had a problem in spite of numerous times our overnight got below 32 F. Not sure what is different about our setup (Cougar 32ft 5er)
  14. Honda 2000 companion generators

    Might also look at a champion 75531i 3100 Watt generator. Will run my air conditioner and it is as quiet as the equivalent Honda. Had one for 2 yrs and it still starts first pull
  15. Anyone full timing on 25000 a year?

    Our total income last year was under $20K and we lived happily. Many "Could this get any better?" moments, many many more than when I worked fulltime and spent most nights watching TV. Money does bring security, Its nice to know that a truck problem can be fixed right now and you wont have to eat Ramen noodles for 6 months to pay for it. Problem is that many of us make/have made huge sacrifices in our happiness to get a small amount of security. Security that can disappear in a moment in the current economic climate. I'm working on having a lifestyle that doesnt use much in the way of resources and so doesnt need as much security so I dont have to work so hard to get it. Solar is a must along with boondocking all the time. Plus you get to meet such nice people!!