Washington State isn’t known for mostly sunny weather so I needed to figure out a way to power my devices using the sun, a generator or upgrade my inverters.
At first I thought of buying Goal Zero’s Yeti, but with all the things I carry with me that would still limit me to a few days and still relying on the campgrounds power.
The Jackery is lightweight. I can get lots of recharges on my electronic device including my Mac.
My first choice was a lightweight Goal Zero Yeti alternative so I choose the Explorer 240 watt inverter.
- I get more charges for my MacBook Air than the Yeti.
- It was cheaper than the Goal Zero Yeti.
- The battery in the Explorer was lithium and not acid as in the Yeti which means it will last longer.
- It was lighter than the Yeti.
For long camping trips during the winter months I purchased this generator from Harbor Freight. I can connect this to my batteries and charge them using a battery charger and run my appliances.
After 3 months of research I came across a video on YouTube about the Harbor Freight 100 watt solar panel kit.
In this video during overcast skies, the author while unpacking of the solar panels connected a volt meter the the panels controller. The panels were sending a charge to the meter.
The next day I drove to Harbor Freight. In celebration of Father’s day they had a parking lot sale. The solar panels, regular priced at 189.00, was on sale for $148.00.
I also purchased the Harbor Freight 35 amp hour solar batteries at $69.00 each. I grabbed two of them.
I built an aluminum frame around the solar panels and mounted them on top of the van.
I didn’t discuss the bed or the kitchen setup. So I better do that next before I talk about my camping experience and the changes that came from that.