generators - help!

Hey there friends I have a 20" Skamper Kodiak and love it. I do mostly wilderness camping or BLM land/National Forests. I wondered if any of you have any recommendations on a generator that would help keep things a little easier. Tried solar last spring in Colorado...a dismal failure and I'm sure I just don't know enough to make a smart choice. Four inches of snow in the rockies made me realize I do need the heat and also "Plan B". The Pike Nat'l forest hosts had a 5th wheel and used a Honda 2000, and they were happy with that. I don't care about using the micro or AC just yet, but I would like to keep the heat, fridge working. Thanks for any help/suggestions you may have!
Re: generators - help!

The Honda or Kipor 2000 will keep the battery charged and that will keep lights and heat going. Should run the Refer also. You can couple 2 of these together and have 4000 watts. You will be able to do it cheaper with Kipor, and they are just as good. Also, both brands have 3000 units and they will do it all.
RE: generators - help!

Take a look at a Champion 46540RV. It's a great little 3500 watt generator for about half the price of a Honda. I have used one for a couple of years with no problems. It has a buit in 30 amp recepticle and is just a few db louder than a Honda.
Re: generators - help!

I'd like to ask a related question here. Long story, short western KY recently experienced a horrible ice storm. We were out of power 12 days at my house and we were lucky compared to many. During this time, I purchased a Kipor IG 6000 from a local RV dealer. Until reading this thread, I had never heard of Kipor before. This is a very quiet generator and allowed us to run quite a few things in our house. We also have an LQ horse trailer and are shopping for a TT. Can anyone give me an evaluation of this generator. Is the Kipor brand well thought of? I paid more than the bargain brands were going for, but none of them were available in my time of need. Thanks.
Re: generators - help!

I sell the Kipor brand. They have been good generators. Only one has given us problems and Kipor replaced it under their warranty. I think it was a carb. problem. They barely louder than a Honda and cost less.

Sorry, but I disagree with 91harley, Champion is a LOT louder than a Honda. One of our camping friends has one and I hear it all night long. Also they are not "Inverter Technology", which gives you clean electricity. You can run your computer off a Honda or Kipor.
Re: generators - help!

Grandview Trailer Sa - "Inverter Technology", which gives you clean electricity. You can run your computer off a Honda or Kipor.
Kenneth, can you take a moment and explain "Inverter Technology?" I did, in fact, run my computer off the Kipor during the outage. I told my wife that I was surprised to be able to do so. Some other friends acted like this was no big deal because the 'puter doesn't require much electricity. Deep down in my mind somewhere I knew there was more to this, but could not remember. Seems you know what this is all about.
Re: generators - help!

Don't know a lot, but the sine wave from a generator with Inverter Technology is even, or constant, giving you "clean" electricity. I hope someone here can explain that better.....feel free.


Senior Member
Re: generators - help!

AC stands for "Alternating Current" and is what we and our appliances are accustomed to in our homes. It alternates between positive and negative voltage (+/- 115V typically) at 60Hz (a Hertz is 1 cycle per second). The power you get from your power company (once it's passed through the transformed) comes as a perfect sine wave - at 0s the voltage is 0, at 1/4 of a cycle the voltage is +115 V, at 1/2 cycle it is 0, at 3/4 cycle it is -115 V, and at 1 cycle it is back to zero. This happens 60 times a second. All of this follows a perfectly smooth sinusoidal wave function. "Sine wave inverter generators" produce this smooth wave form which sensitive electronics prefer and some devices require. The battery in a laptop mitigates the problems somewhat, but some things just won't run if the electricity comes in "square" waves instead of sine waves. You will likely have problems with a desktop computer especially if it has an older monitor. Hope this helps!

DC stands for "Direct Current" and is flat-lined at 12 V. An inverter "flips" or inverts the power for half of a cycle. There is no cycle for DC electricity.
Re: generators - help!

I kind of doubt that any modern computer would have a problem with a generator unless the generator has a brush noise defect of some kind. If you operate your computer through an uninterruptable power supply (UPS) you are especially protected. The UPS also provides battery backup so you can shut the computer down gently when the generator quits, but it also has a lot of filtering in it. I don't have a computer without a UPS.

All computers today are themselves powered by "inverter technology" internally or in the power cord. What that means is that there is a 'switching power supply' in the power system. It might be a box inside a desktop computer, or a box in the line cord of a laptop, but somewhere there is this box. The power supply box has 'switching' electronics in it, for which the main function is to convert the incoming AC into the various AC and DC voltages required by the computer internally.

The 'switching power supply' also allows any common voltage or frequency input. In other words it doesn't care whether you plug it into 110-120 AC @ 60 Hz. or 210-230 AC @ 50 Hz. if you use the right cord. The same power supply does it all.

For computer manufacturers it means that they don't have to have a different power supply for different countries around the globe just a different cord. It also means they don't have to build those dang things from scratch. A 'switching power supply' is practically a commodity now. In other words, they're a dime a dozen.

The same sort of electronics that has become common in electronic power supplies has now been built into 'inverter technology' generators. These generators (simple description coming) still use the ubiquitous internal combustion engine to spin a rotor of wires inside a magnetic field to produce AC power. Except now that is only the first step in the process and not the last step as it is in a conventional generator.

This spinning rotor AC generator component actually creates a higher voltage and higher frequency than a normal generator. This is then transformed and converted to a high voltage DC (direct current from rectifiers) which can be filtered and regulated to a very clean and stable voltage. THIS IS THE KEY TO THIS FORM OF GENERATOR! The voltage and frequency output is no longer dependent on the RPM of the combustion engine.

This highly filtered and regulated DC can then be turned into a very stable (both voltage and frequency) AC (by an internal 'inverter') which is presented at the receptacles that you plug into. Since the output AC is created by internal electronics the manufacturer can control how well the output matches the traditional sinusoidal AC provided by the power company that powers your stick home. Most modern designs do this very well.

So, with an 'inverter technology' generator there's a lot of stuff going on with very different kinds of equipment. First, the engine turns from some kind of fuel. Second, the engine turns the rotor in a magnetic field produced by the battery to create AC. Third, the high frequency high voltage AC created by the rotor is transformed and rectified (converted) to stable DC. Lastly, with electronics, the DC is then 'switched', filtered and regulated (inverted) into the AC that we can use to power our stuff.

Note that the generator manufacturer can produce, with one package, a generator with various voltage and frequency combinations for the output to suit the local market on a global basis. Everyone wins!
Re: generators - help!

We had a choice between the Honda and Kipor and only chose the Honda because it seemed we got a bit more hours per fill on the unit. Both are exceptional units as Ken has said!


Senior Member
RE: generators - help!

Hay Tex :) :)
That some really good information. ;) ;) :laugh:
But we need to figure out how :question: to connect the "whatcha ma call it" :8ball: to the "thingambob" :approve: then we will never need a fuel again :laugh: :laugh: or till the overflow meter stop working :eek: :eek: :eek: . Then we all up the creek again. :dead: :dead: :dead:
:cool: :laugh: :angry: :8ball: :dead: :blackeye:
Too much free time :clown: :clown: