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Old 04-21-2021, 10:39 PM   #1
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Pros and cons of acquiring a portable power station

I hope to buy and start converting a school bus later this summer. For electrical, my current plan is to start with two 12 volt lithium batteries, a charger/inverter and a 3kw true sine wave gas generator. I also hope to charge the batteries with the alternator while driving. Solar may come later.

In addition to 12 volt lights and fans, Iíll be powering some 110 volt devices like a 10 cubic foot fridge, a TV and a CPAP machine. Hereís my question: is there any utility in also acquiring a power station like the Jackery Solar Generator 1500? (I know itís not a generator.) I was thinking the portability might be handy, and I could move some loads like the fridge to it overnight to keep the main batteries from getting too discharged. But theyíre expensive. Iíd appreciate your thoughts.
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Old 04-21-2021, 11:03 PM   #2
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I think for the same price or less you could add to your existing house batteries.
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Old 04-21-2021, 11:28 PM   #3
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I put together a 600 amp LFP battery bank feeding a 2800 watt inverter. I came to the conclusion that a store bought battery bank would be a better way to go. When you add up the copper cables, bus bars, and lugs it gets expensive. Let alone trying to pass electrical code, especially at over 24 volt rating.
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Old 04-21-2021, 11:58 PM   #4
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No the self built option will not only be cheaper but suit your own specific needs better.

To get started use the Duracell / Deka 6V GCs at $1/Ah @12V, cheap as chips treated well will last 7+ years.

If you screw up and murder them, not such a big deal.

Just design the system and select your other infrastructure gear to also be compatible with LFP cells, so if you want to upgrade

7+ times the price but lots of advantages

then that is the only change needed.
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Old 04-22-2021, 11:28 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john61ct View Post
No the self built option will not only be cheaper but suit your own specific needs better.

To get started use the Duracell / Deka 6V GCs at $1/Ah @12V, cheap as chips treated well will last 7+ years.

If you screw up and murder them, not such a big deal.

Just design the system and select your other infrastructure gear to also be compatible with LFP cells, so if you want to upgrade

7+ times the price but lots of advantages

then that is the only change needed.
Hello John, I know battery solar systems and battery bank depend on the usage, it would help with your experience to put together a basic start up kit to give guys like me to an idea how to start a system.

Thank you for all you ideas and information on this issue.

J
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Old 04-22-2021, 02:05 PM   #6
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relevant https://www.skoolie.net/forums/f49/using-same-battery-for-engine-and-house-35740-post435559.html
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Old 04-22-2021, 07:35 PM   #7
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you should not charge lithium batteries off your alternator you must be real careful to learn about them as thermal runaway is dangerous
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Old 04-22-2021, 10:05 PM   #8
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what a DCDC is for

Also specialized alt VRs like Wakespeed.

Also a good BMS as backup.
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Old 04-22-2021, 10:42 PM   #9
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The only advantage I can see is if you have a 2nd vehicle and you want to have a portable setup to xfer over when using that one to take a short trip, etc.
Otherwise, much better to spend money elsewhere.
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Old 04-23-2021, 12:41 PM   #10
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Even a 12V bank at 1600Ah can be made in modular sub-packs with handles, for transfer from vehicle to boat to trailer to off grid shack.

Depends on strength of course, some people can handle 60lb units, others need 30lb ones.

There is no getting around physics, Ah capacity is linearly correlated to mass

the more "portable" the pack the lower its capacity.
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Old 04-28-2021, 03:44 PM   #11
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Do it all he time. Go through a B2B. I draw 30A out of 135. +20 to run the ship.
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