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(Almost) The First Half of 2020

May 1st, 2020 by Chris Taulborg


Wow, what a crazy (almost) first half of 2020!

Boys' Ski Trip to Breckenridge, CO
January 2020

In January, we took our yearly "boys" trip, and included myoldest son (and had a fantastic time, despite a couple of the guys getting sick!).

View from highest open hikable terrain at Breckenridge
Hike to the top at Breckenridge
View from highest open hikable terrain at Breckenridge

 

New RV Solar Stuff and New Baby!
February / March 2020

It felt like a lot more boxes than this pictures shows.

In February, I ordered a complete solar, inverter, and battery electrical system setup which was delivered freight and dropped off in my garage.

My Covid-19 Mask. Everyone seems to love it.

In March, William, our newest arrival came almost a month late -- and right at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. A few days before he was born, our state implemented a "Stay at Home" order and we were forced to wait even longer on picking up our new RV and installing the new power system.


 

Passing time and Getting Our New RV!
April 2020

During our "Stay at Home" order we passed the time the best we could, trying to keep busy with home projects. Although we still fully planned on selling our home (and to that end, continued pairing down our things and packing), we decided it would be a fun project to build a garden.

It's nice to have a fella who is handy with a drill.
Tada! An (empty) garden!
Our New 2020 Grand Design 3740BH-R 5th Wheel!

 

Battery, Solar, Inverter and Power System Installation
April 2020

    After about a month of "hunkering down", we decided to go ahead pick up the new rig. We got it from the dealer, did our walkthrough, and then my son and I made the drive up to my dad's to install the new electrical components (solar, batteries and inverter system).

    It was crazy, halfway into our drive, we ran into a mid-April blizzard. Luckily the F350 tows like a dream and we didn't have any issues. The snow, as quickly as it came, melted by the middle of the next day so our installation plans were thankfully unaffected.

    Here are the major components (excluding cabling, breakers, and miscellaneous parts):

      Solar System Components:

      • 4 - 365 Watt REC Alpha Series Solar Panels (1,460‬ total watts)
      • 1 - Victron SmartSolar MPPT 150/70-Tr Solar Charge Controller

      Battery System Components:

      • 6 - 24V 50ah Battleborn Lithium Batteries (when converted to 12V makes 100ah each)
      • 2 - Lynx Power In Modular DC Bus Bar
      • 1 - Lynx Shunt VE. Can (1000A shunt / battery monitor / fuse)

      Inverter / Power System Components:

      • 2 - 3000 Watt 24V Victron Multiplus Inverters
      • 1 - Victron Autotransformer 120/240V AC-100A for step up, step down and split phase balancing
      • 1 - Orion 24V to 12V DC to DC Converter
      • 1 - Victron Color GX Display Unit
      What weird April weather... Snowstorm the day we started working on Solar In
      Opening boxes and taking inventory of our stuff
      Laying things out and organizing the 6 Battleborn Batteries
      Cutting the backer board for the electric components
      Dry-fitting the wall install and components
      Getting everything wired up

      I was lucky enough to enlist the help of not only my dad, but also my electrician friend Corey. And later on, I had my brother to help with the installation of the solar panels! I'm truly the luckiest guy in the world to have guys like these in my life. This was a super stressful installation for me due to a few technical issues with the inverter - but thankfully a phone call with customer support on Monday made for a very quick fix and all's well that end's well.

      Corey and my son making cable and crimping on lugs
      My brother Terry applying a thick coat of Dicor over the mounting brackets after we finished installing the solar panels
      Almost there! Ready to run the solar wiring and tie down the battery straps.
      Posted in the categories Renovation, Travel, RV Upgrades/Updates.

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