Here I sit, a week early to the 2022 FROG Rally in Elkhart, Indiana, and I can’t wait to see what all gadgets are on display here. But that’s next month’s gadget newsletter. This month I’m back to focusing on solar and battery systems, including the cutting-edge system I’ve had the privilege of testing for the past few months.
If you’re planning to attend the FROG rally next week or the FMCA Convention in Lincoln, Nebraska, I hope to have the privilege of meeting you.
EDITED BY Tony Barthel
More power to you!
I have been testing what is, to some, the ultimate gadget. Since late May I have had one heck of a solar and lithium system in my own prototype RV. This system has given me some real insight into how these systems perform in the real world and how far I can push things.
But mine isn’t the only one with a system of this caliber, as I detail in an article about some other systems of this caliber along with my own personal experience.
If you’re thinking of migrating to a high-performance lithium/battery system, I hope I can provide some insight into how these systems perform in the real world.
What if you don’t have the power for the power?
I was absolutely going to want to run the A/C for a few hours a day, so I was thinking of all the plan “B” scenarios. I spoke with our own Mike Sokol, who suggested the CarGenerator™.
This nifty gadget allows you to use your vehicle as a generator. It may be all the power you need and yet isn’t another engine you have to maintain.
Taming the GE fridge
I’ve talked to more than a few of you since I wrote this article about using a battery-powered fan to make the 12-volt fridge experience better. Apparently, people have wildly different experiences with 12-volt RV refrigerators depending on the brand.
I have found that this little battery-powered fan was a big help in my previous propane-electric fridge and also helps my newer 12-volt model perform better.
How much water do you have?
If you’ve ever wondered how much capacity your fresh water tank actually has, or would rather fill it to a certain percentage rather than wait until it overflows, this simple portable water meter may be the gadget for you.
A tasty gadget: Barbecue grill mat
Somewhere I have a number of these barbecue grilling mats and I love them. I had actually forgotten how much until I read Gail Marsh’s article about them. While how they work doesn’t compute in my mind, they certainly are a great accessory for a barbecue.
We got two folding Lectric eBikes and they’ve been in crates in the back of the truck. It’s nice that they fold, but they’re not so convenient there. I looked for a great bike rack for the back of our trailer and found one—the CURT aluminum tray bike rack. I love this thing.
Perhaps you’re looking for the same solution I was. If so, I can’t recommend this thing enough.
…and if you don’t already have an eBike
I have had a couple of brands of eBikes and presently have two Lectric eBikes—one for myself and one for my better half. If you don’t already have your own electric bike, Nanci Dixon has one to share with you (well, not actually share share, although I’m sure she would), and she also has an update after 100 miles of use.
Are you RV fire safe?
I had a chance to put my hands on an Element Fire Extinguisher, which is a very small and very different fire suppression tool from what you may be used to. In this article, I explain why it’s different and why I think you should consider getting one.
This doesn’t bug me… anymore
I got a chance to try out the Bugs Off pads that are designed to remove bugs from the front of your RV, or any vehicle for that matter. The design is meant to make the job easier but does it? Well, that’s what my review is all about!
Hey – What are you getting on Amazon?
Did you ever wonder what other RVtravel.com readers are buying? What kinds of cool gadgets are coming from Amazon to other RVers and making their lives easier? We looked at the ten favorite things you’re buying through Amazon recently and came up with the answer.
This month’s RV video
In the article above I share about some of the installed power systems in RVs and that generated a lot of emails to me asking how one could put such a system into an existing RV. As such, I talked to the company who is building them into RVs and they are, indeed, offering these systems in the aftermarket. Here’s my podcast episode (in video form) as this month’s video about these aftermarket systems.
RVers Jason and Abby Epperson have been traveling the country with their three boys for five years. These full-time RVers somehow find the time to home-school the boys, do two podcasts including one about the National Parks and also a weekly news video.
And now they’ve written a book entitled “National Parks Journal for Kids: Log and Remember Your Awesome Outdoor Adventures”. It will be available August 30.
Kids can answer questions, learn trivia, draw pictures, and complete other activities that help them explore and appreciate every park they visit!
It came in the mail
This company sends a lot of information via email and the products are definitely interesting, but we haven’t had a chance to try them. Still, the idea of a stain and mildew remover for awnings and other fabric surfaces intrigues us. If you’ve tried it, let me know.
Other gadget ideas
Gail Marsh has some great ideas for all sorts of gadgets, and this article with 10 creative uses for carabiners is a good example of that.
Editor: Tony Barthel
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