by Mike Sokol
Most of you should know by now that portable inverter generators aren’t really generators at all, in the traditional sense. Nope, they’re actually 3-phase alternators very similar to what you have in your car. And they don’t make 120-volts AC directly. Nope, they produce 12-volts DC internally, which is then connected to a 12-volt-to-120-volt inverter similar to what you might have inside of your RV already. This allows the gasoline motor powering the alternator to run at whatever RPMs it likes for best fuel economy. And this is exactly how all Honda, Yamaha, Predator and Cummins-Onan inverter generators work. There’s a fuel tank, a gasoline (and propane) engine, an alternator, and a DC-to-AC inverter making pure sine waves at 60 Hz.
Now let’s assume that instead of building a big quiet box with acoustic isolation, a fuel tank, and gasoline engine with muffler, and an alternator, that we just hung the inverter part of an inverter generator directly onto the battery and alternator of your tow vehicle instead. That means you can idle your vehicle engine, plug a box into your vehicle battery with a special high-amperage connection and wiring, and then be able to make 1,000 watts (or more) of 120-volt AC power at 60 Hz, exactly like a Honda inverter generator.
Enter the CarGenerator™. The beauty of this technology is that you don’t need to bring an extra can of fuel for a portable generator since you probably have 20 gallons or more already in your tow vehicle, there’s no engine maintenance on the generator to perform, and you can stash the CarGenerator™ box in your living quarters without the smell of gasoline. Oh, and it is as quiet as your vehicle engine idling around 700 to 900 RPM.
The all-weather model that you can hang on the front of your vehicle (when you’re not driving, of course) is around $700, which seems reasonable if it works as advertised. And there are also 1,500-watt and 2,000-watt versions available. So when it arrives in a week or so I’m going to hang it on my Nissan pickup truck, connect it to my 10,000-watt load bank, and monitor it for harmonic content, overheating, etc. If it passes my acid test, then you can buy it in confidence that it will power your next boondocking adventure without any problems. See you here next month for a full review of the CarGenerator™.
For more info, please visit https://cargenerator.com/ and tell them Mike Sokol sent you.
Mike Sokol is an electrical and professional sound expert with 50+ years in the industry. His excellent book RV Electrical Safety is available at Amazon.com. For more info on Mike’s qualifications as an electrical expert, click here.
Email me at mike (at) noshockzone.org with your questions.
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