Saturday, December 10, 2022


RVelectricity – Just Ask Mike (J.A.M.): Solar generator updates – Bring your band!


Welcome to my J.A.M. (Just Ask Mike) Session, a weekly column where I answer your basic electrical questions. If you’re a newbie who’s never plugged in a shore power cord (or ask – what’s a shore power cord?), or wonder why your daughter’s hair dryer keeps tripping the circuit breaker, this column is for you. Send your questions to Mike Sokol at mike (at) with the subject line – JAM. Today I cover solar generator updates.


Dear Mike,

I really liked your article a few months ago about musicians playing far away from AC outlets using solar generators. You provided links to your first three articles, but I wonder if you’ve added anything new. I have a small ’70s band and do a lot of camping, so the idea of being able to jam with my musician friends while boondocking is really interesting. So, any updates? —Stan

Dear Stan,
Indeed I do have solar generator updates. Since I first published this article, I’m now up to Part 7 of Unplugging From AC. In addition to using Solar Power Stations to power bands, I’ve now used a Jackery 1500 for a video production crew to power interview lights and charge camera batteries out in the field.

I’ve also tried out a Jackery 2000 Explorer Pro to power a rotary impact hammer all day to demo a sidewalk and steps at my son’s house in preparation for new concrete in a few weeks. The possibilities are endless with these modern Lithium Battery/Inverter Power Stations.

What about bands?

I’m now up to seven articles in my Unplugging From AC series, with no end in sight. As I’ve already published, I’m now covering all sorts of sound systems and stage lighting powered from lithium battery inverter alone, plus some outdoor tests include solar panels.

This is essentially boondocking for bands, so what I learn here is applicable to camping off-grid. And yes, there are quite a few musicians who also camp who want to bring along their keyboard or guitar or even accordion (yikes!).

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Here are links to my first six articles in Unplugging From AC Outlets:

I may be presenting at Quartzsite 2023 (fingers crossed)

Tony Barthel has invited me to speak at Quartzsite in January, and he’ll be doing sound and video support for the main seminar stage.

The plan is for Tony to power all stage sound and video gear with a Jackery 1500 Explorer with 400 watts of solar panels. I know this will work, so if I can make it out there (fingers crossed), Tony and I will also be doing some live webcast streaming from Quartzsite on every topic imaginable.

OK, everyone. Remember that electricity is a useful and powerful force, so we all need to pay attention to safety precautions while using it.

Let’s play safe out there….

Send your questions to me at my RVelectricity forum here.

Mike Sokol is an electrical and professional sound expert with 50+ years in the industry. His excellent book RV Electrical Safety is available at For more info on Mike’s qualifications as an electrical expert, click here.

You don’t want to miss Mike’s webcasts on his YouTube channel.

For information on how to support RVelectricity and No~Shock~Zone articles, seminars and videos, please click the I Like Mike Campaign


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1 month ago

I’ve just signed up for the Zendure SuperBase V4600 plus one satellite battery pack and expect it’s delivery later next month.

The unit has all the outlets and energy I’ll need to power my RV or my PHEV and will be recharged from solar panels.

If interested, I’ll be happy to share my experience.

John Irvine
1 month ago

I hope I’m not boondocking near the band,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

1 month ago
Reply to  John Irvine

That’s exactly what I was thinking. I’m the same age group and that’s the last thing I would want to hear out in the woods.

1 month ago
Reply to  John Irvine

No kidding. And no accordions ever!

Mike Sokol
1 month ago
Reply to  Les

Hey, I play accordion! I know dozens of polkas… 😁

1 month ago
Reply to  John Irvine

My thoughts exactly…keep the garage band in the garage please