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Old 06-27-2016, 05:40 PM   #1
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Onboard Generator Install Question

I have a 2015 345BHTS that I order and received last year. I have a portable generator set I carry when going off grid but would like to add an on board permanent one instead. Can this even be done seeing my camper does not have the prep done for the generator? Is this even worth exploring? Can you even get the eagle series prepped at the factory? I don't see an option for it but I didn't know if they would do it upon request.
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Old 06-28-2016, 12:34 AM   #2
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I recently bought a 2013 361 REQS Eagle Premier used. It did not have the generator prep from the factory, but I negotiated the prep and install of an on board generator into the purchase price.

The prep and install included piping the exhaust, plumbing it into the propane system, hooking it into the electrical grid and installing an on/off switch into my interior control panel (where my slide switches are).

I was negotiating with two different RV dealerships, and both trailers (used) would need the generator prep and install performed. One dealership quoted me $3000 for the prep package, but without the install or purchase of the generator. The other one (the place I ended up purchasing from) quoted me $5k for the works; prep, install and the generator.

I would imagine that, as long as you have a storage spot to put the generator in and have some sort of on-board fuel source; they can do the generator preparation install aftermarket.
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Old 07-21-2016, 08:38 PM   #3
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I'm in the process of purchasing an Eagle myself. The compartment is there but no factory option for a genny or even to prep for one. Which I don't understand. Originally I was going to get a North Point before discovering the rules about FW weight and length when it comes to being licensed properly in Ca. The NP line has it as an option.

With that said I am working with the dealer to explore genny options.
My two options are:
A. Portable Gen and finding a place to store and secure it since it wont fit in the front compartment. I'm looking at a 5.5 or 6.5k so I can run both ACs.
B. Getting the front compartment prepped and installed for just under 6500 with an Onan LP. I'm somewhat familiar with the pros/cons of an LP Gen so I'm asking for a gas Gen. Unless someone can convince me to stay with an LP.

It's hard to say if it is worth it. I'm assuming when the OP indicates a perm Gen installed I'm assuming the typical Onan L or Gas Gens.
So here's how I look at it.
Option A - Cheaper route. ~3800 for a comparable Yamaha/Honda Gen. But now I have to find a place to store and transport it. It's an awkward size for my FW's compartments so it has to be stored in the bed of the truck or near the FW. Although our fellow campers are usually pretty honest. The problem is how do you secure it from the dishonest camper? Locks, chains etc dont prevent them walking away. Check the interwebs for proof.
Option B - Significantly more expensive (another 2500) in my case especially over the 5K RE was charged. But its stored and setup like a standard Gen for NP and "higher" Jayco lines. So you get the auto switch and remote start. Not saying someone cant steal it from the compartment but I would say that is less likely considering the difficulty over one just sitting around.

So like RE says above it can be done. Is it worth the $? I'm still not sure for my situation.

To add to my dilemma is my desire to add solar at some point. So do I save that money and put it towards a solar setup? I mostly glamp but do want the option of boondocking when I want to get away from the parking lots of the campgrounds. And I know that solar, to be a complete replacement for a Gen, would require more panels and batteries than I have space for.
- so my thought is by a Gen to power 1 AC. Put the rest of the $ towards the beginning of a solar setup that I can expand little by little.

My first post!. Holy moly can i drone on.
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Old 07-22-2016, 04:25 AM   #4
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Nothing better than having the gen built in. Press a button and you have power and no heavy gen for my old back to have to lift. Pay the money and have it built in and you already said you prefer gas vs LP. So do I.
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Old 07-22-2016, 10:38 AM   #5
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Prone,

I agree about the potential for theft, it was one of the reasons a non-built in generator was a non-starter for me. The other thing, which you dont mention, is simply the convenience of the hard installed genset.

You are boondocking and need power? Just hop in and push the switch, wait a couple seconds and you have full power to the trailer. No lugging a generator out and finding a good place to put it, chaining it to your trailer, filling it with gas, starting it up, hooking it to your trailer, etc.

If I had to do all that to get power when boondocking, I'd never go boondocking. I like to relax when I'm out on the road, not do extra work. Not saying that its a half day exercise or anything, but it would frustrate me.

From your point of view, being in the West, I'd have to ask where you plan to travel. In the next few years, do you think you'll be going somewhere that requires both boondocking AND is hot enough to need AC?

If not, maybe you can do the solar first, and use that to run fans and stuff to keep cool in the hotter areas. Then save up for a future generator install.

Edit: One other thing. If you haven't purchased the trailer yet, make them sweat a little bit. Tell them that you dont think that you can swing it if they can't do the generator install for $XXX (however much you think you would be happy to pay).

Like I said before, I was playing two different RV dealerships against one another; and one finally came out and said that they would do it for $5K. Said that they had a generator they had added for someone else but then they didn't want it they could give me for cheap. (Yes I verified with them that it was brand new in the box, exactly what I was looking for, etc).

You never know what they'll do for a sale.
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Old 07-22-2016, 11:10 PM   #6
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What brand gen are you looking to install? Prep pkg is not that complicated and can be installed by you much cheaper.
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Old 07-23-2016, 08:03 AM   #7
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Prone.. I would consider solar and 2 Honda 2000i's in parallel.
At least each 2000i is manageable and storable in the front compartment.

I don't want to take this thread off the rails, but what's with the licensing in CA?
The Eagles and NorthPoints are pretty close in specs.
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Old 07-23-2016, 08:18 AM   #8
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I do not know about California rules, I am in the southeast. Need to make sure the Honda Gens can handle running in an enclosed compartment.

Not much is needed to make this work. Battery cable, wiring harness for electric start, vents for door and buy tailpipe kit from honda for the 2 units. You are probaly not talking $200-300 for parts. I would run remote up tobthe bedroom. Maybe place it in closet were if you remove it you dont leave amy holes.
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Old 07-26-2016, 09:34 PM   #9
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To address the OP - I would say depends on how much you can get the prep and gen for. As Red says, its not a difficult/pricey job to do yourself. So if you're handy maybe take a stab at it and tell us how it goes. I might one of these days. I didnt think to google it until Red mentioned it.

For me after I ruled out the built-in I was hoping to get a smaller 3.5 Honda/Yam. Or like klassic says 2 2ks parallel. I was leaning towards the Ys because the 3.5 IIRC has a remote or remote start. And I'm too late in the process to have any leverage with the deal on a built-in.

Sorry to throw off the OP topic but I meant to highlight that all the luxury I wanted in an NP was not available in an Eagle. Especially gen prep. I obviously dont know the RV manufacturing game but why not help people spend more money with all the options they want?

@ klassic - In Ca in order to tow a FW over 15k GCWR you have to have a non-commercial Class A DL. At this point I'm not ready to do that. This is my first FW. And the fact that some states don't allow over 60 ft combined towing length nudged us to the eagles. We could get a similar floorplan in a shorter length inthe Eagle.
- Now that I know the rules I would say many, to most, people are towing beyond their TV capacity AND/OR driving with the wrong license in Ca. Obviously I cant tell what license they have as they whiz by me in the fast lane. But I can tell by the conversations I have with people who tow that they don't know the laws in Ca about FW weight.
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