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Thread: Built In or Portable Generator in Nash

  1. #1

    Built In or Portable Generator in Nash

    Thanks to all the great input from folks on this site, we have decided to purchase a Nash 23D. The last option we are trying to decide on is the generator. What are the advantages and disadvantages to getting the generator built into the Nash at the factory (besides the $2900 cost)? We had a class C before with the generator built in so we don't have any experience with the portable generators. We plan on doing a lot of boondocking and forest service campground where we won't have hook ups.

  2. #2
    Site Supporter pamvanw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    We've never had a built in one, but they sure seem convenient. With our heavy portable Yamaha 2400 we have to go outside, hook it up, and pull the starter. (& its not my job so that may be out of order) It has to be full of gasoline, which hopefully didnt spill all over the place in the filling process. And we have to be concerned about it being stolen. For example, if we take the truck to a rail trail the cover is off of the truck bed so the bikes can fit in, so we can't hide it under the cover. And we sure don't want to leave it unattended at the campsite. So...we locked it to the truck with a bicycle lock, threw a blanket over it, said a prayer and hit the trail. I'm not sure what the downside is to a built in one, besides the cost, and loss of storage.
    Pam & Steve
    2012 Arctic Fox 30U, Riviera Dune with a dream dinette
    2012 GMC Sierra 3500 D/A

  3. #3
    Explorer tdeperte's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Wittmann, AZ
    The biggest obstacle is cost. You can buy a portable 3500 watt generator for under $500 bucks. But they are on the heavy side, 100 lbs or so.
    The built in ones run on propane usually, the portables on gasoline. Might be a factor, might not. I like the fact that I can literally throw away a couple of portable generators and still be ahead in the finance department.

    2012 Ford F250 Lariat
    6.2L, 4.30, 2WD, SC SB
    Curt 16K
    Firestone Ride Rite Air Bags
    Wireless One Compressor

    2013 Artic Fox 29-5T Silver Fox

  4. #4
    Site Supporter triplel0455's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
    I like the fact that i don't have to pack gas cans for my built in Onan. Sure is nice when the weather goes to pot and all you have to do is push the button on the wall and the genny is running. You do lose the compartment for storage. I had some bags made that will hold a couple of my camp chairs and just put them on top of the genny when traveling. I have been to a couple different events where if you did not have a vertical exhaust that would reach above the roof line you were not allowed to run your genny. Lots of views, just have to decide which will work best for you. Good luck, Lance
    2014 Dodge Laramie 3500 Crew cab SRW 4x4, 6.7 CTD, Eng. Brake, 68RE, 3.42, B&W turn over ball with
    companion hitch, Herd Bumper, Tork-Lift Stable Load Quick Disconnects, 91 Gal RDS aux. fuel tank.
    KD Links X1 HD Dash Cam
    2007- 295E A/F, Steadyfast stabilizers, Onan, Equa-Flex suspension, Trail-Air Pin Box
    TST 510RV TPMS, LT235-85R-16E HT3 Cooper Tires

  5. #5
    Deputy foxyrvlady's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Sublimity, OR, , USA
    In the smaller trailers, like the 23D--basically the same layout as our Fox 25R--you loose valuable outside storage space if you have a generator. Also you are right on top of it when it is running. We used a Honda 2000i for years until it quit running, and got a Yamaha 2400 so we could run the AC. We have a canopy on our truck and carry the Yamaha there--the smaller Honda rode inside the trailer door. If leaving camp the Yamaha would be put inside the trailer. You need a quality, inverter generator in order to protect the electrical components in the trailer. Honda and Yamaha have been the standard, but there seems to be less expensive alternatives out there now--which I can't give an opinion on!

    I realize the newer trailers have different storage at the front of the trailer. Most of our storage is under the front bed--camp chairs, table, Buddy Heater, tire covers. laundry basket, extra bedding, outside rug in it's carrier, and a bunch more stuff. It is filled to the brim. The generator area has our larger tool box, small Weber grill, tire jack, a folding metal step plus odds and ends. Our leveling blocks, chocks, extension cord,and water hoses go in the storage on the street side under the dinette seats in the slide. Mentioning this brings we to one point on the 23D--they did not put door or drawer access to the huge storage area under the dinette seats. You have to take off the seat cushions and access it from the top. The 25R has a drawer under the seat ends--see if you can get them installed at the factory--or buy them and do it yourself. It is a fairly major chore to remove the cushions on the 23D--I literally tore that trailer apart at the rally last year! Look it over carefully to see where you are going to put what!

    Another option I've seen mentioned is to get a smaller AC--Dometic makes the Penguin. It is supposed to run on a 2000 generator. Don't know if the factory would do this. Some people have done it themselves since it can be cheaper than a larger genny. You would need to do your research. I can start both the generators--the bigger Yamaha is easier than the Honda. I have arthritis and a bad back but can still start it (as of last summer at least!). Good luck--I really do like the 23D--it just needs a few tweaks!
    Linda & Dave (retired US Army) and Magic, the Yellow Lab Duck Dog
    2002 Arctic Fox 25R, Yamaha 2400i, Les Schwab 105 6-volt batteries, Maxxis Tires
    2003 DODGE 3500 SLT Quad Cab, 4x4, SRW, HO CTD, 3.73, 48RE, Jake Brake, 214K Miles and counting

  6. #6
    Site Supporter
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Full.Time USA from SD
    I didn't see anyone mention sound levels: direct generator to air Noise. (Someone did mention vibrational noise conducted by the trailer frame/walls/etc.)

    So a caution on purchasing anything that is cheap -- the quieter generators are more expensive because of the difference in construction + sound-deadening materials.

    Using a noisy (and perhaps smelly) generator is a way to make for unhappy neighbors.
    -- David

    Purpose: www.davidmc.org
    Home: 2007 Arctic Fox 27E which dutifully follows a 2007 Dodge RAM 2500 to new neighborhoods.

  7. #7
    Senior Member b7xv's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Veradale, Washington, USA
    I agree with Linda on the loss of outside storage places for you camping required apparatus & parts (crap). We have the 22h and if it had the built in generator I would not have anywhere to store tools, rugs, and some of my barbeque stuff. I can't imagine that the generator that would fit into that small area on the 23d would be bigger than the honda 2000i. I know there are security issues with the portable ones, but I would much rather have the storage than that spot taken up by a generator. The 2013 23d we saw at Spokane's RV show last week does have drawers under the dinette for some storage. I would have the Yamaha 2400 if we did a lot of dry camping since it will run the AC unlike the Honda 2000i for about the same $.
    Gary & Connie Burchill; Maggie and Michico the traveling Shih Tzu's
    2012 toyota tundra dbl. cab, tow package,5.7 6spd.
    2014 Nash 23D, Honda 200i
    Avatar:Sun set on Loon Lake, Wa.

  8. #8
    Site Supporter 2&Chuck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    I just wrestled with this same decission and ended up buying a Yamaha 2400 instead of having the Onan installed in my 2007 22GQ Arctic Fox. Price for installation of the Onan was quoted at between $3500 and $4500. This was more than I wanted to spend on my six year old trailer. I was also concerned about loosing storage space and about noise with the generator being in the trailer. It is my impression that the Onan runs at full speed all the time, regardless of load, whereas the Yamaha and Honda speed adjusts rpm to meet the load. They are also slightly quieter. Since the Onan runs on propane, it will produce a little less power than a gasoline unit. Not having to move a 75 pound generator around would have been nice but not worth the other disadvantages, IMHO.
    So far this year, in addition to the generator, I have added a second 100 Watt solar panel, a new mattress, a new water pump, a bathroom vent cover and new tires. Hopefully, that will hold us for the year.
    Myrna, Greg & Charlie
    State= CO
    2011 Ford F250 Lariat, 6.7L V8 Diesel, 6 spd Trans, 4X4, tow pkg/off road pkg.
    Crew Cab w/buckets , Hitch= Drawtight, Reese Dual Cam. 2 100W AM Solar panels, 1 Yamaha 2400,
    2 Trojan T105s
    2007 AF 22GQ
    avatar= Capitol Reef 2012

  9. #9
    Site Supporter mardave's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Eugene, Oregon

    Cool Quality inverter generator

    Just my 2 cents worth. You have to be reasonably careful when using a generator with your RV. If you use some of the cheaper models the regulation on the power may not be safe to operate the modern electronics in the RV's, TT's, 5W's and TH's. Items such as fridges, stereos, digital thermostats, converter/chargers, etc. require a specific regulated input and they can fail with poorly regulated power. That being said, there are a lot of units out there besides Honda and Yamaha that will work, but then it becomes a question of reliability. Research is the best answer to suit your needs. As far as space goes, it seems that there is less and less storage space in most units these days. The most storage seems to be in 5W's. It is just a question of what suits your needs.
    Dave & Marie Thomas*
    2002 Nash 29V 2001-2011, 2011 AF27T Silver Fox Edition 2011 to present.
    2001 Ford F-350 Crew Cab Short Box 7.3 diesel 150,000 mi & counting, Stockland Canopy Super Chip programmer DeBoe/DoMore Step
    K&N Filter Max Brake Controller Tailgate E-Z lift, TST TPMS
    2009 Toyota Venza V6 AWD
    2006 Hewescraft 16ft Sportsman w 50 horse Honda

  10. #10
    Senior Member dieselhorse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    South Texas, ............a whole 'nother country
    We have a Yamaha 2400--very easy to start and powers the A/C fine, but must choose one large appliance at a time. In other words, not use the microwave or a hair drier while the A/C is running. We lock the Yama in the truck bed with one of those big bicycle chains and U locks. The "fugeddaboutit" lock and chain are pricy but like a one-time-cost insurance policy. good luck with your purchase.
    dieselhorse: Former owner of a 2001 Nash 24-5N

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