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Old 27-02-2018, 12:49   #1
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Portable Inverter

All, I've done a search through the threads on this, and have not found an answer to my question - just saying I've done some homework.

My Xantrex inverter/charger was fried last year by either lightning or power surge at a marina (which shall remain nameless). I added a Mastervolt charger, with the idea of keeping charger & inverter separated, and I was looking at getting a Mastervolt inverter, but then decided to examine my needs and lifestyle. I have a propane oven / range, so I can cook - no need for a microwave. I don't do smoothies much, so no need for a blender. I make coffee on the stove with a camping french press (and it's damn good....;-). I have good Lithium battery tools, so no real need for corded tools. A portable inverter will charge laptops, iPads, and power tool bats, and they cost $45 for a 375W model from Tripp-Lite. I might like to add a 12V outlet so I have two instead of just one, but what is wrong with my logic here? I can buy two portable inverters for a tenth of the cost of a Mastervolt installed inverter, shrink-wrap one, and have a spare if the first dies. In fact I'd probably buy three, and shrink-wrap one if I added the 12V outlet.

I have two 85W solar panels and an Air-X wind gen. I'm going to be doing Bahamas / Caribbean sailing, not crossing oceans (at least not yet), so why not go with the cheap & simple portable inverter solution? Since I have several other projects to do, it seems this is a way to scratch one of the list easily.

What am I missing?
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Old 27-02-2018, 14:25   #2
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Re: Portable Inverter

Nothing at all. Stop by your local highway Truck Stop and you can find any number of inexpensive 12v inverters that will fill your bill.
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Old 27-02-2018, 19:35   #3
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Re: Portable Inverter

get a pure sine one.

you're not going to run 375 watt on a 12v plug. maybe 150w
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Old 27-02-2018, 23:24   #4
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Re: Portable Inverter

12 volt chargers are available for all of the items you listed that you need an inverter for. And they are likely to more efficient to boot.
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Old 01-03-2018, 17:19   #5
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Re: Portable Inverter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Viking Sailor View Post
12 volt chargers are available for all of the items you listed that you need an inverter for. And they are likely to more efficient to boot.
That is what we do, so no need for an inverter at all. Main 12v rechargers are: for 18v batteries for power tools, AA x AAA recharger for various small devices (most of these type will eventually be USB rechargeable anyway and USB C is improving and becoming more common over time), laptops. For a blender etc, I think the cook in the family has her eye on a unit that will be 12v rechargeable that is portable etc that may suit us. Anything we buy we make sure has this capability as it exists if you look around eg. vacuum sealer other stuff is becoming USB chargeable eg. head torch, ipads etc. Rechargeable Lithium batteries will continue to remove the need for 240v inverters.
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Old 02-03-2018, 05:29   #6
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Re: Portable Inverter

Thanks to all. Glad I asked, because it will save me > $1000 by not doing the installed inverter. Now I'll move on to my other projects.
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Old 02-03-2018, 13:21   #7
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Re: Portable Inverter

I have a 1,500W inverter and a portable, 140W inverter. The only benefit of the smaller inverter is that it is fanless, so I use it for TV and laptop. The bigger one gets used for the microwave (you can't beat the convenience), the vacuum cleaner (you need a powerful, 500W+ motor to be able to run decent air through a HEPA filter), some corded power tools (much better productivity), the washing machine, and a small portable steam washer, it is 700W. It is just convenient. With the smaller inverter you will constantly switch devices on and off, it will overload at times and cut the TV during a movie - not ideal.
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