All the times I have gone to a race, both Bonneville and El Mirage, I have wished that my trailer have some sort of battery power. It lacked lighting, AC and DC power, and I was not even sure if the breakaway battery worked. So in the last few weeks I have fixed all that.
Now the trailer has a deep cycle marine battery charged by 45 watt solar panels as well as the truck alternator, a 1000 watt DC-AC inverter for the coffee maker, and interior LED lights that really light up the inside. It was quite a wiring job. Along the way I also replaced the truck receptacle, the trailer connection cord, the breakaway switch and wired in a battery charger.
Here are some pics of my progress:
I started with the Harbor Freight 45 Watt 3 panel Solar Power kit. It comes with the panels, and a solar controller to provide battery charging. Even in the murky Seattle area weather, it still provides enough voltage to charge a battery. The Bonneville sun should turbocharge it!
Next I had to build a battery holder to hold my deep cycle battery. The battery that came with the trailer was just a little motorcycle battery that was just for the breakaway function. I am sure it did not work.
I mounted it on the tongue, but I have seen some that mount beneath the trailer floor. I wanted to use the original wiring, so this is where it went.
Next I mounted the 3 solar panels to the roof of the trailer. I was really nervous about drilling holes in the roof, but I made sure I siliconed all the holes I drilled. The panels are soft mounted and free floating with weather stripping providing cushioning for vibration and bumps.
Along the way, I decided to replace the trailer connector wires and add a new breakaway switch as well as a charger for the vehicle charging system. Now the battery gets charged by the solar panels and the truck when it is connected. The wiring took a little while to figure out since nothing I bought came with a wiring diagram. I also had to get a bigger battery box to hold the rats nest of wiring. I used 4 gauge jumper cables for getting the battery power to the inverter.
I mounted the solar controller and the 1000 watt inverter on the wall of the trailer under a shelf. The controller takes the power from the solar panels and maintains the battery. It also has an output plug for USB charging, and 3 volt and 5 volt outlets.
Next I wired 4 LED RV lights to the ceiling. These LED lights put out a lot more than the incandescent lights and use much less wattage. I could leave these lights on for a week and not discharge the battery.
So that the project I have been working on. Now back to getting the bike ready for BUB.