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Bicycle Generator upgrade for a rig Answered

Okay- My boyfriend thinks I'm absolutely crazy, but I would like to modify the bicycle generator a la this instructable. I was hoping to have some way to attach it to an axle of an 18 wheeler tractor. Then the trouble would be hooking up the battery to a generator so we wouldn't have to pay for gas to power the ac and tv when we're sitting still. I'm hoping some good mind out there would have some tips!
Many thanks!


. If you are just charging batteries, no need for the bike/generator, just tap into the truck's electrical system. . You may find it's cheaper to run the motor when parked than lugging all those batteries around all the time.

If its for a 18 wheeler, then its built in system should last for a long time

. Semis carry a lot of battery, but I don't think it's enough to run an A/C unit for very long. Certainly not overnight. If "power the ac" doesn't mean A/C, but instead a DVD player or similar load (light load + won't be running all night), you're probably right.

Could she just add more lead acid batteries (with the same charge as the other batteries as to not cause unequal weird charging) in parallel with the existing batteries?

. Certainly. The altenator/charging system may need to be upgraded, but that shouldn't be a problem. . It's not a good idea to use the starting battery for other loads - if you drain it, you're stuck.

NVM, not the ac! Yeah, just turn it on for 15 mins every hour and that should keep you cool

Look into the DIY airconditioners made out of an ice chest,bilge pump, fan, and radiator/heater core. They run on 12v and wouldn't drain decent truck batteries.

It would mainly be the a/c (air conditioner), but also the fridge, microwave, tv, dvd, pc, printer, and any lights that are needed. We burn about 3/4 of a gallon of fuel per hour idling- not to mention the additional wear on the engine and smog created by it- in fact its illegal to idle for longer than 5 to 30 minutes in some states. We've been looking at getting a pony generator, but even the 1/8 gallon of fuel an hour has us looking pale with diesel the price it is.

. It's gonna take a LOT of battery to drive all that for 6-8 hours. I'm guessing the added mass will cost you more in lost MPG than the fuel used idling. . Check some of the battery sites and see how many batteries you will need and how much they weigh. You need to know the Amp-Hour load of your system - how many amps each item pulls times how many hours it will run. . . That 0.125GPH sounds pretty good compared to the cost of buying batteries and hauling them around. But batteries are getting lighter and cheaper all the time and diesel just gets more expensive.

PS: I can't believe you are the first truckers that have thought about this. See if you can find something out on some of the "big rig" sites.