Welcome to Manins' truck camper project

Inverter

A big inverter is needed to run the 2-area deLonghi induction cooktop. The cooktop is rated at 3600 W but we envisage using it at no more than ~2000 W. There are heaps of inverters on eBay and elsewhere, but experience says no to "HIP-xx", "Tomahawk" and "W7" types. A Projecta 2000 W would be good, but it does not really have a big enough output safety margin and it is too long. The inverter has to fit in a space 430 mm wide x 380 mm high x say 250 mm deep, under the camper passenger seat.

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Victron Phoenix Inverter in position in the compartment under the camper passenger seat. An isolation switch on the left cuts the +12 V.

I settled on the Victron Phoenix 12V 3000VA-2500W Inverter, a Pure Sine Wave type that has an excellent reputation with 5 year warranty and dimensions of 258 mm wide x 362 mm high x 218 mm deep. Its only negative other than price is the weight: 18 kg. Bought from Energy Connections on eBay, I also procured a Phoenix Inverter Control Panel at the same time.

Installation and operating instructions are here for reference (2 MB download). The DC cabling for the inverter is described on the 'DC Power Wiring' page, and the 230 V wiring is on the page of the same name.

With extended use, the inverter can get hot unless well ventilated. It incorporates a fan and has clearance on all sides (but not the top, which is close to the base of the seat cushion). I have included a big vent in the hatch door, and drilled a large number of holes in a pattern of two rows in the wall above the touch screen. The natural ventilation should help.

The Control Panel for the Inverter is set into a cutout in the wall near the cooktop. A CAT-5 cable runs from the inverter, up the wall and across the camper in the channel below the pop-top, to join to the Control Panel.

A plastic vent in the hatch to the compartment housing the inverter.

Two rows of holes drilled in the wall above the touch panel provide ventilation.

Victron Phoenix Power Control Panel is on the wall near the cooktop.


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