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Thread: mobile "office"

  1. #1
    Van Enthusiast
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    mobile "office"

    Lost my office job due to the pandemic, so decided to start my own business from mi casa.
    Surveying and drawing using CAD.

    After sketching out on paper then going home to draw in cad I would always find measurements I forgot to take.

    So, If I draw on site and realize I forgot something I can hop out the van and get it, instead of driving back on forth from my home office to the location I am surveying.

    Laptop battery is supposed good for ~2 hours but running .cad program doubt it will last that long, I only tried it once not plugged in and power dropped rapidly. there is no simple plug and play to recharge the laptop battery from the DC power in the van so I bought a DC to AC inverter/converter. seems like adding a unnecessary step but that's where I'm at.

    Read one post here on the forum, that said the alternator is not tough enough to recharge extra draw, even tho that was most likely specific to the US version 84-89, I would play it safe and go another route, for now at least. Benefits are, I can use what I have on hand.

    I have a trickle charger for small motorcycle batteries. I will attach the quick connect to the battery and drop through the side of the trey and recharge once I get back home.
    I have room in the van battery trey to hold a small motorcycle battery.

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    Wanted to make sure my idea would work, the motorcycle battery is 12v like the van.

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    Besides, keeping the monitor on and working to see how long that small battery will keep everything powered up, I will have to use it in the field.
    Or Monday jump in the van and put my office at a nice park or in front of a taco stand and eat good while I'm working.

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    Ill be back at it Monday. After I get another cheap battery from Walmart.
    Not that I ride the motorcycle regularly.... so I don't know may just yank that Grom Battery out and use it.
    I was a member for 2 years before I bought my van.
    Vandi-

  2. #2
    Van Fan
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    Re: mobile "office"

    Just a thought to simplify your setup. I do a lot of traveling in my van and like you wanted a way to charge my laptop. I purchased one of these (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1) and it does a nice job of charging my laptop through the rear power port (aka cig lighter). Just a thought.

  3. #3
    Van Enthusiast
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    Re: mobile "office"

    thats kinda what I was looking for, thanks for posting it.

    My laptop asks for 180W to charge, that one shows only max 90W, don't think it would keep up unfortunately.

    With this current set up I'll be able to use a monitor as well, which is nice cuz I got bad eyes
    I was a member for 2 years before I bought my van.
    Vandi-

  4. #4
    Van Enthusiast
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    Re: mobile "office"

    updates,

    Got rid of the clamps and used the pig tails from the lighter plug-in.

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    So instead of clamping on to the battery terminals its bolted on.

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    Fits nicely, still need to get something to secure it better than a bungie cord.

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    I only got about 2 hours out of that battery to run the laptop and the monitor.
    then about an hour till the laptop battery dropped to 25%. Monitor worked throughout.

    Worst case scenario is I take an extension cord with me and plug in at whatever building im surveying.

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    I was a member for 2 years before I bought my van.
    Vandi-

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