rv Community

Nearing Completion! The RVWA 'Drab to Fab' Project

Susan Carpenter: So at Drab to Fab right now, we are full steam ahead. After a little bit of a delay with the cabinets and with COVID, we are now doing the  Samlex American Inverter. We’re putting the Go Power solar power back on and building some walls, and then we’re going to start doing the cabinets soon.

Shalet Wingo: So I got up super-early this morning. I’m based just south of Atlanta, and I caught a early flight into Chicago and came to Elkhart to volunteer for the RVWA Drab to Fab Re-fab. So my job today is to install the Samlex EVO-2012, which is a three-in-one
inverter. It has an inverter, a battery charger, and a transfer switch all built into one.

Susan: Drab to Fab is all sponsorship-driven, so all the products that are going on there have been donated by sponsors, and today we have Samlex America. We reached out to them because they’re a very great– they’re a great company to work with, and so when we were, you know, investigating who should be a part of this project, when we came to this inverter, it was a no-brainer. It was going to be a Samlex America.

Shalet: This is a new experience for me. I’ve never installed one of these. I’ve been selling them for two years, but I’ve never installed one, so this is exciting and intimidating at the same time, and I’m excited to learn about it and actually install it. It’s a three-in-one device that combines a 2200-watt DC to AC power inverter, a 100-amp battery charger, and a 30-amp transfer switch. Once this is installed in the Drab to Fab trailer, it will become the central hub for the entire power system. You’re probably wondering what this inverter does for an RV. When you plug into Sure Power, the inverter charges your batteries and runs your AC appliances. When you’re boondocking, it senses that Sure Power isn’t available and automatically switches to battery power to run your AC devices.

Susan: This gives the freedom to go anywhere and still have power. Who doesn’t like that? You can be in the middle of a desert. You can be in the middle of a forest, and you don’t have to worry about where’s your power source coming from.

Shalet: I love more people are starting to want to boondock, and you do need solar or some type of power when you’re boondocking ’cause you need to get your slide-outs to go in and out. So you want your batteries to maintain that, so after you’ve been boondocking for a week, you don’t want to be stuck with your slide-outs stuck out. You need that battery to maintain and be charged so that they can go back in so that you can head back in. I mean, you do– you can manually do it, but who wants to do that, you know? It’s awesome that we’re installing lithium batteries in the Drab to Fab trailer, because this inverter charger was specially designed to work with this new type of battery. Its charger is fully customizable, so it will work a variety of lithium batteries. And of course, it works with classic lead-acid batteries as well. One of the biggest differentiators with our EVO series is the additional DC solar input on all units. The advantage for the installer is that they can wire the solar system from the charge controller directly into the EVO. This saves time and centralizes the power system around the EVO. I’m also installing the EVO-RC-Plus, which is the remote. This controls the functionality of the EVO. Basically, it has an SD card, and it controls the data, or you can upload the data to it. So if you have any issues with this, you can upload it onto the computer, and Samlex’s tech team can troubleshoot for you, and help you with any issues you may have. The Samlex DC 3500 Inverter installation kits come with all the cables and fuses you need to safely install your inverter charger into the RV. 

I really enjoy this, and I feel it’s very important to network with other women in the industry, because we all think differently. We bring something different to the table, and we can help one another in our individual companies and expound upon that and basically transition it to fit our needs and possibly learn something new from one another