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Old 05-11-2020, 06:11 PM   #1
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Default Older Roadtrek 190 Popular, Internet? - Older vs newer

I'm looking at older Roadtrek 190 Popular, from 1999 to 2010. One thing I have to have (for work) is good internet connectivity. I looked at the Zion (which is said to be the golden goose,) but I don't want to spend the next 20 years paying for it. My question is how old is too old to set it up for good quality internet connectivity?

I saw a 1999 Roadtrek 190 Popular this weekend but the original owner took out the generator. Has a spots of rust throughout the parts under the van, but it looks like it's just surface rust.

Can solar or a satellite be put on the roof on older models?


Newbie for nomad tech gear.
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Old 05-11-2020, 11:18 PM   #2
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All connectivity issues are after market. The only thing you will be concerned about in your purchase is power. Just an opinion but I think you must have a generator to be able to solve your power options.

Once you have the generator then you can work on your electrical system to reduce the need for it. It is difficult to put enough solar on a B to fill your power needs.

No one, at the moment, has satellite internet on the roof of their B.

Just opinions.
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Old 05-11-2020, 11:31 PM   #3
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Got it. The solar placement has been a concern.... Trying to make sure I can work remotely
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Old 05-12-2020, 01:47 AM   #4
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When the time comes, you will find plenty of help here setting up a state-of-the-art Internet connection. It should not enter into your purchasing decision. The cost is small as a proportion of your purchase price.
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Old 05-12-2020, 04:27 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by sierranighttide View Post
Got it. The solar placement has been a concern.... Trying to make sure I can work remotely
There is limited room on the roof for solar but unless you are going to use a ton of power, it should work. There are examples on this forum.

I can boondock perpetually on 150 watts using a propane fridge but I no longer have to work. My electric budget is usually 15-25 amp hours/day. You will need to work up a solar budget before laying out a system for your needs, wants and desires.

Chevy, Dodge, no preference?
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Old 05-12-2020, 04:46 AM   #6
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Most of the Roadtreks I've looked at, have all been Chevy. I'm open to other chassis.
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Old 05-17-2020, 05:49 PM   #7
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Default stay with Chevy

The Chevy chassis is much better than Dodge. The wheelbase is longer so the handling is much better. I had a 2003 RT190 and never had a problem. If you Google Roadtrek with Dodge chassis handling problems you will see lots of issues. I know dodge fans will disagree, but so be it. Take a look.
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Old 05-18-2020, 12:36 AM   #8
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Lightbulb Consider briefcase solar and a cell booster

We have a 2008 Roadtrek 190 Popular (Chevy based) that we use to boondock all the time and, because of our jobs, we need good internet connectivity.

We set ours up with a WeBoost cellular booster, which has come in very handy for boosting our cell signal from some more remote locations.

While we have a generator on board, we don't like to use it unless necessary because the Onans in the older Roadtreks are noisy. For us, a briefcase solar panel system has worked well to keep the coach batteries going when boondocking. I like the briefcase solar because we have had instances where we were able to park the RT in the shade but drop the solar panel in the sun. You can't do that if the panels are on your roof.

Also, consider small portable solar panels that can be used to charge phones and other small-battery devices. They help take the load off using the briefcase solar to power everything. We have a Renogy and really like it; others have spoken highly of Zamp solar, if you want to check a couple of options out.

Any questions, give a holler -- happy to help.

-Ari
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Old 05-18-2020, 01:19 AM   #9
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We have been here before but just add a lithium battery. It charges quicker from solar and takes less than 30 minutes from the generator charging at a 55 amp rate. I also charge with a 40 amp rate from the alternator.

https://www.classbforum.com/forums/f...stem-8526.html

There are other threads about two other installs, better documented.

The lithium battery needs to be inside and you need to consider winter storage.
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Old 05-18-2020, 01:34 AM   #10
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Quote:
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Got it. The solar placement has been a concern.... Trying to make sure I can work remotely

consider the effect of panels on MPG


the possibility of leaks associated with new penetrations through the roof


and the requirement that the van be parked in the full sun
- hot inside


perhaps consider panels which you can lay out on arrival- in the sun, while you are in the shade


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Old 05-18-2020, 03:22 PM   #11
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Your van itself has little to do with ability to work remotely. If reliable robust internet is required, the biggest factor is where you stay. Unless you have a very expensive and complicated satellite system, you'll need to stay in campgrounds with reliable wifi or in areas with good cell coverage. Cell booster can sometimes help but only if there is a decent signal to boost.
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Old 05-18-2020, 04:01 PM   #12
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Cell booster can sometimes help but only if there is a decent signal to boost.
Cell boosters will only help significantly under very narrow and somewhat uncommon circumstances. Almost always, a WiFi hotspot with a roof-mounted MiMo antenna will be both better-performing and cheaper. With modern cell phones, there is a setting that allows you to place voice calls through the data network.
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