The parts needed are a power inverter, a deep cell battery, cables to connect these two devices. Motomaster is the brand name of products available across Canada at Canadian Tire. If you are Canadian then you already know about this nationwide chain. If you are not, then when you come to Canada then you must find one and visit it. Quite possibly it is a national treasure! While Motomaster may not be available in your country, the parts you require for a unit like this certainly are. On Amazon a 1000 watt pure sine inverter can be found for about $175, a deep cell battery can have a range in price but one similar to this unit will be in the $200 range, the battery tender is going to be $45, a 100 amp circuit breaker about $25, and probably another $25 for the required cables: so all told you are looking at around $500 U.S. for a DIY unit like this. If you are Canadian, then you already know that you can add at least 35% more to this. It really is that simple to set up a very basic power supply. We have added a trickle charger, a common household storage tub, and a piece of wood. Access to a full-scale battery charger and a generator or household power is required should you drain the deep cell battery right down. Or a solar panel if you intend to stay in an off-grid scenario for a longer time span.
The $50 price tag that you will see on some 1000 watt inverter that you will find may look like a great deal, but remember the old adage that you get what you pay for. That inexpensive unit will be a modified sine wave inverter and may damage some of your equipment. As a layperson, my description of the modified sine wave versus the pure sine wave is this. Modified inverters provide a electricity in a rather chunky form that bounces around. Possibly like waves created by 3 or 4 different sized motorboats – even though the boats are doing circles at nearly the same speed, the boats create different sized waves. The waves all land on the beach but not at all equally. Modified wave inverters work but your equipment has to work a bit harder and, if it is sensitive like your portable hand tools, it could damage them. Pure Sine Wave inverters, on the other hand, have a nice smooth power wave. Soothing like being at the beach with gentle waves, naturally created, of equal size coming in over and over again. Talk to an engineer if you want a more detailed description about the differences between the two. Bottom line, if you run a lot of technology (or in our case medical equipment) then you will want to upgrade your power inverter to a pure sine wave technology versus modified wave technology. The extra cost of a pure sine wave inverter will probably be worth the investment in peace of mind as you know you can run anything without the worry of damage.
The battery is the second thing to consider. How much power do you require? How portable are your needs? A small battery is going to be lighter and thus obviously more portable. The downside is that it may not provide power for a long enough duration. We have a small and thus lightweight battery that we could use for short-term scenarios. We have chosen to go with a Type 27 deep cell single battery for our purpose. Should we require even more ongoing power, we can add a second battery (or we can go extreme and add further pairs of batteries) that will cover our basic needs for several days. Make sure that the cables you use are a heavy enough gauge. We got pre-built 4 gauge wires that are more than enough for the short lengths we are using.