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Hallvalla
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 10:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

teej wrote:
Quote:
Looking at all possible ways to route the
wires before I actually do this.


FWIW, I followed the quick release lead of GW when I rigged mine, a 65w Kyocera panel. I fashioned some quick release hardware for the roof, and a 50' extension cord from 12-2 landscape wire, and some connectors a friend gave me that are from the RV/trailer world.

The front rail of the panel secures snugly under the rubber padded, forward facing aluminum roof mount tabs, while the stainless steel bolts (tapped and screwed thru the rear rail of the panel) slide through the aft mounts, secured with a split washer and wingnut. I wanted some redundancy; even if a wingnut came off, I think the panel would probably stay put because of the way the tabs engage the front rail. I added rubber feet to the bottom of the panel to:

1. avoid damaging panel or poptop
2. allow clearance for the underside j-box of the panel
3. slight compression when fitting under front tabs so everything stays snug.

Slightly exacting getting the tolerances just right, there is some height adjustability in the rooftop tabs. Now that it is done it is very fast to set up, has not required adjustment, and has yet to become loose in any way. Took a bit o' figuring so maybe this might help someone else too. I bet there is a more elegant solution but I used what I had available.

The 12-2 landscape wire fits easily right out the driver door, doesn't get pinched when closed, and is sufficient for the length run and power of this system.

We liked the options for roof use, tripod use, and easy stowing for security when needed.

And I can relate to the trepidation drilling those roof holes:
Looks like our tent (1986) is getting tired. . .


teej, thanks for this - I think I'm going to do exactly the same with my 135w Kyocera. I'm getting tired of stowing it in the bunk and taking it out each trip. I've been trying to figure out a solution and have also looked at the GoWesty mounting setup. Too bad they don't sell it separate from their kit. Makes business sense, I guess.

Not sure if you wrote down all of the parts and sizes, but if you did, I'd really appreciate the specs. Thanks again.
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sunseeker52
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 15, 2011 7:55 am    Post subject: Solar on my Westy Reply with quote

Mounted one over the storage bin and the other using the existing roof mount bolt holes. I have solar all day,provided your parked East to West.[/img]
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teej
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 8:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Looking at all possible ways to route the
wires before I actually do this.


FWIW, I followed the quick release lead of GW when I rigged mine, a 65w Kyocera panel. I fashioned some quick release hardware for the roof, and a 50' extension cord from 12-2 landscape wire, and some connectors a friend gave me that are from the RV/trailer world.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


The front rail of the panel secures snugly under the rubber padded, forward facing aluminum roof mount tabs, while the stainless steel bolts (tapped and screwed thru the rear rail of the panel) slide through the aft mounts, secured with a split washer and wingnut. I wanted some redundancy; even if a wingnut came off, I think the panel would probably stay put because of the way the tabs engage the front rail. I added rubber feet to the bottom of the panel to:

1. avoid damaging panel or poptop
2. allow clearance for the underside j-box of the panel
3. slight compression when fitting under front tabs so everything stays snug.

Slightly exacting getting the tolerances just right, there is some height adjustability in the rooftop tabs. Now that it is done it is very fast to set up, has not required adjustment, and has yet to become loose in any way. Took a bit o' figuring so maybe this might help someone else too. I bet there is a more elegant solution but I used what I had available.

The 12-2 landscape wire fits easily right out the driver door, doesn't get pinched when closed, and is sufficient for the length run and power of this system.

We liked the options for roof use, tripod use, and easy stowing for security when needed.

And I can relate to the trepidation drilling those roof holes:

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Looks like our tent (1986) is getting tired. . .
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Timwhy
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 5:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

WSideWitneSS wrote:
So far so good. I have the 50w mounted on the top and I can connect the 85w as needed. I also now have all 3 batteries connected with yandinas allowing all batteries to be charged via alternator, A/C, or solar. Very Happy Very Happy

I tell you...drilling that first hole in the fiberglass top is a heartstopper. I measured and measured and measured and was still scared. I think it turned out really well though.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.



Here's my rat's nest of wiring right now. I 'll clean it up pretty soon and hopefully find a better and more permanent spot for the terminal posts / disconnects.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


I plan on getting a panel this winter and install it in the spring. Where you have your panel
mounted is where I plan on doing mine as well. Do you have any pics you can post
of where you routed the wires into the van. Looking at all possible ways to route the
wires before I actually do this.
Thanks......................Tim
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

hook up aux battery relay as per instructions. hook up charge controller to the aux battery. With a panel that size you could hook the charge controller output to both sides of the aux relay through an SPDT switch and change the current to your start battery on demand, if you're so inclined.
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westynova
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am running a 130W Panel through a Charge Controller (CC). I am also going to install the GW Aux Battery Kit. Can I wire the Aux Battery kit directly to the battery or do I have to go through a CC. Reading the GW Instruction (No Solar Panel), I can hook up directly to the battery.

Any advice?
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pb24ss
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I choose option A, although mine are both permanently mounted.

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WSideWitneSS
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 22, 2010 12:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So far so good. I have the 50w mounted on the top and I can connect the 85w as needed. I also now have all 3 batteries connected with yandinas allowing all batteries to be charged via alternator, A/C, or solar. Very Happy Very Happy

I tell you...drilling that first hole in the fiberglass top is a heartstopper. I measured and measured and measured and was still scared. I think it turned out really well though.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.



Here's my rat's nest of wiring right now. I 'll clean it up pretty soon and hopefully find a better and more permanent spot for the terminal posts / disconnects.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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madspaniard
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

WSideWitneSS wrote:
madspaniard wrote:
A makes more sense to me


Why is that?


It makes more sense to do as in Option A and have the distr post doing its job for both panels (connect/disconnect panels when needed)
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PDXWesty
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What I did was similar, but I connected my solar panels to the charge controller, then connected the charge controller to some distribution posts, then connected the batteries to the posts. Grounds can all be common. Either way, your "A" scheme looks like the way to go with what you're suggesting.
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WSideWitneSS
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 6:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

madspaniard wrote:
A makes more sense to me


Why is that?
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A makes more sense to me
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WSideWitneSS
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2010 1:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Okay, so here's a simple schematic. I just want to know if one choice is better than the other.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 10:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah...tried to take a shortcut. FAILURE!! Embarassed I'll write a simple schematic and post it tomorrow.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've done quite a bit of wiring with multiple batteries and solar panels, but it's difficult to follow your description without a visual. Do you have a schematic to post and take a look at?.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does anyone see any change in effects from these two scenarios?

A) Having both panels connected to the distribution posts with a 3rd wire pair going to the CC, vs.

B) 2 wire pairs going to the PV input on the CC, 1 pair directly to the rooftop panel and the 2nd pair going to the distribution posts for connect/disconnect of the 2nd panel

Either setup will accomplish the same goal for me.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 1:35 pm    Post subject: Controller Reply with quote

This is the controller I'm using. I like the fact that I can charge two different battery banks leaving my future options open. The remote digital panel makes for a clean and useable install.

http://www.morningstarcorp.com/en/sun-saver-duo
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 12:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tencentlife wrote:
And drop the diodes.


Interesting, I might just give this a try. And yes....I meant 3 wire pairs. And no, I don't have a mppt controller.....yet. Smile
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 12:20 pm    Post subject: Diodes Reply with quote

Good to know info about Diodes. I'll yank mine and see if it helps my current throughput.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 11, 2010 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Diodes in PV circuits are, like, Pleistocene technology. Your charge controller will isolate the panels whenever they do not provide charge and prevent reverse current discharge at night. ANY charge controller sold today provides this protection, it is one of the most basic and essential features. Diodes cost current, you want them gone, and your charge controller renders them redundant.



Quote:
So when I'm camping I'll have 3 wires (all of appropriate gauge, of course) connected to the terminal posts: 1) to 50w panel 2) to 85w panel 3) to charge controller. I figure this should work since the panels have diodes.

Will this setup work? Anything that I'm not considering?


I take it you mean three wire pairs, not three wires. If so your concept is correct. You will have a wire pair from your charge controller's battery output connections to the battery, plus and minus. On the PV input connections of the CC, you will have two pairs connected in parallel, one to each panel. Either or both panels can then be connected at any time. The fact that the panels are of different wattages doesn't matter except with an MPPT-type CC, which I doubt you have at this small size. They must both be wired to produce a nominal 12V (some panels can be wired for either 12 or 24), and their amperages added together must be lower than the maximum rated amperage of your CC, as was already pointed out. So long as those conditions are met, and wire sizes are sufficient for the amperages on each circuit, you're good to go.

And drop the diodes.
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