PDA

View Full Version : Now for a Solar Panel 316 Ambo CDI


Thaipantsman
12-05-2011, 05:54 AM
I have wired in a second battery-a ripper battery and stored away safely in a cabinet behind the seats. Nice and streamline. I have been tossing up a solar panel installation and looking for some time now.and came across a Company with 12 V mono crystalline silicon Panels 200W. Panel $395, Brackets, $50 and Regulator $20. This Panel is going on the roof either on top of the Air Con at the back or at the Front. Does anyone have a panel installed? Do they whistle as you go along? Worth noting while the fold up Panels are great I feel the weight and storage would be a pain.:bash:

mean_in_green
12-05-2011, 09:13 PM
Have a search with the feature in the blue bar above. Have plenty of reading time set aside though!

Amboman
12-06-2011, 12:47 PM
200w dimensions would be 981 cms x 1485 cms or 3ft x 5ft minimum which won't fit
on the rear air con, are you sure you need 200w that's potentially 16 amps continuous power availability.

jmoller99
12-06-2011, 01:43 PM
I have 2 125 watt panels for my roof. They will fit, but I need to weld together a frame to attach them to (I don't want to casually make any holes in my roof). I also have an additional 30 watt panel to work as a battery tender for the Sprinters main battery - I never want that to be in a poor state of charge. My panels are not yet installed.

250 watts is really not a whole lot if you plan to live off it for any length of time. So I have to agree that 200 watts is a good start point. Never assume that they will be running at more than 50% to 70% of rated power unless you can tilt them directly at the sun - mine will lay parallel with the roof of the Sprinter. PV panels work better when its cold out (hot solar panels are less efficient - which is why you can't mount them directly on the roof; you have to have at least 1 inch (24mm) of open space beneath them. You won't see peak power for more than 4 or 5 hours a day if the panels are stationary. Any shade on the panels may stop it from producing power - the individual cells are all wired in series - if any one stops producing power, it prevents the rest of the cells that are in series with it in the panel from producing.

I went with schottky diodes (30 amp, 40 volts) because instead of a .7 V drop, you only have a .3 volt drop in them (PV sites talk a lot about this, and often sell them) - no reason to throw away anymore power than you have to.

I have a lot of 12 V accessories that will run off the vans alternator when the engine is running, or off my house battery pack (when it's turned on for use) - that is what the diodes are for - keeping the power sources separate, but still available.

My next door neighbor's house is covered with Solar Panels. His system ties into the city power grid and he pumps power back into it during parts of the day. It works pretty well.

Here are what my 2 125 watt panels look like.

1hen2ducks
12-06-2011, 06:46 PM
Solar Sallie's 195 watt single panel is 4ft X 5ft and fits nicely between the two Fantastic fans.
http://i.imgur.com/MPwtyl.jpg
Panel powers two 175 amp/hour batteries that run a 40 watt fridge full time when on the road or camping, plus sound and lighting in the evenings. Batteries also run an induction hob for indoor cooking.
I have never ever been low on house battery power.
But,
I do choose to park in the sun (mostly).
http://i.imgur.com/ErG90l.jpg

Colorado_Al
12-06-2011, 07:17 PM
No drilling required to secure your panel.
Use 3M VHB tape (strongest you can find) and 1"x1" aluminum box.
See here:
http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showpost.php?p=145702&postcount=77

PS- I bet the $20 controller is a POS. Most 200 watt panels are not 12v and you will want an MPPT charge controller to use your panel most efficiently.

Oldfartt
12-06-2011, 08:07 PM
Colorado Al has a system similar to mine.
I have used L section aluminium angle, run full length along the sides of the panels, but open at each end, which is bolted to the sides of the solar panels, 2 x 85 watt. The the L section is glued to the roof with Sikaflex 291. The cross section area of glued surface is 48" x 2" x 2 = 192" sq. At 14.7 Lbs /sq in that represents a force of 2822 lbs force per panel. It aint going to come off!

The $20 solar regulator will be totally useless (and possibly dangerous) for panels of the size quoted. A MPPT controller is needed to maximize performance. Try not to skimp here. Google MPPT for articles explaining this.
Colorado Al is using a well known and made MPPT controller which would be suitable for your purpose.

I have two vans with solar panels glued this way . The older van has been in use for over four years now.

Cheers

Ross

Thaipantsman
12-06-2011, 11:41 PM
hi amboman-you're dead right! I was measuring up this morning. there is a removable panel on the top of the zircon/rear light set up. The panel is 1400 by 570. this panel is held down by 12 screws. The panel is like what a bonnet is to a motor. Open it to access all the air-con and whatever else is up there. there is red black and yellow wiring. my plan is to get a a solar panel to fit the removable panel, also have to take into account the panel mounting bracket. hopefully may be able to follow or tag onto some existing wiring? what do you think. perhaps a 90W 1185 by 545 panel would be enough for my uses-fridge-charger for phones and laptops etc.

Thaipantsman
12-06-2011, 11:48 PM
great post!

Thaipantsman
12-06-2011, 11:51 PM
fantastic van! panels look excellent!

Thaipantsman
12-07-2011, 12:01 AM
cheers Ross. You are right. Auto Elec Guy advised me yesterday about the $20 Regulator. I was quoted this amount by Top one Solar, obviously just a salesperson.

Thaipantsman
12-07-2011, 12:16 AM
200 W panel is 12 V. You're most likely right about the controller/regulator. I asked which regulator would be suitable for this panel and he quoted me 19.95. I would go with you guys advise me. This is still a new area in Australia, not many Sprinters running about with solar panels on the roof. Most Auto Elec will sting you at the install stage as well as give conflicting information.

Amboman
12-07-2011, 06:20 AM
The 90w which fits sounds like the best deal,

I have lifted that panel off and there are two fan motors mounted to the bottom of it
that is where i have mounted my panel, on the passenger side of the van there will be two unused electrical connectors they can be located easily you will need to drop the last set of screws up near the filter of the rear aircon. The plugs were used used for the light & sirens you can run the wires through there and down to the passenger side to underneath the seat where the battery is. The connectors are located about 2 foot down and about six inches in at the rear top you may need to drill out the 4 pop rivets to access on the many blanked off patches on the rear fibreglass canopy. As the aircon panel is mesh ventilated i would think that some clearance to let airflow under the solar panel which may also help to cool it.

I live in Sunbury if you feel like a drive PM for details

Thaipantsman
12-12-2011, 08:47 AM
I haven't bought a panel yet. You may have some ideas? Some assistance would be very much appreciated! A drive to Sunbury would be good. Did you install your own panel?
Roger 0418994464 or home office 95987868

Thaipantsman
12-13-2011, 01:24 AM
I feel like a drive!
Roger 0418994464 or 95987868

sterling
12-13-2011, 01:40 AM
we run a 130 Watt Kyocera that is set into the aluminum (aluminess) roof rack...two 6 volt no maintenance batteries.....your price sounds like a good deal..i think i pd 650 for my panel alone via the web...Solar is where its at!!! runs everything, particularly my 45 qt. Engel refrigerator so well. your gonna love it.

Tuck5000
03-06-2012, 02:20 PM
Do you have any pics of this panel mounted? I would like to see how you attached it to the roof rails...Thanks

Tuck5000
03-10-2012, 04:44 PM
I have 2 125 watt panels for my roof. They will fit, but I need to weld together a frame to attach them to (I don't want to casually make any holes in my roof). I also have an additional 30 watt panel to work as a battery tender for the Sprinters main battery - I never want that to be in a poor state of charge. My panels are not yet installed.

250 watts is really not a whole lot if you plan to live off it for any length of time. So I have to agree that 200 watts is a good start point. Never assume that they will be running at more than 50% to 70% of rated power unless you can tilt them directly at the sun - mine will lay parallel with the roof of the Sprinter. PV panels work better when its cold out (hot solar panels are less efficient - which is why you can't mount them directly on the roof; you have to have at least 1 inch (24mm) of open space beneath them. You won't see peak power for more than 4 or 5 hours a day if the panels are stationary. Any shade on the panels may stop it from producing power - the individual cells are all wired in series - if any one stops producing power, it prevents the rest of the cells that are in series with it in the panel from producing.

I went with schottky diodes (30 amp, 40 volts) because instead of a .7 V drop, you only have a .3 volt drop in them (PV sites talk a lot about this, and often sell them) - no reason to throw away anymore power than you have to.

I have a lot of 12 V accessories that will run off the vans alternator when the engine is running, or off my house battery pack (when it's turned on for use) - that is what the diodes are for - keeping the power sources separate, but still available.

My next door neighbor's house is covered with Solar Panels. His system ties into the city power grid and he pumps power back into it during parts of the day. It works pretty well.

Here are what my 2 125 watt panels look like.



Hey, what kind of panels are you using?

Tuck5000
03-10-2012, 04:50 PM
No drilling required to secure your panel.
Use 3M VHB tape (strongest you can find) and 1"x1" aluminum box.
See here:
http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showpost.php?p=145702&postcount=77

PS- I bet the $20 controller is a POS. Most 200 watt panels are not 12v and you will want an MPPT charge controller to use your panel most efficiently.


This looks like a good way to go, have you had any problems. Panel still hanging on? Do you know if there is a way to remove this tape? Just in case you had to pull the panel for some random reason or change your setup?


Thanks

silasthurman
03-11-2012, 05:04 AM
This is a very basic question to what you guys are talking about, but I'm planning on putting some solar panels on my 08 144in high top sprinter. I've heard that running the solar panel through your current battery could just lead to problems with everything. I have no idea if that's true or not. I was wondering however if I ran solar power just to a separate battery to run some small lights, tv, etc would that potentially work. I'm trying to keep mine as basic as possible and I'm not good with the electrical stuff. I would just like to be able to watch some movies hear and there and not have to worry about the main battery dying. Any help would be great. Thanks
Silas

ebsprintin
03-13-2012, 12:37 AM
I think most people are using the panels to charge a separate battery bank. It's simple, and there is less chance of confusing the sprinter's power systems. That being said when my alternator died I was able to jump my PV system to the starter battery and make my delivery and the shop.

eb

silasthurman
03-17-2012, 07:50 AM
I think most people are using the panels to charge a separate battery bank. It's simple, and there is less chance of confusing the sprinter's power systems. That being said when my alternator died I was able to jump my PV system to the starter battery and make my delivery and the shop.

eb

Thanks