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Author Topic: Can you folks post your Solar Panel installs and recommendations.  (Read 4146 times)
Zeroclearance
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« on: August 31, 2009, 08:58:03 AM »

I have seen a few postings that some have installed a few solar panels on your bus.   In the larger picture the dollar spent might not be a wise investment.    But if you want to keep all your batteries topped off and your fridge maintained as a luxury>> what are your real world experiences?  There are alot of new technologies out there right now.   210 watt panels and greater.   More wattage for less footprint.

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busdriver58
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« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2009, 09:09:44 AM »

I also have interest in this
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redbus
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« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2009, 09:26:33 AM »

I have 4 140w panels and 4 AGM 8d batterys.We make 2 pots of coffee a day and have a  household type refer. When boondocking we run the genset about 1 or 2 hours a day. Hope that helps.

Terry
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Terry
"Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, Believe in them, and try to follow them." ~Louisa May Alcott~
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Merlin-PV
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« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2009, 09:32:33 AM »

     Depends on what your total usage amounts to. We are total electric, No Gas what so ever. 8- 110 watt adjustable panels mounted on the roof 4 8d lifeline agms 2- 2000 watt inverters only about 1/2 enough power need another 400 watts at least need to run a small generator 3 to 4 hours a day (in the evening) to top off charge. When we shower we start the main generator as the water heaters are electric also, works for me. Merlin  
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Dreamscape
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« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2009, 04:22:29 AM »

Bump!

I want to know more too! Wink There has to be many more of us who have done this, so come on guys and gals, show us your stuff!

Of course I would have to remove all the roof warts to make it work, but this is an interesting subject.

Paul
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MattC
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« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2009, 08:03:23 AM »

Me as well.  I'm rather reluctant to goto some place and buy they "RV" package.  LoL.  I am considering 4x200+watt panels with appropriate charger.  Figure it'd give a pretty good sip of power to four T105 batteries.
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MCI 102A3 / 6V92 / HT740
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cody
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« Reply #6 on: September 01, 2009, 08:10:07 AM »

I'm being told their are several kinds of voltaic cells to choose from, some older and less efficient some new styles that are highly efficient, even some built into a flexible backing that curves onto the bus roof, logically that would seem to make the most sence to me cause the position of the sun changes thruout the day and I'm thinking that a curved panel would be in contact with more direct rays for longer periods, but I know nothing about these things and am trying to figure out the same problems, I see where Northern tool seems to have a lot of them and at what seem to be reasonable prices but I'm being told to wait at least 2 years cause of new technology that supposedly is coming out, ahhhhhhh who knows lol.
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redbus
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« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2009, 08:42:08 AM »

Pics of the top of my bus.<center>
<a href="http://s635.photobucket.com/albums/uu75/1984redbus/?action=view&current=IMG_0263.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://i635.photobucket.com/albums/uu75/1984redbus/IMG_0263.jpg" border="0" alt="Front to rear">[/url]


</center>
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Terry
"Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, Believe in them, and try to follow them." ~Louisa May Alcott~
www.awayweare.blogspot.com/
redbus
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« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2009, 08:44:45 AM »

That did not work I'll try later.
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Terry
"Far away there in the sunshine are my highest aspirations. I may not reach them, but I can look up and see their beauty, Believe in them, and try to follow them." ~Louisa May Alcott~
www.awayweare.blogspot.com/
MattC
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« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2009, 08:45:39 AM »

Aye, I heard there are more efficient and flexible panels on the horizon.  However, I think I'll try the water now, and let those more adventurous do the Beta Testing on the new technology.  I'll try and get in on it around new-panel v.1.2 or so.  

I'm going for ~18v panels, not sure brand yet, was looking at www.sunelec.com and a couple other places.  I've noticed that there are no shortage of shops out there touting good prices, but charging twice that of other shops.  

However I'm just SHOOTING IN THE DARK.   If any solar wonk out there wants to chime in and help us......

=)

Matt
« Last Edit: September 01, 2009, 08:49:08 AM by MattC » Logged

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loosenut
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« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2009, 09:21:42 AM »

Even though the thumbnail doesn't show up on Redbus's when I clicked on it his pictures show up in another window.

Very nice looking bus.

Mike
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Sold 85 Neoplan 33ft 6V92ta, sadly busless
cody
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« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2009, 09:23:57 AM »

Yep, terry has a great bus, and it is red, very red lol.
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Jeremy
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« Reply #12 on: September 01, 2009, 09:26:46 AM »

There was a member on here with (I'm 90% sure) a Van Hool conversion which had what appeared to be a very effective and well thought-out solar panel install. He had spent quite a lot of money on it, but clearly knew what he was talking about and it looked to be a good case study for those (including me) who intend to do the same thing eventually.

Unfortunately, I cannot remember the guy's name, and I haven't seen him post for quite a while. Any of the older members recognise the person I am talking about?

Jeremy
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busdriver58
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« Reply #13 on: September 01, 2009, 09:56:12 AM »

Someone who could help writing something like "RV Solar energy pack for Busnut dummies"? (like me)
« Last Edit: September 01, 2009, 09:58:28 AM by busdriver58 » Logged

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Jerry W Campbell
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« Reply #14 on: September 01, 2009, 02:17:23 PM »

Hello Bus friends, 
    Electricity is directly connected to lifestyle.  Some people do without things and wish they had more. Other people didnít want those things in the first place.  If you live in places where there is no electricity then the question is not ďwhat about my investment?Ē but is  ďhow much is it going to cost me?Ē.  If you just want to go camping for the weekend you need very little. If you want to live instead of camp then you need a lot more.
What you should do I donít know. only you know your power needs. So Iíll tell you what I did.

My goal is to live comfortably wherever I go and have a refer/freezer, bake my own bread, have all my electrical tools, pressure washer, compressor, computers, tv, washer/dryer, satellite internet, Ham radio gear, and on and on. And for this to cost me as close to nothing as is possible.  Last winter we lived for four months in a very beautiful place but with no services. It cost us two $278 a month to live like kings. The bus now runs on WVO. So Iím getting close.
   
This is what I designed and built and bought for $12,000
1580 watts solar,   10 158 watt panels  with roof racks
Outback combiner with circuit breakers
1580 amps batteries,  8 L-16H 395 amp 6 volt batteries
2 Mx 60 mppt 70 amp charge controllers
3000 watt Prosine sinewave inverter/ 120 amp charger
Trimetric 2020 battery monitor.
400 watt wind turbine
2000 watt inverter generator for backup battery charger (which Iíve never used)
and cables and wires and breakers and fuses and.

I have been working on the bus for 6 years and have only used the power from the bus for tools. When I pull up to our cabin in Oregon We connect to the house to provide power to the house no the other way around.  Iíve long since forgotten about the money. Now I have free electricity. In the sun, My batteries are fully charged at 12:00 or 1:00. Then I use the things that draw heavy juice. The batteries are still at 100% when the sun goes down.

I heard a guy on tv not to long ago say ď I cannot recommend to you decadence as a way of life but itís always worked for me.
Good Luck
Jerry
Remember we only have now, letís make the most of it.
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