Solar panel choices, flexible or rigid? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 02-02-2018, 07:35 AM   #1
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Solar panel choices, flexible or rigid?

Because our energy needs are rather small, as is our camper, and after some recommendations from board members, I've decided on a small portable system I can set up in the morning to track the sun during the day. Renogy makes a 50 watt rigid panel kit, 27"x24" and Dokio makes an 80 watt flexible kit. 22"x40", foldable to 22"x20" The Renogy costs more than the Dokio but price is not a determining factor in this scenario. Both of these will fit upright behind the front seat of our tv, which is the best place I can think of to transport it. I've read pros and cons of both types of panels but am looking for some opinions from users of either type before I make my decision. Any recommendations?
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Old 02-02-2018, 10:28 AM   #2
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The portable ones are great . for my rental trailers i go with roof mount for the reasons of theft socker ball fun ect. on my roof i put oak blocks glued to the fiberglass so no holes in the roof.then i mount the panel to the blocks .on my bigfoot they have been ther 9 years .
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Old 02-02-2018, 10:57 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MAP 56 View Post
The portable ones are great . for my rental trailers i go with roof mount for the reasons of theft socker ball fun ect. on my roof i put oak blocks glued to the fiberglass so no holes in the roof.then i mount the panel to the blocks .on my bigfoot they have been ther 9 years .
I think that idea a lot as long as the mounting blocks are secured well since I have heard of the infamous case where it appears that the gel-coat separated and a panel flew off on the highway.

And I might use Marine Board / Starboard since it will basically last forever, esp. if glassed into the main fiberglass of the roof. Looks like you can get eight 2x2 inch, by one inch thick mounting blocks of Starboard for under $20 shipped (a 8x4 inch sheet that you cut into 2x2 blocks).
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Old 02-02-2018, 11:12 AM   #4
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Good idea imade the blocks drew i line around them and ground the spots with 36 grit and applied no more nails .then i use large pop rivets they dont move .I am an autobody tek and fixed corvets for years.
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Old 02-02-2018, 11:16 AM   #5
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I would like to permanently mount my solar panel on the roof of my trailer but I'm concerned about hail which we often get, sometimes as big as golf balls.
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Old 02-02-2018, 11:18 AM   #6
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I did this on my bigfoot as well .And i will use white box liner over the roof as well
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Old 02-02-2018, 12:12 PM   #7
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I recommend that read and understand the specifications and determine which would work best for you.
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Old 02-02-2018, 01:45 PM   #8
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I just read the specifications for a few brands of flexible solar panels. All had a statement warranting 80% of new output at 5 years. My non-flexible portable panel that same rating is for 20 years.
Like I said read the specifications, all the specifications. If some things aren't specified ask yourself why.
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Old 02-02-2018, 01:56 PM   #9
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Solar panel choices, flexible or rigid?

Thank you Byron!
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Old 02-02-2018, 02:01 PM   #10
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Name: Shirley
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Suitcase solar

We have used the Renogy 100w suitcase model for a couple of years and been very pleased. We mounted the controller in the camper (they come mounted on the back of the panel but will leave them separate if you request that.) The suitcase is great protection during travel, and fits behind the driver's seat of our Nissan Frontier.
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Old 02-02-2018, 03:56 PM   #11
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We have used the Renogy 100w suitcase model for a couple of years and been very pleased. We mounted the controller in the camper (they come mounted on the back of the panel but will leave them separate if you request that.) The suitcase is great protection during travel, and fits behind the driver's seat of our Nissan Frontier.
Looks like a pretty good choice. "25-year transferable power output warranty: 5 year/95% efficiency rate, 10 year/90% efficiency rate, 25-year/80% efficiency rate"
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Old 02-03-2018, 09:42 AM   #12
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I installed a Renogy 100 watts, 3 years ago, following the instructions on these videos and it works very well.
I regularly check the strength of the installation and nothing moves.
Very satisfied.

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Old 02-03-2018, 11:08 AM   #13
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As long as we are posting videos...
FF to 40 seconds to learn that this guys panel flew off on the highway:

Then FF to 4:00 in part two of his video to learn that his solar panel brackets were mounted with 3M VHB tape and the failure was after four years (if you can hear him over the wind noise).

and he is going to use the same mounting method but check it more often.., discuss.

BTW, if his next panel flies off on the highway and into another vehicle killing or injuring someone, these videos he posted will come in very handy when he gets sued.
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