Solar Panel Installation - no drilling holes - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-05-2013, 08:54 PM   #15
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Byron,

Yes I do have a charge line to the trailer. I really only use the tow vehicle to charge rhe battery in bad 'sun weather'. I try to have as many charging alternatives as possible.

Solutions and equipment we carry vary depending somewhat on our destination. For example, on occasion we have also carried a small 1000 watt generator. I guess the real point is that on the roof the solar panels are always charging.

I guess there's a little bit of 'prepper' in my being. We also have 2-120 watt home made panels in the cellar just in case....

As to roof mounting, we our solution is about as simple as it gets, 3M high bond strength tape, about $8 worth, now in year 3. Weight's a big deal with us, everything else being equal, we seek light solutions.
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Old 09-05-2013, 09:18 PM   #16
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I keep bouncing back and forth on where to Mount a panel and how large of one. I can fit something on my roof between the escape hatch and the front of the trailer 34x42' ish size that really wouldn't be very visible from the street. It would keep my batteries topped off when the caravan is sitting in my parents driveway but I usually like camping in the shade...so that wouldn't help keep the batteries charged. Do I put a 30-50 watt panel on the roof and get a 2nd larger one with a longer cable to setup in the sun for extra charging?

Too many options lol
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Old 09-05-2013, 09:23 PM   #17
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That's the one thing I don't like about modern technology.
TOOOOOOOO many choices. One has to "decide" on something
and it gives a person a head ache.

If I were to go solar I'm thinking I would have a roof mount and
a portable. Seems the shady lots in campgrounds are usually taken
and then it's the sunny ones left. I realize that those who boondock
wind up in the trees.........

I'm thinking I would always carry the generator if I were to boon dock.
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Old 09-05-2013, 10:20 PM   #18
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Best of both worlds: tethered on the ground and moved to graze the solar pasture AND quickly attached to the front rockguard in full sun of high summer. I do store inside the trailer.

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Old 09-05-2013, 10:21 PM   #19
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Sometimes you need more than one solution depending on when and where you go. In the southwest we usually find a lot of sunshine and not a lot of trees, In spring Newfoundland we can have lots of trees and overcast skies or be in portions of Newfoundland without trees, regardless since it's cool in the spring we seek open sites.
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Old 09-05-2013, 11:29 PM   #20
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I do carry my generator, never know when it comes in handy... but I also want to keep my battery charged between adventures... especially since I will be taking Serenity out in the winter time as long as the roads arent icy and the weather forcast is clear!

Always pluses and minuses!
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:23 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deryk View Post
I keep bouncing back and forth on where to Mount a panel and how large of one. I can fit something on my roof between the escape hatch and the front of the trailer 34x42' ish size that really wouldn't be very visible from the street. It would keep my batteries topped off when the caravan is sitting in my parents driveway but I usually like camping in the shade...so that wouldn't help keep the batteries charged. Do I put a 30-50 watt panel on the roof and get a 2nd larger one with a longer cable to setup in the sun for extra charging?

Too many options lol
Deryk,
My 65 Watt panel is 26" x 28" and does all I need.
Kyocera 65 Watt KC65T. Would fit nicely in that 34 x 42" space ( I believe that was what you were saying) I chose that panel because of form factor.

I keep my in the driveway battery charged with a Battery Minder. Beside the tow will top it off when I travel from home to camping site.
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Old 09-06-2013, 03:59 AM   #22
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Amazon has a 100w solar panel with the same plastic "no holes drilled" mount for $238. See it at
http://www.amazon.com/Instapark%C2%A.../dp/B004OZJ4FY
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Old 09-06-2013, 05:56 AM   #23
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Solar panels will still provide some charging, even in filtered sunlight, granted, it's much less than perfectly aimed, direct sun, but with enough watts, you can still have an effective charging system. Most of the campsites where I park the trailer provide both sun and shade at different times. Solar is getting cheaper all the time and my solution is to have 185 watts on the roof, as much as I could fit with the available real estate. Even in less than ideal solar conditions, the array restores the charge in my battery in short order. When you live in the northern states, you don't have very many hours of optimum sunshine. Even at midday, the sun is seldom directly overhead.

The only change I would make if doing it again would be to use the flexible panels that Norm installed. I think they'll even customize the dimensions, which might have made it easier to add more watts.

Also, I'm with Norm. I'm lazy and don't want to be fussing with unpacking and deploying solar panels when I set up my campsite.

Ron
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Old 09-06-2013, 06:41 AM   #24
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Ron,
I choose to not think of us as being lazy but rather as older New Hampshire Yankees that recognize the shortness of life and choose to maximize 'fun' over needless labor.
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:34 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Jay Moeller View Post
Amazon has a 100w solar panel with the same plastic "no holes drilled" mount for $238. See it at
Amazon.com : InstaparkŪ NEW All Black 100W Mono-crystalline Solar Panel, 100 Watt : Patio, Lawn & Garden
That's a pretty good premium for the mounting system. Similar panel for $125 here: Solar Cell, Solar Panel, Solar PV, Solar Products, Charge Controllers, Solar Trackers
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:50 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Thomas G. View Post
That's a pretty good premium for the mounting system. Similar panel for $125 here: Solar Cell, Solar Panel, Solar PV, Solar Products, Charge Controllers, Solar Trackers
And if you read the reviews it appears the mounting system does not come with the panel. Since they show both the black & white versions, I'd contact them if interested before expecting mounting hardware. While it is a fairly expensive panel, the shipping is free, which can be significant, depending on how far you are from the supplier.
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:52 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Jon Vermilye View Post
And if you read the reviews it appears the mounting system does not come with the panel. Since they show both the black & white versions, I'd contact them if interested before expecting mounting hardware. While it is a fairly expensive panel, the shipping is free, which can be significant, depending on how far you are from the supplier.
Good catch.
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Old 09-11-2013, 12:31 AM   #28
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Largish, but 24v and one does it.

Solar Cell, Solar Panel, Solar PV, Solar Products, Charge Controllers, Solar Trackers
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