Which Zamp Solar Portable 230W or 140W - Page 2 - Fiberglass RV


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Old 12-18-2018, 01:42 PM   #21
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Name: John
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Originally Posted by PeteRissler View Post
How about the Zamp 180 portable?
Hi Pete,

The 180W portable was not a model offered by Casita and we wanted to keep everything simple and order a turn-key TT that was ready for a shake down camping trip on the same day we picked the trailer up.

Most comments on this thread made me feel that the 140 Watt was more than enough for the single 12V 100 amp/hour battery offered by Casita. I also liked the smaller size and the 33 lbs weight of the 140 portable.
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Old 12-19-2018, 11:47 AM   #22
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Name: Andy
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Solar Charger

I boondock several times a year and use a Zamp 80 watt panel - it works well as long as there's some sun. I personally think the 140W would be more than satisfactory. The only benefit of more wattage is shortening charging time (and this may be important to you). I'd rather have less weight.
Also, some solar panels are waterproof (like Zamp). BTW, you might want to put it up on a table to preclude someone walking into your panel.
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Old 12-19-2018, 12:05 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by AndylikesOTMusic View Post
I boondock several times a year and use a Zamp 80 watt panel - it works well as long as there's some sun. I personally think the 140W would be more than satisfactory. The only benefit of more wattage is shortening charging time (and this may be important to you). I'd rather have less weight.
Also, some solar panels are waterproof (like Zamp). BTW, you might want to put it up on a table to preclude someone walking into your panel.
We were thinking we should flag the Zamp system to prevent someone from walking into it but a small table might be simpler and useful, as a table, when we are not using the solar system.
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Old 12-19-2018, 06:18 PM   #24
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There is no good answer to this question. It's like asking if blondes have more fun. There are just too many variables.

If you want to really rough it and can do without most of the things that we take for granted in modern life then you may not need any solar at all. If you like your comforts and can't stand to sweat then you need a really big solar setup or a generator.

You probably fall between these two extremes. Most likely you will want a few creature comforts but don't mind doing without the bigger power users if it means enjoying remote places.

If money was no object you wouldn't be looking at an FGRV. You'd be looking at pusher motor homes with big tow behinds. So keeping economy in mind but allowing for some comforts I'd suggest that you stay with the panel you have selected. Here's why:

To get full performance out of your panel you would have to keep it oriented to the sun. If you just set it and forget it you will be lucky to get half of the rating in amp-hours per day.

Some days the sun just doesn't shine very much. This is the biggest weakness of solar.

It is more likely that over time your power use will go up rather than down.

A decent controller will take care of the niceties.

As they age, solar panels lose efficiency. In a few years it won't do what it will today. You need to plan for some losses.

It is far better to have and not need than to need and not have. This is a nearly universal truth.

I don't think 50 lbs is too much to handle but if you do then maybe that is your decider.

Are you handy enough to turn a solar panel into an awning or window shade? That could obviate the weight.
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Old 12-19-2018, 09:02 PM   #25
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according to some people you probably need over 1KW of solar power.
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Old 12-21-2018, 03:41 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Byron Kinnaman View Post
according to some people you probably need over 1KW of solar power.
3 KW would be almost enough, as long as you didn't want to have too many things running at once and the sun was really bright.
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