Solar - Fiberglass RV

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Old 07-16-2015, 05:15 AM   #1
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Name: Bob Ruggles
Trailer: 2015 Escape
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A long time ago I saw a reference to a portable solar panel that folds like a suitcase. I'd like to know the folded size and how it does at keeping batteries charged. Anybody know about these? Thanks

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Old 07-16-2015, 03:21 PM   #2
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Trailer: Escape 19 ft (sold) Escape 21 May 2014
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Check out Solar Cells, Solar Panels, Renewable Energy, Wind Energy, Charge Controllers, Solar Trackers - Solarblvd, They are one seller I have purchased from. It seems the sizes and availability changes frequently so you need to look at their web site for what they are currently stocking.

I believe they are listed as kits. The kits are pretty useless, the reason being the built in controller, wiring and connectors are low quality. I threw all that stuff away and had a pretty good panel with 140 watts. They are heavy at about 45 lbs for my model.

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Old 07-16-2015, 03:45 PM   #3
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Why did you not have ETI install your solar at the factory?
Never in doubt, often wrong
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Old 07-16-2015, 03:57 PM   #4
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Trailer: 2015 Oliver Legacy Elite II - Hull #69
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I have one of these:

From GoPower! It's usually good for 5-8 amps depending.

More than enough to keep ahead of light loads and a refrigerator.

Dimensions are in the link. I find the quality of the components and the wiring to be just fine. Comes with a nice, padded carrying case.
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Old 07-16-2015, 04:07 PM   #5
Name: RogerDat
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Couple of additional options also on Amazon.

When you get right down to it a set of swing down legs with bottom limiter and a cross piece between the legs on any panel give you a portable stand. Hinge two of them together and there you go. But the posts I have seen on DIY version have shown a non-trivial level of workmanship going into making them nice.

Kind of expensive. Wonder if anyone has wired panels for daisy chaining? E.G one 30 panel for a weekend just to keep the battery from running down but if one is going for a long stay in the boondocks carry a second panel of say 50 watts and plug it in to the system to make sure you can withstand or recover faster from a couple of rainy/cloudy days.
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Old 07-16-2015, 06:15 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Ron Merritt View Post
More than enough to keep ahead of light loads and a refrigerator..
I guess you're talking about powering the board on an absorption refrigerator in propane mode. My Dometic pulls 10 amps on DC, so I run on propane, or AC if available.

Checking average usage on their basic 12v compressor unit is 2 amps/hr that's 48 amp hours a day. Under the best sun conditions, no clouds, no trees, panels perfectly aligned to the sun, the Go Power! GP-PSK-120 would only produce 53.6 amp hours of replacement energy with 8 hours of sunlight, at 6.7 amps output (data per the Amazon page). That would be cutting it pretty close even if you had no other loads.

Just saying............

Before you go looking for solar panels determine what your expected daily amp hour load is, then you can make a better decision on panel and battery requirements.

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Old 07-17-2015, 05:48 AM   #7
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I recently bought two 30 watt Renogy panels for $50 each or $1.67/watt. Like horse power and engines, solar panel wattage is a figure of merit so manufacturers tend to be optimistic. I assume 1 amp output for each 20 watts of panel in full sun as a conservative estimate. After figuring my use at no more than 10 amp-hrs a day I sized a panel to meet that need in the location I usually camp. I wanted 2-25 watt panels figuring 50 watts total. The 30 watt panels were cheaper and still within my size constraints. Hope this helps, Raz

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