Go Back   iRV2 Forums > CAMPING, TRAVEL and TRIP PLANNING > Boondocking
Click Here to Login
Join iRV2 Today

Mission Statement: Supporting thoughtful exchange of knowledge, values and experience among RV enthusiasts.
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 06-17-2014, 11:35 AM   #43
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 747
Menobb55- you might want to get an Olympian Wave (or similar make) catalytic propane heater as adjunct to youforced air heatesr. These use very little propane and no electricity. We find the OW 8 will keep our 34' 5th wheel warm down to freezing. We only use the forced air for a short time in the morning to get the temperature of cabin from 50' to mid-60s and then just use the OW (Olympian Wave) to keep us warm.

As noted in our post #40 above, we are solar autonomous. We are at an RV park at present but have not hooked up.

Reed and Elaine
__________________

__________________
Reed Cundiff is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 RV Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

iRV2.com RV Community - Are you about to start a new improvement on your RV or need some help with some maintenance? Do you need advice on what products to buy? Or maybe you can give others some advice? No matter where you fit in you'll find that iRV2 is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with other RV owners, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create an RV blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 06-18-2014, 12:46 PM   #44
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Somewhere I guess?
Posts: 453
For just myself in my little Class B, I put two 100W solar panels and ran a single cheap marine battery. I had a second but it went bad before I hit the road as it was about 5 years old.

My biggest complaint is only having the one battery to be honest. 200W is PLENTY in my van for normal usage. But then again it doesn't use a blower on the furnace and have all LED bulbs except the bathroom. (I think the manufacturer wired the bathroom light fixture backwards, LED won't work but incandescent will).

The only other things I *need* besides lights and phone and/or tablet charging are the fresh water pump and recirculating toilet flush. If it's warm, a low power draw 12V fan is left on blowing on me. Aside from that... that's all I need.

Trying to run an inverter eats up the battery pretty quickly after dark but if I keep to 12V only stuff like a cell phone or tablet charger it's okay. During the day I can run a very small inverter to charge non-12V things and still have ample power a night.

I ran it down around 50% a few times with a 100W inverter and a laptop simply because I kept pushing it and wanting to be on a laptop instead of my tablet.

Plan V - A van dwelling blog: Solar panels - Part 1
http://cubey7800.blogspot.com/2013/0...ls-part-2.html
__________________

__________________
Cubey is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-2014, 08:13 PM   #45
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 101
smaller TT solar

First Off Bob is the man, his ramblings as some have called them track almost perfectly with my own experiences in regards to designing and building the system I own and while it might take multiple reads to gleen all of the info from them, it is their for the asking.

I currenetly have two 240 watt cell panels wired in parallel with a tristar MPPT-45 as a charge controller. this feeds two 200 Ah 12 volt batteries which feed a Xantrex freedom 1800 charger inverter (not reccomended and soon to be replaced) as well as a samlex 300 watt PSW inerter.


If you have a smaller roof like me (the two panels cover 90% of the roof) then running the grid tie panels is a winner. I had to make a tilting rack system so that I can fully open my roof vent when needed (plus I can tilt them for winter months)

The clan (DW two daughters and myself) just returned from a two week expedition through Hokaido Japan (highly reccomended for any expeditioneers out there) and with no gen support we kept at 60 SOC or higher at all times powering two engel 12 volt refreidgerators/freezers, 800 watt microwave for defrost/reheating duties , lights, small tv with dvd for the kids, phone chargers, camera chargers, handy cams, game boys and etc.

I was also able to jump start a stranded Japanese family from the main battery bank after their professionally installed battery system on their van conversion left them with dead batteries (batteries were simply wired in parralel with no controller between house and coach batteries, yes I schooled them on the facts and gae them a diagram along with several web links on where they could get what they needed to fix the problem.

So in short Solar if installed properly (biggest issue I see) can be the knife that cuts the tether from campgrounds and generators but it must be installed properly.

kenn

I tried to upload a wireing diagram of our system in excell but the forum won't let me for some reason, anybody want it PM me and I will send it.
__________________
kenn_chan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-2014, 09:14 PM   #46
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Fulltimer
Posts: 186
As I have said before many times - there is nothing magical about designing a good solar/electrical system. The facts on what makes it perform well are well known....just seemingly not by many solar installers. Although things are improving a "little".

The size of the system will drive many of the choices. Many people do not need or want MPPT controllers when their system is small and on a tight budget. You just have to determine the needs and the boundaries "up front". And leave room in the design for expansion....because MOST people expand if they have the roof space.

Some people - like us - want to be able to use power whenever they want (within some limits). Thus I have a large system (3000 watt hybrid Magnum inverter, 1200 watts high voltage solar, MidNite Classic 150 controller, 1200 Ah AGM battery, Trimetric 203RV). That would be excessive for some. But not for us. Of course we have the space for all that in a 44' 5er....
__________________
Jack and Danielle Mayer
2015 New Horizons Majestic 44RLTSS/ Volvo 780
Jack Mayer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2014, 08:06 PM   #47
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Traveling/Volunteering Full Time
Posts: 30
There was a question that another poster asked that I have not seen the answer: How do you get the wires down from the roof?

I have seen various comments about "going down the refrig vent", but I'm not really clear how that is done? Actually putting the wires inside the vent pipe??? How do you exit to connect to the rest of the electrical system?

A related question, how do you secure the wires on the roof? More screws in the roof?

Also, what is the "gunk" that you use to seal all the holes when installing this stuff & where do you get it?

One additional thing, it seems that most people are using 12 volt panels and then either wiring them in series or parallel depending on their plan. Is there a reason more people don't use 24 or 36 volt panels?
__________________
yourpcgeek49 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2014, 10:17 PM   #48
Senior Member
 
Ford Super Duty Owner
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Buxton, North Dakota
Posts: 3,334
It is easy to enter the back of the refrigerator through the vent cap. Once you get to the bottom you can go through the plastic floor and then into the basement.

You can usually keep the wires on the roof fairly short. You can use clamps screwed to the roof. Seal with self leveling Dicor.

Higher voltage panels and MPPT controllers are actually getting a lot more popular. Some reasons for holding off were lack of decent charge controllers and frames not meant to travel down the road.
__________________
2003 Winnebago Adventurer 38G F53/ V10 605 watts of Solar
1999 Winnebago Brave 35C Handicap Equipped
F53/V10
1999 Jeep Cherokee & 1991 Jeep Wrangler Renegade
John Hilley is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 08:39 AM   #49
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 101
To answer post # 47 from yourpcgeek49 you can do the fridge vent, or you can get a 4"x4"x2" pvc electrical waterproof box with the gasketed screw on cover. Simply seal it to the roof with sealer and 4 screws, un screw the top and drill a hole straight through the roof run your wires where needed. since the top cover can be opened and closed when ever needed its also easy to make additions with etc. You can also use it as a location to combine multiple wires as well.
also you do not have to use screws to attach the wires to the roof, 3M makes stick on pads that when properly applied will not come off even in hurcain level winds. you can get them with reliefs that accept cable zip ties to run the wires where ever without drilling any screw holes.

just some thoughts

ken
__________________
kenn_chan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 08:52 AM   #50
Registered User
 
mel s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 8,777
Quote:
Originally Posted by yourpcgeek49 View Post
it seems that most people are using 12 volt panels and then either wiring them in series or parallel depending on their plan. Is there a reason more people don't use 24 or 36 volt panels?
yourpcgeek49
12V solar panels and 12V solar controllers are used on most RVs because most RVs have 12V batteries and 12V electrical systems.
Mel
'96 Safari
__________________
mel s is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 10:53 AM   #51
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2013
Posts: 53
Screw it to the roof' ??

NOT...

There are all kinds of glues available that compared to drilling holes makes more sense. If airliners are glued together, it must be a better path to follow.

No location on my solar system has been screwed to anything including the incoming wiring. pc
__________________
95' Foretravel U320C SE M4000, 01' RAM 3500 LWB SB 40' G-Neck W/Eaton 6 Speed, 99' Audi D2/A8,
84' S2 V6 74MM Turbo Buick Regal.
pocketchange is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 11:40 AM   #52
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 747
Absolutely agree with post #50. 12 V panels and 12 V battery banks are most commonly used on RV systems. Handy Bob pretty much advocates this concept. He is a proponent of simple to design and fabricate, things that a handyman/woman can do with everyday tools. These are systems that can be fairly fool proof and fail safe for the handyman.

Have been “lurking” about on the varied solar fora (varied threads on Open Roads, Solar Panel Forum, Northern Arizona Wind and Sun, and the Aussie Grey Nomads). The more sophisticated and complex systems are going to panels in series (higher voltage and thus lesser loss from panels) and 24 to 48 V battery banks. These take considerable more design and fabrication skills than 12 V and are probably not for the average do-it-yourselfer. (My electronics skills end with placing batteries in a flashlight – I was a physicist for 35 years at White Sands Missile Range). Ours is a complex system (see post #40) but it was designed and fabricated by son with around 30 years experience in alternative energy and a master electrician/electrical contractor. I did help/hinder in the fabrication as in “Dad, could you get the drill” or “hold this for a second.”

Our panels are held down with S-clamps and have been hit with 2" rainfalls with no leaks.

Our original system was 12 V and we were exceptionally happy with it.
Reed and Elaine
__________________
Reed Cundiff is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 11:46 AM   #53
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Traveling/Volunteering Full Time
Posts: 30
Someone suggested using 3M VHB tapes, but there are dozens of products in that line. Anyone have a specific product that they would recommend or have used?
__________________
yourpcgeek49 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 01:11 PM   #54
Senior Member


 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Posts: 3,274
Quote:
Originally Posted by yourpcgeek49 View Post
Someone suggested using 3M VHB tapes, but there are dozens of products in that line. Anyone have a specific product that they would recommend or have used?

Check this out.

Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByiRV2 - RV Forum1409767842.886578.jpg
Views:	154
Size:	625.5 KB
ID:	72805
__________________
pasdad1 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 04:39 PM   #55
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Traveling/Volunteering Full Time
Posts: 30
Anybody have suggestions for the EPDM Rubber roof on the Heartland Bighorn? The "Sticky Feet" brochure specifically says ""Sticky Feet" are not for use on RV's with rubber ... roofs!"
__________________
yourpcgeek49 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-03-2014, 04:59 PM   #56
Registered User
 
mel s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 8,777
Quote:
Originally Posted by yourpcgeek49 View Post
Anybody have suggestions for the EPDM Rubber roof on the Heartland Bighorn? The "Sticky Feet" brochure specifically says ""Sticky Feet" are not for use on RV's with rubber ... roofs!"
yourpcgeek49
IMO, there's a "common sense" solution to that "non-problem"... don't wear "Sticky Feet", (what ever they are?), on the rubber roof of your Heartland Bighorn.

Am I missing something?

Mel
__________________

__________________
mel s is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
power, solar



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Solar advice needed please RonInFlorida Going Green 23 04-15-2014 10:19 AM
Solar Power Question donie Going Green 23 02-05-2014 12:41 PM
Portable Solar chargers bubbajean Going Green 1 08-14-2013 07:19 AM
No power when plugging in RedWing Nut iRV2.com General Discussion 5 06-27-2013 02:37 PM

» Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:41 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.