Saturday, August 05, 2017

House battery

Day 87

Over Nite At Car Care

11:03am:
The Scampy Team has not final-tweaked our solar power system. As a result, Scampy's house battery has not received a full charge for several days. All-day cloudy sky is half of it. Solar panels being too small, is the other half.

We asked Randy, owner of Car Care Specialists for the OK to plug into his 
120 volt AC power. He gave us the OK!


When Car Care closed up at 6pm yesterday, Mark the service manager left a few feet of extension cord going underneath one of their doors. We plugged in and remained plugged in from 6pm yesterday to 8am this morning. By morning, Scampy's house battery was testing really good.

The house battery is not in an excellent state-of-charge, however! The battery is definitely useable and should last quite a while. But only IF Mr. Renogy, our solar panel setup, is able to deliver enough daily electric power to bring the battery up to 100% state of charge.

If not......we will have to use shore power to do the job!

We Nite Camped on a quiet side street behind Car Care Specialists. Nobody disturbed any of the Scampy RV Team during the nite. 😀

07:21pm:
Solar Electric System
I've just completed my selection of the major components for our new solar electric system. When this system is up and running, we should have about 3x the amount of solar electric power that we received from Mr. Renogy. And most important! The new solar panel will be generating electric power whenever the Sun is shining!

The panel will be mounted on Tránsito's roof. Reader Ed clued us in to there being threaded nuts in the roof for securing the solar panel! [Thank you sooooo much, Reader Ed!] There are [4] of these nuts forming a 39" square.

The space on Tránsito's roof for a solar panel is: 40" wide x 70" long. The 265 watt panel is 39"wide x 65" long.

Also included in the components:
➜ Morningstar 15 amp MPPT, 12/24 volt Battery Charge Controller
➜ Morningstar Remote Meter




Nite Camp Location Map
Elevation: 84 feet
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17 comments:

  1. You made a comment in one of your last posts
    About possibly putting a solar panel on your truck
    If you stand on the back of your trailer or bumper hitch and look on the very top. right and left side of your truck are there 4 blind caps on either side
    Some of those trucks had Step ladder or pipe racks
    Which would make putting a rack on top for a solar panel making a perfect fit

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ed,

      I am beginning to believe that without your comments, I would miss the mark on some of my projects!! 😎

      How did you find out about those [4} blind caps??

      I am going over to Ace Hardware in order to buy a set of hex wrench keys.

      The caps are secured by a hex screw. I am anxious to learn what is underneath those caps!

      George

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      Delete
  2. Not only is Mister Ed very intelligent and thorough. He is also one cool dude. In my opinion

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're making me blush

      Mr. G Would you post a picture of the roof of your truck
      Some of the trucks have a channel rail that run from the front to the back
      That rail would be about 3/4 x 5/8 with a grooved channel down the middle
      If there is a hex head screw,, if you take it out all you find is a threaded blind nut if that be the case you've got half your problem solved
      If you remember some of the SUVs that have a ski rack on top where you could slide the rack forward or back depending on what you're putting on top that it probably be the similar to what you have on your transit

      Delete
  3. there are dozens of configurations so without seeing a photograph
    I'm kind of lost
    Here is a illustration to give you an idea

    https://www.carid.com/perrycraft/dynasport-roof-rack-system.html?relationshipId=891759084&childId=245093386&gclid=CjwKCAjw2ZXMBRB2EiwA2HVD-LlGlyzpa1CQu6LTiBk_ikPGgdkVKzD0JfsWkNaLBLMPlFVdGTawUxoCxisQAvD_BwE

    The product in the illustration is if you buy it from them you have to drill holes in the roof
    But if you already have attachment points on the roof already ,, somehow you need to find out which brand was the original equipment

    Only at authorize Ford dealer would be able to tell you if the attachment points factory installed , if so good news

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ed,

      Underneath the the caps, that you discovered for us, are threaded nuts.

      Perfect for securing a mount for the solar panel! 😎

      George

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      Delete
  4. Great find by Mr. Ed on the roof nuts!

    It should be simple to mount the brackets to the roof nuts, but sometimes Murphy's Law interferes. If for some reason you can't mount directly to the nuts, you can mount panels to a roof rack. Here's what I did years ago on my old trailer.

    http://popupbackpacker.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/IMG_01811.jpg

    George,

    Did you mean to type 25 AMP MPPT controller instead of 15 amp? You want at least the 25 amp model. A 265 watt panel will put out close to 20 amps when charging a 12 volt battery at 14+ volts.

    Sizing large panels gets tricky because they are often spec'd at 30 volts and 9 amps for 265 watts, but you can use the 12/24 volt MPPT controller... the amps will be higher at lower voltages.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nick,

      A 15 amp charge controller is about twice the amps put out by this 265 watt solar panel.

      8.56 amps x 30.96 volts = 256.5 watts which is my panel.

      I raised the battery charge controller amps by 25% for occasional solar conditions when energy delivered to the charge controller jumps up.

      Using 25 amps that you suggest yields the following;
      25 amps x 30.96 volts = 774 watts.

      Often sizing of battery charge controllers takes into account a future increase in solar panels. That will never happen with Scampy and Tránsito.

      Nick, thank you for looking out for my welfare! If I have made an error in my numbers, please comment back and show me where i went wrong.

      Thank you,
      George

      .

      Delete
    2. Nick G
      I think the big issue before you start playing with numbers
      George is going to have to do a lot of figuring on what type of bracket if any he can put up there.
      Then he,s going to have to know what size he's going to be able to use, like length and width . That size is also going to Determine his wattage
      My personal note,, I'm not a fan of 2 50 W solar panel's
      Because of the mounting logistics. but he already has that set up
      if he uses his two panels on top of the truck roof he'salready ahead of the game because he's not going to the park and setting it up and disassembling it, he won't be losing that Solar curve




      Delete
    3. George,

      You will be charging a 12 volt system with a 30.95 volt panel rated at around 9 amps. If you use a PWM controller you will only get the 9 amps. With a MPPT you will get over 15 amps.

      Here is a calculator. Enter 265 watts and 30.95 volts And hit the calculate button. Now change the volts to 12 or 14 and hit calculate and see what you get.

      http://www.rapidtables.com/calc/electric/Watt_to_Amp_Calculator.htm

      The 15 amp controller should work, but you will get full amperage with 25 amp MPPT.

      Ed is right that the first order of business is mounting the panel. But buy the best controller for your system.

      I have two 130 watt panels and the output is over 15 amps, but since the panels are 17 volts I don't need MPPT. We can't change Ohm's Law :-)

      Delete
    4. Ed,

      When you commented to me about Blind Caps on Tránsito's roof, you completely eliminated the need to drill holes in the roof.

      Under those caps, are threaded holes. An extruded aluminum angle purchased in almost all hardware stores, will do the trick to securely mount this solar panel.

      Ed! You the man! 😎

      George


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      Delete
    5. Nick,

      I have decided to follow your comment to use a 25 amp MPPT battery charge controller.

      Thank you,
      George


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      Delete
    6. George,

      It should be simple to mount the panel with hardware store brackets. You might want to order a set of z-brackets with your solar panel. Of course sometimes things aren't as simple once you start a project, as unanticipated obstacles arise, but I don't see any at this time. These nuts already in the roof are fabulous.

      This is getting ahead of the installation, but keep it in mind. You can now get a much larger battery. I would get two of the 6 volt batteries like you had in Ms. Tioga. Your challenge will be finding space to mount them and the need to not overload your tongue weight. A larger bank will get you through cloudy and rainy days. Here are a couple battery mounting solutions I did on my previous small trailers... I didn't use the factory mounting system.

      http://popupbackpacker.com/our-trailers/1992-starcraft-meteorite/dual-battery-and-lpg-upgrade/

      http://popupbackpacker.com/our-trailers/2006-fleetwood-niagara/dual-battery-upgrade/

      Good luck on the project moving forward and I am looking forward to the process.

      Here's an offer: I'm willing to help you do the installation at no charge of course. I have a full shop at home. I am a retired automotive master technician and have installed several RV solar systems. The only problem is I am in Palm Springs, which isn't far from Jojoba Hills and right now the temps are triple digits.

      Delete
  5. Mister Ed is clearly an RV Guru, he's everywhere and knows everything. Handy guy to have following you..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rogue,

      Mister ed is certainly that!

      George

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      Delete
  6. Rogue Less traveled

    Stop making me blush
    Rv guru,,, no way. ( See famous quote)
    He's everywhere,,, if I don't take my phone GPS with me I get lost taking the trash to the garbage can
    Knows everything,,, my two famous quotes,, only enough to keep me out of trouble,, and to cover my Axx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ed,

      You are enhanced by your modesty.

      George


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      Delete

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