I've been through the whole solar
lately and have the square eyes to prove it.
The approach I ended up with was to invest in good infrastructure - oversized tinned cable, two good mppt
controllers running two seperate banks of panels, good double pole breaker/switches for easy maintenance
, and good batteries.
The panels themselves are almost considered the disposable part of the equation. $1200 AUS for a 100 watt Solbian is not in our budget
. I went for chinese panels made with German cells at $170 for 125W. They look well made and meet or exceed stated output. These are glass fronted alu framed. The flexible panels I got were $335 for 135 watts and I got them from an RV Guy who was well recommended on the forums
In all my searches I couldn't find many first hand reports regarding long term durability of flexible panels, cheap
or otherwise; they haven't been round long enough perhaps.
It's my belief that metal backed flexible panels are more prone to delam issues due to different expansion rates.
There is so much choice today it drives you nuts. Once I had formulated an approach it got easier. Having decided to spend big on infrastructure and try cheap panels I looked for suppliers who didn't also sell lampshades and cuddly toys, and came recommended. Here in Aus the RV and off-road camping type forums
are good; they take the gear
outback and rattle the hell out of it, then talk to each other.
If I was in the USA I'd probably give those Renogy a go. You got a coupla recommendations here already.