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Old 09-02-2014, 20:13   #76
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

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Just did the same

Did you get the ebay panels?
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Old 10-02-2014, 06:34   #77
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

Yes, I got the ones from DiscountSolar. I plan to have them on the bimini fabric as others have done.
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Old 10-02-2014, 21:27   #78
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

from Solbian flexible solar panels - Multihulls4us Forums :

2nd December 2013, 09:46 AM
Milena_Solbian
Solbian flexible solar panels
Hello everybody,
the administrator of this forum gave me permission to post on the forum warning that I'm here as a supplier, I indeed work for Solbian Energie Alternative, a young Italian company that produces flexible solar panels for boats. Solbian offers innovative products and manufactures flexible pv panels designed for the marine industry and other fields. The solar cell efficiency is very high, especially in panels of the SP series, which are made using SunPower™ monocrystalline cells, with an efficiency greater than 22.5%. Panels of the new SX series use “full square” monocrystalline silicon cells with efficiency larger than 19% and the CP series panels are made using monocrystalline silicon cells, with an efficiency greater than 18%. Solbian flexible photovoltaic panels are lightweight, extremely powerful and walkable, they are highly resistant to weathering and degrading agents such as thermal shock, fog, salt water and solar radiations.
There are four fixing methods to choose from, Structural double-sided adhesive, Stainless steel eyelets, tenax and zip.
You can have a look at some applications in the gallery section of our website.
Please feel free to ask for any further information.

-----------------------------------------

But even if they are made in Italy, there should be a tag indicating country of manufacture. Of course if the panels were made overseas and someone in the US just soldered on the connecting leads, that might make them "made in USA" ?
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Old 11-02-2014, 05:05   #79
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

That's a lot of links. Lots of nice keywords too!
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Old 11-02-2014, 05:58   #80
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

SunPower™ monocrystalline cells are made in the USA, maybe Solbian has some sort of utility patent and assembles through Sunpower's facilities? Just a thought.
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Old 11-02-2014, 09:47   #81
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

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Originally Posted by vtsailguy View Post
That's a lot of links. Lots of nice keywords too!
So true....;-)
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Old 11-02-2014, 10:08   #82
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

Tenax snaps are working great for me. I installed all 4 panels on my bimini in a just few minutes using only a soldering iron. I'd also suggest adding to the backside of the panel a layer of 1/16 neoprene with adhesive on 1 side. You'll find it cheap on ebay seller adrian22305. Got tenax snaps from www.eagleday.com
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Old 11-02-2014, 10:20   #83
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

Some FYI...for grommets or Tenax snaps we have been recommending to sew a canvas trim on the panels and then to put the snaps/grommets in the canvas. Perhaps a bit too careful however reduces the chances of cell cracking near the snaps/grommets.

However this doesn't come up very often as 90% of the panels are now installed with Velcro/flaps.

That is...aside from the new Gunboat cats which are going with the peel/stick adhesive backing for panels on the coachroof edges...not in trafficked areas.

If they were going to be walked on much then Aurinco or Solara should be considered.
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Old 11-02-2014, 13:47   #84
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

Do you have a close up of the specifics of the velcro flap on the bimini.....
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Old 11-02-2014, 13:57   #85
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

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Do you have a close up of the specifics of the velcro flap on the bimini.....
Maine Sail's excellent overview of installing Solbian panels has a couple of good pictures of the velcro component:
Installing A Solbian Solar Panel Photo Gallery by Compass Marine at pbase.com
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Old 11-02-2014, 14:03   #86
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

Also worth checking this info sheet on Velcro/Solbian:
http://www.bruceschwab.com/uploads/s...guidelines.pdf
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Old 11-02-2014, 16:11   #87
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

Thanks!
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Old 11-02-2014, 17:20   #88
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

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SunPower™ monocrystalline cells are made in the USA, maybe Solbian has some sort of utility patent and assembles through Sunpower's facilities? Just a thought.
Sunpower has three fabs (one currently shut down) in the Philippines that manufacture the bulk of their cells and panels. They have a very small fab in Silicon Valley that allows them to sell Made in USA products, but nearly 100% of that production goes to Buy American government projects, very few (if any) US made cells are available on the open market.
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Old 11-02-2014, 17:36   #89
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

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Sunpower has three fabs (one currently shut down) in the Philippines that manufacture the bulk of their cells and panels. They have a very small fab in Silicon Valley that allows them to sell Made in USA products, but nearly 100% of that production goes to Buy American government projects, very few (if any) US made cells are available on the open market.
Makes me sad to hear that... sometimes it feels like true USA manufacturing is dead
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Old 11-02-2014, 17:47   #90
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Re: Flexible Solar Panel mounted directly on Sunbrella

Sunpower is currently building its 4th Philippines fab, to be online in 2015.

To the best of my knowledge SolarWorld has the last remaining US full-size silicon fab for solar, and they shut down that facility (in Hillsboro, Oregon) last fall for upgrades. Given their money troubles only time will tell if it re-opens.

There are a bunch of smaller start-up fabs (some funded by major players) that claim to have the better mousetrap and plans for expansion to > 100MW/year of production, time will tell.
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