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Old 15-03-2018, 04:34   #1
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New Solar system,

Bought my new solar Panels for my boat today,
These are to go on top of the Transom Dinghy Davits where there will be no shade from the mast or boom,
I will be placing them on a single bar so I can tilt them during the day as the sun moves over,
My last set on there were only 80 Watts with two other panels of 100 Watts,
One on the roof and one on the handrails, Over the side on brackets,
The one on the side got bent after I hit the fuel dock with it, I forgot it was hanging out there,
New boat and my first time time trying to dock on my own, It still worked tho, Just bent rails,
I put all my previous panels and systems on my RV,

So its all start from scratch on this one,
The 360 Watt Panels I had previously was enough for all my needs, Coupled with the 913, Wind Genny and the 80 amps off the motor,

The new 12 volt panels are 250 Watts each, with inbuilt diodes and MC 4 connectors, Giving me a total of 500 Watts,
I can add to these later if I need too, with two panels on the roof, which will give me 1000 Watts of panels, Plus the Wind Genny and the 80 amps off the motor,

Kyocera Mono panels, 1500 x 760 mm, so I can fit them beside each other,
18.7 volts, vmp, Class A,
They were $324-00 A Pair, AUD Delivered, Including 2 off, MC4, Two into one connectors,
So I only have the one, twin core 4mm wire to run to the controller next to the batterys,
I can run this wire inside the boat from the transom, Nice and tidy, Unseen,
The rest of the system I bought previously,
MMPT 40 Am Solar Controller, Im not sure if 40 Amps is big enough,
5000 Watt Pure Sine Wave, 12 volt, -240 Volt Invertor, With 10,000 Watt surge,
Xantrax, Prolink, Battery Monitor,
MT5 Tracer,
Rutland, Marlec, Wind Genny, Charge Regulator,

The Batterys will be 280 Amphour AGMs, X 2,
Fridge and Cooker are gas,
I am changing the Atwood water heater from 110 Volt to 12 volt,
or 240 Volt, Depends on what I can get, Online,
Then every thing is 12 volt,

Cheers, Brian,
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Old 20-03-2018, 18:33   #2
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Re: New Solar system,

Not being a sparky, and my electrical knowledge is very limited,

Is there any thing else I need to add to this system, or delete,
I am doing away with the Electrical heating in the water heater as I dont require it,
It will give enough hot water off the motor when required,

Input is welcome,

Thanks, Brian,
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Old 20-03-2018, 18:57   #3
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Re: New Solar system,

Not sure if you stay at the marina, you are at anchor or you are cruising but unless you are at one fixed position tilting them will not work
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Old 20-03-2018, 20:15   #4
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Re: New Solar system,

The 40 amp charge controller will barely be enough for the 500 watts of solar. If you expand beyond that you'll need more.

Depending on the prevailing wind, tilting the panels can be useful. You do need to monitor the angle of the sun so you don't leave them tilted one way too long.
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Old 20-03-2018, 20:46   #5
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Re: New Solar system,

Quote:
Originally Posted by motion30 View Post
Not sure if you stay at the marina, you are at anchor or you are cruising but unless you are at one fixed position tilting them will not work
On a swing mooring, The boat is usually pointing in one direction, so the panels get moved twice a day, Pointing at the sun, If the direction changes, I tilt the panels to suit,

At Anchor its usually the same, Offshore, Protected bays, The boat is usually pointing the same way from anchoring, Tilt twice a day,

Cruising, I am usually going the same way all day, The panels are usually flat,
Waste of time moving them,

Marina's are to get fuel only, I dont stay in them,
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Old 20-03-2018, 20:53   #6
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Re: New Solar system,

Quote:
Originally Posted by 44'cruisingcat View Post
The 40 amp charge controller will barely be enough for the 500 watts of solar. If you expand beyond that you'll need more.

Depending on the prevailing wind, tilting the panels can be useful. You do need to monitor the angle of the sun so you don't leave them tilted one way too long.
Ive been told that, the 40 amps is a bit on the small side, I might have to get another one and run two of them,

I only tilt them when I an anchored, I sit under them on a hammock, So its a matter of standing up and tilting them when I go for a coffee or some thing,

At sea, I leave them flat, Exposed upwards, The boat is bouncing all over the place, Going over waves, So its a waste of time, Let it do its own thing,
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Old 20-03-2018, 23:20   #7
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Re: New Solar system,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr B View Post
Not being a sparky, and my electrical knowledge is very limited,

Is there any thing else I need to add to this system, or delete,
I am doing away with the Electrical heating in the water heater as I dont require it,
It will give enough hot water off the motor when required,

Input is welcome,

Thanks, Brian,
you will need a breaker switch to disconnect the panels before the charge controller,you also need a fuse near the batteries from the charge controller

the mt 50 remote monitor for the charge controler only comes with a 5m data cable which is a bit short but can be replaced with a cat 5 ethernet cable with the same RJ45 ends on it ,available in many different lenths off ebay

the inverter also will need an aprox 300A fuse and 50mm2cables and an earth wire

tinned wire will give best corrosion resistance for instalation.

inverter AC power should be run through a fuse box with a RCD (residual current device) for safety and grounded to an earth on the boat

if connecting to existing A/C system a change over switch is advised to disconnect shore power and connect the inverter as connecting a/c from shore power whilst the inverter is still connected will destroy the inverter
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Old 21-03-2018, 01:39   #8
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Re: New Solar system,

Quote:
Originally Posted by atoll View Post
you will need a breaker switch to disconnect the panels before the charge controller,you also need a fuse near the batteries from the charge controller

Double pole switch should sort that out, Just before the controller, 50 amp fuse is organised,

the mt 50 remote monitor for the charge controler only comes with a 5m data cable which is a bit short but can be replaced with a cat 5 ethernet cable with the same RJ45 ends on it ,available in many different lenths off ebay

I was putting them both in the door of the battery bank so should be ample length,

the inverter also will need an aprox 300A fuse and 50mm2cables and an earth wire

Where does the earth wire run too, From the case of the invertor to where, Its a fibre glass boat,

tinned wire will give best corrosion resistance for instalation.

inverter AC power should be run through a fuse box with a RCD (residual current device) for safety and grounded to an earth on the boat

I was going to put an RCD in any way, Still the earth problem, Does that go back to the case of the invertor

if connecting to existing A/C system a change over switch is advised to disconnect shore power and connect the inverter as connecting a/c from shore power whilst the inverter is still connected will destroy the inverter
Its a stand alone system, Shore power outlet will be removed, Plus the wiring as well,

Electric Hand tools and microwave will be the only things that are used on 240 volts,
Every thing else is 12 volt,


Thank you, Brian,
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Old 21-03-2018, 05:36   #9
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Re: New Solar system,

i have connected the earth for all the sockets and the inverter to an underwater skin fitting,as i have no anode currently.
but generally unless the boat is steel or aluminium all the negative and earths are bonded to an anode.

fitting an isolation transformer or galvanic isolator if you are going to use shore power is also advised to stop stray currents in marinas.

here is a link that discusses all the aspects of grounding a yacht FYI

https://www.westmarine.com/WestAdvis...unding-Systems

diagram
http://www.safeshoremarine.com/diagr...h%20wiring.pdf
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Old 21-03-2018, 06:46   #10
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Re: New Solar system,

All my 240 volt power tools are double insulated, They dont even have an earth lead coming out of them, Two pins only, Positive and Negative,
The micro wave will be the only thing with an earth lead in the cable,

All the 12 volt system is all connected with earth leads, Bus bar at the Batterys,
All battery leads from the motor to the batterys, and to the invertor are 400 amp copper welding leads,
I have hundreds of metres of it left over from my welders, Im retired and I wont ever use them again, Its twice the size that were on it before,
I also dont like hot cables when cranking a motor over,

Shore power will be totally removed, Including the wiring for it, I just dont need it,

Here, I can park on the beach, Walk across the road and get all my shopping from a supermarket, Diesel from a servo, Same for gas supplys, Servo's sell them,
A bottle of gas in each hand is nothing to carry, We have exchange cylinders, Take in your empty ones and walk out with full ones,


The only things I have in the water is the drive leg and the anchor chain, ,
The drive leg has anodes on it, Its also hydraulicaly lifted out of the water when I am sailing,
The anchor chain is not connected to any thing metal, The cleats are all bolted to plastic,
I dont have an anchor winch,

Between Kunnanura and Broome, The Kimberlys, There is approx 1000 miles of pristine coastline with no towns and very few people, And no roads,
So everything I need, has to be on the boat, and reliable, Food I can get on the way,
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Old 21-03-2018, 07:04   #11
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Re: New Solar system,

having an earth wire just gives the casing of the microwave,toaster or inverter etc a path of least resistance to ground itself, if there is an electrical short , static build up or lightning strike,rather than using the person who touches it as the ground,which can potentially be fatal.

even though the boat is plastic there is enough humidity in the air and on surfaces to conduct electricity if there is an absence of another path to ground in the case of high currents.
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Old 29-03-2018, 11:05   #12
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Re: New Solar system,

My new panels have arrived,
250 Watts by 2 = 500 watts,
Here they are with no sun on them,
They have the diodes built in,
$254-00 AUD, Delivered, with two X 2 into 1 MC4 connectors.

Comments welcome,
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Old 29-03-2018, 11:18   #13
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Re: New Solar system,

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr B View Post
My new panels have arrived,
250 Watts by 2 = 500 watts,
Here they are with no sun on them,
They have the diodes built in,
$254-00 AUD, Delivered, with two X 2 into 1 MC4 connectors.

Comments welcome,
Now comes the hard part: installing them on the boat.
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Old 29-03-2018, 11:36   #14
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Re: New Solar system,

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTom View Post
Now comes the hard part: installing them on the boat.
Thats the easy part,
I have a central bar bolted on the panels, with clamps that go on the the rod on the davits,
Its just a hand screw that clips on to the bar, X 2
Its a very simple method of connection, Sorry, I dont have a piccy of it, But the previous owner had them on it for 10 years while living on the hook,
So they do work very well,
I did 3000 Nmiles with them like it, They never moved unless I pushed on them to alter the angle towards the sun,
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Old 01-04-2018, 14:14   #15
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Re: New Solar system,

True, having davits definitely helps
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