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Old 24-08-2016, 12:56   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Hollywood FL
Boat: Catalina 470
Posts: 910
Planning for solar...

Due to recent lightning damage, and with the help of the insurance company, I am replacing my old Freedom model #30 inverter/charger with a new unit. This gives me the opportunity to plan ahead and install equipment that would give me an upgrade path in the future as I prepare the boat for extended cruising. I'm looking for advice on how equipment selection and other options that will simplify the addition of solar panels in the future. Any recommendations?


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Old 26-08-2016, 12:27   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: PSL Florida
Boat: Cape Dory 25
Posts: 101
Re: Planning for solar...

I too am curious of better brands for solar panels and a wind generator? Any recommended to stay away from? It will be going on a 41' ketch with hardtop for solar along with solar above the davit as needed.

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Old 26-08-2016, 18:09   #3
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Location: canada
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Re: Planning for solar...

your inverter / charger will have nothing to do with adding solar panels later.

no mater what you choose you'll be adding a separate solar controller later.

magnum and victron made good inverter / chargers.

I would avoid the newer xantrax stuff.
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Old 27-08-2016, 00:48   #4
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Tybee Island GA
Boat: Grampian 26
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Re: Planning for solar...

After some research I bought two mono 100w Renogy panels because they are well built and seem to be the panel of choice for a great many RV enthusiast. I chose monocrytaline because it has a reputation of working best even on overcast days without direct sunlight. However, it has since come to my attention that if you have multiple mono panels hooked up in series and a shadow falls across one of them, then it will cause the output to cease on all panels until the shadow passes. Just something to keep in mind.

A very good video (and about 30 minutes long) has this guy who has for years owned about every type of solar panel on the market. He shows and explains in detail the differences of types, and which kinds are best for particular applications.
By the way his top choice are the Renogy monocrystaline solar panels which he uses for powering his cabin.
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