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Old 04-06-2010, 12:45   #1
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PowerFilm Rollable Solar Battery Chargers

PowerFilm Rollable Solar Battery Chargers
Hi all,
I wanted to know if anyone has tried these PowerFilm Rollable Solar Battery Chargers. (http://www.powerfilmsolar.com/rollab...argers/r21.php) I am looking to keep my batteries up while offshore and think this would do. I use very little power, chartplotter, VHF in the day and on top of that mast lights at night, so I would think this would keep up. Here are the specs,
Operating Voltage: 15.4
Operating Current: 1.35 Amps
Dimensions (Un-rolled): 14.5" x 60.75"
The R21 Rollable Solar Charger produces 21 Watts of power at an operating voltage of 15.4 volts

It comes with 15 feet of cable and O ring battery connectors, so it seems to not require a regulator. If thats the case, would I have to disconnect it when connected to shore power and the hard wired charger is doing its thing?
I have 2 batteries in the house bank, so I am assuming if I connect it to one, it will charge the other one as well?
All help is appreciated.
Thanks
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Old 04-06-2010, 13:20   #2
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Something is better than nothing but assuming you get 100% of what they advertising for 8 hours of usable sunlight, that is 168 amp hours into the bank.

A 10 watt anchor light for 8 hours of darkness consumes over 1/2 of that. Do you mean you have no other draws on the bank. No auto helm, to depth sounder, no fridge, etc? They add up pretty fast.

Because it has no regulator does not mean it doesn't need one. If you leave it hooked up all the time while you are away from the boat, it will try to float the batteries at 15.4 volts, not really good.

Yes, when plugged in and using your battery charger, you would want it unhooked.

Still, if you have no other means of passive charging capability, something is better than nothing.

George
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Old 04-06-2010, 14:58   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by S/VSkylark View Post
PowerFilm Rollable Solar Battery Chargers
Hi all,
I wanted to know if anyone has tried these PowerFilm Rollable Solar Battery Chargers. (http://www.powerfilmsolar.com/rollab...argers/r21.php) I am looking to keep my batteries up while offshore and think this would do. I use very little power, chartplotter, VHF in the day and on top of that mast lights at night, so I would think this would keep up. Here are the specs,
Operating Voltage: 15.4
Operating Current: 1.35 Amps
Dimensions (Un-rolled): 14.5" x 60.75"
The R21 Rollable Solar Charger produces 21 Watts of power at an operating voltage of 15.4 volts

It comes with 15 feet of cable and O ring battery connectors, so it seems to not require a regulator. If thats the case, would I have to disconnect it when connected to shore power and the hard wired charger is doing its thing?
I have 2 batteries in the house bank, so I am assuming if I connect it to one, it will charge the other one as well?
All help is appreciated.
Thanks
An energy budget would be a big help. Chart plotters, for example can have very different power requirements depending on the model.
Unfortunately I think your expectations are optimistic 21watts of solar will only just replace 10 to 12 hours of the average use of a fixed VHF.
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Old 04-06-2010, 21:30   #4
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Generally the "roll up" solar panels (Brunton and others sell them for the backpacking market too) are going to be way more expensive and way less powerful than plain hard solar panels. So unless you really NEED to roll them up for stowage?

Plain hard panels are at least twice the bang for the same buck.
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