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Old 30-03-2011, 13:36   #106
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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Originally Posted by Feral Cement View Post
Well, of course - if they were well-matched, I'd have a "solution", and we know how awkward THAT can be.

Sheesh.... Plan C?

John
Yeah sorry
but better to find out now rather than later.
.
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Old 30-03-2011, 13:50   #107
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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Wow, good catch Noelex, that is a picky unit! Might have to revise my thoughts on bluesky. Perhaps we can go back to looking at the morningstar 15a controller? I think the conditions where John could actually get more than 15a into the batteries would be pretty rare. It may cost him 2-3 ah each day if he is in ideal conditions, but if the alternative is going down to a 170w array to fit the space, he will still be ahead.
If I'm understanding ths issue, a 33V panel will cook a CC that only likes 28V max, right?

Tha alternative is either spending beaucoup bucks on a tougher CC or dropping down to (?) 120W to get a short panel that fits the stern. Or getting a little less at peak output from the right-sized but high-voltage panel by using this slightly under-sized but tough-enough CC?

Centrix-intl.com - Morningstar SS-MPPT-15L Wholesale Price, Ships Same Day!

As we used to say to the combat instructors, "Hit me again, harder, lower".

John
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Old 30-03-2011, 13:54   #108
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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Originally Posted by jaredko View Post
. Perhaps we can go back to looking at the morningstar 15a controller? I think the conditions where John could actually get more than 15a into the batteries would be pretty rare. It may cost him 2-3 ah each day if he is in ideal conditions, but if the alternative is going down to a 170w array to fit the space, he will still be ahead.
Yes life is full of compromises and I agree with what you said about the Morningstar regulator. It is the best solid solution yet. I still think, however, there must be a 12v panel, or panels out there that would fit the space unfortunately the research would use up my months internet allowance (its great to have internet on the boat, but the speed and download limits are still low)
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Old 30-03-2011, 14:14   #109
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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Originally Posted by Feral Cement View Post
If I'm understanding ths issue, a 33V panel will cook a CC that only likes 28V max, right?

Tha alternative is either spending beaucoup bucks on a tougher CC or dropping down to (?) 120W to get a short panel that fits the stern. Or getting a little less at peak output from the right-sized but high-voltage panel by using this slightly under-sized but tough-enough CC?

Centrix-intl.com - Morningstar SS-MPPT-15L Wholesale Price, Ships Same Day!

As we used to say to the combat instructors, "Hit me again, harder, lower".

John
Yep good summary of the state of play.
The only slight correction is the recomended maximum for the Bluesky controller was 28v the absolute maximum voltage of the was 35V . IMHO this makes the Bluesky unsuitable for a panel voltage of 33.4V.
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Old 30-03-2011, 14:18   #110
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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Yes life is full of compromises

unfortunately the research would use up my months internet allowance
You, sir, have suffered enough. Rest assured I will find some off-brand, under-priced and equally under-performing charge controller, made in Freedonia by imprisoned children, and compel you to burn more precious web minutes telling my why it's a bad idea.

In other words, thanks!

John
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Old 30-03-2011, 14:50   #111
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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You, sir, have suffered enough. Rest assured I will find some off-brand, under-priced and equally under-performing charge controller, made in Freedonia by imprisoned children, and compel you to burn more precious web minutes telling my why it's a bad idea.

In other words, thanks!

John
I have had plenty of great information, from this forum that has helped me.
I hope you can come up with a good solution so I can be positive for a change in this thread.
The Freedonia imprisoned children make great charge controllers, but if your boat swings to the west the output drops.
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Old 30-03-2011, 15:50   #112
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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The Freedonia imprisoned children make great charge controllers, but if your boat swings to the west the output drops.
That's because most of them are left-handed.

John
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Old 30-03-2011, 16:25   #113
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Re: Solar Enough ?

Have used a BZ500 controller for 8 years, troublefree. They are very basic, and are adjustable voltage output by potentiometer and dip stick settings internally. That said, I have also used 60amp pwm, and mppt Zantrec and mppt Outback units, and am partial to the information available from the Outback unit.
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Old 30-03-2011, 17:08   #114
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Mppt versus pwm. What a joke article that was. Mppt is useful if you intend to have high power cells that are required to deliver max power to bulk charge batteries. If on the other hand you solar cells are merely topping up the bank and hence typically operating at less then 80 of max output , mppt does nothing for you.

Pwm is not recommended as a method to charge lead acid.

Dave
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Old 30-03-2011, 21:46   #115
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Re: Solar Enough ?

For those asking about inexpensive LEDs, i've been using a mix of sensibulbs (new model)and Array G4 warm white LED for over a year.

Array Lighting | Array LED G4

While the Sensibulb is slightly brighter, the Array color, beam width, and general light "quality" is as good or better to my eye. No failures to date and run on regular boat power which has an absorption charge voltage of 14.5v. No radio interference noted. They will fit in fixtures that are two shallow for the sensibulb. I even managed to build a double bulb with a little careful soldering.

And I found the Arrays for $8.95 each at quantity 10.

Carl
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Old 30-03-2011, 22:03   #116
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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And I found the Arrays for $8.95 each at quantity 10.
Where? How much are the base adapters to plug into a standard bayonet base fixture?

What about gauge bulbs? And can you recommend a festoon bulb that meets USCG specs for the stern light?

Thanks,

John
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Old 31-03-2011, 02:29   #117
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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Pwm is not recommended as a method to charge lead acid.

Dave
Virtually all solar regulators ,MPPT or not (the exception is small very cheap models which are unlikely to be fitted to a boat) use PWM.
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Old 31-03-2011, 02:36   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noelex 77

Virtually all solar regulators ,MPPT or not (the exception is small very cheap models which are unlikely to be fitted to a boat) use PWM.
I know but it's still not a recommended way to charge lead acids.
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Old 31-03-2011, 02:38   #119
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Re: Solar Enough ?

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What about gauge bulbs? And can you recommend a festoon bulb that meets USCG specs for the stern light?

Thanks,

John
Bebi bulbs are excellent very bright with very low power draw. They meet the USCG specs, but have not been tested and certified in a light fitting to do so.

Marine LED Running Light Bulb Replacement Assembly

They need a small amount of modification to fit, but the result is very secure and reliable.
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Old 31-03-2011, 02:43   #120
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Quote:
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Virtually all solar regulators ,MPPT or not (the exception is small very cheap models which are unlikely to be fitted to a boat) use PWM.
Btw. Lots of PWM regulators are merely switched mode PSUs. The same as every battery charger is a PWM unit. But that output is smoothed to DC. I was referring to PWM charging techniques. This is where the pulse waveform is applied to batteries

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