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Old 16-09-2016, 10:43   #1
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Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

I found a mounting solution made by Gemini Hinge to mount 5 Solara 140w solar panels above my bimini but they are only available in 1" size.

The issue I have is that my bimini was made from 1-1/4" tubing due to the width of my beam. The custom builder said 1" was too thin, especially if I am planning to mount solar panels directly to it.

Is anyone aware of any solar panel mount for 1-1/4" tubing?
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Old 16-09-2016, 11:07   #2
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Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

These mounts may work for you.

Gemini Split Side Mount

.
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Old 16-09-2016, 14:32   #3
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cotemar View Post
These mounts may work for you.

Gemini Split Side Mount

.
Whoa. I did not see these on their website. This is even better!!!

Thank-you so much!
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Old 16-09-2016, 15:44   #4
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

I just realized I can't use these.

I have a connector that connects the bimini to my dodger.
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Old 16-09-2016, 18:11   #5
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

I am thinking I could use a filler/spacer to fill the gap.

Just not sure where to start...
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Old 17-09-2016, 09:26   #6
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Google the "Hamilton Ferris" website and look at their solar panel rail mounts.

I have these units and they will work on either 1" or 1 1/4" tubing. They easily come on and off for me every spring and fall when we pack up the boat and remove the solar panels.

"Ham" , the owner is great to deal with and will do custom stuff also.

These unit's are a real nice plastic type of product that still look brand new after 2 years. The SS mounts are probably Chinese products that will show rust in short order. They keep all their good SS at home for their military products.









'
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Old 17-09-2016, 14:11   #7
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

You can make just about anything you want with a vise, hacksaw, heat gun and drills out of PVC pipe. Just get a pipe that has the thickness you think is needed, plan out the shape you want to end up with, cut out a length of pipe that when sliced and opened up will give you flat piece the size you need and start heating, bending, shaping, etc. until you get what you want or need. I make tons of custom brackets and other things this way. PVC is extremely tough. You almost can't break it no matter how hard you try, it will flex and bend, and probably eventually rip, but certainly not unexpectedly break without warning.

Often for something like a bracket for something round like a pipe, you can go to the next size larger diameter and make a circle with 2 extensions with a bolt through the extension to clamp and hold what you want. I also make a lot of stuff out of stainless sheet cut into strips with tin snips to do this. Just figure the length of strap you need and drill a couple holes. I often fold over the edges to get rid of any sharpness before I bent it into the circle to fit the pipe. Fold it with a vise to 90 degrees and then finish with a lot of easy hammer blows on something like an anvil.
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Old 17-09-2016, 14:41   #8
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wannacat View Post
Google the "Hamilton Ferris" website and look at their solar panel rail mounts.

I have these units and they will work on either 1" or 1 1/4" tubing. They easily come on and off for me every spring and fall when we pack up the boat and remove the solar panels.

"Ham" , the owner is great to deal with and will do custom stuff also.

These unit's are a real nice plastic type of product that still look brand new after 2 years. The SS mounts are probably Chinese products that will show rust in short order. They keep all their good SS at home for their military products.
That is great information on how to mount the panels to the rails but I need the hardware to mount the rails to my bimini.

Example:


Quote:
Originally Posted by jheldatksuedu View Post
You can make just about anything you want with a vise, hacksaw, heat gun and drills out of PVC pipe. Just get a pipe that has the thickness you think is needed, plan out the shape you want to end up with, cut out a length of pipe that when sliced and opened up will give you flat piece the size you need and start heating, bending, shaping, etc. until you get what you want or need. I make tons of custom brackets and other things this way. PVC is extremely tough. You almost can't break it no matter how hard you try, it will flex and bend, and probably eventually rip, but certainly not unexpectedly break without warning.

Often for something like a bracket for something round like a pipe, you can go to the next size larger diameter and make a circle with 2 extensions with a bolt through the extension to clamp and hold what you want. I also make a lot of stuff out of stainless sheet cut into strips with tin snips to do this. Just figure the length of strap you need and drill a couple holes. I often fold over the edges to get rid of any sharpness before I bent it into the circle to fit the pipe. Fold it with a vise to 90 degrees and then finish with a lot of easy hammer blows on something like an anvil.
If I am unable to find a solution off the shelf, I might just attempt to DIY something like you suggested.

My first though was to use some JB Weld (metal epoxy putty) to fill the gap from 1" to 1-1/4" but I would rather find a proper solution.
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Old 17-09-2016, 15:07   #9
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Try here: Bimini Hardware
I have purchased from them before and found the quality good and fast shipping. I have no interest in the company other than a satisfied customer.
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Old 17-09-2016, 15:35   #10
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Use a strip of rubber to fill the gap and to isolate from any possible vibrations
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Old 17-09-2016, 16:47   #11
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kmacdonald View Post
Try here: Bimini Hardware
I have purchased from them before and found the quality good and fast shipping. I have no interest in the company other than a satisfied customer.
Unfortunately, none of these fittings work for me.

I guess I am not being clear enough about my requirements....

If you look at the picture I posted, you can see the bimini/dodger and connector are covering all the posts with fabric. I need a mount that will connect to the posts under the fabric that I can use to build a "rack" to mount solar panels to.
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Old 17-09-2016, 16:48   #12
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

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Originally Posted by newhaul View Post
Use a strip of rubber to fill the gap and to isolate from any possible vibrations
That is another option, but also requires some DIY.

Like I said, if I can find a solution that fits 1-1/4" tubing, i would much prefer it.
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Old 17-09-2016, 17:20   #13
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Since your from Toronto, try giving Jamie Day a call at Sportech Sails in St. Catharines at 905 688-1833. Mon.-Fri.
I was looking at going through my Bimini Top and he had access to some nice fittings for that.
In the end, he built me an arch that I installed myself for my panels.
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Old 17-09-2016, 18:00   #14
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by epiic View Post
That is another option, but also requires some DIY.

Like I said, if I can find a solution that fits 1-1/4" tubing, i would much prefer it.
My mistake I misread thought you had decided on a clamping and just needed bushings .
Here is what I use on customers vessels for solar install that gives ability to remove easily.
Rail Clamps - Universal - Rail Tubing & Fittings - Deck & Hull Hardware - Downwind Marine
You can use them to mount to your grab bars on the outside of your bimmini.
You may have to bolt a small section of sq tube to the mount to raise the panel sufficiently to clear the top of your bimmini.
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Old 17-09-2016, 18:36   #15
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Re: Solar panel mounting hardware for 1-1/4" tubing?

It might be easier to build a nice SS tube frame from the deck up and over your bimini. Looks like your boom comes right up to your bimini. I wouldn't want panels under it.You have lots of room over your bimini. Your frame may be built strong enough (2"SS) to hang your dingy over that back of the boat.Then killing two birds with one stone. I don't see a way of mounting a frame onto your bimini frame. That tube frame looks kinda flimsy for Solar panels and Bimini together. Keeping them separate gives you the option of running without the bimini up when you feel like it instead of having a permanent bimini all the time.If i had to choose between Solar and Bimini, I would choose having solar panels . You got a lot of deciding ahead of you. I say , take it slow and don't be in a rush and the move you make will be a good one . Happy sailing.
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