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Old 13-02-2016, 20:03   #1
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who to contact for solar panel mounting

Mods, not sure if this belongs in electrical or boat forum, so move if necessary.

I have asked and gotten some great advice on components for solar on my cat. What I can't figure out is how to mount the panels. I do know I will mount these off the davits, using the bolts that go through the turning block on the davit and a strut to the hull or lifeline stanchion.

However, I am not sure who to contact to make a tray to hold the panels and do the stainless work.

I was thinking about a canvas/bimini/dodger company since they have to mount that, but then I think these guys mostly farm out that part out? A boatyard? Is there standard stuff made by the panel manufacturers? Etc.

These are 2 Sunworld 285 W panels, side by side.
Thanks.

I am in New England, USA.
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Old 13-02-2016, 20:23   #2
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Re: who to contact for solar panel mounting

Try not to use a tray. Attach the panels directly to the frame if possible.

The panels will dissipate heat better, remain cooler and be more efficient if there is air flow directly under them.
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Old 13-02-2016, 20:29   #3
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Re: who to contact for solar panel mounting

Stu, thanks. Should have said frame. Who makes the frame?
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Old 13-02-2016, 20:37   #4
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Re: who to contact for solar panel mounting

Can't help you with a frame maker in the US, but look for a stainless steel fabricator, not a canvas company.

Preferably one with appropriate experience, so the first thing I'd do is ask around local boatyards.
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Old 13-02-2016, 21:23   #5
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Re: who to contact for solar panel mounting

I saw some close up pics of a SS arch made for a catamaran, specifically designed to hold solar panels. What they did was had the fab shop weld vertical tabs on the top of the tubes just inside of the solar panel frames, then drilled through the frames and tabs and bolted it all together. They used 4 tabs per panel. Pretty easy for them to do as long as you give them accurate measurements of the panels.

In the chassis fabrication world, they have laser cut mass produced tabs made out of 4130 that cover just about every possible mounting situation. I would think that the same variety of tabs are available in SS and all they need to do is weld them on.
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Old 14-02-2016, 09:03   #6
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Re: who to contact for solar panel mounting

I had my canvas guy bend an arch out of 1" SS tubing for my 37 ft Fountaine Pajot. Then, I purchased a mounting bracket kit from Hamilton Ferris out of Cape Cod, Maine.
The owner, Ham Ferris was extremely helpful and has done tons of this stuff! Greatest brackets I could find and they allow you to remove the panels easily if required! We do this for storage every season when we leave the boat in Florida over the summer.
I can take some pictures of my arch if you want and send to you. Would need your email to do this probably. Not the greatest on the importing photo's and things, easier to forward. His contact info is: Ham Ferris

HAMILTON FERRIS CO - POWER PRODUCTS
Power for boat, home & RV since 1975
3 ANGELO DRIVE
BOURNE, CAPE COD, MA 02532 USA

Ph 508 743 9901 Fax 508 743 9961

EMAIL HAM@HAMILTONFERRIS.COM
WEB HAMILTONFERRIS.COM
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Old 14-02-2016, 09:36   #7
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Re: who to contact for solar panel mounting

following...
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Old 14-02-2016, 11:03   #8
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Re: who to contact for solar panel mounting

Here is a other idea I use a aluminium plat under the solar panel and I use a machinist to make my u bracket to attach on the David's sorry for the picture up side down
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