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Thread: My portable 12v solar power project

  1. #1
    GWH
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    My portable 12v solar power project

    I have a little lightweight 5v solar power system (which is packable) to run LED lights and can charge phones and batteries for headlamp and GPS etc.

    But in situations where you want to be able to do more with it, 5v isn't enough. If camping by car, drive to huts etc then a bit more bulk and weight isn't a problem.

    So I thought I'd build up a larger capacity 12v solar system.

    Started getting most the main components together.

    Still a few more little components to get to tie it all together and make it work.

    2 x 30w panels that I'll hinge together and add a carry handle.

    2 x 22ah agm deep cycle batteries

    10 amp solar charge controller

    MTM plastic ammo box

    Sent from my SM-G900I using Tapatalk
    mikee, Pengy, LOC and 3 others like this.

  2. #2
    Member Mathias's Avatar
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    Nice, you will get approx 1.5amp/hr form each panel in bright sunlight, so the regulator will cope well with that size of battery. They look like polycrystalline panels? Monocrystalline area a bit more efficient in dull light (for reference).
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  3. #3
    GWH
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathias View Post
    Nice, you will get approx 1.5amp/hr form each panel in bright sunlight, so the regulator will cope well with that size of battery. They look like polycrystalline panels? Monocrystalline area a bit more efficient in dull light (for reference).
    Yeah I should get 3 -3.5 amps in good light.

    I believe it the other way around. Poly better in low light, mono better in bright.

    Sent from my SM-G900I using Tapatalk

  4. #4
    Member gadgetman's Avatar
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    Put some window/door sealing foam around the mating surfaces of the panels to stop the rattle when transporting when folded shut.

    Easier to wire up if the battery terminals are adjacent to each other too.
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    There are only three types of people in this world. Those that can count, and those that can't!

  5. #5
    Member Mathias's Avatar
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    Another tip, connect to batteries before you open up to the sunlight or else you can have a bit of a spark up as they are live once the light hits them. I used to sell a few panels once upon a time

    Here's some good tips. Pros and Cons of Monocrystalline v's Polycrystalline solar panels
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  6. #6
    Lovin Facebook for hunters kiwijames's Avatar
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    Where's the best place to buy panels? They appear to be the highest cost items with solar setup.
    The Universe is a cruel, uncaring void. The key to being happy isn't a search for meaning. It's to just keep yourself busy with unimportant nonsense, and eventually, you'll be dead. -Mr Peanutbutter

  7. #7
    GWH
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwijames View Post
    Where's the best place to buy panels? They appear to be the highest cost items with solar setup.
    AA solar has mono panels or supadealer on trademe has poly which is where I got mine. Quite well priced.

    Sent from my SM-G900I using Tapatalk
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  8. #8
    Member mikee's Avatar
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    I just got a 70W panel from AA Solar yesterday for the new clay bird tosser when have just purchased for our wee group of shooter, (now we have 10)
    Guess who got the jobbie of sorting out the battery / charging system

    Their prices are really sharp and the panels are good quality

  9. #9
    Member Mathias's Avatar
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    Yep AA Solar been about for ages, know their stuff. Always at the caravan shows etc.

    Sent from my GT-I9192 using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Member Pengy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikee View Post
    I just got a 70W panel from AA Solar yesterday for the new clay bird tosser when have just purchased for our wee group of shooter, (now we have 10)
    Guess who got the jobbie of sorting out the battery / charging system

    Their prices are really sharp and the panels are good quality
    Keep in mind what my landlord does to keep his head above water
    Forgotmaboltagain+1

  11. #11
    Member mikee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pengy View Post
    Keep in mind what my landlord does to keep his head above water
    Yes understood but I also get similar "discounts" on lots of electrical, electronic and other stuff too

  12. #12
    GWH
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathias View Post
    Nice, you will get approx 1.5amp/hr form each panel in bright sunlight, so the regulator will cope well with that size of battery. They look like polycrystalline panels? Monocrystalline area a bit more efficient in dull light (for reference).
    Re the dull light performance of the poly panels, heres a exert from Aussie Batteries & Solar|Australian Direct 12 Volt Shop for Camping, Caravan and Batteries Direct

    Myth: Monocrystalline solar cells are better than polycrystalline cells Monocrystalline solar cells have been superior for many years due to their higher peak efficiency and their availability. However, stating monocrystalline solar cells are better than polycrystalline is incorrect. Let’s briefly compare both types of cells. According to some, monocrystalline solar cells have a more aesthetic appearance due to their black cells. Typically, one square meter will generate approximately 190W which makes the panels slightly smaller than polycrystalline panels. Monocrystalline cells operate well (and often better than polycrystalline cells) under perfect weather conditions: during clear, sunny days. Polycrystalline solar cells have a blue colour with some patches that are lighter than others (due to multiple crystals) although their look has become gradually darker. They also reveal a better performance on days with less ideal sunlight and higher temperatures. Thanks to their multiple crystals, polycrystalline cells can produce more electricity as sunlight is reflected within the crystals. One square meter of polycrystalline cells generates about 180W which results in slightly bigger solar panels to allow an equal amount of wattage compared to the monocrystalline cells. - See more at: Common Solar And Battery Myths Busted
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  13. #13
    GWH
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    I got it all finished up last night. It's been a cool little project.

    Works bloody well, panels are charging at 3.5 amps in full sun and 1 amp+ when cloudy.

    Could stay in bush for yonks and keep everything well charged and have good lights in hut or camp.

    Sent from my SM-G900I using Tapatalk

  14. #14
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    So when does it get its first real use? Bit late for the roar but can see it being handy in the maimai in he next month
    GWH likes this.

  15. #15
    Ejected
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    Do you mind sharing how much you invested in this setup please.
    Neat little system you've built
    GWH likes this.

 

 

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