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Old 11-27-2014, 07:29 AM   #121
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Originally Posted by padlin View Post
Here's a link to a mount I saved off for future use, I like the way it'll go either direction.

Dual Tilt RV Solar Panel Mounts - Tilting Solar Module Angle Mounts - RV Solar Connection, llc - Denver, Colorado
This looks like the same setup the Oliver manufacturer is using for their panels... if you care
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Old 11-27-2014, 09:49 AM   #122
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This looks like the same setup the Oliver manufacturer is using for their panels... if you care
I've been looking at those designs but would really like to be able to angle the panels in any direction, not just two and am building a prototype to accomplish that...
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Old 11-27-2014, 10:48 AM   #123
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A friend of mine built a beutiful tilting bracket for his panel, the onlt negative is it only tilts side to side. His logic originaly was that he could position his trailer when camping to make that work, but that can be a bit tricky with a 28 ft trailer not always that much of a option when camping. So to have a mount that will alow it to be angled any way needed would be a great idea .
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Old 11-27-2014, 11:22 AM   #124
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This morning at 7:30 AM I went out and looked at the 95 watt panel located in the center of the trailer between the AC and the Maxifan. I had previously raised it up 3" when I mounted it to eliminate shadows from the Maxifan. I observed the sun shining over the entire panel surface and checked the the solar controller. It was reading 0 amps. I then unbolted the panel from the mounting and tilted it up facing the sun and it read 4.0 amps, even with a the sun very low in the sky. I then unbolted the rear panel and faced them both generally toward the sun and the total went up to 8.5 amps, 112 watts. What a huge difference it made to tilt the panels toward the sun! With the requirements to recharge my batteries after running the new DC refrigerator each night, a couple of extra hours of efficient charging each day will be important. This small test pretty much validates my efforts to improve the designs for my panel mountings to allow them to tilt toward the sun track.
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Old 11-27-2014, 08:23 PM   #125
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I intend to place a panel or two on the ground remote from the trailer where they can be adjusted easily. I currently have a battery cart which I use for tent camping. The batteries are charged by cord and plug connected panels. The panels are on an angled frame that can be moved and adjusted to gather the most sunlight.
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Old 11-27-2014, 08:57 PM   #126
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I intend to place a panel or two on the ground remote from the trailer where they can be adjusted easily. I currently have a battery cart which I use for tent camping. The batteries are charged by cord and plug connected panels. The panels are on an angled frame that can be moved and adjusted to gather the most sunlight.
During my experiment today when I angled my two 95 watt panels toward the sun track they put out about 60 amps of power during the day. The day before when they were mounted the output was 21; same panels, same location, same weather, different panel attitudes. This is a favorable sun location in Southern California. I also think one panel was shadowed by the AC. It would seem that those who elect to make their panels portable instead of permanently mounted and then angle them toward the sun track during setup will get much more output from them than those who have them mounted on their trailer.
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Old 11-27-2014, 10:33 PM   #127
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Pretty graphic results. Did you "follow" the sun and reposition them several times?

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Old 11-27-2014, 11:02 PM   #128
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Pretty graphic results. Did you "follow" the sun and reposition them several times?

Ron
No! I just pointed them generally South and about 45 degree angle. Not very scientific but probably what they would see on an angled mount on the trailer roof. I put them in position after about 1 1/2 hours in the morning when I realized they need to be tilted upward. Also, I lost light early because I get shadow from the house about 2:30 in the afternoon. Camping in the open I will get more sun hours. I have them propped up now so tomorrow I should get more than today.
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Old 11-28-2014, 12:29 PM   #129
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Installing tilting panels sounds like a lot of trouble. More so having to adjust them when one sets up camp. I know me, and I know I'd forget to "stow" the roof panel before towing. Likely a very expensive mistake. So I'll have to stay with a flat roof panel.

I do wonder how much difference the solar controller makes. The Go Power solar controller Escape installs doesn't have a particularly good charging cycle. If one is trying to optimize battery charging the controller should also be a consideration. Ya, one more thing to throw on the trade off chart, thanks Hugh.

Thanks.
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Old 11-28-2014, 12:52 PM   #130
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Read where one person ties a rag to the steering wheel when the panels are up as a reminder. It'd be one more thing for the preflight checklist.
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