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Old 09-21-2012, 07:11 PM   #51
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Re: Solar musing

I highly recommend the solar, especially if you want to go off the grid. We picked up our new 15A at the end of August and headed out on a three week road trip. Practically all was off the grid and the solar worked great. Most of the times the batteries were charged up by 10 AM.

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Scott
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Old 09-22-2012, 12:20 AM   #52
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Re: Solar musing

A pattern has emerged. Those that do not have solar seem to have many reasons for why they are not really practical, but those that have solar would never be without. Resist the darkness, move toward the light - go for solar!
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Old 09-22-2012, 01:30 AM   #53
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Re: Solar musing

I got scared off solar by all the posts by electronics dweebs about monitors, amps, ohms, voltage, inverters, converters etc. etc.
It seemed you needed a Phd in physics and chemistry to monitor the systems.

If I were to do it again, I'd probably have solar panels on the roof. If nothing else, I can console myself with the knowledge that solar technology ( and battery technology ) is making huge advances.

I never could figure out where the pull cord was on those solar panels.

baglo
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Old 09-22-2012, 07:46 AM   #54
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Re: Solar musing

Quote:
Originally Posted by gbaglo
I got scared off solar by all the posts by electronics dweebs about monitors, amps, ohms, voltage, inverters, converters etc. etc.
It seemed you needed a Phd in physics and chemistry to monitor the systems.

If I were to do it again, I'd probably have solar panels on the roof. If nothing else, I can console myself with the knowledge that solar technology ( and battery technology ) is making huge advances.

I never could figure out where the pull cord was on those solar panels.

baglo
"It's right next to the pull cord on your toilet"
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Old 09-22-2012, 08:11 AM   #55
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Re: Solar musing

I'm still deciding what I want to buy, but one thing that is definitely on the list is solar.

Having said that, I wouldn't say the arguments in favour of solar are as clear cut as many proponents would make them out to be.

The best argument in favour of solar is that it is a so-called "green" technology. You get your power without messing up the environment. Except that manufacturing solar cells is a very dirty process. Which is dirtier, manufacturing solar cells or digging up and burning fossil fuels? I could take a guess, but I don't know for sure and I don't know how much.

Yes, with solar you save fuel when you're off the grid. No running a generator or your vehicle to top up your batteries. On the other hand, if your solar panels are fixed to the roof of your trailer, you can bet they reduce your fuel economy when you're towing. Extra turbulence means extra fuel spent. How much? Again, I don't have a clue.

For myself, it's as much about convenience as anything else. With solar I don't need to worry about having and maintaining a separate generator. Idling the tow vehicle works, but it offends my sense of waste to run such a large engine just to produce a small bit of electricity (but that's an emotional reaction -- it's not clear to me what the efficiency tradeoffs really are).
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Old 09-22-2012, 11:02 AM   #56
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Re: Solar musing

I also read somewhere that solar charging is a kinder gentler charge and your batteries enjoy it much better than a quick "hot shot jolt" back to full.
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Old 09-22-2012, 12:21 PM   #57
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Re: Solar musing

Like endless foreplay?
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Old 09-22-2012, 02:00 PM   #58
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Re: Solar musing

I'm thinking along the same lines as Roger and Paul, particularly the "it depends" part. I think the pattern that is emerging is that if you live in or travel to sunny areas solar power is worth investing in. With the climate in the Pacific Northwest the cost/benefit ratio doesn't seem to be worth it right now.

In my driveway, solar would likely work most of the year but when we camp variables such as where (usually a forest), time of year, length of stay and weather seems to preclude our use of solar power. Again, if anyone has success in the Pacific Northwest I'd like to hear.

Thanks,

Dave
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Old 09-22-2012, 03:43 PM   #59
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Re: Solar musing

Quote:
Originally Posted by J Mac
Like endless foreplay?
Hi: J Mac...Being kept in the dark...and on your knees praying all the time is no big deal!!! I do it. Alf
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Old 09-22-2012, 04:04 PM   #60
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Re: Solar musing

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave D.
I'm thinking along the same lines as Roger and Paul, particularly the "it depends" part. I think the pattern that is emerging is that if you live in or travel to sunny areas solar power is worth investing in. With the climate in the Pacific Northwest the cost/benefit ratio doesn't seem to be worth it right now.

In my driveway, solar would likely work most of the year but when we camp variables such as where (usually a forest), time of year, length of stay and weather seems to preclude our use of solar power. Again, if anyone has success in the Pacific Northwest I'd like to hear.

Thanks,

Dave
I read someplace that the solar panel charges thru the cover installed on the camper, in other words sunshine is not necessary, just day light. It may take longer but they do work in the shade and rain.
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