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  • What solar panel

    Are Projecta solar panels OK? eg: http://www.batteriesdirect.com.au/sh...717/spp40.html

    I'm trying to work out what solar panel to buy. There's plenty on e-bay but how to tell a good one? It seems so many of them say for example 60W and yet they are similar dimensions as a 40W Projecta or Jaycar panels......

    I'm looking for a 40W to 80W panel, although 80W is probably too big. Ideally I'd probably get an 80w fold-out set, but they are so much more expensive and I want the controller near the battery. So maybe 2x40W panels, or a 50-60w panel.

    Anyone have any recommendations or suggestions on panels?

  • #2
    Don't think you can ever go too big on solar. I started with 100w then added another 120w. I've just got another 120w so up to 340w total but I initially thought 100w was way more than I needed.

    The old saying of you get what you pay for is very true with solar panels. You could get a couple of panels both rated at 100w but the cheaper one might have a lower efficiency, especially in hot conditions as heat is a killer of solar efficiency.
    Warren
    2012 NW DiD Activ

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    • #3
      Work out how much power you need first, then go from there.
      MPPT
      your are correct with the controller near the battery
      Monitor your battery level, DON'T let the battery go flat.

      Be aware of volt drop.

      Trisome
      2007 VRX, Cold Air, HPD Intercooler, 3" Exhaust, ECU West Tune, Lovels Springs, EFS Shockies.

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      • #4
        be aware that a battery under 12v is flat.... infact 12v is pretty much flat....
        1994 NJ 3.0 now with a 2000NL 3.5 engine and driveline, 2.5 catback, 32" MT Deegan 38's, 1" body lift, front diff drop with front tension rods indexed and cranked an 3", 3" on the rear coils
        *** retired to the big wrecking yard in the sky***
        1998 NL 3.5 blisterside, 305.70.16's on -44 rims 3.5" suspension lift, Custom Bull bar, winch install, custom front control arms, NJ GLS flares and some camping gear in the back AND 8 PSI of BOOOOOST

        .... and 1990 Nissan Z32 300zx for on road shenanigans
        .

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        • #5
          Originally posted by stumagoo View Post
          be aware that a battery under 12v is flat.... infact 12v is pretty much flat....
          Sorry - that statement really needs some qualification about how / when the measurement is taken. When I measure 12v at my fridge while it's running, my aux battery is a long way from flat.

          Even no load / rested a 12V battery is a long way from "flat" - but depending on your system, your battery, the state of discharge you're prepared to accept, you really need to understand what you're doing before you continue discharging.
          NT Platinum. DiD Auto with 265/70R17 Toyo MT, Lift, Lockers, Lockup Mate, Low range reduction, LRA Aux tank, bull bar, winch, lots of touring stuff. Flappy paddles. MMCS is gone!

          Project: NJ SWB. 285/75R16 ST Maxx, 2" OME suspension, 2" body lift, ARB 110, 120l tank, bullbar, scratches, no major dents. Fully engineered in SA. NW DiD & auto in place - a long way to go....

          Scorpro Explorer Box

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          • #6
            Originally posted by jol View Post
            I'm looking for a 40W to 80W panel, although 80W is probably too big.
            What is your application for which 80W is too big? Many members have requirements for which 120W is about as small as they need.

            Not saying you're wrong, just that your requirements differ from most that we see.
            NT Platinum. DiD Auto with 265/70R17 Toyo MT, Lift, Lockers, Lockup Mate, Low range reduction, LRA Aux tank, bull bar, winch, lots of touring stuff. Flappy paddles. MMCS is gone!

            Project: NJ SWB. 285/75R16 ST Maxx, 2" OME suspension, 2" body lift, ARB 110, 120l tank, bullbar, scratches, no major dents. Fully engineered in SA. NW DiD & auto in place - a long way to go....

            Scorpro Explorer Box

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            • #7
              Originally posted by nj swb View Post
              What is your application for which 80W is too big?
              Just physical size. I will be camping and only have the Pajero, so it has to fit in the car. My longest stop is 3 days. If I can get enough power to run the fridge (Engel 40L) during the day then I should be OK. An 80W foldout would do that easily I think (I'll have a 105Ah second battery and DC-DC charger).

              But what's a good panel? eg:
              https://outbaxcamping.com.au/80w-sol...xoCtqoQAvD_BwE
              seems way too cheap including MTTP controller, and the last image on typical applications (page 6) from the manual does not inspire confidence (with the solar regulator directly feeding an inverter!).
              Attached Files

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jol View Post
                Just physical size. I will be camping and only have the Pajero, so it has to fit in the car. My longest stop is 3 days. If I can get enough power to run the fridge (Engel 40L) during the day then I should be OK. An 80W foldout would do that easily I think (I'll have a 105Ah second battery and DC-DC charger).

                But what's a good panel? eg:
                https://outbaxcamping.com.au/80w-sol...xoCtqoQAvD_BwE
                seems way too cheap including MTTP controller, and the last image on typical applications (page 6) from the manual does not inspire confidence (with the solar regulator directly feeding an inverter!).
                I recently did a test over 2 days with my engel 40 litre. At a minimum of 26 and a maximum of 35 for both days, I saw 70amps pulled from the battery. I did not open the fridge at all and it was full of beer cans (full and at 2 degrees Celsius). This was in Cairns. Summer in Sydney may see slightly lower amperage.(). Personally I would by a quality MPPT regulator (Victron....not cheap but good quality and I also have the Bluetooth link to monitor battery charge and solar input). Ideally you dont want to take your battery below 50% of its capacity. I,d go for a 160watt folding panel, thick leads and ,as I said, a quality regulator. Nothing worse than gear letting you down when for a few dollars more you could have a reliable system. Dont forget that you will have weekends/days away where the solar panel will be limited. Cloudy , overcast days could see little input from the panel and if the weather is hot and you are camped up for 3 days 80watt panel is not going to cut it. Keep searching for foldaway panels and go for 160watts. You can never have too much power!.
                Maybe this, with a free watt meter to help monitor power usage and solar panel out put

                ...These fold in 3 sections so may help with car storage..

                https://www.australiandirect.com.au/...el_for_camping

                cheers.
                Last edited by Dicko1; 27-02-18, 09:54 AM.
                Dicko FNQ


                2014 NW with all the usual stuff plus more.
                Having lots of friends on facebook is the same as having lots of money in monopoly...both meaningless.

                .

                Telegraph X camper

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                • #9
                  hi i have brought a few panels 60w then received it flat out being 30w went in bin never buy from that seller again .i then brought 150w solar blanket from supacheap $399 on special puts out more tha n it says i just changed the cable to better quality .now i still wanted 1 fixed in the basket up top so i hunted umm arrr alot and went with this 1 on ebay he has 100% feed back so took a gamble here is the link it works fantastic not to big but it does deliver the power it says

                  http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/130W-12V-...72.m2749.l2649


                  regards john

                  need anymore info just ask

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                  • #10
                    Just as a follow-up and to close out this thread, and to thank everyone for their helpful advice, I ended up buying a Harr Korr 150w fold out mat. See also https://www2.pajeroclub.com.au/forum...ad.php?t=60458

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                    • #11
                      Good move. You should be able to generate around 10amps when you have full sun so run that for 4 hours and 40 amps have gone back in to the battery. Less the power used by the fridge during that time of course.
                      2015 NX GLS, Factory alloy bar, Kings HD Springs & Koni Shocks with 50mm lift, MM Auto Mate, Paddle shift kit, dual batteries with Redarc DC/DC, LRA 58L tank, Safari snorkel, Boo's bash plates (full set), 17" steels with BFG KO2's, Drifta drawers with slide, TPMS, Uniden UH8080S, Alpine iLX-702D head unit. Goldstream caravan and a TVan Firetail.

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