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Old 11-30-2014, 08:42 PM   #1
1 Rivet Member
Oakland , California
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 13
CAT5 for Blue Sky IPNPro Remote?

I have a 2014 27FB Eddie Bauer with existing factory installed solar package. It has two 53-watt panels, the Atkinson Electronics PVCM25D charge controller and Atkinson Electronics PVDM4-LC "Sunexplorer" remote display/monitor. After just a few multi-day boondocking trips, I've found the system to be insufficient for our needs. I'm thinking 400 watts, but may eventually upgrade to 600. Not yet sure if I should completely scrap the 53-watt panels and put 100-watt panels instead.

I'm considering going with the SunRunner Signature 40MPPT/4/Pro Core from AMSolar. However, the issue is that the IPNPro remote with battery monitor appears to require two separate cables -- (1) RJ-11 (to the charge controller), and (2) 18/2 twisted pair (to the 500A/50mV shunt). Reference system diagram here:

The question is whether I can use the existing Cat-5 cable connecting the Atkinson controller to the remote display/monitor. I would like to locate the new IPNPro remote in the same place after removing the Sunexplorer remote, but would be much more difficult to run a new cable to the same interior wall panel location. Is it possible to use the Cat-5 for the connections both to the charge controller and to the shunt?

Or should I avoid this issue entirely by sizing up to the SunRunner Signature 45MPPT/4 System Core with the Morningstar Tristar-45 controller which only requires a single RJ-11 cable to its remote display/monitor?

Option 1 -- use the Cat-5 for both cables.
Option 2 -- run new cable(s)
Option 3 -- get the Morningstar controller and monitor

Anyone have experience repurposing the Cat-5 cable from a factory solar install this way?


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Old 12-01-2014, 07:23 AM   #2
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2016 30' Classic
Erie , Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2013
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Mike hopefully Lew will confirm what I am about to answer. You can likely use the existing cable, assuming that you are removing/replacing the Atkinson. Fo the shunt wire they are calling for a gauge size that is larger than Cat5. If memory is correct Cat5 is usually 22-24 gauge.
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