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Old 07-24-2016, 08:28 PM   #1
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solar panel to assist honda 2000 generator...

Hi,
I have done a solar panel to 12dc battery to inverter to 120 vac system before, but now I want to go solar panel to 120 vac syncronized to the honda generator 120 to assist it.

Is this possible? I want to see if I can reduce my gasoline consumption.

Thanks,
groundbogy
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Old 07-24-2016, 08:33 PM   #2
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i dont want to hear any snarky comments on how much it would cost or where will i store all 20 or so panels....
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Old 07-24-2016, 09:01 PM   #3
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Snarky comments from anyone here, how is that possible.

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i dont want to hear any snarky comments on how much it would cost or where will i store all 20 or so panels....
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Old 07-24-2016, 09:46 PM   #4
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solar panel to assist honda 2000 generator...

Look for Lewster's posts on solar recharged AGM or lithium battery systems with an inverter capable of boosting the generator to get the AC started with a smallish Honda. It's been done, I just don't know where the thread is. Maybe PM lewster (Lew Farber) and ask him about what it would require.

No, it's not going to be cheap...or snarky....


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Old 07-24-2016, 10:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by groundhogy View Post
Hi,
I have done a solar panel to 12dc battery to inverter to 120 vac system before, but now I want to go solar panel to 120 vac syncronized to the honda generator 120 to assist it.

Is this possible? I want to see if I can reduce my gasoline consumption.

Thanks,
groundbogy
Magnum MSH-3012........Victron MultiPlus 12/2000/80-50........ Victron MultiPlus 12/3000/120-50. All are 'hybrid' inverter/chargers that will seamlessly synch your battery system to the low power source (1600 running watts from your generator) to provide load support for starting and running larger loads than the generator can handle alone. They all still require the generator's input sooooooo:

Reduce your generator's gas consumption......highly doubtful.

Possible on a single lead acid battery..........NOPE!

All of the above hybrid inverter/chargers require a substantial battery bank to draw from. If they are lead/acid, you have to calculate the substantial Peukert losses depending on your load. Lithiums WILL do the job, but are expensive and require sophisticated charging systems.

You might try the residential side of the solar industry for more possibilities, but from the RV/Marine side........sorry!!! .....AIN'T HAPPNIN'
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Old 08-12-2016, 08:31 PM   #6
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What sophisticated charging systems do LI batteries require? Aren't there off the shelf chargers that can be purchased with remote control and indicate condition of battery system?

I understand there is an enormous up front cost for LI batteries but if I can get 100s if not 1000s of more cycles out of them vs AGM or gel I may not be ready to walk away. Then you also have to consider the weight advantage LI has over any other lead type battery.
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Old 08-12-2016, 11:43 PM   #7
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What sophisticated charging systems do LI batteries require? Aren't there off the shelf chargers that can be purchased with remote control and indicate condition of battery system?

I understand there is an enormous up front cost for LI batteries but if I can get 100s if not 1000s of more cycles out of them vs AGM or gel I may not be ready to walk away. Then you also have to consider the weight advantage LI has over any other lead type battery.
Lithium cells contained in the batteries do not self-balance like lead based batteries do. As all lithium cells are not created exactly equal, this requires an external means of monitoring and balancing those various cells within a lithium pack to be sure that they all receive the same amount of charging.

Battery monitor systems are available for a variety of cells with many available from lithium manufacturers making their own proprietary monitor systems. Victron is one company that sells their own lithium batteries in a variety of sizes and capacities, along with several types of battery monitoring systems. Their product quality is excellent, and they have been in the mobile electronics field for 40 years.

Cheap? Definitely NOT! Lighter weight, far longer life with more capacity thru increased draw levels.....definitey! It's really a matter of what works for you and your circumstances.
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Old 08-13-2016, 02:53 AM   #8
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I have been around power station wet cell battery installation and maintenance for 30 years. RV battery installs a somewhat but totally different technology (hardware) and a way of thinking out how to design it.

I have had several 5th wheels and 2 motorhomes. The motorhomes had onboard coach batteries/inverter systems. We just bought us a 65 AS and will be totally rewiring it so that it will be able to run off grid.

I am in design stage now. Have not nailed anything down as certain. Kicking around that it will have 30 amp normal feed w/ 8-12 slot split AC distribution panel, 1800-2000 watt generator, 200-300 watts of solar w/ 30 amp solar controller, 30-40 amp LI battery charger w/ remote controls, 200 AH LI batteries, 2000 watt modified sine wave LI battery inverter and 8-12 position 12vdc distribution panel.

Throw in all the wire, fuses and manufacturers names and you got a system.

That is where I am running into a brick wall. Who makes the best bang for my dollar? There are so many out there. I know about Magnum but cannot find where they do LI.

Also I can stll be talke out of LI. It is a trade off of weight and price. If I was going to lead acid I would use 4-6vdc to get my 200 AH and add about 100 lbs to my installation plus having to vent it and maintenance down the road.

So any help from the experts is most wanted and appreciated
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Old 08-13-2016, 04:30 AM   #9
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Victron Energy has some nice hardware. Will call Monday. Have some ideas that are floating around using their Easysolar Controller. As small as this trailer is and what our needs are, this may be the ticket
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Old 08-13-2016, 06:50 PM   #10
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Look at the AM Solar web site. We have been doing lithiums for 4 years and are heavily into Victron components.

I'm sure you will find exactly what you need without re-inventing the wheel.


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Old 08-14-2016, 07:37 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by lewster View Post
Look at the AM Solar web site. We have been doing lithiums for 4 years and are heavily into Victron components.

I'm sure you will find exactly what you need without re-inventing the wheel.


Lew Farber
You are exactly right and that is why they call you the master. I was on the Victron site yesterday (followed it from your signature) and had an awakening.

You and this hardware has just saved me a ton of work (not sure about money) but I am going to be calling them today and see what they can do for me. I like the one stop shop idea.

Thanks
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Old 08-15-2016, 08:05 AM   #12
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Here is a suggestion to try relative to the original post.

With the Victron and I assume Magnum hybrid inverters you can set a max shore power current draw. A hypothetical case below. There will be inefficiencies in the inverter and during current draw from the battery so some trial and error would be required.

Assuming you have 600W solar you should be able to pull in a steady 5-600W assuming full sun.
Set the shore power limit on the Victron to say 10A / 110VAC (1100W).
Your generator should now run at no more than 10A (not its full rating) which will reduce fuel consumption. How much depends on model and full load / part load consumption.
If you have a cloudy period the battery makes up the 600W no longer coming in from solar so a large battery is a good idea.

The net should be that the battery stays approximately full and you use the generators 10A fuel consumption rate and not the 16A consumption rate.

I have tried this with my Victron system and a 30A input (throttled to 9.5A). With part sun on my 600W system and intermittent A/C operation (drawing about 1600W 50% of the time), the battery stayed at the same SOC and actually charged a little. Probably means I could manage with a Honda 1000 generator rather than a 2000 so long as it is sunny.

Interesting thought. Probably still get the the 2000 though......

By the way, the Victron system is GREAT as is AM Solar who supplied most of my setup.
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Old 08-16-2016, 11:27 AM   #13
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Splurge on that genset.....

""Interesting thought. Probably still get the the 2000 though......""

Yeaaa, OhioBrits, if you can cash out on 864ah LI battery set go ahead splurge on that extra 1k on the genset

I am trying to cut draw down to afford a 200-300ah LI system. May have to install more candle holders.
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Old 08-16-2016, 07:52 PM   #14
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""Interesting thought. Probably still get the the 2000 though......""

Yeaaa, OhioBrits, if you can cash out on 864ah LI battery set go ahead splurge on that extra 1k on the genset

I am trying to cut draw down to afford a 200-300ah LI system. May have to install more candle holders.
Hey, I started with a 220AHr AGM system which worked OK for a while even for light use of a Microwave and coffee maker and the usual 12V users. To run the A/C however is a completely different ball game....

The batteries I used are CALB CAM 72FI cells. They are very popular in the electric vehicle market. You need 4 of the 3.2V cells to make a 12.8V 72 AHr battery. They cost about $100 per cell plus BMS, busbars etc. So for a 288 AHr pack (batteries only, 16 cells) would be about $1700 and weight only 68 lbs. Expect to spend another several hundred dollars on a BMS, contactors, class H fuse etc. Certainly not cheap but by Lithium battery standards not bad.
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