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Old 09-05-2016, 10:19 AM   #21
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Where the cells are made and where the panels are assembled are not necessary the same place. Reneogy cells come from Germany according to their web site.
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Old 09-05-2016, 09:25 PM   #22
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Zamp panels are Bosch.
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Old 09-05-2016, 10:17 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Offack View Post
For those of you with 25' FC front bedroom, the zamp 160's when put away in their suitcase fit perfectly in the storage locker next to refridge drivers side, on the left side. Almost as though spot was made for them. Just added a strap to hold top against wall. Does not interfere with normal use of locker . I have two 6 volt lifeline Agm and the panels bring them up in about 4 hrs f good solid sun. The panels connect to the batteries with the optional exterior (15 buck?) adaptor I bought when I bought the panels and mounted on the side of the battery box.
Also for those with the above mentioned TT , if you extend the top of your battery box, I don't believe you can open the storage locker behind the batties on the front of the coach. I blew out the bottom of my battery box and added two inches on the bottom.
Rick

Thanks for the tip, that's the setup we are interested in getting.
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Old 09-06-2016, 05:41 AM   #24
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To greghoro's question: I move the panels a few times during the day to track the sun. This helps improve performance since they generate the most energy when the surface of the panel is perpendicular to the sun's rays. I use a range of common camp stuff to raise one edge by placing it in the middle of the edge where the two panels meet (the plastic bin in which I keep oils, greases, sealers, etc when traveling is about 12" tall and is the most common prop). I have propped them against a camp table for early or late sun low in the sky. I'm mindful of wind, but no problems so far. I riveted a looped hanger to each panel and use light metal chain and a padlock to keep them from walking away. Of course, a person with a light bolt cutter could still get them for a great price.

If I made another set I would not use sliding hinges. I've never seen fit to deploy just one panel and they are light enough to move and deploy as a pair.

I added $2, round hardware store magnets to the controller's feet. They stick securely to the A frame. Works great.

I hinged the panels with the working sides out, not in. These panels are quite impact resistant and since they ride under a hard tonneau and since tonneaus leak a bit I wanted to minimize the chances of the panels filling with water. So far, so good on that point.

The best thing I added were the Anderson Power couplers. I have one wired into the battery bank and one on the feed end of the controller. It is a better connection IMO than alligator clips and I don't have to open the battery box to set up. It also gives me a port to plug additional 12v stuff including a third battery which I carry in the truck or trailer for cold weather boondocking. I'd love to have two or move 6v batteries, but we don't need that much capacity often and I couldn't handle the extra tongue weight. The 12v quick disconect with a battery in a box gives me the same amp hours with zero extra tongue weight for less money. Works for me. Here's a link: https://www.amazon.com/Gauge-Battery...Anderson&psc=1
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Old 09-06-2016, 06:20 PM   #25
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GammaDog--any reason the controller couldn't be inside the battery box or front storage compartment permanently wired to the battery, with two leads with RENOGY quick connectors to connect to the wire coming form the panels?
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Old 09-06-2016, 07:23 PM   #26
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GammaDog--any reason the controller couldn't be inside the battery box or front storage compartment permanently wired to the battery, with two leads with RENOGY quick connectors to connect to the wire coming form the panels?
That's what I did with mine. Controller and shunt close to the batteries, but inside the trailer ( 25fb Fb) with the 6awg back up to the front to an Anderson connector beside the battery box.
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Old 09-07-2016, 08:04 AM   #27
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That should work

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Originally Posted by fran&frank View Post
GammaDog--any reason the controller couldn't be inside the battery box or front storage compartment permanently wired to the battery, with two leads with RENOGY quick connectors to connect to the wire coming form the panels?
It sounds like gandtimes did it that way. It certainly should work. I chose the approach I used for a couple of reasons...

I don't believe my Renogy controller is weatherproof. The inside of my battery box doesn't seem fully protected from weather (the lid has no gasket and there are holes where wires enter and exit) so I only expose it to the elements when weather is good enough to use solar charging. Plus my battery box is a tight fit.

On the EB 25 the inside compartment is under the bed. It's hard to get wires in there, plus "the boss" likes to nap in the afternoon while I'm tinkering. Since the controller has indicator lights that show panel and battery status I wanted easy access when in use and the inside compartment doesn't give me that.

Another thought: I'm big on the Anderson connectors. By having the panels and controller portable as a unit and an Anderson on the charge side of the controller I can make up another Anderson with alligator clips to charge a dead car battery or help someone else away from my trailer. Ditto on the trailer-mounted Anderson... I can use it to attach 12 v accessories (maybe an Anderson with a cigarette lighter into which I can plug the 12 v portable fan we carry) or my spare battery.

Also, note that the connectors on the panels are industry standard MC4 fittings. They are not particularly easy to connect and disconnect (they have O rings for weather tightness). Some versions of the MC4 require a tool to disconnect them. I am planning to add a switch to the positive feed line from my panels to the controller so I don't have to unplug a leg during setup and take down. I do that now since the controller must be powered from the battery side before the panels are connected to it and exposed to the sun. Having the controller permanently mounted would avoid that problem, so that's another plus for gandtimes method.

One more technical detail... Be sure to add fuses on both the positive panel-to-controller leg (there is an inline MC4 connector made for that purpose but I don't believe it came with the Renogy 200w bundle) and on the positive leg from the controller to the battery bank (I used an automotive fuse holder soldered into the 10ga wire between the Anderson mounted on my battery box and the positive terminal connection).

So... I'm happy having the controller the way I do. Sorry for the long reply.
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Old 09-07-2016, 09:18 AM   #28
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[QUOTE=GammaDog;1847212]It sounds like gandtimes did it that way. It certainly should work. I chose the approach I used for a couple of reasons

I should clarify. I have the SC2030 controller mounted under the bed in the from and I also have the TM2030 mounted inside the FB closet so I don't need to do anything else with the controller. Just plug the panels into the Andersen connector near the battery.
You can buy the Renogy suitcase setup without a built in controller and this is what I may do if I can't get decent flexible panels.
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Old 09-07-2016, 09:37 AM   #29
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Here's my simple solution to keeping the batteries topped off. This along with all LED lighting helps, but doesn't do it all. I have a 2000W portable generator for when needed. We camp in Eastern forests with lots of shade. An extension cable usually gets to panel to a sunny spot. The cheap controller is not water proof. It resides in the battery box. I caught it on sale plus had a 25% off coupon. Shipped to the store it was $129.00. Pretty good deal.

It has already saved me more than the cost by preserving batteries.

http://www.northerntool.com/shop/too...YiEaAjuP8P8HAQ
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Old 09-08-2016, 08:11 AM   #30
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Reneogy 100 watt suitcase panels without controller are available from Renogy on their web site for $225 delivered and $230 from their EBay page.
Even with the extended top there is not room for the controller in my battery box, plus the box is not water resistant much less waterproof. I have the controller in a plastic waterproof ammo type box. There is room for wiring storage and so far cooling does not seem to be a problem (used in mid 90s ambient temps).
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Old 11-20-2016, 04:04 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by AWCHIEF View Post
Reneogy 100 watt suitcase panels without controller are available from Renogy on their web site for $225 delivered and $230 from their EBay page.
Even with the extended top there is not room for the controller in my battery box, plus the box is not water resistant much less waterproof. I have the controller in a plastic waterproof ammo type box. There is room for wiring storage and so far cooling does not seem to be a problem (used in mid 90s ambient temps).
Michael - Where do you put the plastic ammo box with the controller? Inside the cover with your propane tanks or just outside while using the suitcase panels?
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Old 11-21-2016, 06:44 AM   #32
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Michael - Where do you put the plastic ammo box with the controller? Inside the cover with your propane tanks or just outside while using the suitcase panels?
On top of battery box when in use. Not the ideal spot security wise.
On my todo list is to mount it inside the trailer somehow.
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Old 12-23-2016, 06:17 AM   #33
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I received my Renogy 100-Watt suitcase a few days ago, which I "pre-ordered" during the Black Friday sale. Yesterday the latest email promotion arrived for either a 100-Watt or 200-Watt suitcase. Naturally, I would have purchased the 200-Watt unit if it had been an option last month. Oh well!
https://www.renogy.com/products/sola...eid=3a7f2827ee
Merry Christmas!
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Old 12-23-2016, 01:18 PM   #34
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You certain can make your own portable. I thought about doing that but I couldn't find any legs to purchase that I could attach to the panels. If you find some legs please post the URL to the source. If you want join the portables to your on board you would need to plug the portables into the same wiring as the roof top's solar controller so only one controller is monitoring the panels. Verify the onboard controller can hand the extra panels.

I have the Zamp 200 currently but will be adding 200w (AMSolar kit) to the roof. I'm going to remove the Zamp controller off the back of the panels and plug into a side port the installer will provide to join the roof and Zamp panels to the Blue Sky controller so it controls both the roof and portable.

Kelvin

I have a couple of 100w amsolar panels I'll be installing soon. Any concerns about tying in different panels "brands" like Reno by or Zamp into the same controller (Victron mttp 30)? I'm considering an additional 200 portable with a port to the controller as you described.
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Old 12-23-2016, 01:25 PM   #35
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I have a couple of 100w amsolar panels I'll be installing soon. Any concerns about tying in different panels "brands" like Reno by or Zamp into the same controller (Victron mttp 30)? I'm considering an additional 200 portable with a port to the controller as you described.
The only concern I am aware of is to make sure that the output voltage of the panels is within 1V of each other. The closer the better for maximum amperage output of the combined panels.

I have a Renogy 100 watt panel on the roof and a 160 watt Zamp suitcase. IIRC, they were .9 different in voltage. They play very well with each other, in parallel.
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Old 12-23-2016, 02:59 PM   #36
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I would call ZAMP. i think I saw a Tube video that suggested ZAMP panels have a reverse polarity. Any if you mix with another brand, you need to buy a special adapter.
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Old 12-23-2016, 03:01 PM   #37
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I would call ZAMP. i think I saw a Tube video that suggested ZAMP panels have a reverse polarity. Any if you mix with another brand, you need to buy a special adapter.
Well, I've never heard that and mine are not reversed. The suitcase is made up of two 80 watt Bosch Monocrystalline panels in parallel.
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Old 12-23-2016, 03:20 PM   #38
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Go to U-Tube Video titled: What you Need to Know About ZAMP Solar Plugs
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Old 06-29-2017, 09:58 AM   #39
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Interested in portable solar probably 200 but here in canada, it seems the zamp cost around $1700.00. Anyone in canada purchased the zamp 200 at a better price?
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Old 06-29-2017, 10:15 AM   #40
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Amazon

https://www.amazon.com/Zamp-Solar-20...words=zamp+200
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