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Old 08-25-2014, 12:40 PM   #71
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Lew would be interested in what your are going to use for an inverter/charger, if in fact you are going to install one? Good to hear that Bluesky has a charger that works with the LiFo4 batteries. Is that a new model?
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Old 08-25-2014, 02:00 PM   #72
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I have a Magnum MS 2812 but I rely exclusively on solar for battery charging, so there is no shore line. All of the newer Magnum ME-RC remotes have a constant current/constant voltage charge setting that works well with the lithiums.

I'll be tracking the charge amperage to see how these flex panels compare to the 5 GS 100s that I just removed.


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Old 08-25-2014, 02:39 PM   #73
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I think you'll be pleased Lew. My 400w of GoPower panels are pumping out over 20amps. You can't even see them when you are standing near the trailer.

They kept me charged up for a week w/o a converter with a family of 4 using power without any conservation efforts in place. Even when it was well over 100F.
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Old 08-25-2014, 04:12 PM   #74
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Lew, the only question I have is if you are testing these panels to see how they react to heat, shouldn't you be doing a test with them placed flat on a roof as they would be in a real life situation on an Airstream roof?


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Old 08-25-2014, 07:45 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by gmeikle View Post
Lew, the only question I have is if you are testing these panels to see how they react to heat, shouldn't you be doing a test with them placed flat on a roof as they would be in a real life situation on an Airstream roof?


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Yep! But unfortunately that's not possible if you look at the layout of my Sprinter's roof. There are still enough contact points on the raised ribs to get a good idea, and I also have a single panel mounted on an aluminum sheet that I'll be watching for a comparison.
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Old 08-25-2014, 09:02 PM   #76
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Not exactly scientific unless you have that sheet directly touching everywhere.
When will you be able to do a real test as it was you who adamantly said that that was the problem with the panels, so I'm sure there are others out there who are just as interested as I am.


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Old 08-25-2014, 09:37 PM   #77
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We already know that there are 'problems' with these panels when compared to the glass/aluminum framed GS-100 series hard panels. The version 1 of these panels had a thinner backing which cupped when heated by solar radiation, collecting dirt over center of each cell. These new flex panels have a much heavier backing that reduces the cupping, but the cells are still not optically flat like the ones found in the glass panels, even though they use the very same cells.

They also had reduced amperage amperage when compared to raised, hard panels, more than likely due to the higher operating temperatures that come with flush mounting directly to the roof. They still scratch as the top layer is plastic, not glass, even though some folks like to Cha-Cha on theirs. Maybe I would too if I was sponsored by the solar company!

They both have the same ratings in laboratory STC, or Standard Test Conditions. I don't need to re-invent the wheel for exact lab conditions, rather, I want to see what kind of amperage they give me in the real world.

The flex panels are not as sensitive to low light conditions when compared to hard glass panels. Probably the lower light transmissivity of the plastic top when compared to the glass. I've already had 3 years with the hard panels so I have a ton of charging data. The flex panels will provide more data, and they will both be compared.

If you want a totally rigid, scientifically based test, I suggest that you purchase one of each panel, mount then side by side with identical charge controllers and battery banks using identical loads and keep an hourly log of what is going in/out of the panels and batteries with accurate battery monitor systems. Only then will you have the type of accuracy that you seek. Unfortunately, my work schedule will not allow for this amount of data keeping time.

I'll stick to my bulk data and observations, thanks! I still won't recommend the flex panels until I see that their output is satisfactory in my situation when compared to the rigid panels.
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Old 08-27-2014, 01:50 PM   #78
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Ok out there, I have read everything I can find on the Renogy 100w flexible Panels ($199 each plus shipping) and there are a lot of positive comments, but I can't find much on the Go Power 100w Solar Flex ($400) yet as they are newer. I am prepared to pay more for quality but really have nothing more to go on other than advertised specs, and manufacturers comments, and they are so close as to be the same.These are the only 2 types of panels I am interested in after my research. Does anyone have any useful info on either?
Thanks.


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Old 08-27-2014, 03:33 PM   #79
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GoPower warranty is 10 years. Renogy is 5.


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Old 08-27-2014, 05:51 PM   #80
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GoPower warranty is 10 years. Renogy is 5.


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Well, you have to be careful with that. Trying to read the fine print, it basically says that the modules are guaranteed to work for 10 years and that a gradual decline in efficiency is not a warrantable claim. They also say that if there is the slightest bit of damage even to an eyelet that the claim can be denied. So I am guessing that taping or gluing it to your roof would constitute damage that would void any warranty.
I am trying to get clarification from them as 10 would certainly be better than 5, but at double the price?????


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Old 08-27-2014, 11:47 PM   #81
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Hi there,

These Renogy panels are also just panels, the Go Power! GP-FLEX-100 should be a full kit online with a 30 amp digital solar controller, mounting hardware etc. Some of the panel differences are a larger gauge wire, bigger and stronger grommets, 10 year warranty etc.

They are also being used by Airstream at the factory level.

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Old 08-27-2014, 11:56 PM   #82
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I am comparing panel to panel. I do not need a solar controller as I already have that and a battery monitor installed. As for wiring, I will be using 6 AWG from the connection point of the panels.
Jury is still out.


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Old 08-28-2014, 02:06 AM   #83
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Hi there,



They are also being used by Airstream at the factory level.

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As we all know from reading the forums. Airstream also uses the Magnatek/Parallax at the factory level, and we all know how that is working out for us.


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Old 08-28-2014, 10:24 AM   #84
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As we all know from reading the forums. Airstream also uses the Magnatek/Parallax at the factory level, and we all know how that is working out for us.


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