Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
 
Old 04-07-2014, 11:42 PM   #15
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
First of all, a big public THANKS! to aquinob! I did have a bad solder connection. I owe you a beer, amigo!

Second,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mexray View Post
In other news, my favorite new toy is a butane soldering iron from Home Depot. Trust me - if you're trying to solder 6 gauge copper, it's between that and a Big Soldering Gun - and this is a bunch cheaper. By the way, forget the reviews. Mine lit off the very first time and worked perfectly.

Seriously, thanks for busting my chops on the bad soldering. I can (and will) do better than that.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	20140407_193744.jpg
Views:	158
Size:	174.4 KB
ID:	209210  
__________________

__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-09-2014, 12:22 AM   #16
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
Well, the connectors from Grainger didn't work out, but they were close. However, I did manage (with the wire ends pre-tinned and the butane soldering iron) to get some decent solder joints.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	20140408_214304.jpg
Views:	181
Size:	179.5 KB
ID:	209262  
__________________

__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-11-2014, 12:20 AM   #17
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
Update - box being pre-wired before it goes on the roof.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	20140410_205712.jpg
Views:	160
Size:	238.6 KB
ID:	209389  
__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-11-2014, 09:40 PM   #18
Rivet Master
 
carl2591's Avatar
 
2005 31' Classic
Garner, , North Carolina
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 775
Quote:
Originally Posted by drboyd View Post
Well, the connectors from Grainger didn't work out, but they were close. However, I did manage (with the wire ends pre-tinned and the butane soldering iron) to get some decent solder joints.
here's an "ideer".. take a bit of the cable to lowes or HD and see what size copper tubing, the soft stuff, it slides into .. buy you a foot of that and make your own connectors.. how.. cut the tubing about 3/4" longer than your cable connection, about 3/8", then hammer the rest flat.. drill a hole the size you need and connect to your bus bar. You can use a flat bit of metal to hammer or crimp the cable in the connector you made and if you want solder it as well.
__________________
Carl, Raleigh NC
2-24-16 got a 2005 Classic 31D
Timeshare owner/user since '99
TUG2.net check it out for good rental deals
2003 F-250 SD, CC, 7.3L PowerStroke
WBCCI#1691, Piedmont Unit #161, Region #3
carl2591 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-11-2014, 11:45 PM   #19
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
Good idea, Carl! The ring connectors I'm using at the relay with the 6 gauge are standard size yellow with the insulation removed, then opened, crimped and soldered with heat shrink to re-insulate. If I can't get that to work with the size 4 wires going down to the batteries, I'll try your copper tubing plan!!

Thanks!!
__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2014, 12:13 AM   #20
4 Rivet Member
 
Currently Looking...
ottawa (greely) , Ontario
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 390
Blog Entries: 1
Looks good ,I think your breakers on the roof is a good idea as you want to protect as close to the output power source (as you mentioned ) and they will probably never trip ,my home solar has never tripped a breaker so far after one year of installation , as for your wiring I'm not sure if you used ( solar panel wiring ) as it is rated for outdoor use agains the suns u.v rays , or if your wiring was for something else as charge controller etc. or if the wire gauge was the right size , solar panel wiring is I think 8 or 10 gauge I will have to check , anyways your solar project looks good !
__________________
2012 silverado ext cab 4x4 ,5.3 L , 6 speed trans,3:42 final drive,tow package standard box 6 1/2 foot . 2014 honda forza 300 scooter, #2 2015 honda crf 250 L (Dual sport)
scamp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-12-2014, 09:45 AM   #21
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
Thanks, scamp!! I'm using 6 gauge stranded THHN from the panels to the combiner box, and then 4 gauge from the box down to the batteries. Clearly, this isn't UV resistant wire, so I'm using split wire loom over it, which will maybe make it through the first Arizona summer.

The wire loom will look good for about the first week, so I'm very open to other ideas about UV protection for the wire. I thought about CPVC conduit with a coat of Krylon fusion - or even exterior house paint.

Ideas? Anybody? At this point, I'd have to either re-terminate the end connections :'( or use some kind of split loom. Maybe I'll slap a coat of Krylon fusion over the plastic wire loom to see if that helps out a bit.... New info: Krylon Fusion clear gloss supposedly offers UV protection

I did pick up my 4 gauge wire last night at Homey D ($.90 /ft) plus some 16 ga by 10 conductor sprinkler wire for the voltage sensing leads and the relay +12V control wire.

The relay de-energized state will be the parallel panel connection. Seemed to me like "bullet-proof" (as in shade not affecting it) and "de-energized" went together well.
__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2014, 07:59 AM   #22
Rivet Master
 
carl2591's Avatar
 
2005 31' Classic
Garner, , North Carolina
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 775
Quote:
Originally Posted by drboyd View Post
Good idea, Carl! The ring connectors I'm using at the relay with the 6 gauge are standard size yellow with the insulation removed, then opened, crimped and soldered with heat shrink to re-insulate. If I can't get that to work with the size 4 wires going down to the batteries, I'll try your copper tubing plan!!

Thanks!!
thanks for the shoutout.. it was not my idea.. actually happened to see this on youtube when looking for something else.. the guy was showing how you smash then end of a tube of copper about 1/2" or so down, hold tube down on wooden board to drill hole in flat end, sorta drag the square flat end around on a bit of cement to get to rounded off or use raspy file, use a tubing cutter to get correct length for wire to slide into and cut off.

I though it was genuis for sure and a good cheap way to get copper connectors..

have fun and don't smack the thumb..
__________________
Carl, Raleigh NC
2-24-16 got a 2005 Classic 31D
Timeshare owner/user since '99
TUG2.net check it out for good rental deals
2003 F-250 SD, CC, 7.3L PowerStroke
WBCCI#1691, Piedmont Unit #161, Region #3
carl2591 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2014, 05:43 PM   #23
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
I got a bunch more done this weekend... We'll be busy for three or four hours, but then I'll get some photos and narrative up.

Hopefully, next weekend should get most of it working...
__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2014, 07:40 PM   #24
Rivet Master
 
aquinob's Avatar
 
1973 27' Overlander
Portsmouth , Virginia
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 776
Quote:
Originally Posted by drboyd View Post
First of all, a big public THANKS! to aquinob! I did have a bad solder connection. I owe you a beer, amigo!

Second,


In other news, my favorite new toy is a butane soldering iron from Home Depot. Trust me - if you're trying to solder 6 gauge copper, it's between that and a Big Soldering Gun - and this is a bunch cheaper. By the way, forget the reviews. Mine lit off the very first time and worked perfectly.

Seriously, thanks for busting my chops on the bad soldering. I can (and will) do better than that.
You're welcome. If I'm ever out in AZ or you're in VA, I'll collect on that. Glad to hear the butane iron worked out. That's one tool I don't have in my arsenal yet.
__________________
Bob

Ongoing adventures at:
http://1973overlander.blogspot.com/
aquinob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-13-2014, 11:38 PM   #25
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
More progress this weekend!

So, the panels are on and so is the combiner/ circuit breaker/ relay box.

The first picture is bending the feet on the mounting legs out a few degrees to match the angle of the roof curve. This setup actually worked decently, much to my surprise.

I know that the 3M tape really will hold the panels on just fine. However, I decided against expert advice and went with the rivnuts.

The next shot is one of the 1/4-20 Stainless Steel rivnuts set in the roof sheet metal. Anyone familiar with those wonderful Harbor Freight tools will be shocked - I tell you, shocked!! - to hear that my HF rivnut setter struggled with these rivets. Struggled, in fact, to the point where I had to squeeze the rivet setter tool handle with a big pair of water pump pliers to get the rivets to seat properly. It did not, however, break in the process, amazingly enough.

The awning gave me the warm fuzzies about not letting the panel on that side slide off the roof. There is nothing on the street side, however, to prevent that panel from sliding off, and my paranoia took over and resulted in the strap to help out. Turns out it didn't even try to escape, but the strap did make me feel better.

The panels and the combiner box are mounted, and the interconnecting wires are run in the next shot. The wires will be covered with wire loom, which itself with be painted with clear Krylon Fusion for UV resistance. The combiner box is big, and it stands out too much painted all white like this. At least the sides will be repainted silver, in a probably vain attempt to get it to be less sore thumb conspicuous.

The absolute most frustrating part was the next step - running the two 4 ga wires down the refrigerator vent. I have no idea what's going on in there, but I'm surprised that any heat gets out. Seriously, this took me like an hour per wire. Just ridiculous, and I'm sure there's an easier way to do it. If you're trying this, just keep on trying, and about the time that you're seriously considering breaking out the sawzall to see what the heck is going on inside that vent, you'll finally get it.

Those wires are run, but they're just tied off up on the roof and coiled inside the fridge access.

My work schedule gives me Friday, Saturday and Sunday off next weekend, so I'm hoping to get it finished, except for maybe the additional battery box and battery.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	20140412_092117.jpg
Views:	133
Size:	383.3 KB
ID:	209655   Click image for larger version

Name:	20140412_095434.jpg
Views:	134
Size:	236.2 KB
ID:	209657  

Click image for larger version

Name:	20140412_111141.jpg
Views:	126
Size:	311.3 KB
ID:	209658   Click image for larger version

Name:	20140412_125037.jpg
Views:	136
Size:	292.3 KB
ID:	209659  

Click image for larger version

Name:	20140412_160539.jpg
Views:	142
Size:	274.7 KB
ID:	209661   Click image for larger version

Name:	One does not simply.jpg
Views:	131
Size:	109.8 KB
ID:	209662  

__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2014, 12:27 AM   #26
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
The denouement:

So, I got it about 98% done over Friday and Saturday.

Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20140419_221155.png
Views:	159
Size:	595.5 KB
ID:	210045

I sprayed the wire looms with the Krylon Fusion Clear for the UV protection. (We'll see how well that worked a year from now!)

I ran the cables out through the bottom of the fridge and double-cable-tied them to the gas line. Then up into the Univolt box and finally connected to the charge controller.

Note that the cables are inside fuel hose to protect them from the sharp edges on the way up through the bottom of the coach. (That photo is upside down)

And now it's working!

PS: It does work better if you don't accidentally switch the panel leads. There's probably no need to discuss how I would know that.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20140419_221251.png
Views:	138
Size:	478.6 KB
ID:	210047   Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20140419_221310.png
Views:	122
Size:	367.2 KB
ID:	210048  

Click image for larger version

Name:	ForumRunner_20140419_221321.png
Views:	135
Size:	479.4 KB
ID:	210049  
__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2014, 06:21 AM   #27
Rivet Master
 
aquinob's Avatar
 
1973 27' Overlander
Portsmouth , Virginia
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 776
Very cool. One thought, since it looks like the cables are running from the antenna back down to the rest, what about making a small removable aluminum panel to cover them from the direct UV? You might even be able to rivet some aluminum angle on the sides and then make a flat cover out of sheet aluminum held in with some stainless screws for access to the wiring.

BTW, how much do the panels output in direct sun?
__________________
Bob

Ongoing adventures at:
http://1973overlander.blogspot.com/
aquinob is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2014, 11:17 AM   #28
Rivet Master
 
drboyd's Avatar

 
1978 25' Tradewind
Metro Phoenix , Arizona
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 1,428
Of course, the first thing that happened to the panels was that we had one of our Arizona "rains" which means blowing dust followed by scattered drops half an inch apart, which coated the panels, and then we had some overcast yesterday (for which I was very thankful at the time), but I was like 150 Watts out of them both in parallel.

The series-parallel controller and the voltage tap readings aren't hooked up yet to see what difference the series configuration would make.

I like that I idea about aluminum channel to run the wires!!
__________________

__________________
"Between what matters and what seems to matter, how should the world we know judge wisely?" - E.C. Bentley, Trent's Last Case
drboyd is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Vent lift installation & Astrodome installation jessejane Roof Vents, Skylights & Fans 4 01-10-2014 05:34 PM
Solar Panel Installation 69Overlander Generators & Solar Power 28 03-03-2013 09:18 PM
Solar/Wind DIY experiments outofcontrol Generators & Solar Power 9 03-09-2008 09:13 PM
Solar Installation cactushead 2001 Safari 19 10-21-2002 06:56 PM


Virginia Campgrounds

Reviews provided by




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:41 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.