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Old 03-16-2019, 09:00 AM   #1
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Kyle , Texas
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Self Built 200W Portable Solar Kit

Morning All!!
Has anyone here built their own portable solar charging kit?

I'm thinking of a couple of Renogy 100W panels and an MPPT controller (maybe 40A for future permanent installation). Pretty sure you can get hinges, handles and locks off Amazon ()

Any guidance?

Thanks in advance

Neil
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Old 03-16-2019, 01:52 PM   #2
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Oh yes, you can get all kinds of things on Amazon. Just don't be surprised if you find yourself ordering something directly from China occasionally. How technical are you planning to get with your portable system? Is there any solar tracking involved?
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Old 03-16-2019, 02:35 PM   #3
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Starstream....

I don't plan on anything too elaborate, I'm not that smart!!!. I think I just want something functional so I can boondock a little. I've been thinking I'll probably go with a 20A MPPT and if I go permanent, I'll get another controller then.


Neil
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Old 03-16-2019, 03:11 PM   #4
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Morning All!!
Has anyone here built their own portable solar charging kit?

I'm thinking of a couple of Renogy 100W panels and an MPPT controller (maybe 40A for future permanent installation). Pretty sure you can get hinges, handles and locks off Amazon ()

Any guidance?

Thanks in advance

Neil
I built this one for my son's camper. Stowed on the camper and 100 watts available for charging while on the road. Removed for portable site use. Click image for larger version

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Old 03-16-2019, 03:23 PM   #5
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now that I like....

Would you care to share the equipment used please?
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Old 03-16-2019, 03:27 PM   #6
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now that I like....

Would you care to share the equipment used please?
2 X 100 watt renogy panels. Stainless piano hinge and latches (amazon), 50 feet of 6gauge marine stranded duplex wire coiled inside. Trailer is hard wired with 6 gauge and a Morningstar 15 amp controller. Trailer connector yet to be fitted through front streetside wall. Mounting feet and various connectors from AM Solar.
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Old 03-16-2019, 04:38 PM   #7
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Thank You!!!!
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Old 03-16-2019, 05:26 PM   #8
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You will see commercially available portable devices with the charge controller mounted on the panels. It works much better mounted near as possible to the batteries.
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Old 03-16-2019, 06:05 PM   #9
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I have a 100 watt Renogy panel with 25' of extension back to a Bogart controller and monitor. I hook it up directly to the battery each time we go out. I made adjustable legs out of 3/4" pvc for the panel. Very simple and I learned a lot about how solar works relative tommy needs. Works great. I'm getting ready to install every thing as a plug in system but this has worked well for many years.
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Old 03-17-2019, 03:18 AM   #10
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I have a 100 watt Renogy panel with 25' of extension back to a Bogart controller and monitor. I hook it up directly to the battery each time we go out. I made adjustable legs out of 3/4" pvc for the panel. Very simple and I learned a lot about how solar works relative tommy needs. Works great. I'm getting ready to install every thing as a plug in system but this has worked well for many years.
That's the way I ultimately configured mine. It was a commercially available unit but wasn't charging the batteries. I started experimenting with the built in solar charger, starting with rewiring the panels and putting the charger near the batteries. Made an instant improvement. Finally, upgraded to Bogart charger and monitor. That was in our trailer. We are now in an AS Interstate Class B and I have Bogart equipment in this as well. Works great.
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Old 03-17-2019, 07:22 AM   #11
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That's great to know...so the better installation is to have the controller as near as possible to the battery then?
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Old 03-17-2019, 07:40 AM   #12
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That's great to know...so the better installation is to have the controller as near as possible to the battery then?
Yes.
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Old 03-17-2019, 08:12 AM   #13
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There are many days we're certain our smarts are suspect. When shopping on Amazon, if it's not a Prime item, we've learned to check how long it's going to take an item to ship. Over a week & it's being shipped directly from overseas.
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Old 03-17-2019, 02:51 PM   #14
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Solar panels

Bought two 100 watt panels, hinged them together, used window latches to hold closed, added handle,. My wife sewed a cordura bag for storage. I mounted the controller on the back of the panels and 25 feet of solar connecting cord with quick disconnects. I wish it had been 30'. I put pigtails on one battery with the quick disconnects that stick out of the battery door on the front of the trailer. I filed a rounded spot in the vent holes so I could close and lock the door. Mostly the panels travel flat on the floor in front. If I am not going to be using them they get stored in the truck. For adjustable legs I bought a camera tripod at the thrift store for $5. Couldn't buy materials for that. If it is windy I have a cord and a tent stake to prevent any blow overs. of course I have a cable lock for when I am gone.
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