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Old 07-24-2014, 10:20 AM   #43
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2012 25' Flying Cloud
Battle Lake , Minnesota
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Well, just because I wouldn't have an Airstream without solar doesn't mean it's for everybody.

We often travel without the Honda 2000 because it's noisy and a nuisance. Solar makes this possible.

Without calculations to qualify this, when we do use the generator we can run it less and a small one will suffice because the converter does not charge the batteries, we select battery disconnect and the solar charges them.

When in a campground with hookups, the converter is also disconnected (battery disconnect) from the batteries because the solar system charges them perfectly. We have never used our original converter to charge batteries, saving us the cost of replacing it as universally recommended on this forum; and I suspect it will last a long time.

Our Airstream has been parked at home disconnected from shore power for two months. The batteries remain fully charged, we don't have to worry about it with the solar system.

With the cost of generators, gas and maintenance for them, converter replacement and the nuisance and noise of using them during extended travel, a solar install does't seem so expensive. We wouldn't be without it.

Doug and Cheryl
2012 FC RB, Michelin 16, ProPride 1400
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Old 07-24-2014, 10:45 AM   #44
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1958 18' "Footer"
Idyllwild , California
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I agree with SOLAR Panels and also would not want to do without them. I have them permanently mounted on my 1981 Newell Coach (yeah I know also Riveted Aluminum) although they are hard to get to for maintenance and cleaning since I am getting older and don't like being on the roof anymore. On the plus side since I have converted most of the Lights to LED we can go almost indefinitely using the SOLAR Panels providing we don't use heavy loads like a TV or Microwave.
I have seen numerous portable systems that should work very well and have good reputations. Be very careful about wasting your money on "cheap" systems, I have not heard any good about the ones from say Harbor Freight. The Voltage Regulator is also a very important component.

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Old 07-24-2014, 12:50 PM   #45
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Naples, FL , Hood River, OR
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Love Newell Coach!!!! That will be my choice should I ever get another motor home.

Now back to topic. If anyone wants hard data to help in properly sizing a solar/ battery system, just install a Tri Metric battery monitor and you will get actual usage patterns.

This will help you determine how big (or not) to go with any solar charging system you might have under consideration.

Lew Farber
RVIA/RVDA Nationally Certified Master Tech
Master Tech Energy Systems, Inc.
AM Solar Certified Installation Center
Lifeline Batteries**Magnum Inverters
Lew Farber...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician...RVIA Certified Master Tech ...AM Solar Authorized Installation Center...AIRSTREAM Solar & Electrical Specialist...Micro Air 'Easy Start' Sales and Installations
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Old 07-24-2014, 03:05 PM   #46
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Ventura , California
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I like the idea of mounting the hydraulic brake pump on the tongue in the position of the original batteries. When mounting AGM batteries elsewhere, what kind of containers should be used? Should the batteries be vented outside the trailer? I would love some photos of an AGM in trailer installation.
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Old 07-24-2014, 03:09 PM   #47
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By the way, my Airstream air conditioner will run fine with a Yamaha EF2400iSHC. This is similar to the Honda 2,000 in price and size but Yamaha adds a capacitor to kick the max amps up for a few seconds to handle the starting surge of the compressor. My 13,500 a/c unit runs at about 1,500 watts continuously. The Yamaha is rated at 2,000 watts continuous. Just a thought?
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Old 05-20-2015, 05:39 PM   #48
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Watervliet , Michigan
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Does anyone know what the wattage spec is for 'EACH' panel on the 2015 AS factory solar option?

2016 RAM 2500 6.7L Cummins, 4WD, Crew, Rear Air
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Old 05-20-2015, 06:27 PM   #49
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My Yamaha 2400 is significantly larger than my Honda 2000.

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2014 25' Flying Cloud Rear Twin
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Old 02-22-2018, 11:54 AM   #50
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2009 23' Flying Cloud
Phoenix , Arizona
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Seeking Expert Solar Advice for 09cloud, a 23D

Originally Posted by Lucky Tom View Post
When taking what I already know about solar and combining it with knowledge gained from those with RV solar experience I am going "small" with my panels that I attach to the roof. This decision is based on a point somebody made in an earlier thread. They were saying that many times being parked at a site you may have sun only in patches across the roof of your RV. The panels I have tried are 55 watt and measure 24" x 24". These are designed to charge a nominal 24 volt battery but I feed them into a MPPT (Maximum Power Point Tracking) controller in a parallel configuration with each other. This gives me the advantage of MPPT technology and keeps my panels small so the loss from partial shade is reduced. When the voltage input to an MPPT controller is twice that of the battery voltage then you will have roughly double the current into the battery once the DC to DC conversion occurs.

If I see the need for portable panels they will be larger, in the 200 watt per panel and can be placed where the entire panel will be in the sun. These will be controlled by their own charge controller. These will utilize a separate charge controller and will be in series to gain the advantage of lower voltage drop if the distance is great.
I am considering installing 1 or 2, Solarland 70W "long skinny" panels with a Genasun 10.5A MPPT controller for use with my 160 AH AGM battery bank and existing 100W portable solar. I am also planning to upgrade my parallax 7300 to make it a multi-stage PD drop-in lower unit. You seem very knowledgeable. And (like my wife and I) raised huskies, are from AL, have a 2009 23 foot flying cloud. My parents lived in Tuscaloosa. I went to AU - hope that isn't a deal breaker for getting advice With my dual large Maxair vent covers (which I love) and the AC cover possibly blocking solar panels, maybe I should consider a smaller, single panel? Does MPPT help much with multiple panel shading?
2009 Flying Cloud, Anderson Hitch
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Old 02-22-2018, 03:26 PM   #51
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You should definitely look at the AM Solar components on their web site. A 23' Airstream should be able to accept 300-400 watts of SP-100 panels and definitely the Victron 100/30 controller.

It's great stuff!
Lew Farber...ABYC Certified Master Marine Electrician...RVIA Certified Master Tech ...AM Solar Authorized Installation Center...AIRSTREAM Solar & Electrical Specialist...Micro Air 'Easy Start' Sales and Installations
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Old 02-23-2018, 06:53 AM   #52
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2015 23' International
2013 25' FB International
Apache Junction , Arizona
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After removing the crank-up Winegard television antenna and replacing it with their Rayzar round automatic antenna, we had room for five 100 watt AM Solar panels on the roof of our 2015 23D. We also installed two MaxxFans 7000K in place of the stock Fantastic fans and put in a Maxim skylight with white frosted lens. We also added a cell antenna, WiFi Ranger and Sirius/XM antennas to the front of the coach roof along with a Voyager rear camera.

Just takes a bit of layout work.

We installed all of the solar control equipment, new transfer switch for the front power inlet and 300 amp-hour lithium battery under the sofa and dinette seat without loosing any of the original storage space.

WBCCI Life Member 5123, AIR 70341, 4CU, WD9EMC

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2014 31' Classic model 30 twin beds, 50 amp service, 900 watt solar system, Centramatics, Dill TPMS, disc brakes, 16" tires & wheels
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