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Old 10-24-2018, 11:17 AM   #21
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Wwbsite

Can you post the Web URL for Gateway Engineering?
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Old 10-24-2018, 11:25 AM   #22
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Very nice install....what should one expect to pay for a system like that?
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Old 10-24-2018, 11:40 AM   #23
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Southeners Don't Need Battery Warmer, Mostly

Know a fellow with a $50,000 solar system he did himself.
Likes to show off how much e- he gets on cloudy days with his smmart phone.
After doing a bunch of research, I concluded like the op that Lithium was the way to go.
Talking with this engineer friend, asking about what kind of batteries he had, wet mat, I asked his opinion of lithium.
He said they burn in a horrible way.
We do know that you do not want to throw a charge into them at a below operating temperature.
Pretty sophisticated charge controller.
My question, are the batteries under your bed or the wife's?
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Old 10-24-2018, 01:16 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fastrob View Post
Know a fellow with a $50,000 solar system he did himself.
Likes to show off how much e- he gets on cloudy days with his smmart phone.
After doing a bunch of research, I concluded like the op that Lithium was the way to go.
Talking with this engineer friend, asking about what kind of batteries he had, wet mat, I asked his opinion of lithium.
He said they burn in a horrible way.
We do know that you do not want to throw a charge into them at a below operating temperature.
Pretty sophisticated charge controller.
My question, are the batteries under your bed or the wife's?

LiPO4 batteries do not burn. Your friend is misinformed.


-evan
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Old 10-24-2018, 02:51 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by ghaag View Post
My Lithium/Solar upgrade is complete so I thought I would post some pictures in case it might be helpful to someone else thinking about this. I did not do this myself, but spent a bunch of time with the guys that did, my primary takeaway is that I was glad I did not try doing this myself.
Beautiful work on a great system. You are going to love it. I have had a 400AH similar system for almost two years.
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Old 10-24-2018, 03:03 PM   #26
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Just about done with mine.Click image for larger version

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Old 10-24-2018, 03:34 PM   #27
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Wow

And to think that if it got hot I always went to a higher elevation. I still don't have AC in my 63, but I also have Lithium, 7.6 cubic upright 12v dc fridge/freezer and a 160 watt portable solar. No generator though.



Very nice.
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Old 10-24-2018, 09:23 PM   #28
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Just about done with mine.Attachment 326191


Looking great, let me know how it works for you.
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Old 10-24-2018, 09:24 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by mythbuster88 View Post
Really nice upgrade.


Thank you!
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Old 10-24-2018, 09:27 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by ShannonDavis View Post
Can I ask a round about cost not counting the remodel of the bedroom?


I spent about 15k on order from AM Solar and about the same on labor and a few misc parts (I.e. soft start for ac).
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Old 10-24-2018, 09:29 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by jcooper0 View Post
Can you post the Web URL for Gateway Engineering?


http://www.gatewayengineering.us/

Dwight Gary is the owner
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Old 10-24-2018, 09:29 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by gregwall View Post
Beautiful work on a great system. You are going to love it. I have had a 400AH similar system for almost two years.


Thank you!
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Old 10-24-2018, 11:20 PM   #33
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My Lithium/Solar Upgrade is Complete

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghaag View Post
I spent about 15k on order from AM Solar and about the same on labor and a few misc parts (I.e. soft start for ac).


Mine was similar cost. Donít forget to file your IRS form F5695 to get your 30% tax credit back for the install when you file your FY2018 taxes
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Old 10-25-2018, 06:56 AM   #34
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Your installation looks great.
What happens if your inverter fails?
Is there any way to bypass the inverter to be on shore power?
I ask this because this actually happened to a friend of mine on a trip to Alaska this summer.
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Old 10-25-2018, 08:39 AM   #35
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Originally Posted by gblackburn View Post
Your installation looks great.
What happens if your inverter fails?
Is there any way to bypass the inverter to be on shore power?
I ask this because this actually happened to a friend of mine on a trip to Alaska this summer.

Yes there is. Below is a excerpt from a schematic showing the AC wiring/components. It can be accomplished by wiring in a Source/Selector breaker pair with a lockout so only one AC source (Inverter or Shore Power) is used to power the AC Loads. The 62A Source Selector switch is user to select between Generator or Shore Power. The Toggle Source select breaker pair is used to select the Inverter or External AC Source for the loads. Below is a URL to the Toggle Source Selector breaker:
https://www.bluesea.com/products/806...or_120V_AC_50A




Pat
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Old 10-27-2018, 10:36 AM   #36
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The Million Dollar Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghaag View Post
My Lithium/Solar upgrade is complete so I thought I would post some pictures in case it might be helpful to someone else thinking about this. I did not do this myself, but spent a bunch of time with the guys that did, my primary takeaway is that I was glad I did not try doing this myself.

Might you be willing to give a ballpark figure on the total cost here? Also, how much do you think you gained over using two six volt batteries and the same solar setup?!? Thanks!
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Old 10-28-2018, 05:15 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wulfraat View Post
Mine was similar cost. Donít forget to file your IRS form F5695 to get your 30% tax credit back for the install when you file your FY2018 taxes


Thank you for the reminder!
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Old 10-28-2018, 05:26 AM   #38
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Originally Posted by JanMark View Post
Might you be willing to give a ballpark figure on the total cost here? Also, how much do you think you gained over using two six volt batteries and the same solar setup?!? Thanks!

I spent about 30k, but I did a few things extra. Not sure how to give you a comparison on what you asked about, since I had no solar before this. My goal was to be able to dry camp for 4 or 5 days, use microwave some and use ac enough to cool camper down after hot day and not have to run generator. However, I did convert one of my Honda 2000 generators to propane and I carry that along just in case.
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Old 10-28-2018, 08:34 AM   #39
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Very nice install. Thanks for showing how your system can bypass the inverter to use shore power directly because I have been considering this option for my system.
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Old 10-28-2018, 09:24 AM   #40
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My Lithium/Solar Upgrade is Complete

We put in a similar system at AM Solar. Labor was roughly half the cost. The overall installation, parts and all, was roughly $20+K. This was March/April of 2018, so parts prices (especially for panels) have probably gone up since then.
  • 400 AH Victron LiFePO battery bank (2 x 200 AH batteries)
  • 650 watts of solar (6 x 100, 1 x 50) because thatís the most we could fit up there
  • 3000 watt Victron hybrid inverter / charger
  • Victron MPPT 100/50 solar controller
  • Victron BMV-712 Smart
  • Victron CCGX Color Monitor
  • Victron multi-control panel for the inverter
  • Victron BMS for the batteries
  • While they were in there, we had them add a line from the power center to the fridge, because if our Demonic ammonia-based fridge dies we will yank it and replace it with a Vitrifrigo. A Vitrifrigo will pull more DC power to run the compressor, so we needed a heavier gauge wire to support that demand when the time comes.
  • Incredibly neat wiring job with big red switches that let us turn off elements of the system for service or for winter storage, and labels on everything. The wiring job is beautiful, with big fat juicy cables throughout and gorgeous control boards. (It puts Airstream's original rats' nest of "good enough" wiring to absolute shame.)
Stuff we yanked out of the trailer:
  • The original WFCO 1000 watt inverter.
  • The charger that used to live in the power center.
  • The flooded Group 27 batteries that used to live on the tongue. Now we store chocks and Lynx Blox in there.
With this system we were able to camp for a week at Yosemite with no hookups, mostly in the shade, and still come out with batteries at nearly 50 percent. Power demands were fairly low, as nighttime temps were cool but not frigid.

We can also driveway surf with only 15-amp shore power and still run the AC without popping our hostís breaker. To achieve this, the inverter assists from batteries while AC runs. The batteries recharge via solar. Between demand cycles, the batteries also recharge from shore power when AC isnít actively cooling the trailer. The batteries catch up completely again by early in the evening once things have cooled down a bit because sunshine is no longer blasting the trailer.

Just for fun we now travel with the fridge running on AC power instead of propane. When we arrive at camp after a reasonable day of traveling, depending on the amount of sun we get and on outside temps, our batteries are usually at 85-95% because of solar input and charging from the truck. If we know we'll have hookups when we stop, this is a no-brainer. We'd rather run the fridge on solar power than burn propane.

We still have the propane-fired Honda EU2000i we bought before making this upgrade, though we've not needed it since the upgrade. So, that's something we'll leave behind once we have a sticks / bricks location to store it.

Hope that's helpful!
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