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Author Topic: Arizona 2019!!!  (Read 618 times)

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #25 on: March 04, 2019, 02:07 PM »
All four HQST panels arrived today.  I took each one out of the boxes to inspect for damage, and then put them in the sun and tested the output voltage.  All four read at 21 volts...SWEET!



We have student days this week, so I won't be able to start the install process until next week.

I will have to buy a few things to complete the project, including wire, connectors, adhesive, a waterproof junction box that will mount on the roof, new temperature and voltage sensor leads from Morningstar for our Tristar MPPT charge controller, and some other miscellaneous items...but nothing too expensive.

We'll have the new solar array sorted out, along with our new battery bank, before we leave here on our next trip up to Utah in April.

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline Rickf1985

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  • Posts: 5087
  • Member since: 2013
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1989
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: Chieftain
  • Chassis: Chevy
  • Engine: 454
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #26 on: March 04, 2019, 06:18 PM »
Dang Dude! New panels and a grand worth of new AGM batteries! Business must be REAL good lately!!

Offline LJ-TJ

  • 14 year member
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  • Posts: 2433
  • Member since: 2003
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1975
  • Make: Winnebago
  • Model: D21
  • Chassis: Dodge
  • Engine: 440-3
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2019, 06:34 PM »
WOW! I got to get involved in  the Re Fair business. Or start me a go fund me page. From popper to the kings court. Hm?

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #28 on: March 06, 2019, 09:43 AM »
HA!  The panels were only 100 bucks each, and the quote I got for the 2 Trojan AGM batteries was 140 each.   :P :P :P :P :P

We have a month off after this show until our next Faire in Utah in May...and then almost 2 months off until our next show in Sterling, NY after that.  Without installing a usable solar and battery system in the RV, we would end up spending WAY more money during our off time at RV parks, or spending a fortune on propane for the very inefficient propane Onan generator when boondocking.

That is the way this business works:  Work hard and make a good amount of money during a show...and then have weeks off in between where you have fun, but do a lot of boondocking on a budget. 

Don't worry folks...we are building back up our savings reserve for emergencies all the while.   :D :D :D :D :D

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #29 on: March 06, 2019, 09:48 AM »
So the panels are here, and I ordered the connectors and adhesive needed to install them.  Since this week is student days week, I'll install them next week.

I also ordered a spare tire rim for the Jeep, since we've been traveling without a spare since we got the Jeep a couple of years ago.  We've been lucky so far, but no more relying on just luck after our winter fiasco...lol!

I'll be tinkering with more projects before we leave over the next 4 weeks as well, and I still have to pick up a torque multiplier to keep on hand with the proper sockets...just in case we ever get a flat on the RV (darn lug nuts on this Oshkosh chassis are torqued to around 500 lbs!).

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #30 on: March 06, 2019, 10:13 PM »
I went ahead and ordered the MC4 connectors for the solar panels, and 65 feet of 4 gauge wire (half red, half black), which is what I am going to run from the roof (I'm going to install a waterproof junction box on the roof near the fridge vent), down through the fridge vent, and then over to the charge controller.  I'll be using 10 gauge wire from each panel to the junction box.  I ordered 25 copper crimp battery terminal fittings while I was at it from the same company I ordered the wire from, for 6 bucks (it was 50 bucks for the wire, which was cheaper than anywhere around here for 4 gauge).

So by the end of the week, or the beginning of next week, I'll have all the components I need to install my solar power system.  Sweet!

Kev

Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline tmsnyder

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  • Posts: 495
  • Member since: 2016
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1990
  • Make: Holiday Rambler
  • Model: 30' Aluma-Lite XL
  • Chassis: Chevy P-30
  • Engine: 454
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #31 on: March 07, 2019, 07:34 AM »
Are you connecting the panels in series?  What's your charge controller rated at for max volts input?  Just wondering b/c #4 wire seems awful big.

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #32 on: March 07, 2019, 09:31 AM »
Are you connecting the panels in series?  What's your charge controller rated at for max volts input?  Just wondering b/c #4 wire seems awful big.

I am probably going to hook them up in series, since our charge controller is a Morningstar Tristar MPPT 60, which has a maximum input voltage rating of 150 volts.  With the 4 panels, each putting out around 21 volts each, I will be well within the 150 volt range.  Then again, I might go in parallel, since it is a lot easier to wire them in that way in a junction box.

I know that 4 gauge seems excessive, but not only was I able to get 65 feet of it (half black and half red) for 50 bucks delivered, it will also pretty much eliminate voltage drop, and allow me to add more panels later on down the road if we feel we need more than 400 watts.

https://2n1s7w3qw84d2ysnx3ia2bct-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/02/150V-TS-MPPT-Operators-Manual.pdf

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #33 on: March 08, 2019, 06:34 PM »
Everything is here for the solar project except the wires and copper terminal ends...but they should be here on Monday.  It is supposed to rain Monday and Tuesday, so in between building catapults, I'll get the solar system installed between Wednesday and Friday.

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #34 on: March 13, 2019, 08:13 PM »
So it was WAY too windy today to install the solar panels, so I did some other projects instead.

First, I installed the brand new Smittybilt 9500lb winch on the Jeep Cherokee's winch bumper.  I wasn't going to buy one yet, but it was on a flash sale for 250.00 delivered! 

Then I took off the propane regulator and hose, and brought it all down to the RV dealer to match everything up to buy and install an Extend-A-Stay.  Because it moved the regulator over a good 5 inches, I had to buy a longer new hose as well.  I bought a new regulator while I was at it, some yellow propane teflon tape, and then had to buy a new hose that connects a grill type propane tank to the Extend-A-Stay fitting (I must have left the one I had in the old RV).  I reused the fittings off the old propane regulator, and then checked it all for leaks.  All good!!! 

So for the Extend-A-Stay tee setup, the new regulator, the tape, and both hoses, I walked out of the RV dealer 120.00 poorer.  Not too shabby though for all those parts at a dealer!  I don't think I could have done much better online.

Tomorrow I'll be mounting the solar panels, and then running the wires down to the compartment.  If I can get that much done tomorrow, I'll have plenty of time for everything else we want to do before we leave.

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #35 on: March 14, 2019, 08:43 PM »
The solar panels and mounts are installed on the roof, and the 4 gauge wire is fed down the fridge vent, and coiled up neatly on the porch!

 :D :D :D :D :D

I have to spend all day tomorrow finishing up catapults and ballista for the weekend, so I'll finish the cable routing next week, and wire in the panels and charge controller, etc.

On a side note, the Chemlink M-1 adhesive I used on the solar panel mounting feet was messy...but cleaned up off my hands with just soap and water.  I hope it is as strong as they suggest!  I did use stainless screws on the feet as well though, to play it safe.

I'll try to get around to posting pictures soon!

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

Offline ClydesdaleKevin

  • 11 year member
  • *
  • Posts: 3936
  • Member since: 2005
  • I own: a Motor Home
  • Year: 1995
  • Make: Itasca
  • Model: Suncruiser 32RQ
  • Chassis: Oshkosh
  • Engine: Cummings Turbo Diesel
Re: Arizona 2019!!!
« Reply #36 on: Today at 11:22 AM »
Just three more weeks until we are back on the road...this time to a small Faire in Utah for the month of May.  It is our first time doing that faire, so it should be a fun adventure...especially since we are building stock for the show here in Arizona, so we won't have to build any catapults in Utah.

So I went ahead and ordered a torque multiplier kit off of Amazon for my lug nuts on the RV in case we get a flat...the lug nuts on this Oshkosh chassis are torqued to around 500lbs, so it is a necessity!  50 bucks delivered, and it comes with the necessary sockets...SWEET!  Thanks for the link, Rick!

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07BGQYN9L/ref=ppx_od_dt_b_asin_title_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

The rest of this week, in addition to building catapults, I'll be running the wires the rest of the way to my power compartment, and then tying them into the charge controller, etc.  I'll install the two new batteries either this week, or sometime over the next 2 weeks.

Kev
Kev and Patti, the furry kids, our 98 Cherokee lifted beastie tow vehicle, and our 1995 Itasca Suncruiser Diesel Pusher.

 

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