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Possible encapsulation material?

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  • #16
    Last summer I got curious about making dash and motorcycle tank covers from silicone rubber. I bought several caulking tubes of silicone and thinned it with naptha until it would go thru my paint sprayer. It worked pretty well but I had to do things in layers. Spray, wait, spray, wait. The naptha seemed to completely evaporate leaving the silicone the same consistency/texture when cured as if it had come out of the caulking tube, and the mixture was obviously thin enough to pour and level itself.

    Edit Add: Maybe you could put a thin film of the expensive silicone down (or some kind of sprayable insulating coating), then more coats of regular silicone, ...last coat maybe topped of with a laminate made for counters or cabinets.

    Sounds like you have the CS working. ...just contributing ideas.

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    • #17
      Scotch 1602 Insulating Spray
      $30.00

      How about this stuff? Might it protect connections from the acids in silicone?

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      • #18
        Originally posted by crxvfr View Post
        Scotch 1602 Insulating Spray
        $30.00

        How about this stuff? Might it protect connections from the acids in silicone?
        Not to shoot you down, but it's opaque so you could only use it on the backs of the cells, and you'd have to be very careful to keep it off the fronts.
        It would totally rule out complete encapsulation.
        And by the time you payed for the spray and the silicone, you may as well spend $10 more and go with slyguard

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        • #19
          Originally posted by longwolf View Post
          Not to shoot you down, ....(
          Ha, don't worry about that. If I was gonna let myself get shot down, it would have happened a long time ago. They keep telling me no, or I can't, and I keep asking questions.

          Sorry. Only part of my head has been here.
          I've been reading other DIY threads and forgot you want to encapsulate it completely.
          There has to be stuff that will work but not cost TOOOOO much money.

          I used to work with fiberglass. The resin we used was different but, it's all the same. Casting resin comes to mind. I'm not all scientific and all, but maybe they make optical grade casting resin? Learn what you are working with and you can add stuff to make it stiffer, slower curing, etc. Here is a place I like to browse.

          Thomas Registry.

          It sounds like you are doing things properly and know what you are doing, but skimping a little (not to shoot you down )

          I don't know what you are after but it sounds like your smart enough to get it done.

          BTW, one of the drawbacks of casting resin is the same as plexiglass, and I would imagine the same as CS. Long exposure to UV and you'll end up with that cloudy look you got with acetone. I am not sure about the optical grade stuff. Seems like it would be less to reactive to UV than the others. dunno.

          Good luck. I just bought 1kw of the same cells.

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          • #20
            Originally posted by crxvfr View Post
            It sounds like you are doing things properly and know what you are doing,
            Haven't got a clue, that's why I'm asking so many Q's and doing tests.

            Originally posted by crxvfr View Post
            but skimping a little (not to shoot you down )
            Well, if I can save $100 per panel on the three panels, that's $300.
            I had a period last year when that was about all I made in four months.

            Originally posted by crxvfr View Post
            BTW, one of the drawbacks of casting resin is the same as plexiglass, and I would imagine the same as CS. Long exposure to UV and you'll end up with that cloudy look you got with acetone.
            This stuff claims to be be for outdoor use, stays clear and will last 50 years.
            Here's hoping they're not lieing

            Originally posted by crxvfr View Post
            Good luck. I just bought 1kw of the same cells.
            Let me guess, fredv480?
            Good luck with your panels too!

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            • #21
              A little set back.
              I went to Home depot to get them to order the 10 oz tubes of Clear Seal.
              Turns out they discontinued it, you can only get it in the 5.5 oz tubes.
              I was hoping the large tubes would be cheaper, but you can still get the 5.5's at Walmart for $3.97 a tube.

              But $0.72 per oz is still better than what, $2.50 per oz for slyguard?

              I just wonder how many chinamarts I'll have to raid per panel

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              • #22
                Originally posted by longwolf View Post
                Let me guess, fredv480?
                No, but I talked to him too.
                He seems like a righteous dude, so to speak.
                I may buy from him next time.

                I got a $50 discount from somebody else because I had pointed out an error in their listing. 1kw for 392.00 shipped.

                BTW, I was trying to find the CS you speak of.

                By Liquid Nails? You should just about be able to but that (this) stuff by the 5 gallon bucket.
                * Excellent adhesion
                * Paintable
                * Permanently flexible
                * Stays crystal clear
                * Weatherproof seal
                * Will not yellow

                There is a datasheet on that page too.

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                • #23
                  That's the stuff.
                  But we were told they only sell the small tubes now.
                  You should be able to find it in the paint dept's of most walmarts.

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                  • #24
                    bummer. I looked around and did not see it.

                    I found out the insulating varnish comes in clear. By Krylon no less.

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                    • #25
                      Longwolf have you built a solar panel using clear seal to encapsulate it yet? If so how did it turn out. I haven't looked for it in stores but online the 10 oz tube is still available.

                      http://www.google.com/products?hl=en...-8&sa=N&tab=wf

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by cby016 View Post
                        Longwolf have you built a solar panel using clear seal to encapsulate it yet? If so how did it turn out. I haven't looked for it in stores but online the 10 oz tube is still available.

                        http://www.google.com/products?hl=en...-8&sa=N&tab=wf
                        Not yet, I've only been able to work on this on weekends, and only when I have the money for the next set of materials.

                        And, Great find!
                        But I do wonder how old it is, I think I read that it's only got a couple of years worth of shelf life.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by cby016 View Post
                          Longwolf have you built a solar panel using clear seal to encapsulate it yet? If so how did it turn out. I haven't looked for it in stores but online the 10 oz tube is still available.

                          http://www.google.com/products?hl=en...-8&sa=N&tab=wf
                          I've been testing with DAP Clear on some of my cells and polycarbonate plexi. It's working pretty good. To get it as fluid as Sylgard you have to quite a bit of Mineral Spirits. Also, the DAP Clear turns a little cloudy, but when you pour it out it's not bad. Soon, I'm going to mix up a bucket of Liquid Nails Clear Seal and Mineral Spirits.

                          One of the other things that I've come across in my tests is that after mixing the beads of DAP Clear and Mineral spirits you need to let it sit to complete dissolve and let it thin. Also after letting it sit, you can stir it again or you can swirl to get the stuff that settled on the bottom mixed together.

                          One more thing, if you're like me and set the cell on your glass/plexi first, make sure you don't go around all the edges of each cell. When you do that you seal the air in below it, so go around 3 sides of the cell and let it sit to avoid sealing air in. I'm going to do a few more tests on single broken cells to get things figured out.

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by DrRobot View Post
                            I've been testing with DAP Clear on some of my cells and polycarbonate plexi. It's working pretty good...... .
                            Cool, so the mineral spirits isn't harming the plexi?

                            Hopefully your material will clear up as it drys.
                            I didn't see any clouding with the CS.

                            With luck, I'll be doing my pour this coming weekend.

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                            • #29
                              The plexi is perfect.

                              The mixture clears up, I've already tested the mixture on some other busted cells.

                              Good luck!

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                              • #30
                                DrRobot,

                                Just checked the tech sheet on your DAP.
                                http://www.dap.com/docs/tech/00077019t.pdf
                                Sounds a lot like the CS, but with a better heat range.
                                Be sure to use a good respiratory, these materials have some pretty nasty stuff in them.

                                Oh, and be careful, DAP also has a clear silicone and I'll bet it's the type that would eat your cells.

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