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  • #16
    Originally posted by chrisski View Post
    For the solar getting stolen, not sure how valid a concern that is. I was worried about my portable panels, but they’ve been fine. For a cabin build, a lot of that stuff is bolted down. If you worry about that stuff disappearing, you may need to just forget the idea of living out there. Could be a valid concern if police reports make that likely. My father in law got decades of enjoyment out of his cabin. There was one incident of teenagers breaking in to have a party during the week when it was not occupied. That didn't ruin all the fun had out there.



    Plz keep in mind there’s a bit left out of this like wiring, mounting, and battery holders. My RV build was 10% to 20% of the cost building a collection of tools. My guess is if you’re not tooled up and have a lot of extra hardware for mounting lying around, could cost close to the estimate.
    Agree.....Funny, I actually thought to my self after totaling up, that this will be more than just the "big" stuff. I have some stuff around and figure I have 20-25 % additional costs.....As for stuff disappearing, well, that sucks...........hopefully, that doesn't happen...

    Thanks everyone.....these forums are really awesome...getting experience from people that have actually done this is worth sooooo much.....

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    • #17
      Originally posted by chrisski View Post
      For the solar getting stolen, not sure how valid a concern that is. I was worried about my portable panels, but they’ve been fine. For a cabin build, a lot of that stuff is bolted down. If you worry about that stuff disappearing, you may need to just forget the idea of living out there. Could be a valid concern if police reports make that likely. My father in law got decades of enjoyment out of his cabin. There was one incident of teenagers breaking in to have a party during the week when it was not occupied. That didn't ruin all the fun had out there.



      Plz keep in mind there’s a bit left out of this like wiring, mounting, and battery holders. My RV build was 10% to 20% of the cost building a collection of tools. My guess is if you’re not tooled up and have a lot of extra hardware for mounting lying around, could cost close to the estimate.
      I also have an RV and thinking of building a smaller portable version, 24V, two 12V batteries and a couple 250W panels. Is that something along the lines you did for the RV? Any advice and/or suggestions, plans, pics, etc. for the RV build would be much appreciated.

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      • #18
        I did build my own cables to lock the portable panels, and I’m glad I did. Most nights I’ve used the RV the wind has picked up and the cables have kept the panels from blowing away. So, for securing the potable panels the cable has been awesome. Of course, the panels have flipped over, so now I put them inside at night. I have stayed at the edge II a mountain near a flat area these times. The wind is calm, but when the sun sets it picks up. There’s not a weather station nearby, and the weaather reports I can read don’t get predict this wind.

        I have four 100 watt panels and these have outperformed the 600 watt panels on my roof. I usually get about 30% more power off the portable panels.

        The roof panels are tiltable, but because the winds have been as much as 25 gusting to 35, I do not tilt the panels. Also, the flat panels on the roof are set to be set up parking so they face south. Sometimes the spot or few won’t let us do that, so obstructions like the vent pipes and AC cause shading.

        I face The portable panels towards the sun two or three times a day. Because true portable panels are tilted and faced at the sun, I also get useful sunshine two hours earlier in the day.

        One other thing about the portable panels is they are not maintenance free like the roof panels. I’ve done some repairs from wind damage. Not to the glass and cells, but I’ve had to rivet a hinge back in and make some repairs to my Anderson power poles I used as connectors.

        If I’ve used 165 AH out of my 220 ah useable in my 440 AH bank and its a sunny day, by 1 pm the panels are charged. When it’s been cloudy, we’ve used around 110 ah, and the panels have still managed to charge the batteries with help from the generator for an hour or two that provides 15 AH. Sunny days, that’s mostly from the portable panels, and cloudy days, mostly from the flat panels, followed by the portable panels, followed by the generator.

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        • #19


          Well, it is getting warmer up here in NY and I plan to start purchasing some equipment. Below is my first stab at a list of equipment I am going to purchase, (thank you MichaelK!). I will build the prototype at my house for proof of concept then disassemble and bring to cabin.


          - (6) 250W grid-tie panels - Santan Solar
          - (8) 6V batteries - I have a friend in the battery business
          - Epever 50A MPPT controller 12/24/36/48V - Amazon
          - Schneider 4048 48V Sine Wave 120/240VAC split-phase inverter - Amazon
          - Transfer Switch, Lugs, heat shrink, cables, etc.

          My next step is to figure out the last item on the list, (Transfer Switch, Lugs, heat shrink, cables, etc.). Is there a site/can someone help me decide all the miscellaneous items that will be required.

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