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Wire from PV to inverter.

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  • Wire from PV to inverter.

    So i have 10 300 watt panels on each string. I can get 10 gauge solid copper wire for free. Could I crimp/solder MC4 to solid core 10 Ga. 60 ft. from pv to inverter?

  • #2
    i think you have to use split bolts or splice blocks , since it's outdoors
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount (2) | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
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    • #3
      There are mc4 on the end of each panel now. They are outdoors?

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      • #4
        Originally posted by jagjohn2000 View Post
        There are mc4 on the end of each panel now. They are outdoors?
        MC4 connectors are suitable for outside use. To make a transition from the wire that is attached to the MC4 you would have to use a weatherproof terminal box or insulated terminal splice. Soldering would not be a smart thing to do. Those type of terminations will fail.

        Here is a picture of my weather proof combiner box. I used wires with MC4 connectors on one end and terminal or fuse blocks on the other.

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        • #5
          So I can't just crimp an mc4 to a 60 foot length of wire through conduit to inverter? So mc4 from pv to my crimped mc4 through weathertight fitting in conduit to inverter

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          • #6
            Originally posted by jagjohn2000 View Post
            So I can't just crimp an mc4 to a 60 foot length of wire through conduit to inverter? So mc4 from pv to my crimped mc4 through weathertight fitting in conduit to inverter
            If you have the proper crimping tool for an MC4 connector and the AWG wire. I did not so I just used a #10 wire with the MC4 already connected on one end and ran it through a water tight connector into my j-box to a terminal point. Since it was a short distance it worked for me.

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            • #7
              MC-4 contact.jpgMC-4.jpg The dies for MC-4 crimps are not solid wire friendly, they appear to be intended for stranded wire being the point in the die that imbeds the contact into the strands. If used on solid wire it looks like you wouldn't be able to compress the die fully. MC-4 crimping tool.jpg
              2.2kw Suntech mono, Classic 200, NEW Trace SW4024

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jagjohn2000 View Post
                So I can't just crimp an mc4 to a 60 foot length of wire through conduit to inverter? So mc4 from pv to my crimped mc4 through weathertight fitting in conduit to inverter
                The type of wire you are using affects the answer to this question. At least some length of wire is exposed, from the crimped MC4 connector to the weathertight fitting, which limits you to PV Wire. 60 ft of PV wire is kind of expensive, which is why most choose to transition to THWN-2 in a j-box for the run to the inverter.

                CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by sensij View Post

                  The type of wire you are using affects the answer to this question. At least some length of wire is exposed, from the crimped MC4 connector to the weathertight fitting, which limits you to PV Wire. 60 ft of PV wire is kind of expensive, which is why most choose to transition to THWN-2 in a j-box for the run to the inverter.
                  Based on some of the input from people the weak point was the terminations (or should I say failed connections) that were found by the home owner or AHJ during the inspection. The installer failed to use the proper crimping tool to probably save money and ended up doing a very poor job.

                  IMO wire is the cheapest component to a solar project so why skimp. Do it right the first time or come back in a couple of months and re do it after you put out the fire.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by SunEagle View Post

                    Based on some of the input from people the weak point was the terminations (or should I say failed connections) that were found by the home owner or AHJ during the inspection. The installer failed to use the proper crimping tool to probably save money and ended up doing a very poor job.
                    Yeah, for just a few connections, avoiding the cost of the crimping tool and buying pre-terminated wire seems like an easy call to me. That doesn't really affect the decision to run PV wire all the way to the inverter, or to transition to THWN-2 first though.

                    https://www.amazon.com/Black-Gauge-S...dp/B01D7VBICM/
                    CS6P-260P/SE3000 - http://tiny.cc/ed5ozx

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by sensij View Post

                      Yeah, for just a few connections, avoiding the cost of the crimping tool and buying pre-terminated wire seems like an easy call to me. That doesn't really affect the decision to run PV wire all the way to the inverter, or to transition to THWN-2 first though.

                      https://www.amazon.com/Black-Gauge-S...dp/B01D7VBICM/
                      That's what I did. I have a handful of short jumpers with MC4 connectors on them, then just ran those into a junction box where I used terminal blocks to transition to THWN in conduit.

                      Whether or not the MC4 can be crimped onto solid wire is up to that manufacturer. I doubt many of them test with it, because it's very uncommon.

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