Aurinco Solar Panels

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Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Timber Cruiser » Sun Feb 06, 2011 3:07 pm

These panels are thin. They can be mounted flush on the deck and they state you can walk on them without damaging them. Anyone installed them on there boat?


The website is aurinco.com

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Sumner
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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Sumner » Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:16 pm

Those sure aren't cheap...$500+ for 50 watts. 50 watts isn't much. If you can afford them they do look nice though,

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Québec 1 » Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:24 pm


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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Sumner » Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:27 pm

Québec 1 wrote:Im going solar this way.
http://www.westmarine.com/webapp/wcs/st ... sNum=10545
Wow those are even more expensive :o . How many are you going to get and what are you going to use them for?

Good luck guys,

Sum

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Québec 1 » Sun Feb 06, 2011 5:07 pm

I'm getting them one at a time. The first one for the led cabin lights,instruments and iphone . When I considered the cost i subtracted the cost of the structure normally necessary , added the fact that the charge controller is automatic solid state and that I will be able to trailer with the solar panels in the boat...easy ..........I'm of course going to look around before I buy and will surely be able to get it cheaper than advertised.
Q1

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by RussMT » Sun Feb 06, 2011 11:00 pm

We've got an 80w panel off the transom arch. Works great and was fairly reasonable. Sumner's setup is even better.

28watts aint much. 80 watts aint much but powers our fridge and minor stuff.


--Russ

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Catigale » Mon Feb 07, 2011 11:31 am

Im reading life data on these panels from 5 years (sounds about right) to people who quote the warranty of 25 years as life (too funny)

This sure seems like an expensive way to get free power IMHO..

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Rick Westlake » Mon Feb 07, 2011 1:14 pm

I looked over the Aurinco panels at the Annapolis boat show last October, and I am quite impressed. They are "ultra-thin" as advertised, and they're made so the wires don't have a protruding "strain relief" like the Sunwize SolCharger panels - another panel that's "step-on strong," or so I gather from the SolCharger brochure. But yes, they are pricey.

By my measurements on Bossa Nova, the 50-watt panel would fit very nicely on the cabin top ahead of the hatch slider, unless you're in the habit of sliding that hatch all the way open. (I'm not; I open it just enough to pull out the 'washboard,' and then keep it slid back. I regard that open hatch as a severe hazard, and an unnecessary one, when you're aboard the boat.) It would go edge-to-edge, almost, on the non-skid area forward of the hatch slider, and at 16" long, it would still let you slide the hatch open about 12" or so.

But 50 watts is not enough to run a fridge, is it? At the same time, it's way more than I'd need to keep up with my GPS. There's also the "all your eggs in one basket" problem of shadows on a big solar panel; even a band of shadow across a solar panel can cut down its output considerably. Might it be better to have more than one panel up there under the boom?

After thinking over my real power needs, I've ordered two 12-watt SolCharger panels from MrSolar.com - they cost me $130 each, plus shipping and MD sales tax. They may not run a fridge, but they'll keep my batteries topped-up and they'll keep up with my GPS power needs. I plan to install them up on the cabin top, just aft of the mast, and they won't take up much room at all (13" fore-aft, about 12" either side of the centerline, as I'll install them). I've figured how to use a short "C" section of PVC pipe (cut lengthwise) as a "riser" under the edge with the strain-relief box; it's the same thing I did to mount my (now cracked and non-functioning) Sunsei solar panel that I'd mounted on the hatch slider, as I posted in http://www.macgregorsailors.com/modt/in ... ?view=1128. I will pull the wiring down through the cabin headliner, and I'm going to try and rig everything so a panel can be replaced if something catastrophic might befall it.

Actually, a real power-hog could mount two more of those Aurinco panels on top of the hatch slider, for a total of 150 watts - that'd keep up with your Engel fridge and your DVD player! But at $550 per panel, $1650 total, I'd rather buy that Wallas stove like Chinook's....

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Sumner » Mon Feb 07, 2011 2:26 pm

Rick Westlake wrote:..Actually, a real power-hog could mount two more of those Aurinco panels on top of the hatch slider, for a total of 150 watts - that'd keep up with your Engel fridge and your DVD player! But at $550 per panel, $1650 total, I'd rather buy that Wallas stove like Chinook's....
One thing take into consideration at what time of the year you are sailing or what latitude. On the first part of our Florida trip we were out in late Nov. and Dec.. I still had to supplement the....

Image

http://purplesagetradingpost.com/sumner ... de-33.html

..... 180 watts with the gen-set and the batteries got charging from the outboard on the 4 days we were using it. This was over a 25 day period. The days were short and the sun was low in the sky. Northern latitudes in the summer have long days, but low sun angles. We had the frig, gps, chart-plotter, anchor light and used the ship's computer 2-4 hours a day and my CPAP machine without running the humidifier on it (thanks for the tip Russ--didn't need it with FL's higher humidity). We ran the....

Image

http://purplesagetradingpost.com/sumner ... de-13.html

....gen set about 1 1/2 hours-2 hours total on the trip so that wasn't bad, but we did have to run it. I think when we go back next month the solar charging will be better than before.

I've mentioned this before, but http://www.solarblvd.com/ has good prices and service and so far I'm very happy with the panels and our charge controller from them. You can't walk on them though. You can get a 40 watt for $135 and a 120 watt for $309 for instance. It also looks like they sell flexible ones, but I haven't looked at those.

I'd consider a 40 watt as a bare minimum unless all that you are trying to do is keep the battery topped off.

Good luck,

Sum

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Highlander » Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:54 pm

Hi Guy's throw your cash my way :o

I bought one of these a few yrs ago 15 watt for about $66. on Sale of course $$ :D :D , never did get the time to install it yet Sunforce
Image

j

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by RussMT » Tue Feb 08, 2011 12:55 pm

Highlander wrote:Hi Guy's throw your cash my way :o

I bought one of these a few yrs ago 15 watt for about $66. on Sale of course $$ :D :D , never did get the time to install it yet Sunforce
Image

j
Good for trickle charging maybe. I'd still want a controller to prevent draining batts.


--Russ

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Highlander » Wed Feb 09, 2011 3:35 am

RussMT wrote:
Highlander wrote:Hi Guy's throw your cash my way :o

I bought one of these a few yrs ago 15 watt for about $66. on Sale of course $$ :D :D , never did get the time to install it yet Sunforce
Image

j
Good for trickle charging maybe. I'd still want a controller to prevent draining batts.


--Russ
Excuse me !
2 Watts is trickle charging ! anything over 15 watts per battery will cook them in a very short time , 80 Watts is nice as long as you have some sort of charge controller , but depending on where you live that 80 Watts is most likely only going to be 30% to 45% efective , Solar power is way to expensive means of substaining hydro , cutting your hydro consumption with other options is the way to go & use a moderate solar system as a secondary back-up !

J

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by esc » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:22 am

The best price I know of on solar panels right now (and for some time now) is http://www.Sunelec.com
They currently advertise $1.63/watt in bulk or $1.84/watt for single panels. Those are BIG (190watt+), 24 volt Panels.
For a reasonably sized 12V panel (50 - 100 watts) it is closer to $2.50/watt.
These are not marine specific panels, they are made with glass and breakage during transport could be an issue.

As for a charge controller..it really depends on the relative size of your panels compared to your batteries.
A "rule of thumb" I've heard before, and my own limited experience bears it out, is that if you compare the actual Watt output of the panels to the amp/hours of your battery bank, you will need 1% to keep it topped off when not in use and anything <=10% does not need a charge controller.

I'm still hoping to come up with a plan for solar/wind power generation on the back of my :macx:
Something along the lines of what Sumner did...but with the addition of a windmill or two.
Last edited by esc on Wed Feb 09, 2011 11:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by Hamin' X » Wed Feb 09, 2011 9:40 am

Highlander wrote:Excuse me !
2 Watts is trickle charging ! anything over 15 watts per battery will cook them in a very short time , 80 Watts is nice as long as you have some sort of charge controller , but depending on where you live that 80 Watts is most likely only going to be 30% to 45% efective , Solar power is way to expensive means of substaining hydro , cutting your hydro consumption with other options is the way to go & use a moderate solar system as a secondary back-up !

J
I think that you are confusing watts for amps, John; a 15 watt panel is only putting out 1 amp at a 15 volt charge. An 80 watt panel, only 5.3 amps. P=IE: Watts = Volts * Amps ~ Amps = Watts/Volts

~Rich

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Re: Aurinco Solar Panels

Post by rwmiller56 » Wed Feb 09, 2011 2:04 pm

Highlander wrote:Hi Guy's throw your cash my way :o

I bought one of these a few yrs ago 15 watt for about $66. on Sale of course $$ :D :D , never did get the time to install it yet Sunforce
Image

j
I have 2 of these exact same Sunforce panels (2 x 15W), with a 6A charge controller, feeding 2 batteries. They work well, and keep my batteries topped off when I have the boat in dry storage, or when it is in the water but no shore power is available.

Roger

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