Where did you put solar panels? - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > Boat Builders Row > Pacific Seacraft
 Not a Member? 


Like Tree1Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #1  
Old 06-02-2010
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 176
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
stevemac00 is on a distinguished road
Where did you put solar panels?

I have a 31 and we'd like to install a 135W solar panel somewhere. At this time I don't want davits or an arch so those options are eliminated. I'm going to the collective for ideas.

Top of a bimini seems the most logical but I expect a much stronger frame would be required. Please suggest a fabricator or show any images.

Another option is over the dodger but I'm concerned about the boom and mast shadow. I could use the boom brake to hold the boom off to the side at anchor which would help. Here's a picture of a 31 (Kansei). Does the owner read this list? Anyone else have experience with this setup?

__________________
Steve
PSC 31 #84
Talisman
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #2  
Old 06-02-2010
SVCarolena's Avatar
Pearson 303
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Washington, DC
Posts: 411
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 7
SVCarolena is on a distinguished road
You could shore up the bimini frame with some stainless tubing and fittings from Sailrite or another source. We actuall built our own custom bimini frame from one of their kits, cutting the tube to fit with a tubbing cutter and a special wheel for stainless. That allowed us to make a rigid frame with no tiedown straps, and avoided any new deck fittings as the frame attaches to the pushpit. We don't have a solar panel, but the frame is more than rigid enough to support one.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #3  
Old 06-02-2010
teejayevans's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Here
Posts: 165
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 10
teejayevans is on a distinguished road
You can mount it on the rear stanchion, but it would block the swim ladder.
I've got 2 50W mounted on my 31, almost no shadows and they don't get in the way.
Tom
__________________
PS31#111 Cielo Azul
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #4  
Old 06-02-2010
Alannc44's Avatar
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 84
Thanks: 0
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 6
Alannc44 is on a distinguished road
[QUOTE=stevemac00;609159]I have a 31 and we'd like to install a 135W solar panel somewhere. At this time I don't want davits or an arch so those options are eliminated. I'm going to the collective for ideas.

Top of a bimini seems the most logical but I expect a much stronger frame would be required. Please suggest a fabricator or show any images.

Another option is over the dodger but I'm concerned about the boom and mast shadow. I could use the boom brake to hold the boom off to the side at anchor which would help. Here's a picture of a 31 (Kansei). Does the owner read this list? Anyone else have experience with this setup?
QUOTE]

PSC is in the finishing stages of installing my new dodger. I specifically requested a dodger that had a hard surface and was sturdy enough to hold solar panels. This is what they came up with. I'm very happy with it so far. It seems to me that there's plenty of light. Photos are from this past weekend near Bath, NC on Kon Jeni Al (37)
Attached Thumbnails
Where did you put solar panels?-img_3144.jpg   Where did you put solar panels?-img_3153.jpg   Where did you put solar panels?-img_3130.jpg  
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #5  
Old 06-02-2010
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 176
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
stevemac00 is on a distinguished road
Nice. It'd be easy for you to add a panel to the dodger top as well but I'm trying to wrap my head around how well it would work. As you can see in your pictures (which looked like a perfect day) there are shadows on the dodger top so it may not work very well. As I understand it, a shadow on a single cell drops the output dramatically.
__________________
Steve
PSC 31 #84
Talisman
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #6  
Old 06-02-2010
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Colorado
Posts: 115
Thanks: 1
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 8
okapi3 is on a distinguished road
I have an older 31 on which the PO installed a solar panel on the cabin top right in front of the dodger. Obviously it gets frequent shadows. I have been busy with other things and haven't actually paid it much attention so I can't really comment on its performance, but for a trickle charger it's certainly fine.

What I am thinking of doing in the future, though, is mounting a pair of solar panels on the stanchions on either side of the cockpit which hinge and can be deployed and lowered and also angled for optimum performance. At least one panel would always be completely unshaded. I have even heard of some cruisers who put photovoltaics on both surfaces of these overhanging panels so they can collect reflected sun off the water as well as direct sun (I guess those people have pretty deep pockets).

Paul
__________________
Paul Cooper
PSC31 #9 "Wayfarer"
Chesapeake

The secret to sailing is good judgment. Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #7  
Old 06-02-2010
erps's Avatar
the pointy end is the bow
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: La Conner, Washington
Posts: 6,149
Thanks: 2
Thanked 24 Times in 24 Posts
Rep Power: 10
erps will become famous soon enough erps will become famous soon enough
We went through this drill last summer. Too cheap to build or buy an arch over the bimini and I didn't really want the extra weight up there either. I put them on stainless tubes between two stantion posts. Good sun at noon, but we often have one panel shaded in the mornings and afternoons. We can adjust their attitude and then stow them down low as seen in the picture. Compromises, compromises.

__________________
Ray
S.V. Nikko
1983 Fraser 41
La Conner, WA


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


Boating for over 25 years, some of them successfully.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #8  
Old 06-03-2010
hellosailor's Avatar
Plausible Deniability
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 10,559
Thanks: 2
Thanked 83 Times in 81 Posts
Rep Power: 10
hellosailor has a spectacular aura about hellosailor has a spectacular aura about
Steve, a panel with a shadow on it is simply crippled. You're better off doing an installation that won't have shadow problems. Effectively...if you lose 50% output you're going to pay double for your panel, and they aren't cheap to start with, right?

You'll also lose about 10% of power for every 15 degrees that the panel is not angled at the sun. i.e., if the panle is hanging flat on the stanchions and the sun is overhead, it is off by 90 degrees...and water reflections or not, that means you are about 60% down from full power.

So you are right to be planning ahead for the best possible mounting, it is time and money well spent. You might want to take a look at solarstik.com not that I would recommend it for a 31' boat, but to look at the concept. Mounting the panel(s) on a pole that gets them outboard of a stern quarter could be a good solution. They're out of the way, and the primary drawbacks are making sure you don't lose anything overboard, and of course, robust installation. A "radar pole" and a way to mount the panel could be a reasonable compromise though.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #9  
Old 06-03-2010
Maine Sail's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Maine Coast
Posts: 5,296
Thanks: 10
Thanked 117 Times in 85 Posts
Rep Power: 15
Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice Maine Sail is just really nice
I second what HelloSailor said. Even small shadows can really damage output. A friend and I were discussing this one evening on my boat and he did not fully understand. My 85W panel was angled at the setting sun and putting out a steady 4.1 amps. I simply laid a sail tie across a corner of it and watched the output drop to about 1.2 amps. We removed the sail tie and right back up to 4.1..

If you want all the performance you paid for it should be as unshaded as possible..

Ours is as far out the dinghy davits as we can get and still occasionally gets shaded by the radar pole..

__________________
______
-Maine Sail / CS-36T


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.




© Images In Posts Property of Compass Marine Inc.


Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
The Following User Says Thank You to Maine Sail For This Useful Post:
bjung (10-08-2013)
  #10  
Old 06-10-2010
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 60
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 13
samchristo is on a distinguished road
We mounted two 85W panels above the bimini alongside a Aero6Gen wind gen and have been pleased with the results. We aren't interested in moving panels for sun angles - we just jack the boom out with a preventer line to avoid the shadow and forget about it.
You might consider converting to LED lighting, inside and out, to conserve power.
We've spent considerable time on the hook or on moorings in the last couple of years and have yet to run the engine for battery charging.
Good luck with your projects,
Sam
s/v Grace PSC34 #163
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Charging with Solar Power Kevin Jeffrey Gear and Maintenance Articles 0 07-28-2003 08:00 PM
Choosing and Installing Solar Panels Sue & Larry Gear and Maintenance Articles 0 11-06-2000 07:00 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:14 PM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.