Reputable, Portable Solar Panels?


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gpn

Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2018
Messages
250
I bought some "100 watt mono" flexible panels off ali and I haven't been impressed. Best I got was about 40 watts each when running a few in series to boost voltage into a victron 100/15 controller. Recently one of the panels shorted out a cell and burned through.

I need some lightweight panels in the 200watt range of actual output for some remote setups. Does anyone have any suggestions of something portable? Doesn't necessarily have to be designed to fold up or anything. It just needs to be fairly light and compact. I don't want to stack a bunch of aluminum frame panels in the back of a pickup and bounce around to the final destination.

I bought the "flexible" kind because they were only a few pounds each and nice and thin without the frame.
 

independent

New member
Joined
Nov 6, 2019
Messages
3
Hello,

New user old solar guy. One of my setups is nearly identical to yours.

Basically all the PET based solar panels except the small usb ones from xdragon/allpowers are rubbish. Esp the larger ones.

Had great luck with ETFE flexible panels.Double check cell count as they can have wierd counts. HTH
 

Crimp Daddy

Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2018
Messages
970
Out of curiosity have you compared that 100 watt flexible against a traditional framed 100 watt panel of good quality?

I have some panels that I have tested in ideal conditions in summer and get the full output, but now that I am entering winter, I cant achieve it. All I am trying to say is it might be something related to the testing or environment working against you too. I try to compare a good working panel to others so I can get an idea of how much output is related to environment vs the panel itself.

That said, most of my folding or flex panels are much pickier about the environment and its difficult to achieve the max.

Unfortunately I dont have any recommendations to try and help on the thin flex panels. If there is any way you can accommodate a hard framed panel, that would be my first pick.
 

camthecam

Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2018
Messages
160
I have found a lot of good panels second hand. I even pick them up from the side of the road. 190watts, 215 watts. Might not be 190watts but series them up and doesnt matter if they git stolen.
 

gpn

Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2018
Messages
250
100kwh-hunter said:
One's that are usually sold for mobile homes, caravans or trailers and such?
In the EU we have something called Conrad, perhaps they can deliver to you?
Just some out loud thought, hope this will get you somewhere.

Or a really long shot:
https://www.amperewinkel.nl/beste-t...rloopbaar-daglichtpaneel-zonnepaneel-met-ogen

The site can be directly translated to your own language, and they ship worldwide.

Best

Yikes! 300 Euros?

independent said:
Hello,

New user old solar guy. One of my setups is nearly identical to yours.

Basically all the PET based solar panels except the small usb ones from xdragon/allpowers are rubbish. Esp the larger ones.

Had great luck with ETFE flexible panels.Double check cell count as they can have wierd counts. HTH

Maybe I'll try one of the ETFE panels from Ali and see if it works. What should the cell count be for a "12v panel" with Voc around the low 20s.

CrimpDaddy said:
Out of curiosity have you compared that 100 watt flexible against a traditional framed 100 watt panel of good quality?

I have some panels that I have tested in ideal conditions in summer and get the full output, but now that I am entering winter, I cant achieve it. All I am trying to say is it might be something related to the testing or environment working against you too. I try to compare a good working panel to others so I can get an idea of how much output is related to environment vs the panel itself.

That said, most of my folding or flex panels are much pickier about the environment and its difficult to achieve the max.

Unfortunately I dont have any recommendations to try and help on the thin flex panels. If there is any way you can accommodate a hard framed panel, that would be my first pick.

Well... I have a 305w sunpower in the same spot that I bought for $100 locally. It is obviously huge and NOT portable. But the little charge controller for this pack won't get over 210w since that is where it maxes out the 15amp charge current. The Highest I could get in all 4 seasons was about 120w with all 4 panels in series. 2s2p and so on didn't help boost output. I have some cheap 10ga solar wires for this little portable setup.

camthecam said:
I have found a lot of good panels second hand. I even pick them up from the side of the road. 190watts, 215 watts. Might not be 190watts but series them up and doesnt matter if they git stolen.

Side of the road would be pretty neat. :D
 

100kwh-hunter

Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2019
Messages
776
At the side of the road i see enough of them, usually for camara's to "monitor" traffic.

For the 300 it a complete set?
 

camthecam

Member
Joined
Oct 15, 2018
Messages
160
People upgrade and the new installers chuck out the old ones claiming problems and Australian recycling is a joke so they go to metal recycling maybe. But a lot of places leave them on the side of the road for council to pick up. They never leave the clamps and cables though! I guess stuff in eu and us is a little more sensible. I have used them for skylights. Good luck. Id go hard panel.
 

independent

New member
Joined
Nov 6, 2019
Messages
3
Maybe I'll try one of the ETFE panels from Ali and see if it works. What should the cell count be for a "12v panel" with Voc around the low 20s.

Standard cell count for 12v is 36 cells. 32 cells sometimes. You can also get 44 cells and many more besides. High voltage MPPT just means ganging many panels in series with the same characteristics
 
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