I have been reading, researching and waffling back and forth for awhile now on what direction to take for our solar set up.
Back ground - new Rockwood 2109S this year with two 6v 220 a/hr batteries. Previous Chalet A-frame with 2 deep cycle 90 A/hr 12v and a portable 80 Watt folding panel with included controller. This did not give us the reserve power we needed for extended trips.
We dry camp %99 of the summer from May to Oct. Our trips range from 2 days to 10 days. We average 50-60 amp hours of use per 24 hours. Given we are typically in the Canadian Rockies, shaded areas are an issue much of the day. During the day we are not at our TT, we are fishing, biking, hiking and so on. Our furnace in the early season and fall is our biggest power user.
I have settled on 2 100watt panels for now. I am not opposed to 3 for the shade reasons mentioned.
I am looking at two controller/monitor set ups. One a cheaper MPPT with remote monitor, and one the trusty Trimetric SC/TM 2030 combo. A link provided for the Tracer MPPT.
My reasons for the MPPT, being able to run in series and gaining charging amps during peak periods. Less wiring, no shunt required, actually cheaper than the Trimetric setup ($175US for controller, monitor, temp sensor), so overall investment is lower.
My reasons for the Trimetric PWM is its track record, great set up. Also to run the panels parallel. Why? To eliminate a full shut down due to shade like I would get with the panels in series. So my thought is to run two or three panels in parallel and at any time of the day I should be getting full sun on two of them.
My initial thought was the cheap MPPT, its available locally in town. But more I thought about the shade concerns and such is to spend the money on the Trimetric but that is only if my thought of the panels in parallel makes sense.