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Old 04-13-2016, 05:45 AM   #21
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Drilling into the rv roof was too much for me. I decided on the sticky feet after considering the options and here's why. Look closely at the mount design. 1. Two piece with nut welded on inside of bracket for easy removal of panel to clean debris or replace diode. 2. Low profile , less likely to catch a branch. I planned to flat mount, going on the roof to tilt is looking for an injury. 3. Larger attachment base than most mounts leaving "wings" to go over with adhesive for further attachment surface of roof. I planned to overlap to compensate for the reduced contact area of vhb tape to dimpled roof. Loctite white marine adhesive was used during install with solid results.
The mounts are very solid and not going anywhere. Pulling on them, I can't imagine any stronger mount from Molly's in foam or luan.
If you still have reservations about adhesive mounting then I suggest you read the Jack Mayer website or look closely at the Am solar website( their mounts use vhb tape plus screws)
I also chose the smaller eclipse panels at Renogy. Small,high output for 100 watts. The decision was partly due to roof layout, partly to minimize size with planned adhesive mounting. They are very solid panels with awesome output. I have 4 panels ( 400 watt). 2 weeks ago turned on the panels at noon and was getting 330 watts flat mounted and I'm using a PWM controller. Last week checked at 3:30 pm and panels produce 200 watt. Highly recommend for flat mount if budget allows.
Good luck with your install.
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Old 04-13-2016, 08:11 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sagecoachdriver View Post
WolfWhistle-Very nice and clean install! Thanks for the photos.
A few of us have started our installs of wiring, controller and cut-offs. Still in the planning stage of panels and mounts. With our Pebbled roof (dimpled) and the thinness of the fiberglass and plywood it was suggested that hollow wall expanding anchors be used. I may use that with a layer of 3M 5200 under the mount and a large dose of Dicor to top it off.
Not sure the tilting mounts will work with larger panels with only the mounts on 2 ends instead of all four. The advantage of the smaller panels is if one gets shaded, the others will still generate power.
Any comments?
S, I've seen an installation of panels on a fiberglass roof using the Well Nuts 05CD spoke of. They look like a very nice way to fasten, when you can't get to the back side.... nice that they can be removed.

There is a company that sells the tiltable mounts and they (well nuts) come with them, but I could't find it... on youtube. I've also see the 3M double sided tape (is that the 5200?)used on aluminum or fiberglass without fasteners of any king that is supposed to be rated for more wind speed that you would ever put it through. I am not sure I like the idea of tape ONLY, but I like 1/2" grade 8 bolts where a zip tie would work.

As far as shade. As you have probably seen, if you were to hold a hand directly in front of only one of the 36 PV sections on a panel, that panel output drops to nil; much like an open in a circuit, but if placed in a low light or even shade the output down a bunch but not completely out.

As I understand it, panels wired in parallel allow each to "stands" on it own, causing you to lose that panel, but if you were to put them in series, such as some of the high voltage setups, one panel shaded effectively kills the whole string. That is a good reason in my book, to go with 36 cell panels in parallel.

There seems to be an advantage of having more smaller panels verses fewer larger panels, but this is also driven by the amount of solar panel friendly space on your roof. Shade from ACs, vents, antennas have to be avoided like the plague.
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Old 04-13-2016, 08:48 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Rich.M View Post
Drilling into the rv roof was too much for me. I decided on the sticky feet after considering the options and here's why. Look closely at the mount design. 1. Two piece with nut welded on inside of bracket for easy removal of panel to clean debris or replace diode. 2. Low profile , less likely to catch a branch. I planned to flat mount, going on the roof to tilt is looking for an injury. 3. Larger attachment base than most mounts leaving "wings" to go over with adhesive for further attachment surface of roof. I planned to overlap to compensate for the reduced contact area of vhb tape to dimpled roof. Loctite white marine adhesive was used during install with solid results.
The mounts are very solid and not going anywhere. Pulling on them, I can't imagine any stronger mount from Molly's in foam or luan.
If you still have reservations about adhesive mounting then I suggest you read the Jack Mayer website or look closely at the Am solar website( their mounts use vhb tape plus screws)
I also chose the smaller eclipse panels at Renogy. Small,high output for 100 watts. The decision was partly due to roof layout, partly to minimize size with planned adhesive mounting. They are very solid panels with awesome output. I have 4 panels ( 400 watt). 2 weeks ago turned on the panels at noon and was getting 330 watts flat mounted and I'm using a PWM controller. Last week checked at 3:30 pm and panels produce 200 watt. Highly recommend for flat mount if budget allows.
Good luck with your install.
I have looked at the sticky feet mounts and the only hesitation I had was using the VHB tape on the dimpled roof. I had planned on making my own similar to the sticky feet and using 3M 5200 adhesive, but after thinking about the time to make them I think I would rather spend the extra few $ and get the sticky feet.

Did you put any adhesive under the mount or just around and on top of it?
I might just take the tape off and use the 5200 under the mount. I have read several responses from Jack Mayer and with his responses feel very comfortable with this method. Any chance you could post a picture of your mounts? Would really appreciate it.
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Old 04-13-2016, 09:42 AM   #24
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I called RV Solar Store and they don't recommend StickyFeet for our Dimpled roof.
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Old 04-13-2016, 10:20 AM   #25
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HopHed, if you need any help with the install let me know. I'm only 15 minutes away.
SCD
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Old 04-13-2016, 10:52 AM   #26
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I placed the adhesive caulk over the feet and around them after the vhb tape fused for 24 hours. I don't advocate vhb tape alone but it did bond very strongly to the dimpled fiberglass. I essentially used the sticky feet as a shortcut to adhesive bond the panels on. The locatite adhesive marine caulk or 3m 5200 over the feet and around the sides hardened into a firm mass. Not soft like dicor. we placed our mounts on the panels and prepped the surface with IPA after cleaning. Removed the protector tape off and lowered to final position. You will not be able to reposition it. Adhesion became firmer overnight. Next day covered the feet with adhesive caulk with generous overlap on roof for surface area. Cured to a firm immobile mass.
The vhb tape and glue is virtually impossible to remove from under mount. I would not put adhesive under mount, the adhesive to residual vhb tape glue may not be as strong as original vhb system.
My Rv is not stored at home so pictures will need to wait until weekend, I still work.
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Old 04-13-2016, 10:58 AM   #27
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Thanks Rich.M, looking forward to the photos. What do you think HopHed?
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Old 04-13-2016, 06:58 PM   #28
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Quote:
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I placed the adhesive caulk over the feet and around them after the vhb tape fused for 24 hours. I don't advocate vhb tape alone but it did bond very strongly to the dimpled fiberglass. I essentially used the sticky feet as a shortcut to adhesive bond the panels on. The locatite adhesive marine caulk or 3m 5200 over the feet and around the sides hardened into a firm mass. Not soft like dicor. we placed our mounts on the panels and prepped the surface with IPA after cleaning. Removed the protector tape off and lowered to final position. You will not be able to reposition it. Adhesion became firmer overnight. Next day covered the feet with adhesive caulk with generous overlap on roof for surface area. Cured to a firm immobile mass.
The vhb tape and glue is virtually impossible to remove from under mount. I would not put adhesive under mount, the adhesive to residual vhb tape glue may not be as strong as original vhb system.
My Rv is not stored at home so pictures will need to wait until weekend, I still work.
Thank you for the info. Seems like a no brainer for me to avoid drilling holes and making the mounts. The extra few dollars will be worth it.

No hurry on the photos and thanks for taking the time to do it. Much appreciated. I understand the still working thing. Me too.

SCD,
I will let you know when ready to install panels. May be a few weeks before I get the panels and mounts. I also want to put on roof with mounts and wired to controller and make sure all is working before I do the permanent mount. Once done there is no going back or changing to a different panel as size may be slightly different. Just want to make 100% sure before final mount.
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Old 04-13-2016, 07:33 PM   #29
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Attachment 104814Had time to swing by Rv for a few photos.
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Old 04-13-2016, 07:36 PM   #30
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Mount with adhesive.
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Old 04-13-2016, 07:39 PM   #31
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Solar controller. Sorry I haven't mastered the multiple photo in one post yet.
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Old 04-13-2016, 07:55 PM   #32
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Mount with adhesive.
Great!

Thank you.
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Old 04-13-2016, 08:25 PM   #33
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Wow! Rich.M Great job! Photos are excellent. I like the way you mounted the panels towards the rear and the wind is deflected by the A/C and fridge vent. HopHed, I think he has solved our problem! and to you Rich.M
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Old 04-14-2016, 12:25 AM   #34
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found similar topic-interesting

Found this today under Sunseeker, same roof. Going to ask about his panel mounting method. He got photos and you can see the thickness of the fiberglass and plywood.http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...-a-105136.html
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Old 04-14-2016, 08:28 AM   #35
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Hi there - got a message from Sagecoach to pop in and weigh in on the paper thin roof. Only one way to do this in my opinion and the opinion of AMsolar:

Here are the rocker mounts used:



Since the VHB tape will be compromised on the corrugated roof - this is the process. VHB application as normal - clean clean clean with a scrub brush and alchohol - set in place.

Drill 1/8 starter hole in through the mount holes. Fill with Dicor, coat screw with Dicor, screw in. Cover entire foot with generous helpings of Dicor over the entire foot - viola - I will share pics when back from the office.

Here is the mount video from AMSolar: AM Solar: Support ‚€” AM Solar

Do not skimp here on the feet - they have never lost a properly installed panel
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Old 04-14-2016, 12:55 PM   #36
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I'm seeing Output numbers that are hard to believe. Either mixing watts, amps, Input output, .... Energy is not free. Regarding output watts - How & where are you reading the output in watts?


FYI some of the output (watts) is lost during the controller conversion from the 17+ volts the solar cells actually "manufacture" down to the 14VDc or so that is finally output by the solar controller for one to use.


As an example, my top of the line 3-wire German solar panels are rated at 384watts yielding a combined final output of 17.6 amps from the controller. At apx 14.4Vdc final controller output, that is 253Watts net. Most (if not all) other manufactured solar panels would be well below 200 watts for comparision - typically 125-175watts.


Read and verify where/when the displays are taken. The only real number is the amount being usably produced. Similiar to engine HP vs hp at the front or rear wheel on a vehicle.
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:09 PM   #37
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I don't know how others are doing what, but if the Trimetric TM2030 sees more charging amps or watts than load, it displays it as a positive number and more load than charge as a negative number. I have options for Ah or Watts. This shows the net of the controller output less the load from things and stuff.

The monitor is taking readings across the shunt with 4 wires, one on Battery 1 at 12+ (it can read voltage only on Battery 2) , one on the battery (-) side of the shunt, and two on the other side of the shunt with the charging source and loads.

When I said I read 20+ volts the other day, that was via a handheld digital meter at the controllers input with battery negative as reference -. I didn't attempt to read input amps on a handheld; I don't have the ability.

I don't know, but would think that when the controller is charging at 14.6 vdc, the current could be what the panel is rated at? Mine are a little over 8 amps each... 24 amps total, less voltage drop?? I haven't had very low batteries and a bright sunny day yet, to see what the current might be at maximum.

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Old 04-14-2016, 04:57 PM   #38
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I thought we were talking about mounts? I have an old photo from my controller display back when I was using 4 x 100 watt flexible Renogy panels. They were replaced on recall no charge with the eclipse panels. Great solar company!. My new panels thru this contoller produced 330 watts at noon on Islamorada, Florida Keys, full sun 2 weeks ago. Didn't take a picture of that one. Panels are wired parallel to rooftop combiner box then 6ga to controller and 6 ga to batteries.
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Old 04-15-2016, 02:23 PM   #39
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Another Similar topic on roof mounting

Saw this one this morning.
http://www.forestriverforums.com/for...ml#post1165709
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Old 04-16-2016, 04:42 PM   #40
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I have an old photo from my controller display back when I was using 4 x 100 watt flexible Renogy panels. My new panels thru this contoller produced 330 watts at noon on Islamorada, Florida Keys, full sun 2 weeks ago. Didn't take a picture of that one. Panels are wired parallel to rooftop combiner box then 6ga to controller and 6 ga to batteries.
I can not speak for that controller, but I think that is the actual ouput of the panels before the controller does its thing to reduce the voltage down to a usuable number (17/19+ to 14Vdc). If I had to guess, that number is around 250 watts +/-.

If you have a real battery monitor gauge, it will give you the "actual usable output" watts/amps after the controller loss (in heat) that makes it to the battery bank. I'll show mine in a month or so when I install it.
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