8 thoughts on “Latest Toy

  1. Would love to see what you do with them. I have a chicken coop with a small solar panel that runs the door. It opens it an hour after dawn and shuts it at dusk. But, the battery keeps running out so I have to plug it into my electric outlet. I think it’s because the solar panel is too small so it never charges the battery enough to begin with. My son thinks it’s the battery not holding enough charge, especially in the winter when it’s cold outside. Anyway, I haven’t spent a lot of time trying to figure it out because it’s so much easier to plug it in to make it work. Then again, it would be nice to have it work as advertised! 🙂

    1. Yea, that’s what kind of got me into having some real solar panels. I had whole bunch of solar pathway lights. They are dim and they don’t last that long. Either the tiny solar panel got fogged up or the battery dies. They simple don’t last.

      So, after I had my first few cheapy Amazon bought 100W solar panels to test, they worked great. More than enough to power the normal 110v path lights for the entire light. So I started making a bigger setup to power my entire home office. 🙂

      This was my first draft with 4x cheapy 100W panel. Not the fancy one in the above picture.

      I don’t have pictures for the final setup yet.

  2. Are you tied into the grid? Or, are you running your home office off grid? I would really love to go off grid. (dreams of homesteading here!)

    I noticed your wiring is really thick too. That’s another thing my son said is wrong with mine, the wires they sent aren’t rated for outdoors or New England winters.

    What did the panels come with? Is there a battery somewhere?

    Sorry to ask so many questions but seeing this gives me new hope that I can get my chicken coop operational without plugging it into my house’s electricity. It has a motion detector for predators approaching from the woods. It is connected to my wireless so I can check the door status and the temperature inside my coop from my phone from anywhere. Also, set to automatic as mentioned above where it opens the door an hour after dawn and closes the door at dusk using a light detector. But I can also operate the door manually from the phone. It’s a great set-up if only the solar panels worked! 🙂

  3. Since it’s DYI, it has to be off grid.

    Yea, you need thick cables since they are DC (instead of AC). I’m in Long Island NY and they survived a couple of years of the weather. It works well. Go to Amazon and search for “Solar PV Cable” and you can see the typical 10AWG cables, and the typical male/female outdoor connectors for solar usage.

    If you need to connect more stuff, you need to buy some “MC4 connectors”, “MC4 Y Branch Connectors” and “RENOGY Solar Panel Connector Assembly Tool”. Go to Amazon and search for them.

    That’s just for the cable part. More to come.

  4. Anyway, to answer your question, the solar panel doesn’t have battery. Each component are separate. You’ll have to buy each component and put them together yourself. It was a great learning experience for me to figure out what is needed and how it supposed to work and all.

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