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Solar Powered Battery for accessories?

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by Tenzing, Apr 7, 2011.

  1. Apr 7, 2011 at 12:34 AM
    #1
    Tenzing

    Tenzing [OP] Active Member

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    So I'm contemplating how to outfit my truck into a long term expo vehicle that I can live in for long lengths of time. As I've been doing research, I've found some interesting information on solar powered rechargeable batteries.

    My thought was to have a solar panel on top of the camper shell, run down to a battery in the bed. Off the battery I would run a few essentials for comfort, such as heating pad or some way to warm the space, and maybe a laptop charger, light, etc. Not a huge amount of electronics.

    Has anyone else tried this? Is this even feasible? I've searched here and TTORA but came up empty.

    Cheers!
     
  2. Apr 7, 2011 at 7:43 PM
    #2
    NegroTundra

    NegroTundra Well-Known Member

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    I use a little portable Brunton solar panel to charge double A's...can hook a usb, 3.5mm jack into it too. Works good but is much smaller scale than what you speak of. Try this site http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/, somebody there will have probably already done what your thinking. Keep us posted!
     
  3. Apr 7, 2011 at 8:50 PM
    #3
    MrFastLayne

    MrFastLayne Mr SGA

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  4. Apr 17, 2011 at 7:37 PM
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    Erll

    Erll Well-Known Member

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  5. Apr 17, 2011 at 9:00 PM
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    javadoody

    javadoody Active Member

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  6. Apr 18, 2011 at 6:34 AM
    #6
    Erll

    Erll Well-Known Member

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    Here is a pic of the charger laying on my toneau cover. I keep it folded behind my rear seat when not in use. I also use the cig plug adapter to charge the battery when we are camping. I put it in front of the sunshade in the windshield. THis unit will put out 1.2 amps @ 15v or so even on cloudy days. THe best part of the whole setup is the flexible and foldable design, maximum power when you need it, and minimum space when you don't

    IMAG0130.jpg
    IMAG0131.jpg
    IMAG0132.jpg
     
  7. Apr 18, 2011 at 6:37 AM
    #7
    SCFirefighter

    SCFirefighter on idiot patrol ;)

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    Those fold-ups are awesome. Will be adding it to my "oh shit" pack (survival gear).
    Also, to the OP: keep in mind that any kind of electrical heating elements will require insane amounts of current unless there have been advancements made in the way these things work.
    I'm loving this thread!
     
  8. Apr 18, 2011 at 6:59 AM
    #8
    Erll

    Erll Well-Known Member

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    I agree. 20 or 30watts is not a lot of power. I did an inverter install in my wife's minivan to run a coffee pot (i know, i know, excessive) and it was for a keurig (1500watts) . The best way to design an alternitive energy system is to first look at what you want to power and then design the system around this.

    In my previous truck i had a dual battery system with the solar charger to keep the system topped off and provide a decent power source for my low power items. I also use an inverter of about 1500 watts to power my big stuff. Battery capacity plays a big part in this kind of setup.

    In the minivan I have also hooked the blower to a seperate 12 plug and just plug the solar panel into it. This way when its sunny and hot the blower is always blowing on low and keeps the van cool without killing the battery. (again using the panel in front of the sunshade)

    If you ar looking for heat you first must decide the space to be heated, and the amount of time to heat the space (emergency only, or all night in colorado during feburary).
     
  9. Apr 18, 2011 at 7:05 AM
    #9
    brutalguyracing

    brutalguyracing BIG DADDY

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    they look sweet whata they $$$
    agreed...^^^^^
    i use 2 alarm panel batterys 12 lead acid and i keep them in the bed storage pocket and have them wired to a 12 volt outlet i put in the back over the 120volt inverter plug.....
    i use this to charge peoples cell phones and i pods and it runs my boom box for at least 5 days straight camping n tailgating n such......
    i take them out to charge them when im home but i might look into the solor thingys above
     
  10. Apr 18, 2011 at 7:12 AM
    #10
    Erll

    Erll Well-Known Member

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    They are usually not more than 200 or 300. Its still kinda pricey ( my wife still doesn't know what they cost)

    here is powerfilm store front

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/browse.html?ie=UTF8&marketplaceID=ATVPDKIKX0DER&me=A1VOUFSIGRIGBC
     
  11. Apr 18, 2011 at 7:13 AM
    #11
    brutalguyracing

    brutalguyracing BIG DADDY

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  12. Mar 4, 2012 at 10:48 AM
    #12
    jpneely

    jpneely Well-Known Member

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    anyone have anymore news on these? any reviews etc... id like to have one for backpacking/ bugout bag deal. ive read up on a few of the bruunton (sp?) ones but just want some actual user reviews from people here!
     
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