Panels in the Winter

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jainsw
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by jainsw »

raysun wrote: Thu Dec 16, 2021 9:58 am We were young and dumb. We called Cascade Cement "Powder" because we'd never seen the real stuff.

More than once we'd be tearing down a slope, plant a ski pole, and have it rejected when the tip hit .45 Caliber blue ice under a frosting of white stuff. You'd know a turn was out of the question when the recoil went up through your shoulder.

Fun!
:lol: :lol: :lol:
jainsw
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Joined: Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:54 am
My RE system: My setup is a 48v system and is comprised of the following components:
12-ES190 Evergreen solar panels-pole mount non-auto tracking, 4 220 Volt GE panels fixed mount
12-Hanwha Q Peak 300watt panels
1-Outback FM60 PV Charge controller 60a MPPT, 12-60 vdc. 60a output
1-Outback FM80 PV CC, 80a MPPT
1-Outback VFX3648 3.6kw, 120vac output
1-Mate3s with OpticsRE
1-Outback Hub
1-Outback FNDC
7-SimpliPhi 3.8-48v-75Ah Lithium batteries

Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by jainsw »

JRHill wrote: Thu Dec 16, 2021 11:41 am
raysun wrote: Thu Dec 16, 2021 11:01 am
Another addition to the wall.
What?? No hat?
Heh, I wear a hat of many colors. My point is that when you build in a specific area it can be curious. Things change. Seeing forward is critical. A forester couldn't have helped me. A solar guy, most likely not.

So when you plan your system, if you're not a flat lander in open land, it can create challenges down the road.

Question: for you off gridders, Are you in trees or out in the open? If in the trees, how did you account for them growing and will it be a problem in future times?
We are off grid and in the trees. Thankfully, the south is a significant drop off so those trees are still well under line of sight with the sun from our pole mount array and those on the roof still have clearance after 13 years. Like you, I was thinking in an arid climate, these pond pine and pinons don't grow that fast...but they do grow.
JRHill
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by JRHill »

jainsw wrote: Thu Dec 16, 2021 1:04 pm
JRHill wrote: Thu Dec 16, 2021 9:53 am
raysun wrote: Thu Dec 16, 2021 9:01 am
Ah! Cascade Powder. 😆

The much beloved frozen "Chowder" of our youthful ski seasons.
This is not powder - that would be preferable. It is heavy wet and when compacted turns to an ice rink. That's why I almost couldn't get home with 4". F350 4wd with the back axle locked. I have front and back chains in the box but, eh, its only 4". It doesn't help that the road is rough, made of boulders and has several 25%+ grades that you can't get a run to carry ya through. But it sure helps to keep the traffic down.
Sound like you live on a hill like I do...that 25% grade over boulders gave it away. We still haven't had a decent snow thus far this year. We did, however, have wind with gusts up to 95mph and relieved me of some roofing.
Serious stuff. Still I ask, How did you plan for the future?
raysun
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

In my case, the benefits of a low latitude and subsequent high sun angle on average mitigates the effects of tall trees. That, and living on a lava field. The latter assures tree cover is fairly widely distributed.
Screenshot_20211217-075657_Firefox.jpg
The effect of low sun angle and a couple of trees that partly shade one of two adjacent arrays.
CRJpn
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by CRJpn »

We have used a Snow Pro last 3 years and works fine, but wouldn't do as well in a foot plus of snow!
https://www.roofrake.com/Productpages/snowpro2.asp
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by JRHill »

CRJpn wrote: Mon Jan 03, 2022 1:11 am We have used a Snow Pro last 3 years and works fine, but wouldn't do as well in a foot plus of snow!
https://www.roofrake.com/Productpages/snowpro2.asp
Thanks for the additional tip. We went with a Sno-Joe for this season and its so much lighter than the home made device we used for years. But this year is different as even if the panels were clear there would be nothing to harvest. The overcast and occasional fog is 100% effective in blocking sunlight - even cloud edge solar.

Last week I went through a few years of Optics history and even during these short days we could get 1 to 2 kWh per day. Not this year. And it looks be a year of a BUNCH of snowfall. Its been 5 years since we had 103" through the season. We don't mind the snow. Its beautiful out there and its a given that we'll be running the generator anyway. But sure does make a fuel/supply/feed run more complex. And then there are the wheel ruts in the trail that fill with melt and freeze repeatedly making the climb up 25+% grades interesting. Going down can be harrowing. But not to worry. If you go off the road you won't end up at the bottom of the canyon cause the trees will stop you. The pickup can be retrieved next spring.
raysun
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

If you go off the road you won't end up at the bottom of the canyon cause the trees will stop you.
I always told my ski students not to worry while tree skiing. It didn't matter how hard you hit 'em, you wouldn't hurt 'em.
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by JRHill »

raysun wrote: Tue Jan 04, 2022 9:06 am
If you go off the road you won't end up at the bottom of the canyon cause the trees will stop you.
I always told my ski students not to worry while tree skiing. It didn't matter how hard you hit 'em, you wouldn't hurt 'em.
Then you have to figure out how to get out of the hole. Esp if you go in upside down like that one guy.
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Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
REC Alpha 440W panels - 2 arrays: each of 4 strings of 2 in series
Honda EU7000is gas fuel generator

Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

JRHill wrote: Tue Jan 04, 2022 9:13 am
raysun wrote: Tue Jan 04, 2022 9:06 am
If you go off the road you won't end up at the bottom of the canyon cause the trees will stop you.
I always told my ski students not to worry while tree skiing. It didn't matter how hard you hit 'em, you wouldn't hurt 'em.
Then you have to figure out how to get out of the hole. Esp if you go in upside down like that one guy.
Tree wells, in the Cascades especially, are a real danger. #1 cause of a rescue turning into a recovery is cardiac arrest (adjunct to suffocation.)
Shadow_Storm56
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by Shadow_Storm56 »

I only ever just use a broom, can only get to the front panels but it gives me 2/3 arrays. I definitely wouldn't use any chemicals on them or spray water at them although that glass is pretty darn tough.
raysun
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Outback IBR3 battery enclosure
REC Alpha 440W panels - 2 arrays: each of 4 strings of 2 in series
Honda EU7000is gas fuel generator

Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

I only ever use 69°F average annual temperature.
Shadow_Storm56
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by Shadow_Storm56 »

raysun wrote: Tue Jan 04, 2022 9:27 am I only ever use 69°F average annual temperature.
That's cheating.... lol
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REC Alpha 440W panels - 2 arrays: each of 4 strings of 2 in series
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

That's planning. 😆

Its 63°F here (and sunny). I'm freezing. Might have to put on socks.
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by Shadow_Storm56 »

raysun wrote: Tue Jan 04, 2022 9:33 am That's planning. 😆

Its 63°F here (and sunny). I'm freezing. Might have to put on socks.
You don't get the crazy humidity though I take it? You probably don't get the fun issues with corrosion there either do you? Water finds it way in everywhere around here with the drastic temperature changes it works it's way in. So all connections are done up as if they will be in water, DC makes this harder lol. Also 63 is actually a bit cool 66-68 is perfect for me
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

We don't get crazy humidity here on the mountain.

No problem with corrosion. Unprotected metal lasts a good 3 years. 😆
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by Shadow_Storm56 »

raysun wrote: Tue Jan 04, 2022 9:54 am We don't get crazy humidity here on the mountain.

No problem with corrosion. Unprotected metal lasts a good 3 years. 😆
I've had cables dissappear.... just a tube of insulation left and copper gone. I'm jelous
drstrip
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by drstrip »

getting back to your original question about thermal expansion -
My panels have been subjected to air temperatures ranging from -43°F to 100°F over the 15 years I've owned them. (Yes, actual temperature, not this sissy "wind chill" nonsense.) I've seen diurnal swings of over 60°F up and back in a 24 hour period. Temperature can swing 20-30° in little over an hour when the sun comes or goes down. I've never seen any evidence of failure from thermal phenomena. The house, on the other hand, pops and snaps like crazy, though again never displaying any signs of failure. Just scares the crap out of guests.
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by JRHill »

It's been a wicked month. First snow of the season was the 2nd week of Dec. We've have 30+ inches since. Snow, rain, sleet, more snow and rain. We got our first solar inputs today for three weeks! So the panel cables haven't been ripped out!
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by drstrip »

JRHill wrote: Fri Jan 07, 2022 11:15 am It's been a wicked month. First snow of the season was the 2nd week of Dec. We've have 30+ inches since. Snow, rain, sleet, more snow and rain. We got our first solar inputs today for three weeks! So the panel cables haven't been ripped out!
is this odd weather for you? You profile does say PNW, after all.

We recently had about 8 days with essentially zero insolation, which might be about the longest we've ever had. The last two days of the storm dropped 14" of snow (light, but not champagne powder). Once the skies cleared the morning temperature dropped to -20°F. Next morning was "only" -12°, then -5°. The skies are about as clear as they can get and the albedo must be near 1.
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by JRHill »

drstrip wrote: Fri Jan 07, 2022 11:33 am is this odd weather for you? You profile does say PNW, after all.
No, not really. Things are on a cycle but can't be predicted in advance. Last time was six years ago. 24" of snow, rain on top and a hard freeze. Then another 24+ on top, rain and another hard freeze. Then warm rain on snow till the low landers flooded. At the end of the season we had 103".

We are approaching that stuff it this year. There are times you can't get out. And no one can get in. We love it because it is security Plus!

Raysun, Calahoula dogs are so smart. The two females drop their butt into the snow a few times before peeing so no splash back. The male? The whole place is at his leisure. Every year is so very different.
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REC Alpha 440W panels - 2 arrays: each of 4 strings of 2 in series
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

Raysun, Calahoula dogs are so smart.
😆

Ours is smarter than me!
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by drstrip »

raysun wrote: Fri Jan 07, 2022 12:12 pm
Raysun, Calahoula dogs are so smart.
😆

Ours is smarter than me!
assuming we're talking about Catahoula Leopard dogs, being smarter than their owners is par for the course. It's the state dog of Louisiana, where my brother used to live. He sent me a picture of a big event (some kind of hunt, I think). So how do you think Cajuns can tell their dogs apart? Spray paint them with a number on their sides!
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by JRHill »

Yes, Catahoula Leopard dogs. One is good. Two is a pack. Three will clear the forest. Ours are fenced in. They have control of 6 acres. And they do control it. And they love people as long as they are seated initially. After 30 minutes they wash your face and want to smell your breath. A cigar will keep them back.

Outside they sing "This land is my land, its not your land..."

And in this weather they LOVE their snow baths. They plop down, legs flailing around and squirming like a disturbed worm. They are clean dogs too. Grooming themselves and each other. The worst they get is a little wet but rarely get dog stinky. They have gotten skunk stinky....
20190708_115836.jpg
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JRHill
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by JRHill »

Today we might hit 2kWk again. Panels are clear and clean except for half of one at the top. Still another 2 weeks before the sun gets to the tree tops at the top of the canyon. It really makes a noticeable difference in generator run time. I have AGS Must Run programmed for 3.25 hours. It's so cool to shut it down at 2.25 hours cause the cycle is done. And that's good. We're snowed in and down to our last 7 gallons of non-ethanol. I hate trying to get a syphon tube into newer rigs. No, we don't run Non-ethanol in the pickups. 36g tanks and non-ethanol at ~$4.50/g and 13mpg. Nope.
Last edited by JRHill on Sat Jan 08, 2022 1:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
raysun
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REC Alpha 440W panels - 2 arrays: each of 4 strings of 2 in series
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Re: Panels in the Winter

Post by raysun »

The big motors don't need E-Free. Their parts can take the E.

Small motors, a different story.
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