RV News RVBusiness 2021 Top 10 RVs of the Year, plus 56 additional debuts and must-see units → ×


Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 10-30-2020, 02:37 PM   #1
Mini-Skoolie
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Location: Wasilla Alaska
Posts: 11
Year: 1991
Coachwork: Blue Bird
Chassis: TC2000
Engine: Mechanical 5.9
Rated Cap: 35 Feet
Solar panel mounting

Is there a reason that it seems that everyone mounted their solar panels east west? I am thinking of a 4 panel array and mounting north south in the center so that it does not look like a deck mounted up there and have less forward facing surface. I realize the aerodynamics donít matter as much on a bus.

Another thought is to mount 2 panels all the forward and 2 all the way aft so that if parked with partial shade, you could poke one end out into the sun.

Thoughts?
mhaisten is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2020, 04:30 PM   #2
Bus Crazy
 
Drew Bru's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Minnehaha Co., SD
Posts: 1,158
Year: 1996
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: International
Engine: DT466
Rated Cap: 65
I don't know how much it matters which orientation they're mounted. Seems like most people mount them for efficiency of space. How you're parked will have as much effect on the panels as how their oriented. Mounting them forward and aft might make sense, on the other hand it could make it more likely that at least one pair would be shaded much of the time. It's so hit and miss for us when we're camped anywhere but the desert. Plus there's the trade-off of shade (for keeping cool) vs. sun (for solar production).
__________________
Our Build: https://dazzlingbluebus.wordpress.com/
Drew Bru is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2020, 04:56 PM   #3
Bus Nut
 
dzl_'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2019
Location: California, Bay Area
Posts: 753
Quote:
Originally Posted by mhaisten View Post
Is there a reason that it seems that everyone mounted their solar panels east west? I am thinking of a 4 panel array and mounting north south in the center so that it does not look like a deck mounted up there and have less forward facing surface. I realize the aerodynamics donít matter as much on a bus.

Another thought is to mount 2 panels all the forward and 2 all the way aft so that if parked with partial shade, you could poke one end out into the sun.

Thoughts?

I'm assuming when you say 'east-west' you mean long side of the PV panels across the bus (port-starboard/left-right) and when you say 'north-south' you mean long side of the panels running down the bus (fore-aft/front-rear).


Since cardinal direction matters for PV panels, its probably clearer to avoid using cardinal directions as an analogy for anything else in this context.


As for how they are oriented on the bus, I think this is situational, depends on panel size, and other factors. Orienting front to rear seems like it can achieve a more low profile install with the tradeoff that one side will always be slightly angled away from the sun.


In terms of the geometry the two most common panel sizes are roughly 66" x 40" (60 cell) and 80" x 40" (72 cell)


A bus is what, 90" or 96" across, but maybe 6" to 12" or a bit more of that on either side is steeply sloped.


It seems for those that install panels across (port-starboard) 60 cell panels are the typical choice, whereas with fore-aft install 60 or 72 cell panels are reasonable.


In the end, I think a lot of it comes down to other factors, do you have roof hatches, or vents, a roof deck or roof rack, etc, and how that constrains your arrangement.


I think both are valid options with tradeoffs, I'm partial to lower profile options.
dzl_ is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


» Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:49 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
×