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Trying out Solar Panels

We are just getting into summer, although you may not think so after the disapointing day today, and it is an ideal time to start your experimentation with Solar Panels. I may have electrical experience in the past but this branch of electrickery is quite new and yet so integral to any technological footprint after an event that it is worthy of spending some time working on.

I’ve looked at my requirements carefully and there are only a few things that I can see a use for that require electrical power.

  • Comms. Hand held radios to longer range comms.
  • Security. CCTV, PIR, Night Vision, Lights and reconnaissance.
  • Fridges and Freezers. Medicines and food.
  • Reference and calculation. Computers and Calculators.
  • Manufacture. Machining small parts for items.
  • Food production. Incubators, aquaponics and irrigation.

Not an exhaustive list but it covers most of my requirements after TSHTF.

To make things easier for myself I have two clear requirments for power collection and distribution.

  1. I want a separate power supply for each device as this gives the benefit of backup as if anything should happen to one of the panels I can use another one as a replacement.
  2. I want a larger system to provide power to the whole homestead for when I am settled in.

Basically, I want it all. I’ll be making sure that I have more than sufficient cover and that I have backups as well.

I’ve already got a couple of smaller panels and these were bought specifically for charging batteries and powering the computer which worked fine. I’ll add to these as I work out the power requirements of the kit.

So first thing first. I have ordered a 120W solar panel with a 20A controller plus a 125AH battery so that I can give this technology a go. First of all I’ll set it up as a battery charging system for 12V and then I’ll plug in some 12V devices and see if it can power them, first with, and then without the battery.

I’m sure I’m in for a few surprises when I start looking at power consumption. I’ll keep you informed on progress.

5 comments to Trying out Solar Panels

  • Northern Raider

    Pictures please as they help us undertand the narrative.

  • Timelord

    Pls include the prices so we can add up the build cost for our own estimates. Thanks, TL.

  • prepper1

    Whilst at the moment it would constitute theft, have a look at some remote located road signs.
    The have small solar panels mounted on top with usually a bulbous base for the post, which I am led to believe contains a storage battery.

    As I said, theft now….. after an event?

    • A lot of the rural Welsh road signs have both a solar panel and a small wind turbine. Yes, right now it is theft n very wrong cos they are just going to replace it with even more of our money. But if the government collapses, don’t they then technically belong to the people?

  • Skean Dhude

    OK. Ill post some pics and put the prices on the next article.

    Prepper1,

    It’s you tax money so is it really theft? 😉 After an event though it is just reclaiming your tax money.

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