thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
Hi im new to this whole wind/solar power stuff, I've seen that canadian Tire was selling the Blue planet wind turbines. Now whats everyones thoughts on these? their priced at 240 bucks (reg 799). Im mostly interested in lowing my power bill, cause the numbers keep rising lol. Anyways would this be a good starter that could pay for itself and then some? or is this a complete waste of time, Thanks
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Comments

  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,433 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    No $300 wind turbine is going to do anything but lighten your wallet. Most small scale wind is really not very successful. Do a search here in this site for some more info.

    If you really wish to older your bill, do al path conservation you can, CFL, LED bulbs, energy star appliances etc will pay off way better than some small scale wind.

    Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.

    Welcome tot he forum, and good luck,

    Tony
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,019 admin
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Here is my "standard" wind turbine post:
    BB. wrote: »
    Add links about wind power:

    Wind Power Links
    www.otherpower.com (good forum for DIY Wind Power)
    Hugh Piggott - Scoraig Wind Electric site for tons of info (from mike90045)
    www.greenpowertalk.org (added from "russ"--Like here but more wind/less solar)
    Small windpower a scam ? Survey says SO
    Truth About Skystream & SWWP
    Windmax HY-2000 2kW Wind Turbine (apparently, some vendors don't sell spare parts--just new turbines. However, the owner, Edward has been very happy with its performance from 2010-2012--BB. 5/31/2012)

    And a general DIY Solar Builder site:

    www.builditsolar.com

    The first 4 links are to sites that support small wind and related projects. The next two links are discussions here about the downsides of small wind. And the last one is a mid-sized Chinese turbine that may not have spare parts available in US, but seems to work OK for one poster here.

    So far, finding a small wind turbine that supplies any useful amount of power on a less than 30 foot tall tower, has been pretty fruitless.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Been there, done that, have the experience. Yes, you CAN save on your power bill, but definitely not with a small wind turbine such as this. How to save? Three words: Conserve, conserve, and finally, conserve.
    Unfortunately most of us in North America were brought up with home energy waste as a normal way of life, and thus view such waste as normal, right and not waste at all. Then we complain about our power bills. It's the North American way. :D
    Seriously, you'd be much further ahead to spend that money on upgrading your fridge and/or freezer to the latest Energy Star units without extras like energy consuming ice makers. Check consumption details before you purchase, and know that a dollar saved today by buying a cheaper appliance, could cost you dearly over the years to come.
    Switch to a front load washer and use the cold water setting. Unless your home is infected with Typhoid Fever or some such disease, there is little or no advantage to washing clothes in hot water. And get, install and use a solar clothes dryer. :D And those 40 minute hot water tank draining showers? Don't even go there!
    Switch lights to CFL, or better yet the latest LEDs, and if there's no one in the room - - turn them off. Is the computer left on 24/7? Many are. A huge waste right there, especially the energy hog full size computers.
    Good luck :D
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,433 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Not to mention, that this is a battery charging turbine system (with an MPPT controller) which requires batteries, so ther is no way to feed it into your grid (simply or legally).

    That said, at $295 it is tempting to buy one for myself to see how much yard ornement it is.

    Tony
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Avoid all renewable energy equipment sold by Canadian Tire. It's poor quality and high priced (when not on sale). I keep looking at their stuff and waiting for it to become something better. So far it hasn't happened.
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    soo im seeing complete waste of time, But if thats so why do people put them on there sheds and such and spend a couple grand if they dont work>?? As for conserving i've switched to the CLF lights, new washer and dryer, installed a Shower, upgraded all wireing in my house, deep freezer is in a cold room so it doesnt run most the time. I conserve when I can, was just hoping a small wind turbine could get it down another 20-30 bucks. So that means small turbines like the wind x or wind breeze arent worth my time. Thanks for the links ill check them out.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Because they don't find out they don't work until after they install them.
    Then they come on here and ask why. You've smartly avoided putting the cart before the horse and asked to begin with, saving yourself a lot of money and aggravation. ;)
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    Because they don't find out they don't work until after they install them.;)

    Whats the reason for this? Not enough wind to generate power? I seen a grapth showing the Air X making 500 watts of power but at 30mph. From what I found on here most wind speeds arent above 10mph? which the Air X just starts to make power at this speed. Am I starting to understand this or am I still off?
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    SYKEKO wrote: »
    Whats the reason for this? Not enough wind to generate power? I seen a grapth showing the Air X making 500 watts of power but at 30mph. From what I found on here most wind speeds arent above 10mph? which the Air X just starts to make power at this speed. Am I starting to understand this or am I still off?

    Exactly so. You really would not want to live somewhere that had steady 30 mph winds.

    There is only so much mechanical power available from wind at any given speed. You can increase the size of the blades to pick up more of this power, but you will never get 100% of it much less convert all of what you do get into electricity. Bigger or more blades means more mass that requires more of that power to turn it, so you get a diminishing return there. And if you design a turbine to pick up as much air power as possible at low speeds it will be under more strain when the wind speed increases.

    So you have more problems: trying to make it strong enough to stand up to high wind speeds without coming apart and without being too massive to pick up low wind speeds or too expensive to buy in the first place. The ideal design to maximize efficiency at 30 mph will be a non-functional lawn ornament at 10 mph, and a design that can make best use of 10 mph winds will fly apart at 30 mph.

    Most of the time this doesn't enter into the practical of it, though. They tend to neglect to tell you it has to be in non-turbulent air of at least 'X' mph. That usually means up a fifty foot pole, not bolted to the roof ridge. When the air is turbulent its energy goes into moving the turbine back and forth trying to keep it in wind rather than spinning it around. They try to solve that problem with VAWT's, but forget the blades on one of those have to turn back in to the wind that's propelling them on the opposite side.

    All too often the low-dollar turbines are just cheaply made. They don't produce according to claims because those claims are either determined under perfect lab conditions or are outright lies. And then they fall apart because they have cheap bearings, poor quality blades, badly wound coils, et cetera.

    My neighbour across the lake has had an AirX (2 blade) up for about 20 years now; it has never produced any usable amount of power. The only reason he doesn't take it down is because it was a lot of work to put it up and he doesn't want to duplicate a wasted effort.
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    All too often the low-dollar turbines are just cheaply made. They don't produce according to claims because those claims are either determined under perfect lab conditions or are outright lies. And then they fall apart because they have cheap bearings, poor quality blades, badly wound coils, et cetera.

    My neighbour across the lake has had an AirX (2 blade) up for about 20 years now; it has never produced any usable amount of power. The only reason he doesn't take it down is because it was a lot of work to put it up and he doesn't want to duplicate a wasted effort.

    THANK YOU, so idealy one would want a turbine built to make 100-200 watts+ at 10mph and to have somthing put in place so it cant reach higher speeds that would make it blow apart. Starting to see the picture here with trying to have your cake and eat it too. As for your neighbour in 20 years he never made any power?? even on the windy days?? Guess this would explain why most of you guys have solar panels and no wind turbines listed after your posts. Thanks again you'll saved me alot of headache and cash.
    Now seeing as you have solar panels how are they working for you? I have 2 solar panels the blue planet 1.5 watt ones that you hook up to car batterys to trickle charge them. nothing like yours but im able to make 7 volts with them on a good day lol.
  • waynefromnscanadawaynefromnscanada Solar Expert Posts: 3,009 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    Exactly so.

    All too often the low-dollar turbines are just cheaply made. They don't produce according to claims because those claims are either determined under perfect lab conditions or are outright lies. And then they fall apart because they have cheap bearings, poor quality blades, badly wound coils, et cetera.

    My neighbour across the lake has had an AirX (2 blade) up for about 20 years now; it has never produced any usable amount of power. The only reason he doesn't take it down is because it was a lot of work to put it up and he doesn't want to duplicate a wasted effort.
    I too was sucked in by retailer hype. I too found out after the fact that the only time it ever produced any useful power at all was for a few hours during those late Fall Tropical Storms that come up the Eastern Seaboard. And it was during those same times I watched helplessly, wondering how much longer the blades would stay attached. Gotta say though, I had the blades painted bright yellow with a black center hub, and the darned thing was real pretty up there against the clear blue sky. Even if it wasn't producing any useable power. Took it down after the second year before it blew apart and killed someone. Where was it installed? On top of a 30 foot tower on the windy side of a lake
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    SYKEKO wrote: »
    THANK YOU, so idealy one would want a turbine built to make 100-200 watts+ at 10mph and to have somthing put in place so it cant reach higher speeds that would make it blow apart. Starting to see the picture here with trying to have your cake and eat it too. As for your neighbour in 20 years he never made any power?? even on the windy days?? Guess this would explain why most of you guys have solar panels and no wind turbines listed after your posts. Thanks again you'll saved me alot of headache and cash.
    Now seeing as you have solar panels how are they working for you? I have 2 solar panels the blue planet 1.5 watt ones that you hook up to car batterys to trickle charge them. nothing like yours but im able to make 7 volts with them on a good day lol.

    Actually they are all supposed to have things like brakes, mechanical furling, and dump loads to keep them from over-speed self-destruction. Unfortunately it all does no good against the sheer mechanical stress that can be placed on them.

    The most successful turbines of any forum member here would be GreenPowerManiac's and ChrisOlsen's. GPM's are small scale, Chris's are large scale. They are both homemade. That's not saying there are no good commercial turbines, but they will be large, expensive, and in need of very specific (and expensive) installation.

    Most of us here are satisfied with the way our solar panels work, both on and off grid. It's a matter of understanding the power requirements ahead of time and knowing the ability of the equipment. Even PV's do not perform to rated specs most of the time: on average they produce about 77% of the nameplate rating. But this is largely predictable and can be accounted for ahead of time as you can get relative data for insolation at your location via PV Watts. It is not 100% accurate, but if enough margin is allowed you can get the results you want. Cost per Watt is lower with PV than wind, and maintenance is practically nil; you might have to wash them off from time to time.

    I have one of those tiny panels too; it keeps the mower battery charged over winter. :D
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    Most of us here are satisfied with the way our solar panels work, both on and off grid. It's a matter of understanding the power requirements ahead of time and knowing the ability of the equipment. Even PV's do not perform to rated specs most of the time: on average they produce about 77% of the nameplate rating. But this is largely predictable and can be accounted for ahead of time as you can get relative data for insolation at your location via PV Watts. It is not 100% accurate, but if enough margin is allowed you can get the results you want. Cost per Watt is lower with PV than wind, and maintenance is practically nil; you might have to wash them off from time to time.
    ok so The power company pull the new meter on yesterday from then til now i've used 23 KWH, so thats 2300watts I use in a 24 hour time frame, so if I buy a 100watt Solar panel, and lets say it puts up 100 watts for the full 24 hours (I know not real) I can expect it to produce 2400 watts of power? In a perfect situation it would power my house? now taking in that we dont have sunlight for 24 hours, and that you said the 77% rating, I can now expect 70 watts for say 8-10 hours which would be 700 watts for a 24 hour time frame? IS my math off on this? Really getting into this, now trying to do some math and find a system that can work for me and save some money.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    You're off by a factor of 10 in the theoretical, as a kilowatt is 1,000 Watts. So if you had a 1000 Watt panel magically producing 100% of its rating 24 hours a day you'd offset your usage.

    What you can really expect is that a 100 Watt panel will put out 77 Watts for four to five hours a day in good sun. That's 385 Watt hours production vs. 23,000 Watt hours consumption. About 1.6% offset. In technical terms this is what is known as "a drop in the bucket".

    To really negate that 23 kW hour production in four hours of good sun you'd need:
    23,000 kW hours / 4 hours = 5750 Watts per hour / 0.77 efficiency = 7468 Watt array.

    Pretty big difference, eh?
  • westbranchwestbranch Solar Expert Posts: 5,183 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    23,000 Wh .... sounds like a conservation program 8) is in order... first, before trying to 'save' with solar PV...
     
    KID #51B  4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM
    CL#29032 FW 2126/ 2073/ 2133 175A E-Panel WBjr, 3 x 4s 140W to 24V 900Ah C&D AGM 
    Cotek ST1500W 24V Inverter,OmniCharge 3024,
    2 x Cisco WRT54GL i/c DD-WRT Rtr & Bridge,
    Eu3/2/1000i Gens, 1680W & E-Panel/WBjr to come, CL #647 asleep
    West Chilcotin, BC, Canada
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    thought I made a mistake there. However at this point im just looking to get started and help lower my bill, which it might not be much but 385 is better then 0 ATM.
    Im looking threw how the power company are increasing the price by 3% this year and for some reason I cant get the math right, they say 13.79 cents per kilowatt-hour. but I've already burnt 23 KWH (as what the meter says) so 13.79x23= 317.17 bucks please tell me im missing something here? again thanks for the spoonfeeding your very helpful.
    On my last bill it said I burnt 1150 KWH is that alot?? I already have power saver stuff in my house I rather not give up my surround sound system lmao

    edit yah i got my math very wrong lol
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,433 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Remember the difference between watts and WATT/HOURS. A 100 watt light bulb, for example will burn 100 watts of power. Keep that light burning for 1 hour and it will have consumed 100 WATT/HOURS of power. WH, or KWH is how we measure consumption, (and meter it to pay for it)

    Any PV system will likely deliver (at best) ~75% of name plate rating, for 4-5 hours per day under ideal conditions. So, a 100 watt panel might look like this 100*.77*5=385 WATT/HOURS per day.

    So, back to the original question, your "600 watt turbine" MIGHT put out ~100 watts, over a good 24 hour period that would be 2400 WH. Don't count on it how ever. Factor in other loses (line loss, inverter loses etc) and that would drop by perhaps half,, assuming reasonable wind. The irony is, if you have enough wind to be useful you have too much for the hardware to handle. The best application for small scal wind systems like this are for marine or remote applications that have very low power requirement to keep battery systems topped up. (sail boats, remote signs, remote monitoring equipment etc) it is one thing to power a small battery bank for a few WH/day as opposed to trying to "save " money on your household power bill.

    The big issue with small scale wind i the hardware must run in a demanding environment,and is subjected to large live loads. Most small turbines cannot handle the loading of gusting, random turbulence from obstructions etc. in the net, you are far better off doing ALL the conservation you can, including solar hot water, then look into PV, and then, if you are in a truly windy environment (which few of us are in reality) a wind system.

    Good luck, and keep in touch,

    Tony
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Cost per kW hour: $0.1379
    Number of kW hours: 23
    Cost for 23 kW hours: 0.1379 * 23 = $3.17
    Why your electric bill is so high: base charge, delivery charge, eco fees, taxes, et cetera charge, et cetera fee, and of course the cost of blah-blah-blah.

    Our electric is ten cents per and we use 16 kW hours a month. The bill still manages to be $40.

    The other thing is, if you are going to try for grid-tie to off-set some cost there is a minimum size inverter you can get. Basically nothing smaller than a 200 Watt micro inverter ($200). Which needs a panel ($300). You've just invested roughly $500 to produce 0.8 kW hours per day for the next 20 years. This works out to a rather frighteningly high cost per kW hour for the power from solar vs. the power from the utility.

    $500 buys 3623 kW hours at the present rate.
    $500 equipment produces (0.8 kW hours per day = 292 kW hours per year * 20 years) 5840 kW hours over the life of the equipment.

    This is based on the flawed premise that the solar will produce at its best every day for 20 years. But of course it won't because it rains sometimes, right?

    With a larger system the production costs improve. With tax incentives/rebates you can offset some of the capital expense. It is even possible to come out ahead under the right circumstances. But small-scale grid-tie is bound to be a money loser. Taking a portion of your usage off grid is even worse, as the set-up costs even more (different inverter, need for batteries and charge controller).

    It's come down a bit from the $1 per kW hour off-grid, $0.50 per grid-tie standard but on the whole it can't compete with most commercial utility rates without some incentive somewhere. I think Photowhit has managed a remarkable $0.26 per kW hour production cost for his system, which is still not on par with your thirteen cents utility rate.

    In short, it may reduce your electric bill but that's not the same thing as saving money.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Standard advice around here: invest in a Kill-A-Watt meter and measure everything you plug in to the wall. You may be surprised at what you find. Parasitic loads eating away tiny amounts while "off", appliances that could be updated, and things you really don't need after all.

    Consider this; our cabin runs on about 1/10 the power your house does, and it doesn't lack for amenities. :D
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    Standard advice around here: invest in a Kill-A-Watt meter and measure everything you plug in to the wall. You may be surprised at what you find. Parasitic loads eating away tiny amounts while "off", appliances that could be updated, and things you really don't need after all.

    Consider this; our cabin runs on about 1/10 the power your house does, and it doesn't lack for amenities. :D

    I was thinking about a meter myself Im thinking my TV/sound system/ flashy flashy flashy might be the problem, that and my fridge is out dated. I do run a 50 watt bulb 24/7 but its for my snakes and I cant get rid of that but im thinking theres savings around. All my light bulbs are CLF's 13 watt bulbs So no savings there, but if your using 10 percent what I use theres something wrong lol. Im gonna start looking around. I'll set a goal to lower myself down below 20 KWH.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    The big difference is probably that our snakes are outside. :D
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    The big difference is probably that our snakes are outside. :D

    cant be doing that they are my angels lmao.. sorry Big snake lover here, Anyways Im gonna say my system is sucking down power and I believe once I get a meter And find some of these things that I can make a change right now im doing 23,000watts My goal is under 20,000 watts but hoping to hit around 18,000 with a couple upgrades. I've found a seller of Solar panels here in NS, they are rated at 245 Watts per panel (soon to have 320watt models) so would make around 188 watts at 5 hours a day so 940 watts a day, which is 5 Percent not bad for one panel.
  • inetdoginetdog Solar Expert Posts: 3,123 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    SYKEKO wrote: »
    cant be doing that they are my angels lmao.. sorry Big snake lover here,

    Maybe in that case you can get them their own solar thermal system with a heat storage tank? As long as they can still move towards or away from it to choose their temperature, it should work.
    SMA SB 3000, old BP panels.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Yes, but; the panel itself does not determine the Watts available as it does not feed the wiring directly. The panel(s) run the inverter, and the inverter's output rating determines the max.
    For example the 245 Watt panel connected to an Enphase 190 micro-inverter will have a maximum output of 190 Watts, even if the panel is capable of 245. Likewise with the 215 Watt version. Although we estimate the panel's average output at (245 * 0.77) 188 Watts that is an average production through the day; it can peak higher than that. If the peak is above the inverter's capacity, the latter is the upper limit.

    It is not unusual to use 245 Watt panels on 215 Watt micro-inverters because it will manage higher output for longer. Here's the long list of compatible panels for their inverters: http://enphase.com/wp-uploads/enphase.com/2011/11/Enphase_Module_Compatibility_List.pdf
    as you can see, higher than inverter Wattage panels are okay. Lower Wattage will work but the peak will inevitably be below the inverter's capacity.

    The same holds true with central inverters: quite often the array will be over-sized by 20% +/- to keep the average daily production up.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Incidentally if you are running a 50 Watt light 24 hours a day that's 1.2 kW hours per day right there. As much as a refrigerator. Do they have thermostatically controlled reptile rocks? :D
  • icarusicarus Solar Expert Posts: 5,433 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    An out dated fridge may use 2-4 times as much power as a new energy star model.

    There are now 4 watt LED bulbs that compete with 13 watt CFLs for out put at a reasonable price,, $20 for a three pack from Costco.

    Tony
  • inetdoginetdog Solar Expert Posts: 3,123 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    icarus wrote: »
    An out dated fridge may use 2-4 times as much power as a new energy star model.

    There are now 4 watt LED bulbs that compete with 13 watt CFLs for out put at a reasonable price,, $20 for a three pack from Costco.

    Tony

    I'm betting that those 4 watt LEDs are competitive with the 13 watt CFLs mostly because the place you are using them wastes a lot of the omnidirectional output from the CFLs, while the LEDs send more of their output in the direction you want. That does not make them any less competitive, but it means that they are not twice or three times as efficient by the conventional measurements.
    SMA SB 3000, old BP panels.
  • SYKEKOSYKEKO Registered Users Posts: 10
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?
    Yes, but; the panel itself does not determine the Watts available as it does not feed the wiring directly. The panel(s) run the inverter, and the inverter's output rating determines the max.
    For example the 245 Watt panel connected to an Enphase 190 micro-inverter will have a maximum output of 190 Watts, even if the panel is capable of 245. Likewise with the 215 Watt version. Although we estimate the panel's average output at (245 * 0.77) 188 Watts that is an average production through the day; it can peak higher than that. If the peak is above the inverter's capacity, the latter is the upper limit..

    SO I just need a good inverter, Im thinking about this as a investment towards the house now, Do I need a charge controller and battery aswell or just a Panel to inverter then into the wall? the panels are 360 ish bucks so say two with a inverter costing 500-1000 bucks? im looking at say 2000 bucks said and done, seem about right? and ill be making 1880 watts on avg, and depending on the inverter I could still add a couple more later on correct?.. seems like a good project
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,657 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    I just read the first couple lines on the 'home' page, and I use a 4watt LED at my entrance way, and in no way is it comparable to a 13 watt CFL. Even in directional use which it is best suited for I don't think there is a huge advantage to the light output of LEDs vs CFLs perhaps a small advantage. ...but they do have other distict advantages, low or no lead, no mercury, last many times longer. They do tend to dim after a while, I have 6watt(I think) that I use at the cabin and I can just read by it from about 3 feet away now, though it seemed easier when I first got it.
    Home system 4000 watt (Evergreen) array standing, with 2 Midnite Classic Lites,  Midnite E-panel, Magnum MS4024, Prosine 1800(now backup) and Exeltech 1100(former backup...lol), 660 ah 24v Forklift battery(now 10 years old). Off grid for 20 years (if I include 8 months on a bicycle).
    - Assorted other systems, pieces and to many panels in the closet to not do more projects.
  • CariboocootCariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭
    Re: thoughts on Blue planets 600watt turbine?

    Basically you're looking at a conventional grid-tie system which is just panel & GT inverter; no batteries or charge controller to provide back-up if the grid goes down.
    All such systems should be done with the proper permits and permission of the utility, whether its one 200 Watt micro-inverter or 10 kW of inverter. There are rules that need to be followed. This is why it's usually more economical to go big with a GT system; the paperwork process is the same regardless of size.

    Since you can't get an inverter in any size you choose the most adaptable way to start small and go big is with the micro-inverters. About the next size up from that is the 700 Watt SMA which is $1000 in itself.

    I'm not sure if you'd be allowed to get permit on a large micro-inverter set-up, do all the wiring, but only install one to begin with and plug in the others later. Probably not.

    Likewise putting in a large central inverter without full panels will not work because they usually require 300 +/- Volts to run which means many panels (10+) just to start it up.

    Spend some time looking through our host's grid-tie inverter section to get a 'feel' for what you'd be dealing with: http://www.solar-electric.com/gridtiesolar.html
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