Posible starter system

dsc3507dsc3507 Registered Users Posts: 8
I have been doing some research and I really like the concept of the micro-power inverters. They allow you to add a panel at a time and there is no worry about balance due to cell types etc.

So for now I was looking at the following combination -

Sharp NU-U240F1 Solar Panel, 240 watt and Enphase M190-72-240. So for about $1000 I can get something up and running and add-on as I please at about $4/W parts cost.

Has anyone used the Endphase products? One question concern I have is there monitoring system. It seems to link back to their site if there is an internet connected but you can keep it off the net and view a local web page. Does anyone have any privacy concerns with this?

My preference for mounting is on a pole and I see no reason to use metal or cement it in. A good treated 4x4 below frost with gravel tamped around it is a solid mount. This is a solar panel not a satellite dish where you are worried about degrees of movement. I was trying to find some home made mounting schemes on the net. Does anyone have any ideas on this. Perhaps someone sells the mounts that would attach to a 4x4 post.



  • mike95490mike95490 Solar Expert Posts: 8,606 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Re: Posible starter system

    Building engineer said I had to go 10' deep, 24" hole with concrete, around a 8" steel mast. for 15, 200W panels
    Powerfab top of pole PV mount | Listeroid 6/1 w/st5 gen head | XW6048 inverter/chgr | Iota 48V/15A charger | Morningstar 60A MPPT | 48V, 800A NiFe Battery (in series)| 15, Evergreen 205w "12V" PV array on pole | Midnight ePanel | Grundfos 10 SO5-9 with 3 wire Franklin Electric motor (1/2hp 240V 1ph ) on a timer for 3 hr noontime run - Runs off PV ||
    || Midnight Classic 200 | 10, Evergreen 200w in a 160VOC array ||
    || VEC1093 12V Charger | Maha C401 aa/aaa Charger | SureSine | Sunsaver MPPT 15A

    solar: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Solar
    gen: http://tinyurl.com/LMR-Lister ,

  • dsc3507dsc3507 Registered Users Posts: 8
    Re: Posible starter system
    mike90045 wrote: »
    Building engineer said I had to go 10' deep, 24" hole with concrete, around a 8" steel mast. for 15, 200W panels

    I was thinking on the order of two panels max / pole with at most 8' above ground and about 2 1/2' in ground. No building inspector involved!

    10' deep - you must be in the Arctic! How high is the pole?
  • solarvicsolarvic Solar Expert Posts: 1,053 ✭✭✭✭
    Re: Posible starter system

    I picked up a couple satelite dishes that were laying down because the owners were too lazy to dig a deep enough hole. I would think sometime after a storm you might find the panels blowed over and maybe destroyed if you only bury it 2 1/2 ft.. Were you thinking of 2 panels for 1 4x4 or 1 panel per 4x4? I am not an engineer but I think I would bury the 4x4 at a mininum of 4 ft. Here in Pa. I have a couple factory 4 panel racks on 8 ft long pipes with 4 ft in and 4 ft out and my panels still clear the ground a couple ft when they are tilted. No problems yet and they have been thru some preety strong storms and a hurricane. S:Dlarvic
  • dsc3507dsc3507 Registered Users Posts: 8
    Re: Posible starter system

    The depth of the hole is a minor issue. I really think a 4x4 would sheer off before pulling up 2 1/2 feet of earth around here. This is of course dependent on the height of the pole above ground and thus the moment. If it were 12 feet high then maybe it would be a problem. Mine will be less than 7. I think you will find that telephone poles that are 20 feet or more high are surprisingly not that much below ground.

    It seems hard to get DIY answers on this group. Are you all "professional" insallers?

    Anyhow So back the the Enphase original question. Anyone using them?
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 30,037 admin
    Re: Posible starter system

    It is difficult to give a good recommendation because nobody across the Internet can know your soil conditions, the eventual wind loading of your particular array and such...

    From this thread: Large Windmill collapse in NH; AntronX posted this shot:


    Civil engineers make pretty good money doing these calculations.

    Otherwise, this couple of sites may have more information on how to size your post and base:

    www.otherpower.com (DIY wind turbines)
    www.builditsolar.com (lots of solar projects)

    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
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