Splitting My Array.. most compact combiner design?

sdKevsdKev Registered Users Posts: 11
Howdy!

I'm adding the last two 70w panels to my little backup system. The array sits over the deck for shading and that means you get to see the guts of it, thats a fairly easy fix.. but the standard combiners are frik'n utility boxes.

I'd like to build something resettable with a low profile 8" x 8" footprint to mount to Unistrut.

When I figure out how to add a sig line, I'll add details of my little system.

Thanks.

Comments

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,005 admin
    Our host has boxes--But I guess you have already looked at those?

    http://www.solar-electric.com/installation-parts-and-equipment/midnite/pvarco.html

    You could also stack a set of DIN Rail breakers in a DIN box or make/modify your own:

    http://www.solar-electric.com/midnite-solar-mnepv-8-amps-circuit-breaker.html

    And add some bus bars for the common connections:

    http://www.solar-electric.com/catalogsearch/result/?q=bus+bar&cat=0

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • sdKevsdKev Registered Users Posts: 11
    Our host has boxes--But I guess you have already looked at those?
    I spoke with Rick about those today... I'm not new to house wiring, updated my main service and several branches on this 60+yo house so I have a few small breaker boxes sitting around. Maybe dress one up to look like a birdhouse would work.

    NAWS has received a couple of my $$, including my Kid, I'm not as green as you may think - just a new poster.

    I have to appreciate many of the systems guys have built here, pretty amazingly cool!
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    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.
  • sdKevsdKev Registered Users Posts: 11
    Two strings of four Siemens 70w panels in series.

    .. I've been trying to figure out how to create a sigline so people have a better understanding of what I'm working with.
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 32,005 admin
    For your signature, click on this link and scroll about 1/2 way down:

    http://forum.solar-electric.com/settings/account

    And click on Edit Post Signature:

    Visible Post Elements Show Signatures
    Show Avatar
    Edit Post Signature

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • sdKevsdKev Registered Users Posts: 11
    Got it, thanks Bill.
  • PhotowhitPhotowhit Solar Expert Posts: 5,650 ✭✭✭✭✭
    sdKev wrote: »
    Two strings of four Siemens 70w panels in series.

    .. I've been trying to figure out how to create a sigline so people have a better understanding of what I'm working with.

    I don't know if you've found your box, but I just saw that Midnite had some MNPV3 boxes with slightly different knock outs that they were selling on the 'garage sale' section of their web site.

    $55 Rain Proof with a Dead front, already set up with buss bars, of course it's 11" x 5" x 4"...might meet your needs better.
    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.
  • sdKevsdKev Registered Users Posts: 11
    I just got the ProSine online today, the Kid 24.8vdc and ProSine dc input match at 24.8 -- I take that as minimal line losses.

    Adding the last two panels requires a bit more hardware..
  • sdKevsdKev Registered Users Posts: 11
    I'm so impressed with this little system - I should have done this years ago.

    After a carpet cleaning, the house was a bit too damp to feel comfortable in, it's coastal and no forced air circulation. I haven't used the furnace in over a year.

    I've been running the little 600w portable oil radiator for a few hours now to dry things out, the bank has finally gotten down to 24v.0, house temp is holding at 70deg.
  • sdKevsdKev Registered Users Posts: 11
    I looked into the QOU breakers but the smallest they have are 10a, spoke with Schneider and they directed me to the Multi 9 for a 6a - DC rated. Merlin Gerin #60107.

    Prices are all over the place but I found a new-old stock industrial liquidator and bought a pair for $28, no tax and free shipping... soon it's back to the build.
  • VicVic Solar Expert Posts: 3,112 ✭✭✭✭
    sdKev,

    You are lucky -- the Square D QO breakers are NOT RATED FOR DC OPERATION FOR BREAKERS SMALLER THAN A 15 Amp rating.

    It is a moot point now, but the SQ D QU Series spec:
    http://ecatalog.squared.com/pubs/Circuit%20Protection/Miniature%20Circuit%20Breakers/QO-QOB%20Circuit%20Breakers/0730CT9801R108.pdf

    FWIW, Vic
    Off Grid - Two systems -- 4 SW+ 5548 Inverters, Surrette 4KS25 1280 AH [email protected], 11.1 KW STC PV, 4X MidNite Classic 150 w/ WBjrs, Beta KID on S-530s, MX-60s, MN Bkrs/Boxes.  25 KVA Polyphase Kubota diesel,  Honda Eu6500isa,  Eu3000is-es, Eu2000,  Eu1000 gensets.  Thanks Wind-Sun for this great Forum.
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