I seem to have a mental block with math, or at least with numbers. I can feel my brain, walk a way when confronted with numbers. I can’t see, or remember model numbers of equipment, or designators, or whatever.  In math, though I usually understand the equations enough to figure them out, but, I have trouble getting the numbers into the right place in equations.

So today (this week actually) I am working laboriously at figuring out my power (from solar) requirements to bring the magicsprinter one step closer to “expedition vehicle” status, or at least full time vanlife status. (it will never be 4wd unless I find a way to raise the 25k price of conversion). So, “fulltime vanlife” is probably the apex of the magicsprinters identity.)

Digression, sorry….

Lack of power is your dilemma…

Since installing the (residential) refrigeration unit (4.5 ft2 ) I have been forced to try and understand the numbers. I know the fridge draws about 6 Amps (70 watts) at the battery. (my fantastic fan draws at 1 to 3 amps) I don’t know how much my interior lighting draws (cuz I don’t have any, and it is summer in Alaska, so it is light out way later than I need interior lighting.) I can probably safely give it a number of 2 amps (24 watts) But, I am having trouble converting that to the important number of kWh (Kilowatt hours)

I am pretty sure my design needs to work from that number, I have to spend a grand or two to find out.

Here is what I know so far…

  • Monochristaline solar panels. (12v in series to match the input of the charge controller (voltage and wattage)
    • Independent (self-cooling)  mounts (not flexible stickyback)
  • MPPT charge controller
    • Matched to solar panels (V?, W?)
    • Match to battery bank.
      • I Have 2 6V 240Ah wet cells.
      • May want to convert to lithium in future (if I can ever afford it)
      • Would like to optimize the charge control for maximum life of battery
  • Inverter/charger/transfer switch
    • I Probably need around 3Kw Invertor (I currently have 2k)
      • I would like Inversion, charge control (from mains) and automatic transfer (mains to battery) to be automatic, transparent, and perhaps integrated into one unit.
  • Battery
    • Do I need to increase my capacity?
  • Physical plant
    • Heavy gauge wire
    • Good connectors
    • Circuit protection (breakers)
    • Sealed roof penetrations
    • Custom mounts for solar panel(s)

I have been making a materials list but still have not settled on any of the components (The numbers still don’t seem to want to line up in my head)

Stay tuned….

I am pretty sure i need at least 600 watts. BUT, this is a reasonable representation. I would have 2, 300 watt panels probably wired in series (24v, 600W)
My rendition so far…

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