Date: 16 October 2021. Adding Renogy and Upgrading Solar Regulator (#4 in series)
living aboard Seaweed for approximately six years I had accumulated
a 75 watt solar panel and an Air-Breeze wind generator. An 800 watt
generator was in my charging system for quite some time too. This
combination allowed me a minimal level of comfort. True decadence
was beyond reach however.
fortunate in that my cooking was done on a propane stove.
Directly across from the stove is one of my
↑ aboard Seaweed.
wanted the ability to power a small cube refrigerator I owned at the
This is the
original reefer ↓ Baby purchased for me all those years ago for
provide minimal comfort at anchor with just one small solar panel.
Because I cooked with propane, this was sufficient. In the
summertime having a way to keep the refrigerator running moved up
the priority list. I needed more solar panels to make that happen.
This is my Morningstar ProStar-30 solar regulator.
I like that this solar regulator displays the
battery voltage in numbers rather than simply colored lights. The
precision makes me happy.
The Morningstar ProStar30 solar regulator was wonderful. It is a
standard version, versus the "better" MPPT solar regulators
available. MPPT's are interesting, and now I do have one. Back then
though it was beyond my means. It takes a while to save up for the
goodies. Details on the differences between the less costly standard
solar regulators and MPPT's can be found in the
(Standard vs. MPPT)
I had an end plan of where I wanted Seaweed to be, I have been able
to eventually have everything I desire, almost! Yes, what I have now
is totally amazing. However please note that this has taken more
than a decade to achieve, and much of it could not have been done
without the help of friends near and far. I truly am blessed.
The two 100 watt Renogy solar panels were installed
on the top of my pilothouse.
Yes, that is my
favorite night heron Buddy. His girlfriend is off to the side aft
near the Air-Breeze wind generator...
Details on the night herons can be
found in my favorite bird book,
Birds of North America.
I continually flog this book because it is excellent. Frankly,
Birds of North America is the best bird book
I have ever seen. A couple weeks ago I again purchased a copy, this
time for my Grand. She likes it too.
The link provided takes you to a page selling this
Golden Guide to Birds of North America. Pick the least expensive
edition, as except for the covers the contents are identical. Older
copies (more than 50 years old) do have glue issues. After half a
century the glue holding the pages to the binding isn't as good as when first manufactured. Aboard
Seaweed I have Golden Guides published in the 1950's. Several of my
Golden Guides came from our 40'er way back when. Frankly they are
the best Bird Books made.
I should get a commission from
Golden Guides, though if you do purchase via my link Amazon does
monthly deposit a bit into my cruising kitty which is rather nice.
Oh, and check
-- the book should be less than $10 unless you opt for brand new.
But I digress...
addition of the solar panels while on the panhandle, I was
up to 275
watts of solar, plus the wind generator. Life was indeed good.
Next I added
a larger a/c powered refrigerator. It is a standard 3.1 cubic foot
under the counter two-door model.
Buddy is standing in the doorway waiting for me to
retrieve "his" hotdogs from the reefer...
is wonderful. Like all things boat however it came with
complications. Making certain I have enough power was the main
problem, especially when days were cloudy.
On sunny days I would be fine. The current (at that time) solar
panel wattage totaled 275, which roughly translates into 90 amps per
day. [watts divided by 3 equals amps per day, roughly, at the 30th
latitude] The new refrigerator required 60aH, which is doable with
the first three panels, especially if there is wind.
Having the ability to keep foods cold increased my
contentment level enormously.
As long as the sun is shining, I have a working reefer. This is a
Having spent years without a
refrigerator of any sort, I can tell you without hesitation that
having one is a mark of civilization. I am SO GLAD that I have one
now, and mine even has a freezer section. Life is becoming more and
more decadent... I am indeed blessed.
At this point life
aboard Seaweed is good. The solar panels provide sufficient power
for the reefer when it is sunny out. In seven years I have achieved
a comfortable life off-grid. I am closing in on a level of decadence
only dreamt about way back when I first bought my home.
Thank you for reading.
What brand of solar panels do you have?
And, what is the total wattage of your solar array?
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Categories: Books, Characters,
Gasoline Generator Added (starting
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