Solar only arch

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amytom
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Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

In the past I've looked into adding an arch to replace my aft rail, davits, and add more solar. $4k or more became a show stopper.
Then I thought why not just add to what I have already? I bought four of the DMSolar 145w panels from Amazon and will build two bows to simulate an arch above and behind my current rail. Looking at the picture, the grill and bait table will both move forward on their mounts, the mushroom farm will relocate and the 90w panel will either be sold or repurposed somewhere else. The forward bow will attach to the current rail and have the front of the panels two feet above the rail and pushed back far enough to reduce the heat coming from the grill and make room for the dinghy engine to still fit on the rail bracket. The aft bow will mount at the bottom of the steps where the handrails bolt in and will hold the back of the panels over the dinghy back as far as the tape measure in the picture. A few crossbars may be needed for rigidity.

Benefits include more power, dinghy in the shade, current crossbars removed to allow kayak storage on top of davits.

Downside is weight; most of which can be offset by moving our gas cans to a lashing board mounted forward instead of the aft pushpits. I may also replace our air-x and tower with a simple dinghy motor crane to reduce weight and noise.


Where I need help is with what material to make the bows from? 1" SS tube is the first to mind but maybe 1.25 thickwall or maybe aluminum would be better. Also, best place to source it from?

Any thoughts, ideas, criticisms?
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fredandkathy
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by fredandkathy »

Tom,
I have been looking into new davits for some time now. First looked into an arch arrangement which really suit cats, but due to weight and cost, eliminated that. My goal was to be able to lift the dinghy much higher and provide a platform for solar panels without adding much weight. So for my Spring boat project, I think I've narrowed it to Kato Marine, katomarine@comcast.com. the Island davit set I will see them at the boat show in Feb. but have been in contact with them and very helpful. They have never fitted a PDQ according to their records. I think the davits will work nicely, extending out 42" to accomodate the wider RIBs, like mine, and providing the solar panel platform above, while minimizing (not eliminating) the need to drill new holes in the boat. The new holes relate to the stabilizing rails needed for the stern rail. Not a big deal. I'll be able to raise the dinghy an additional 2 ft.

In looking at your pic, I think our issues are similar so you may want to check out kato Marine first before improvising. If you were thinking of extensions longer than 42" to accomodate your longer RIB to get over the scoops, the ones Kato offer will not work probably. BTW, we also lash extra diesel/gas and water forward to distribute the weight on trips and seems to work. I'm still checking out solar panels so if anyone has view, I would appreciate it. I've heard Kyrocera are very good.

Fred

amytom
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

Took a few years of searching and dreaming but we finally got a new arch installed. Still need to sort out the wiring and how many panels to put on it but at least it's installed. Pretty strong too, not a whole lot of movement with my 200 pounds on it.

The next question is how many solar panels to mount. Before the China panel tax went into effect we bought 4 of the 145w DMSolar panels and can mount them all up there inline with the boat or just put two up mounted transverse. Two would be less windage but also 300 watts less power. We also have 6 50 watt panels on the Bimini but they are shaded quite often. We have two controllers, a cheap Trace controller for the 50w panels and a blue sky mppt for the new ones.

Any thoughts or opinions?

Tom
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NautiBits
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by NautiBits »

Tommie Boyieeeeee,

Those are some sexy curves you've got on SV Doghouse!!

I would go with the longitudinal option. Get em' all up there and shade the dingy too! Windage be damned!!!

I would mount a pair of grenade launchers too! Have them pre-loaded with Willy Pete so you can first obscure you location from the marauders, then reload with some nice frag or flechettes. Pin them to their coffins....good fun...then roast some brats on a super Magma...

Fair Winds,

Joe Mc
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jimlong
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by jimlong »

Arch looks good Tom, I would mount all four of them as well. If weight is a factor then you could always add hull extensions later. I know you've got quite a tribe that sails with you, how about adding some extra seating. Fabric hammock style seating comes to mind.
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amytom
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

Thanks Jim

I've thought about adding a bench seat but where would the grenade launchers go then?
Seriously though, I originally had a grill, filet table, and dinghy engine mount on the rail. If I can find another spot for those items then we'll be in business.

I'm open to any ideas...

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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

Arch is mostly populated now. We went with two panels instead of four because it looked more stable. The dinghy will eventually be strapped closer to the aft rail and the hull deck joint; at least off shore. The original davits will be removed as soon as I figure out how to repurpose the holes.
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amytom
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

And yes the wind gen is off angle. I was pulling it off for new bearings the same day.

Still to be added is the grill, filet table, and maybe a bench seat
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NautiBits
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by NautiBits »

Very nice, Tom!

Here's my bare nekkid setup. When you get a sec, could you PhotoShop your rig onto Cat's Meow? Lest you're wondering why my yacht lacks the aforementioned grenade launchers, did you not see my CG approved Defensive Offshore Guardian? Around these parts, he is the well-known 'Terror of E-Dock', aka 'Rusty', official CG recognition, 'The Turd Mate'. Don't let the winsome smile fool you!
Cat's Meow would like one too!
Cat's Meow would like one too!
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amytom
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

We've got a couple of defenders, a Samoyed and a shep/lab mix and either one will defend our ship till the death (death by licking that is). Also have a gunner's mate for a daughter...

amytom
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

Finally figured out what to do with the old davits. Cut them down and re weld to make attachment points to tighten up the dinghy or tow a drogue.


Please excuse the black sealant oozing out, that is left over 4000uv from an attempt to seal a leaking salon window, so far so good...
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amytom
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

BTW about the solar set up; I've been cleaning up some old wiring and re terminating the heavy connections on the batteries and what a difference! When I first hooked up the rear panels after the clean up I immediately saw 18-20 amps heading into the batteries.
The Bimini panels are still disconnected and the windgen has new bearings but hasn't been tested yet.

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36041
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by 36041 »

Looking good. Now you just need to load the kids up and join us down island....

Tom
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amytom
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Re: Solar only arch

Post by amytom »

Or better yet; unload the kids and stay down island. :)

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