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Old 02-08-2009, 08:35 AM   #1
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A while back we asked the question 'could solar panels be mounted on the rails as we did not think we had any space to spare'.

We had some great responses - one in particular from Trim.

Unfortunately the project fell by the way side as other priorities and a non sailing bank manager took precedence.

Last week however we revisited the solar panel project and followed Trim's suggestion of mounting it on the back of the bimini. Blow me down if it wasn't the easiest and quickest project we've completed in a long while!

I had this notion that we needed to build some kind of targa bar over the bimini to support the panel - much as we have done on previous yachts. I was not convinced that our bimini would support the panel alone and then, how do you mount an aluminium square edged frame through canvas and secure it to stainless tube?

Trim's suggestion continued to bubble away in the ol grey cells as we went looking for mounting mechanisms. One quick stop to the local chandlery and we had the answer - use the same fittings already in use on the dodger - duh! I won't go into details as the attached pics are pretty self explanatory. The only additional thing we did was install two support brackets from the bimini to our pushpit.

Simple, quick and robust solution - many thanks Trim!

And yes - next time we will fly our ensign out of reach of the wind generator!

Panel_1.jpg
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Panel_7.jpg (114.4 KB, 134 views)
File Type: jpg Panel_6.jpg (57.9 KB, 175 views)
File Type: jpg Panel_4.jpg (107.1 KB, 164 views)
File Type: jpg Panel_9.jpg (78.6 KB, 208 views)
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Old 02-19-2009, 02:54 PM   #2
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I completely missed this post! Sorry about that....this is wonderful. Can you send me some larger pictures to my email and some part sources or part numbers for the clamp and the piece attached to the panel.

Well done!

You will need to be really careful with that stainless steel to aluminum contact on the frame. If you haven't already, get some Tefgel grease for the screws and several layers of electrical tape between the two contacting surfaces. Otherwise the edge of the aluminum frame will be gone in one season in a wet environment...which it looks like you have there.
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Old 02-20-2009, 01:16 AM   #3
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Mico,

This is even simpler than the design I was working on. I came home from work and found these parts at the marine store. Wonderfully simple.
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Old 04-26-2009, 01:57 AM   #4
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Now it is all integrated and fully installed...Solar11.jpg[attachmen

t=2248:Solar9.jpg]Solar8.jpg[attach

ment=2251:Solar6.jpg]Solar5.jpg[att

achment=2254:Solar3.jpg]Solar2.jpg
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Solar10.jpg (184.7 KB, 90 views)
File Type: jpg Solar9.jpg (112.8 KB, 45 views)
File Type: jpg Solar7.jpg (153.7 KB, 76 views)
File Type: jpg Solar6.jpg (118.1 KB, 46 views)
File Type: jpg Solar4.jpg (190.1 KB, 72 views)
File Type: jpg Solar3.jpg (145.2 KB, 56 views)
File Type: jpg Solar1.jpg (115.3 KB, 49 views)
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Old 04-26-2009, 02:23 AM   #5
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Trim And Mico,

Great info and pictures !!
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Old 04-26-2009, 03:42 AM   #6
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Thanks Trim

You hve just solved a dilemma that I have been pondering for nearly 6 months.

Regards

Rob
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Old 04-27-2009, 02:40 PM   #7
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What was the specific delemma? Maybe I can help more...
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Old 04-29-2009, 08:31 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trim50 View Post
What was the specific delemma? Maybe I can help more...
The dilemma was where to put the panels. Should I build a Targa or not. Your idea was a revelation. I prefer the extra bars rather than cutting my bimini.

Just a shame my wind genny cant mount the same way as I have two backstays.

Cheers

Rob & Annette

S/V Blue Lady
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Old 04-29-2009, 03:22 PM   #9
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Yeah, I struggled for years trying to make up my mind on arch or not to arch. I didn't like the idea of an arch on a boat with traditional lines. The reinforced bimini works just fine.
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