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2016 3500 ext-ht
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am over it. Want to get rid of the Penguin2 a/c and fill the roof real estate with panels.

Looking for others who have succesfully filled their rooftops with solar, 900-1200w and used 8020 AND panels @ less than 59" width using the various t-nub attachment points on the PM.

No Maxair, nothing but pure solar. I have other means for air conditioning that does not involve a rooftop unit or fan. After many years with this van, have discovered that fans, rooftop ac are less important than max rooftop solar generation.
 

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I have done more solar projects on Transits and Sprinters vs Promasters.

One aspect that is sometimes under estimated is that the 8020 rails can extend further back than the end of the van roof. On the last Transit project, the customer pushed this length to just short of the end of the bumper.

Solarland has one of the largest ranges of solar panel lengths to choose from that I have seen:

 

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I have a fan, AC, and 680w of solar. If I got rid of the fan and AC I could add another 340w panel. Maybe 2 if I really pushed it.

Honestly - in direct sunlight we can run our AC directly off the solar. I can't really imagine needing more.
 

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I have 700 watts and 2 MaxxAir fans on a little 118 so you could easily use (4) 250 watt panels in a similar configuration on your van. I also used low profile stainless steel Unistrut for the rails with 1/8" aluminum angle to attach the panels to the strut instead of 8020 to get the panels as close to the roof as possible. You can see more pictures of the installation in this album: 2019 RAM Promaster 1500
Wheel Tire Land vehicle Vehicle Car
 

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2021 1500 136"WB High top
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I am over it. Want to get rid of the Penguin2 a/c and fill the roof real estate with panels.

Looking for others who have succesfully filled their rooftops with solar, 900-1200w and used 8020 AND panels @ less than 59" width using the various t-nub attachment points on the PM.

No Maxair, nothing but pure solar. I have other means for air conditioning that does not involve a rooftop unit or fan. After many years with this van, have discovered that fans, rooftop ac are less important than max rooftop solar generation.
@Hein just posted this video and it's a great looking roof-rack solution to fit maximum panels

 

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The first rule of solar panel fight club…is don’t talk about solar panel fight club!

The second rule of solar panel fight club…is don’t talk about solar panel fight club!

The third rule of solar panel fight club….is:

AND panels @ less than 59" width using the various t-nub attachment points on the PM.
That third rule really limits options to 200w panels and smaller, for a total of around 1000w on a 159” EXT.

I’d say that’s 4x200w common size panels in pairs, side-by-side lengthwise so they can fit between the roof rack mounting points, and a single 200w panel in uncommon size so it can be mounted horizontally.
 

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Here's 930 watts plus a single Fantastic Fan on a non-extended 159" wheel base. We use 3:
Hyundai 310 Watt monocrystalline, 39.25" x 65.9" x 1.3"
Wheel Land vehicle Tire Sky Vehicle
 
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After many years with this van, have discovered that fans, rooftop ac are less important than max rooftop solar generation.
Tell me more, tell me more...

Well, AC can be undercarriage. It is easy.
But how about fans? Good, big fans that can move air at low RPM (noise). I don't see a way around it except low profile fans hiding under panels. But haven't seen a solution, big fans are big to fit under panels, and small fans are noisy
 

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2016 3500 ext-ht
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
This is what I'm most interested in, how are you planning to fill that A/C with something comparable.
Low profile operable marine hatch, EPDM, move that hole in the flat area above cab somewhere around 8000asl?
Waiting for the Velit underbench a/c to see how that works out. Although. we have been very happy with a portable evap cooler (1300cfm?) when odt is less than 105⁰ and humidity below 60%. Anything above that will require the ac or just move to higher elevation. We get hardly any heat gain on the ceiling and walls so the underbench ac is probably enough.
 

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2016 3500 ext-ht
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1,154 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Tell me more, tell me more...

Well, AC can be undercarriage. It is easy.
But how about fans? Good, big fans that can move air at low RPM (noise). I don't see a way around it except low profile fans hiding under panels. But haven't seen a solution, big fans are big to fit under panels, and small fans are noisy
Not to worried about fan noise now that the Penguin db has already deafened us.:mad:
 

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2016 3500 ext-ht
Joined
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1,154 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I have done more solar projects on Transits and Sprinters vs Promasters.

One aspect that is sometimes under estimated is that the 8020 rails can extend further back than the end of the van roof. On the last Transit project, the customer pushed this length to just short of the end of the bumper.

Solarland has one of the largest ranges of solar panel lengths to choose from that I have seen:

I don't mind the extension on the back, within reason. Planning on placing a long light bar there anyway. Solarland research on the list. Thanks Harry.
 

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I am over it. Want to get rid of the Penguin2 a/c and fill the roof real estate with panels.

Looking for others who have succesfully filled their rooftops with solar, 900-1200w and used 8020 AND panels @ less than 59" width using the various t-nub attachment points on the PM.

No Maxair, nothing but pure solar. I have other means for air conditioning that does not involve a rooftop unit or fan. After many years with this van, have discovered that fans, rooftop ac are less important than max rooftop solar generation.
I am over it. Want to get rid of the Penguin2 a/c and fill the roof real estate with panels.

Looking for others who have succesfully filled their rooftops with solar, 900-1200w and used 8020 AND panels @ less than 59" width using the various t-nub attachment points on the PM.

No Maxair, nothing but pure solar. I have other means for air conditioning that does not involve a rooftop unit or fan. After many years with this van, have discovered that fans, rooftop ac are less important than max rooftop solar generation.
I have 400 watts mounted on 80/20 on my 136.
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Grille Window Hood Vehicle Automotive lighting

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