Class B

2018 Ford Transit Cargo Van (Customer Install)

It can be very inspiring to see what our customers do with our kits.  The obvious planning, compact layout, and artistry of this installation are impressive.  Nice work Cliff.

 

Here’s what Cliff had to say about his experience:

 

My son came to me and said he wanted to live and work out of a van. He does 3D Computer Design work and I thought he is going to need a lot of power. We chose a used 2018 full size Ford Transit cargo van and 3 LG 360W solar panels. Not knowing much about how to complete the rest of the electrical system, I contacted AM Solar and asked if they could advise and sell me whatever else I needed. Their support was spectacular. They drew up a schematic showing all the components and how they are interconnected. They shipped all the components, included all the necessary wire and connectors immediately. I had several questions along the way, which AM Solar technicians quickly answered. It took my son and I several months to figure out how the electrical, propane, water and cabinetry all intertwined in the relatively small space. I wanted all the control switches accessible out the back door and a cabinet able to add more batteries if needed. After several layout design iterations, we came up with what we think is an effective and efficient equipment layout. My son and I now have a bonding experience that will last the rest of our lives, thanks to the great assistance of AM Solar. Cliff Gerber - July 2019

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AM Solar supplied connection diagram

AM Solar supplied connection diagram

Customer designed layout

Customer designed layout

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5/29/18 - Winnebago Travato, 21’

This client came to us equipped with a Goal Zero Yeti 400 Portable Power Station, a Zamp 100W solar panel, and a 30A Zamp charge controller.  Her primary use for the Yeti 400 Power Station was to power her CPAP machine, which she was able to do for about 2 nights before it needed to be recharged.  She used the Zamp solar system to power her refrigerator, but 100W wasn’t enough to keep up with the refrigerator’s power needs.  We upgraded her solar system to 260W using a Zamp 170W panel, and a Zamp 90W panel, which we bolted together using two angle aluminum bars.  We installed a conveniently placed outlet for her CPAP machine, which is now powered directly from her house batteries, along with her refrigerator.  Now she has a solar power system that meets her energy usage needs without the worry of charging the Yeti 400, or her food getting warm.

Equipment Added:  1x ZS170 Solar Panel Kit 1x ZS90 Solar Panel Kit 1x Roof Combiner Box 1x Victron SmartSolar MPPT 30A Charge Controller Core 1x Victron BMV-712 Smart Battery Monitor

Equipment Added:
1x ZS170 Solar Panel Kit
1x ZS90 Solar Panel Kit
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x Victron SmartSolar MPPT 30A Charge Controller Core
1x Victron BMV-712 Smart Battery Monitor

Solar Array Top

Solar Array Top

Solar Array Bottom

Solar Array Bottom

5/22/18 – 2016 Winnebago View, 24’

This client asked us to install as much solar power as possible on the roof of their Winnebago View.  The space was pretty limited, but we managed to install three Zamp Solar 170W solar panels, providing a total of 510W of solar power.  Ideally, we would recommend a 400Ah battery bank with this system to provide enough power to manage their frequent microwave and hair dryer use.  Due to space constraints there was only enough room for a 300Ah battery bank, which we placed underneath their top step.  Due to the height of the LifeLine AGM batteries we had to modify the lid to the compartment housing the batteries so that the battery terminals were not going to be touching a metal lid.  With this accomplished, they are able to use their microwave and hair dryer, they will just want to monitor their power usage to ensure they are not draining their batteries more quickly than they would like.  

Equipment Added:  3x Zamp Solar 170W Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof Combiner Box 1x SunRunner Victron MPPT 50A Charge Controller Core 2x AGM GPL 6CT 300Ah Batteries 1x Victron BMV-712 Smart Battery Monitor 1x Victron MultiPlus 12/3000VA Inverter 1x Victron Color Control GX Monitor

Equipment Added:
3x Zamp Solar 170W Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Victron MPPT 50A Charge Controller Core
2x AGM GPL 6CT 300Ah Batteries
1x Victron BMV-712 Smart Battery Monitor
1x Victron MultiPlus 12/3000VA Inverter
1x Victron Color Control GX Monitor

300Ah Battery Bank

300Ah Battery Bank

Inverter, Charge Controller, Monitor

Inverter, Charge Controller, Monitor

Storage Bay

Storage Bay

Solar Array

Solar Array

9/26/17 – 2008 Winnebago View, 24’

This client was looking for something small and relatively inexpensive to keep his batteries charged and in good health.  To accomplish his goal, we installed 360W of solar charging power along with a 25A Blue Sky charge controller.  He’ll also be able to use the added solar power to help run some light DC loads.

Equipment Added:  2x SF180 Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof Combiner Box 1x SunRunner Gold MPPT 30A Charge Controller Core  

Equipment Added:
2x SF180 Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Gold MPPT 30A Charge Controller Core
 

Charge Controller

Charge Controller

Solar Panels

Solar Panels

8/25/17 – Ford Pop Up Van

Some clients bring us rigs with very little work done in terms of making the van a viable place to live.  An empty rig gives us plenty of options when it comes to strategizing the placement of our equipment, but we also want to make sure that our clients have some flexibility as they make changes.  We completed this installation knowing that when the client ultimately builds out their rig they may need to move our equipment.  This van was set up so that the client can relocate the components we installed (if needed) without much of a headache. 

Equipment Added:  2x SF180 Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof Combiner Box 1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 40A Charge Controller Core 1x Magnum MS2000 Inverter

Equipment Added:
2x SF180 Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 40A Charge Controller Core
1x Magnum MS2000 Inverter

Magnum Inverter

Magnum Inverter

Lifeline Batteries

Lifeline Batteries

8/31/17 – 2016 Winnebago View, 25.5’

The pictures in this post show the steps we had to take in order to upgrade this client’s battery bank from two 12V wet cell batteries connected in parallel (150Ah) to their new battery bank comprised of two 6V Lifeline AGM GPL 6CT batteries (300Ah) connected in series. The battery bay was too small to accommodate the new AGMs without modifying the bay lid. A plasma cutter was used to remove most of the metal top of the battery bay so that the battery terminals would not touch the metal lid. Now there is just enough room for the new the batteries to fit, thus doubling their battery capacity as a result.

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Equipment Added:
1x SF180 Solar Panel Kit
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Victron MPPT 25A Charge Controller Core
2x AGM GPL 6CTs 300Ah Batteries

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8/31/17 – 2016 Winnebago Era, 24’

This client requested to have a portable panel installed along with an additional 300W of solar power on their roof.  We provided a 120W portable panel from @zampsolar, and we installed a portable panel plug on their bumper for easy access.  All they have to do is plug the panel in, put it a sunny area, and it will produce solar power.  In the event they are parked in a shaded area they still have a way to harness the power of the sun. 

Equipment Added:  3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof Combiner Box 1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A Charge Controller Core 1x Victron Phoenix Inverter Kit 1x Portable Panel Plug and Wall Receipt 1x Zamp 120W Folding Solar Panel with Case

Equipment Added:
3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A Charge Controller Core
1x Victron Phoenix Inverter Kit
1x Portable Panel Plug and Wall Receipt
1x Zamp 120W Folding Solar Panel with Case

300W roof mount solar charging system

300W roof mount solar charging system

External plug for portable panel

External plug for portable panel

Zamp Folding Panel

Zamp Folding Panel

9/1/17 – 1999 Roadtrek Dodge 170

Space can be an issue for some of our clients who want as much solar power as possible, but don’t have much room.  The available space on this roof was very limited, and we concluded that our standard solar panels would not provide the best fit for this client.   Our friends @zampsolar provided these slim 80W solar panels that fit perfectly on the sides of this client’s air conditioner.  Zamp Solar also offers some awesome portable solar panels that are designed and built right here in the United States.

Equipment Added:  2x Zamp 80W Solar Panels 1x Victron MPPT 15A Charge Controller Core 1x Victron Bluetooth Smart Dongle 2x 220Ah AGM GPL 4CTs Batteries

Equipment Added:
2x Zamp 80W Solar Panels
1x Victron MPPT 15A Charge Controller Core
1x Victron Bluetooth Smart Dongle
2x 220Ah AGM GPL 4CTs Batteries

9/15/17 – 2008 Pleasure-Way, 21’

This client wanted to be able to run his microwave, and he wanted all of his AC outlets to be functional when dry camping.  The existing battery bank was not large enough to power the loads he was planning on running.  It’s recommended that when running a heavy AC load (like a microwave) you want to have at least a 300Ah to 400Ah battery bank.  We doubled the size of his battery bank (from 220Ah to 440Ah), installed a solar charging system and an inverter, which should give him the power he needs to be comfortable while dry camping.  
 

Equipment Added:  3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof Combiner Box 1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A Charge Controller Core 1x Samlex 200W Inverter, Remote, and Transfer Switch 2x AGM 220Ah 4CTs

Equipment Added:
3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A Charge Controller Core
1x Samlex 200W Inverter, Remote, and Transfer Switch
2x AGM 220Ah 4CTs

300W Solar Array

300W Solar Array

Blue Sky Solar Charge Controller

Blue Sky Solar Charge Controller

9/7/17 – 1998 Lazy Daze w/ Chevy Chassis, 26’

This client is a collector of Lazy Daze RV's.  This is the 3rd solar and mobile power system we have installed for him.  He told us his next Lazy Daze will be for his retirement, and he’ll bring it in to us for one final AM Solar system installation.  We hope he’s enjoying a few “lazy days” while dry camping, and using a little solar power to run some of his light DC loads.

Equipment Added:  2x SF180 Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof Combiner Box 1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A Charge Controller Core 1x 19.5” Tilt Bar Set 1x PD4645 Converter Charger 2x 300Ah 6V AGM 6CTs Batteries

Equipment Added:
2x SF180 Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A Charge Controller Core
1x 19.5” Tilt Bar Set
1x PD4645 Converter Charger
2x 300Ah 6V AGM 6CTs Batteries

Blue Sky Charge Controller

Blue Sky Charge Controller

Join Roger as he replaces his batteries

Roger, a full time RVer and AM Solar Partner, just proved how you can get seven years out of AGM batteries if you take good care of them with quality chargers.  Last weekend he replaced his four Lifeline GPL-6CT (6V 300Ah AGM) batteries with a new batch.  He has a custom battery tray made by our neighbor (Commercial Metals) for his rig, a 2005 R-Vision Trail-Lite 235S B+ (24'), that enables him to slide out the majority of his 400+lb system with a forklift.  This clever design makes system maintenance much easier (assuming he has access to a forklift).

7/31/17 – 2017 Airstream Grand Tour, 24’

Smaller RVs, like this Airstream Grand Tour, can provide some challenges when it comes to finding enough room to install all the necessary components without taking up too much of our client’s storage space. For this client, we were able to install the vast majority of their system underneath their couch (not the solar panels though), minimizing the footprint of the system.  The Battery Management System we installed is removable, which can make upgrading much easier.

Equipment Installed:  4x SP100 Solar Panel Kits 1x SunRunner Victron MPPT 30A Charge Controller Core 1x 360Ah Signature Lithium Battery Bank 1x Victron MultiPlus 12/2000 Inverter/Charger Kit 1x Victron Digital MultiControl Remote Monitor

Equipment Installed:
4x SP100 Solar Panel Kits
1x SunRunner Victron MPPT 30A Charge Controller Core
1x 360Ah Signature Lithium Battery Bank
1x Victron MultiPlus 12/2000 Inverter/Charger Kit
1x Victron Digital MultiControl Remote Monitor

4x 90Ah lithium batteries and a 2000VA inverter

4x 90Ah lithium batteries and a 2000VA inverter

System BMS and circuit protection

System BMS and circuit protection

4/27/2017 - 2016 Airstream Interstate, 33’

This client had us add onto an existing setup consisting of a 2512iXL charge controller core and a set of AGMS.  He now has a much more powerful solar charger and a 3000VA inverter capable of running a wide range of loads including a microwave and a coffee maker.  The Bluetooth smart dongle allows monitoring of the system to take place wirelessly, with a smart phone.

Equipment Added:  4x SP100 Panel Kits 1x Victron Multiplus 3000VA Inverter kit 2x 6V 300Ah AGM 6CT Batteries 1x Victron MPPT 100/15 Charge Controller Core 1x Bluetooth Smart Dongle 1x Portable plugs

Equipment Added:
4x SP100 Panel Kits
1x Victron Multiplus 3000VA Inverter kit
2x 6V 300Ah AGM 6CT Batteries
1x Victron MPPT 100/15 Charge Controller Core
1x Bluetooth Smart Dongle
1x Portable plugs

AGM Batteries, Bluetooth Dongle, Victron Charge Controller

AGM Batteries, Bluetooth Dongle, Victron Charge Controller

System Monitors

System Monitors

Victron Multiplus 3000VA Inverter System

Victron Multiplus 3000VA Inverter System

 

 

4/12/2017 - 2016 Itasca Navion 24J, 24'

This client needed a small solar charging system for DC loads and battery maintenance with a battery monitor to help them regulate energy consumption.  What they got was a solar panel kit consisting of two of our SF100 solar panels connected in parallel with our roof mount combiner box.  To reduce DC line losses, heavy 6ga wire was routed from the combiner box to the MPPT charge controller and then to the battery bank.  Between the most negative battery and all negative connections, we installed a shunt to measure current.  The shunt and the charge controller communicate with the Blue Sky IPN Pro monitor to give full system status with Amp-hour precision.

Equipment added:  2x SF100 Solar Panel Kits 1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A System Core 1x Roof C-Box 1x Tilt Bar Set 15.5"

Equipment added:
2x SF100 Solar Panel Kits
1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A System Core
1x Roof C-Box
1x Tilt Bar Set 15.5"

200W Solar Kit

200W Solar Kit

Blue Sky 2512iX HV Charge Controller

Blue Sky 2512iX HV Charge Controller

Blue Sky IPN Pro Remote

Blue Sky IPN Pro Remote

3/29/17 - 2016 Airstream Interstate Grand Tour, 25.5'

This tech savvy client wanted a solar charging system with a battery monitor, and they wanted to be able to communicate with all of it over Bluetooth with a smart phone.  The 300W of solar panels will generate approximately 900Wh or 75Ah of energy per day.

Equipment Added:   3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof C-Box 1x SunRunner Victron MPPT 30A System Core 1x Victron BMV-702 Battery Monitor 2x Victron BlueTooth Smart Dongles 1x 15.5" Tilt Bar Set

Equipment Added:
3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof C-Box
1x SunRunner Victron MPPT 30A System Core
1x Victron BMV-702 Battery Monitor
2x Victron BlueTooth Smart Dongles
1x 15.5" Tilt Bar Set

Inverter and battery monitor

Inverter and battery monitor

300W from AM Solar plus the original 100W flexible panel

300W from AM Solar plus the original 100W flexible panel

Charge controller

Charge controller

3/22/2017 - 2008 Roadtrek P170, 14'

Roadtreks and other van conversions make up a large percentage of the RV install side of our business.  The client got a 300W solar charging system which can feed about 75Ah/day onto the 220Ah AGM battery bank via a Blue Sky MPPT charge controller.   To keep the starter battery topped off, we also included a Trik-L-Start, which lets a small amount of current flow from the house battery bank.

Trik-L-Start charger

Trik-L-Start charger

Battery bank and system core

Battery bank and system core

Extra tall mount feet lift the panels over vents.

Extra tall mount feet lift the panels over vents.

2/13/2017 - 2010 Roadtrek 210 W.B., 24'

This client had a simple solar charging system installed.  Because of the tight roof space, we used our compact SP100 solar panels.  The addition of a single set of tilt bars allows for easy roof cleaning.

Equipment Added:  3x SP100 Solar Panels 1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A System Core 1x Roof C-Box 1x 15.5" Tilt Bar Set

Equipment Added:
3x SP100 Solar Panels
1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A System Core
1x Roof C-Box
1x 15.5" Tilt Bar Set

Blue Sky IPN Pro System Monitor

Blue Sky IPN Pro System Monitor

Blue Sky MPPT Charge Controller

Blue Sky MPPT Charge Controller

Flooded batteries

Flooded batteries

2/6/2017 - 2013 Pleasure-Way, Mercedes Chassis, 22'

We installed a 220Ah AGM battery bank and a 300W solar charging system on this client’s van.  In typical weather conditions, the solar panels will replenish about 75Ah per day (70% of the battery bank’s usable capacity).  Solar, combined with alternator charging will keep these batteries topped off.

Equipment Added:  3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits 1x Roof Mount Combiner Box 1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A System Core 2x 12V AGM 4CT 220Ah Batteries

Equipment Added:
3x SP100 Solar Panel Kits
1x Roof Mount Combiner Box
1x SunRunner Signature MPPT 25A System Core
2x 12V AGM 4CT 220Ah Batteries

Charge controller and shunt

Charge controller and shunt

Combiner Box

Combiner Box

AGM Batteries

AGM Batteries

9/8/2016 - 2017 Winnebago View, 24’

This customer wanted a simple solar charging system added to their rig.  They were very familiar with Bogart Engineering equipment and opted for the Tri-Metric 2030A, rather than the Blue Sky IPN PRO Remote.

320W Solar Charging System

320W Solar Charging System

Blue Sky 3000i Charge Controller

Blue Sky 3000i Charge Controller

Tri-Metric Battery Monitor

Tri-Metric Battery Monitor