ez ground mounting system

Bluedog225

Texas
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Nov 18, 2019
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482
Well done! That looks like the way to go.

Curious why you don’t house the inverter/charger/battery at the panels and run AC to the house. Security?
 

FilterGuy

What, me worry?
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Nov 26, 2019
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Los Gatos CA
Well done! That looks like the way to go.

Curious why you don’t house the inverter/charger/battery at the panels and run AC to the house. Security?
The answer is in the details of the original post
next wiring three strings of 14 = 440vdc
Even if he ran 240VAC, the loss across the line would be greater than the 440VDC.

For the purposes of most DIY projects, AC vs DC is meaningless when it comes to line loss. It has everything to do with high voltage vs low voltage.

It turns out that AC is actually slightly less efficient for long-range distribution. In the past, it was so difficult to step DC voltage up and down that it was impractical to run DC over long ranges. With modern power electronics, it is now more feasible to run High Voltage DC and we are starting to see high power distribution over DC.
 
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Bluedog225

Texas
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Nov 18, 2019
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482
I was more concerned about safety. I’m pretty comfortable running AC anywhere. Don’t much care for DC.
 

partytyme

Solar Enthusiast
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Aug 23, 2021
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filter guy has it right i was able to run 3 pair of 14 gauge with less than3% loss vs 1 gauge for 240ac saving about 800.00
 

Hedges

I See Electromagnetic Fields!
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Voltage drop on the input to a switcher (MPPT) is made up for by drawing more current.
Voltage drop in regulated AC doesn't get compensated for, can brown-out motors, etc.

It's only during peak production times that PV IR drop is big, less during bad days or other times of day.
But, if you have 5kW of PV during sunlight and produce 1kW AC continuously for small loads, then IR drop of AC would be better.
 

nogridhome

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Chapel Hill, N.C.
That's very cool! COOLER THAN THE OTHER SIDE OF THE PILLOW
I wanted to get something that was engineered and stamped by PE. So, this is what I did. PE's freakin LOVE concrete, it took 90each 80 pound bags for my 3 arrays that mount 9 panels each. I am also attaching the pic of the slope vs wind limit spec sheet for your info. Well done! ALL THE BEST!!!
 

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MrM1

I'm Here, But I'm Not All There
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N. Central FL
@partytyme how are you handling panel end clamping? I used Unistrut and mid clamping was easy - just a bolt and washer, but when I tried to use a bolt and washer as an end clamp, the washer would tilt over as I tightened the bolt and ended up not holding.

Do you have pics of your end clamping? (the pics I've seen don't seem to show the finished end clamping)
 

nogridhome

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The clamps fit inside the rail, then when you tighten they squeeze the panel to the rail while anchoring them selves in place. The clamps slide up and down and the rails slide back and forth making this very easy to adjust to any panel size. These come from Northern Arizona Wind and Sun. ALL THE BEST!
 

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nogridhome

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I'm curious: Why the slope you chose? How deep are the holes for the frame?
Please consider using guy wires on the four corners to secure the entire unit during high winds when the ground is wet.
How much wind would you expect this to handle? What part on the globe do you reside?
Thanky
 

Hedges

I See Electromagnetic Fields!
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The clamps fit inside the rail, then when you tighten they squeeze the panel to the rail while anchoring them selves in place. The clamps slide up and down and the rails slide back and forth making this very easy to adjust to any panel size. These come from Northern Arizona Wind and Sun. ALL THE BEST!

Is that a splice in the middle of the rail?
That would significantly affect strength. Although, if a clamp keeps top edge aligned (as shown in your picture), long strap apparently bolted to bottom holds it when in tension due to wind pressure.

My rails are all one piece, 18' long and supported by 2 or 3 horizontal pipes.
I think splices are only for applications like roof mounting where each rail has multiple supports.
 

nogridhome

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Yes it is a splice. It is about 2/3 vs 1/3 (not in the middle - would be in the middle if I had a 4 tall array instead of 3). There is a big chunk of metal inside the rail and those clamps make it all tight. This stuff is PE approved so I call it good. I would question the clamps on the panels before the rail splice. (that's just me with my hands on it) I agree, splices suck. You could probably get these rails whole somewhere but then they would ship via tractor trailor. The UPS shipping made me VERY happy as access to my house is dicey.
 

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MrM1

I'm Here, But I'm Not All There
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The clamps fit inside the rail, then when you tighten they squeeze the panel to the rail while anchoring them selves in place. The clamps slide up and down and the rails slide back and forth making this very easy to adjust to any panel size. These come from Northern Arizona Wind and Sun. ALL THE BEST!
Are you using Unistrut? Looks like you might have changed to aluminum solar rack rail
 

Hedges

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I last bought some surplus 17' heavy-duty Unistrut rails. Arranged truck shipping to a freight terminal (couple $hundred), and picked it up with my pickup that has roof rack over bed and over cab to front bumper.
Forklift couldn't quite make the height with pickup in the parking lot, had to slip on from end and muscle it over to fit full length.
If I parallel parked at the loading dock, then it would reach.
 
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