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Off-grid Victron Build Critique

NC_hydro

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Oct 14, 2022
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After lurking/learning for several years, I think I know what I plan to order next week for my off-grid place. I invite the much wiser/experienced in the bunch to give their feedback.

https://www.currentconnected.com/share-cart/4M6JW2 The "cart" with almost everything except panels and battery.

"TL:DR" Full Lynx setup, Dual 10kva Quattro's, RS 450/200, Cerbo 7"

https://trophybattery.com/index.php/product/51-2v300e-3ul/ I will be going with 4 of these batteries. (60kWh 1200Ah)

100% off-grid, no grid power within 1/2mi. Location, WNC mountains around 3,200ft elevation, temps down to -14F that I've seen since 1993 and -25F once back in 1985. Frequent rain/sun/rain/sun weather during the day in the summertime. Around 1,000-1,200W of micro hydro will be added to this once this system is operational, and I can relocate the hydro downstream from Dad's place to my place. The power use is quite small at the moment since we are there only on weekends, and everything is propane/wood-fired. I plan on adding 1 mini-split in the ground-level basement and 1 upstairs to control humidity, and for the rare occasion, we need to cool the place down. Will also use those during the winter to keep the house just warm enough to prevent frozen water pipes. When we finish the already roughed-in kitchen, we will add an electric hot water heater and an electric cook stove downstairs. I will possibly add an electric dryer. I'm thinking of several large 25a/240v woodworking equipment pieces, a welder, and future car lift when I picked the 10kva over, say, a 5kva multiplus 2.

I realize I could get the SOK rack setup cheaper than the Trophy's, but I prefer the larger, heavier battery with fewer wires and the built-in heater, mostly, I like what I've heard and experienced talking to Dan relating to service and warranty..... 10 years non-pro-rated.

For panels, I have a new, never-used 2-axis Zomeworks tracker that I will put two panels on and a couple of 3-6 panel groupings of panels on two different sides of a barn vertically on the southeast and southwest sides. It can fit 3 on the southeast and probably 6 on the southwest side. If Needed, I may do a ground mount array next to the 2-axis tracker but with the hydro, I really don't need the panels, but I would like them for the times we have to dry up the hydro when there is a danger of pipes freezing and to just have some excess power on sunny days for AC and hot water heater. One of the reasons I was thinking the RS450/200 is the 4 mppt inputs for all the different facing array even though It's probably overkill. The alternative would be 2-3-4 smaller MPPT...

My main lingering thought is....battery coms with the Victron ecosystem....is it worth it versus going with a couple of XW Pros or maybe a Midnight Rosie (the only HF inverter I'd consider)

I'm sure I've overlooked something in all this. :)
 
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Trophy is good. I've helped a forum member sort out his Victron system, which is almost identical to yours including the Trophy batteries. Dan has provided ridiculously good service.

They arrived very imbalanced - common with all brands - so expect that and allow for some dwell time at elevated voltages or regular cycling to bring them into balance. It's been a year, and his poor PV conditions have yet to allow the batteries to get balanced.

Good news is that a cheap shitty generator will work as long as you set the AC input to not overload the generator.
 
Trophy is good. I've helped a forum member sort out his Victron system, which is almost identical to yours including the Trophy batteries. Dan has provided ridiculously good service.

They arrived very imbalanced - common with all brands - so expect that and allow for some dwell time at elevated voltages or regular cycling to bring them into balance. It's been a year, and his poor PV conditions have yet to allow the batteries to get balanced.

Good news is that a cheap shitty generator will work as long as you set the AC input to not overload the generator.
Good to know. For the next 12 months until we move there full time the load will be very minimal mostly on weekends so they should have plenty of time to dwell at higher voltages. I do have an 8kw diesel generator I could run as needed.
 
Unless you really want to see the "lights" on the Lynx distributor, you could just buy another power-in and add some bolts for fusing and save some money. The distributor is designed to pass fuse data only to the lynx bms, not the lynx shunt.

Also just be aware that the Lynx shunts have been known to not be as accurate as the smart shunt regarding voltage.

The 450/200 looks like it's a beast!
 
@NC_hydro, looks like a really BEEFY off grid system. the best.
16kw output and low idle, is nice.

couple of ideas:
how about combine DC and AC coupling?
so maybe get the 450/100 instead, and use the rest of the money on a 10kw grid tie inverter for ac coupling. That will increase your output capability during daytime by whatever the grid tie inverter is outputting, up to 10kw. so you could have up to 26kw of daytime power available.

and if you did it that way and didn't mind some load management, you could even go down to the 48/5000s at a significant cost savings.
 
@NC_hydro, looks like a really BEEFY off grid system. the best.
16kw output and low idle, is nice.

couple of ideas:
how about combine DC and AC coupling?
so maybe get the 450/100 instead, and use the rest of the money on a 10kw grid tie inverter for ac coupling. That will increase your output capability during daytime by whatever the grid tie inverter is outputting, up to 10kw. so you could have up to 26kw of daytime power available.

and if you did it that way and didn't mind some load management, you could even go down to the 48/5000s at a significant cost savings.
It is definitely an option, so basically, feed AC into the Victron system with the output from a paneled-up 10kw grid tie inverter. Adding a bit more complexity but not terrible.
 
Unless you really want to see the "lights" on the Lynx distributor, you could just buy another power-in and add some bolts for fusing and save some money. The distributor is designed to pass fuse data only to the lynx bms, not the lynx shunt.

Also just be aware that the Lynx shunts have been known to not be as accurate as the smart shunt regarding voltage.

The 450/200 looks like it's a beast!
Good to know, thanks for that. Yeah, it does look like a beast; I wish they had a 600V cap vs 450, though. One reason why I was thinking of the Scheider or Midnite system is that I believe their MPPTs are 600v. I'm also not planning to do a ton of panels, but it would have helped to have a bit more headroom on the max voltage on the cold days.
 
It is definitely an option, so basically, feed AC into the Victron system with the output from a paneled-up 10kw grid tie inverter. Adding a bit more complexity but not terrible.
Correct. You would tie in the grid tie inverter to the ac output of the victron .
 
Instead of the Victron MPPT RS 450/200, have you considered dual Victron MPPT RS 450/100s for similar performance but the added benefit of some redundancy for a relatively small price increase?
You know, I actually had thought that at one point. I would only need one at first for the two small arrays on the barn. I also thought for the Zomeworks tracker mount only having two panels...something like a 250/100 would probably suffice. But in either case, I could start with one 450/100, then add a second later, and I like the idea of having two units. Also, I did not mention this in my OP, but I will be adding some Midnite Solar SPD to this build.
 
Good to know, thanks for that. Yeah, it does look like a beast; I wish they had a 600V cap vs 450, though. One reason why I was thinking of the Scheider or Midnite system is that I believe their MPPTs are 600v. I'm also not planning to do a ton of panels, but it would have helped to have a bit more headroom on the max voltage on the cold days.
Another reason to ac a couple. You can get 550v 6kw inverter for $750 and 11kw 600v unit for $1500
 
The other option I've thought about but will have to wait till next week to see the price, I think, is the MNS "The One". While I am not a fan of AIO, I would possibly consider it since it's MNS.
 
The other option I've thought about but will have to wait till next week to see the price, I think, is the MNS "The One". While I am not a fan of AIO, I would possibly consider it since it's MNS.
Completely different than your off grid system with separate components.

So if you're considering that you should also be considering solark and eg4.

For the record I prefer separates but aio can be cheaper.
 
Completely different than your offgl grid system with separate components.

So if you're considering that you should also be considering solark and eg4.

For the record I prefer separates but aio can be cheaper.
I wouldn't touch EG4 with a 10ft pole, Solark.....7ft pole, maybe, if it was half the cost it is now.
 
Por que Why?
I want the system to work for a long time, like the Magnum MS4448PAE we have used since around 2008. Not to mention, those inverters are HF inverters, which aren't ideal for the inductive loads I'm anticipating. I prefer to pay a bit more for quality that will last. If I had a limited budget, I understand those products (Eg4 at least) provide a decent way of getting going, but I just would rather avoid them and anything to do with Eg4 and SS. I'm not even considering SS for panels, even though that's relatively low risk.
 
I want the system to work for a long time, like the Magnum MS4448PAE we have used since around 2008. Not to mention, those inverters are HF inverters, which aren't ideal for the inductive loads I'm anticipating. I prefer to pay a bit more for quality that will last. If I had a limited budget, I understand those products (Eg4 at least) provide a decent way of getting going, but I just would rather avoid them and anything to do with Eg4 and SS. I'm not even considering SS for panels, even though that's relatively low risk.
Ok I understand but how is this different from the mn aio that you were interested in?
 
Ok I understand but how is this different from the mn aio that you were interested in?
Midnite Solar is not in the same league as EG4 or Sol-Ark. An HF inverter can be good and have a strong surge capacity if built right; Midnite appears to have done it right with the Rosie and this new AIO. It may have some Chinese parts, but it was designed and, I think, built here in the US. EG4 is the Hyundai of inverters IMO 🤷‍♂️
 
Midnite Solar is not in the same league as EG4 or Sol-Ark. An HF inverter can be good and have a strong surge capacity if built right; Midnite appears to have done it right with the Rosie and this new AIO. It may have some Chinese parts, but it was designed and, I think, built here in the US. EG4 is the Hyundai of inverters IMO 🤷‍♂️
hmm. that's yet to be known, but I hope you are right
 
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