UniStrut panel clamps?

McCarthy

Solar Addict
Joined
Nov 4, 2020
Messages
225
I'm using LOW PROFILE aluminum strut channels, they are plenty strong. Had to bend mine to fit the curve on my minivan camper roof. I had to stand in the middle of those 7 foot pieces with the ends being supported and bonce around for them to give in a little. 200 pound guy. Full size (square) strut channels will hold 3 fold.

I used L brackets and channel nuts, all from McMaster-Carr. They offer both steel and alu channels. Shipping took 2 days. They have an awesome selection!




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Poverty Pony

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 19, 2021
Messages
24
I'm using LOW PROFILE aluminum strut channels, they are plenty strong. Had to bend mine to fit the curve on my minivan camper roof. I had to stand in the middle of those 7 foot pieces with the ends being supported and bonce around for them to give in a little. 200 pound guy. Full size (square) strut channels will hold 3 fold.

I used L brackets and channel nuts, all from McMaster-Carr. They offer both steel and alu channels. Shipping took 2 days. They have an awesome selection!




1631854215131-png.65029


1631915512346-png.65125
That's a very nice tilting install! Almost makes me wish I skipped the factory rails. Do you have a picture of how it's supported on the side opposite the hinges; how do you adjust the angle and how do you keep it in place while driving?
 

jwelter99

Solar Addict
Joined
Dec 6, 2020
Messages
552
That's up to you and your build but it's not a good idea to have lots of weight up high. It will already be heavy with the panels and Unistrut crossbeams. You can save 40lbs using the 80/20 rails instead of more Unistrut.

One other big benefit of the 80/20 rails is that they give you better mounting options. The feet on the end of the IronRidge UFO mounts fit just fine in the 80/20 rail slot. I don't know how you would use them with a Unistrut rail.

Aluminum unistrut is $25 for 10 feet sections at Zoro and the perfect solution. 80/20 is nice stuff to work with but mixing with unistrut doesn't make sense and using only 80/20 is way overkill for a large install.
 

McCarthy

Solar Addict
Joined
Nov 4, 2020
Messages
225
That's a very nice tilting install! Almost makes me wish I skipped the factory rails. Do you have a picture of how it's supported on the side opposite the hinges; how do you adjust the angle and how do you keep it in place while driving?

I took that photo when I was working on the wires, and I don't plan to tilt it unless I REALLY need it. I'm in Florida and get a ton of sun, my system is overkill to begin with, and I'm pretty stingy with power consumption. When I want to tilt it, I have to take out 2 screws and fold down a piece of aluminum in the middle.

If I'd be further up North I'd motorize a tilt function, both sides.

Got 3 chargers, for solar, alternator and shore power. If I'm gone over night, I need 25 W/h for my fridge, 4 W/h for a couple fans pushing hot air out of the cabin at all time. Water pump and LED lights don't use anything worthwhile. Only thing that consumes some is my induction cooktop and I use that for one meal a day, 20 min max, like cooking some pasta or searing a steak.
 

Zwy

Solar Addict
Joined
Jan 3, 2021
Messages
828
That's a very nice tilting install! Almost makes me wish I skipped the factory rails. Do you have a picture of how it's supported on the side opposite the hinges; how do you adjust the angle and how do you keep it in place while driving?
How about this setup? https://diysolarforum.com/threads/l...ecommendation-for-motorhome.20943/post-261683




 

Lt.Dan

Photon Sorcerer
Joined
Dec 25, 2020
Messages
1,152
Location
Visalia, Ca
Aluminum unistrut is $25 for 10 feet sections at Zoro and the perfect solution. 80/20 is nice stuff to work with but mixing with unistrut doesn't make sense and using only 80/20 is way overkill for a large install.
$2.50/ft??? Thats ridiculously cheap!! Got a link to that?
 

Poverty Pony

Solar Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 19, 2021
Messages
24
$2.50/ft??? Thats ridiculously cheap!! Got a link to that?

Not genuine Unistrut I think, but I've never had problems with superstrut, etc. Then again I blow my nose on facial tissue, never saw the need for Kleenex. free shipping for >$75 as well.

Some of the 10 ft. AL pieces are out of stock, and some are more than $2.50/ft... but you can buy 1 foot for $2.35! Fire up the welder and you can have your 10 ft. section for cheap 😜 I think the pandemic has worked a number on a lot of items. Even McMaster-Carr is on extended backorder for items that I've been buying overnight for years.
 
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jwelter99

Solar Addict
Joined
Dec 6, 2020
Messages
552
$2.50/ft??? Thats ridiculously cheap!! Got a link to that?

Just checked and they seem to have many options out of stock, and what is available is inflated pricing. But check here:


I got the 10 foot 1/2 height with holes (not slots) - bought 8 and it was just under $200 delivered about 6 weeks ago. Product arrived in good shape and nice quality.

I also get 20% off coupons from Zoro after my first order, so let me know if you are ordering anything and I can send you a valid discount code if I have a current one.
 
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