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Thank you for the great forum, Safe Driving over the weekend. Sincerely Jason
Erastus

24 x 450W solar tracker

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Johan,

The reason why I have this approached is I have a pan handle of +/- 40 meters with a 3 meter retaining wall. My neighbors are +/- 3M above me.  Therefore I am building a single garage (40M a 4M  :D )on top of the retaining wall for the solar panels. It is 8 meter wasted space. For your next question the reason for the garage is simple. National law states a solar panel can not be mounted higher than 1.5M of the mounted place.  Therefore I can build a garage with a 2.9M wall and then mount the panels on top of the garage. The bottom part is still used as a drive way to my house with a garage on top and the 4 meter unused land is then covered during the day by solar panels that acts like a shaded roof for the cars when they stand in the drive way. I am not allowed to have a roof or a shaded area on the drive way for the 4M section but the solar panel which will then be +/- 8 M above the drive way will work as a shaded area block the bulk of the sun.  Following the sun means I have a perfect shaded area.

 

image.thumb.png.5eaedb284315b34053894a1209ef8074.png

Edited by Erastus

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Thanks, I used 50mm 4 xmm (read F$KKEN SWAAR), but I was scared of lagging under the weight and also I overcompensated on strength rather than coming up short... haha!

Yes, I started out with a company that manufactures an actuator controller for such applications (homecsp.com) and from there I modified it until it did what I needed it to.  On the movement side I use 12000 Newton Actuators, 36" for the east-west side and 42" for the north-south side. 

I haven't experienced any negative pressure though, so that's a good thing ;).

Have a goodie, lovely sunset where you live!

 

Kind Regards

 

Johan

 

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Johan,
Jup sunsets this time of the year are incredible. This is the little motor I use. R1600 for two delivered. I could not get something cheaper. In SA the best price I could get was over the R2K each.

 

image.png.fc58114242b49ef42e14163c26702713.png

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My frame for 16 x 500W panels;  A pdf is uploaded with accurate measurements. To go to 24 panels the 20 x 40 rectangle tubing must be replaced with 20 x 40 x 4mm or when mounted higher than 9 meters 20 x 40 x 6mm.  When upgrading to 24 panels the mounting plate get changed from 10mm to 20mm thickness and two bearings are used in stead of 1 for additional strength

image.thumb.png.141d7fbd9e377b4f92f8fd57f1e89503.png

SolarStructure.pdf

 

I had this "bracket cut from 20mm mild steel and welded on to the frame. An accurate drawing is attached in PDF formet.

image.thumb.png.e7cb0ccd7fd20754c58d3f0a73556602.png

MountingBracket .jpg

 

BearinHolderPlum.pdf

 

The mounting plate for the solar panels on top of the gearbox.

image.thumb.png.42df7094330978c42cc5efdc53f6e161.png

SolarPanelMount.pdf

Edited by Erastus

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41 minutes ago, plonkster said:

Looks like standard wiper motors?

Not sure,

They have more torque I believe and they operate from 12 - 24 peak burst of 36V allowed.  12V = +/- 26 RPM 24 +/- 52 RPM. It also have a locking gear that acts as a "brake". 

Not sure what the speks are of a wiper motor. But I recon a wiper motor should be fine. I did everything new to get all costs etc. Once done I will install another 11 trackers at my house and then another 100 trackers at another area. This exercise is the pre-production run in order to see the final pitfalls and improvements before I make 10 plus in one go. The 10 will be less expensive as the gears I will also ship in and not fly in.  The 100 units will have 20 panels per tracker or 10Kwatt units to work with my 10Kwatt 3 phase inverter. 100 units should generate +/- 1Mw.  Flying in permanent magnetic motors are more expensive

The total cost of these two motors delivered at my house was R 529 VAT & TAXES.  The two motors was R 1530 flown in.  When I order the next lot it will be shipped via sea. The total cost for the two was just over the  R 2060.  I could not get these motors at a better price.  Shipment via ship will mean the motor cost will drop by +/- R400. The 200 odd will accompany my other 500W 48.7V solar panels.

It is for this reason I did not go for a motor that one can reuse.  I am sure the wiper motors will work fine.  I can swing twenty odd panels with my small finger. Virtical up and down will have to lift 15Kg ( can be adjusted to fit the motor).
 

Edited by Erastus

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On 2019/10/16 at 4:04 PM, Erastus said:

I will install another 11 trackers at my house

Just out of interest.

You are installing allot of trackers, does that mean you will have 11 gearboxes with its own rig & panels at different location by your house?

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Gerrie,

If you look at the google map of my property you will see I have a very long drive way.  The council is allowing me to build a garage on it (Pink area).  Therefore it will be an ideal place to mount these devices.  It also allow met to test performance and see if it works the way it should.

Regards

image.thumb.png.e6e874f0d60301f3c25a568f18cb3fc7.png

Edited by Erastus

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The unit is complete and will be installed on Monday.

These photo's are of the complete unit with the turn table.
The turn table drops down onto the 85mm solid shaft.  It has 3 plates:

  1. 10mm round (strengthener plate)
  2. 10mm rectangular  ( Cary plate for panels)
  3. 5mm round plate. Act as a "pull down plate".

The 24mm 12.9 bolt equals the strength of the 8 6mm 12.9 therefore doubling the Nm.

 

20191019_102108_resized.thumb.jpg.87664f99a75f83404571f84c29c05291.jpg20191019_102119_resized.thumb.jpg.bd9dccf98292a1dfdb60389931d20d68.jpg

Edited by Erastus

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Unit installed,

For those not been to see our mountain I added two photos. I have some some sealant that must dry then I will mount the frame with panels.


20191021_103604_resized.thumb.jpg.6a65ff1547ab28e8f0459ae52dd8062a.jpg20191021_103351_resized.thumb.jpg.2fa65bf30e103f8ffeed4af68555f4c2.jpg20191021_103421_resized.thumb.jpg.882338a50e9ef8462f5c55e27d833447.jpgalant (form a gasket ) that must dry then I will complete the job.

Edited by Erastus

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Today after the storms I did the mounting of the turntable. Tomorrow will do the mounting of the panels.
The mounting of the panels and frame should take +/- 30 minutes then we the commercial prototype is done.

Today I have placed an order for the more improved version of the production run. After I dealt with the people in SA I recon I will approached some other people to get it made for me and then bring a batch in via ship with another container of solar panels.

The small gear been on the roof for +/- 6 days and already rusted  🙄😀🙄

The table is torqued at 140Nm.   The bearings are doing very well under that strain and I can still turn the table with my fingers.

The blue pipe in the back is my neighbor and my water plant from sea water to fresh water.  So the council inspector was very upset and an email was send to me that I am not allowed to use sea water because what will we do if the sea dries up.

Now to get all up and running again.

20191031_152359_resized.jpg

20191031_152407_resized.jpg

Edited by Erastus

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1 hour ago, Erastus said:

Today after the storms I did the mounting of the turntable. Tomorrow will do the mounting of the panels.
The mounting of the panels and frame should take +/- 30 minutes then we the commercial prototype is done.

Today I have placed an order for the more improved version of the production run. After I dealt with the people in SA I recon I will approached some other people to get it made for me and then bring a batch in via ship with another container of solar panels.

The small gear been on the roof for +/- 6 days and already rusted  🙄😀🙄

The table is torqued at 140Nm.   The bearings are doing very well under that strain and I can still turn the table with my fingers.

The blue pipe in the back is my neighbor and my water plant from sea water to fresh water.  So the council inspector was very upset and an email was send to me that I am not allowed to use sea water because what will we do if the sea dries up.

Now to get all up and running again.

20191031_152359_resized.jpg

20191031_152407_resized.jpg

you are joking, aren't you ?

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Not at all. What I did is to drill deeper wholes that created a flow of water into my "pipes" and then I fill my koi pond that is the reservoir.  The water I pump into the pump has a slat content and funny enough the fish is ok with it.

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LOL, i can understand why the  CT inspectors are concerned. You and your neighbor are not joking, you'll desalinate whole ocean for yourselves . Very selfish from you, no doubt about that. I understand why we have to have all those  inspectors on our backs . 😀

Edited by ibiza

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On 2019/10/31 at 5:35 PM, ibiza said:

The small gear been on the roof for +/- 6 days and already rusted 

That bearing looks like its from a ship wreck😁

I use cold galvanizing spray at my south coast pozzie on my gate wheels and steel parts and it works wonders, I recently had to replace parts on my gate that I installed in 2006 and the galv spray was still intact but the steelwork inside was missing.

That gear of yours could do with a bit of that medicine.😎

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Buy bearings which are enclosed.

Use the grease recommended by the USA military.

Lithium grease worked well for me on underground conveyor idler bearings as it could handle water.

Did a lot of research on it about 30 years ago. So my knowledge is ancient lol.

 

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3 hours ago, Johandup said:

Lithium grease

That stuff is awesome. I bought a can of that ages ago to repair a BMW window regulator. You zip-tie the stupid cable-pull systems into the bracket that it tends to break out of... the you lubricate the rails with the lithium grease. Man.... I'm so glad that car is gone.

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Yes, indeed.

Like many on the forum I would really like to know progress on the system.

And to learn more about your inverter design.

Thanks and good wishes!

 

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Saw this system which reminded me of this thread.

Presume it is also a solar tracker although not working since the sun is shining on the back of it.

Solar tracker.jpg

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