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Large 250W solar panel for camping

April 12, 2019 — BarryK

I wrote about a 100 watt flexible panel, tested in 2017:

http://bkhome.org/light/off-the-grid-camping-trip-2017.html

Now getting setup for extended camping trips, in the spirit of being one of those "grey nomads", and taking another look at the solar panel requirement.

That "100W" flexible panel, yeah, I was only getting 2 amps out of it. Was so disappointed in it, never bothered to do any further testing, and it just got stored in the shed. Yesterday, I was reminded of it by this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-sc4rlV93g

...that guy is in my home State, WA, and he purchased one of the panels, the expensive one, from a well-known retailer in Perth, WA.

Very interesting that his el-cheapo panel, that he ordered off the Internet, performed so well. He mentioned that it is a "Sunyee" panel. Yes, that is an Australian on-line site:

https://www.sunyee.com.au/

I was curious to know who that chap is, who posted that video. Followed the links:

G'day guys, thanks for stopping by! Who am I? Nobody really, but I do love being in the great outdoors whenever I can get away from the grind. Ever since I bought my first camera I have enjoyed creating short videos, more recently I have been filming my 4wding and outdoor adventures and sharing them with the world. My Mazda Bt50 (Cyan) gets me around WA and sometimes friends tag along for the journey too. I hope you guys enjoy the channel and have a laugh or two 👍. Thanks, Michael

Michael, I liked your video, and the others look great too!

In response to some of the comments on the youtube site, just measuring current is probably OK. As long as the panels have the same number of cells. Using the cheaper PWM regulator is probably the closer comparison.

Anyway, about the 250W panel...

250W folding panel

I own a 120W folding panel, but it is extremely heavy. I have a bad back, and this was what motivated me to buy the 100W flexible panel. The WA Camping and Caravanning show was on recently, and I got to see a new range of light-weight folding panels. The "250W" panel is very light, just 8Kg.

The heavy folding panel and the flexible panel will probably be going cheap soon at a garage sale, and maybe I will have moved on to one of these new light folding panels. Sunyee sell them, and with a discount voucher, the price including delivery, is AU$288.

img1

So, have ordered it.

https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/NEW-160W-200W-250W-300W-FOLDING-SOLAR-PANEL-KIT-12V-MONO-CARAVAN-BOAT-CAMPING/392192649390

Except, I ordered mine from a company called "vicoffroad":

https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Folding-Solar-Panel-12V-160W-200W-250W-Mono-Camping-Battery-Charging-Kit/253742540342

...looks like the same thing, same price.

Most intrigued, quite a small panel for the claimed 250W. We don't expect that much anyway, at best 75% of what they claim. Eagerly waiting to test it! 

Tags: light