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View Full Version : Battery thread takeoff ~ Solar Chargers



Razzman
04-22-2009, 12:33 PM
Ok so that we don't totally trash the battery thread, someone asked where to get solar chargers. Sunforce makes some nice ones rated for outdoor use for a reasonable price. Cabelas sells Sunforce and others to at a good price.

Sunforce (http://www.sunforceproducts.com/)
Cabelas Solar Chargers (http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/index/index-display.jsp?cmCat=MainCatcat21276-cat601333&id=cat600057)

I will be adding these to mine this year, tired of dragging the batts out!

c.rix
04-22-2009, 05:20 PM
Here in Minnesota they have them at Northren tool and supply in all different sizes and styles
http://www.northerntool.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/NTESearch?storeId=6970&N=0&Ntk=All&Ntt=solar%20charger&Nty=1&D=solar%20charger&Ntx=mode+matchallpartial&Dx=mode+matchallpartial

Sled491
04-23-2009, 05:36 PM
So if you boat is sitting on a lift all the time would you mount the panel to the canopy frame and then run the leads into the boat under the cover during off time?

Razzman
04-23-2009, 06:17 PM
So if you boat is sitting on a lift all the time would you mount the panel to the canopy frame and then run the leads into the boat under the cover during off time?

That's exactly how it's done. I'll be adding quick connect harnesses so i can connect in seconds instead of opening the boxes and such.

Sled491
04-23-2009, 06:59 PM
OK so what size would you use? It also seems I would be able to power my 12v lift motor with one of these as opposed to running a jumper into my boat or having a battery with tray on my dock.

Razzman
04-23-2009, 07:17 PM
Ya know i can't speak for the lift but for the charging i'm going with the small unit as it would be the same as a trickle charger.

Sled491
04-23-2009, 08:36 PM
I only bring it up as it would kill 2 birds with one stone, and while looking at the ones from Northern and reading the reviews a guy mentions using it to open an automatic gate, so I thought hey why not!

Waynes345
04-24-2009, 12:06 PM
My buddiy's lift has a 12v motor with battery and solar charger. The charge plate is no bigger than the battery. I assume it is a trickle charge. My wife gave me a "coupon" at Christmas for adding a motor and battery to mine. I'll be setting that up shortly. Our slip has a short dock and I can't get good leverage, I'm tired of cranking by hand.

The ShoreStation solar panel battery charger is $400 with 20 watts. Got to be a cheaper way.

Sled491
04-24-2009, 01:49 PM
See that's what I'm saying. Its 700 for the motor, and if I can add one of these aftermarket solar panels for under 100 I'd be happy

Waynes345
06-16-2009, 05:29 PM
Hey guys, has anybody added a battery and solar charger to their 12v lift motor? I'm getting a motor for my lift this weekend and the dealer wouldn't even look up the battery options as he said it was overkill and everyone simply runs off the boat battery. Well, I've only got one battery in my boat and would rather have a battery and charger on the lift. I've been poking around and can get a SunForce 15W solar panel with cables and a 7W charge controller for $99 at Menard's and a battery for $65 from Cost-co and with stuff to make a mount, battery box, etc, I'm still under $200. I'm checking to see if anyone has real world experience or advice. Thanks.

Sled491
06-16-2009, 07:35 PM
See I had the same question except I wanted to not use the battery, just the solar panel. On your only one battery thing, back in the day we only had the one battery in the Nautique and we used it for the lift and never had a problem.

I'm with you on this one though. After cranking my boat up and down by hand this weekend I'm about done with that crap:( Let me know what you got for a motor. I'm looking at one that replaces the whole gear case and wheel for about 700.00. My buddy has the one that rides your wheel and I'm not a fan.

maxpower220
06-16-2009, 08:52 PM
I just install the canopy and the lift motor for my Hewitt lift. I am using the only battery in the boat to run the lift and it works quite well. I am skiing every other day, so it doesn't sit too long. The motor was cheap from Overtons with a 15% discount and free shipping, I couldn't pass it up. It doesn't go up or down fast, but it is so much better than hand cranking.
You won't find a reasonably priced solar panel that will run the motor. The battery set up is the way to go. I thought I was going to do that, but I am cheap and the boat battery works great.
Hope this helps.

jmvotto
06-16-2009, 09:23 PM
sled, what kind of hoist? my great lakes hoist I have a 110 v direct drive motor, I have a key fab i can raise or lower from the boat or the house 300ft range it also had a 12v battery and solar panel option very pricey. i ran electrical down the edge of the dock from a gfi, unplug it when not in use at both ends.


http://moomba.com/msgboard/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=111

Waynes345
06-16-2009, 10:36 PM
You won't find a reasonably priced solar panel that will run the motor. The battery set up is the way to go. I thought I was going to do that, but I am cheap and the boat battery works great.
Hope this helps.

Thanks for the feedback. I'm not planning on running the motor off the solar panel, just charging a battery with it. I'm not hand cranking anymore. We've got short floating docks and I have to lean out to crank. Pain in the rear. It seems to me that having to pull the cable in and out of the boat would be a pain as well, but maybe I'm making more of it than necessary. I should have it installed this weekend. It's the add on motor to an existing Shore-Station lift so I hope it works well. Got to be better than hand cranking. On the other hand, hand cranking onto the lift is way better than trailering every weekend, so I continue to make progress...

zabooda
06-17-2009, 12:17 AM
I run my trickle charger through the cigarette lighter. I would recommend a trickle type photovoltaic (PV) with a matching controller for weekend use and the occasional week vacation. If you run out of juice you can jump it or if you have a dual battery system you can charge the lift battery to the level of your backup and recharge the backup when you take off. Boy, have technology changed things. You can put up LED dock lights that run off of PVs and batteries.

maxpower220
06-17-2009, 09:11 AM
You can run the wiring under the inside of your boat and have it next the the drive (not much showing). The pigtail from the lift motor is long enough to reach into the boat. It really can be hidden well.

Sled491
06-19-2009, 09:18 AM
Max your set up looks sooo much like mine. We have an octagon at the end of our pier so between the wheel and the cut back of the octagon there isn't much room to get in and out of the boat. Do you have the same problems? I'm thinking of adding an L around the front and down the other side to assist in entering and exiting. By the way what did that motor set up run?

JV I love your system, I'm just too cheap to spend that kind of money. If I was not worried about money, or it was no object I'd go with one of those new Hydraulic lifts! However at the last boat show with canopy and all the other goodies they were running about 7K:(

Waynes, your right boat on a lift still trumps trailering any day:)