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Old 07-27-2008, 10:12 PM   #3 (permalink)
cfg83
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Southern California
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1999 Saturn SW2 - '99 Saturn SW2 Wagon
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90 day: 40.49 mpg (US)
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MetroMPG -

Blackjackal and I were talking about this today. How about this scenario :

1 - Voltmeter to monitor battery charge.

2 - Switch to turn off/on the alternator at will (I know this is doable in a Saturn S-Series).

3 - Large solar panel that can be used to recharge the battery while at work. Panel would not be deployed unless you were at work.

Assuming the above works (big assumption), then the scenario would be an alternator "recharger" that is deployed when you get to work. That way, there would be no aero penalty.

Benefits:

a - You could have a smaller solar panel that does the same as a "trickle charge". I am not talking about the 6"x12" panels or the VW panel. I am talking about a "marine battery application" style solar panel.

b - The voltmeter could allow you to make an "intelligent choice" when it comes to activating the alternator.

Problems:

a - I don't know if you need special "in between" electronics to keep the battery from being damaged. Maybe you do, maybe you don't, maybe it depends on the panel?!?!?!

CarloSW2
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