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Old 09-22-2009, 07:51 PM   This thread is in the EcoModder Project Library | #1 (permalink)
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Paseo gets a solar sun roof

Well, gascort showed us all up with his fancy solar roof, so I had to do something about that.

I just purchased these: 36-3x3 solar cells .5v 2 amp 16% eff. tabbed WOW!!!! - eBay (item 250497687231 end time Sep-22-09 18:05:03 PDT)

They won't put out near the power that gascort has on his car, but they should be more than enough to kart me back and forth to work once a week (actually, 3x a week if my calculations are anywhere near correct). They also JUST fit in the area directly under my sunroof. The total power generated should be around 36W.

Alas, I have a delema. The underside of my sunroof has that black shade stuff on it. This is to provide some shade I'm sure. But, now its just getting in the way. Does anyone have any idea how I can get that stuff off of there? Its the black dotty/mesh stuff, not like a film tint.

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Old 09-22-2009, 11:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Here is a picture of the shade I was talking about. As you can see, it covers at least half of the area of the glass, so it really needs to be removed.

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Old 09-23-2009, 01:06 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Know how to polish glass? That's how you remove it.

It's a silk-screen application to the glass, so you can remove it with a razor scraper for the most part, but you'll have to lightly sand/polish the glass to completely remove them.

You may be better off getting a sheet of lexan, and cutting it to fit in the same space as your sunroof, or removing the sunroof altogether and making a pan that fits in the hole, putting the panels in the pan, and covering it with lexan.
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Old 09-23-2009, 02:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Nope, I'm not familiar with polishing glass.

Someone on another forum said carb cleaner will actually take the stuff off. Haven't tried it yet.
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Old 09-23-2009, 03:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Also, anyone have any ideas of what I could do with the extra power generated?

I was thinking of doing the Prius 2010 mod so it powers a fan in the summer time. However, in winter I could have a cabin heater, or just run it to the block heater or something I guess. Any ideas would be appreciated.
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I think you'll probably have luck with a fresh razor scraper and superfine steel wool to clean up the leftovers. I've used both on glass before and didn't scratch anything up.

As for the "surplus" power when you don't need to run the fan...

An extra battery for something makes more sense than "trickling" a block heater. Store it up and unleash it all at once would be more effective....

... or make a "power pack" that you could use to power something small in the house. Cell charger? Laptop charger? Bedtime reading light?
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:25 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Or... put an incandescent lightbulb inside at the base of the windshield and help keep your windshield warm so it doesn't frost up when you get inside.
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:43 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
Or... put an incandescent lightbulb inside at the base of the windshield and help keep your windshield warm so it doesn't frost up when you get inside.
I've never used carb cleaner on glass - I don't use it on much, actually... I don't like to use solvents any more than I have to.

I think, like Darin, your best luck will come with a Razor and some fine steel wool. You could also try a wet piece of sand paper, or cotton gauze with tooth paste in it. (Takes nearly the whole tube of tooth paste) to polish the glass.
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Old 09-23-2009, 04:54 PM   #9 (permalink)
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What voltage are you planning to set up? If I had 36W at 12V coming to me free, I'd be all over the fans to cool my parked car during the summer. A single 120mm diameter fan can move ~100cfm at 5.5W. Set one up blowing in and another blowing out and you can do a very good job at exchanging the air in your car.
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Old 09-23-2009, 05:06 PM   #10 (permalink)
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36 cells will give me 18V. I'll run it to some form of charge controller with a dump option. Someone on ER recently posted a link to a MPPT circuit which are known to boost generation by up to 30%. So, thats a real plus if I can build the circuit.

I wouldn't add any extra fans, just run the existing fan.

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