Somebody posted that white powder comes off for ten years and then all that is left is a black roof.
Makes sense, if this is oxidizing, i.e. slow disappearance of the white coat. The "white EPDM" is actually black on one side, so the white surface is a paint. When all the paint is gone, you see the real black color. Thorough cleaning on that small area for the bracket brought up some black dots where the white paint has worn thin.
Trying to clean the EPDM coat for installing solar panel mounts, with roof sealant under the mounts. With tapping screws into the roof plywood and rafters.
The white "paint" doesn't look like a paint at all. Rub it with a wet rug - the rug turns white.
Rub it with Methanol aka Methyl alcohol - same story.
Put on a Scotch tape for the night, to cover the drilled out pilot holes for tapping screws for the night - the tape picks up the whitish stuff. Repeat it again with tape - same story.
To get a good adhesion with a sealant, the EPDM should be clean. Whitish stuff coming off means that the sealant might come off with it.
Should I hit it with Acetone, or what?
The trailer is relatively new, 2 years, and the dealer might have put some wax or other cr-ap on it, to make it look nicer, but after washing with water and alcohol it's still there. And it's "powdery", not "waxy". Comes off on wet fingers. I'm trying not to walk much on it, and mostly crawl on all four, and my black jeans are white on the knees after crawling around, even on a dry surface.
Is this normal, any ideas?
I've checked those gaps again - when drilling for another bracket - the gap is less than 1/8". So I will go with your suggestion, 1.5" screws, this will give me 3/4" grip in the stud alone, plus 1/2" grip in the particle board. So the screw will not go the last 1/4" or so in the stud.
The pilot hole will still penetrate the 1.1/8" stud completely. It's difficult to calculate precisely the length of the pilot hole required, when the gap is known only approximately.
The manufacturer only sent me a drawing with 1.1/8 studs thickness, 1.1/2 width, and their approximate location. I call them "studs" because this is the top part of the rafter, it is arched, and the bottom part of the rafter is flat (where interior ceiling panels are attached).
2.5" screws I chose based on the fact that total thickness of metal bracket foot + particle board + stud = 1.3/4". Also, the bracket foot is flat but the roof is arched upwards, so there were small gaps between the bracket foot and the roof. Though, these gaps under the bracket foot had disappeared when I tightened the screws in studs and flattened the particle board under the bracket. The screw go all the way through 1.1/4" stud, so I guess it doesn't matter whether they
are 1.3/4" or 2.5".
Yes, I pre-drilled 3/32" pilot holes all the way through the stud as recommended for "softwood", which is a particle board. For a "hardwood" it's recommended 7/64" pilot, but I don't know how "hard" is the stud. Could be just a regular pine board. The root of #10 tapping screw is 1/8", and in the woodworking blogs the opinion is not to drill any pilots when the root is less than 1/8".
Since the screw goes through the stud anyway, it doesn't matter how long it is. Photo - sorry, don't know how to resize it on Skydrive.
The bracket is 6" long, parallel to the back of the trailer. 3 screws in the stud and 2 just in particle board (those are 1/2" long).
Installing aluminum brackets for solar panels. Big heavy panels, 1/4" thick angles for brackets. Driving #10 wood screws into the roof, with roof sealant under the brackets. Like others before me. Nothing unusual.
Roof structure: EPDM on 3/8" particle board, with 1.1/2 wood studs, each stud 1.1/8" thick according to manufacturer's drawing that they emailed me (thickness of the particle board I found myself when removing TV antenna).
What is unusual:
When drilling pilot holes, I found that there was a gap between the stud and particle board, ~1/8" or 1/4". This in itself is not unusual - guys arched the stud at the crown, drove the screws close to the side walls but no screws at the crown, so it's arched and created a gap at the crown more then at the side walls.
Now, THIS is odd for somebody who is not a carpenter. Driving my #10 screws in, to attach the brackets. Tightened the screws until it stopped, one by one. The last screw is in, I go to the 1st one - and can tighten it some more. And then - other 2, and then again and again. Eventually I've managed to tighten the stud screws another 2-3 rounds after they were "tight". Screws have slotted hex heads, with the hex socket you can tighten it a lot more than with a flat screwdriver. I didn't use a wrench, just a screwdriver with assorted bits, so there was no lever.
This did NOT happen where there was no stud underneath (I drove a few screws into particle board next to the stud as well).
I think what happened was that I pulled the particle board closer to the stud, closing the gap. #10 screws are 2.5" long so they go through the stud completely.
Now, my question: should I be doing this? I mean, tightening it THAT much. Pulling the stud and plywood together and closing the gap, I've created a pressure that is trying to pry the stud and plywood apart, and potentially - pull #10 screw out of the stud a little. Screw went ~1/4" below the stud before I closed the gap, now without the gap it's 1/2" below the stud, so it won't pull out completely. The bracket sits now very tight, but I'm having doubts.
Promise to post all the pics after I'm done. I'm not home, internet in this location is a problem.
Oh yeah, and forget the stud finders if you do this. They don't see wood studs under 3/8" particle board.
Mex, I wish that option was available :)... These days, you just carry booster cables and hope for mercy of others. And, in these parts - a rope to tow it with another truck. Yes, on the rope, this is how they do it, Mexican way.
Meanwhile, 3 AGM + 1 half-dead starter dropped down to 0.8A Float. Made a typo earlier, sorry - the current to transition to Float was set 3.5A, not 1.5A.
This is odd. Following the advice by SMK, I hooked up dying flooded starter to solar charger and 245W panel. Yes sir, AGM and flooded in parallel to one charger.
3 AGM before this were floating at 13.6V for 3 days and came down to <1A current.
Dying starter before this (when tried to charge separately) was sitting at permanent ABS stage for 2 days, 14.4V and current gradually dropping to 0.5A, and solar charger hated this battery and was switching back and forth between ABS and bulk mode. Rest overnight Voc (before today's experiment) was 12.45.
Didn't change Bulk-ABS 14.6V setpoint. Didn't change ABS-Float 13.6 V setpoint. Changed Float current setpoint to 1.5A (1+0.5=1.5).
In parallel, 3 good + 1 bad: as if bad one wasn't even there. Started with bulk, raised quickly to 14.6, transitioned to ABS, then dropped quickly to 13.6 Float setpoint, and went into Float. All 4 are peacefully floating now at 13.6. No erratic behavior of the charger (no switching ABS/Float every minute). The only minor difference is that current is now 1.5A, which makes sense as 3 good batts were at 1A and one bad - at 0.5A.
Will see what happens.
Mex, pure led battery with 1% a month discharge - this is even better than AGM starter. Must cost a fortune. Could have bought AGM starter for $200 before driving South. The dirty secret is that I don't plan to keep the truck. A season, maybe two, and then off it goes to some local ranchero/pescadero for a few hundred bucks and a bag of rice ;)... Until then, I need to maintain it on cheap.
I use 2 Coleman 9-watt panels for maintaining my batteries during the winters here in Minnesota. One for the starting battery, and the other for the pair of T-105's. No controllers needed. I have no shore-power.
Yeah, but the SMALLEST panel on the neighbor's shack is 80-watt :)...
As long as you are stationary I would use a small jumper to allow the solar to give it a boost for a few weeks.
My 3 almost-new house AGMs are floating on solar. This dying starter batt behaved odd when I put it on same solar charger, I wrote about that. Connecting it in parallel to 3 good AGMs while those are floating, confusing solar charger with two different types of batts, of which one doesn't accept charge properly? Sounds scary...
MNtundraRet - my apologies. I did read your reply, and know that this battery is dying (a matter of when, not if). Buying here anything more complicated than nails is not desirable. If I will buy a new one, it will be for my next winter here, then I will try and preserve it better, though long-term storage still poses a problem.
I think I need a $10 solar charger from Ebay, to keep this or new battery in long storage on my neighbor's solar panel. Have a panel and a $500 charger, but don't want to run all this in trailer in my absence, while neighbor leaves his batts on solar in a shack. 2 solar chargers to 2 different batteries from one array.
People, consider the front panel display of 3048 a freebee. Since removing it would only lower the price by $20, I would rather have it there. There is a good chance that it will be useful in my install in a storage close to the hatch where I could see it and push the buttons when needed. If this won't work for me and I will have to get a remote, $20 is a low surcharge for a "double steering".
When there was interruption in production while transitioning from 3024 to 3048 model, I was considering Morningar 45 and it wouldn't be a desirable solution because MS 45 DOES need a display, either on-board or remote (they offer both), plus a few bucks for voltage sense wire. I recall that with a front-panel display the cost was almost $100 higher than Rogue 3024 also with front display, and reportedly 2-line MS display was not too informative and it was not clear whether with a display I would still have to use DIP switches to play with setpoints. Right now, more expensive Rogue 3048 is still cheaper than MS 45 with front display. Less amps, yes, but I didn't need more amps.
screwed the prices by $100. Morningstar 45 with front display was ~$200 more than older Rogue 3024, and $140 more than new Rogue 3048. More amps, not a close analog, and it was #2 on my list. I like more amps, even when panels can't harvest them :)... Bluesky SB3024 was closer to the older Rogue 3024 in terms of features, but with added temp sensor, even without any display it already cost more than older/cheaper Rogue. To new Rogue that Bluesky can't be compared (and still costs more). In this power range and with these features/options Rogue is the cheapest. Don (Pianotuna) told me this a while ago, I looked all around and came to same conclusion.
Salvo, $25 PWM differs from Rogue and Morningstar MPPT in more ways than just price. It's like comparing Ford Tempo and Toyota or VW of the same vintage. Turnigy meter is an inexpensive solution but it's not the same as proper remote display with controls or a battery monitor.
When parked for 3 days with no loads it goes from 12.65 to 12.45. 8% a day, I told you. 2.5W solar trickle charger that I have, can't pull that much in. 490W solar - yes, this is what is keeping it alive (and alternator when driving). Will see if prolonged charging would help.
SMK, I guess by jumper you mean any low-amp charger, not a jump-start box. I can hook it up to solar controller for a week, no problem.
Mexicowanderer - are there any tricks to desulfating other than to put it on a charger or "bateria mantenador" for a while? Hate buying technical stuff here, it's all imported, store inventory is tracked in $US and sold in pesos with hefty markup 'cause peso is unstable.
If you're using the battery sense wires and you want a 14.6 setpoint, you set it for 14.6v.
...the setpoint precision and the display precision are two different things
I knew it, I knew it! Beat the BFL...
I may explore on the next production run. Stainless is also an option.
Oh well, you should poll the mass of RV-ing DWs on that. Stainless is popular in kitchen appliances, but controller can't be brought in front of guests like a shiny coffee pot (and even if it could, neither DW nor an average guest would be able to comment on it), so probably it should remain unobtrusive. Like a meter or a lid on the breaker panel.
For me, - into the closet it goes, aka "front storage of trailer". Not for looks, but because it's clicking when transitioning from bulk to absorb to float, which is not even every hour but I don't want my afternoon nap interrupted. A big closet, ~35 cu.ft, mostly empty, with batteries and some scrap. Can open the access hatch and have a look at display, if need be.
I wrote briefly in another topic. 5 years old, left in a warm climate for 8 months with terminals disconnected. Upon return found it completely discharged, Voc=11.86. Multimeter "might" read lower than it is, but 8 months is enough for a complete self-discharge anyway. Water was 1/8" below the plates, added water to the mark.
Charged until current dropped to 0.5A, which is just about right - don't know the capacity in AH, they never tell this on starter batts, but by the size and weight ~40 AH.
Could only raise the charging voltage to 14.4, then it went into absorption stage (setpoint was 14.6, but it didn't want to raise it that high).
Tried to equalize at 15.5V, but it wouldn't raise the voltage over 14.7, so equalization is now "new absorption".
Wintering in Mexico away from civilization - though with solar power - I wonder what can be done and what to expect.
Buy Trik-L-Charge? Not sure that local village store would even know what this is, and it won't let me stray too far from the solar panels and my rig. When not driving, it's losing charge at the rate ~8% A DAY. Can buy a new battery, but if I leave it again for 8 months I might as well buy it next winter. Questions:
1) What can be done to restore it a little - prolonged charging, desulfators, snake oil?
2) It runs the truck, but how dangerous is to drive with such a battery, can it just fail down on me on the road?
3) Will try and find some maintenance option for the next long storage, but what if I leave it again for 8 months - will it degrade so badly that wouldn't accept charge at all?
I think removing the display with all the buttons would lower the price by what Rogue remote monitor costs, about $100 as I recall. Didn't matter to me, and still doesn't - too much - as there is no need to look at the Rogue display more often than once a day, if even that. A monitor even as good and informative as on the Rogue, won't provide as much information as a dedicated battery monitor, so - yes, it's better to get a display-less controller and a good monitor, but this would cost a bit more than a controller with on-board display. So for those penniless but wanting a good controller the current iteration of Rogue will do.
I can understand DW not wanting such piece of equipment inside, and would rather prefer black enclosure of the previous model, it blends in the interior better. With space constraints of an average rig anything bigger than 4x4" flat monitor panel is too big. Wires can be hidden in wire raceway for a foot or two needed from the wall to controller.
BFL... Different wire length and different voltage drops can NOT cause different readings of controller display VS multimeter. Controller has a voltage sense wire that eliminates the voltage drop and makes controller see the voltage as if it were clamped on the battery terminals. Or is supposed to eliminate. Multimeter has regular leads about 3ft each, they are not supposed to cause 0.1V drop as the meter draws very low current, and even if they would cause the drop, the meter would read HIGHER than the battery terminals or than the Rogue, but it reads lower. Will try and check the meter properly upon return to civilization, and until then will leave it as is.
The controller won't transition to float based on battery current if it's unable to hold the battery voltage at the absorb setpoint (as appears to be the case with that old battery). It should transition when the timer expires, though, regardless of current...
...The controller may also attempt to see if there's a new MPP during absorb or float if circumstances cause it to bump up against the last measured MPP, but I don't think that's what you're seeing.
Does this mean that it will be doing MPP step-up every 1-2 minutes after it had transitioned into ABS 14.4 and is staying in ABS at 14.4? Is it sweeping constantly because is trying to raise the voltage to 14.6 while already in ABS?
This all is only for me to understand the algorithm better. It doesn't do any of those odd things with a battery in good condition.