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Interesting Solar Panel Tonneau Cover


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That should keep your battery charged... 😎

Is the headache rack integral with the bed rails/frame? It looks like it might be. 

Also, I'm wondering if you carry a battery bank in the truck, or just use this for a plug in supplement for other equipment (travel trailer). It would seem wasteful to not collect and store energy all the time. 

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  • 1 month later...

As we wait for such products to hit the market,  I saw this DIY system by some full timer's and YouTubers.
They started with a Casita that didn't have solar so the truck was their main solar bank.

They have a shortbed truck with a canopy and set up for extended boondocking.

Within the bed under the canopy they have:

1) Decked Storage system as a platform for tools and other supplies.
2) Front of bed - 2 extra cross bed fresh water + an extension tube leading to the tailgate area as a rear fill/empty port.)
3) Mid Bed - Within an insulated box -  Solar Controllers and Batteries hooked up to 600W solar
4) Rear of bed - 12V/110V Compressor Chest Refrigerator

Solar setup Includes:
600W Solar on Roof of Pickup Canopy
3kW Inverter + On/Off Switch and outlets
30Amp connector so they can plug in the trailer directly.
Victron MPPT Controller + Bluetooth Shunt (for reading battery state on phone app.)
2 - Battleborn 100 Ah 12V LiFePO4

Pretty complete boon-docking setup.




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2019 Elite II (Hull 505 - Galway Girl - August 7, 2019 Delivery) 
Tow Vehicle: 2021 F350 King Ranch, FX4, MaxTow Package, 10 Speed, 3.55 Rear Axle
Batteries Upgrade: Dual 315GTX Lithionics Lithiums - 630AH Total
Inverter/Charger: Xantrex 2000Pro 

Travel BLOG:  https://4-ever-hitched.com



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We used a similar but not as elaborate setup with our previous TV.  Two 80 Watt panels on Thule load bars on the truck cap.  Since we camp under trees a lot, it was nice to be able to park the truck in the open to recharge.  We are looking to do the same with the GMC 2500. 

We used a 30 gal Valterra tank for water.  8x16x60 size from the tanks at the link below.  The tank was rectangular so it took up minimal space at the front of the truck bed.


RV and Truck 2009_1.jpg

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2018 LE2 STD #365

2018 GMC 2500HD SLT Duramax 4x4

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This may not be the right thread for this question, but here goes: I understand that the LE2 built-in solar charge controller won't control charge from external panels; it will only handle the charge from the built-in rooftop panels.  External panels need their own controllers.  So, is there a problem if there are multiple charging streams to the lithium batteries from multiple external portable panels, truck topper panels, etc., each with their own controllers?  Where is the "gatekeeper" to ensure that the batteries are not overcharged from multiple sources?  In our current camper (LE2 on order), the charge controller controls the charge from external walk-about panels (no additional controllers necessary).

2021 Oliver LE2
Ram 2500 diesel

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