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Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 1:08 pm
by 11.5 volts

Two smallish batteries because I will often walk with this stuff to friends places nearby and anything much bigger than 20-25 amp hours will be too heavy to take without complaining (and sometimes take one only instead).

I could actually just use my existing small battery and get a slightly bigger one and just use the existing panel for charging both of them but I guess I just want a couple of small panels, a couple of small batteries and use them more frequently.

The twenty watt pedal generator will likely not be used often. yeah it would be not worth it much of the time but half hour peddling in the morning and half hour at night would be ok. I thought about a much larger one but they cost too much for the likely little use and also lack of space. I discounted the 10 watt cougar ones for not having enough output. The company about to sell the 20 watt ones also makes a 10 watt hand powered one already...again too small an output. They are thinking about a 30 watt or so pedal generator and that would be much better but for a day without solar power 20 watts might be just enough for me.....likely to end up in the closet with all the other "bright" idea stuff though.

My 50 watt panel is probably less than 30 watts much of the does not quite open flat so in addition to normal loses and using a cheap built in charge controller will never be all in the same plane to the sun.

I am now looking at a couple of 130 watt 12 volt panels paralelled (one in the next few weeks and one in a few months...using them together without a battery (or trying it) but otherwise just use one each with a pan and small battery and maybe give the 50 watt panel to a friend.

Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Thu Oct 20, 2011 9:57 pm
by LaurieClayton
Thanks everybody! I've never had of a solar frypan. If it is so good I should use it for camping.

Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 5:05 am
by 11.5 volts

It would be great for camping.

I used it for lunch yesterday. Took a bit longer as It was stuffed full of some fairly sizeable chunks of meat (enough for two largish sandwiches). Works so well that I am using it beyond camping and BBQs and emergencies and will use it often at on the table instead of at the stove.

For camping for a weekend would be just the thing....a small solar panel of 30-50 watts, a small battery of as little as 7-12 amp hours, a fry pan (also saucepans are available and things like slow cookers) and a lead with battery clips at one end and a 12 volt cigarette plug at the other takes up very little room....edit oh and a small plug in volt meter to keep an eye on the battery.

Throw in a small water heater (mine is about 200 watts and takes around 7 minutes to boil an oversize mug for vegies and instant potato) and you can have a pretty reasonable meal for not too many watt hours. Maybe have the water warming in a plastic food container in the sun for a while first to save power (less temp rise needed).
That would be about the limit of walk in camping for me though...any more and the battery would be getting too heavy....for a car campsite would be ok.

Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:42 am
by Gordon-Loomberah
11.5 volts wrote:a small battery of as little as 7-12 amp hours, ...

Have you thought about a NiMH battery instead? Much lighter and can be just about fully discharged without damage, unlike Lead-acid batteries. You do need to charge it properly though. LiPo is even lighter, but very expensive.

Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 2:51 pm
by 11.5 volts

No I had not thought about Nimh. Thanks for the idea....

I use lots of Nimh AA batteries for my radio, a few cameras and a light. Also a led torch I have has a nimh pack in it (if the pack was replaaceable would be just about perfect for me).....all these I charge off my 5 watt panel.

I have been looking but can not find a Nimh pack to suit and the few I have found are a bit AGM 7.2ah is about $30 from a shop a block away. I guess I will just use AGM smallish size batteries for now but keep looking for a good Nimh.

I would LOVE one of those 95AH Nimh batteries used in the electric RAV4 car in the US but they breached patent laws so are not made anymore (not many cars made and most crushed).

Regards my quest to cook direct from solar panels, I guess I am just going to get a couple of mid size panels or one larger panel of as low a voltage as possibe....most ebay ones seem to have slightly higher max operating voltage than store ones. I will then try it and see (and hopefully not fry my frying pan).

if it does NOT work, then I will maybe take my time and look for a few of the larger self regulating panels to run in paralell....around 46 watts seems to be the largest I can find reference to.

I can not believe there is not ANY market for mid size self regulating panels.

Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2011 8:15 am
by 11.5 volts
Another issue to consider.

My 12 volt fry pan has a Masterflon (trademark) coating which I am assuming is a teflon type coating.

I do not want to use too high a voltage as that might be a problem with releasing carcinogens....may not but who knows.

I will still give it a go soon but what direction to go i am still looking/considering.

Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Mon Nov 21, 2011 6:18 am
by Tracker
11.5 volts wrote:Maybe I should get two smaller 17 volt panels and paralell them??

Two smaller panels together are exactly the same as one big one. The only advantage is portability.

I must say that I really can't see where this is going... So, you know from all that has been said, that you have a 12V pan and it draws about 200W, and that without some form of power optimisation, then you will only get about 60% of the power from a 17V panel system, and thus you will need more panels to compensate.

SOooo, you are going to need 350 to 400W of panels and the base cost is likely to be about $1.50 Watt..
SOoooooo, we are not looking at spending about $500 in order to fry an egg... :roll:

Now, if your REALLY interested in the environment then consider.... you have bought panels that cost $500 and created much pollution in their manufacture, and you are not going to use them constantly to generate power and thus reduce OTHER energy-producing pollution..

As I said - this is going nowhere ! It's a no-brainer ! Very cute, but very dumb ! :oops:

If you need to cook an occasional egg, then get a bigger battery and use the smaller panels, and thus you can store the energy..
You will need a charge regulator to protect the battery . Connecting a 12V battery to a 17V panel for a long time WILL destroy the battery.. Likewise, leaving it discharged will do similar.

You could get some cheap chargers from the likes of Oatley Electronics, and you could likely pick up a fair battery at a truck battery supplier.

Re: Solar cooking with a 12V frypan

PostPosted: Sun Feb 12, 2012 3:21 pm
by 11.5 volts

I have finally got a larger solar panel.

I also got a cheap 12 volt Dick Smith stove.

Now the panel i purchased is 200 watts 18 volts and 11.2 amps (supposedly).

I do not know what the frypan uses but it is more than 134 watts max this panel SHOULD put out.

I went with this over a 240 watt 12 volt panel for two reasons.

A) I am cheap and broke this was $288 posted.

B) The 12 volt stove uses 10 amps at 12 volts

So, I was hoping BOTH would work, the frypan a little slow and the stove about right.

to cut to the chase.

The frypan did not work (yet anyway) BUT
The Dick smith stove DOES!!!!

That means I can cook, with a portable stove, without fuel without batteries.

I have not cooked a meal yet.....will leave that for the right occassion (I just put a small peice of meat in and left it.....nowhere near long enough to cook but enough to get a hot enough temp to cook.

the stove is fused (frypan is not).

I will cook with the stove soon and try the fry pan with this panel and my 50 watt one together.

Oh and if anyone IS worried about the voltage being to high (which MAY an issue with the fry pan)

Why not just use Voltage drop as your freind with the right length/gauge of wire!

This could change the world if someone not so Homer Simpson like gets involved.