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Author Topic: Solar electric fence units?  (Read 4010 times)

Baois Glas

  • Joined Jun 2014
  • Ireland
Solar electric fence units?
« on: July 15, 2014, 08:33:24 am »
Has anyone used a solar electric unit for chickens and goats?

We are thinking of buying one and have been looking at the ones on the Rutland website. I prefer the 'look' of the ESS610, as it seems smaller and cheaper, but it isn't as powerful and says it isn't suitable for chickens and goats.

Anyone used it and was it any good? Or can you recommend another solar unit?
How many acres how much light
Tucked in the woods and out of sight
Talk to the neighbours and tip my cap
On a little road barely on the map
Voss Electric Fence

mab

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • carmarthenshire
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2014, 12:52:40 am »
not used that one but at 0.2 joules it does seem a bit weedy.


I've used a 1.6joule unit for sheep and chickens and pony and it seems effective - though looking at their prices I'd buy one of the wet battery types and buy a solar panel separately from someone cheaper (or a mains unit if practicable).

ladyK

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Conwy Valley
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2014, 10:18:54 am »
I've been wondering about just that: how do you connect a solar trickle charger (is it this what's needed?) to a wet battery fence unit?
"If one way is better than another, it is the way of nature." (Aristotle)

mab

  • Joined Mar 2009
  • carmarthenshire
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2014, 03:45:46 pm »
err... well, if you have, say, a 1.6J energiser like mine you need to decide how big a solar panel you need - Rutland seem to supply a 10w panel with their 1.6J kit so we'll take that as suitable (though I'd probably go for something bigger myself).


did a fleabay search and the first 10w panel that came up was this one:


http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NEW-10W-12v-Energy-Solar-Battery-Charger-TUV-ISO-Polycrystalline-2Kg-/261532080802?pt=UK_Gadgets&hash=item3ce486daa2


...which is 10w and comes with a 'blocking diode' (so the battery power doesn't leak back through the panel at night) and lead with croc clips. Like the energiser, you simply connect the croc clips to the battery terminals, positive (red) to positive; -ve to -ve (but avoid connecting to the energiser without the battery).


With a panel that size and a decent sized wet battery (80Ah or more) you can probably leave it at that - you may need to check/top up the battery electrolyte level occasionally over the summer as the battery will lose water when 'overcharged' but shouldn't come to any harm. If you do get a bigger panel or are using a smaller battery or a sealed 'gel' type battery then you should use a charge controller:
(again the first one that popped up):-


http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Solar-Charge-Controller-Panel-Battery-Regulator-Safe-10A-12V-24V-UK-STOCK-/360684563165?pt=UK_Gadgets&hash=item53fa79aadd


If you use one of these you just connect the solar panel to one pair of controller terminals, the battery to another pair and the 'load' (the energizer) to the third. The advantage of the controller is that you can use a bigger panel so it's more likely to hold up in the winter and you don't need to add a 'blocking diode' if your panel doesn't come with one, but it does make the wiring more complex and the controller will need to be protected from the elements.

County Dangler

  • Joined Aug 2013
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2014, 01:36:42 pm »
We set up a 12v electric fence system with a solar charger this year and it's worked faultlessly so far.

We bought a hotline falcon (enough to power 18km of fence!) a 110 a/hr twin post battery and a 30w solar panel kit with chrage controller.

It's easy to set up-connect the energiser up to the battery and the fence, then the solar panel into the charge controller and the charge controller to the spare posts on the battery. Then forget about it. We havn't touched ours since we set it up in March. For the pannel i rammed a 6' post into the ground, cut the top at 45 deg and mounted it to that. We aslo bought a large plastic box, big enough to house the energiser, battery and charge controller to keep them out of the weather.

Young Ed

  • Joined Apr 2014
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #5 on: July 17, 2014, 03:10:48 pm »
i would think 0.2 joules is too little for sheep? i am getting my first sheep next week  :fc: and am going to be using a 3 joule mains energizer, hope i don't fry them! :p
Cheers Ed

Backinwellies

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Sep 2012
  • Llandeilo Carmarthenshire
    • Nantygroes
    • Facebook
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #6 on: July 17, 2014, 08:23:14 pm »
, hope i don't fry them! :p
Cheers Ed

Always better roasted I find!!  :innocent:
Linda

Don't wrestle with pigs, they will love it and you will just get all muddy.

Let go of who you are and become who you are meant to be.

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ladyK

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Conwy Valley
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #7 on: July 17, 2014, 10:25:26 pm »
Thanks for all the detailed info.
Excuse my daftness but I still don't quite get where to connect the solar panel to - neither my energiser nor the battery have any 'spare' connections.  ???

"If one way is better than another, it is the way of nature." (Aristotle)

midtown

  • Joined Oct 2013
  • English Lake District
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2014, 12:31:58 am »
The battery has two terminals + & -. Some have a smaller terminal attached to each main terminal, some don't!
If your battery only has the two terminals, then connect the energiser + to + (positive) of the battery, and - to - (negative) of the battery.
The solar panel will also have a + and a - connection lead. These also connect to the battery in a similar fashion to the energiser lead, usually with crocodile clips which will go over or under the energiser crocodile clips when attached to the battery.

Putting it very simply, you may note a 'lump' within the solar panel leads. This effectively is a one way switch which will allow the electrical current to flow from the solar panel to the battery, but won't allow the current to flow from the battery in a reverse direction back up to the solar panel.

Hope that explains it simply, but if it will help, I could send you photos of the set-up.
Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so.  ~Douglas Adams

hughesy

  • Joined Feb 2010
  • Anglesey
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #9 on: July 18, 2014, 11:22:31 am »
You might also find that buying a spare battery which you can keep charged up on the mains, and swapping them over every now and then, is cheaper and less attractive to thieves than a solar set up.

ladyK

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Conwy Valley
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2014, 01:36:50 pm »
Thanks for the explanation MT! Basically just connect both clips (energizer & solar) to the same (appropriate) battery terminal - got it!  :thumbsup:

"If one way is better than another, it is the way of nature." (Aristotle)

midtown

  • Joined Oct 2013
  • English Lake District
Re: Solar electric fence units?
« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2014, 08:45:13 pm »
Thanks for the explanation MT! Basically just connect both clips (energizer & solar) to the same (appropriate) battery terminal - got it!  :thumbsup:
:thumbsup:
Human beings, who are almost unique in having the ability to learn from the experience of others, are also remarkable for their apparent disinclination to do so.  ~Douglas Adams

 

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