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Solar Charging?


New Member
Feb 5, 2008
Any of the more tech minded folks on the board here know anything about charging the batteries via solar panel?

I've been commuting the 8 miles to work and back daily on my 36V GoHub for about 6 months now, and would love to take it off of the grid completely.



More power to ya' I know that JohnyGA has a solar charger on his John Deere bike

A search on solar yields 32 hits. Give us an intro (forum rules) and read read read. :D


I saw this while browsing the web about half a year ago. Looks expensive but then again im sure you're used to that with an Ebike in the first place.
If they can charge an electric scooter in this way you should have no problem with an ebike as I believe they have much smaller battery packs and run on less watts. Good luck.



Any of the more tech minded folks on the board here know anything about charging the batteries via solar panel?
From easy to hard:

1) Get a grid interactive solar power system. System generates power during the day, sends it to the grid. At night you use it. Think of this as a way to locate the panels somewhere convenient, then using the grid as a storage/transmission system to get the power to your bike.

2) Put in solar power at the places you will likely charge the bike. You can use three panels to produce 36 volts directly, and charge the bike that way, but there are several problems with this:
- When the bike's not there, the power is wasted.
- Designing such a charger is not easy, and there are few such chargers out there.

3) Put in solar power at the places you will likely charge the bike, but use a 12 volt panel to charge a lead-acid battery. Then run an inverter to run your charger. This is a lot easier to assemble and use, but there are a lot of inefficiencies in the process - and it's a big system with the battery and all.

4) Put three panels on the bike and charge the batteries directly, without a charger. Pluses are simplicity and portability. Minuses are risk of overcharge, having to lug three panels around and lack of production while riding.


Active Member
Jan 11, 2008
Was in Harbor Freight last week - they have a solar charger, to interface between panel & battery.


Jan 16, 2008
Likely won't save you any money in the short run but would however.. be a cool project !

I plan to run a small panel setup as mentioned above with a bank of SLA, the panels keep the SLA's charged and trickled... then an inverter to run my Lithium chargers.

or.. skip the inverter setup and charge from 12v with an RC ( Remote control Thunder Power charger )

Panels generate small amounts of power, and depending on your location, relative to the seasons.. ( winter out here would suck ) .

Panels ON the bike are too much hassle, weight, size, theft.. best to just plug in an charge with a fast charger in most situations.
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Apr 28, 2008
I would say that having a panel on the bike itself would be dangerous, even insane, but those same panels mounted on your roof, generating energy would be ideal...charge it at night from a battery bank or grid tie-in, and run it flat during the day! How many batteries do you need to go the full 20 miles without recharging?
If you really, really want to mount a panel(s) on something, make it narrower, more aerodynamic, and mount the panels over the driver. Add a few LED lights for safety and road worthiness. Something with 3 narrow tires would be ideal. Enclosed driver's area for wind resistance. Oh wait, that's a car now...Well, back to the grid tie in!