I have been thinking about something similar for a shed I want to build. Harbor Freight has some fairly cheap solar panels of not particularly high wattage, that would be cheap enough to do a test set up. Buy one, hook it to a battery/inverter (I think they might come with a 12V battery charger circuit but not sure) and see how much charge you can get out of the thing to keep a battery charged with some use. You might also want to look at the heat mats, a lot of those things are not direct 110V but use a transformer power supply to get, maybe, 12V or something similar, so you could possibly run them directly off a battery. Or go to the junkyard and get some heating elements out of some car seats? You can probably buy the heating wire too, I put it in my bathroom tile floor, it runs off 110V through some sort of box that might step it down, I don't know. There is probably 12V heating element stuff out there somewhere, eBay is your friend.

HF also have some LED lights with a little solar panel to charge batteries for like $40, not sure the light output but again, cheap enough to test out. Costco have been selling some LED shop lights, 110V, that you could probably run off an inverter, not sure what they draw but you could check. Or buy some 12V LED lights from China (I bought a load of 110V UG10 spots that are incredible and have been working fine for 6 months now, 12V is a standard too for those fancy track lights) and hook them up. If you are interested I can send some links to the sockets and lights. They don't use much amps for a lot of light.

You could probably get a reasonable set up for a coupla $100. Or just run some conduit and a circuit out to the shed from the house...

--R

On 9/3/15 1:11 PM, Andrew Strasfogel via Mercedes wrote:
I would like to electrify my shed in the back 40 in order to provide 1)
simple overhead lighting and 2) a 110V outlet for grow mats under my
seedlings next spring.

I might also want to recharge batteries for a B&D trimmer, although this is
a lesser priority.

There is a sunny spot where I could erect a solar panel, about 15' from the
edge of the building.

Anybody out there work with practical solar applications?

Andrew
Gentleman farmer and rabbit torturer
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