Poor fit by new Solar Panel

Interesting observation! The gasket has a very low profile and I did report to David that I thought mine was a bit slack and needed another couple of mil. Nonetheless, it works brilliantly and has not, as far as I can ascertain, dislodged yet.

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Had the same problem. I have two sky’s and on one unit was a very loose fit at the sky/solar connection and would not work. Put it on my other Sky and although not a tight fit was better and has been working just fine.
That said, WF staff has been great. Sent out a new solar unit and will get it today. Hopefully it will be a better fit for the Sky I really want it on. Last resort is to swap the Skys so I have the solar unit on the station that needs it more.

Mine was very loose as well, but not the solar panel to the Sky, mine was the post mount to the solar panel. I found it was a bit tighter if I rotated the post mount 180 degrees, but it was still a much slacker fit than the post mount directly to the sky. I’ll probably wrap some white electrical tape around it when I get the time.

My one was loose too, so I just put some layers of electrical tape over the gasket and trim then back.
That did the trick and it is nice and tight now.

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Mine was loose at the pole mount as well when I installed it a few weeks ago. I was up on my roof today for another reason and checked on it. When i twisted it off the pole mount, lots of water poured out. This is going to be a big problem come winter when ice forms inside of this.

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I have the Sky mounted on a pole and never had a water issue. Where exactly was the water?

It was in the space beneath the solar panel.

Check the battery compartment of the Sky. It’s very possible the Sky is the issue.

I had a lot of water in my unit also. I will go back to batteries in the fall as ice will be a real problem in winter.

I had a bunch of water in mine the other day and was getting some weird voltage drops on chart
Wf support told me that that was normal and would not hurt anything but I can see your point about freezing I found water in the upper section also but it could of came from my having to tip the pole to access the unit as it is on the end of a 14’ pipe.

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tnicholas
WeatherFlow Staff

13d

Hi, thanks for checking and please keep us posted on any issues. Water between the pole mount and solar panel is expected and not an issue; there are no electrical contacts between the two attachments

Mine has the same problem as Dave - extremely loose fit between SKY pole mount and retrofit solar panel. Just the slightest twist causes the entire Sky with solar panel to fall off pole mount. Anybody devise a way to more positively lock these two modules together, like the fairly solid lock between the Sky and the pole mount? Electrical tape adhesive will just melt and slide off. The defect in this scheme seems to be with the receiving side of the retrofit solar panel module.

Hi @robert.jochim,
I use silicone tape around it. (edit1.: It may also be called self amalgamating tape) Different colours depending which roll I grab. The type of tape that doesnt stick to itself unless you stretch it and turns into rubber like bond but doesnt use glue to stick to the Sky. Yet it should also be fairly water tight but I have had water in mine after using the tape so not sure if the water came up from below the mount. It comes off very easily with a slight cut. Here is a picture with bird poop on it…
IMG_1831
cheers Ian :slight_smile:

If there’s a problem with the solar panel attaching securely please contact support@weatherflow.com or open a ticket

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Interesting. My Sky got knocked over for a day or so and Sunday when I fixed it there was water between the base and solar panel (NOT between the panel and Sky). Enough water that it poured out, not just a little condensation. I thought it was just my sprinklers or rain that got in while it was semi-sideways, but now I will be paying closer attention. If water gets in during normal use, freezing could cause grief.

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Hi those who have been around since the early version of the pole mount,

I would like to know which of the two pole mounts in this picture is the current version?
IMG_2480

cheers Ian :slight_smile:

The one with the left looks like the newer one. I think the different gasket had a couple of purposes but mainly to deal with vibration dampening. I tested a couple of different ones, each with a different stiffness. I did have a gasket twist on the original mount like on the right in your picture which allowed water into the base and rust one of the case screws.

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Hi @gizmoev,

Thank you. I was thinking it might be the newer design but I’m still not certain. It would be nice if Weatherflow printed version numbers on all their items. Weatherflow are sending me some new replacements to be sure. I am considering how to improve the water tightness as it did let water into the bottom side of the SPA and then also without the SPA while using batteries. It appears to me that the water flowed from one side through and out the other side. (there are no water marks above in the battery compartment or below inside the mount) I need to be sure it will last before I install it in a difficult to access public location. When the wind and rain is over 40 knots it probably leans over a little and the rain is forced in. See the photo below with just a little pressure applied. I had silicone tape around the seam but with the flat surfaces it must let water under the tape which then flows along the join to the weakness in the sealing rubber. I might try gasket silicone and/or perhaps some eternabond tape: https://www.eternabond.com/articles.asp?id=166
This was the mount after a few months on top of a hill near the coast.


And the Sky:

And with a little pressure pushing it over:

cheers Ian :slight_smile:

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It does look like water went both over and possibly under the gasket. You can see where there isn’t a completely clean gasket edge all the way around, especially the side by the arrow. You can see in this picture of the original mount that came with the Indiegogo campaign where the gasket rolled over.


In my case, because it is my mobile unit, it gets taken down every time I move. Furthermore, I’m not on the coast so don’t have much salt in the air. I’m wondering if in your case you would be better off with the old mount with a gasket thick enough to handle the tilting in the strong wind without compromising the seal.

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Hi @dsj

From now on to improve reliability I intend to use some contactor grease on the gold contacts. This article explains some of the issues: https://support.newgatesimms.com/gold-plated-contacts-can-also-need-a-connector-grease/

And choices of grease: https://support.newgatesimms.com/choosing-a-connector-lubricant/
cheers Ian :slight_smile:

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I use Dow Corning 4, no idea if WeatherFlow endorses such use of a dielectric grease (very light, clear). (FWIW, I’m an EE too, electronics, instrumentation, probably there are many electronics persons here)

I had similar problems with fit - New Station (fantastic), Minor Assembly Problems

Also, sadly my sky just stopped working - I think my Station may have just failed (doubt that is has anything to do with tiny amount of Dow Corning 4 that I used).

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