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Category Archives: power

power to the camp

Winter Wood

..not that I want to curse things and get craploads of snow or anything..but it has been a fairly warm ( for the area ) and snow free winter so far. There, I said it. Let it be shown that in no way, shape or form am I complaining about the lack of both cold temperatures and ice based demondry ( aka snow). As a result the woodpile seems to be stacking up well against the elements..yes the pun was intended. We are roughly 1/2 way through the wood burning season and are nowhere near the 1/2 way point in wood usage..which might be a problem come end of wood burning season as we have plans for the area where the wood is actually stacked now ( not the picture, the rest of the wood bank on the side of the house)..but then again, I will take the warm(er) temperatures any day of the week..we can always move the unused pile to the new wood area further from the house.

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..and for the record there HAS been storms but followed by warmer weather and rain.

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Posted by on January 23, 2017 in heat, snow

 

Banking Wood in Perfect Weather

..no bugs, rain or heat..a good time to cut split and stack the wood up near the house. The final 2 cords are done, now it is only a matter of burning it!

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Posted by on September 5, 2016 in heat, todo

 

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Power in the Bank

1/2 of the battery bank (4 of 8) were officially toast so we bit the bullet and upgraded part 1 of our power system and got some replacement batteries…AC225’s…these 6 are actually almost 2 times the capacity of our ancient trojan batteries. To make sure we keep them fully topped up we will also be installing our additional solar panels and upgrading the panel to charge controller wiring with some proper low gauge braided wiring too..over the next couple of weeks.

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..been raining like a banshee around here as of late, the old beaverdam @ the stillwater cannot even be seen..higher than spring water levels…scary high.

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We will keep the old batteries charged up and beside the new bank until next spring when they will move into boler for portable power…or emergencies in case anything goes awry..as they tend to do.

 
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Posted by on September 26, 2012 in Construction, power, Purchases

 

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Our Place Just Became more Dutch

Our old double wind turbine had some wind issues last year. As a result of high winds ( or being cheap ) one of the 2 little windmills was lost. Cleaning up the shed I uncovered it and remounted it..and actually was playing around with it.

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…yes, I need alligator clips.

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Depending upon the speed the power responds as it should..by wildly varying. In the past I simply put it up to get it out of the way but I may hook it up to a charge controller and the ‘security system’ for power..we do get wind here but being 10 feet off the ground is not helping catch much wind..not to metion it is a very small wind turbine

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Posted by on May 22, 2012 in Construction, power

 

End of Year for Chopping Wood!

We are really hoping that this is it for the wood until the fall..it is such a magical time of year between the time when woodburning ends and before blackfly season begins (usually lasts about 3 days hehe). I held off on getting a wooden handled maul and settled on a free replacement..you can’t argue with the free(kin) price thats for sure! groan.

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…by all accounts I think we have enough wood to last us until after next woodburning season ( so read next April)..and that is not even counting the cord-cord.5 (hehe) that we cut last week. We might have enough but we are going to clear out the wood and chunk the remaining stuff we cut down so that we don’t have to deal with it during black fly season which is scheduled to start any day now..I can tell because last night the spring peepers started chirping….and Loki started barking at them. Whenever she barks in the middle of the night I get up and flash a flashlight on the coop to see if something has finally decided to sneak attack the chickens..last night she started barking 3 times and I realized Loki has never really heard ( being a former city dog) spring peepers before so the noise was foreign to her. Hopefully tonight will go a little better.

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Posted by on April 15, 2012 in Animals, Fowl, heat, power, Wildlife

 

They Don’t Make Them…

..like they used to. Dang, this is the 2nd maul I have broken in 3 years..I am only splitting around 4 cord a year too for the love of frink!
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the fiberglass snaps at the head..good thing that it did not happen mid swing…could have done some real damage.

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A* celebrates the end of the splitting for the day..we have enough for 2-3 days but I need to get something ( else ) more reliable. The maul has a 5 year warranty so it won’t cost anything to replace..but I want one with a wood handle and I think I have a maul head in the shed.

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Posted by on April 13, 2012 in heat, power, todo

 

Comparisons are never fair..

Spent the night at my sisters place last night..5 months ago she got a woodstove installed..wow it is a beauty. It can take some massive logs too which is really nice. We love the cookstove but not having to feed the stove constantly is nice..plus we need to resplit most log pieces to get them into our little cookstove..and this stove PUMPS out the heat as well..shocking really. I have woodstove envy now. image

 
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Posted by on March 3, 2012 in heat

 

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Snow and The Solar Panels

..sort of like Groundhog Day ( the movie that is) . Snow was followed by rain and we had an inch layer of ice on top of the panels blocking the ever important power prodution. I am not helping anything by not having the panels tilted for optimal winter sun collection so with this angle/panel setup the snow accumulates too much…but we have not really had much snow so I have not been putting my whole ass into making sure the panels are continually clean of snow…plus we are tentativly planning on installing our whole system in the summer..image

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A broom, 1 water jug filled with well water and some soft scraping with my gloved hand..and 15 minutes later (with multiple soakings) the panels are clear, I have an empty water jug and soaked gloves..which promptly froze as I was wearing them in the -16c weather..literally 5 minutes after finishing I could no longer pick anything up due to stiff gloves…so back inside to do some chores.

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..look outside 2 hours later and thanks to snow falling I get to do it all over again..deja vu all over again.

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Posted by on February 16, 2012 in power, solar

 

Solar Sound System

Long ago in a house faraway we owned a massive component stereo..it was a Sony and consisted of a DVD player, tape player, cd player, VCR, reciever and massive speakers. I loved the stereo but it was a power hog..we knew if we wanted to go offgrid there would be no way to power it so around 4 years ago I bought this little 12v reciever. It had great reviews with professional sound quality but it was a power sipper…So, I got rid of all my space taking gear..and took my rear speakers and this reciever as my ‘pumping stereo’. For the last 3 years we have had it hooked up in a myriad of places but the bookshelf is where is is going to life forever..so instead of just hooking it up to a car battery ( which we kept on the window sill ) we wanted a long-term sound solution that did not cramp our window. The idea is to use a 12v (5w) panel to charge a battery which runs the stereo ( on the other side of the house ).

SO, without too much thought or preparation I started. A* was out for the day so it was a perfect time to start hacking the place up..and I started with a saw to the ceiling( yellow handle, the reciever is the silver thing(power and volume..complicated!!)):
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..not pretty but I wired the panel to go in through the vent. The battery is in the attic for the winter but when spring hits I am going ot have to change locations for everything cause it will be too hot and it will kill the battery life. Perched at the top of the ladder I had a tough time getting the panel attached to the side of the house..precarious( I nearly fell over backwards as I was screwing the panel in)..don’t worry though cause if I fell I had Jango and Loki below me to cushion my fall.
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I needed some strand wiring for the battery to the charge controller so I made some with some excess wiring from the shed.
Finish making the cables…
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Bring everything to the attic..attach the panel..I attached a 12v light to make sure I had a current to signal that everything was attached correctlyimage
..and it works(as well as the ‘charging’ indicator). Now to connect the stereo. I feed some 16g wiring into the ceiling hole..
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So, moving on I head back downstairs and connect the wire to the stereo. Turn on the stereo and turn on my iPod..this way once I connect it upstains (again) the music will start blaring.
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..reseal the hole for the cable…
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..I marked the + of the wiring with red tape, connect the wires to power the stereo..and ‘RIde of the Valkryes’ starts pumping out..SWEET!
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…and the working rig after cleanup. Now we can pump tunes whenever we want without fear or running out..a long term solution ( until the spring when it changes )..we also had some car speakers donated to us too..sometime in the near future I am going to set these up under the eaves of the house so we can have both inside and outside speakers which we will be able to turn on/off inside the house..we need louder music outside..especially for gatherings(coming 2014)!

 
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Posted by on January 21, 2012 in Construction, solar

 

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Yay, dry wood!

It is nice to have dry wood this year..we are onto week 2 of hardwood and we have noticed an increase in temperature between hardwood and softwood that we burned earlier in the season. With some of this hardwood is mixed some softwood from year 1 cutting on the property….and it seems too light and partially rotten..not optimal for burning so it makes me wonder about the lifespan of the already cut and remaining softwood we have chunked up..but work is done for today so no sense in overthinking it..

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Posted by on December 27, 2011 in heat

 

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