This Website is Completely Solar Powered! - Springfield, OH - Read it and Weep
The first hot showers in the off-grid lab were firewood stove-heated.
Water added to a large pot with a bilge pump dropped in.
Although appreciated (and of course necessary), this was a time-consuming makeshift shower.
The bilge pump was connected to one end of a garden hose that delivered the shower to the other end of a garden sprayer and was messy.
Later, I evolved to black pipe placed out in the sun.
However, solar-heated water was an ineffective and unreliable means for obvious reasons, such as waiting till 11am when the water in the pipe was hot enough to be able to take a shower.
The black pipe seen in the photos is actually over 200 feet of thick-walled hard poly pipe, typically used for underground water lines. The pipe draped all over the roof, and then down the side of the garage, and back and forth on a wire fence.
In the summer, the heated water was at times unbearably scalding, with no means to adjust the temperatures.
When the hot water ran out, the shower was over.
Aside from the first winter out here, the subsequent winters have been a breeze due to a fire-wood stove adaption.
The Stove has its own page allocated toward explaining what worked, and what did not work.
Since the stove stays fired 3/4 of the year anyway, cooking is anytime-ready.
The following photos are the second attempt to make a decent pizza.
(Later on the phone)
Adjusting to the Northern Solar Sun
With the additional solar panels and deep-cycle batteries that have been added here to requisite Ohio-climes, available power has finally become almost entirely stabilized.
As already mentioned elsewhere within this site, the amount of solar panels and batteries I brought to Ohio from Florida was totally sufficient at my prior location of Florida.
I hadn't even taken into consideration that there is snow here (and less sun and wind in general).
Finally, almost three years of saving and striving, all appears to be at the point where a YEAR-round stabilization of available power has been attained.
To be honest, there's still two hurdles to overcome, the largest of which is the 220v pump that is placed in our well.
Plans are to allocate a solar panel array and battery bank JUST for the pump alone (as opposed to sharing off of any of the other battery banks here).
The photo shows one of the battery bank / solar arrays' statistics.
My initial premise to plan is to link 20 (qty) 6v batteries in series (x 2 in parallel) to total 120v x 2qty. This is actually just a dream because I don't have the 5-thousand dollars to allocate toward the 40 batteries, nor the cost of the additional controller(s) and solar panels and the plan suddenly doesn't look so attainable by today's economic clime.
The aforementioned is however the ultimate aim as it would be an awesome test overall as to what can and cannot be attained using this method.
The other option is to simply pull the 220v pump out of the well and drop down a 24v or 48v model.
However I already chased this rabbit with the local well contractors in my area and ended up less optimistic.
After several calls, and even less amount of replies from the contractors, I'm beginning to realize that this might be a task better suited for me to do personally.
It seemed the contractors were clueless or not so interested in the project. Their prices varied with statements such as, "well that's if something doesn't go wrong", and "the price is variable upon...".
Then I was hit with their prices (to simply pull up a pump, and drop another in the hole).
So now I'm at the, "there's just gotta be a better way!" state of mind.
This is a photo of Large Marge, one of the spiders that live in here.
Don't underestimate her speed handicap due to her size. On a couple of occasions I needed to move the spider and found her to be very agreeable, choosing flight rather than fight-mode.
Before this pseudo-test operation began out here in the garage, there were some fears that needed to be addressed.
Spiders were but one of them.
However, the book I generally lean upon for some guidance, the Bible, states that "Fear is not of God". The implication being, that if we harbor fear, it might not be a great attribute to take onto judgment.
Large Marge, the spider, generally is only seen at night. I usually take a shower at night, so it's not uncommon that she obligingly will make way for me in the area that Marge resides. What seems to work for me in an effort to addressing fears is to simply consider oneself as already dead.
Another helper in overcoming fears is to make it God's problem, and basically convince oneself that if God is such a great and powerful God, that the proof might be in the pudding and to continue with whatever endeavor might arise.
Seen below, Marge is half-lounging. She is in a position that appears to indicate that she's comfortable, and not in the alert-mode.
This particular spider, when in full lounge-mode, lays very flattened, with legs spread out.
Upon doing a cursory glance at videos found on the Internet, It was found that most nations eat spiders of some sort or another.
In seeking whether or not there were any good recipes out there, few are found in the video section. Basically spiders are easy to prepare by simply pan-frying for a few minutes and then displaying over maybe a rice pilaf.
Large spiders, larger than Marge, are said to be the best spiders to eat due to possessing more substance.
Even venomous spiders are edible. In fact, to the best of my recollection, there are very few spiders that are toxic to ingest. Ironically, it is said that the tastiest spiders are also the most deadliest (when alive).
Some spiders must be cleaned first, just as you would with a deer or chicken, removing entrails and then cooking.
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