Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Inexpensive Micro Home Power System Inverters by Walt Barrett

We are just a few days away from installing the roofing and siding for the micro home. Between heavy rain, and a heavy shipping schedule John and me have had very little time to work on the micro home for days.
One great piece of information though is that we have picked up a line of inverters that can supply 3000 watts of 120 volts AC from a 12 volt battery.
We will be using one on our micro home. The price is very good at only $275.00 for 3000 watts, $195.00 for 2000 watts and $140.00 for 1500 watts. Shipping is extra. These work great with solar battery packs, and they have all kinds of built in protection. They are 85% efficient which is not bad considering they have built in cooling fans. I can send full specs to anyone who request them at wbarrett@aol.com .
There is a video of the micro home on my Pickens Plan web site.
If anyone wants to join write to me for a free invitation. It's a great place to learn about free energy.
More coming soon.

Friday, August 29, 2008

A New Blog On the Pickens plan by Walt Barrett

I have started a new Blog on the Pickens plan web site in order to add to the great content needed to draw attention to this site. This is a site where you can learn a great deal about saving energy and building your own energy saving products. It is also where we can build up a great deal of clout to force our Congress to do something about the energy mess we are in.
So please come and join me on this great new site. Please contact me at this link and I will send you a personal invitation to join and become a friend of Mr. Pickens.
Mr. Pickens has gone to a great deal of effort to establish this site for us. Let's not let him down!
This blog will continue here as usual.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

More wiring of the micro home by Walt Barrett

Now that all of the electrical boxes are in and hardwired We have started to install all of the plug sockets etc. This won't take long because in a tiny off the grid micro home there are only about a dozen boxes to do, but they have to be done right and follow the local electrical codes. We are very busy of course and the project is lagging, but we have already gained a wealth of information The solar power system will be up and working well before the interior is finished. This will give us plenty of light to work by.

Photos coming shortly.

I have now decided on a composting toilet that will directly feed a composting bin with earthworms under the building. It will be similar to the on in the Bronx Zoo in New York City. We will build it our selves, and will detail the construction with photos etc. We expect it to be odor free with our stack design, we'll see. And now its off to work on the micro home.


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Wiring The Micro Home part 2 August 26, 2008

Well I have been busy today. I wired I all the electrical boxes in four hours today between customer calls and all the other stuff that goes on around here.
Here is the link to the photo album on www.Picasa.com
I have to run, more tomorrow.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Micro home structure and sheathing by Walt Barrett

The photographs are posted on our Picasa web album. This is the link.

They are all in chronological order. It was a tough day putting up the roof for this old man.
I have joined the Pickens Plan to help solve the energy and environmental crisis we are suffering. I would like to invite you all to join too. Here is the link to my page.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Some Micro Home Wiring Photo Details by Walt Barrett

I have attached some photos of the wiring details. Progress is slow this week due to a heavy sales and shipping schedule. We have pre drilled every stud before assembly, all in the exact same spot 24 inches up from the bottom and on center. There is a photo of a corner detail with a snake wire in to to pull the heavier wire through easily. This method is the neatest and strongest way to go structurally. It does not weaken the corner. We have also shown the placement of the electrical boxes for the female 120 volt plugs. We hope to have more progress to show you soon.
We will soon have LED Light Bulbs that only draw 3 watts at 120 volts and they are supposed to be a very bright but warm white for reading etc. We'll see, because we will be testing them and publishing non flash photo of the actual results. We have found a very reasonable source. They are also available in 12 volts DC. We have elected to invert the 12 volts Solar DC to 120 AC in our unit but will offer both options.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Wiring the Micro home II by Walt Barrett

The electrical system for the Micro Home will consist of the following components.
1. Solar power modules and mounting racks.
2. A solar charging regulator.
3. A battery bank of solar type deep draw batteries in a sealed and vented to the exterior storage bin. Batteries perform better at normal room temperature.
4. A 12 volt DC to 120 volt A/C inverter.
5. A 120 volt circuit breaker panel.
6. Standard house wiring consisting of electrical boxes for plug sockets, light switches and light fixtures. Number 12 and 14 wire will be used as required.
If the batteries are to be stored inside the building then the sealing and exterior venting of the battery storage box is very important because the hydrogen and other gasses emitted from the batteries during the charging process can be toxic and explosive.
During the process of pre cutting all of the framing material we ran all of the studs through a drill press and pre drilled all of the 1/2" holes for the wiring. It's a lot easier than on site drilling. Each hole is exactly 24 inches off the floor and is on center exactly. This is particularly handy when you have to snake the wire around a corner inside the walls. I have personally seen electricians "butcher " the inside corner of a wall in order to get wire around the corner. They really weaken the structure for one thing and it is also just plain sloppy work in my opinion.
Another important point is that the electrical codes should be followed implicitly at all times. You have to figure the total load on each electrical circuit and size the wire and breakers accordingly. When designing a solar power system you need to start by figuring the wattage on every electrical appliance and light. You have to then choose the proper inverter, wire and electrical supply panel and circuit breakers. The total wattage consumption and solar insolation (Watts or BTU per sq ft per hour for your climate also determines the number of storage batteries and number of solar modules and the amperage rating off the solar charging regulator.
Obviously, if you tone down the number of appliances and use low wattage lighting you can have an almost bargain basement price on the solar electric system. We are investigating all of the low wattage refrigerators. These units will determine how low we can go on the cost of the system. We have found one 5.8 cu ft unit so far that runs on one 85 watt solar module and two deep draw batteries. They also offer the unit as a freezer.
I hope to post some photos of the wiring soon. We are experiencing heavy sales of tractors and generators right now, and it is really eating into our time schedule. That's what pays the bills and finances our micro home research project. Our goal is to develop the lowest priced and most efficient micro home design.
Any questions,
We welcome your suggestions and ideas.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Wiring the Micro Home by Walt Barrett

Yesterday we went to Lowe's because it was a no sales tax special weekend deal that the state Massachusetts sponsors one weekend a year to stimulate business. We live just over the boarder in Rhode Island so the RI businesses lost a ton of sales this past weekend. The state of RI never met a dollar, a tax, or a fee that they didn't fall in love with. Twenty percent of the population is on some kind of public assistance and, the illegals are literally killing us in more ways that one! We may be the first state in the union to go bankrupt. We are considering moving our company to another state, probably to a warmer climate too.
We bought everything we need to wire the Micro Home, plus the rest of the OSB for the roof, the roof shingles, drip edge, the underlayment, the nails, and more 2" x 4" lumber. Between the sales tax savings and some Lowe's coupons we saved fifty dollars. We will be posting photos of the wiring process and the roofing process very soon now. It looks like we are getting a break in the weather.
The electrical system will be totally solar. We will make DC and store it in batteries and then invert it to A/C as we need it. We also plan to charge spare batteries while driving our cars and pickup truck. We have a special wiring harness for that project. This plan will save a fortune is solar panels.
I have forty years experience in the solar business so the electric, the heat, and the hot water are a relatively simple task. When I say off the grid, I mean off the grid! We need more people to get with the program. You have to think about your future. The less energy you use, the more money you save. It's the same with your motor vehicles. Imagine how much money you would save if you figured out how to do without a car, and just rented one for vacations etc.,or when you really needed one? Of course, everyone can't do that, but suppose they could. You could easily save enough money to retire on. Owning a Micro Home is a similar proposition. You build it or buy it for a fraction of a huge typical American home and have either no mortgage , or a very small one. Now there's a deal! It's the same thing for a Micro Apartment. Just take a look at the Micro Apartments In Japan, and to add to that they ride bikes besides. No wonder they lead the world in savings accounts!
Well I have to go out and work on the project now. I'll post more photos soon.
Please tell your friends and stay tuned!