Turquoise Energy News #148
2020 (Posted October 10th 2020 AD / 25 AI - After Internet)
Lawnhill BC Canada - by Craig Carmichael
(Project Summaries etc.)
- Wall construction
- "Mini T-Plug" Connectors for 12 volts - Li-Po Cells - A 3D
Printed 12V LED "COB" Light - Ground Effect Craft model: Motor/Battery
Tests & Where is the time going? - Nissan Leaf replacement batteries
(Miscellaneous topics, editorial comments & opinionated rants)
- Eliminating Skin Moles: It Works! -
Explanation For Those Nasty California Fires - Gardening and Chickens -
Small Thots (Calendar idiosyncrasies, Needless CoViD woes, Palestine) -
Transport - Electric Hubcap Motor Systems
* Ground Effect Vehicle (1/4 scale model)
Electric Equipment Projects - No Reports
* My Solar Power System: -
Solar Production log et cetera - Notes.
* Turquoise Battery Project
(NiMnOx-Zn in Mixed Alkali-Salt electrolyte) - No
Early in the month I finished the half of the south wall
that I had started. Then I stapled on some "Tyvek". This oddly made
HDPE sheet or fabric is supposed to not allow liquid water through, but
to allow water vapor to pass. That way, the house shouldn't get wet
from the outside, but if a wall does get damp, it can dry out. It
sounds like aluminum foil, "crinkley" quite loud, when flexed.
I had given no thought to such a "hyped" modern building
material, but my neighbor took some rotten cedar boards off at the
bottom of the windward/seaward face of his cottage, exposing the tyvek.
Then he took the tyvek off expecting to also have to replace the boards
behind it, but was amazed to find that they were still in good shape.
So I decided it must be worth putting on.
I did get it up on the gable end section. Seems I didn't
take a picture. Both windows are in, but I don't yet have a door.
Somehow I haven't had time even to continue with the other half of that
the month I made a shell to enclose the cord wires for appliances, and
socket-pin holder in order to replace the
cheap plastic ones with higher temperature nylon. Then, losing 1.6(?)mm
the wall plate and .8mm in the shell (2.4mm?), the plug and socket
didn't fit together very solidly. I redid the wall plates so the
sockets were only recessed by .8mm.
Later it occurred to me that if I was making [nylon]
socket shells anyway, I could make their shape a bit different, putting
a lip around the back edge so
they would fit into wall plates flush with
the front, without danger of them pulling out through the front when a
cord was unplugged. Then only the plugs (no lip) would need the .8mm
face in front of the
wire enclosure shells.
On the 18th I checked for a picture of loose T-Plugs on
AliExpress (for the August newsletter, still not quite finished) and
found "mini T-Plugs". They had a nylon shell, that already had
a lip! Perfect! But I found a dimensional drawing. "Mini" was a very
small size! I couldn't find the regular size with nylon shells or lips.
Next Change of Plans...
Hmm... Well, in order to further simplify, perhaps "mini
T-Plugs" could be the 12 volt size, and "regular T-Plugs" could be for
36 volts? Since the "mini" came in nylon (and had a lip!), I wouldn't
have to 3D print bodies, or cover the ends to put them into outer
housings like wall
plates and cord covering enclosures - they could be inserted flush.
They were rated at 10 amps, which
seems (if only just) large enough for lighter loads like 12
volt lights and things. In fact they were smaller than USB plugs and
sockets, often used as 5 volt connectors. I think for a 12 volt
standard plug, people would like that. If some heavier connectors for
applications (heavier appliances and inverters) were also available,
they could be just what was
wanted for most 12 volt wiring, and I ordered 60 pairs. (for about 25$C)
I also found the original WSDeans.com designer
company. But they
were rather costly compared to any store on AliExpress, and being
(presumably) in USA, they would probably insist on courier shipping
would entail higher customs charges. And they didn't have any with
nylon shells either. It seemed unfortunate that it looked impractical
with those who had designed the connectors in the first place.
I had already designed nylon shells for these "regular"
T-Sockets, and could easily add a lip to them. So if the "mini" ones
could be for 12 volts, and the "regular" ones for 36, that should
pretty much solve both connector systems. All that would still be
needed would be "maxi" size "T-Plugs" and "T-Sockets" for higher
amperage appliances - in two different sizes, for 12 volts and 36.
[19th] Still it was aggravating that there seemed to be no regular
T-Plugs in a high temperature material. In the morning I looked again
"plastic" - "plastic" - "rubber" (huh?) - "plastic" - "plastic" - but
finally at "Fanjay": "nylon". (I'll assume it's true. You never seem to
be entirely sure with some of these Chinese companies.) Yay! So I
ordered a bunch of their sockets (30 or 40) and 10 of their plugs. (all
under 20$C) They turned out to have several ridges intended to give a
better hand grip, but one especially wide one could be considered to be
a lip to hold them in an outer shell, fitting flush at the front. (I
have to keep swapping filaments if I didn't have to print anything in
nylon. ...Maybe I should get a second 3D printer anyway? or
even one for each type of filament I want to print? 3 or 4? That would
make it all easier, but I would have to justify the cost of the
printers, which would at least mean I'd have to be selling things. But
of course that is exactly the intent of making 12V and 36V off-grid
All this T-Plug connector shopping not only wasn't breaking the bank,
but it seemed like it would save an awful lot of time over making my
The New Lithium-Ion 3.7V, 120 AH Batteries
I had ordered 35 of these cells and got them in August.
I'm not sure why I picked that number - at first I was just going to
get 20. My friend Jim Harrington in
Victoria who had told me about them had bought 10 for 36 volts. In mid
September he decided he wanted to go up to 48 volts, but
BatteryHookup.com didn't have them any more. So I sent him three in a
swap/buy arrangement wherein I got a 24 volt balance charger and some
money. So I had 32.
(He also sent me the balance charger for the 11
Lithium-iron phosphate cells that he had given me some years ago, that
I had thought I didn't want at that time. Now I could put these same 11
cells together in their original 36 volt configuration as 36 of the 72
volts for the Miles truck. Thanks Jim for saving it all this time!)
3.7 volt Lithium-ion cells need just 10 cells for 120
amp-hours, 36 volts
(actually 37V). Ten of them in a cardboard box weighed just 44 pounds.
How best to utilize them?
Using seven for 24 volts for electrifying the lawn tractor
would leave 25. That would be awkward unless it was to be three sets of
seven and one set of ten for 36 volts.
Twenty would give the Miles mini cargo truck 74 volts at
120 amp-hours. That would leave twelve. Ten was really too few for the
Sprint car - it would only provide 120 amp-hours, which isn't much at
just 36 volts.
Using all thirty of them (with two spare cells) for the
Sprint car (should I ever get it going) would provide 360 amp-hours at
37 volts: 13,320 watt-hours, for just 150 pounds weight. But the
Sprint, running or not, can be plugged into the
adjacent solar battery backup power system for the house, to
provide that energy and recharge from solar if the grid goes down.
like the most practical use. (With the old ones it was 36 lithium-iron
phosphate 3.2 volt cells giving ~38 volts and 300
amp-hours: 11,400 watt-hours for 270 pounds weight.) I would just have
to run the other 36 volts of the truck off 11 or 12 the leftover
'misbhaving' Li-Po batteries, giving it just 72V, 100AH or 7200
watt-hours. Enough to get to town, I should think, but needing a
recharge to return home. I think I've spent all I want to on batteries
for a while!
To get 12 volts for the car's lights and all, instead of
another battery I would simply use a DC to DC down converter that turns
on with the key. That will
also provide an even drain on the whole 36 volts, instead of the
previous simple setup which ran the lights off the lowest 12 volts of
On the 16th the three 10 cell balance chargers arrived. I
still need some aluminum bars to tie the "sliced off" power tabs
together on these new but surplus cells removed from EV cars. (On
A 12V LED "COB" Light
[Sept 4th] I had some months ago bought some 12 volt "COB" ("Chip On
Board") flat LED modules. It had occurred to me to make some 12V lights
with CAT - now T-Plug - plugs on the end of the cord as plug-in lights.
When I took the clamps off the older batteries (TE News #147), it
occurred to me that the
aluminum ends looked just about right to be heatsinks for these COB
light 'sheets'. Even the screw holes were in just the right place.
It now - perhaps long belatedly - occurred to me that an
easy way to make LED light housings would be to 3D print them. In fact,
that proved almost dead
simple, especially compared to cutting and gluing pieces of flat
plastic as I had done before. I just had to put a diffuser piece on
the front. Why hadn't I thought of it before, long ago?
The housing, printed out that day, looked perfect but it
had a serious flaw: in spite of the open back, once the diffuser was
glued on there would be no way to get the LED and heatsink assembly in.
(Sept. 5th] I cut one end open with a hacksaw and a thin blade
("coping"?) saw. I decided that these housings would have to be made in
with an end that screws or snaps on. Given that, I finally have
an LED light design that isn't a pile of work to put together. (I
suppose it's still simpler to order existing lights from China. The COB
plates come from there anyway.)
I was about to cut the diffuser plastic, then I remembered
that methylene chloride doesn't solve PLA. Hmm. What about MEK? It
would glue somehow... but for a final design maybe a slide-in diffuser?
I printed an unsuccessful and then a mediocre but workable housing with
diffuser slot, in which I also added space for a three-position switch
(bright-off-dim) and a couple of current limiting resistors.
That was much better, with good access front and rear to the screws to
LED/Heatsink assembly to the housing. One screw can hold the diffuser
from sliding out after assembly.
First try at a 3D printed housing
LED COB panel shown facing the rear.
The LED/heatsink assembly won't fit in from the rear.
Third try enclosure with high-off-low switch,
current limiting resistors, slide-on diffuser.
Turned on "low".
The two previous attempts are on the right.
The Time, the Time!
Next I was going to do a housing for the down converters,
the DC to DC version of universal power adapters. And maybe print some
actual nylon T-plug sockets (before I found some nylon T-plugs on
line), and then wall plates and wire shells to match
them. These little things didn't seem like a tall order.
But somehow after designing and printing just these three
items, I didn't seem to have any more time for even the smallest
renewable energy project. (How could I not have pulled that shaft out
of the truck and balanced it yet?)
One day I simply took three hours when I should have been
doing something else and put the batteries into the model ground effect
craft. This time the motors had plenty of power to slide the model
across the floor and it was evident it had lots of power to take off.
But it still needs a control to steer using the two motors, and anyway
the 'throttle' needs to be reversed so if the model loses communication
with the transmitter/control, it stops instead of going to full
throttle and hitting a tree or vanishing into the distance. (I cannot
for the life of me imagine why they are made that way.) I've ordered
some CA3260 OpAmps for that, on discovering that I can't find the tube
of them I thought I had.
It seemed my nephew was never going to make it up here
all (I was hoping that if he visited as he had said, he would like it
and decide to stay, at least for a summer), and I had decided to rent
out my travel trailer. A
lady who says she wants to garden and is bringing chickens and ducks
wants to rent it, and on top of trying to put up walls on the
post-and-beam house frame (presently enclosing that trailer) and
everything else, I had to get some things ready for her.
Where are all the days, weeks and months going? I'm starting to
of ever finding time to complete any of the major projects like the
everlasting nickel-manganate-zinc batteries, the 100% efficient
variable torque converter, the unipolar, permanent magnet assisted
ultra efficient BLDC motor and controller, a rotary air
compressor-decompressor for open loop air heat pumping, 'free'
electricity from HE rays, and so on.
But perhaps there will yet come a time when at least some
of these things can be brought to completion - and hopefully
"New" Nissan Leaf Batteries
friend Tom, now back in Victoria, found a source for
supposedly "reconditioned" Leaf batteries for around 2000 $ each.
Nissan refuses to produce new batteries for older Leafs, eg, 2011.
They took a couple of months to deliver, and it turned out
to be something of a scam. They were just old Leaf batteries with
deteriorated range. However, it did provide Tom with three 'extra'
cases, into which new batteries could be placed, and he's working on
finding new cells that will fit, and in touch with a Chinese
manufacturer. If that works out, he'll be able to make up batteries to
give the cars back their full range. (or even more?)
And he's selling one of them to a Leaf owner whose battery
has become so poor he can hardly use the car - so it's still an upgrade!
It appears that electric cars are likely to last for
decades except for the batteries, and apparently there are hundreds of
thousands of older Leafs that will be needing new batteries, so he may
yet make a good business out of it.
I've put about 30,000 Km on my own 2015 Leaf (total
~65,000), with little sign of battery deterioration. Sometimes I think
it's averaging a couple of percent lower charge remaining than it used
to have when I drive to town and back - something like 53% instead of
(Maybe someday I'll get the "ultra efficient" Chevy Sprint
project working, sell the Leaf, and be able to put in whatever
batteries I please -- maybe even my 'everlasting' nickel manganate-zinc
(Miscellaneous topics, editorial comments & opinionated rants)
Moles - It Works!
Something I have continued
experimenting with for some time is elimination of moles on my back and
chest. Moles mostly seem to be caused by scratching. Being allergic to
various pollens, my back can get horribly itchy. I gradually learned to
put calamine lotion (or other anti-itch cream) on it, and never to go
outside without a shirt on even in the warmest weather. In the
meantime, having at one point in my late 20s had my doctor remove three
I'd had since childhood, I had been free of any major moles. But in my
40s and 50s I gained several new ones, including some on my chest.
And now the memory occurs that when I was about 4, my dad
(then about 31) had found a wooden back scratcher with a long handle
using it lavishly in the kitchen, saying "Ah, at last a back scratcher
that really works!" Then when he was 70(?), I saw him with no shirt on
and I was shocked: his whole upper and mid back was a mass of moles and
skin lesions! I'm sure they were a major contributor to his ill health
and death, although he lived to age 84. And that the scratching all
those years ago was the cause of the later appearing moles.
Perhaps a year ago I switched to using the same thing I
have used before for skin tags and an occasional wart: a mixed paste of
castor oil and baking soda. I simply keep it in an old jar lid on the
bathroom counter. It doesn't stay mixed very well, and one uses a
finger to pick/mix up an amount for a good paste at the time of
My doctor once surgically removed a mole (one of the three
originals), and some years
later the whole area flared up into major problems, sometimes becoming
a giant "spider" of red lines. (I recall that being 2004.) I had to
have cool showers because any warmth would trigger it. A treatment of
boiled mullein leaves ("mullein stupes") taped on would bring it under
control and (I suspect) prevented it from killing me. I finally killed
it with lavish applications of Compound W, finally burning
pretty deep into the skin to at last get rid of the root that kept
coming back time after time. (At least, there's been no sign of it
So, knowing that agitating moles can make them worse -
even much worse - my technique was somewhat different. Instead of
massaging the moles with the mixture, I only rubbed - almost dabbed -
it on very gently, just to soak the mole in the mixture.
I had one "crusty", rough mole growing on my chest, and
one that had been on my back for some time, a few dark ones with smooth
surfaces, and various small bumps from almost colorless to darker. For
quite a while, nothing seemed to be happening, and I only treated them
once every two or three days. Perhaps that wasn't often enough.
I had a dream in which there were some little dark
scorpions sitting on my chest. They were just sitting there doing
nothing, but being scorpions, they probably had potential to be
dangerous if disturbed. I simply pointed a finger at one and it fell
off. In the intricacy of details I was sure that the "scorpions" were
my moles, and "pointing my finger" at them had to be the dabbing of the
castor oil and baking soda mix onto them - but without agitating them.
So then I went at them a bit
more often, every day or sometimes two days, but even more gently than
before. I had become fairly skeptical about actually getting rid of any
as there had been no discernible signs of changes. They didn't even
seem to lighten up in color as well as when I was using "Atoma Triple
Antibiotic cream" or hydrocortisone cream. But I kept at it.
Suddenly one day, the one on my chest started crumbling
off in little pieces as I applied the paste, over a very few
days. Of course that made me more enthusiastic than all those many
months with no apparent results, and I started doing it daily for sure
(I usually did it before bed) or even an extra one on the two rough
moles in the morning. Soon it was gone, leaving a patch of dark but
smooth skin that was smaller in extent than the mole had been. (image,
right) That has been lightening up. I don't know if it will disappear
Next, near the end of September the crusty
one on my back started to disintegrate. Of course I started giving it
two soakings a day. At this point - which was really some ways into the
disintegration - it finally occurred to me to take photos.
(It was hard to hold the cell phone behind my back, aim it, and press
the right spot on the screen to get these pictures, and the focus
especially on the second one is poor in spite of several attempts. The
orientation or camera position may be different too.)
By October 3rd there was just a bit of it left and I
trust that won't last much longer. (mostly just smooth skin by 6th. I
may have gotten a little overzealous and irritated the last bits,
causing them to fight back.) With this one I don't see a patch of dark
The smooth surfaced moles don't seem to have changed much.
Perhaps they aren't amenable to this particular treatment or mixture,
or perhaps they'll gradually become more rough surfaced and then start
to vanish like these two did. But these two always seemed to be rough.
I will say that rather extreme patience is required. I've
been trying three different substances on the moles for maybe 3 years
now. My best idea of what seems to be a "winning" formula is now to wet
the mole(s) with castor oil and baking soda paste at least daily, or
maybe twice daily, on crusty, rough surfaced moles. Very gently,
without physically/mechanicly agitating the mole.
I will continue to try on the smoother moles and see if I
can eventually eliminate them. At least I have two fewer to do now!
In 2018 a couple of fires
in California were so bad and so hot, and spread so fast, that people
were led to speculate that foul play was afoot - that it seemed like
some sort of bizarre conspiracy. The worst of it was that suddenly an
area would be ablaze when there seemed to be no way the fire could have
spread to there so fast from where it had been. I fell for these ideas
for a time myself. Now the 2020 California fire season has been even
worse, replacing 2018 as the worst in recorded history.
An article I read somewhere recently gave the real
are multiple. First of course is the inherently hot, dry summer climate
of California. This turns flammables into matchsticks waiting for a
source of ignition. California will always have fires.
Second is a century and more of putting out fires.
Normally fires burn up whatever there is to burn, which in California
was often but not big fires, for the very reason that it is so
flammable. What these
rather successful firefighting efforts have done is cause more and more
flammable material to pile up. Now when it ignites, the fires can be
Third is the population growth. People unable to afford
homes in the existing urban centers go farther afield and build new
towns such as Paradise in the margins between fields and forests, next
to all those flammables. That makes the fires more devastating to more
Fourth, global warming with excessively high temperatures
and drought contributes its part. The main effect is to exacerbate the
dryness, but it probably also makes it easier to ignite whatever there
is to burn.
(I will comment here that long-persisting jet trail clouds
covering the sky at high altitudes, damping the natural convective
forces that cause global wind circulations, whether incidental to jet
air travel or created deliberately, are the obvious cause of both extra
heat and of greater drought in many areas.)
In all this some critical threshold has been crossed, that
has set everything up for the recent cataclysms. When (it was never
a fire starts, it has far more dead, flammable wood to burn than ever
before, piling up in some places for a century. So instead of just
burning the understory and not getting up to the crowns of the trees,
the whole forest soon blazes up. When the fire reaches a certain size
everything flammable anywhere near the fire ignites ("flashover"), and
"firestorm" or "fire tornado" develops. If I understand correctly, this
phenomenon had never been seen since the firebombing of (eg) Dresden
and Tokyo in world war two. It now started occurring in California.
In this, a vortex of tornado or hurricane force winds
develops and sends flaming debris far up into the sky - I recall seeing
the figure 17,000 feet. This debris, still burning, can come down miles
away - downwind or upwind - and ignite whole new areas that no one
thought the fire could possibly reach so fast. It can destroy power
lines and knock out electrical stations.
Here then are explanations for some of the strange
phenomena that were being attributed to some mad arsonistic conspiracy:
savage winds that come up out of nowhere on a fairly calm day that seem
to rapidly spread a fire that otherwise should have been controllable,
and the incredibly fast spread of a fire, with fire suddenly raining
from the sky in a new area, for example on (eg) a town like Paradise
that just minutes before had
seemed to be a still a good distance from the fire, and perhaps, inside
fire tornado, the sudden ignition and fierce burning of guard rail
posts and sign posts (not to mention parked cars) over a considerable
stretch of road or highway.
Obscuring smoke in Victoria, BC
("ordinary") forest fires across the strait in Washington State.
For the previous 3 years it was BC that was having fires.
Wheat Growing Experiment
On the 7th I harvested the wheat from the open garden. The
stalks of the first planted kamut and red fife were yellow to brown.
The later planted ones were turning but most of the stalks still were
or still had some green.
But I snipped all the
scissors. My little by-hand harvest took half
an hour. I'll save most of it for some future planting, perhaps next
Later I bought a 10 Kg bag of kamut seeds/kernels from a
health food store. I may plant my front lawn next spring. (Hay, that's
less to mow!)
- Half picked
before I thought to take a picture
I had planted 4 blueberry plants in 2018. One
had lots of
tiny berries that year but died at the end of the summer in spite of
receiving exactly the same treatment as the other three as far as I
could tell. The other three had fewer but much larger berries - more
the size one finds in groceries. I thought one of those had died at the
end of 2019 - I almost yanked it out. It came back but had no berries
In late August I had picked around 1/2 a cup of
blueberries from the other two. (I used them in cookies and pie.) There
were still unripe ones. On the 8th, to my surprise I got another full
cup, which weighed in at 140g. So probably somewhere around 250-300g
total. Not bad for two little bushes! And apparently they grow bigger
than I thought, and I should have planted them substantially farther
apart -- and not under my livingroom bay window. I was more expecting
good harvests of cherries, apples and pears by now from trees planted
in 2017, but I'll go with what's working, and plant more blueberry
From the characteristics, the similar stems, leaves and
berries, I would
guess blueberries and salal are pretty closely related. But this year
the salal berries are all but refusing to come off the stems for some
reason, instead squishing if tugged at too hard. They haven't been
worth trying to pick.
The corn that the plastic
of didn't grow very well or produce any corn.
When small, half of it was shaded by the dirt pile behind
the fence, and it didn't even grow out of that shadow.
I did get a dozen delicious "half cobs" from the
at-first plastic covered patch by the house.
I think I made a mistake when I fed the chickens - just
two now - some bird seed which had been lying around in a plastic
bucket with a lid.
After that, they wouldn't eat chicken feed any more. On the 15th I
checked the chicken penthouse and found two small green eggs. My almost
5 month old hen was laying!
* Why does the "new year" begin at such an arbitrary time? Why
shouldn't it be right on the winter solstice, presently called December
Pretty much move everything ahead by 9 days. Then the summer solstice
and the two equinoxes would also fall on the transition dates between
two months. The whole calendar would make much more sense.
January, February, March: Winter Solstice to Spring Equinox.
April, May, June: Spring Equinox to Summer Solstice.
July, August, September: Summer Solstice to Autumnal Equinox.
October, November, December: Autumn Equinox to Winter Solstice.
* And while I'm at it, Why is February shorted by two days while
January and March each have an extra? If they each donated a day each
would have: 30-30-30-30-31-30-31-31-30-31-30-31 days. Since that's a
lop-sided (which it already is - 181 days in the first half, 184 days
in the second half - oscurred by
February), to even up the two halves of the year, perhaps the day
taken from August instead of March, making it:
The leap year day could be added
to any month - February for tradition, or perhaps to June, making it
the exact middle day of the year.
COVID-19 OVERREACTION CATASTROPHES
* Why were banks and other money lenders about the only commercial
institutions not included in the CoViD-19 shutdowns? It would have been
only reasonable that interest on loans should have ceased to accrue for
the same periods as all the other businesses were shut down and their
customers weren't permitted to go about their lives and occupations.
The same "time out" everyone else had to endure. Why was this one
blood-sucking piece of non-essential economy permitted to freely
collect? They are starting to find out that one can't suck any more
blood from the corpse of an economy that these utterly unequal terms
have very much helped to kill.
* From certain statistics it would appear there is a second wave of
CoViD-19. In fact, it's in large part an illusion derived from the fact
tests aren't perfect: there are about 2-1/2% false negatives and 2-1/2%
false positive results. In the spring, only people going to hospitals
were being tested. By the end of summer, tens of millions of people (UK
example) were being tested. If for example 20 million people were
tested, there would be about 500,000 "positive" "cases of CoViD" even
if NO ONE AT ALL ACTUALLY HAD CoViD. This might be funny except that
it's being used a reason (or pretext?) for a second "lock-down" (also
Victoria, Australia), even while only a small number of people are
actually getting the disease, entering hospital or dying.
Covid Testing: Bad Science Worse Policy
Dr. Chris Martenson Sept 22nd 2020
Actual CoViD deaths.
There does seem to be a bit of a "second wave", but not as
serious as the first. Probably Ivermectin treatment helps.
Geographical distribution might also be interesting to see.
(The very end of the graph drops off because data isn't in yet.
I don't know the URL for the graph, or I'd get an update.)
More and more doctors are warning that the health problems
accruing from the
simplistic focus on one virus are starting to result in far more
deaths from various other causes than from the virus. (And that's
without considering the economic calamity and disruption to the food
* Anyone who still thinks Palestinians are just rabble-rousing
terrorists who have little real justification for hating Israel should
probably look at this set of maps. It is awful what the Nazis did to
the Jews in World War Two. Has Jewish treatment of the Palestinians
been morally superior? Is Israel practicing their own "final solution"
to "the Palestinian problem"? Last I heard they were still continuing
to bulldoze Palestinian homes and "settle" their land with Jews. As I
it, "Palestinian lands" are now little more than concentration camps.
(Eccentric Silliness Department)
* "Stop Procrastinating!" Isn't there something ironic about that
order? Isn't stopping exactly what procrastinating is? (I guess that
makes it a double negative.)
* I am a procrastinator. I crastinate much better than
* The new version of OpenSCAD offers two views: "Orthogonal" and
"Perspective". I wonder what an "Orthogon" is?
* Militium: a one man militia.
"in depth reports" for
each project are below. I hope they may be useful to anyone who wants
to get into a similar project, to glean ideas for how something
might be done, as well as things that might have been tried, or just
of and not tried... and even of how not to do something - why
work or proved impractical. Sometimes they set out inventive thoughts
almost as they occur - and are the actual organization and elaboration
in writing of those thoughts. They are thus partly a diary and are not
extensively proof-read for literary perfection, consistency,
completeness and elimination of duplications before
publication. I hope they add to the body of wisdom for other
researchers and developers to help them find more productive paths and
avoid potential pitfalls and dead ends.
Ground Effect Vehicle (1/4 scale model)
(24th) Someone wrote and asked me when the launch date would be. Busy
as I was, it was really bothering me that I wasn't getting at my energy
and electric transport projects except for the shortest and easiest
I pulled out the old battery and set the new ones in,
using epoxy and styrene foam to make padded comparments for them. There
was lots more room for these smaller but more powerful batteries. I
wired one up and tried it out.
At last, success!: the ducted fan blew up a storm. It had a
ferocious, loud whine. It blew a calender off a nearby wall. And it
slid easily across 3 different surfaces and then even a carpet, which
was anything but slippery, twisting in sharp turns since only one fan
was running. It looked like it would have plenty of power with two to
get airborne with a very short take-off run.
Again I note that after most of the first tests, I would
absently turn the handheld transmitter/control off, and instead of
stopping when it lost signal, the motor would rev up to full power and
the model would start racing off. Heartstopper! I would quickly turn it
back on and then turn off the circuit breaker in the model to turn off
the motor power.
There's no way I'm letting this thing loose outside without reversing
that! If I ever lost control, it could be gone out of sight and far
away in a flash, or else ram into a tree or rock at high speed. It is a
complete mystery to me why they would make the throttle controls
backward like that. It seems to make no sense at all.
I wired up the other side, then moved the receiver across
and switched the control over. It ran and had a loud sound, but the
model didn't move. It was turning in reverse. I swapped two phases to
the motor and it worked great like the other one.
It was nice to have the batteries plug in with the T-Plug
connectors so they were easy to remove for charging.
Well, I got something done. Then I went off to
other things that were calling me. Hopefully I can put in some more
short work sessions and get it all done ...soon.
* More mountings (styrene foam blocks) to hold the batteries, and
maybe the circuit breakers, in place.
* Make the controls for the two motors operate in some rational
way. (Note it steers by adjusting the two motors.)
* Wire up the 7-wire socket to connect the balance charger's 7
wires to the battery's 7-wire plug.
Later I remembered I had some mixed epoxy in the freezer
from gluing my cracked shovel handle two days previously. It sets in
hours at room temperature, but takes the better part of a week in the
freezer, getting a little more viscous each day. (And I had then used
some of it to make an epoxied 'sleeve' of polypropylene strapping for
my epoxy-repaired wood-handle splitting maul. I had been meaning to do
that for a long time.) I thought I might as well put the small remnant
back in the freezer "just in case" I found a use for it. If not, it
would simply set, as it would quickly do anyway if not kept cold.
I cut some styrene foam blocks to fit and I managed to
'squeeze' out enough epoxy to glue them inside the foam hulls.
[26th] Surely the best way to make the control circuit would be with
operational amplifiers (opamps). Since the power was just +5 volts and
the control signals were 0 to 5 volts, obviously a 5 volt opamp with
rail to rail outputs would be needed. No need to look that up - the
obvious choice would be a CA3260 dual opamp, in the 8 pin DIP package.
Now, where were they? I looked around my shop and racked
my brain... where were the tubes of IC chips I used to have? I started
to have a bad feeling they must have been thrown out when I moved. I
got on line and ordered some via AliExpress.com . (And some heatsinks
for LED COB lights while I was at it.) But if I couldn't find any
kicking around somewhere, it meant yet another delay waiting for parts
on the slow boat from China.
Regardless of that, I had yet to lay out the circuit in
EAGLE PCB, too,
and make the PCB. With renting out my unprepared travel trailer the
rest of the month (and well into October) was too busy for words, let
for working on an energy project.
"Green" Electric Equipment Projects
Month of September Log of Solar
Power Generated [and grid power consumed]
times are in PST: clock 48 minutes ahead of sun, not PDT which is an
hour and 48 minutes ahead. DC power output readings - mostly the
water heater for some months, then just lights - are reset to zero
daily (for just lights, occasionally), while the others are
Solar: House, Trailer => total KWH [grid power meter
reading(s)@time] Sky conditions
Km = electric car drove distance, then car was charged.
31st 928.45, 188.97
=> 6.50 [76121@20:30; 55Km (plugged
in later) Mostly cloudy, a bit of sun.
01st 930.38, 190.07 => 3.03 [76141@24:30] Mor cloudz and rain.
02d 932.56, 191.29 => 3.40 [55Km; 76156@20:00] Yet
mor uv thu same.
03rd 937.41, 194.09 => 7.65 [76169@20:00; 35Km] Clouds but no
04th 939.93, 195.45 => 3.88 [25Km; 76192@19:30] same
05th 943.57, 197.53 => 5.72 [35+60+35 Km; 76220@20:00]
06th (est. 6 KWH) Awg! What happened?!? [76236 (per BC Hydro)] Cloudy
all day. Again.
07th 954.31, 204.15 => 11.36 (17.36; attr. 6KWH to 6th)
First fully sunny day since July! (Except for jet trails filling the
sky... but no flights coming here since last March.)
08th 961.80, 208.55 => 11.89 [35+50+35Km; 76263@19:00] Cloudy early
AM, sunny rest of day! (Wow, no jet trails!)
09th 969.27, 212.88 => 11.80 [76275@19:30] Sunny all day! (Wow, 3 in
a row! Few, light jet trails.)
10th 976.21, 217.13 => 11.36 [76271@80:00] Sunny again FOUR in a
row! Wow! Mowed lawn.
11th 983.42, 221.47 => 11.55 [85Km; 76300@20:00] Sunny! FIVE of a
kind - great poker hand!
12th 988.93, 224.47 => 9.51 [55Km; 76314@21:30] Hazy,
not clear. Still not bad!
13th 990.71, 225.65 => 2.96 [76333@18:30; 45Km] Cloudy.
14th 992.55, 226.72 => 2.91 [55Km; 76353@20:30] More
15th 998.55, 230.32 => 9.60 [76366@19:30] Haze again.
From forest fires in Washington? Air at ground is clear.
16th 1004.96,234.17 => 10.26 [85Km; 76389@19:30] Haze was quite
17th 1009.16,236.40 => 6.43 [55Km; 76407@20:00] Haze
turned to fog. Might be light smoke? ...Yes, forest fire near Prince
18th 1012.45,238.39 => 5.28 [85Km; 76423@18:00] some
"sun" (smoke,haze,fog), some clouds.
19th 1014.64,239.66 => 3.46 [55Km; 76454@19:00] clouds,
20th 1017.12,240.73 => 3.56 [76473@19:00] Cloudy again. Sun
showed for moments only.
21th 1020.40,242.58 => 5.13 [76484@18:00] Another dull
equinox, sometimes a little brighter.
22th 1021.01,242.83 => 0.86 ]76497@18:30] High wind and
rain. More from the windplant (not recorded - up to 150W much of the
day) than from solar.
23rd 1024.33,245.27 => 5.76 [50Km; 76518@19:30] Sunny
briefly in AM, cloudy all day, bit of rain.
24th 1027.11,246.88 => 4.39 [76531@20:00] Mostly clouds
and rain. Once I saw my shadow.
25th 1029.86,248.55 => 4.42 [76549@19:00] Mor ov Same
26th 1033.30,250.82 => 5.71 [55Km; 87581@20:00] Some
rain, but quite a lot of sun... what happened to production? And what
happened to 32KWH ?!? From a little bedroom heat? Oh, and some other
27th 1034.27,251.37 => 1.52 [76610@20:30] Rain.
28th 1035.66,252.13 => 2.15 [76630@18:30] Morrain.
29th 1037.99,253.48 => 3.68 [76650@18:00] Cloudy, misty
30th 1039.13,254.06 => 1.72 [55Km; 76685@22:00] Cloudy,
01th 1041.68,255.46 => 3.95 [76707@19:00] Just cloudy.
02d 1044.39,257.38 => 4.63 [85Km; 76737@21:00] Some sun
(yay!) and some mist.
03rd 1047.36,258.87 => 4.46 [35Km; 76752@22:30] Clouds,
then mostly sunny PM.
04th 1050.03,260.62 => 4.42 [76787@22:00] Some sun
again. Rain toward evening.
Daily KWH from solar panels. (Compare September 2020 with August
2020 & with September 2019.)
|September 2020 (12 panels)
|August 2020 (12 panels)
|Sept. 2019 (12 Panels)
|Ain't no sunshine
when it's gone!
|0 (ZERO really sunny
days in August!)
Monthly Tallies: Solar Generated KWH [Power used from grid KWH]
March 1-31: 116.19 + ------ + 105.93 = 222.12 KWH - solar [786 KWH -
April - 1-30: 136.87 + ------ + 121.97 = 258.84 KWH [608 KWH]
May - 1-31: 156.23 + ------ + 147.47 = 303.70 KWH [543 KWH] (11th
solar panel connected on lawn on 26th)
June - 1-30: 146.63 + 15.65 + 115.26 = 277.54 KWH [374 KWH] (36V, 250W
Hot Water Heater installed on 7th)
July - 1-31: 134.06 + 19.06 + 120.86 = 273.98 KWH [342 KWH]
August 1-31:127.47 + 11.44+91.82+(8/10)*96.29 = 307.76 KWH [334 KWH]
(12th panel connected on lawn Aug. 1)
Sept.- 1-30: 110.72 + 15.30 + 84.91 = 210.93 KWH [408 KWH]
(solar includes 2/10 of 96.29)
Oct. - 1-31: 55.67 + 13.03 + 51.82 = 120.52 KWH, solar
[635 KWH - from grid]
Nov. - 1-30: 36.51 + 6.31 + 26.29 = 69.11
KWH, solar [653 KWH - from grid]
Dec. - 1-23: 18.98 + .84* + 11.70 =
KWH, solar + wind [711 KWH + 414 (while away) = 1125 from grid]
Jan. - 6-31: 17.52 + ------* + 10.61 = 28.13 KWH,
wind [1111 KWH from grid]
Feb. - 1-29: 56.83 + ------* + 35.17 = 92.00 KWH,
solar + wind [963 KWH from grid]
* Now the solar DC system is only running a couple of
lights - not worth reporting. So there's just the 2 grid tie systems:
house and "roof over travel trailer".
One year of solar!
March - 1-31: 111.31 + 87.05 = 198.37 KWH solar total
[934 KWH from grid]
April - 1-30: 156.09 + 115.12 = 271.21 [784 KWH
May - 1-31: 181.97 + 131.21 = 313.18 KWH
Solar [723 KWH from grid]
June - 1-30: 164.04 + 119.81 = 283.82 KWH Solar [455 KWH
July - 1-31: 190.13 + 110.05 = 300.18 KWH Solar [340
KWH from grid]
August- 1-31: 121.81 + 83.62 = 205.43 KWH Solar [385KWH
Sept. - 1-30: 110.68 + 65.09 = 175.77 KWH Solar [564 KWH
used from grid]
Things Noted - September 2020
* As the sun got lower, both the maximum generated and the daily totals
kept dropping. Fully sunny days made over 11 KWH instead of 18 (the
early summer best). If the
panels were tilted farther to the south, say 30 or 40° instead of
only 15, it would obviously make a big difference all year except
during the summer.
* And the days got shorter fast. The equinox (Sept. 21st) is of course
when the rate of transition from long days to short is greatest, and at
53.4°N, that change is from about 18 hours daylight in June to 6 in
* The string of bright days early in the month looked so promising.
Alas, it didn't last. Like August, it was cloudier than September last
year, which was cloudier than 2018.
lasting, low cost, high energy batteries
Wow... With everything ready to make what should be the
best cell so far... yet again... Sorry, no report!
Haida Gwaii, BC Canada