Saturday, June 29, 2019

A Lot of Junk!

30 Yards of Junk
Not much going on with the trailer.  I have to take it in for new tires & an inspection next week.  

This week was spent cleaning out the various storage areas around the house.  I ordered a 30 yard roll off, and probably could have filled a 40 yard.  In any case, I cleaned out much of the barn, attic, basement & garage.  It is amazing how much "stuff" one tends to keep because "I'm sure I'll use that in the future", then forgetting that it is buried somewhere, you buy what ever it was anyway.  

The roll off only held part of the stuff - I had a "Free" table out in front of the driveway that got filled (and emptied) each day, and a full truck load went to the local Goodwill.  

Somehow, it looks like I didn't get rid of all that much, and I might be able to fill another roll off.  I think I'll wait until next year!

Until next time - 

Saturday, June 15, 2019

It's Done!

My converting to lithium project is finished (well, I still have to add a plate over the hole where the old GoPower solar controller was located; it is on order, but hasn't yet arrived).  While I haven't done any actual camping with the new batteries & components, I did do some testing.

The other day I used the microwave to pull down the batteries by 6 amp hours (a couple of minutes heating a cup of water at a 12V draw of 154 amps).  The solar was shut off, and the new converter pumped 34.7 amps into the batteries until almost full, at which point it tapered to float & almost no current.

Today I took the trailer to Seven 0's to have the refrigerator serviced, the bearings repacked, and the brakes checked & adjusted.  While there I sat in one of the most comfortable folding chairs I've ever been in, so they suckered me into buying one.

On the way home I switched the refrigerator to 12V to see how the truck & solar panels would do.  The refrigerator draws 24.5 amps on 12V.  It was mostly cloudy for the trip home, and using the Victron battery monitor remote on my iPhone, I watched it go from as little as -18 amps to as high as +6 amps.  It was a 50 mile drive on back roads to home, and by the time I was back in the driveway I had lost 12 amp hours.

The verdict?  I will still keep using propane while driving.  Maybe on a cloudless day I could break even or even do a little charging while driving down the road, but overall the refrigerator simply draws too much to guarantee arriving with charged batteries.

On an entirely different front, since I was moving the trailer, I would have access to my flower window box, so I picked up some flowers to plant.  It is about 12' long, and I cleared out the left over growth from last year as I planted the new flowers.  As I hit the last section, the old growth was actually an active bird's nest!  A pair of what I think are robins were in a nest almost even with the dirt in the box.  I left that section unplanted, and hope they will fledge before I have to water the stuff I already planted.

Not much else is happening.  I passed my annual physical with flying colors, I'm still adjusting to living in a house rather than a trailer, and already have the urge for a camping trip.  Right now there are far too many projects that built up over the 8 months I was away for me to get away, but if the weather cooperates, I'll get them cleaned up.

Until Next Time -

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Converting to Lithium

Battleborn Lithium Batteries
For a number of reasons, I decided to replace the 6V lead acid batteries in my trailer with a pair of 100 amp hour lithium batteries. Rather than stick the pages of text & many photos here, I'll provide a link to the page I started at LakeshoreImages.  I'll be updating the page ad the project progresses.

Changing from Lead Acid to Lithium Batteries.

Until Next Time -

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Home From the Spring Fling

The Fruit Trees Are In Bloom
Day 8, Oswego, NY - 219.7 miles, 819.2 for the trip.

I didn't get out of the campground until around 9:30, hanging around in the trailer hoping the rain would stop. Light rain, but I had to dump the trailer tanks, so that meant standing out in it for a bit. No problems dumping, although the water was shut off at the dump station. I used my outside shower to rinse the dump hose.

I drove the same route as last year, through the Adirondacks, picking up NY 3 and following it through Watertown & to 104B, 104, and home. The rain cleared up as I traveled west.

The daffodils have passed their prime, the tulips have just about had it, but the cherry & crab apple trees are in full bloom.

Dinner was the microwave Healthy Choice Honey Balsamic Chicken steamer I was going to have the other night when the microwave fuse broke.

Until the Lithium project starts -

Monday, May 20, 2019

Spring Fling Trip, Day 7

Lincoln Pond
Day 7, Lincoln Pond DEC Campground, Adirondacks State Park, NY, Day 2

As previously mentioned, Lincoln pond is a "rustic" campground, with most of the sites un level & "interesting" to back into. The sites along the pond are the nicest, but even some of them have difficult entries for a 21' trailer. I took a few photos of the pond in between thunderstorms yesterday, more at today's LakeshoreImages page.

I was down 24 amp hours by noon with little sun in site (and lots of shade it there was some), so as an experiment, I dug out my 900/700 watt propane generator, hooked it up to my 1 gallon propane tank & fired it up. I had to shut off the 120V side of the water heater, and put the refrigerator on propane rather than automatic, but the little generator brought the batteries back around 6 amps per hour using the WFCO converter.

I built a fire during the afternoon to use some of the free firewood, but it was only fair - everything is wet. That was about it for the day. Heavy clouds, but no rain with temperatures in the low 70's during the afternoon.

Dinner was just a sandwich.

Until Tomorrow -