Thursday, September 8, 2011

Rolling Along On The Week Of Vacation (working)

Well, life throws many challenges at us. It is how we handle them that really matters. While I have my personal agenda, finishing the mobile cottage on my plate, my partner Stet who has dedicated his time, resources, facility and knowledge to this project has had to face a personal family related medical issue that has taken his focus from our project (and rightly so). I wish him and his family the best. Thankfully, standing in for him during this time has been Norm. Norm probably has more building knowledge in his little pinky then I have gathered in my life.

This is really the last week of time I will have in Olympia working on this project. Next weekend will be spent moving so I am feeling a bit of pressure to really get as much done as possible. The first thing on my agenda was getting the electrical in and ready for power. I am there, it was finished yesterday from the electrical room standpoint. I will start working on all the plugs and switches as time allows but to my mind that is cosmetic. They at least have something to connect to.

As an explanation of the panel the bottom item is the Blue Sky solar boost, above that is my AC panel, above that is the DC panel with the two cut off switches, one for the Solar Panels, one for the Battery connects. The below picture show the 1500 watt inverter.

The next project was laying out the Kitchen counter. Here are some pictures of the carcass of the structure.

We set up camp today outside today, mid 80's and glorious in Olympia. The outside station was a great option and as you can see I brought in from my storage locker the last of the Beetle Kill Pine. What a great decision that was to buy that stuff. What I thought was cool on Craigslist was awesome. Here is our working station.

Here are some interior shots of the mobile cottage. They do not do it justice, I will be proud to call this home.

 These wheel well boxes have Norm all over them. I just never could have done this without him. They came out just incredible.
And as I promised on the last post here are two shots of my little chimney. I am pleased with our progress and am looking to lay the loft on Friday and to get the door installed. I will try to whip in a post before Sunday.


  1. First- let me just say again how amazingly helpful these posts you did on your power system are. My struggle is that I want to build a system that is ready to expand to solar, but will still work without it. The batteries and panels just aren't in my budget right now. Here's my question: Could this system work without the batteries or the solar panels? Like for some reason you just don't have the batteries or the solar panels hooked up- just a hot AC lead from the grid-- would this work? Presuming that you just hooked the battery charging wires from the inverter straight to the DC panel.

  2. The type of Inverter I have does not need to have solar panels, I don't know how it react if I had no battery, even if it is just one. That being said, I am set up to run off the grid directly and as an option use the solar so in answer to your question, you can set up the exact same set up I have and add the Inverter, batteries, solar at a later date.

  3. Thanks for the reply. Yeah, your system drawings are super helpful to look at as I figure this stuff out!

    I'm confused though, If you didn't have the inverter or batteries in your system, what would produce the DC power? You'd have to have some sort of converter to feed your DC Panel i think.

    Solar is def. out of my budget in the first phase of the build, so I'm just trying to set things up so it will be as easy as possible to add later.

    1. Well with no Batteries and no solar, then the entire DC system would just lay idle. You could get a small DC battery charger and just hook that up to the Battery terminals. I not sure that is a long term solution but as a stop gap until you found an old car battery or something it would work, though not recommended.