Saturday, April 22, 2017

Misc Updates

Well, I spoke too soon. The heated liner and gloves have been put to use again. It was only 16°F on Monday morning though it did eventually warm up to just above freezing. Today's (Wednesday) challenge in addition to the cold was strong, gusty NE winds so if I was riding in any direction where the wind was from the sidecar side of the rig, I needed to shift my weight to the right. The sidecar was definitely wanting to fly today. You can definitely feel when the sidecar wheel unloads. The NWS was saying 19 mph winds with gusts to 45 mph. In the picture, the dirty snow behind the rig is actually a huge pile as there is a pretty steep drop off.

Before disconnecting the battery bank, I had one more minor piece that I needed to install and test. A small DC-DC convertor (circled in red) so I could run the Raspberry Pi directly off of the battery bank instead of through the inverter. There will be a small parasitic draw from the Trimetric monitor and the Raspberry Pi even as they are connected before the main cutoff switches. It looks like the parasitic draw is around 100ma. This would eventually drain the battery bank to 50% in ~3 months but the plan is to remove the batteries during the winter. The small white labels next to the breakers are to remind me to disconnect the solar panels before turning off the charge controller. And to turn the controller on before connecting the panels. I'm using the 50amp circuit breakers as DC switches. In the picture they are both "tripped" or "off".

I also had to disassemble the serial cable, grind down the DB9 connector and reassemble the cable with the flat cable coming out the other side so it didn't interfere with the charge controller cover. After re-assembly, I took the opportunity to not only test the cable but also the Dell netbook with a fresh install of Windows 7. It connected and recognized the MorningStar Tristar using their proprietary MSview software. The software allows a lot of control over the individual charge parameters. Right now I'm just using the defaults for flooded, lead acid, deep cycle. After testing, I realized that I should've taken the opportunity to shorten the cable. It came 6' long but I only need it to be 6".

Friday Evening - The system is now partially disassembled and starting to get boxed up. The battery bank is sitting in the truck now and time to start getting everything else sorted out and packed. I'm trying to figure out all of the tools I need to get everything installed. Everytime I go out to the garage I think of something else. Now that the pallet is empty, I can use the space to start sorting things into boxes. 

10 comments:

SonjaM said...

A cold but clear day, that's all what you can ask for giving the time of the year, and your neck of the woods Richard. We have had a mix of rain and sleet all week, and it just started clearing up, yet there is a chill in the air that has likely harmed the early bloomers.

Trobairitz said...

16 degrees. Brrrr. You'll think you hit the tropics when you get to Corvallis. Still rainy but at least our lows are in the 40's.

david R said...

Pack by the "walk around" method. Look into tool drawers, inside cabinets and on shelves. You'll see things that would be handy to have along. I use this method for truck and bike trips and have been known to take too much stuff, but you never know...

David Masse said...

I love it when you get all technical. I was missing that, and it turns out that all the blogs fell out of my Blogger widget. The good news is now everyone is back in my virtual neighborhood (I think, I hope).

Anyway, sorry about the frigid weather, but I swear I had nothing to do with it.

RichardM said...

I guess you're right. After all, it's only April.

RichardM said...

I'm dreading temperatures in the 100s. 40s sounds nice.

RichardM said...

The tool pile has been growing since I'm going to be doing some repairs before Bridget gets down there.

RichardM said...

It warms up around here when it gets cold in your area. At least in the winter. Not sure about now...

redlegsrides said...

Hope you're better than I am at tracking where things go when packing for a major trip!

RichardM said...

I gotta admit that I'm using Excel to keep track of what is going in each box. Way too easy to lose track of things