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  1. Rednecktek

    Is my SCC dead or something else?

    So I was out having a smoke at ungodsly hours this morning (because jet lag) and I noticed my driveway lights were really dim. I figured it was just the fact that it's fall in Western WA and we haven't seen the sun in weeks that the poor system just hasn't been fed enough. So I headed down...
  2. Rednecktek

    Choices, choices, not so many choices... Which one gang?

    So evidently the battery on my truck is dead... again... and I'm just going to give up and glue a panel to the roof and wire it into a cheapie PWM controller to keep the thing topped up while I'm deployed. I was looking at flexible panels and I figure 50w would be plenty to just keep the...
  3. Rednecktek

    Downsides to LFP's? Sooo many questions and no bandwidth for videos.

    So as a complete newbie to building batteries, as in I haven't even tried building a set yet, I keep seeing all these complications and "Gotcha's" when building a battery bank. I usually use FLA's and AGM's because my primary usage case is a camp that is A)unattended for 6-8 months at a time...
  4. Rednecktek

    I'm having an idea for off-grid heat... doodle check?

    So I was thinking to myself, after reading all these threads about people trying to have heat on a solar system and how that just never ends well, that there's got to be a better way of making a portable, emergency use, off-grid source of heating the house... and I was bored. :) So my...
  5. Rednecktek

    Need to upgrade my solar for the dog

    Just saw this and I think I'm going to need to upgrade my solar array. Think the wife will let me have one if I promise to scoop the poop and pick up the casings? :) Super Dog!!
  6. Rednecktek

    So what's the general verdict on the anti-sulfating Battery Life Saver modules?

    So I haven't used one before, and sometimes they sound a bit snake-oily, but on the other hand the military uses them all over the place. Has anyone here used one? Did you notice a difference? Is there a major difference between the liquid additive versions and the electronic versions? Is it...
  7. Rednecktek

    WTB: MPP LV1012 or other 12v AIO for a basic solar class - Seattle area

    Anyone got an old 12v AIO system they'll let go cheap? I'm looking at teaching a basics intro-to-solar class and I've got everything I need other than a basic 12v inverter and a "This Is How You Cheat" AIO. I'm trying to make as much of it as practical as I can so we'll be wiring up panels and...
  8. Rednecktek

    Wind controller for hydro?

    So my neighbor is trying to get a micro turbine on his spring and I'm trying to do the research on the wiring involved. Right now I think he just has a AC->DC 3ph rectifier and he's trying to pipe that into a solar charge controller. Fortunately for me he's still in the parts & assembly phase...
  9. Rednecktek

    Double post, delete please

    Stupid slow satellite internet double posting lag! Grrrrrr
  10. Rednecktek

    I want to play with the wind, recommendations?

    So I was thinking, at my cabin I have an old TV antenna up on the roof that does precisely nothing, not even FM radio. I spend 6+ months at a time away from the camp and I was thinking to myself, "Myself, I wonder if you could throw a small turbine up there to help keep the batteries topped...
  11. Rednecktek

    Yet another inverter recommendation thread, 24v, 2500-ish watts, under $350 in the US

    So I'm looking on Amazon and Watts247 and SignatureSolar and I'm striking out trying to find an inverter for my sheds project. Does anyone here know or know of an inverter that fits ALL of my criteria? Or just tell me I'm smoking crack. :) 1: 24v Input 2: 120v Output 3: 2500-3000W range 4...
  12. Rednecktek

    Growwatt Config File?

    Hey Growwatt users, got a quick question for y'all. When you load your GrowwattWareBrowserApp and talk to your unit, I'm assuming it lets you poke around in all the battery and charge and operational settings, right? Once it's configured, can you save that configuration to a file and stick it...
  13. Rednecktek

    Check my work time, version 1.0!

    OK Guys, I think I've got this all figured out and drawn up as best I can in Paint (I thought I had Visio, guess not). Notes: The MPPT Topping Charger is for keeping the batteries topped up when I'm gone for 6 or 7 months at a time. I couldn't get the lines to connect in Paint but it will...
  14. Rednecktek

    Inverter parallel wiring, is there a reason I can't do this?

    So here on the ship we don't run 1 AWGinormous wire from the generator to the main switchboard, we break it up into 6 smaller wires bolted to each lug on either end. This is to make it physically possible to run that much power and still bend wires without putting so much amperage through them...
  15. Rednecktek

    Doing a proper power audit, what equipment?

    So I need to do a proper power audit, and I could get a cheapy Kill-A-Watt type thing, but that wouldn't tell me what I want to know as far as usage based on time of day, surge draw, etc. All my power comes in on a 120v line from my generator so I could plug something in between the generator...
  16. Rednecktek

    Given the choice, 1 limited system or 2 systems?

    So I'm pondering my options for my cabin and I can't decide if I want 1 system nerfed on panels or do 2 completely different systems. My cabin has an existing 12v system powering lights and heaters and fans, so I MUST retain 12v in there. I'd like to throw an inverter in so I can turn off the...
  17. Rednecktek

    Worth the extra? An AIO Comparison question

    OK guys, I'm looking at doing 2 systems and I'm torn between the MPP and the Growwatt versions. The Growatt has a definate price premium over the MPP and I'm curious what more I'm getting for that price premium? Both systems will be on FLA or AGM batteries for whatever that's worth and...
  18. Rednecktek

    Someone want to check me on my plan?

    So I know it's a "Bad Thing" to parallel more than 4 batteries, but what about paralleling paralleled batteries? This is my current thought given my budget, the amount of shelf space I have for batteries, and the desire to cut all loads on the batteries that I can when I leave for 6 months. I...
  19. Rednecktek

    Pro's and Con's of each battery type?

    So I know a little about batteries, but I've never found a comprehensive list on the pro's and cons of each battery type, so I thought I'd just poll here for input and any corrections, and info that I don't have. It may be a good to add into the FAQ option in the future too. To start: FLA -...
  20. Rednecktek

    In other news: A couple interesting articles

    So my other favorite news site ArsTechnica has posted a couple articles lately that I thought might go over well, so I figured I'd pass them along. Self Sustaining House On Wheels - The creators of a new “self-sustaining house on wheels” are hoping their strange-looking project will help spark...
  21. Rednecktek

    Current best source for battery packs?

    So what's the best source nowadays for 2nd life battery packs? I've read and heard too many horror stories about "Grade A" bloated overrated LiFe cells, and EBay seems like a pretty sketchy source. I know I can go to places like Watts247 to get used panels, but is there a decent source for...
  22. Rednecktek

    Simplest way to keep a battery warm?

    So my FLA batteries spend months at a time not doing anything and while I can keep them topped up, seeing -10F on the thermometer isn't uncommon. I'm planning on building an insulated box for the batteries, but I know nothing about heating pads/blankets/wires/cats running off the solar to...
  23. Rednecktek

    AC Breakers vs Fuses?

    So I have seen a few videos where the person used a 3ph A/C breaker as both the battery disconnect and the protection rather than just bolting in a fuse or block and having to break out the wrenches if it needed servicing. Is this a bad idea for any reason? It seems that if you have the space...
  24. Rednecktek

    How to determine panel info?

    OK guys, my neighbor has a mix of 2nd and 3rd hand panels at his place and not a one of them has a data sticker or model number on it. I know I can stick it in the sun and throw on a DVM to get an idea of the VoC which will tell me the nominal voltage (I'm thinking they're all 12v-ish, but he...
  25. Rednecktek

    Looking to fix my neighbor's place... long story ahead!

    OK guys, looking for a sanity check here. My neighbors in NE Washington are totally off grid and, let's be honest, their system is a nightmare. Since the guy looks after my place the 48 weeks a year I'm at sea, and doesn't mind me doing a little experimentation, we're looking to completely...