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    Border Collie working dogs, Contra dance, Photography, Classic buses
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  1. Since the lithium batteries I'm using (Valence) don't have any protection built in (only cell balancing), I've designed a protection system. It will totally disconnect the battery bank from everything if things go awry. It will also turn on a compartment cooling fan or turn on a heat pad if called for. I have it bread boarded and the code written. For you coders out there mine is probably a bit clunky but, it works. Not really necessary but nice for a bit of bling I'm working on a screen to see what temps and voltages are. Also working on a data logger to see what triggered an event.
  2. One: Richard Bruner Two: USN Three: 4 years 1967-1971. Four: PO2 (E5) Five: Naval Air ground support mechanic/electritian. Six: NAS Memphis,NAS Key West, USS Constellation (CVA-64)
  3. The Battleborn liths, more or less, use the same charger parameters as AGMs, if your charger/controller works with AGMs it will work with liths. Check with Battleborn. You DO NOT want to charge lithium batteries when they are below freezing. I believe Battleborns have an internal BMS that prevents this. I have installed a heating pad under mine. Check the dimensions, as others have said two in parallel would probably more than double your usable amp hours. Any kind of bracket/cradle would be quite easy as long as the new batteries are equal to or same as your current batteries. There is tons of info available about the Battleborns.
  4. I was never really happy with my lead acid house bank. 400 Ah of which I could only use 50%. I recently came across a really good deal on some Valence U27-12XP 12volt 138Ah batteries. They are used but, after getting the information from the internal BMS I find than none have 200 complete cycles of the 2000 or so available. So I now have 80% of 552 Ah. I've only had them operational for a couple of weeks but, I'm VERY pleased. At about the same time my inverter/charger died so I installed a Victron multiplus hybrid inverter and, I'm thrilled with it. It's fully programmable and the hybrid part works great. I often go to a place where I get 15A of questionable AC I had to be very careful of what I turned on or voltage would drop below 108. I was at the site for over a week and, within reason, I could turn on what I wanted. When the shore power is too low the inverter simply adds what is needed. When the power requirement drops it goes back to charging. Not even a flicker in the computers. I also got a good deal on 6 255 watt solar panels but, haven't gotten them installed yet. More to come.
  5. After 4 years I finally have a shower door. 😎 It also serves as a night light.
  6. I just finished and installed a mirror/makeup cabinet for mumsywumsy. It features dimable LED lights using a hall effect switch to turn on the lights. It is also hinged since it's pretty close to the wall in driving position. It's really hard to get a decent picture because of all the mirrors so, here's a video. mirror_cabinet.mp4
  7. Having had various brands of battery operated tools only to have the battery made of unobtanium when it needed to be replaces. I have pretty much switched to DeWalt 20V. I've had good luck so far and don't have to buy a complete kit every time. Their chainsaw is awesome.
  8. The hydraulic one is $3700, electric is $3000. I don't think that includes the custom built part that attaches to the car. It weighs 128 lbs. And you still need an auxiliary brake system. Looks like you could easily exceed 1000 lbs hitch weight. Front wheel drive or 4 wheel drive with lockout only. I don't see any pluses.
  9. I love my Shaper Origin. I occasionally need a printed circuit board for some project or other. In the past I have etched them with acid. Messy and time consuming. I would draw the picture, print it with a printer, heat transfer that onto the board then dunk it in the acid solution which would eat the copper layer off. Then I would have to very carefully drill all of the holes. With the SO I still have to draw it up. There was a bit of trial and error before I figured out cut settings. The last one, the top one in the above picture, took about ten minutes. This method puts the holes exactly in the right places. Accuracy is exceptional for a hand held tool. That board is less than an inch tall. This is a few of the mistakes, as you can see I can even cut the piece out.
  10. I'm having fun with it. The speaker grill on the first page of this post was done with it. I love working with walnut. The speaker grill started as a log in a back field. The wood for that one I sawed into a piece small enough to fit in my band saw with my chainsaw. I had to make a sled that would carry an 8 ft log to cut it into boards. The wood I have now was cut into boards for free at a local steam show. I got a lot of good wood out of what was left after the timber buyer got what they want. When did I ever have time to work for a living. 😎 As a cross country truck driver one year I only slept in the bed at home 39 nights.
  11. Playing with walnut and my Shaper Origin. Bad weather is starting to set in so I'm spending more time in the shop. I just finished some new LED light fixtures. This is 43" long. Detail of fixture. Bracket detail. Next project is a makeup mirror/station cabinet for DW out of walnut. D ick
  12. Richard great looking coach, I like the older ones that were converted and hardly used. I'm in Genoa City doing event photography 3 or for times during the summer.
  13. Well, some of my things are really inefficient. I bought the boiler and pumps new off of ebay for a VERY good price. But, they are 24V so I have to take 120VAC from the inverter and convert that to 24VDC for the heat. I don't know about 3/8 I've not seen the aluminum panels for that size. I used the aluminum in as many places I could get it. There are a few cold spots on the floor they are where there is no aluminum. The flooring is 3/4 plywood with a plastic coating on each side. Floor is warm in below 0° temps. The pex is laid into 2 inch styrofoam insulation and 3/4 plywood on top of that. I'm only 5' 8" and mumsywumsy is shorter, I still have plenty of headroom. I've seen discussion of cooling that way before. Seems condensation might be a problem and may be more trouble to build for the cooling gained. I have mini split AC for that. Works quite well.
  14. I drove cross country semi for 20 years. Only the last few years did I have a "truckers" gps and they are grossly wrong. I tried 3 different brands and all have their problems. If you stick to interstates , unless clearly marked, all underpasses are at least 13 ft 6 in. We hauled specialized and regularly went into residential neighborhoods. Don't obsess over it and PAY ATTENTION, most but not all places that are under 13' 6" are clearly marked. I've been in more places that I had to back out of because I couldn't make a turn than any low clearance problem. D ick
  15. In response to a private message about my heat, I'll answer here in case anyone else might like to see. Since no one told me I couldn't do it this way. My boiler, hot water heater and 2 manifolds are 3/4 inch. The manifolds, supply/return are 1/2 inch out. There is a pump in each of the four heat loops that are controlled by the thermostats. All of the loops are1/2 pex. I routed the traces into 2 inch styrofoam, I think, on 3 1/2 inch centers. The spec for 1/2 pex calls for 4 inch but, I cheated a little. The pex is laying in the aluminum plates and the 3/4 floor is directly on top of that. The flooring is something I found in one of the RV surplus stores, 3/4 inch with some sort of plastic coating on both sides. I earlier posted a picture of the piping. Here is after the floor was down. In process of laying the tubing. The manifolds, zone water pumps and relays. This is the Espar boiler, green box on left. The system is built basically like a automotive cooling system with a tank, gray box in center and a catch can. With overflow, that could have been much smaller. The marine water heater is behind the boiler. This compartment is above the engine in the rear. Since I had no idea how well, or if any of this would work. I also put a automotive type heater with blower in each zone. The driver compartment uses the original bus heater core as well as two smaller ones blowing on me. I am quite comfy down to about 10°. I haven't tested it any colder while driving. At below 0° sitting still, from a cold start I can get it nice and warm in about an hour at witch time I turn off all of the blowers and the floor will maintain. D ick
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