An Eccentric Anomaly: Page 1: Daily

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Daily trivia of even less consequence


On Sunday afternoon I went for a short walk up the hill behind (to the west of) a house plot I'm contemplating. Here are a few pictures - click to embiggen.


Solar Warm Air Panel: PV Driven Fan

There was a lot less breeze this morning but still very little heat being moved into the bathroom despite temperatures in the collector in the mid 30s °C and in the box outside the window in the mid 20s so I dug through my junk boxes for an old computer fan to hook on to one of my Maplin 15 W amorphous silicon PV panels. 


Solar Warm Air Panel: Window Box

The solar warm air collector is now at version 1.0. Previously: part 1, 1.5, 1.6 and initial results.

The weather has been pretty poor, though with a few nice days. Unfortunately, the nicest last week were Monday when I had a hospital appointment 40 miles away so all I managed on the solar warm air panel was to buy some more draft extruder strip and Thursday when I woke feeling very depressed and only got a little bit done - I slept most of the afternoon.

Consequently I got the box to feed the warm air into the bathroom window done midday Sunday, just as the sun was far enough round to the west not to be on the panel.



Saw this little critter in the front garden this morning:


Solar Warm Air Panel: Initial Results

Today (Sunday) started quite bright but by the time I'd sorted myself out it had clouded over.


Solar Warm Air Panel: Part 1.6

After yet more gloomy, wet and windy weather we seem to be getting a proper Billy Connolly June.

I had a bit of difficulty cutting the polycarbonate PVC sheet to length without it cracking but, with some good advice from the Navitron forum (with some nice ancillary discussion), I got a rotary tool by mail order which did the job pretty well. A couple of days ago I made up the central support for the polycarbonate PVC sheets with a piece across the bottom to which to tack the absorber.


Electrical Islanding Writ Large

The weather for the last week or two has not been good around here - windy, wet (sometimes very much so) and a bit chilly for the time of year. Somebody a little upwind with vastly more experience of the weather around here agrees. If I was superstitious I'd think it was because I started on that solar warm air panel which it's made a) difficult to get so enthusiastic about and b) difficult to hold in place and keep dry long enough to do anything useful. Also, I hoped for a bit of rain to test that ditch - be careful what you wish for.

My neighbours kindly offered me the use of their garage to finish the panel off but actually on Saturday I reorganised the stuff in the shed here to make some room and yesterday (Monday) I got the slots cut (rather messily) in the top and bottom and applied some stain but then the wind was driving the rain in through the door so I decided a better use for the evening would be to go to Thurso for some shopping. Given that it's an 80 mile round trip I don't do this often - usually it's just short of a month between visits.

Just as I finished in Tesco with the fruit and veg the power went out. They wouldn't let us continue shopping even though the emergency lights were just about adequate so I hung around as long as I could hoping the power would come back then checked out with what I had.


Solar Warm Air Panel: Part 1.5

A minor update on the solar warm air panel. The weather's not been great, windy with big showers, so I've just managed to slot in odd jobs like staining the wood, screwing it all together and fitting the backing insulation.


Solar Warm Air Panel: Part 1

About a fortnight ago I decided a little bit of practical making-things activity would be good for me.

The house I'm staying in has very thick stone walls so the temperature is pretty stable; particularly the downstairs stays around 12°C whatever. The LPG central heating warms the air quite nicely and the stone's all boarded over so the surface layers warm quickly giving reasonable thermal comfort but as soon as the heating is switched off the temperature drops back rapidly. Over the last few weeks it's been abnormally sunny and the upstairs, which is less well thermally connected to the stone, has been quite comfortable, around 20°C, most days with not more than a quick boost of electric heating first thing in the morning in the bedroom I use as an office.

The downstairs, with its high thermal mass and small windows, has not followed along. This is moderately unpleasant with the bathroom down there. Of course, the heating can deal with that but using it just feels wrong when there's bright sunlight falling on the outside of the building. What I've therefore decided to do is make a small solar warm-air collector to lean up against the bathroom window to bring in a trickle of heat in the hope of increasing the average temperature quicker than it naturally would.


Walk on Coldbackie Beach

It was pretty grey, drizzling and miserable for most of the morning and early afternoon but dried up later so, not having been out for a week or so and feeling a bit stale, I decided on a walk to try to find the start of a footpath on the hillside across the valley from home. It was not obvious so I carried on down to the beach which was not exactly crowded; there were some footprints.