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Starter PV and innovative lighting Options
#1 Posted : Saturday, May 02, 2009 2:43:57 AM
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Posts: 134,494

 We got down to the "ranch" a couple weeks ago, even camped near the property. The weather however was pretty crappy...snow and wind. We scoped out a spot for the cabin on the 42 acre spread. Our plan to put the cabin in the arroyo was nixed...its a creek in the spring...we found a real great spot that over looks it.

I have been doing tons of research on PV systems and have started to aquire parts for putting ours together even though I have not yet pounded in one nail on the project...

I started to modify some cool 50 watt Halogen lights with LED's and have put together a Tutorial on it...

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=290311860201&ssPageName=ADME:L:LCA :US:1123

With these modifications we can light the whole cabin for less than 40 watts. This new lighting method will allow us to simplify the starter PV system...I already have (2) 10 watt panels, a charge controller and a small inverter...the next step is to get a battery and another 40 watt panel. I will hook all this up in a test rig here in Colorado and play with it a bit before we set it up at the ranch.

Since the building wont start for a while, I needed something to feel like its coming together.

I was thinking about using a sealed AGM or Gel Battery to start since we will not be there often, the next few years....and I would hate to have them dry up between visits...Our first upgrade would be to add another battery and panel.

The only thing holding us back now is the whole time and Money thing...but I'm sure everybody is familair with that.


#2 Posted : Saturday, May 02, 2009 2:43:57 AM
Rank: Guest

Posts: 134,494

I bought my LED lights at wallyMart. They have 1, 7, and 10 watt LED lights now. However... keep in mind that the common LED lights are NOT more effecient than florecent. They are realy good at casting light a far distance, but put out less lumens per watt.

Also keep in mind that the cheep 1 watt LED light bulbs that are used in 120V Halogen fixtures do not like square or "modifyed sine wave" inverters. They work with "true sine wave" inverters.

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