Friday, January 20, 2012

The joys of solar!!

I just love my solar power system!! My panels are bolted to the roof of my trailer, but have tilting capability which you need in the winter to get the full effect of the low hanging sun---point the panels south, and you're set to harness the power! I don't use a lot of power in my trailer at night, but I do charge my cell and my laptop and my razor.....I plug in a nice little 60 watt table lamp to read by at times.....

Yesterday, I met this girl who is tent camping on BLM land, and she told me she had no room for bulky panels...bulky batteries...bulky inverter...yet last night she had her tent lit up like daylight!! How is that possible? She told me she had no battery powered battery powered LED fixtures...and definitely no big and bulky solar power system!! Yet she had lots of light!! Candles?? No...light was to bright!! So, what was putting out all that light?????

It was 4 of these!!

How clever!! She had 4 of these guys, each placed into an empty 1 liter plastic bottle with sand in it for weight stability, and they were giving her all the light she needed!! In the morning, she puts them back outside her tent to recharge in the sun.

Pretty smart kid!!


  1. Wow, that is wicked cool!! I love that idea... Think I will see if maybe I can adapt it to indoor apartment living, think that is possible seeing I am stuck here in Maine right now?... we'll try it.. wahoooo!!! Thanks for sharing. Love to read your blog and gain new insights...

  2. What a great idea! I'm sure I could use those too somewhere. Gonna figure out where :)

  3. WOW. Wish I'd thought of that. I love energy experiments and can see using that idea at the house. Thanks for sharing.

    brenda from ar

  4. Brilliant! I love ingenuity and am definitely going to use this! I had to leave the park early today because it was getting dark. Never again! Well, as soon as I buy these little gems. Thanks John and anon brite tent girl! :)

  5. Great idea! I can tell a visit to Home Depot is in my future!

  6. You use a wind generator too, correct? I wonder if you've considered a vertical blade arrangement, instead of the airplane propeller dealie?

    I've considered making a small one that will charge while I drive and a larger one for when I'm parked, to catch the breeze.

    They say the vertical ones are quieter, require less wind to start and don't need to point anyplace in particular. I'm all about less moving parts.

  7. Paul,
    Yes, you're talking about VERTICAL AXIS WIND TURBINES...I actually made one of those using a blue plastic 35 gallon oil drum cut in half then mounted atop each other using lazy susans for a worked pretty good in very low wind, but high winds literally blew them apart! They aren't making them commercially much yet, but I think they will catch on! Good luck with it, keep me posted, and if you get it going send me pics!!