Monday, June 8, 2009

Danger, Will Robinson!

Benita's photo of the day - deciding to try the shade of my shower this morning. Not to worry folks....the propane tank was going inside but now it will be outside. Not because of the inherent danger of placing it inside because I don't think it is a problem for an intermittent use system. I have run my heater for two winters with the 20 pounder sittin right under the unit. Have I been lucky so far?....no, just smart about my connections. So anyway...the cook top is moving outside to the porch because I noticed when I heated my coffee water this morning even on the low setting, the inside temp went up 2 degrees - which this time of year is not good. So now the porch will be the summer kitchen but I will haul it inside ( tank and all for the winter months ).

Spent most of the day inside tweaking the swamp cooler flow. Broke the 80 degree mark today with a high of only 79.5 inside! Managed the flow rate by mechanical means for now until I find just the right 12volt timer switch for the pump. Also built a temporary vent for my exit air window. Decided that letting that air blow out at belly level would only keep my knees cool so I rigged a box from one of my solar panels to channel the hotter air from the ceiling down and out the belly level open window. Hit a high in the sun of 118+ today. The white thermometer shows the inside temp on top and the temp inside the swamp cooler in the middle and the inside humidity on the bottom. The lower unit is my weather station. The center of the unit shows the outdoor temp at 111.9 at 7% humidity and the indoor temp of 78.3 with 42% humidity at 3:15PM this afternoon. Nothing like seeing the numbers to know what's working...

9 comments:

Dwight Parker said...

It was by sheer luck that I saw the rerun Sunday morning about you on TV, so I have started reading your blogs from the beginning backwards to fill in on your story... I'm a bit older than you, but admire and am envious of your adventure... will comment more and stop by to say hello as I get to know you better...and a belated welcome to Texas, from an Austin native...

Mr_Brown said...

Hey John, I don't know if it's the Cowboy way to do things but with your new burner you might be able to get yourself a French Press set up. It' makes a pretty good cup of coffee. But then again the coffee can be pretty hot and that might be too dangerous :)

MsBelinda said...

118 plus in the sun is pretty darn hot. A couple of years ago the Houston stations always would mention Lajitas as the hottest spot in the nightly summer weather segment.

Now it is Laredo even though everyone knows it is hotter in the Big Bend area.

Glad your pepino cooler is keeping you cool and that you are paying attention to your body and staying indoors during the hottest part of the day.

Nice daily picture of your roomie!!

rj said...

Propane tanks have an automatic relief valve that releases gas when the tank is overheated. As a result, it is not advisable to leave one in an enclosed building, even if the valve is turned off. Winter use minimizes the danger of overheating.

BigBuc said...

How hot does the solar oven get? I'm thinking if it can bake bread it could create steam, and steam could turn a turbine, and have that turn a generator for electricity... just thinking...

Nat said...

BigBuc: regarding steam electric solar, see this YouTube video and the comments for a discussion of the ins and outs. I like the idea. If anyone could do it himself, I'd bet John could.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=rRYfsAExkUw

Nat

matthew said...

I would recommend you try and let the hot air exit up high rather than trying to force it low. Physics dictates that hot air rises. Use that force to your advantage. Ideally your swamp cooler would enter low.

Matt & Maria Salenger (http://colabstudio.com/) use natural convection as I have described to keep their pods cooled naturally. Pics at my site: http://www.modernphoenix.net/cedar1.htm

Great house. Great project. Nice blog. Thanks for sharing this with the rest of us. Best wishes!

Dwight Parker said...

I agree with Matthew, sounds like you don't have a vent any higher than belly level...I believe it would be worthwhile to engineer one in the ceiling/roof somehow...

kelli king said...

And here I thought this might be a post about the
deliriously cheesy LOST IN SPACE tv series...