Archive for December, 2012

Update on costs

Friday, December 28th, 2012

Evans & Clarke auctions for a drop in bath, RRP $699 – $126.23
Evans & Clarke auctions for R3.5 insulation, 300 sqm total, RRP $1890 – $929.48
eBay and various sellers for MC4 connectors, solar cable and MC4 connector crimping kit – $311.25
Bianco for odds and sods – $86.35
Footersville, deposit on roof trusses – $962.64

Total project spend is now at $308,501.73
House only is now $94,549.23
Cost per square metre is now $328.30

Coleman Air

Friday, December 28th, 2012

Occasionally you just need to tell people when you are happy with how a company makes products and conducts business. I would like to take a moment to tell those of you considering an off grid setup about Coleman Air

I ordered a substantial amount of equipment from them (enough for the house plus a separate setup for the aquaponics shed) and it was here within a week of them sending it out to me via DHL. It was extremely well packed with the volume of each box roughly twice the contents, the contents neatly and securely wrapped in bubble wrap and then completely immersed in a protective cocoon of shredded paper. The boxes took an obvious beating during the trip and the contents were completely unharmed.

I was also keen to have a look at the quality of the gear, as they do assemble the equipment themselves. All the work is very neat and tidy and gives the impression it was crafted rather than just slapped together.

If you’re going to go off grid I encourage you to take a look at what they have to offer, especially the charge controllers. Just remember, they are US based and you will be liable for import duties and taxes if you exceed $1000 as a private importer. Our duties and taxes were roughly 15% of the invoiced amount.

Seasonal pleasantries

Sunday, December 23rd, 2012

And again it is the time of year where I say with/without the religious beliefs you do/do not follow, happy and safe silly season to you all.

The roof will not be on before the end of the year as the trusses are not able to be delivered before January 14 next year. The roof iron has been slated for delivery the week after that.

I have the electrical control gear and the panels for the house safely stored and waiting to be rigged up. Timber for the windows and doors is being shaped and will soon be ready for glass.

Lots is happening, just doesn’t look like anything is getting done…. still it is that season.

The aquaponics trial system

Saturday, December 1st, 2012

I may have been banned from building it until the house is done, but that doesn’t stop me from thinking about it or collecting bits and pieces as they come along.

While doing the negotiating on the solar panels and electrical control gear for the house I purchased the panels and electrical control gear for the aquaponics set up as well. The shed will run an identical control set up except it will be 12 volt based rather than the 24 volt of the house system. 2kw in panels, control gear and an 1100Ah 12 volt battery bank has cost us under $5700. We will eventually plug in a couple of wind turbines to this system as well giving us ample power to expand the operation as we need to.

Most of the components of this shed will be running 12 volt.