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I am very interested and would like to get on your mailing list

I am an avid Dropbox user among other software


We are looking to do a bit of solar in our new home in Argao Cebu

Probably not much, perhaps only passive solar heating at this point

We are also looking to reuse rain water - do you have anything that would help design a simple outdoor pool?


Please keep me posted> xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx



Edited by Paul
removed email address, for your protection.
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  • 2 months later...

Paul, could you send me what you have as I have decided to follow in your footsteps in regards to solar...thanks

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For many years I have been involved on the fringes of off grid power supplies and would like to suggest another header to this interesting topic called "Power requirements short and long term calculator" and follow this with another "Real power outcomes"

Power requirements short and long term could be in the form of a spread sheet that can also include an overlay of time and power available at that time also taking into account the start up load of induction motors etc.

The reason for suggesting this is that we see so many people disappointed because they had unrealistic expectations and if they had worked through the requirements initially as suggested it would have been educational and ended with more positive outcomes.  (A lot of alternative power ideas/ equipment is grossly over stated /sold unfortunately)

System integration with the grid and the much lower cost of panels is making solar viable in many situations, however stand alone solar systems as an alternative to the grid are still not an economical proposition for a variety of reasons the main ones being initial and ongoing cost. 


May I suggest the following two situation alternatives:


A) Operate off the grid but need power during outages... Have a deep cycle battery on constant charge from grid. Power essential items via a grid integrated pure sine wave inverter. When the grid drops out the essential items continue to be powered up. (Add batteries or a gas motor powered DC alternator if additional / long term is power required) 


B) Operate totally off grid:  Start with a decent deep cycle battery bank (Say 4 x 55amp Optimas coupled series- paralell for 24VDC) and couple these to a 24V pure sine wave inverter sized to cope with all equipment required and with a surge capacity to handle start up loads. Couple the batteries to a self start diesel powered 24VDC alternator. (A truck alternator can be driven by a very small diesel engine and can put out over 2000 watts) Next use a series of voltage regulators staged so that one shuts off the diesel when the battery(s) read charged, another starts the diesel when the batteries lower to a pre-set value and another so that when the diesel is running causes it to increase/ decrease revs matched to the load drawn. 

Sounds complicated but these are some the benefits.... 

*Other fixed generation systems need to be grossly over-sized to accommodate start up surge whereas my DC system has surge taken care of via the battery(s) capacitance. This DC generator only has to have a capacity a little above the average hourly consumption, not the the peak load surge like with an AC gen set!

*Supply can be as high as the inverter allows and not limited to the generator's rated output.

*This system is generating power at only the rate required, varying in speed to meet the load, there is comparatively little if any wasted power generated. 

*Can have solar panels added to rest the engine when the solar is adequate.

*Shuts off the diesel when the load is light with at least 1200 watts being available before it needs to start again. (That's 2 x 50 watt light bulbs on for 12 hours)

*By generating 24VDC matched to the battery(s) need and supplied direct, there is no loss in converting and less losses in transmission.


Just an idea........Cheers.

Good idea, Mate,


I have done both A & B, only difference is I use 110 volts and a steam plant and wind generator as my back up!  :cheers:

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For the record, I am about to make some changes to the forums on this site, moving / adding / changing them around a bit, to be in a category similar to the category I have on the Cambodia site: Green Living In Cambodia
Yes, I was going to suggest a separate forum for such things.
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Paul, could you send me what you have as I have decided to follow in your footsteps in regards to solar...thanks


Sent you an invite, Toby, to access the files. 

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Hi Paul, Yes I would certainly like to see what you have discovered over the years.  :wheel:

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Sent you an invite through DropBox. It was sent to the email address attached to your forums account. I hope that was okay.

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