Sunday, December 4, 2016

Installation of Solar Power on My Lakota LQ!

That installation is making good progress... even if I do sit at the desk working on the book until way late in the morning__to give the sun plenty of time to chase off the cold from the desert night! 😆

Since I've no compartments up front to let me mount the Contoller and breaker panel in I had to track down a usable enclosure - and modify that with ventilation.

Since the enclosure is needed to keep the weather off the electronics, I'm hoping my ventilation fabrication doesn't fail me. ;)

I simply drilled grids of holes and then capped those with electrical boxes drilled in a similar fashion.

That I mounted under the goose...then managed to hoist the 270 watt Kyocera panel up onto the roof and got it secured to the roof bows.

Finished that off with a heavy application of Dicor self leveling sealant over the mounting brackets. That stuff will prohibit any leaks and serve as a secondary mechanical hold as well.

All the pieces are now mounted in place... well all except the remote monitor...

All that's left now is to get it all wired up and my Horse Camp solar power system will be up and running!

Future plans are to double my battery capacity and figure out somewhere to hook in a decent sized inverter.

Would be nice to be able to fire up the coffee maker without having to run the generator...

I figure to need at least a 1500 watt unit to do that chore.

But it's all good. Steady progress comin' along on all fronts... If I can just get that elusive "Rider" locked down I'll be a happy buster.


Thursday, December 1, 2016

Let's See... Where Was I?

 Oh yeah... I was preparing to leave Missouri...

It's now been something like two weeks... and I'm 1200 miles or so away from where I was... In fact, I'm back at my winter camp quarters in Cochise county.

I left Missouri bound west for Colorado... stopped in a place called Kiowa for a few minutes along the way to put those side compartments I built up to use...

Yeah... you're right... that's not motorcycle fuel...

Been flip floppin' four times a day for weeks... the last lil' bit in Missouri something clicked and the decision got made.

I took Cora back. CJ had got sold much earlier, and for whatever reason she didn't...

Bottom line... I started back to find that trail again and on that trail I will finish.

So, from Kiowa I kept moving west and started climbing back into my beloved mountains... to bust the truck straight away climbing out of Denver... sort of.

I waxed another fuel filter on the climb... Barely made it over the passes... but still managed to limp into Grand Junction once I got down off the passes. A fresh fuel filter the next morning and I was good again and ready to pick up...


*Cora came home with me to Cochise*
 I loaded her in the Lakota just west of Grand Junction on a Tuesday morning and lit out for Flagstaff Arizona... where I had additional plans.

We stopped in Flagstaff for a couple nights on the way down to pick up most of the hardware to do a Solar Power install... I'm weary of the grinding of a generator and the hassles of dealing with the buggers...

Then, Thanksgiving day we rolled the six hours from Flag to my winter camp below Turkey Creek down here in Cochise County.

... and set to work!

I wasn't even sure if the thieving nature of a lot of the human race would have left me anything at all since I pulled out last March... but luck was with me. The round pen I needed was still standing and even its Gate remained hangin' on the posts!

I've been scrambling too many miles just about since we got here. Lined up a good bigger cistern and had to go get it. Was planning on a trailer to haul it with but cogitation set me a different way. Assuming I take off on a summer circle, a water trailer is one more piece of something I've got to deal with to prevent it from growing legs...

The cost of delivery of the lil' bit of water we use actually makes better sense than all the expense and hassle of another trailer... so... that's done and I've water for nearly a month sitting in the tank outside.

Then as I was stumbling around doin' all that... I crossed paths with some furniture... to do a remodel that's been percolating in my head for some little while...

*The Couch - Before*

I decided that "writing shed" in the back is just too much awkward and inconvenience... soooooo... on the weekend after Thanksgiving I did a whiz bang change up of the interior of my Lakota LQ Horse trailer.

*Cowboy Writing Desk and Chair - After*
If thy couch offends thee... Pluck it OUT!

... and replace it with a slick used writing desk and a sweet new chair that is WAY more comfortable than the old hide-a-bed couch!

and when I'm not sitting in the chair reading at night... it spins around to sit at the desk working...

Plus... Arlo's bed swaps with the chair...

*Arlo seems to prefer his bed under the desk*

With this setup, I can get up in the oh damn it's early 3 in the a.m. when sleep refuses to co-operate and sit at the desk with a hot chocolate and work...

... while it was just too cold last winter with the desk out back in the horse compartment...

So with that all done, this week I'm working on the inventing I have to do to wiggle a 270 watt Kyocera solar panel setup into the rig.

I'm having to fabricate a protective box for the controller and small breaker panel up under the gooseneck... since there's no compartments on this rig like a "normal" person's rig.

Cora... well... she was at a trainer in July but she's not been rode since mid September... too long for a green colt and a buster whose confidence s bruised. That busted shoulder of mine still has a ways to go to be 'good'...

So, I'm searching around for a good rider here to put a half dozen maybe ten rides on her to get her warmed up and moving again for me. Then I can swing a leg with much stronger confidence that I won't be a non bouncing projectile.

... soooo... I think that's about all that's been happening... juggling so many irons I'm not truly sure at any partic'lar moment where I'm at or what I'm doin...

Still have to rework that heater duct that ran under the couch... complete the install of the solar... and get that rider locked down ASAP to get Miss Cora under saddle strong. (eating a little pride there will go a long ways these days...)

I'll try to keep things a little more up to date... but between the hustlin' and Microsoft/Verizon stuffing my data plan with never ending HUGE updates every time I turn on the Hotspot... They have me spooked a lil' bit... ate 4 gig in fifteen minutes last week while I was just checking my accounts and email! arrrrrrggggghhhhh!

a 16 gig plan evaporates pretty dang fast at that rate! Crooked as politicians!

*The super moon just before I left Missouri*

Time now for me to move the chair to the sittin' an' thinkn' spot and kick back for a bit before I turn in...

Till next time

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Close To Getting Back On The Road... I'm Going Home.

A fresh set of tires went on before I started the heater core. HanKook at discount tire as always. 60,000 plus on the tires and the best customer service available at discount. And that's proven out all over the country... They've even spread up into Montana and the Northwest the last couple years so I'm covered now Where ever I wander.

I finished replacing the bad heater core the other day... no thanks to Chrysler. That has got to be the poorest design and placement for a heater core I've ever had to deal with. Had to cut it into pieces to get it out... and modify the replacement - to get it in!

Cut off most of the hard tubes and ran longer hoses inside the firewall. After three hours and a bit of pushing, shoving, torquing and cursing I'd decided the B@$&@*D was not gonna go in... so I cowboyed the sucker, triple clamped the hoses and put that job to bed.

So far... no apparent leaks... I was some afeared that We'd torqued on those swivel tubes too much trying to fight it into place... buuuut so far it seems healthy.

The Truck is now at the welder to rebuild the failing "factory" hitch on the bed... gonna take a mite longer than he'd planned (life gets in his way too!) but I should have it back  by Tuesday.

There's a couple of last jobs to do on the truck before I head west... and then I'm bound for what I'm looking at for the next part of this Journey.

Things are happening, choices made__which I will share as they come to pass...

As it stands now I'm looking to maybe hit the road late in the week... all depends on the welder and how the last lil' chores I need to do on the truck shake out.

A few scenes from the past several weeks;

*The last sunset over my Missouri river camp in September*

*The Moon that night over the Missouri River*

*Missouri River Moonrise*

*The view out my door at my Harvest camp in Sidney*

*Harvest Camp*

*Missouri Sunrise*

*Misty Missouri Sunrise from my door*

*The Coop finally got it's Gable siding last week*
I'll be rolling west on the interstate. As much as prefer rolling slow on the two lane, after the ordeal of struggling through the twisting and narrowing two lanes of east Kansas and west Missouri just getting here... I'm gonna take the super slab to get outa here and get where I'm going! ... Home...

Ready to start making another circle...

- Brian