Saturday, August 1, 2020

Solar 2020 Part 3: Home Concrete Footings

Like most of my projects, the theory of "Oh, I'll just punch some holes in the ground!" for my home solar array met with an awful lot of "Well, that didn't go as planned."


But, punch I did, and I've got plenty of holes in the ground, filled with concrete, ready for the uprights!



Saturday, July 18, 2020

Solar 2020 Part 2: Office A-Frames, Local Wildlife, and Comets

A little while back, I left things on my office install with the footings poured and the side rails mounted.  This week, it's time to build and mount the As that go on top!


ARM posts are delayed by a bit, mostly because I was up super late last night trying to get pictures of a comet (and succeeding, mostly).

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Happy 4th of July in a Dying Empire!

Happy 4th of July!  Freedom!  Fireworks!  America!

Or, at least, that's what it used to be.  This year? Fireworks, if you're lucky.  Parades seem unwise.  People?  Best avoided.  America? Well... we're having a rough year.


What better way to celebrate the birth of a country than to discuss it's death?

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Apple and the ARM Transition

I didn't have any particular posts planned for this week, but as is often the case, the news offered a useful topic: Apple's upcoming ARM transition.


For years now, people have been discussing the possibility of Apple moving to ARM processors for their desktops and laptops.  Their mobile devices have been ARM from the beginning, and with Apple's modern phone processors giving Intel's x86 offerings a solid competitor, it's been an obvious question - but just an interesting one, until recently the rumors solidified and it sounds like this is a thing that's going to happen.

I know my way around some deep processor weeds, so this has been interesting to me.  There's a ton of uninformed garbage on the internet, as usual, so I'll offer my attempt to clarify things!

And as of Monday, I'll probably be proven mostly wrong...

Saturday, June 6, 2020

Solar 2020 Part 1: Office Concrete Footings & Side Rails

Well, a year or so late, I'm starting a set of posts on the new solar installs for the property, probably interleaved with posts about other things as well.

The first couple posts are about a big "A-frame" install over by my office.  I'm not totally happy with the south facing panels out there, and I'm taking the opportunity to both rearrange panels to better suit my needs, and to work out details for the home install - which is far larger!  It's better to work out problems in a smaller scale before going big - and I've certainly decided to do some things differently as I scale up!

So, this week, I'm talking about the base for my new office solar - the footings and the frame!


This involves, as do most of my projects, an old tractor, some sketchy machinery, wood, paint, and more!

Saturday, May 23, 2020

On Working From Home and the Joys of Shed Offices

As we settle into what looks like a new normal for the indefinite future, I decided to share some thoughts and reflections on various "WFH" setups I've had over the years.  My working career has involved quite a bit of work from home - and I've learned some hard lessons over the years.  I've also learned what works well, and have built what is, quite possibly, the ultimate home office - my Solar Shed!  The only thing better than working from home is working from the property!


Stuck dealing with the fallout?  Hoping to transition to WFH or just improve your WFH setup?  Keep reading!

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Upgrading a Power Wheels with an Electric Speed Controller

I've... got a problem with electric trucks.  My kid's PowerWheels F150 is now far more expensive than most of the vehicles I've owned in my life, if you consider the various upgrades it has.

It's also a halfway competent little electric property truck, with a real throttle and brake pedal, and she's learning to drive something that drives like a real car now.


This most recent upgrade is the East Coast PowerUp DIY ESC Kit - which is basically a total conversion kit for the chassis and motors.  The only electronics retained are the motors, and the whole setup becomes far, far nicer in the deal.  Not that it really impacts how my daughter drives - pedal to the metal, though we're working on it!

What's in the kit?  How does it go together?  Why would one do such an insane thing?  Keep reading to find out!