Thursday, August 27, 2015

Behold - the shower base!

Certainly it is a 24x46 concrete mixing tub from the farm supply store but it's new purpose is as my $18 shower base.

It's small enough that I could wedge it against the wall and have a ton of space. That might lead to mold however so that's not what's going to happen. It is going to go roughly where shown, held in place by a mount made from PVC planking.

After installing the bathroom floor, I had enough PVC plank left over to make two of the four edges from the plank. Sadly, I'll have to pony up for more but it'll be worth it! The corners will need special care but this is what the corner looks like without special attention. Eventually the corners will be squared to perfection.

Meanwhile, in the hunt for a 12v fridge, it transpired that the 12v heater/cooler fridges are built out of standard coolers with a single Peltier element. The Peltier element is very interesting as it transfers heat from one side to the other when power is out across it. The maximum cooling is 20C or 35F below ambient. That, however is a great playground for experimentation with water cooling systems etc.

Coolers are pretty cheap - I picked one up for $15 new a week or two back. Peltier elements are about $5 on eBay. CPU heatsinks and CPU fans are also pretty cheap. With a little care, a 12v fridge can be built for under $30.

Peltier coolers don't keep things very cold but they should be fine for prolonging the lives of fruit and bread. There was an article I read about one fellow who built an air conditioner using a Peltier element. Apparently it worked well enough. Again, given a water jacket cooler, lower temperatures might be achievable.

Given the horrible efficiency of solar panels I'm giving thought to building a vertical wind turbine. I'm nowhere near ready for it yet but I know exactly how to build it.

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