Sunday, December 13, 2015

Invaders from Mars arrived today.

Or perhaps that's what m'lady and her dogs thought when they ran, screaming, for the hills when they saw me in my welding outfit.

Today my welding was much better. Indeed it looked a lot closer to what a professional would do.

On the whole, I was happier with today's welding. Unlike last week I sprayed my welds with rust killing paint because welds are more prone to rust. I'm not sure how much more welding I should do but as I'd become tired, it was time for a break. After that the sun went and hid itself below the horizon. Talk about inconvenient!

I don't know what that website I was reading yesterday was on about but I find welding easiest at about a 45° angle. I suspect like everything else, most of these websites are set up by self taught welders each of whom uses a different technique that they swear is the one and only correct way of welding.

During today's welding I was getting on so well that I exceeded the welder's duty cycle and it shut down to cool off. I was getting some lovely thick welds. It seems a welding rod is good for about 4 - 5 inches. I even managed to build up to fill a 1/8 inch thick gap where I oopsied in my construction. On the whole, this is pretty confidence building.

I'm reasonably confident that today's welding will hold up to the test of use. My next task will be to remove the old hillbilly cable compartment and door then to install my own. Before I do that, I'll probably cut sides and a base for it that can be attached when its in situ. Those will probably be riveted into place.

Meanwhile, I put more silicone caulk on one of the roof seams while standing on a stepladder. I suspect I might need to add more. There's definitely a minuscule leak there.

While I welded, I connected my Peltier setup to my solar panel. Every now and then I'd go back to it and feel to see whether one side was warm and the other, cold. By the end of the day I'd not noticed any difference. This does not surprise me in the slightest. My luck with electronics is never high. Things that should work or are reported to work rarely do. In fact, it used to be 50/50 whether purchased ready made electronics would actually function. These days the percentage of DOA electronics is lower but they still exist. Electronics always seems such an absurdly hit and miss area.

I was reminded of a website I saw before I tried my Peltier setup. The Useless World of tge Peltier Effect Dehumidifier in which was documented one fellow's miserable experience of Peltier equipment. Drawing only 60 W and claiming only 600 ml collection per day (conventional claimed 300 W and 5 litres per day) the numbers seemed reasonable.

Sad to say, the reality has not been anywhere close.

In fact, having run the new dehum under various ambient temperatures and humidity levels, it barely manages to fill its little 600 ml tank in a week, let alone a day.

I really wasn't expecting anything spectacular from the Peltier unit but was hoping for more than *nothing*. Still, I can experiment. It could be that my 5W solar panel wasn't producing enough to tickle a 60W element - which is the most likely reason.

So, over the next week or two I intend to finish installing my cable compartment. Having done that, I'll be in a position to file to have my bus reregistered as a motorhome.

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