Sunday, January 17, 2016

The Final Solution or when the going gets tough, the tough go shopping!

Today was a mission day for m'lady but since I was out (even though I had to go on a second trip). I had ideas about attaching the would be water tanks under the bus body and plumbing them in but decided against chains as they would put too much stress on small areas of a thin-walled plastic drum. I looked at nylon straps but didn't get them immediately which as it turned out was rather a good thing. Looking at plumbing fittings, I couldn't find anything in Lowes (hiss, spit) that remotely fitted. There were adaptors that were alleged to fit but which didn't really. They were an incredibly sloppy fit which was no good whatsoever. I did manage to get an section that will join my long pipe after I cut it and which will serve to lengthen it. Cutting accurately will be somewhat irksome, of course.

My next stop was Walmart where I spent the majority of my time. There I picked up a roller blind that looked interesting. I'll have to see if I can cut it down with my angle grinder. It only needs to be 26 inches wide. It's currently 37 inches which is too narrow for two windows and too wide for a single window. I'll also shorten it since it'll be way too long. If the experiment is a success then I can work on putting two together for the other windows. That could be an interesting experiment.

While in Walmart I picked up a bowl and a jug which should be excellent for the bathroom/kitchen. Waste water can simply be dumped into a bucket underneath the bathroom vanity. In a similar vein, since I cannot currently find an adaptor to feed the waste water tanks from my waste pipe that actually fits anything, for the moment the plumbing will revert to my original idea which was to have the pipe going down to the bottom of the bus skirt with a stopper that can be removed prior to use.

Thinking about the electrical system, I noticed something very interesting. It was a rechargeable USB cellphone charger. Connected via a charge controller to a solar panel that could totally eliminate any need for a house battery for the bus. That makes me think more about redoing the battery compartment I've been building to make it smaller and lighter. As it is, it won't accommodate a full-sized battery thus it's way over built. Instead, I could do something a lot lighter and less complicated, replace the huge door the hillbillies put in with a smaller door and simply rivet aluminum sheet over the rest of the aperture. Basically, make it into purely a breaker box compartment. I might also include in that bay, a space to charge USB batteries. I don't want anything that flammible inside the bus despite having now got a gas cooker. At least a gas cooker I can attend while it's working but a solar charged battery I cannot.

Another thing I did was to get some truly independent kitchenware. There was a gas cooker with auto ignition for $18 that contained a small gas cylinder. That was well worthwhile. It was a single burner but it'll do to demonstrate independent cooking ability.

The refrigeration will be non existent other than a cooler. I grew up without a fridge, freezer, car, telephone or television. I'm well used to what many would be considered privation. There will be no television, of course. I do have a small pocket radio, my tablet and my phone (which can act as a wifi hotspot). I'm thinking a lot can be achieved with small solar panels.

Today or rather last night, it rained heavily. Walking inside the bus today I noticed or rather didn't notice any moisture. That means that my seam sealing was a success. I just hope the rest of my work will be as successful.

I had a look to see if I could find a 12v fan. That could be combined with a solar panel to keep the body cool during summer, extracting the hot air and blowing it out under the bus.

Returning to the underbody compartment, I've considered a smaller, lighter compartment many times before. Certainly a smaller, lighter compartment would be that much easier to attach with that much less risk attached if it fell off. Definitely food for thought. By using the compartment as it is does rather trap me into the hillbillies bad ideas. 

One thought is how to charge camera batteries. I've had the same camera for ten years so all the chargers etc are off the market by now. As it has a unique lithium battery, it's hard to find the correct charger. I'm wondering whether it would even be possible to find a charger that would work off solar these days. Phone batteries would be easy to charge off solar. Interesting thing to think about. Of course, I could consider donating my old camera and buying a newer (secondhand) model.

The plan for tomorrow is to complete the plumbing and to look severely at the hillbilly cable compartment. I had a nasty thought that the compartment I've built might be too long to fit the space. I'm coming more to the conclusion that less is more.

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