Monday, May 23, 2016

The future

Remaining to be done with my bus, there are a few things. Most of the work has been done so far. Briefly the following still need to be done (there are probably more things):

First, the door unlocker. Thinking about it, I'm probably better putting several wraps of coil wire around my brass tube. The ends could have copper attachments soldered on. I'd have to buy a gas torch but that's not expensive - I think  I saw one in Walmart for $14 the other day. I'm thinking about 8 coils layered over the tube. In order to reduce the chance of singing the coil, I'll probably use my two position key switch. The first position puts power through the coil from a capacitor, the second charges the capacitor. Thus, operating the magnet is a case of turning the key two clicks and waiting a few seconds while the capacitor charges. Rotating the key to the first click discharges the capacitor through the magnet, unlocking the door.

Second, the ventilation system. This will be two computer fans powered by two small solar panels mounted beside the vents. I have two fans on order. I'm waiting to see how good they are before I go further. I'm definitely not solar power's biggest fan. Thinking further, if the panels produce surplus power (yeah, it's a pipe dream), maybe that extra power could run a 3rd computer fan that operates my cooling system.

Third, the cooling system. This is my own design. It's not as good as a common household unit but on the other hand, a common household unit would need 120v at 10A. The plan is to put a drum underneath the bus, full of water. Pipes carrying air will pass through the water. A computer fan sucks air out of the tubes and blows it into the bus via insulated tubing. Underneath the barrel is the inlet vent for the air. The air gets sucked in, passes through the tubes, losing its heat to the water then gets blown into the bus. The water is allowed to evaporate via a ventilation tube. Water is put into the barrel via a filling tube.

Fourth, the fresh water barrel or barrels. These can be bought for about $45 each from Walmart. I have the mounts to install one, already. There's space on each side of the bus for one 15 gallon barrel. I honestly don't see myself using huge quantities of water.

Fifth, this is just a thought. I could put a small air conditioner together using Peltier elements. This is not something that could be run from these funky solar panel thingies. They're too woefully underpowered. That's something to run from shore power. The advantage is Peltier stuff is lightweight, compact and inexpensive. The downside is it needs a lot of electricity. That's no real worry when shore power is being used, however.

Sixth, I want to put an extraction fan over the kitchen area. This will pump the expelled air down and out of a vent in the side of the bus. This might be battery powered, purely because it won't be used solely in daylight and won't be used for more than 30 minutes at a time.

Seventh, I need to fix the messy under bus wiring. This includes rewiring the reversing horn. Now that, I'd like to operate via a manual switch on the console rather than via the funky automated system that the hillbillies installed.

Eighth, I would like to install a second reversing camera but fitted to work as a normal rear view camera. That actually tags onto something else. I need to remount the reversing camera screen. That's going to be tricky as when I mounted it, I inadvertently screwed it into a ventilation tube. Those holes will have to be plugged as a priority.

Nineth, I'm thinking about a general battery. I have no definite plans for that. I'm not impressed by solar panels. They cost a lot of money, produce minimal power during daylight only. For the moment I'm thinking of just charging phones etc from NiMh AA batteries. I really don't have much need for power to be honest. Refrigeration is handled by a cooler and a bag of ice.

Then there are some maintenance issues. I need to get the left rear indicator working again. I'd like to get the right hand windscreen wiper working. The hazard light switch, one of the wiper switches and the turn signal switch all need to be replaced. The alternator belt needs to be changed. The horn button needs to be fixed too. That has totally given up and the hillbilly button attached out of arms reach doesn't quite cut it!

Sent from my iPad

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