Solar Rundown

So I have yet to really dabble in solar energy, but it is something that I do want to implement in my tiny home.  So today I am simply posting great resources for solar power.  One of the greatest untapped energy resources that exists is the sun, of course the hurtle that exists is how to take this energy and capture it efficiently and cost effectively.  I have a good feeling that the next 5 years will bring huge innovations in solar energy with Obama’s plan for cleaner energy.

First off here is some basic info about solar panels

Here is a cheap panel that can charge 90% of all your gadgets, phones etc.

The day in the life of a solar panel installer here

Mainstream of solar through Home Depot

Weekend projects you can do here

2 thoughts on “Solar Rundown

  1. Grant Wagner

    Solar energy is one of the really weird things for a do-it-yourselfer to really get his (her ) head around. On one level, any conversion of solar energy to electricity will ultimately simply be buying panels and wiring them to a battery and then on. There really isn't much experimentation or cost cutting measures to it, you simply gotta decide to do it and fork over the cash to do so. That said, otherpower.com put up a really great article a while back on small scale solar. http://www.otherpower.com/popup.html

    As a extension to that thought, Harbor Freight has a really nice solar "kit" for a really great price. 45 watts for $220. http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem… As far as I've seen recently, this one on of the more cost effective ways to get into solar, while still being small enough to not totally break the bank. It's a great start system, which can still get quite a bit of effective use out of.

    I really like your weekend projects link. The first few are just gadgets to buy, and aren't terribly interesting to me, and it quickly moves to "just do it, and pay a fortune", but there are some seriously good projects in the middle. I can honestly say that using an umbrella for an elptical cooker is a great idea, and these small projects have real uses and you can get the benefits immediately.

    Finally, don't over look the original solar energy system, burning wood. A good wood stove is very clean, and burning wood is aways "carbon neutral". Besides, a grove of trees is always much better looking than an array of panels and batteries. Technologies such as rocket stoves make this ancient technology even more attractive.

    Reply
  2. Grant Wagner

    I just lost what was to be a very nice comment, so I'm only going to be putting in a short version. I like your article, especially weekend projects link. Solar electricity is sort of interesting, because it's not do-it-yourself friendly, thus you simply have to decide to go for it, and shell out the cash.

    Otherpower has a nice introductory article for small scale solar. http://www.otherpower.com/popup.html
    Harbor Freight tools has the most cost effective kit for a small system that I know of, they also have lots of sales and coupons if you have one locally to you. http://www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/displayitem

    Don't discount the original solar system, burning wood. A well maintained stove is clean. Burning wood is always "carbon neutral". A forest grove looks better than panels and batteries. Possible Sustainable, if land is managed properly. Current "Rocket" stoves are super efficient, very cosy, and very do-it-yourselfer friendly.

    Sorry for the brevity.

    Reply

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