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Old 07-10-2010, 02:29 AM   #11
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I lived off the grid totally for 12 years, and I'm still off the grid when I go back there. A couple of solar panels, small wind generator, all hooked into a battery bank. Had plenty of electric for lights, TV, radio, computer. Used propane for cooking and light heating, wood for the main heat. Saved a lot of cash too. This whole thing is very easy to do. Get started small. 1 solar panel and 2 6v golf cart batteries hooked together to make 12v is all you need. Then you can build up from there. In fact, at my one house which was on the grid, I had some solar panels there. If the power ever went down, I still had lights and radio.

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Old 07-11-2010, 06:07 PM   #12
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I lived off the grid totally for 12 years, and I'm still off the grid when I go back there. A couple of solar panels, small wind generator, all hooked into a battery bank. Had plenty of electric for lights, TV, radio, computer. Used propane for cooking and light heating, wood for the main heat. Saved a lot of cash too. This whole thing is very easy to do. Get started small. 1 solar panel and 2 6v golf cart batteries hooked together to make 12v is all you need. Then you can build up from there. In fact, at my one house which was on the grid, I had some solar panels there. If the power ever went down, I still had lights and radio.
I'd like to be able to support myself with as little help from the 'world' as possible. Propane doesn't fit my requirements of living unassisted. You eventually will need to refill or purchase additional fuel. In a meltdown scenario, that likely will not be a good decision.

But, I can justify having radio for comm, and I've never been much of a TV guy. I'll likely have solar and maybe wind for some lighting, perhaps a solar water heater, radio, and a diesel generator for emergency use. And MAYBE a fridge if I can get the solar and wind to produce enough juice.
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Old 07-11-2010, 06:26 PM   #13
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How many solar panels will it take to run a 3-1/2 ton HVAC system?
I think I could get along without everything else, but I might need to bug out to the Yukon if I can't have my A/C!

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Old 07-11-2010, 06:35 PM   #14
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How many solar panels will it take to run a 3-1/2 ton HVAC system?
haha!

I figure if I build the roof of my domicile with solar panels that will help me run my disco ball for my underground roller rink......
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Old 07-16-2010, 01:30 AM   #15
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I'd like to be able to support myself with as little help from the 'world' as possible. Propane doesn't fit my requirements of living unassisted. You eventually will need to refill or purchase additional fuel. In a meltdown scenario, that likely will not be a good decision.

But, I can justify having radio for comm, and I've never been much of a TV guy. I'll likely have solar and maybe wind for some lighting, perhaps a solar water heater, radio, and a diesel generator for emergency use. And MAYBE a fridge if I can get the solar and wind to produce enough juice.
As regards the propane. In a meltdown scenario, no problem, I'll just go back to cooking with wood, but untill then propane is a hell of a lot easier. You said something about a diesel generator. In a general meltdown situation just where do you expect to get diesel? As for the fridge, forget it. Unless you have a massive power system, and I do mean massive, that ain't happening either. Takes too much juice. Propane is the only economical way for a fridge, but in a meltdown there won't be any. No, in a meltdown solar/wind would be good for lights, radio, anything that takes low amounts of juice to run. Wood for your heat and cooking. That's about it.
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Old 07-16-2010, 01:45 AM   #16
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As regards the propane. In a meltdown scenario, no problem, I'll just go back to cooking with wood, but untill then propane is a hell of a lot easier. You said something about a diesel generator. In a general meltdown situation just where do you expect to get diesel? As for the fridge, forget it. Unless you have a massive power system, and I do mean massive, that ain't happening either. Takes too much juice. Propane is the only economical way for a fridge, but in a meltdown there won't be any. No, in a meltdown solar/wind would be good for lights, radio, anything that takes low amounts of juice to run. Wood for your heat and cooking. That's about it.

The diesel generator would be run only in extreme situations where I would need an added boost of energy. I would keep a few drums of diesel in storage. However, you are correct. In a meltdown it will be useful only as long as the fuel holds out.

As for the fridge, I haven't looked into how much power is required to run a fridge. It would be nice to have for things that are quickly perishable...fresh fish and meat, leftovers from meals, etc. I would not go buy the world's most mammoth fridge with all the bells and whistles, but probably something more akin to what you'd find in college dorms or hotels.
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Old 07-16-2010, 03:29 PM   #17
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Default Off the Grid

Down here after Katrina every thing was shut down except natural gas. I was lucky that the small generator I have runs on natural gas. It was used to keep the fridge and freezer running. I used water from my neighbors pool to flush the toilet, and bottled water to some what stay clean. At night I had a small fan to try and stay cool. When the temps in the upper 90's and the humidity is 100% it's miserable as Hell. Funny thing about AC. If you never had it you don't miss it. Growing up we raised our own meat and vegatables. Yea it was hard work, but I'd go back to that in a heart beat if I could. Good luck and God Bless!

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Old 07-16-2010, 04:30 PM   #18
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Default Polly tunnel

A poly tunnel may be a good idea to assist with year round veg.

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Old 07-16-2010, 04:36 PM   #19
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The diesel generator would be run only in extreme situations where I would need an added boost of energy. I would keep a few drums of diesel in storage. However, you are correct. In a meltdown it will be useful only as long as the fuel holds out.

As for the fridge, I haven't looked into how much power is required to run a fridge. It would be nice to have for things that are quickly perishable...fresh fish and meat, leftovers from meals, etc. I would not go buy the world's most mammoth fridge with all the bells and whistles, but probably something more akin to what you'd find in college dorms or hotels.
From my experience propane is the best for a fridge. The little one's that are in RV's work just fine. As for refrigeration in a melt down situation, you just need to do what they did way back when. A root cellar built into the side of a small hill. You cut your ice in the winter and put it in the root cellar, cover it with sawdust and you should have a natural fridge for quite some time, way into the summer I think.
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Old 07-17-2010, 07:16 PM   #20
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Default Turning back the clock..............

Ones definition of off the grid. When you start talking of solar power, generators, and any other luxury items in my mind is not going back to the basics. a good example is knowing what to do with all that meat you kill, and the fish you catch. Canning fruits and vegatables. How to make your own soap, charcoal, gun powder. The list is endless. After watching the guy up in Alaska, he himself said he couldn't do it alone. My wife is one that can make it in the wilderness. I'll kill what ever and she'll skin it and cook it. She was brought up old school. I need advice on how to make a smoker on a tight budget. Keep your head down and your powder dry!!!!!

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