Author Archives: tornpocket

Ground Solar, Part III, The Charger

In Part I of this series, we provided an overview of the solar power system we deployed on the ground to keep our freezer and refrigerators running after Hurricane Matthew. In Part II, we discussed the combiner, an essential element that is often overlooked. Along the way, we discussed the principles of solar panels as […]

Ground Solar, Part II, The Combiner

In the previous ground solar post, we described deploying a solar power system after Hurricane Matthew to keep our freezers and refrigerators running. In the post on solar panel principles, we discussed important issues to consider when selecting solar panels. Once you’ve selected a solar panel model to create your solar power array, it is […]

Field Phone Morse Decoder

A field phone allows voice communication between your house and your barn or whatever. You can also use the key switches on the ring interface modules to send Morse back and forth. Why not add a Raspberry Pi to decode Morse code messages, and then control something with those messages? For this demo, we used […]

Solar Panel Principles

Our previous post, Ground Solar, Part I, attracted a lot of visitors in only a few days. Before getting into more about our hurricane experience, it would be great to fill in the gaps with some general principles that are good to know when evaluating solar panels. Last time, we gave a homework assignment, and […]

Ground Solar, Part I

Recently, power went out for three days during and after Hurricane Matthew. Fortunately, we’ve been working with solar for a while. To keep our freezer and refrigerators running enough (about 12 hours per day) to keep things cool, we set up a ground-mounted solar system. This is a fancy term for “we just put the […]

Building A Simple Pyrolyzer

Check out our step-by-step instructional video on how to build a simple pyrolyzer prototype: Before attempting to build this, be sure to carefully read the safety tips in the previous post: Pyrolyzer Safety Materials used: – A scrap, but new and undamaged, 55 gallon steel barrel, with 2″ and 3/4″ plug holes. – Two 2-foot […]

Pyrolyzer Safety

In the next post, we will show how to build a practical pyrolyzer to turn a pile of wood chips into useful fuel gas. But before we do, this post gives some safety tips for using this or any pyrolyzer. On this site, we show people how to do things for education and entertainment, and […]

Cat Pill Syringe

Zene doesn’t like taking her pills. Usually, it is a claw fight, and she wins. This time, Audrey took a claw to the mouth. And then we 3D printed the Cat Pill Syringe: Download the STL files: Syringe Plunger