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3 number ten cans of banana chips….I think $9.98 a piece was good. Today $23…. If I was aware then….. I would have gotten more.

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  • 130 push ups in 3 sets
  • Ordered 2 cases HDR MREs
  • Bought extra tubes/tires, patch kit, and a small air pump for our bicycles
  • Researched eBikes with hopes of purchasing one early next year
  • Replaced expired meds in my large, comprehensive medical kit
  • Attended church
  • Finished assembling my SHTF 1-bag tool kit
  • Bought an additional NiMH/Li-Ion battery charger
 
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Sounds great. Good good….
I’ve been thinking about things…. Think I have couple trees that would hinder … more firewood and would probably plan it shortly (funds dependent) after a new roof. Try and prolong remove and reinstall.
I had 3 roofing outfits come out and look at my roof and tell me how much life I had left in it. I took a look at it myself first, before I called anyone, and I had guessed about 5 years left in it, at least. The home was built in 2002 by a quality builder, but I don't know who he hired to do the roof. The shingles are 25-year PABCO architectural style, which are apparently better than the 3-tab shingles. Anyway, I just wanted to see what these 3 outfits would say...

The guy with the first outfit said 5 to 10 years left, and he provided the cheapest estimate with 3 different "tiers" of products from which to choose.
The second outfit was the most expensive by far (2X the first outfit) and they said 3 to 5 years, and they were a real high-pressure sales team of two. They were here for 3-1/2 hours and I almost had to tell them to leave my property because the third outfit was due in soon. They were ganging up on me like it was a used car purchase - very uncomfortable. They kept calling back to the office every few minutes "to get a better deal". It was brutal, but I stuck to my guns...
The third outfit was in the middle, but much closer to the first outfit (about 20% to 25% more than the first outfit), and said at least 5 years left in my roof.

So, since I had 3 roofers telling me I had 5 more years at least, and the solar panel outfit will do 1 take-down/reinstall for no charge during the life of the panels, I figured why roof now when it doesn't need it yet. So I pulled the trigger on the panels.

There is no shade hindrance on my backyard (south-facing) roof from any of my trees and none from my neighbors. The solar estimate clearly shows "No tree removal required". Also, the federal tax credit (FTC) for WA residents phases out this year from 26% of the cost of the project through the end of 2022, then the FTC goes down to 20% for 2023, and then sunsets at 0% by the end of 2023. So, if you live in WA and you're thinking about doing it, then do it now.

No money down, the solar company pays the first 6 months of loan payments, I'll throw the FTC back on top the principal when I get the FTC check, and the interest rate is fixed at 3.99% for the life of the loan, even if I throw the FTC back on the principal and/or refinance it. I'm basically trading a $135/month electric bill (average) for a $115/month solar panel loan payment for the first 18 months (with the solar company paying the first 6 months). Then when the FTC check comes and I throw that against the principal (there's no prepayment penalty!), then I'll have a $137/month solar panel loan payment that will remain the same for 25 years, while the power bill would do nothing but go up and up and up over time. What's not to like?

I can even buy batteries for my system, put 'em in the attic and hook 'em up to the panels, and go completely off-grid electrically. No blackouts or power outages ever again! :)
 
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I had 3 roofing outfits come out and look at my roof and tell me how much life I had left in it. I took a look at it myself first, before I called anyone, and I had guessed about 5 years left in it, at least. The home was built in 2002 by a quality builder, but I don't know who he hired to do the roof. The shingles are 25-year PABCO architectural style, which are apparently better than the 3-tab shingles. Anyway, I just wanted to see what these 3 outfits would say...

The guy with the first outfit said 5 to 10 years left, and he provided the cheapest estimate with 3 different "tiers" of products from which to choose.
The second outfit was the most expensive by far (2X the first outfit) and they said 3 to 5 years, and they were a real high-pressure sales team of two. They were here for 3-1/2 hours and I almost had to tell them to leave my property because the third outfit was due in soon. They were ganging up on like it was a used car purchase - very uncomfortable. They kept calling back to the office every few minutes "to get a better deal". It was brutal, but I stuck to my guns...
The third outfit was in the middle, but much closer to the first outfit (about 20% to 25% more than the first outfit), and said at least 5 years left in my roof.

So, since I had 3 roofers telling me I had 5 more years at least, and the solar panel outfit will do 1 take-down/reinstall for no charge during the life of the panels, I figured why roof now when it doesn't need it yet. So I pulled the trigger on the panels.

There is no shade hindrance on my backyard (south-facing) roof from any of my trees and none from my neighbors. The solar estimate clearly shows "No tree removal required". Also, the federal tax credit (FTC) for WA residents phases out this year from 26% of the cost of the project through the end of 2022, then the FTC goes down to 20% for 2023, and then sunsets at 0% by the end of 2023. So, if you live in WA and you're thinking about doing it, then do it now.

No money down, the solar company pays the first 6 months of loan payments, I'll throw the FTC back on top the principal when I get the FTC check, and the interest rate is fixed at 3.99% for the life of the loan, even if I throw the FTC back on the principal and/or refinance it. I'm basically trading a $135/month electric bill (average) for a $115/month solar panel loan payment for the first 18 months (with the solar company paying the first 6 months). Then when the FTC check comes and I throw that against the principal (there's no prepayment penalty!), then I'll have a $137/month solar panel loan payment that will remain the same for 25 years, while the power bill would do nothing but go up and up and up over time. What's not to like?

I can even buy batteries for my system, put 'em in the attic and hook 'em up to the panels, and go completely off-grid electrically. No blackouts or power outages ever again! :)
Thank you, you are an encouragement…… I’ve only thought about the project. We actually just signed for the house 4 weeks ago after renting it for 2 years. I’m so excited about my own home and would love going solar. I’m doing a 200 sq foot separate building under permit requirements first with at least 60-80 sq foot of panels my self. Hopefully learn. And rain collection on back side.
But your insight here is refreshing…. You’ve done your due diligence and gave me perspective. My home is flat roof torch down and older. So I have plenty of homework to do but I have time. Too bad the solar programs are going away for now, but we’ll see.
Thx for the reply.
 
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  • 130 push ups in 3 sets
  • Ordered 2 cases HDR MREs
  • Bought extra tubes/tires, patch kit, and a small air pump for our bicycles
  • Researched eBikes with hopes of purchasing one early next year
  • Replaced expired meds in my large, comprehensive medical kit
  • Attended church
  • Finished assembling my SHTF 1-bag tool kit
  • Bought an additional NiMH/Li-Ion battery charger
Doing the things I like it man! Organization and rotation of supplies is key
 
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So, since I had 3 roofers telling me I had 5 more years at least, and the solar panel outfit will do 1 take-down/reinstall for no charge during the life of the panels, I figured why roof now when it doesn't need it yet. So I pulled the trigger on the panels.
My understanding is that solar panel companies won't install if your roof isn't in almost perfect condition.
 
...

I can even buy batteries for my system, put 'em in the attic and hook 'em up to the panels, and go completely off-grid electrically. No blackouts or power outages ever again! :)
I wouldn't think batteries in an attic to be a thing, interesting!

That said, wouldn't some type of ground level battery room/area/shed be more convenient though?
 
My understanding is that solar panel companies won't install if your roof isn't in almost perfect condition.
I'd venture to say that probably depends upon the provider, yes? Solgen Power flew a drone over my roof and said I was GTG with the roof in its current condition, at 20 years old. Granted, I have some pretty damned good shingles on the roof right now. Solgen Power was quite explicit that they would do one free take-down/reinstall during the 25-year lifespan of the loan. All I have to do is pay the storage fee at a rental storage place for a couple/few days - however long it takes the roofers to do their job. Solgen will perform all of the labor to remove the panels, transport them to the storage unit, place them in storage, remove them from storage, return them to my property, reinstall them in exactly the same place (even the same holes - all GPS'ed in and double-measured, he said) and reconnect them to the meter.

Even if I pay the loan off early, the 25-year clock on the TD/RI would still run clear out to 2047. Not to put too fine a point on it, but I plan to be dead by then...
 
I wouldn't think batteries in an attic to be a thing, interesting!
Not usually, since most people's attics aren't very big/tall. However, I asked about that specifically, and when I showed him the headroom in the attic space, he said they easily could put the battery bank up there if I wanted to save space in my garage. The headspace in the attic under the panels would leave Chewbacca reaching on his tiptoes and still not touching the sheathing. I have a thing for really tall ceilings - don't want to feel cramped... Most of the rooms on the first floor of my home have 10-foot ceilings, except the hallway bathroom and the laundry/utility room (both 8-foot ceilings). My master bedroom has a 10-foot coved ceiling that is really pretty. My entry foyer and living room have 14½-foot ceilings. Did I say I have a thing for high ceilings?
That said, wouldn't some type of ground level battery room/area/shed be more convenient though?
I have a "quarter-door" (2'-0" W x 2'-3" H) in the wall of the upstairs bonus room that leads directly into the attic space underneath where the panel array would be installed. It couldn't be more convenient if it was designed to access a solar battery bank. Once through that door, it's that Chewbacca situation I mentioned above. Reach for the stars... :)
 
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Xaevian

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Not usually, since most people's attics aren't very big/tall. However, I asked about that specifically, and when I showed him the headroom in the attic space, he said they easily could put the battery bank up there if I wanted to save space in my garage. The headspace in the attic under the panels would leave Chewbacca reaching on his tiptoes and still not touching the sheathing. I have a thing for really tall ceilings - don't don't want to feel cramped... Most of the rooms on the first floor of my home have 10-foot ceilings, except the hallway bathroom and the laundry/utility room (both 8-foot ceilings). My master bedroom has a 10-foot coved ceiling that is really pretty. My entry foyer and living room have 14½-foot ceilings. Did I say I have a thing for high ceilings?

I have a "quarter-door" (2'-0" W x 2'-3" H) in the wall of the upstairs bonus room that leads directly into the attic space underneath where the panel array would be installed. It couldn't be more convenient if it was designed to access a solar battery bank. Once through that door, it's that Chewbacca situation I mentioned above. Reach for the stars... :)
So, you just want your panels to be closer to the sun. I get it, now.
 
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A few hours ago Starlink announced that we can buy, with immediate shipping, a Starlink "terminal" kit (dish and router, etc.) that will run on their newly announced RV service. I ordered one immediately (been on the waitlist for the residential service for 16 months). I have one 100 watt solar panel and a second one is coming in July. I intend to look into a small self contained battery bank, solar controller and inverter system which should power the terminal during the day and part of the night.

This system will work anywhere in N. America that is on their coverage map, if it is in the Available or Waitlist areas (but not the "coming soon"):


The service will be deprioritized behind residential customers, but availability will be > 99% and will range from 5-250 mbps with no data cap. This is (hopefully) far superior to my current WISP provider which, in the last month or so, has had about 50% availability and 0-5 mbps with a 200 GB data cap.

The system will work anywhere there is a clear view of the north sky and it consumes less than 100 watts (except when there is ice/snow, in which case it consumes a LOT more), so it can run off solar panels and batteries, with no fixed dependence on the consumer side on local backhaul. If a SL ground station is not available, then the data is transferred to another satellite via laser, until an available ground station can be used. This makes it very resilient to power outages and comm systems outages, even if they are region wide - e.g., if the PNW has an Cascadian earthquake, it is likely I would still have data comms as long as I can power my end of the link.

If I were in a long term outage situation and using solar panels/etc. to power the system, I would probably turn it off at night when I am not using it while asleep. I saw one estimate of "idle" (not being actively used) power usage as 40 watts - still looking for that table again. Either way, this would be a good source for comms - it seems to be working well for Ukraine.
 
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Ordered a folding portable 100 watt solar panel with charge controller for $150.


The other 100W panels I ordered previously were cheaper - $65 & $75, but are not portable and don't come with a charge controller or legs to prop them up. They are more for a permanent install. But I think I can use at least one of them in parallel with this portable setup. I intend to use the other panels for a permanent setup though - maybe get a third or fourth panel, and a charge controller and batteries.

I put the KillAWatt meter on the freezer in the shop and it used, on average, about 150 watts per hour, more than I thought from the PGE meter reports to PGE? Not sure what is going on there - the KillAWatt meter also reports 155 volts. I need to take my VOM out there and see what the voltage really is. I was thinking I could run the freezer off two panels and a battery, but now I don't think so, unless I run the freezer periodically during a power outage - like run it 4-8 hours during max sunlight (e.g., 9-5) and then have it shut off the rest of the time.

First I think I need to get a temp gauge alarm - one that I can record the temp inside the freezer, and that can let me know if the temp gets above say 15* F - but it needs to be wireless somehow.
 
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Took my machine and only a couple extras of items home on Wednesday. Got an ultimate prepping machine, have to pickup all the extras I ordered with it Friday as I had to remove the front passenger seat to barely fit the unit in the car.

Home freeze drying machine, got a good deal from my favorite gun shop at Lincoln City Sporting Goods.

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Yesterday was pruning day.

The snow/wind we had a while back did a number on some of my trees.

I got a chance to try out the much smaller Echo chainsaw I got in a trade (I already have a Stihl 461, which is heavy and powerful and not very fun for pruning and cutting small stuff).

At first I wasn't impressed by the quality (especially compared to any Stihl), but after all it is just a $200 saw - but it proved to be plenty light and handy for cutting thick branches/etc. so now I have a backup and a saw I won't be so reluctant to loan out, including to those who don't have a lot of chainsaw experience (the Stihl is a beast so I don't let just anybody use it). I have a Stihl Kombi, but it needs a new chain and never cut as good as the Echo.

So now when we have a lot of trees down, I (or one of the experienced neighbors) can concentrate on the big stuff while someone else can use the Echo for limbing. Remains to be seen how long the saw lasts though, but with light use I don't think it will get as much use as my Stihl. I have a lot of confidence in my Stihl tools - I've had them for almost ten years with no problems.

Also, tapped my stored gas - been in the 55 gal drum for a couple of years - I treated it. No problems with it in the mower or saws.
 
  • Ordered an emergency antibiotic pack from Jase.
  • Rust-proofed and tested a magazine for a funky little pistol.
  • Got the parts together for the final work on a farm/utility vehicle I've been picking away at. (Alas, the weather is supposed to blow over the weekend.)
  • Read some more from the preparedness stack. (There are at least three topics I've committed to reading about on at all times, preparedness being one of them. Went through some wackiness, largely in the negative sense, earlier in the year, so fell out of habit. Back at it.)
 
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