Why….

22 09 2010

Ok so lately I’ve gotten a bit “excited” about solar power. Just ask my poor family…sigh. Poor things have to listen to me constantly talk about peak solar power production and micro-inverters vs standard inverters and polycrystalline photovoltaic cells vs monocrystalline silicon. Endlessly. God–I’m a horribly boring human.

And it shouldn’t really be too surprising, my first huge fear back when I was 5 was that the Sun would go super nova (damn you Marvel comics of the 60’s—-though I will forgive you as you did help with my vocabulary). I literally couldn’t sleep as I worried all the time that the Sun would just suddenly explode.

Now I’m older and worry a bit less about the Sun going nova. Now I mostly just ponder, “Mmmm, if the Sun goes nova I wonder what my peak solar power production will be for those few nano seconds before I am vaporized.” Yes, I am that obsessed.

Coinciding with this solar obession is the fairly obviously offshoot of wanting to use only solar power for just about everything.

Clean, freeish (more on that in another post), local in a way….just a nice way to power my computer, lights,  fridge. And hopefully a way to power all my non-human transportation (I still plan to bike and walk and putter about as much as possible). Which leads to:

ELECTRIC TRANSPORTATION

Ok, my commute is rather short (5 to 7 miles each way depending on route–shorter by car or scooter, longer by bike). So say 12 miles round trip. And we have lovely weather here in central New Mexico (310 sunny days. Hardly ever any humidity. Some snow in the winter, but hardly ever horrid). Which is why I’ve been carless for over 5 years. I bike from May to October and ride one of my scooters from October to May. Fun, easy, cheap…and great parking at work . 🙂

Still, when the temperature is  in the teens or less–brrrr— on my early morning commute to work in January/February, well it is times like that when I wonder when I will break down and buy a cage. That and the occasional hail storm, ice storm–the worst–, or being called in late at night and not wanting to “gear-up”. Those days add up a bit as I get older. So I often wonder, “Ok old man, when are you finally going to get a car again?” And that day may be sooner than I thought…more on that in my weekend blog about “Electric CARS.”

So I will likely be getting a car soonish. But on top of that I really want an Electric Motorcycle too.  Why?               Why not 🙂

Actually it just fits me well. I like riding on less than 4 wheels. I ride almost always alone. My commute is short. Why lug around all the weight of a cage? And why use gasoline when I have solar panels on my roof??

So…Been wanting an Electric car for 3 years now. Been wanting Solar Panels. And now I also want an Electric Motorcycle (or scooter…but the Electric motorcycles are just more advanced right now…and actually way cool. Yes I have only ever owned scooters, but maybe now is the time to expand and add a large wheel motorbike to my “collection”). Well with the solar added this summer, one of three down, two to go. 🙂 —Yes Becki I am trying to keep the economy afloat all by myself. Though, sadly, both the future car and motorcycle purchases will likely be in 2011. So I hope the economy can keep itself afloat until then.

And with that I pause here….I envision three posts this weekend.

One post on my Electric car travails (Aptera to LEAF to Fiat 500EV…oh how this has been a fun and painful odyssey…I would say damn you Aptera, but in reality I learned so much about electric vehicles from my time over at ApteraForum.com).

One post on the latest news from Brammo Powercycles. If I had endless money I would buy everybody I know one of their electric motorcycles…Beautiful and efficient…My latest techno crush.

And one post devoted to my lovely solar panels. Facts, figures…you know, all that exciting stuff. Like showing vacation slides to strangers. Who doesn’t love that?

Mmmm, if I’m smart I will make a post about my wife and kids too… 🙂

Gavin

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2 responses

23 09 2010
protomech

Hey, sometimes those vacation slides can be really neat if other people are interested in vacationing in the same location..

I’ve done a bit of research into solar panels, payoff still seems to far.. would be interested to know what your collection rates are vs the NREL solar maps, how you dealt with insurance, and thoughts on the installation process.

23 09 2010
Gavin

I plan to write up a blog about all of that this weekend…so keep an eye out 🙂
Will go over costs, tax rebates, collection rates so far, set up and cost savings…as well as pay off time line.
And a bit about the panels and racks themselves…etc etc…
Hopefully it won’t be too dry and technical…
Gavin

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