national meet at Batlow 2013
Collyn Rivers, well known 12volt & RV
author, was invited to host a couple of talks. The first was entitled 'the
essence of 12volt' & outlined what was needed to produce a reliable 12volt system to
suit your required needs. Without the proper sizing of batteries, solar panels &
chargers you will be way behind to start with. Collyn suggested to work out your
daily power needs & then size a system that would be recharged by lunchtime,
that is you are better off with larger sized solar panels than larger capacity
batteries that only partially recharge each day.
Proper wire size is also an important
aspect in setting up your system. Collyn spoke on the confusion with cables
rated in a profusion of different sizes, such as auto wire, AWG, B&S & ISO. On
top of all that auto wire is rated at what size hole it will fit through,
insulation & all, with no actual relation to the size of the copper conductor itself.
Of interest was the Redarc BM battery
charger & monitor with serial
number one which Collyn had trialed before the product release.
Shane Adam's hosted a practical workshop
for the DIY's showing how to run cable & the various components used when
installing a dual battery system in the vehicle or a camper trailer battery. He
then went on the explain how to connect a multimeter on the positive side to
show the draw in amps from a LED light. Crimping, soldering & joining wire with
solder where shown. Shane then let members have a go themselves getting a feel
of how to do the job.
& Allie Roberson hosted a kids anklet & bracelet making workshop.
This is the first time the two girls have hosted a workshop after many years
participating in workshops hosted by their parents.
Collyn Rivers second talk was on the
subject of what a solar panel really produced & what you could expect from them.
He explained the
output losses of a solar panel can be up to 30% of that claimed by the
manufacture through various factors such as cable voltage drop, the temperature
of the panel itself, the position of the panel & the geographical location in
Australia. Proper sized cable
must be used to minimise voltage drop over the distance from the solar panel to
the batteries. Also for
every 10 degrees Celcius the
solar panel is over 25 degrees, not ambient but the temperature of the panel
itself, it looses 5% output. A panel mounted horizontal can occur losses of up to
amount of sunlight available is called PSH or Peak Sun
Hours & is when a metre square solar panel in size produces a 1000 watts. In Sydney for
example around the equinox ie 12 hours sun & 12 hours night, there is only 5.6
Peak Sun Hours, however a portable panel can be used to follow the sun to
maximise the input. With advancements is technology a MPPT solar regulator can
also be used to recover 10 to15% of otherwise non-accessible energy.
Jenny Peisley held a
workshop on the use of the Dreampot. The Dream Pot consists
of a double layer insulated outer pot with one or two
stainless steel inner pots & lids which can be used as
saucepans. The cooking process is very simple. All you need
do is place the ingredients into the inner pot & gently boil
on your stove for the required short time based on the
recipe. Then place the inner pot directly into the Dream Pot
& close the lid. The thermo cooking process now starts by
cooking the food in the residual heat. No further monitoring
is required during this process allowing you the convenience
of going about other tasks or while you are travelling. Your
meal cannot burn, boil over or overcook. After the necessary
thermo cooking time in the Dream Pot the meal is ready to
serve up to eight hours later.
Dave & Jan Cook with Dave & Joy Wilkinson held a trivia night in the
warmth of the Batlow Bowling Club. The event was well attended & once again a
great success. There was plenty of friendly rivalry between the tables as teams
sort the winners trophy which was donated by Jamie Hazelden of Jamie's Touring
Solutions. The gold coin entry raised $244 for the Batlow Rotary.