Electronics System (1 Viewer)

Mad Max

Newbie
Joined
Sep 12, 2013
Messages
35
Location
East Coast
What type of useful electronics/electronics system do you carry on the road and why? Disregarding the type of cellphone you use. Do you carry a scanner, laptop, hiking watch or a tablet? How do you keep it charged?

I have a water resistant goal zero solar panel that can recharge an e-reader, cellphone, I-pod and double AA batteries. The double AA recharging is great for my head lamp, and my hiking GPS. My hiking GPS is a garmin eTrex 20 loaded with a topographical map of the US. This GPS comes in pretty handing when looking for a water source in the woods, and finding a camp site for the night that isn't in a swamp. Another helpful feature on this GPS is that any road that is not labeled on it is generally some sort of abandoned service road or hunting road. I have an item on my bike that tells me how many miles I've traveled, the temp, and the speed I am traveling at. I have this because I really like being able to accurately estimate how long it will take me to get from point A to point B. I like to have a crank radio/flash light as well so I can keep up with the weather. I carry an older kindle that is loaded with manuals and such. I carry a cellphone, but don't really use it much. Since electronics are kind of a luxury on the road, I don't like to carry anything that I can't keep charged off the grid for free.
 
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travelin

Wanderer
Joined
Dec 15, 2011
Messages
322
i carry :

internet air card, automatic satellite finding antenna,

three laptops right now,

4 Trojan t105 batteries,

30 amp mttp charge controller,

a 3000 watt modified sine wave inverter

2500 watt pure sine wave inverter with 50 amp battery charger

two 285 watt solar panels

one 80 watt solar panel

a 20 amp battery charger

two Magellan gps, five inch and a seven inch screen

laser range finder

Carmen electra sex robot
 

outskirts

I ain't getting any younger.
Joined
Feb 13, 2011
Messages
475
Location
New Jersey, United States
I don't have so much faith in electronic devices. I prefer to do my online research ahead of time and make my own markings and notes on a paper map. Don't get me wrong all these electronic devices are nice, but I often have bad luck with them and failures happen. I like to keep up on my "old school" skills and not have my functioning dependent on to many electronic devices. So yeah, use the devices if you have them, but also be able to just venture into the wilderness without them, just as all of our ancestors once did.

I will say though, I do like my solar/crank flashlight radio. It's a little bulky but it has a shit load of radio bands and a great lamp light. The lamplight works better than the flashlight on the thing. The radio uses more juice than the lights so I don't run it hour after hour. I also have a DC adapter for it, but I primarily rely on the solar charging and just resort to the crank when it's dead and I just need 15 minutes of light. I can also charge cellphones off of it, except for smart phones, it does not provide enough power to charge one of them, I've tried and it takes more time than it is worth.
 

Mad Max

Newbie
Joined
Sep 12, 2013
Messages
35
Location
East Coast
I don't have so much faith in electronic devices. I prefer to do my online research ahead of time and make my own markings and notes on a paper map. Don't get me wrong all these electronic devices are nice, but I often have bad luck with them and failures happen. I like to keep up on my "old school" skills and not have my functioning dependent on to many electronic devices. So yeah, use the devices if you have them, but also be able to just venture into the wilderness without them, just as all of our ancestors once did.

I will say though, I do like my solar/crank flashlight radio. It's a little bulky but it has a shit load of radio bands and a great lamp light. The lamplight works better than the flashlight on the thing. The radio uses more juice than the lights so I don't run it hour after hour. I also have a DC adapter for it, but I primarily rely on the solar charging and just resort to the crank when it's dead and I just need 15 minutes of light. I can also charge cellphones off of it, except for smart phones, it does not provide enough power to charge one of them, I've tried and it takes more time than it is worth.

I agree with you on the old school navigation skills. I like to carry a US road map and a compass with me as well. Which solar crank flashlight radio do you have? I have a red cross one that I do not like very much. It appears to be designed for some one who is sitting in a living room during a storm, and not for some one who might be out in it.
 

Mad Max

Newbie
Joined
Sep 12, 2013
Messages
35
Location
East Coast
i carry :

internet air card, automatic satellite finding antenna,

three laptops right now,

4 Trojan t105 batteries,

30 amp mttp charge controller,

a 3000 watt modified sine wave inverter

2500 watt pure sine wave inverter with 50 amp battery charger

two 285 watt solar panels

one 80 watt solar panel

a 20 amp battery charger

two Magellan gps, five inch and a seven inch screen

laser range finder

Carmen electra sex robot

Wow, you seem like you have a pretty good off the grid system. Can you tell me a little more about it's capabilities. Excluding the sex robot
 

travelin

Wanderer
Joined
Dec 15, 2011
Messages
322
just like it says.

four Trojan t 105 gives me about 450 amp/hour of battery.

the two 285 watt panels are over 24 volts but we will use that for figuring. when sent through the MTTP controller it yields up under absolute optimum conditions about 923 watts at 14.8 volts which is the voltage Trojan t 105 batteries will fully charge at.

the 3kw modified sine wave inverter supplies up to 25 amps of power at 120 volts. when on the inverter, all the trailers dc stuff, lights, water pump, heater blower, dc fridge requires running on propane, bathroom vent fan, stove vent fan, and hot water heater igniter all run straight off batteries.

I also have a 4kw gas generator I can run if I need to put a charge on batteries. when on genny im hooked into AC for the trailer with a separate ac line running two chargers. when I need fast charge I use two chargers and break down the battery connections from twin series\parallel to two separate 12 volt banks and use a charger on each. since my chargers are different, once the big one charges one bank I put it on the other bank and use the smaller one to "float the first bank at 13.4 volts until I can get em charged close enough, then I hook them back into a four battery twin series/parallel bank and then hit em with the big charger. each time prior to doing this I check the levels with an automatic water level device and keep em full with distilled water.

once batteries are fully charged if I am on grid I switch to internal charger which feeds a trickle from the dc panel inside to the batteries. if on grid like this more than three days I check the water level.

if charging off genny I just shut down and go about my bidness with a 9 cubic foot freezer being kept cold. microwave, tv and whatever else I want to use ac.

so far ive only went four days without charging and the batteries showed 55% when I checked em at the end of that four days. this is just about as far as you want to discharge Trojan t 105 as deeper discharge can significantly shorten battery life.

the system is new and only partially installed. the panels ride in the back of the truck and are not mounted.

once I get home next week the batteries, both big panels, smaller panel, another deep cycle 12 volt battery I forgot to mention, the big mttp controller and a little 8 amp controller along with both inverters all go to the farm to provide remote power. one set up will be running the well on the farm and the other will be for casual power in the field at some point I designate and build or have built a shed.

as soon as I get home I will begin research on locations and pricing for rolls-surette sure nuff deep cycles. these are six volt batteries that are three 2 volt cells ganged. weight is about 220 pounds each gang. these are BIG batteries and one option will be to use 48 volts dc which would require at least 24 cells or six three ganged batteries. rather have 12 of them though.

to charge this im planning on either 2400 or 4800 watts of solar panels to be installed. ill have to do sun angle study to find optimum angle.

later I plan on feeding these batteries with multiple hydroelectric plants on the creek and try out things like wood gassifier and even STEAM ENGINE to provide power to the batteries.

yeah, im gonna do shit, lots of shit.

and no I really don't belong here as I don't live the lifestyle and im older than most here. I travel and live in a farily new travel trailer with a good truck to pull it and until recently my wife and I traveled together and both worked the same trade. she is gone now walking in splendor and light and I remain upon this earth until it is my time to go elsewhere.

with her leaving I realized I am done with the road for a while, a term to probably be measured in years or perhaps the rest of my life and I yearn for the home farm which sits empty.

I keep my eyes and ears open and sometimes im able to help out a traveling kid. that's why im here.
 
Last edited:

Mad Max

Newbie
Joined
Sep 12, 2013
Messages
35
Location
East Coast
just like it says.

four Trojan t 105 gives me about 450 amp/hour of battery.

the two 285 watt panels are over 24 volts but we will use that for figuring. when sent through the MTTP controller it yields up under absolute optimum conditions about 923 watts at 14.8 volts which is the voltage Trojan t 105 batteries will fully charge at.

the 3kw modified sine wave inverter supplies up to 25 amps of power at 120 volts. when on the inverter, all the trailers dc stuff, lights, water pump, heater blower, dc fridge requires running on propane, bathroom vent fan, stove vent fan, and hot water heater igniter all run straight off batteries.

I also have a 4kw gas generator I can run if I need to put a charge on batteries. when on genny im hooked into AC for the trailer with a separate ac line running two chargers. when I need fast charge I use two chargers and break down the battery connections from twin series\parallel to two separate 12 volt banks and use a charger on each. since my chargers are different, once the big one charges one bank I put it on the other bank and use the smaller one to "float the first bank at 13.4 volts until I can get em charged close enough, then I hook them back into a four battery twin series/parallel bank and then hit em with the big charger. each time prior to doing this I check the levels with an automatic water level device and keep em full with distilled water.

once batteries are fully charged if I am on grid I switch to internal charger which feeds a trickle from the dc panel inside to the batteries. if on grid like this more than three days I check the water level.

if charging off genny I just shut down and go about my bidness with a 9 cubic foot freezer being kept cold. microwave, tv and whatever else I want to use ac.

so far ive only went four days without charging and the batteries showed 55% when I checked em at the end of that four days. this is just about as far as you want to discharge Trojan t 105 as deeper discharge can significantly shorten battery life.

the system is new and only partially installed. the panels ride in the back of the truck and are not mounted.

once I get home next week the batteries, both big panels, smaller panel, another deep cycle 12 volt battery I forgot to mention, the big mttp controller and a little 8 amp controller along with both inverters all go to the farm to provide remote power. one set up will be running the well on the farm and the other will be for casual power in the field at some point I designate and build or have built a shed.

as soon as I get home I will begin research on locations and pricing for rolls-surette sure nuff deep cycles. these are six volt batteries that are three 2 volt cells ganged. weight is about 220 pounds each gang. these are BIG batteries and one option will be to use 48 volts dc which would require at least 24 cells or six three ganged batteries. rather have 12 of them though.

to charge this im planning on either 2400 or 4800 watts of solar panels to be installed. ill have to do sun angle study to find optimum angle.

later I plan on feeding these batteries with multiple hydroelectric plants on the creek and try out things like wood gassifier and even STEAM ENGINE to provide power to the batteries.

yeah, im gonna do shit, lots of shit.

and no I really don't belong here as I don't live the lifestyle and im older than most here. I travel and live in a farily new travel trailer with a good truck to pull it and until recently my wife and I traveled together and both worked the same trade. she is gone now walking in splendor and light and I remain upon this earth until it is my time to go elsewhere.

with her leaving I realized I am done with the road for a while, a term to probably be measured in years or perhaps the rest of my life and I yearn for the home farm which sits empty.

I keep my eyes and ears open and sometimes im able to help out a traveling kid. that's why im here.

Sorry to hear about your wife. I'm glad you are here. I know this site is dedicated to the traveling punk culture, but people with experience and knowledge are needed every where. People can be snotty assholes all they want about how they are living the life style, but all travelers have a natural connection. And at the end of the day, the snotty travelers are always the ones asking you for a buck, or a place to crash for the night, and then don't want to share any info. Besides, I think the off the grid/homestead knowledge kind of goes hand in hand with the punk culture. To me the point of both is just to be free and as DIY as you can be.

I have been doing some gassifier research myself. I had a friend that had a WWII style gasifier hooked up to a conversion van that he was touring the country in. He was supposed to come and help me build my own once I had enough funds. But unfortunately he passed away about 5 months ago. I was thinking off getting a 1970s-1980s dually truck with a 454 and trailer to pull. The plan was to convert the trailer with insulation, fold down beds, solar panels, wind turbines, a gutter water collection system, and a wood burning stove. I still want to do this but my time line has changed.

I have also been researching off the grid home stead ideas. I think a super adobe house with aquaponics might be a go way to go.
 

travelin

Wanderer
Joined
Dec 15, 2011
Messages
322
im still up in the air on permanent structure. I don't have a lot of space for permanent structures though the place is 32 acres most of it is flood plain with only three spots accessable in the event of a big flood. one is the entrance and I hope to get as much as 3/4 acre leveled enough for building.

everything else will either have to be on 14 foot stilts or have the ability to weather immersion for up to a week.

one more week about and ill be there and these dreams will begin to become reality!
 

Mad Max

Newbie
Joined
Sep 12, 2013
Messages
35
Location
East Coast
That is a problem I hadn't considered before. Maybe a conex box on top of your stilts, or a re-enforced yurt? Let me know what you end up going with.
 

outskirts

I ain't getting any younger.
Joined
Feb 13, 2011
Messages
475
Location
New Jersey, United States
I have a Kaito Voyager. It's been pretty handy so far. It gives lots of options to power it, conventional AA+ batteries, built in rechargable batteries, 6 volt DC adapter(didn't come with one, but I found one), solar panel and a crank.
 

Psi em

Newbie
Joined
Aug 8, 2012
Messages
45
Age
39
Location
Raleigh, North Carolina
That eton Red Cross radio (FR360 for me) was a huge disappointment. Ended up just using it as a flash light. It's a very good LED flash light. I only got about 10 minutes of radio after cranking til my arm hurt. Then there was something weird about the antenna and I couldn't pick up any decent stations in the woods (weak non-commercial stations<=>87.9->91.9).

I have a red cross one that I do not like very much. It appears to be designed for some one who is sitting in a living room during a storm, and not for some one who might be out in it.

I picked up an old $15 'world band' radio (FM, AM, ShortWave & LongWave). That thing is way cooler. I hate the sound of silence. Have to have some kind of noise playing in the background, even if it's just static. While tuning the shortwaves, I may pick up some Chinese talk radio, weird Morse code signals, militant evangelists... Also a huge fan of public radio.
----
Stocked up on those rechargeable AAA and AA batteries. Randomly bought some Ultralast Green batteries and they've held up really well for the past year. Looks like they could go a few more years with no problem.
---
Swap multiple cell phone batteries as needed. I use my Palm smartphones for reading/holding libraries of eBooks and never actually talk on them. Easier than carrying books. Stays on airplane mode to save energy.

And my laptop is this weird little thing that has a secondary battery bay. Keep a few laptop batteries but rarely use a laptop in the woods. Good to use at libraries where the Wifi is on even when the library is closed. Should probably swap the old motorized disk drive for a motionless solid state drive to get more battery life.

Um... Yeah, that's it. I don't go big on electronics. Very small electronics and very old electronics do it for me.
 

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