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re: need power to my land
thu, 28 oct 1999
sojourner  wrote

> > > (i actually am living in my camper while i build my
> > > small 18x24 cabin).

> > solar-heated, of course?

> boy, was it solar heated this summer - 105 outside...

i meant the new cabin.

> ...as for solar heating in the fall/winter - well, i want to be warm.
> so no.

hmmm. an unbeliever. but it's just basic physics and arithmetic...
and aesthetics, of course. where is your new cabin, anyhow?
at the north pole? i'm planning to solar heat a 12x16' shed this winter.

for the moment i'm helping a neighbor heat with wood, vs
existing electric baseboards. after removing the basement
ceiling insulation (to be reinstalled in the attic) and adding 60
4" x 10' capped thinwall pvc sewer pipes full of water (about
3,000 pounds at 1 btu/f-lb) with some 3/4" holes and #3 rubber
stoppers between the basement rafters for infrequent stove-stokings
every few days, a la russian fireplace, i got to thinking that water
can store 5x more heat with better house temperature control if it
has a larger temperature swing, say 80-130 f vs 70-80 f, so we're
now enclosing the stove in a 4x8x8' tall insulated box full of sealed
containers of water, mostly 4 gallon plastic parallelepipeds, with a
window fan in the box wall and a heating thermostat upstairs.
(i wrapped the stove with dark aluminum window screen to avoid
melting the plastic tubs.)

we just got this 1400 ft^2 house blower door tested in a free
utility audit, and it's pretty airtight, 0.6 ach before the scheduled
improvements, eg 24 free electrical outlet gaskets.

three of the plastic 55 gallon water drums (including one on
top of some hollow concrete blocks on top of the stove) will
have 300 feet of swan premium rubber reinforced garden
hose ("handles hot water up to 160 f," with a lifetime guarantee,
grainger's stock number 2p098 at $37.85 per 75' length)
snaking in and out of the drumwater between the cold water
laundry faucet and the drainpipe fitting on the electric water
heater tank in order to preheat water for showers, etc. i'm a
little concerned about melting the plastic drain fitting with the
hot water, but the water heater is 17 years old and the utility
will soon replace it, free :-)

nick





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