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Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Sorry to hear about Linda's friend. It sounds like he was lucky, though. My dad had throat cancer and ended up loosing his larynx and gaining a stoma (hole) in his throat so he could breath. Getting to understand his speech when he used his hand-held electro-larynx took some time.

I'm anxious to hear about the cave tours. My wife and I really like doing caves. We did 4 tours at Carlsbad Caverns in New Mexico and some day will be getting to Kentucky.

I tried Ball Lines and can see that it could become addictive. Linda might also like Tetris. I see that there is at least one free on-line version.

We've been thinking of getting an inverter like yours to allow us to go off grid more often, but I'm confused after reading your blog the last few days. You seem to run the generator every time you need 110 volts. What gain is there from the invertor?

Hi Howard;

Sox won - Rockies lost :-(


Got my Good Sam magazine HIGHWAYS yesterday with an article on Mammouth Cave. I did not know they had so many tours to choose from. Many years ago I went on one. Plan to get there again one of these days.

2-1 Red Sox, so they go to Colorado with a 2-0 lead. Go Sox!!

Howard, if there is a lot of rain between your dish and the satlite it will block the signal even if it's not raining at your location.



Sorry to confuse you. :)

We run the generator for two reasons.

First and foremost is to re-charge the batteries. And we re-charge when our monitor tells us we have used between 150 and 250 amp hours. We definitely don't want to go over 300 amp hours which is half of our 600 amp hour battery capacity.

The second reason is to run AC appliances that would just drain the batteries too quickly.

So we try to "kill two birds with one stone" and run the coffee maker, the microwave, and the furnace at the same time we need to charge the batteries. That way we are charging batteries AND keeping the high wattage appliances from draining batteries at the same time.

The inverter lets us run all our AC appliances without the generator or an electrical hook-up. So we run our TVs, computers, and other low wattage items with the inverter.

We can run the other heat-producing, high wattage items with the inverter as well, but it would draw down the batteries much faster and we would need to run the generator more often to keep from discharging the batteries past 50 percent capacity.

Basically, the inverter keeps us from having to run the generator constantly just to watch TV or use the computers. And we can do that longer if we use the generator to run the high wattage appliances while we are re-charging.

We could conserve more and run the generator less in a serious "off the grid" situation.

Also, we have to run the generator a little more often than we expected because our inverter only "bulk" charges our batteries down to about a 100 amp hour deficit. At that point, the charging slows down as it goes into stage two charging, and it is not cost effective to use the fuel to run the generator at the slower charge rate.

Yikes. Reading back over that, I think I repeated myself a couple times. But maybe some of it makes sense. :)

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