Monday, 14 December 2015

By on December 14th, 2015 in prepping, relocation

10:37 – Yesterday, for only the second or third time since I started keeping this journal about 20 years ago, I forgot to post an entry. We have so much going on here that it just slipped my mind. We still have boxes and bins stacked all over the place, and a lot of sorting/organizing left to do.

One of my concerns about this new place is the water supply. We have a well, which is fine as long as we have electricity to power the pump. Without electricity, we’d need to depend on rainwater harvesting. Fortunately, that doesn’t look like it’d be much of a problem. We have about 2,000 square feet of roof space. The downspouts connect to tubing that carries the rainwater off to the perimeter of the property, but it’d be easy enough to intercept it and capture it. All we’d need then to have a decent supply of potable water is a pre-filter, which I have all the components for, and the Sawyer PointZeroTwo filter, which I can get setup quickly. Sparta averages about four inches of rain a month, generally pretty well distributed over the month, which translates to about 5,000 gallons a month if we capture all of it. That’s 150+ gallons per day, which is sufficient even for bathing, laundry, and flushing toilets.

So, at this point, if necessary we can be completely self-sufficient. We can eat, drink, stay warm, and defend ourselves for months, and we have enough spare to provide for family and a few friends for at least a few months. We’re living in a small town in the Blue Ridge Mountains, a good way from the big cities. That’s about as good as it gets on the East Coast. I’ll never be completely satisfied with our level of preparation, but at least we’re now at a comfortable level.

As I’ve said over and over, I don’t really expect things to go completely to shit, at least not for years, but I’ve been wrong before. And if TS does HTF, we’re at least in a position to ride it out. What I do expect is a continuing slide into dystopia, and as that happens we’ll have time to make further preparations.

61 Comments and discussion on "Monday, 14 December 2015"

  1. OFD says:

    ” What I do expect is a continuing slide into dystopia, and as that happens we’ll have time to make further preparations.”

    And let’s all hope that’s the worst-case scenario.

    Congrats again on getting out of Dodge. Peace of mind counts for a LOT.

  2. pcb_duffer says:

    Would it be feasible, in your water harvesting scenario, to segregate the water supplies before filtration? Say one untreated reserve for the toilets, one pre-filtered for the laundry, and the water that’s been through the Sawyer PointZeroTwo exclusively for cooking & bathing?

  3. brad says:

    Apropos of nothing: printer frustrations. The last HP we bought has just never worked right on anything complicated. For example, if you want to print booklets (2-pages per side, double sided), no matter how you tweak the settings, the back two pages are upside down. I suspect it’s changing the duplex option twice, once in the driver and once in the printer.

    We had a brother – commercial inkjet – that leaked ink all over the room. What a mess.

    We has some other brand, don’t remember off hand what, that had a “used toner container” that filled up weekly – what a fricking (and expensive) waste of toner.

    Our latest attempt – carefully selected after lots of research – is a Samsung. Only, if you send it simple pages that it can print at maximum speed, it trips over its own feet and jams up the paper. Every stinkin’ time.

    This is for a business, and the time lost fighting with stupid printer problems is real money. So, even though we don’t actually print more than a few hundred pages a month, I’m think we’re going to have to buy an “enterprise” grade printer with a service contract. At least then we can yell at the service technician if things don’t work.

  4. OFD says:

    If I ran a biz of enough size to have to rely on a printer working reliably, yeah, I’d go for the heavyweight machine and let a tech deal with the service headaches, assuming you get techs that will come out and do that gig reliably, too. It may be worth it to dump the headaches it’s causing you and the rest of the folks there. I’d also make it a laser rather than inkjet and keep the associated supplies on hand that y’all can replace without a tech.

    A gig I worked a few years ago down in Woostah, MA had two upper-level HP printers the size of bedroom dressers that would print out many thousands of pages each month (financial and insurance biz, Winblows-centric, family-owned flustercluck) without causing problems. Those buggers were actually a pleasure to start up and run.

    Our old HP Deskjet workhorse that we got for $50 here at home has finally crapped out on us after at least five years of fairly consistent use, with just a few minor glitches here and there that were easily fixed by us. So now I’m gonna hook up the Brother and see what happens.

  5. DadCooks says:

    @brad – have you looked at printers at your local Costco (home and small bussines) or Costco Online (home, small, and big business)? Advantages: (1) Costco carries a limited selection of only the better/best (IMHO) of a particular brand and (2) easy return and some level of support with Costco’s Concierge Support. I have personally only bought printers from Costco for over 25 years now and have only had to return one that died within a month.

    I second the suggestion by @OFD to consider a heavy duty machine on a full service lease from a local company.

  6. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    segregate the water supplies before filtration

    Yep, that’s what we’d do. I’d always keep a one-month supply of potable water on hand for each person (call it 100 gallons/person), and use water that had been only pre-filtered for toilet flushing.

  7. Ray Thompson says:

    I’m think we’re going to have to buy an “enterprise” grade printer with a service contract

    We have a Konica/Minolta printer, copier, scanner, and fax with duplexing and network connection. I think the organization paid about $8K for the printer. Service contract is $75 a month and includes the cost of the toner (color and B/W). Have had the printer about four years and few problems. If we do the tech usually comes the next day and resolves the issues.

    The printer also communicates with a small piece of software on the server. When consumables run low the printer informs the software which then informs the place where we bought the printer. In a couple of days the replacement consumable arrives.

    Scanning is super quick, 60+ pages a minute, basically as fast as it can copy it can scan. The scanned pages are stored on a server.

  8. MrAtoz says:

    We have a Konica/Minolta printer, copier, scanner, and fax with duplexing and network connection. I think the organization paid about $8K for the printer.

    That’s a great deal. We used to have a Tectronix (sp) from freecolorprinters for free as long as we printed a certain amount a month and bought toner from them. Back when we were printing our course materials. It paid for itself. These days we have enough biz we farm it out to a big printer for JIT.

  9. MrAtoz says:

    ISIS is doing Margaret Sanger proud.

    ISIS have issued a fatwa which orders children with Down’s syndrome and other disabilities to be killed in a chilling echo to the workings of the Nazis, it is claimed.

    Meanwhile, Obola wants to investigate “hover boards”, golf, smoke ciggies and Ejaculate all over the Climate.

  10. MrAtoz says:

    So far this year we’ve paid our consultants (run MrsAtoz’s programs) $315,000. According to Ofukstik, small businesses don’t create jobs. We’ll also pay enough in income tax this year to provide a good chunk of the incoming Syrian terrorists a rich welfare lifestyle. How many of the incoming terrorists will actually be gainfully employed. 1% maybe.

  11. JimL says:

    RE: Printers.

    I’m a BIG fan of the older HP printers. I recently (2 years ago) acquired a Color LJ5500 for free, and needed repair parts. A $200 purchase on eBay for an identical unit got me one functioning color laser. Networking, duplex, 11×17. Cartridges are $200/set, which is a pretty good bargain. The thing runs thousands of pages/month. I’ll take it and its brethren (the LJ8000, 8100, 9000, etc.) any day over the modern garbage HP is putting out. And the prices (used) are so low as to make the purchase a no-brainer. Repair parts are similarly low-cost, and every part is swap-out.

    IF you have a mechanical bent, and are willing to put up with the initial hassle, such a printer will keep you happy for years.

  12. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    The last time I bought an HP printer, it was the LaserJet 5P. We currently have a Brother 5250DN mono laser and a Brother 3070CW color laser. I’m pleased with both.

  13. OFD says:

    “We’ll also pay enough in income tax this year to provide a good chunk of the incoming Syrian terrorists a rich welfare lifestyle.”

    Congratulations, sir! You are to be commended for reaching out like a good American to these needy people in their masses, coming here, struggling to breathe free, for our freedom and liberty and democratic values….

    …when will you and MrsAtoz be vacating your domicile, as several incoming families will be housed there…? (what’s being done in Germany now; GTFO of your house so hadji scum can live there now…wonder how this would fly here….)

  14. MrAtoz says:

    That’s what the condo is…. Wait, since it is a high rise tower, it will be reserved for welfare queens. I guess it’s bug out to Leavenworth, start growing wild crops in the woods, maybe do some ‘shrooms to pass the time until “it’s all over”.

  15. OFD says:

    Yup, bad call moving to the condo; you’ll be evicted in favor of a family of trans-gendered ex-cons with HIV.

    Also, make sure you can ID the right shrooms for your recreational activities; picking the wrong ones can lead to a really bad trip…just sayin….

  16. ech says:

    Saw an ad today on the Hitler History Channel from Wise food storage. They were offering a 1 month supply of food for 1 person for about $150, plus a 5 day emergency backpack, and a carton of their “fuel source”. All the food seems to be dehydrated/freeze dry stuff and the ads showed it very professionally displayed with garnishes (fresh apples on the oatmeal, herbs on mac & Cheese). The only thing interesting is the fuel source, “Wise Fire”. It looks like vermiculite and rabbit feed. They claim it will burn on top of damp ground or snow. Anyone know what it is? Casual googling was unhelpful.

  17. Rick H says:

    Re printers: I’ve had a Samsung laser printer for years. No problems with it other than the (very) occasional paper jam.

    Now have two Canon wireless laser printers (duplex capable) that work quite well. Not a lot of paper through either one, but they set up quickly (Windows 7/8/10) and print fast. The duplex is a nice feature.

  18. DadCooks says:

    @ech – I have found a trend in the survival food companies that advertise on the TV and radio, you must call the 800 number to get “the deal”. Go to their websites’ and again they try to steer you to the 800 number. Almost impossible to check out the real contents. IMHO the survival food industry has jumped the shark and is now just another flim flam on people too lazy to do even the most minimal amount of research.

  19. ech says:

    @DadCooks Yeah, they are running the TV ads to drive you to their 800 number. The one thing that caught my eye was the fire stuff. As an old Boy Scout, I find high tech ways to start fires interesting. Also, the fact that it looked like vermiculite and rabbit food was funny.

  20. Robert Bruce Thompson says:

    I’d steer clear of Wise. About 99% of our LTS food that’s not from the LDS Home Storage Center or the supermarket/Costco/Sam’s is from Augason Farms. I think we’re up to about 5 dozen #10 cans of AF stuff.

  21. MrAtoz says:

    Everyone: Trump is dumb, egotistical, useless, retard*, racist, misogynist.

    National Poll: Trump 41%

    I’m voting for the dumb guy this time around.

    * I’m gonna pay for that term

  22. OFD says:

    I’m either not voting at all in the national election or writing in Pat Buchanan’s name again.

    Other than that, I’m a local yokel.

  23. MrAtoz says:

    US Army: We’re gonna court martial Bergdahl.

    Obola: zzzz. Huh. He’s a hero ’cause I said so.

    Odds of Ofukstik pardoning him…100% It’s about the legacy, you see. Unless he’s already got rid of anybody who would convict him.

  24. MrAtoz says:

    Oh, yeah, Obola’s FAA says any hobby drone over 8oz must be registered by Feb 19. It’s free till then, $5 after. That covers 99% of toy drones. It’s not clear if that includes every R/C toy or just copters. What…a…joke. How can the FAA just tax you without Congressional approval? Call it a license and what? it’s good to go. Somebody sue please.

  25. MrAtoz says:

    I’m sure all the toy drone makers will bend over and take Obola’s rainbow shaft up the butt.

  26. OFD says:

    They’ll have us registering and paying fees for pencils and pens, hearing aids, and erection vacuum pumps pretty soon.

    As RBT and I have said many times on here; they can do whatever they want, regardless of their own laws, regulations and ordinances. And they do.

  27. dkreck says:

    They’ll get my pump when they pry it from my cold dead…

  28. Lynn says:

    One of my concerns about this new place is the water supply. We have a well, which is fine as long as we have electricity to power the pump.

    And, the water well pump is below the water table. Cost me $9,800 to find that out.

    When the water table drops below the pump, the pump just runs continuously while heating up until the PVC well shaft melts, trapping the pump in the shaft. Then you contact the well drillers about a new well. My new well is just 12 foot away from the old well but it is 80 foot deeper (240 ft well and the pump is down 160 ft in the third sand layer).

  29. OFD says:

    Along with James Woods, Kurt Russell is evidently another Hollywood guy who strays off the res quite a lot:

    “It’s great when an actor will put a reporter in their place when it comes to reality. That’s just not something you see every day. Thanks Kurt!”

    Kiss your career out there buy-bye, Kurt. You forgot about the glories of GroupThink and the fun weeknights of the One-Minute-Hates against “those people out there clinging bitterly to the their guns and their religion…”

    We gotta find out how deep our well is; I think about 140 feet, but I’d like more info before committing to an alternative pump solution for when the juice cuts out.

  30. nick says:

    Well WRT drone fees, the RIAA managed to get a surcharge added to blank CDs for recording music, and people bought them.

    So the FAA will say “pay us” and folks will.


    (yeah, ‘drone’ is nothing but an RC aircraft, like for oh, the last 50+years, but they got a good agent.)

  31. nick says:

    So today was not the day the financial system implodes. Cool. more time to stack.

    So anyone else see the article: Cops Find BURIED EXPLOSIVES in Mid-Missouri – Before Mysterious Cell Phone Purchases Were Made

    Their explosive stash got found, so they needed the propane tanks to go with the cell phone detonators..

    Eyes wide open….


  32. OFD says:

    Yeah, I never saw what the BFD was for home-based drones; pretty much the same as RC planes and choppers that have been around for decades. So the armed forces built up some bigger ones and put Hellfires on ’em; whoopee, it ain’t rocket science. Then they put “pilots” in underground bunkers and give ’em medals and treat ’em for PTSD.

    I live for the day that the Fed gummint gets downsized to almost nothing somehow.

    “Their explosive stash got found, so they needed the propane tanks to go with the cell phone detonators..”

    And that’s just one stash they’ve found. How many others out there?

    Imaginary Scenario again: in several areas of the country, platoon-sized groups of hadjis hook up with hadji cells already here for years, thanks to our joke of a southern border and ultra-lax security. The cells get them vehicles, explosives, ammo, cash, and targets. Half a dozen such hadji platoons hit major North Murkan cities like they hit Paris, aiming for shopping malls during the Holiday Season formerly known as Christmas. Also sporting events, concerts, and other crowded venues. They wreak utter havoc and local LE can’t keep up or cope with it. Armed citizens begin responding with their own firearms in a couple of the locations and the Feds roll in with martial law. Naturally they begin rounding up the citizens and confiscating their firearms. And then the real fun begins…

  33. Ray Thompson says:

    Half a dozen such hadji platoons hit major North Murkan cities like they hit Paris

    Better yet is for a suicidal bomber to enter a large airport, such as Atlanta, and detonate their backpack while waiting in the security line. Massive amounts of people all crammed tightly together. Synchronized events in multiple major airports at say 16:00 EST on Friday. The carnage would be massive. Airports shutdown for days if not weeks for repairs. Travel totally disrupted for an extended period of time.

  34. DadCooks says:

    Soon the only people to have drones will be the neerdowells and felons.

    Government Regulations: screw the common law abiding citizen. Rinse and repeat.

    Just wait until Obola issues his next Executive Order requiring FAA registration of each and every bullet (they “fly” don’t they?), it will probably be $5.00 per bullet. Mark my word.

  35. JimL says:

    What drone? What bullets?

    I don’t have any, and I don’t plan to get any, either.

  36. nick says:


    Based on your experience in SEA, what would you think of an anti-helo device that consisted of an air cannon (potato gun), a projectile, and 50 ft of stainless steel cable?

    I’m thinking that after the first time or two, the helos would have to stand off a lot further.


    just thinkin’

  37. Ray Thompson says:

    50 ft of stainless steel cable

    Fishing line would be just as effective, lighter, and cheaper.

  38. nick says:

    Now that she’s gotten her way, with a million savage invaders:

    Angela Merkel describes multiculturalism as ‘a living lie’ as she promises to ‘significantly reduce’ the number of migrants entering Germany

    Angela Merkel faces plunging poll numbers and rising violence in Germany
    But she launched a passionate defence of her migrant open door policy
    The German Chancellor promised to reduce numbers entering the country
    If they were not she warned the country would eventually be ‘overwhelmed’
    The 61-year-old also described the concept of multiculturalism as a ‘lie’

    Read more:

    “Angela Merkel yesterday described the concept of multiculturalism as ‘living a lie’ and finally admitted it was time to end the relentless flow of refugees into Europe.

    The German Chancellor confessed her country would be ‘overwhelmed’ unless she took action as the number of asylum-seekers arriving there this year topped one million.

    Since she dramatically opened Germany’s doors to refugees in August, the continent has been besieged with hundreds of thousands of people wanting to get there.

    But ahead of an EU summit on Thursday, she restated her long-term opposition to multi-culturalism, saying: ‘Multi-kulti leads to parallel societies and is a living lie. Integration is the opposite.’

    Note that she just wants to “SLOW” the invasion, and no time line is given.


  39. DadCooks says:

    If this article is true we are in worse shape than I care to imagine:

    Back in my Fast Attack days this would have never happened. Things like this were attempted but repelled with 100% success, there are foreign navy ships and subs that bare our scars and were within moments of being deep-sixed. U.S. Navy Submarine Captains had a lot of power and used to not be afraid to use it.

    A forward deployed Carrier, like the USS Regan was, would have had a 360° Fast Attack screen. Yes that takes more than one Fast Attack, sorry I cannot tell you how many that is at a minimum as that is “need to know”.

    Now I see on Fox News that some sort of threat in L.A. has now closed down their whole school system.

    Tubes loaded, doors open.

  40. Miles_Teg says:

    If Tom Clancy’s SSN was accurate I would have assumed two subs were needed – one at the front, one at the back. Ideally three and three might have been best, but they never had enough.

    BTW, in an exercise, an Australian sub of the Collins class got through the screen and took some closeups of an American carrier. Could have sent it to the bottom I heard.

  41. DadCooks says:

    @Miles_Teg – Clancy’s fiction is more fact than many people believe.

    One only has to look at the publicly available ships in port to see that we not only do not have enough ships deployed, but what are are not properly protected by sub or surface craft.

  42. Clayton W. says:

    LOTS of stories of Submarines breaching the screen when I was in. I did an op against a Ticonderoga cruiser while I was on a Boomer (target of opportunity for the Tico’s work-up) and we smoked them. Great photo of the Skipper of the Tico looking aft from the flying bridge. You can’t go active all the time and a sub can be quite quiet if they don’t have to sprint.

  43. OFD says:

    “Soon the only people to have drones will be the neerdowells and felons.”

    Like MrAtoz and some other haters on here.

    “Based on your experience in SEA, what would you think of an anti-helo device that consisted of an air cannon (potato gun), a projectile, and 50 ft of stainless steel cable?”

    OFD thinks that A: few people outside this board would even have the tech chops to put together such a caper, and B: simple rifles like Charlie and his little commie buddies had work very nicely for that. Oh, and C: the helos are very likely to have guys like me sitting in the breezeway manning (or, hell, nowadays, womaning) a large-caliber machine gun while the crew chief runs mini-guns and/or rockets. This is hell on potato-gun shooters.

    Hats off for you submariners; I couldn’t do that gig, too claustrophobic and too tall. I like to see all around me and have escape routes all the time. Another one of my many failings. You guys rock.

  44. nick says:

    No flash, no bang, not so easy to see, cheap, unregulated…


  45. OFD says:

    I hear ya, but too much time and effort when a crappy old AK will do the trick. I would mos def not want to be in the position of shooting fishing line or wire or whatever at armed chopper gunship rotor blades from the ground. Esp. if MrAtoz was piloting.

  46. Roy Harvey says:

    We have a well, which is fine as long as we have electricity to power the pump.

    We have a well, and when we sere without power for several days we had a generator. (I have a great son-in-law.) What I did not have was the correct plug for 220V from the generator, so we could run the furnace but not the well pump. It’s the little things that get you.

    Afterward I bought the correct plug and built my own extension cord. It had to be long enough so that the generator doesn’t end up too close to the house. I made mine out of plain old romex. Solid-wire conductors isn’t what anyone would choose for a regular extension. For this it is ideal; the end at the pump is bare wires going under screws in place of the romex that is wired from the panel, and I hate putting stranded wire under screws. And there is no question that the wire can handle the load.

    For the furnace, which is 120V, I opened the box and wired in the end of what used to be the power cord of a nice UPS, good quality stuff. Then it was just a matter of using a regular three-prong extension cord.

  47. OFD says:

    I’d be looking for an alternative well pump solution that is good for more than a few days or weeks via generator, like, permanent, if need be.

    Overcast with rain showers today; temps still in the 40s. Working on inside stuff for now, mainly organizing the office and future attic workshop in lieu of fixing things in the bathroom. Which would mean, with two such things, shutting off the juice to that part of the house for hours, most likely. I think I’ll do it when Mrs. OFD is home for the next month or so, in case I get zapped and keel over.

    The LA skool system shutdown is a major major enterprise and affects millions of peeps out there; I’m guessing it was done by somebody or other to gauge the response and impact for future reference.

    And I’m kinda concerned about the ongoing Holiday Season formerly known as Christmas; simultaneous Paris- or San Berdoo-level attacks would knock this country for a loop.

  48. Rick H says:

    Regarding generators: I am getting a slightly used one this week (from a friend, at under retail). Initially I will use it for wind-caused power outages (happens 2-3 times year here on the OlyPen), with heavy-duty extension cords for the fridge, freezer, and my CPAP (I don’t sleep well without the CPAP).

    I got a circuit tracer from Harbor Frieght (here for $19.00) to identify the circuits at the main panel. I’ll then get a 30 amp manual transfer switch and wire several circuits through the transfer switch (I’m thinking fridge, freezer, and the DirectTV/TV, plus bedroom).

    With that in place, I’ll be able to fire up the generator, connect to the transfer switch, flip the transfer switch to isolate the main (so I don’t feed back into the power grid), and I’ll be OK for the next power outage.

    With a couple of battery-powered LED camp lights, plus other FLASHLIGHTS , and the propane fireplace (which may also get connected to the transfer switch to power the fan for better heat), I figure we’ll be in good shape for a power outage. Around here, they last under 12 hours (the last two were about 8 hours), so a couple of five-gallon cans of gas will keep things working until the power is restored.

  49. Roy Harvey says:

    Initially I will use it for wind-caused power outages (happens 2-3 times year here on the OlyPen), with heavy-duty extension cords for the fridge, freezer, and my CPAP (I don’t sleep well without the CPAP).

    My wife’s CPAP looks to me to have a bunch of delicate electronics. Some generators put out very dirty power that can do bad things to electronics. Generators that put out clean power cost a bunch more, or put out a lot less. I believe the key is using an power inverter, either as part of the generator or as an add-on.

  50. nick says:

    Most simple generators are so dirty that UPSs won’t charge. They see the incoming power as so bad, they need to stay on battery.

    This is one of the unexpected gotchas that only using your preps will reveal.


    (my solution was to get a big surplus UPS that has a switch on it for “generator” which will allow it to charge on dirty power.)

  51. brad says:

    Generators put out dirty power? My EE days are long ago, but…why should that be? Generating AC using a rotating coil “ought” to generate a pure, clean sine wave, or so my faulty memory tells me. Granted, the one course I had on power generation concerned itself with 3-phase, so maybe generating single-phase power is different.

  52. Dave says:


    For one thing if the speed of the generator varies then the frequency of the AC output would vary. Also as I recall, a three phase AC generator would be more efficient than a single phase AC generator. Taking the output of a three phase AC generator, converting it to DC and then back to AC is actually more efficient and can produce higher quality output.

  53. JimL says:

    My Honda generator (i2000, I believe) cost $1000 new and replace a 3500 watt Coleman that cost $250. The difference is in the inverter. The Coleman ran at constant speed and “approximated” 60 Hz by some means. It also went through the 1 gallon tank in about 2 hours. The Honda, on the other hand, runs at variable speed (I can turn the gas save “on” and RPMs drop significantly) and will run for 6+ hours on one tank (1 gallon) of gas. The gas savings have NOT paid for the unit, but the reliability (it always starts & runs quietly, and I can always get through a race on 1 tank) make it worthwhile.

    One of the side benefits is that the UPS I use for some of my equipment would not run on the Coleman, but will run on the Honda. This fits in with what Nick says about the quality of the output. I am not an EE, but I know enough about the equipment to know that a good quality generator can make all the difference.

    Side benefit – the weekend gig also counts as a prep, as I have to keep that equipment running to keep the races going.

  54. nick says:

    I put a scope meter on mine some time ago, and it showed freq variation, amplitude variation, and lots of spikes and dropouts in the wave form. Noise from the ignition is getting in there too, along with the variation caused by changes in motor speed under load, or if it misfires.

    It’s not surprising really, when they are built to such a low price point. You get profit for the reseller, the manufacturer, shipping cost, then a big coil of copper and some electronics, and a lump of iron or aluminum in the engine. Those last few probably get less money spent on them than you might imagine.

    From a practical standpoint, most portable generators are built to run universal motors (power tools) on a job site. They are quite a bit cheaper than the equivalent power rating for something designed to run as prime or backup power. Price RV generators some time. Holy cow. This results in not very clean or consistent power for electronics. Some electronics are smart enough to not run (to protect themselves) but most will be damaged in some way. After running on geni power for 14 days during Ike, we had a number of early failures that probably were the result of running on dirty power damaging components, most notably the main board in our fridge.

    And I learned the UPS thing.


  55. DadCooks says:

    IIRC, most consumer grade generators are just that “generators” that produce DC which is then run through an inverter (of highly variable quality, even in well known brand names) to get AC. As inverters have been discussed before on here, not all are created alike and again consumer grade is a crap shoot.

    For those of you that use a CPAP machine (I have for over 20-years), I recommend that you look at a CPAP that can run off a battery pack. The links below provide some information. I have done business with them for 15-years and have received good service. Watch for sales and “deals” as CPAP machines have really gone up in price since Obola-No-Care went into effect.

  56. Miles_Teg says:

    What about getting a motor generator set to smooth/convert the power?

  57. Lynn says:

    What about getting a motor generator set to smooth/convert the power?

    We used to use direct coupled motor generator sets to convert our 240 V DC battery banks to 480 V 3 phase AC which fed into our 480 V 3 phase bus. We ran them continuously which required the brushes on the DC motor to be replaced twice per year. I cannot remember the motor size but I think it was 400 hp. Over 1,000 12 V batteries.

  58. nick says:

    this is also commonly used to generate 3 phase power to use commercial tools at home, called a rotary phase converter.

    Big enough flywheel would help, and in fact there are companies that produce flywheel storage for just that purpose.

    In the end, we buy what’s in the stores and affordable. And the gensets that are in stores generally produce nasty dirty power.


  59. DadCooks says:

    On submarines motor generators are used to power the vital busses from the batteries and of course reversed to charge the batteries. Yes, there is the regular maintenance of the brushes as well as the commutator on the DC end (wears faster than the slip rings on the AC end) to deal with.

    Ref. commutatot:
    Ref. slip rings:

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