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Messages - Rainbow-Farm

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Original Lister Cs Engines / The Mystery of Binnie's British Lister
« on: July 20, 2008, 07:54:49 PM »
Binnie has not posted here since he passed away last fall. There is one mystery solved. The family is telling me that he ordered?/paid? a real Lister from England, and it is somewhere?/shipped?/UK?/Canada?... if anyone has any information, I will forward it to the family.



Bio-diesel Fuel / Re: Biodiesel Information
« on: July 19, 2008, 08:46:44 PM »
Oh, boy, has some time passed! There was a medical problem in there. I now have 2 generators running on biodiesel. I have put aside any idea of running the NY place on anything. I don't get there much, and now wonder why I go at all, even though I know why.

We also got 3 Land Cruisers, diesel (never sold in US, but many ended up there), all running on biodiesel.

I still have a pile to do, but things are well on their way. The price of gas forced/caused production of ready-to-burn 2-micron veggie oil and biodiesel from that same veggie oil. I can get it delivered, good price on the storage tank, or I can drive over and pick it up, maybe 10 miles from home.

The times they are indeed a changin'

Bio-diesel Fuel / Re: Biodiesel Information
« on: October 27, 2006, 02:16:22 PM »
Thanks, Bill. I am looking for something to get the biodiesel up into the fuel tank above the engine (for gravity feed).

Although, first I have to make some... still looking for the lye, and still working on getting some spoiled (past expiry date) or used oil.

I have (solar panels and) batteries at my unheated camper... not too good in the cold... heating cost not worth it... just started thinking of running the whole thing on the generator on biodiesel. I could use all the electric heat I want. The propane heater burns my eyes after a day or so, and the electricity is 32 cents down there in winter.

Bio-diesel Fuel / Re: Biodiesel Information
« on: October 27, 2006, 05:37:21 AM »

I was looking at Girl Mark Alovert's water-tank set-up and I noticed that she uses a water pump from Harbor Freight/Northern Tools, on sale right now for $25. I had been looking at fuel pumps for diesel that run to $250.

The 1/2 HP pump from Harbor ... well, if Girl Mark is using it, then I have to presume that it can handle the biodiesel with no issues (material in seals, like rubber, etc.)... do you have any experience with this aspect of it?

For the source of oil, I keep hearing from people who buy vegetable oil that is past its date, for cheap... like for less than the extra cost and bother of used oil. Might be worth checking out (each to his own, as this is all local/regional... gotta find it close to home).

General Discussion / Re: Global Warming mini-rant
« on: October 27, 2006, 05:11:15 AM »
G'day, Ray:

I like what you posted (top post). I avoid (on several important topics) proof (mostly bullshit), scientific evidence (distorted bullshit), and political rhetoric (bullshit piled higher and deeper).

Anyone who cannot see that things have changed on this planet and that things are at a critical point is blind, and as you say, and this was on my mind today, it confronts their sense of security. Don't make me give up anythying.

So... this being the arena that it is, what better thing could "we" do than to burn biodiesel (virtually non-polluting, good for the engine), which is the one thing we all share: an interest in Listers, Listeroids, ChangFas, and the like.

I ranted today elsewhere about the fact that diesel engines are being made obsolete, or rather "illegal"... on a pump in NY I saw a notice that 2007 vehicles cannot use the low-sulfur diesel (illegal, it says, and will harm the engine). VW and others will not release 2007 diesel vehicles.

The vegetable oil engine, one of the best solutions to the problems you post about... is being made "illegal"... the vegetable oil engine is the diesel engine.

Weird, eh?

Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 27, 2006, 04:10:17 AM »
Tugger, for the switch, I will find a way to disconnect from the utility, and there are no children here. There are no stupid people here. There is no one here who wants to go anywhere near a big thing that looks electrical.

The utility/grid will be disconnected. I just want it all to be safe. Legal is secondary.

I have been poring over that SaskPower diagram... now I need to go look up my notes from Coleman about floating neutral and neutral bonded to generator frame.

They say that is what determines 2-pole or 3-pole transfer switch, and it seems that each province has their own set-up vis-a-vis the neutral during a power failure. If I can find a 200-amp 3-pole transfer switch, then I figure all bases are covered: all connections are broken and sent to generator.

Does anyone know whether the ST head is "bound to frame" or "floating neutral"?

Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 27, 2006, 03:28:20 AM »
Well, I started calling local electricians who surely know local code and the practical aspects of a transfer switch.

I have only reached one of the local electricians, and he wants to put in the type of switch that requires pre-selecting circuits. I do not want to do that. I want to transfer the entry, in full. He thinks $300 is expensive for the box with xx circuits... I told him the box I was looking at was $1,200, so that he would know that I understood that... yep, moving 200 amps is moving 200 amps... big stuff.

He did not say I was an asshole lunatic, but he wanted to. The only reason he did not is this a small town and I was referred by a mutual friend. I had looked around and did find the pages about don't stand in a bucket of water with your finger in a socket. This is about as advanced as it gets here. I did refer Mr. Electrician to the Saskatchewan document which contains a clear schematic for a safe whole-system transfer. His reply: we are in Quebec!

You got that right. The backwaters of Quebec.

He said that Hydro Quebec (after people did all kinds of stupid stuff with generators in 1998, The Ice Storm) wants people to submit plans for their generator hook-up, for their approval. He says the electricians do not do that. They just do a safe installation, but he has never heard of a whole-box transfer and is not interested in learning and is not interested in having a peon non-electrician know anything he does not know.

Leaving Quebec, via Internet or motor vehicle, you learn a lot about "other places". Quebec is infamously xenophobic, and I hate experiences like talking to this electrician... so I bought a stove plug and some heavy cable. Frig them all!!!

Everything else / Re: Battery de-sulphater
« on: October 27, 2006, 03:22:07 AM »
I bought about 7 desulfators from Battery Life Saver. I once found a report on the solar panel battery test, probably the same one.

I don't know how to EDTA (chelate) my batteries, and I do not know how the desulfator really works, beyond conceptually. I do not know sheeet about sulfur crystals except that the sulfuric acid contacting the lead plate makes electricity.

So, I used the desulfator on sealed lead-acid batteries, on my car, and on some deep-cycle solar-system batteries, and I noticed an improvement. Six of them went to friends. No one has commented. One used it on his deep-cycle batteries, but they are already in perfect condition.

I am not interested in joining the argument, since I have just said everything I know about this, and I doubt my car's battery would have made it to the end of the lease next year. Why should I buy a new battery to give back to the car dealer when I get to keep the desulfator?

My car's battery was draining too quickly and it no longer does that after a week with the desulfator on it. I had my reasons for choosing Battery Life Saver over the other brands, which does not mean the other brands are not good.

Soon enough, they will be for sale at Canadian Tire, just like the electronic rust thingie, and more people will buy them, like them, blah, blah.

And... what is wrong with free batteries? Somebody wants to throw away their battery? Put the desulfator on it. Get a free battery. Maybe. Depends on the algorithms and all that, I suppose.

Bio-diesel Fuel / Re: cloud point - brrrr
« on: October 22, 2006, 02:41:00 PM »
BioBill and FuddyDuddy:

For 3 short posts, that was highly informative, and so was my journey around the PS (Power Service) site. For heaters, what type of heater goes into a fuel tank? Is there one made for that? Have you adapted something? I am thinking that once running (generator for occasional use), heat is available (either from electric heater run by the gen-set, or from coolant heat from the gen-set). Prior to start-up, there may be no electricity available to heat the fuel.

I am starting to believe tales I have heard of people lighting fires under their engines, to heat the fuel in the tanks.

Odd comparison but, when my wood stove is running, it is "pre-heating" and drying wood that is in the house. To start a fire cold from wood stored outside is slower, more difficult.

I am starting to think of using a portable propane heater to pre-heat an enclosed space with the generator in it (shed, carport, etc.)... just enough to get it up and running.


Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 18, 2006, 01:33:45 PM »

It is a PDF and it is quite good. If you back up the path to /safety/ you may be able to see the files and just download it.

They show a 3-pole set-up where the neutral is switched (or so it seems to me in the diagrams).

Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 12, 2006, 09:55:29 PM »
Procrustes: Looking forward to your update on inspection/arrival/use.

Ontario is the place where code is quoted (often here). Quebec is a few inches away, and a few light-years behind.

My Coleman has the neutral/ground combined, and they have explained to me how to use that set-up (wire it, get it into the house). The new rig, on an ST head, has an independent neutral line. So, the neutral is not bound to the ground, and in Quebec, I do not know if the neutral is rigged the same way as it is in Ontario. I doubt that Hydro Quebec has anyone who can

a) Answer the question.
b) Speak English.

So, I would prefer a 3-pole switch... I would rather disconnect Hydro Quebed than phone them for info. They might capture my number and send a tax auditor, municipal inspector, or whatever... just to be miserable (hey, he speaks English and wants to disconnect US, the Gods of Hydroelectric power).

I do not think I would be using plugs/outlets. I would rather use the whole-house switch.

Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 12, 2006, 04:35:48 PM »
So... (pending the news whether there is a box with 3 poles, one for the neutral), now (recent change, according to the electrician) in Ontario, the neutral is always connected, even when the big old fat main switch is OFF.

In Quebec, where things take about 10 years to catch on, this may not be the case, but I would feel safe having the neutral also switched to the ST head, since it puts out on 3 lines, and one of them is neutral.

Turn OFF the grid, might as well turn all of it off... a complete disconnect... seems to make sense to me.

So, if the switches do not come with the 3rd pole, what is the solution/workaround?

Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 12, 2006, 04:00:10 PM »
Cutler-Hammer ... distributed in Canada by who have one page for all transfer switches, and have no details except distributor names and phone numbers. The local distributor knows zip about the products and cannot find that box by its model number: DT224URK-NPS, which may be for US only (took the model # from Harbor Freight).

So... I asked the distributor to look for any 200-amp transfer switch, whether they have them in stock or not, what prices... then maybe I can go look at the thing. If it is sold here, it would (probably, maybe, likely, who knows?) conform to code.

Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 12, 2006, 03:49:04 PM »
Yes, $299.99 on Harbor Freight, but no inside pic or specs.

Procrustes, it seems you ordered one. Do you have any comments or observations, or ideas on how to "include" the neutral in the switch?

I need exactly this... 200 amps, manual. It may not be code in Quebec, and to get one that is "code"... well, $1,200.

Generators / Re: Transfer switch rant
« on: October 12, 2006, 02:34:41 AM »
In Canada, 100-amp, $1000.00

200 amp, $1,200

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