Fall. PC rebuild, colder weather solar metrics

8 weeks to go until we are out of here, and I bet it’ll go quickly. KC is asking for remote work or putting in her two weeks this week. Momma and Mike came down Saturday, it was nice to see them.

Kasey had finally gotten the strep I had some weeks later and she’s been off and on this past week, period on top of all of it too. We’ve annoyed each other here and there, which is understandable.

I’m so looking forward to being out of Indianapolis. I went down to the gas station yesterday and a homeless man was very loudly pandering to me..I usually buy a sandwich or something rather for the gentlemen out there, but not when I’m being practically yelled at. I think it’s hard for an empath especially because like, you don’t want to ignore their existence, but you don’t want to get wrapped up and taken advantage of, either, which has happened to me several times in my life.

I’ve leaned more into giving a moment and saying “god bless” as I continue walking, then using COVID as an excuse not to contact further. I almost said I’d need a new excuse eventually, but soon I just won’t be in this shitty city and I won’t have to worry about it. Thank fucking god. Well, until I travel. Portland is mindblowingly bad.

I’ve been doing much better saving money this past month, I really challenged myself to save as much as I can and not give in to whatever that weird trauma is that made me uncomfortable having money in my bank account. Really, no joke. I don’t quite understand it, but I’ve felt uncomfortable having money.

I’ve managed to take that discomfort and enjoy it in some way, I think it’s especially knowing that I’ll be an astronaut soon, traveling in my little lifeboat. Can’t have a breakdown and be fucked, you know?

It’s now a few days later, I have a small footprint PC case coming with a new generation AMD build 😂

silverstone alta g1m

Most critically, and the whole point, it will fit in the RV! I got lucky, it’s the footprint of an ITX, but somehow fits a mATX, 360 radiator, and practically any size GPU. There’s not many interesting mATX cases out there..

AM5 Motherboard pricing FUCKING SUCKS, however, while the 7950X isn’t that bad and DDR5 has dropped price, finally. I’m not sure what to make of the 40 series Nvidia launch, lots of drama and the market is flooded with 30 series. I think we may see initial scarcity and panicking, scalping, then a quick restock and availability. Nvidia got fucked and must commit to their 40 series chip production through TSMC while they are already flooded in 30 series.

I wouldn’t run it past them to artificially choke supply to artificially raise pricing, just as they were doing with mining sales. I also see pricing dropping sooner than later; the initial sticker shock to capture some revenue. Could be wrong, they are already fucking us over with the 4080 drama.

Fingers crossed AM5 sticks with us for the next 3-5 years and there’s a good upgrade path.

Switching gears..

Past 12 hours

Heat Pump metrics are in for fall electrical heating, off grid. Here’s the bigger picture:

Past 24 hours

It was 58F starting at around 9PM and my solar production was over at 7pm (sunset).

I can produce 2.6kW at peak and as you can clearly see, my battery storage is very much lacking at 6.7kWh, reaching 20% (and 120V cutoff) by 7-8am. This technically, barely, scrapes by to sunset to runrise, however, we can’t always have perfect weather, clear panels, and daytime is only going to get shorter.

I do have generator backup, and yes, running the heat pump in heat mode consumes more energy (1,130W vs 500-700W cooling), but still far less than a resistive heater for the same heat output.

The fact is, I’ll need to double, triple the battery bank to be comfortable. 20.1kWh feels like a good target, without going completely overboard and consuming all space with batteries.

Thankfully, if I build my own packs, that’s “only” another $2,503.20 in raw cells, round up to three grand for BMS, compression materials, etc. You can’t buy a pre-assembled battery for around that price and capacity for sure.

I would have to store them in the outside accessible storage area, which is not climate controlled. The heat should be fine, however, the cold, no. The BMS will cut off as expected, but we need to be able to charge. I will need to come up with some sort of safe battery cell heating system.

We should be able to harvest somewhere around 17.5kWh daily under current daytime light and such, very rough calculation. No, that doesn’t provide us with multi-day cloudy/dark sky backup at current load, but I have other heating methods that should make that so pretty easily, such as the diesel heater.

In fact, I think the diesel heater is going to end up bring the primary heating source when off grid. It kept me comfortable last winter and diesel is plentiful to come by. There’s also other optimizations, like not running the heat pump at 72F (where I have it set now), closing off the bedroom (where the heat pump is installed), using a heated blanket, etc.

When on-grid, the heat pump is the most economical way to heat the RV for sure, which is very likely the normal state of things. It’s not like we can go boondock for long stretches of time, I think, at least while society keeps it together.

The heat pump can work in temps as high of 140F for cooling and as low as -22F for heating, which is awesome. It’s why I bought this specific, high efficiency model!

I will need to run DC power cables under the RV and to the storage area, boo.

But that’s enough for this blog post for now, happy Tuesday!

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