Friday, September 2, 2016

Casita de las Tres Hermanas taking shape

Update, 4 September, 1152 MDT: got ten vigas up. Here are two more photos, click on any for a better look.



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The portal roof is on for easier setting of the fifteen vigas on the main structure using lumber from Wholesale Timber and Vigas in Bernalillo. Above it that's a transom window designed to bring winter sunlight into the building while shading summer sun. That upper lintel will be integrated into two parallel parapet walls. Yes, it's level but a lousy camera angle queers the pitch.

The only stud wall inside will allow light into the bathroom and water supplies for the toilet and kitchen plus the electric cable will go above the door frame. Notching the portal supports with a chainsaw proved to be demanding but the rafter bays were perfect for the timbers we had milled. The east side post is sitting on a stub wall of adobes: it looks like it's hovering there in the photo. Adobes are 5% semi-stablized with asphalt emulsion from New Mexico Earth in Albuquerque who delivered two loads for a total of some fifteen hundred thirty-pound bricks.


Yes, this builder looks pretty goddamned good for a geezer.

In the right side of the image is a window bay for a trapezoid Our Lady found at the Santa Fe ReStore: it looks pretty funky from the road and stumps the observer who might have mistaken the structure for an old ruin.

Convincing Our Lady of the Arroyo to move the solar modified sine wave inverter from headquarters to the casita is ongoing. A pure sine wave will add life to the electronics in the main houses. Already modern washing machines and the Bose Wave radio struggle with the square wave inverter. A wind generator is just too noisy but being off the grid is a truly the only way.

More images here and here.

5 comments:

Duffer said...

lot of work there and it looks good. First impression was of a trading-post structure.

Thirty-some years ago I operated/maintained the first U.S. stand-alone photo-voltaic site at Natural Bridges to your NW. 100KW and quite an operation for a project built in the 70's by MIT (Jimmy Carter money). Our equipment was neanderthal in comparison to what is on the market now, but it worked. Of course we had a generator for zinging the storage batteries on schedule but we prided ourselves on managing the operation so that was the only time we used it. I know power-conditioning equipment is on the market, but it would only make sense to find an inverter that did everything for you. You watching Elon Musk and the batteries they're producing? That's the key. He's got his hands in a lot of things.

Collectors abound in California now. Can't build a project in many places there without inclusion. While in Flagstaff this Spring we stopped at Walmart for a few minutes and parked under a collector array they constructed in their parking lot. Folks love to park under them for the shade.

How's the crop? Harvest workers are gathering in NorCal. It's that time!

larry kurtz said...

Hey, Duff: anyone besides us remember when Spearfish High School tried their solar heating experiment?

Photovoltaics are everywhere in New Mexico driving the National Guard outside Santa Fe and powering part of Las Vegas' needs in the Highlands. Tomasita's in Santa Fe has a parking lot where the PV array shades patrons. South Dakota? Crickets power most coal plants and corn cobs still heat most homes and keep livestock tanks from freezing.

The crop is not mature but expected soon.

Always good to read you.

larry kurtz said...

Got some vigas up, take a look!

Duffer said...

looking good!

I doubt net-metering will see the light of day with the GOP PUC here. They're bought/paid for. We don't waste time expecting a different result here, do we?

larry kurtz said...

Honestly, i don't support net metering as long as private companies own the means of generation and transmission but if that is all nationalized net metering makes a ton of sense.