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Old 09-01-2015, 09:14 PM   #29
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Coffee!!!!

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Originally Posted by elkski View Post
System works well. Coffee maker draws 90 amps. Sucks up 7% of my 120 ahr. For 4 cups. System recharged from 88% to 100% by 1 pm the other day. Sunrise at 7 am.
Ah, the things we do for our drug of choice. Don't get me wrong, many of my mornings have been rendered more bearable by a good cup of Joe, but designing a PV system around my habit is an economically questionable proposition. To each his own; but my alternative is the coffee maker that I use every weekend at home, a Bialetti Moka Express. The Bialetti makes as close to a cup of espresso as you're likely to find without an espresso machine. The 6 cup (espresso shots) model makes about one large mug of super strong coffee, but cutting it by half, Americano style, yields two full mugs of still strong coffee. The biggest plus is that the Moka Express does best when you make it go as slow as it can. A low gas flame is about perfect and uses virtually no propane.
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Old 09-06-2015, 02:34 PM   #30
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I am thinking 90 amps may be a bit to much amperage for my one 120 ahr battery. Im not into fancy drinks just old joe. I guess I need a backup plan for when I get behind in energy. Is there a low energy coffee maker thread? I guess going to gas is what it would take as the energy to boil 4 cups of water is not going to change. My issue with the old perk is that I can to adjust the flame down several times during the brew which sometimes means jumping back down off the camper bed when I hear it perking to fast ( meaning it was going to be grounds in my coffee). Plus my stove burner adjustment is kinda touch and goes off easily at low flame settings and the knob isn't very linear.
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Old 09-06-2015, 04:03 PM   #31
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You are drawing 90 amps for 5 minutes, maybe.

That 7.5 AH from your 120 AH battery. You should be able to do that at least 5 times before running your battery down to 50%.

The math is not exact because at higher the 20 amp draw, ( the current batteries are rated at ), they discharge faster.

I watch 4 or 5 hours of satellite TV before bed and still make coffee twice in the morning, with my 700 watt 4 cup maker. I have about 300 AH of batteries.
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Old 09-06-2015, 09:25 PM   #32
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I've found the trick to getting the flame heat low enough is to put the pot on the burner in an offset manner so that only a portion of the flame is under the pot.
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Old 10-02-2015, 10:21 AM   #33
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Ok so I had my first hickup with my new inverter system.
Yesterday I plugged into shore power to cool the fridge on AC. I have to turn on my Inverter as it acts as a pass through for the AC. But during the night the GFCI outlet breaker blew(may be related to rain and a battery charger I had off but plugged in). anyway as expected the inverter switched to inverting and providing power to the fridge. in one night I went from 96% to 68%. This could be a serious problem as in draining my battery down to the low set point.
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Old 10-02-2015, 06:43 PM   #34
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I cured that problem with a voltage sensing relay that controls an AC relay.


A "Yandina" battery combiner will only combine if it sees 13.5 volts. I use one side of that to close a 12 volt coil, 120 volt relay.


When on shore power, engine running or "enough" solar output, the combiner closes the relay and lets power to the AC side of the fridge. Less then 13.5 volts and it opens the contacts and switch's to gas.
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Old 10-03-2015, 01:54 PM   #35
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That sounds good. But I dont think my 93 dominic and switch to gas automatically. IT has a know from 12v to gas to elec and for gas I think have to push in a light button for a couple seconds. I can see it being handy to maybe power the fridge on AC for an emergency if I ran out of gas or on a really hot day. I have rarely ever had shore power go off on me like that. I normally dont plug into that GFCI outlet.
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Old 10-18-2015, 09:38 AM   #36
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Update!
I dont think my 1000 watt inverter and one 115 ahr battery is going to be able to run my black and decker drip coffee maker.

Latest test results weren't good.
Brewing 4 cups was working ok and using up about 8% of battery capacity according to my trimetric. it was drawing near 90 amps. I did ask if that is to much current draw for a 115 ahr battery? is there a rule of thumb like 1XC rating?

Anyway I had a guess and was going for 6 cups but the inverter hits low battery voltage of 10.5 and shuts off about at 4 cups. IT was probably 30 f outside temp. I tried for 4 cups the next day starting with 94% ( I was at 100% at end of previous day but it was at 94%) it barely made it close to 4 cups before it hit 10.5v and shut down. IT starts warning at 11.3v. these numbers are firm in the Kasai. I watched the voltage on the tri and it lagged the inverter readout by .1-.2 volts on the high side. Man the voltage really dropped off more rapidly as it got lower. for sure not a straight line.

I am loving my solar and even with the coffee I was getting fully charged in full sun days this time of year.
I am wondering what I am going to use the 1000 w inverter for?
Maybe I will go french press. Maybe use a heat stick that draws a lower amperage but I figure the energy usage is relative to starting water temp and volume and cant change. But a lower amp draw may be easier on the battery? This way I use solar and not propane. OR find a lower amp draw drip coffee maker?

I did use the old perky coffee maker and what a long time that is and a PITA.
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Old 10-18-2015, 12:55 PM   #37
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I guess there is an edit timeout? I had a guest.
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Old 01-03-2016, 02:32 PM   #38
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Lance solar

I used three contact points on rack ran metal flat strap to vent cover screws for forth contact mounted panel to rack. No new holes. Ran wires down refrig top across water tank to under sink area. Add a 2 md or 3 rd battery in boxes on sides of bed in frond of fender wells use Anderson power Pole plugs 70 or 80 amp r great size to unplug plug. When loading camper. Don't let one battery be a issue
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Old 05-11-2016, 10:50 AM   #39
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Awful Lot of $$ for Coffee

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy a great cup of coffee in the morning and prefer it to come from a drip coffee maker. After experimenting in my Outfitter Apex 8 with coffee presses and other messy, bad tasting alternatives I have two great alternatives. The Coleman Drip Coffee Maker -- about $31 at Wally World (or Target) it is a true drip coffee maker designed for a propane stove top - no electricity necessary. It uses standard basket type filters or do like I did and buy the re-usable gold mesh filter. It will brew up to 10 cups at a time, has a shut-off for sneaking that early cup out before completing the entire 10 cups and uses a standard carafe. This thing has worked great for the 3 years I've owned it - when we camp with others, they always wait for the full 10 cup carafe to come out of our camper in the morning.

That said - we looked for a smaller alternative for our quick weekend desert trips when it's just the SO and I. What we found is also as brilliant as the Coleman Drip but on a smaller, lighter scale. Also at Wally World I purchased a Presto MyJo Single Cup Brewer. This little gem accepts a K-Cup (think Keurig) or comes with a re-usable, re-fillable K-Cup that you put in the bottom. Then fill the top with hot water (from the stove), put the rubber pump lid on and place the whole thing over a cup and slowly push the pump top with the palm of your hand. Presto -- a single cup of coffee from a K-Cup. We throw a half dozen K-Cups in the drawer for a weekend in the desert and Presto. No electricity necessary. Full disclaimer --- the Presto takes some getting used to as you need to pump slower than you'd think and it works best when pumped slowly.

These two solutions for coffee have worked fantastically in the Outfitter. Even though I have lots of power from my two Trojan T-105's fed by my Kyocera 130W panel, we don't use it for coffee. Years of living off the grid in Mexico and years of designing and installing off-grid solar systems taught me that firing up high-draw appliances first thing in the morning (after your longest dark period drawing off the batteries) is NOT what you want to do if you want uninterrupted power off-grid.

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2006 Dodge RAM 2500 Laramie MegaCab
2006 Outfitter Apex 8
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