Kiss Ideas. When is KISS too KISS? Or when is a Critic too Critical?

I was thinking about this today, and thought this might be a good example:

Notice how high the eye is above the plastic hole? This extra length acts as a fulcrum, and the amount of force applied to it could eventually break out the plastic hole. This might never happen with a bungy cord, but what if someone attaches a line to it? What if that line gets wrapped around an axle?

We’d likely never have the what Ifs…. if that plastic part was cheap to replace. But if we are concerned, how do we improve on the DIYer design?

tie down

tie down

Now true DIY KISS should cover the majority of our worries, and it need be as SIMPLE as possible.  The rubber piece is a #4 stopper with a hole in it stock, these are bought from Lab supplies, and do come in black. There’s a seller on ebay that sells them by the pound cheap. The ring is a heavy duty key ring, you buy them by the hundred count. The piece the ring is supported by is a hardware store 1/4 by 20 thread ‘connector’ you can make two pieces out of each connector.

The ring is our ‘fuseable link’ With a static 60 pound pull, we are just starting to deform the ring, remove this force and the ring is not damaged, but apply another 5 pounds, and the ring will pull apart and assure your plastic hole is not broken.

I posted this for several reasons, first, I think Polaris is making some amazing products, the new RZR 1000 is close to Alien Technology, and I think these holes they supply will find a dozen uses. I’m thinking of using one hole for a CB antenna. The hole idea? It’s an old idea, older than the expanding drain plugs used in outboard boats.

If you have a Son or Grandson interested in mechanical things, it might be fun to get him interested in designing a handy thing, and attempting to sell same on ebay.  A tiny drill press and a hacksaw could be all your young one needs to start a business.

George B.


Posted in DIYer Skills | Tagged | 2 Comments

12/2 in Ontario for sale 8/28/14

I’ve had email asking about where to get a 12-2 clone, here’s one in Ontario.

Scott Herod

5044 25th sideroad essa L0L2N0, Ontario, Canada

bubbyracing (at)

Cell no.  705*828*3320

As of 8-28-14, this Generator is for sale.

As of 8-28-14, this Generator is for sale.

Posted in Slow Speed Engines | Tagged | 1 Comment

A good Lister 6/1 Clone for sale, and an ST head too.

update:  There’s plenty of interest in this post, and not so good of a job of managing offers to date, (my apologies)   I am now confident that Jan (the widow) is not so interested in crating or shipping, I think she’s plenty busy making a living as many of us are:  One engine and a generator is spoken for, the other one is available for $2100 cash and carry. If you are in the area, or up for a beautiful fall drive, Give Jan a call at the below number.      

I’ve been following the production of clones for a good many years, and I do remember a period of time when production orders where steady, and the errectors were producing better quality. We always expect others to have different opinions, and those who have engines for sale might tell you theirs are simply the best ever.


Above: Engines as they are presently stored in Penn.  See that ST head in the lower left corner?

One of my concerns has always been the intergity of the flywheels, after that is balance issues, as this is harder for the DIYer to address.

The very best 6/1 I have is at Easton, it has started first crank most years after the snow melts, and has been left in the elements for years! This unit I have is from the same lot as the two engines up for sale here in Penn State.

A customer of mine bought them some years ago, and they are still on the pallet bottoms. He has passed away, and now his widow is putting them up for sale.  I think his wife and Son have all the spares that came with them, and since I’d like to see her recover some money through the sale, I have offered to help.

There’s two engines, they are branded Metros, and again.. out of this lot we found excellent runners, and good flywheels.  There’s also an ST head with the name Power Solutions on it, Joel Koch from Portland Oregon ordered these with the utterpower spec, this should mean you’ll find sealed bearings with proper grease, a better rectifier and more.

The Widow, and the Son are reasonable people, they have a way to load the engine and obviously a east coast sale might save somone a LOT of money in shipping charges. If you want it shipped, the owner will re-crate it for a reasonable fee, they will load it free of charge, and they do have a business address, that does make a difference as per shipping rates, but you’ll need arrange shipping from your end.

As I write this, I think about a friend who ordered an engine and got one terrible flywheel, he’s an ME, so he knew it didn’t ring right, and dug the puddy out to find a flywheel he’d never run. The cost of the spare shipped in from India was a rather enormous expense. Attempt to avoid that situation if you can.

Since I’d like to see this Widow as whole as possible on this deal, I will offer parts I have  at cost or less plus shipping, if you need spares.. again, I think they have the spares sent with the engine. Here’s your chance to start out with what might be a best clone..

I’ve told her to ask for $1800 for the engines, and take a best offer. As for the ST, I have found a difference of forty pounds between the best and  the worst. We need verify it doesn’t have a plastic fan. I’m pretty sure none of this lot did, but best to check..

Please spread the word, let’s help one of our deceased DIYer Brother’s Wives, it’s a good thing to do..

Your contact is (Janice Rowles) at 814-236-1342.

I’d appreciate your efforts to share a link of this post with friends, and old engine forums, I’d like to see these engines become runners in the hands of a DIYer. And of course we should all like to see the widow get a square deal.

Do scroll down to comments, there may be additional (more curent) informaton.

All the best GB.


Posted in Engines, Small Diesels, Uncategorized | Tagged | 4 Comments

Comment of the Day 8-8-14, ST12 trouble

Email of the day: Brett asks about field power:

Added Note: 8/22/2014: How hard we sometimes work to deceive ourselves? It took Michael Shermer’s book, ‘The Believing Brain’ to help me understand. For the trouble shooter, it’s such a challenge to start in a logical place, and not take short cuts. Assumptions often deliver you off the tracks, and this post is testament to Shermer’s therory.

The simple ST Head

The simple ST Head

Hi George, Recently purchased an ST12 here on east coast set for 240VAC, the rheostat replaced by an AVR. We are seeing it requires upward 5 horse power 1800 RPM just to create the excite field 80 VDC 6.1 amps. That requires over 3730 Watts just to excite the field before any outside load has been applied. The field measures 17.8 ohms and the stator 4.1 ohms, the rectifier checks good on diode check. We also checked there are no high resistance or shorted windings to ground. The excite field is (80VDC@6.1amps) = 488 watts albeit that does not count for expected reluctance of rotor magnetic lines of force pushing electrons in the stator or the moving the weight of the rotor however 488 watts is a far cry from 3730 watts. With the field disconnected from rectifier ST12 required roughly 560 watts to maintain 1830 RPM. The question being is 5 horse power (3730 watts) a typical load while AC is unloaded or might there be some underlying issue at hand? Thanks for assistance!


My Reply:

Brett, Thanks for your question, this topic will be of interest to many in our DIY-AE community.

For the sake of other readers,  I’ll mention that field current and voltage gives us a good idea  of the power (overhead) we need to provide in order to produce power from our generator stator winding(s). But there are other loads we need consider,  The ST12 has a fairly large fan, and bearings, and I have found grease on a few bearings as thick as plastic at 1800 RPMs, I recommend you assume the worst until you inspect the bearings you have.  The accurate measure of torque at 1800 rpm with the field powered should give you total overhead for the machine, opening the field should show you only the parasitic loads like the Fan, bearing drag, the rotor beating the air, etc.

I had a problem doing accurate comparative tests between machines, and this lead to the creation of my Variable Frequency Drive powered three phase electric motor mounted in bearings, so I could add a strain gauge if desired. The VFD powered motor allows me to DRIVE the generator at exactly 60hz under test AND apply loads and no load from a test box.

With this tool, I can get a fairly good profile of how the generator performs and I have a few generators in the shop I use to create base lines for compares.

With this mention, I need ask, what is your prime mover in your test, and how are you measuring 5hp? WE know that power in an electrical motor (prime mover) changes with load, and power required is equal to Voltage X Current X Power Factor. And we know we can use this figure and convert to horsepower.

If your prime over is an engine (ICE), we’ll need to know torque times RPM to have a decent idea of Horsepower required to drive your 12kw rotating machine with no load.

With this said (four our audience):

  • Your readings for stator windings in series seems reasonable
  • Your Field reading seems reasonable

Now the questions:

  • How are you calculating the horsepower required to drive the generator at 1800 RPMs?
  • What horsepower does it take to drive the generator at 1800 RPMs with the field open?
  • Are you able to read the actual current in the field WHEN you are seeing 5hp consumed at no load?


I am always the student, and learn something new every day, but I’d expect lots of smoke from a 12KW ST Gen that was consuming 5HP WITH no load. I’d expect a blue bearing, a smoking field, or a fan beating a rat’s nest till the smoke pours out..

As a rule of thumb, we expect to provide about 2hp for every KW of power (load) we measure across the stator winding(s).

Other readers, jump in with your comments.. just for grins, here’s a link to my test bench


George B.



Posted in Critical Thinking, Free Energy, Generator Realities, Generators, Question of the day, Questions & Answers, Strange Stuff | Tagged , | 37 Comments

My latest field trip, remote places in Alaska.

17 years of intensive study of Alternative Power Production has made me a skeptic in so many ways. It’s not that there isn’t good equipment and decent investments, it’s that there are so many people who would sell you the wrong thing in order to profit off your investment. People in Government are amongst the larger crooks, it’s my opinion, and I feel it’s an educated one.

The end of the road is often the beginning of the Journey.


It took hours by plane, and two days of travel by truck to arrive at the end of the road, and there my journey began.

Eagle’s 2007 Flood is an example of what Nature can deliver, there are high water marks on some buildings, but many were crushed by ice and ground to bits. There’s heavy equipment that was twisted up like a pretzel, and all a reminder of what mother nature can deliver.

Alaska itself is an interesting study, there’s a complex spiderweb of subsidies that makes it difficult to discover the real cost of food, energy, or much of anything.  In areas outside of the Boroughs, there’s no property taxes, and inside the Boroughs, there’s near insanely high fees for things like sewer that are tied to water usage. Water the lawn, or wash the car? Not a good idea, not even if the water is cheap and plentiful.

I have always appreciated the simplicity of evaluating the off grid investment for Electricity, no need to compare the cost of a Kwh from the Mains, as they are not there to make use of. But it’s good to know the price of commercial power nearest your off grid site, just to know what you might be missing or gaining.

On this latest trip, I explored some on my own, in other cases, I was tutored some by my Alaska born friend Chuck F, he opened the doors to houses and homesteads, and small town power plants, and one of the first things I attempted to grasp is what people do in order to live and even thrive at minus 60F and below?

As I have often said, there are two basic plans for living off grid, one is living with a woman, and the other is living off grid without them.  A good study is Jim McGlothlin in Eagle, I instantly liked Jim and had the pleasure of sharing some time with him. He’s a Geologist by trade, a welder by his imagination. I’ve never seen better cabin construction, logs so closely fitted by Jim, that a proton couldn’t be squeezed between any of the logs in his work, but Chuck says it takes him a month to fit a new log. Of course Jim and Chuck have a long list of Jabs for each other.

But like many if not most men in remote areas in Alaska, Jim’s cabin is not so neat and tidy, and it doesn’t bother him at all to tell every person who sets in his guest chair not to squirm around too much, or the chair will fall apart. And that engine block in the corner, and the drill press next to the cookstove, it’s a handy thing, as you can stir a pot while you’re drilling that hole in a part for your gold dredge.

But just down river maybe 15 miles is Andy Bassish and Kate. It’s even more isolated here and how different does he live? I’ve watched the TV show ‘life below zero’, and I’ve wondered, is this the perfect environment to learn what really works and what doesn’t? Does the high cost of fuel, and the extreme effort to get new parts and or repairs cause you to do more research before you make an investment? What feminine touches does Kate bring to the house?

Andy comes off as a ‘hot head’ at times in the TV show, and I wondered how much he really knew and what makes him tick? How much does he think he knows, and is he into  learning from others?

Chuck and I made a run down river to the 70 mile, there we spent an incredible day looking at the geology, fishing, and enjoying a piece of the planet few get to see.  No need to beat the clock, as the sun never really sets this time of year, but it was a decent hour as we arrived to Calico Bluff, and just up from there is Andy and Kate’s place, we decided to stop in, but Andy knew we might do that.

I saw a new wind turbine, and a modest solar PV investment, a thousand watts, maybe a tad more. And a new house under construction.  There’s a comfortable looking temporary house with a comfortable front porch, and a retired 17 year old sled dog napping.  I thought about the 2007 flood, and all that Andy and Kate have done to recover.

It was a very pleasant visit, and I found Andy and Kate gracious hosts who made the time to show us around and explain what they were doing. Andy has done some amazing things, and one was loading an HD24 woodmiser saw mill onto two boats, and moving it down the Yukon to their place. I am very familiar with this mill, I have moved mine down the road, and it will push a truck when you’re stopping! I’m still not sure how he managed to load and unload that mill onto and off of two boats.

But there’s other things to be impressed with, like building a raft in Dawson and bringing a D4 sized Dozer to their place. It may not be as much of an engineering feat, but certainly shows his determination. Plus it’s and old dozer, and you need talent to keep out of trouble, and in his environment you could permanently lose a dozer to the mud.

His choice of equipment was outback for the Solar PV, and the 3KW Wisper wind turbine uses a Xantrex inverter, and all has been reliable so far. Kate did mention that the Wisper can sound like a helicopter at times, and we need factor that the silence in their world is something few of us will ever experience, so to spoil it is a larger sin there.


Kate and Andy's greenhouse  August 2014

Kate and Andy’s greenhouse August 2014

What does Andy have for a Generator? What does he thin he needs? What he has, and what he says he needs tells me he has a lot of hands on experience. Andy is no wannabe Bushman, he is a Bushman, and he is always looking to learn more, no way he’d tell you he knows it all, he is another man in learning mode, as most real DIYers are.

It’s my hope, and I’ll even say a prayer that the river and all of nature is good to both of them the rest of their days. Consider watching life below zero, Andy and Kate are no pretenders.

Years of study on my part, and still so much to learn…




Posted in Building Design, Critical Thinking, Inspirational People, Off Grid Power, Things I like | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

Sorry, but you lost your Country!

Or so it seems.

Epic Failure

Epic Failure

An important reminder! The less dependent on Government and others you are, the better your life will be in the future. It won’t be our Children that fix what’s coming, nor will it be our Grandchildren, that possibility has already been eliminated.

The war to divide us rages on! Ileana draws from her hands on life experience. I swapped a few emails with her yesterday. Her education certainly enhances her credibility in my eyes, as she is a PHD, and has taught Economics for a good many years. But it’s her hands on experience that I respect most, and her blow by blow account of what happened in Romania, she was there, and some of her accounts chillingly parallel to our current events.

Dr. Ileana Johnson Paugh is my favorite American. She arrived here with nothing, and quickly understood the rarity of our ‘rule of law’ and the freedoms we HAD here. She has been out spoken, and other Romanian professionals I know are scared, their scars are a reminder of why they need be quiet.

So yesterday, I note the new effort to divide us is trickling down to the progressive foot soldiers on the street. Posts that if you have concerns about illegals coming across the border you are a Bigot.  Notes about people coming here years ago and being welcomed in, and a note that all these children showing up on the border should be equally welcome as well. All those warning about TB that is resistant to antibiotics, the need to screen these people as we once did. The recent news that even the CDC has failed to enforce their critically important protocols!  It is a sign that all too many among us believe in magic. Bring any of this up, and they’ll tell you how petty you are.

Dr. Paugh is economist, and of course she knows that 18 trillion in debt means we are a far different country than 100 years ago. But she also recognizes that every effort to divide us is EXACTLY what happened in Romania.  She remembers the Government moving people into her Father’s house, and the people who didn’t hold their tongue when their property was confiscated disappeared in the middle of the night.

I’m a Bigot if I don’t like the fact that some Gay people, especially teachers have joined the progressive movement and work to eradicate religious Freedoms here.  But I recognize, there are a good many Gay people who are libertarians they note that the Government should have no right to tell them what kind of contracts they form with others, as it should be none of their effing business.

But here’s my guess, and I am a betting man, so tell me how much you’ll wager. WE HAVE already lost our country, and this is why so many on the right are attempting to offer the same promises of free stuff that the left does. Most of my black friends have no clue, that their vote no longer matters. We have arrived at that point where the only thing that will decide an election is who is willing to offer the most free stuff. I think it was about 10 years back that Harry Reid let it slip out that ‘they’ didn’t know what to do, and he was very concerned about those on the left of him having irrational expectations. The DNC chose to go with the flow versus educate their base that we can not continue building on our debt forever.

At this point, all that is left .. is my wish that my Grandchildren know that it was my hope I could help leave them the same freedom and opportunity that was afforded me, and I took no part in welcoming the change.

So.. I’m a bigot, I’m a racist, and I do bash ignorant Gays just like I do my other friends. Smart gay people know that when the Robinson’s lose their Freedom to believe as they do, so do the rest of us. For it is written in the history books, and all so easy to study.

The word cocksure comes to mind.. my mind is full of doubts, but I know people who have never harboured a doubt in their whole lives.

Of all the people I watch or listen to, Dennis Miller has processed what has happened, and has a plan, he knows we have lost our culture, and he has mentioned he believes there are people who WILL mess you up if you make too many waves. He’s likely right.. If only O’Reilly had Miller’s intellect, Miller runs about a light year ahead of O’Reilly..

All the best, and do prepare, the DIYer will live the better life in the future, and your services will be in great demand.


Posted in Buyer Beware, Critical Thinking, DIYer Skills, Survival Skills | Tagged | 6 Comments

Rewarding Every Wrong Behavior, now it’s Bergdahl.


Obama-Lands-at-NUMMI to honor Solyndra

Let me offer you some advice on predicting the future.

America is currently about rewarding EVERY undesirable behavior. It was once thought a good thing for Americans to save money, and is that why the U.S. Government has rewarded the most desirable behavior with no interest on savings?

The President landing on NUMMI’s grave, so he could honor a Green scam like Solyndra, that really happened you know, and it never stops.

We Viet Nam era Vets remember the way many treated us, we remember Jane Fonda, and John Kerry, and many apparently forgot how many of us were drafted into the service.

One thing this Administration may not understand, most of us have taken an oath to never allow our Government or the Public to discount and mistreat our younger Brothers who >have< served with honor.

To honor a Deserter is the height of dishonoring every Veteran who ever served. Go ahead, pick on Bergdahl’s Platoon, you apparently have no idea of the rage you create in us.

We love our Country, but we are totally ashamed of the Whitehouse staff, their lies are totally transparent to any person who has served.

 For you active duty Soldiers, that ole man who held the door open for you, the one who offered to help carry one of your bags. He’s likely a Viet Nam Vet, or a person who knows our story.

Now, let’s look into our crystal ball and predict the future!

Crystal Ball

History repeats itself.

Chuck Hagel, John Kerry, President Obama >WILL< make the Civilians who prosecuted the Viet Nam war look like experts. It’s like the President surrounds himself with the weak, and quickly gets rid of anyone who knows about gravity.  All three of these men are bent over, with their pants down, and Susan Rice tells us it’s a great look.

You’ll remember the biggest lie, “the war is nearly over”.

Have a great day….




Posted in Fighting Propaganda, Things I Hate!, UtterPower Articles | 2 Comments

Watch your friends Rationalize Ivanpagh

Isn’t it time to have a little fun with Ivanpagh?

Just another Monolith?

This is a great learning topic, just how much natural gas can Ivanpagh burn and your friends find it acceptable?

Be prepared to see a staggering amount of maintenance expense, I wonder how many portable cords the sand rats have chewed through in the maze of heliostat controls already?  

As you watch people deceive themselves, keep an eye open for those loons who talk about efficiencies per square foot, as if that has >anything< to do with reality on earth.  It will always be about cost/KWH.

Bring on the fracking, Ivanpah needs the NG!

Added 6/1/2014 0930hrs.

There is a way to directly compare Ivanpagh to the  Roadruner power plant that EPE buys power from.  The Road Runner is a KISS design per my measure, a single axis, ganged tracker, a single tracking element pointing a number of cost effective PV panels, no fluids, and a tiny fraction of the complexity and ongoing maintenance costs.

We need look at Ivanpagh from a grid perspective, as this is where the load is.

In reality, Ivanpagh attempts to be two types of power plants, one powered by radiated solar energy, the other powered by natural gas.

If we look at the Natural Gas portion, we need look at the energy conversions, and compare them to a modern Gas Turbine power plant running Natural Gas. What are the differences in efficiencies, and more importantly, should we compare the economies of scale that a company like Powersouth has over Ivanpagh? What kind of contract does Ivanpagh hold for natural gas, and what is the known future price for that fuel, this year, and 20 years from now? Some companies currently hold contracts for the next 25 years.

From the grid perspective, we don’t care who fills in the holes of power production, and if the roadrunner partners with an energy producer that operates on a much higher economy of scale, wouldn’t that be best for them AND the consumer?

Ivanpagh WILL be an orphan, it was not designed by those who understand the dynamics of the market, and the realities of maintaining ‘specialty’ equipment. This >is< the power plant your Professor might like to build, and we need to keep in mind, he’s likely never left the classroom.

Those who have stood up in the field looking into a brisk wind know that you never feel that that in your face in the classroom, and those who have never left the class room may never have learned NOT to piss into the wind.





Posted in Alternative Energy Sources, Buyer Beware, Critical Thinking, Earth & Energy, Free Energy, Generator Realities, Insane Grants, The New Green Movement, Things I Hate!, Your Wasted Tax Dollars | 6 Comments


Young people will never know how much fun it was for the public to hate the Phone Company. Can you imagine what would happen if every  Bell System ‘Unix like’ kernel crashed today?  And that implant? Just who in DC doesn’t have one? Just what doesn’t rely on a time division multiplexer, and an accurate source of timing? What is the dependence on GPS, and who doesn’t have a good clock of their own? The President thinks he writes executive orders on his own accord, and we think those thoughts that run through our heads are our own? If you catch yourself overusing the word ‘extreme’. If you keep telling your friends “they’re smarter than that”. If you always know you are right in every conversation (cocksure). You might have the CC. So many people seem to have no doubts, was it the same when they knew the earth was flat, and those who ruled REFUSED to look through the telescope? And here’s a link for your friends who know it should all be free :-)


Posted in Fighting Propaganda | 4 Comments

The Public Poll

Tuskegee Pilots

There’s an APP for that. I’m old enough to have observed some of the first Artificial Intelligence programs struggle in a PC.  Short words, few MIPS, little ram…. were huge road blocks.

Now days, AI is so good, it can read an email, and give you the best of the canned responses. It can ‘look’ just as personal as the emails you get from your Senator.

Michael Shermer’s theories on patternicity, and how the human brain works. Combine this with feed back loops, who did good, and what did they like?

Tuskegee pilots, I’d bet $1000 every one of them liked to chop wood, but who would know the connection?

But my muse is about Facebook and all of social media, and the data mining that is done.  If you’re mining gold, you have to pick through a lot of other stuff to get it. Is Facebook data mining equipment? what’s on the back end, and what are the products sold? You likely know the answer.

But now the question, isn’t it time to inject some garbage into your posts? There are words and phrases ‘OWNED’ by one group or another. Why not an app that injects a little language into your posts? A mention of ‘RUBBER BABY BUGGY BUMPERS’, does it deliver you an advertisement on the RH side of your screen?

I have an analogy… “like pissing just a little in a quart of fresh squeezed orange juice”. If the app isn’t out there already, it will be. ‘The one that injects random garbage into your posts.’  But you can bet it will watch your keystrokes and sell your every thought :-)

#Dude, I like the Red Chinese Marching girls, and the extreme weather, but this all happened two years ago. That Chevrolet has nice paint, but I’d rather drive a Ford.

My Senators are sifting through the data, it’s important for them to discover  what they need to think. They tally all the responses and know what their supporters need to hear.

The NBA was quick to take a poll. They understood that 98 percent of the public was outraged by what Sterling said in a private conversation. This is exactly the kind of thing my Senator Cantwell will use to guide here efforts, ‘the popular thing’. What Adam Silver did was popular, maybe even with the majority of the SCOTUS?  The microphones are on, and every reporter is looking for the next big story!  Will he be white, black, or in between?

Have a nice day.

George B.


Posted in Buyer Beware, Gravity, In The News, Survival Skills | Tagged , , | 3 Comments