Musings on Solar PV.. watching the cycles, and buying low. Is it time?

As I look back on my journey through life, I think about those neat little cars we had in the late seventies. One of my favorites was the Mazda push rod 1200 cc commuters that sold for about $1800. According to a Boeing Engineer that commuted from Kent to Everett 5 days a week, he was getting a >real<  38.x miles a gallon measured by neck to neck fill ups.

Eighteen Hundred dollars actually bought something back then, but still… these cars were a bargain at that price in the day, and seldom did anything break. They were strippers by today’s standards, and the deluxe model meant you had an automatic choke and a radio!   The Mazda 1200 was a pushrod marvel! A cross flow head, strong lower end, and the little engine would rev 8000 RPMs! When I visited the race track at SIR back in the days, the Mazda Rotary was on the track at SCCA races, so was the much inferior 1200 cc Datsun, and some racers spent a fortune getting power out of them, but no Mazda 1200s did I ever see.

Here I am looking back on these light weight wonders, and that little Mazda 1200cc I once owned and loved. The drive train a mechanical marvel of lightweight alloys and simplicity! Aluminum being one of the most abundant elements was inexpensive then. These old designs are the DIYer EV builders dream as well, or at least in my mind.   

The cycles we see during our lives.  Commodities higher than a kite, and then so low that people won’t pick up some of them if they are offered free! It seems timing has been important up until now, but doesn’t now look different? Haven’t we moved off the map of the known into the unknown?

One of the more expensive components for a solar system is the panels themselves, and through the Magic of Government Involvement , Wealth Transfer, and Colossal failures, Solar  Panels can be purchased inexpensively. Is it time you considered taking some of your hard earned dollars that are evaporating in your savings account and buying panels?

My answer.. yes, if you have the skills to roll your own, or friends that can help you meet code, and steer clear of  problems, like neighbors who might plant trees to the south of your panels.  

If I were buying panels, I’d sure consider the tried and true, following is news of yet another company setting up in or near Portland Oregon.  A Mecca of  Liberal thought, where many think that supply and demand can be manipulated by the all knowing, all seeing Deities in Washington DC, ‘their Gods’.   If you have ever taken a moment to read of Shiva, of the Hunter, of the Illusionary world. Of the warnings that it is not just our youth who have no direction, but man in General. The illusionary world, full of  Lies, Deceit, hypocrisy, and IPOs!    

Thin film roll on roofing..  in thirty 30 years, we could know if it’s as reliable as the stuff we’re familiar with.  If you were considering buying panels now as a hedge, and you have a safe place to store them until you fly them..  Consider buying the proven stuff by the pallet, the cost goes way down, and pallets are packed for shipping.  With individual panels, the packing need be good, and it’s expensive for those who do the shipping to you. Consider a  group purchase with other DIYers in your area and target the pallet load.. normally 20 panels..

We currently see a total disregard for the Value of  Coal, we know it’s just another hydro carbon we can easily manipulate into  clean forms of energy, and even stock to make plastics, clothes, housing, and far more. But we need also recognize that Aluminum is an energy intensive material, and a key material.  Could the Deities in DC destroy the Industry before they understand it’s a cornerstone? Who in their right mind would think any reality would stand between them and their re-election? 

A story from Portland      

What’s your guess, is the world ready for this product? I say there’s the chance it’ll go over like the EV.. everyone wants it.. if the government will only destroy more of our currency to help  deliver it to them for an attractive price 🙂

After this election, that $1800 car will likely cost you $18,000. DC will say it is a good thing.. it might cause you to move to the city, and ride the bus… it’s where you belong..  


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5 Responses to Musings on Solar PV.. watching the cycles, and buying low. Is it time?

  1. Richard says:

    Move to the city! Yes that’s the answer and there will be no one to grow the food and they have all the answers. When i was younger i was reading about the best place to live in the USA and it said the worst place was Wyoming because there wasn’t a good city there. Well i had decided that that is where I wanted to live. Didn’t make it thought. I made it to the country. I built my house, observatory, wood stoves etc. Spent time cutting firewood and putting the food from the garden into my root cellar. Finally 10 years ago I got the best garage and workshop that i have been dreaming of. I’ve been here for 35 years working hard and living good. Not in debt for something i did not need. Sure my body is wearing out but I’ve lived a full life. What does the city offer, nothing! Well maybe good museums. Show me where nature is in the city, it’s not there. People live there but throw food out because it has a little mark on it, they throw out a lot of good things. Here I live on a small income and live good. When i see my root cellar and my wood pile I see security that I’ll make it though another winter and live a real life. Not in a 2 room apartment, working calling people about who they are going to vote for and wondering where i went wrong. Our government has lost touch with reality. They don’t understand why anyone would not want to do what they think is the right way to live. Look at what they invest in and fail in and then tell me that they are all knowing. The world is not 6000 years old and bigger is not better.
    Well i’m ranting, sorry. Woke up frustrated! Then i read the above, the many before about our leaders. You’re right we are being lead by the blind.

  2. JackG says:

    Richard, nice post. George, thanks for the reminder on the times and how we might as well put the folly to good use, for the right price.

  3. Ron Carroll says:

    In 1080 I bought a 72 Datsun 1200 for $350. It came with a spare front fender to replace the crumpled one on it. It had a weak clutch but, other than faded paint, was intact. I replaced the fender, installed new clutch plate, then painted with the local professional paint shop’s “mis-matched” = 1/2 price hearse gray metallic Imron paint, adding hardener. The final upgrade was to replace the tiny wheels/tires with a set from an old Saab that I had bought to keep daughter’s first car in parts. The little Datsun could cruise at 65 – 70, had a good heater and fair radio, used no oil, and consistantly got 30+ mpg on regular. After about 7 years of commuting (80 miles/day) I retired it to my back lot because I was getting a little bored with it and wanted to drive a M-B diesel I had found. For the next 5 years I would start the little Datsun and move it around to keep it limbered up. Finally I ran across a man who was down on his luck and sold it to him for $1. I never learned how it served him, but, it served me very well, still looked good (Imron paint LASTS!) and owed me nothing. Given a little care, I would expect these little cars to last at least 300,000 miles. It must have had close to 200,000 miles on it when I sold it. This was the B110 model with 1200 cc engine. The B210 had, I think, a 1400 cc engine but was much the same body. If I still had the running gear, I think it would make the guts of a good garden tractor project.

  4. bob g says:

    back in the early 90’s i went to work for a company that provided me with a company car, it was an ’81 datsun pickup truck, 3/4 ton diesel. they told me it probably needed serviced as not one gave a crap about the thing. i drove it for a week and checked the mileage, it averaged a bit less than 30mpg on the hiway.
    the next week i changed the very black tar like oil, and found that no one had changed the spin on primary fuel filter in its 186k mile life!
    i tried to removed the air filter cartridge and found it so bound up with dirt that it could not be removed, so i removed the whole unit, piping and all. took a rubber mallet to the housing to loosen the impacted dirt and finally got the cartridge out, i have not idea how it got any air. i then took all the piping and housing to the car wash to clean all the dirt out of it. reinstalled with a new filter element and noticed i needed to turn down the curb idle control on the dash as now the engine had gained around 500rpm at idle!
    rechecked the mileage and it went to 35mpg! wow
    i drove the pickup till 240k miles, and then had the center rivet hub of the clutch plate fail, replaced the clutch
    at about 250k miles it lost a coolant hose at the oil cooler and severely overheated the engine, lost a head gasket, replaced that with a head surface grind.
    at around 283k miles the little manual tranny finally gave up, bought an installed a used unit
    at 320k miles the pickup was sold for 300 bucks to a guy who ran it for years too and from work,,, it just kept on ticking away.
    when they sold it, it still did not use a quart of oil between oil changes either.
    i am convinced those little datsun diesel pickups were the best small diesel auto’s every conceived by man! my understanding is the little toyo diesels are much the same in engine reliability. i have an ’83 toyo diesel pickup currently, the thing is kind of ugly and i don’t really care! it got 31-32 mpg from western washington to central kansas with the bed so loaded that the rear bumper would scrape on the high spots along the freeway, and it has one of those steel work tops on the bed which adds a lot of aerodynamic drag too! i drove it to kansas like i stole it, not much in the way of power, but it uses no oil and just runs and runs, without the added weight or the work topper it will get 36mpg on the highway and better than 30 in town. i don’t know what else a guy could ask of a little pickup? i absolutely love it, although i wish it had A/C and P/S, but it has a really nice am/fm/cd player so i guess that makes up for being hot and having a hard time steering it.

  5. George B. says:

    Mazda apparently bought a license to build the tried and true Perkins 4 cylinder and shoved it in a Mazda pickup, it arrived here just about the time the gas crunch was letting up, and sales of small diesels went down. There are still a few in the Puget Sound area. The last thing to fail is the engine, it might outlive two or three drive trains… same experience.

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