Tracker #4 almost finished

Posted in Solar Power on February 18, 2009 by wizbandit

I’m waiting on six more KC-130’s to finish off Tracker #4

Then I will move the four SR-90’s to another temporary tracker with the GC-1000 Grid-tie Inverter.



UPDATE:  The six brand new KC-130’s have arrived and will be mounted on Tracker #4 when I get back from a brief trip to New York next week.


GMAC BANK says, SORRY, we don’t need your money…

Posted in Problems, Recession on February 13, 2009 by wizbandit


SMART?  SIMPLE?  SAFE?  What the hell does that mean?

My 19 yr old son, in his 2nd semester of college, working tword an engineering degree, was just told by GMAC bank “you can’t open a Money Market account with us”.  He worked over the summer and saved up almost $1000. They called him and told him he didn’t have any credit so they would have to decline his request for an account with them.

They did offer him a “safe deposit” box to hold his cash.

As of today, we are pulling all our money out of GMAC bank.  Every last dime. HOW DOES THAT WORK FOR YOU GMAC BANK??


What a FARCE, seems GMAC BANK has all the money they need now, TAX PAYER’S MONEY!

Solar Pathfinder Report…

Posted in Solar Power on February 5, 2009 by wizbandit

I received my Solar Pathfinder site analyses tool last week.  I opted for the cool software for an additional $129 that has a simple to read report.

Here is my Tracking Array #3, which is my NE most tracker.  It’s in the back.


tracker-3_b_0  tracker-3_b_1  tracker-3_b_2  tracker-3_b_3

         #1                    #2                    #3                    #4

The first is a simple summary, the second is where in relation to the Array was the Solar Pathfinder setup.  A top-down picture is taken over the Solar Pathfinder then imported into the software where you trace the reflections of all obstacles.  The software then creates the digital shading data picture. You can see at the 12N position on report #3 the tracker that is directly to the south of this one.

The system was entered as a two-axis system, which means in this case East to West tracking and seasonal tilting.

Kinda cool.  Most fixed roof arrays give 4-6 “solar hours” per day, trackers kick that up to 7 to 8+ solar hours per day.  The solar hours are listed on the bottom of report #4 as “Sun Hrs.”


Posted in Problems, Recession on January 28, 2009 by wizbandit


  Here in Florida, our Governor worked hard to get our property taxes reduced. To this I say thank you Governor Charlie Crist.  We live about as far in the country as you can get in Pinellas County, FL.  We have 5.5 acres we purchased in 1996. Two things we have here to keep our county taxing authority in check are SOH (Save Our Homes) cap, which limits come much each county can JACK UP our property taxes and Homestead Exemption.  Our Homestead exemption was doubled to $50,000 this year.  The old exemption of $25,000 did little to reduce property taxes on a $500,000 home, even the $50k does not do much but I guess it helps on a $100,000 home.

  Now comes the counties in Florida, complaining about property tax revenues falling short of meeting present budgets.  Pinellas County, FL is no exception, they are “talking” of closing Parks and Libraries, reducing county services like Animal Control & Code Enforcement.

  To put this in some “real” numbers, our property taxes for 2007 on 5.56 Acres purchased in 1996 for $207,500 was about $3,000.  We have a few easements that help reduce our taxes, one being from the power company for some power lines across the north running the full length of our property and another from CTX Railroad who still has an easement across our property.  My neighbor, on his 2.43 Acres purchased in 2004 for $300,000 paid $5000 in 2007.

  As you can see, property taxes are horrendous here in Florida.  Now to what is PISSING ME OFF!

  Pinellas County was out mowing the road sides along my property this morning. Now, we have not had enough rain this month to even keep the dust down, It’s January in Pinellas County Florida, the grass on the road sides is NOT GROWING THIS TIME OF YEAR!!

Look here, roadside – my yard.


Now, does this look like it needs mowing?  I’m on the right side of the fence, I have not mowed nor watered this zone yet this year!

Here is the waste, look close, 3 mowers and a guy in an orange vest supervising. Mowing WHAT??  The DIRT?  Or maybe THE ROAD NEEDS MOWING?



This is a TOTAL WASTE of my TAX DOLLARS!  How about “THE HELL WITH ROADSIDE MOWING” and use this wasted tax money to keep a few Libraries open?

My First Post of the New Year…

Posted in EV, Uncategorized on January 26, 2009 by wizbandit

I’m behind on posting, it seems the Holiday Season gets hectic-er every year. Here is a brief summary on whats happening.

We have decided to go ahead with our Solar Company officially known as “J-Tech Solar Electric (dba)”.  The parent company is J-COM Enterprises, inc., one of our registered Florida Corporations.  The link to the J-Tech Solar page is at the right –>.

We are in the process of lining up suppliers and setting up accounts.  We have our business Insurance and Bonding all done. Man, I just can’t believe what is needed to run a legitimate business in Florida, state fees, each county you want to do business in wants a annual fee, company safety meetings just to name a few.

Last year in July I posted about my EV Ranger truck project.  I’m happy to report yesterday I picked up all the parts I need to complete the conversion except the batteries. A fellow EVer, Jerry Wagner over in Melbourne, FL decided not to do his conversion due to health issues.  He offered all of his parts for a fair price so I decided to just get everything he had instead of ordering the parts from a half dozen different places.


Here we have the DC motor for A/C and Power Steering pump and the 12 volt Vacuum pump, the LogiSystems 550A PWM Drive Motor Controller and the potbox:

mvc-423f1  mvc-424f1  mvc-427f2

The 2/O Welding cable, connectors and Battery terminal caps, two Kilovac contactors, 55A DC to DC converter to supply the existing 12 volt system in the Ranger, a nifty DC heater core for those freezing winter days and my CONVERT IT EV book :)-:

  mvc-431f1  mvc-426f1  mvc-425f1

Last, the Netgain 9″ WARP DC Traction Motor:


(I just found out the Logisystems 550A PWM controller has to go back to the factory for upgrades)

This Comment Needs Serious Interpretation.

Posted in Problems on November 7, 2008 by wizbandit

That’s unfortunate. Just because some kids went on your lawn and stole some signs? Just because “Joe the Plumber” in his fictional scenario would see taxes increase slightly because Obama decided not to continue the already-here Federal “Make Us Richer” tax cuts? Just because your candidate lost?

I’m not going to debate this with you on your (or my) blog, but it’s a surprisingly immature attitude of “taking my ball and going home” mentality from an adult.


First off, I was going to take the signs down the day after anyhow, By someone taking my signs it was nothing more than a member of the Obama tribe “rubbing my nose in the Obama Feces”.

And obviously this guy has not been paying attention.  I admit, I lost the game, I went home, but the BALL I took home was NOT my BALL, it was HIS.  You see, I had no Basketball, he has many, many Basketballs.

Someone TOOK one of HIS Basketballs and gave it to ME, even though I didn’t WIN, I didn’t work for it, nor did I give him ANYTHING in return.  This is the EXACT same thing Obama is going to do, he is just going to do it with DOLLARS.

We Need Change? Okay Obama, I have your CHANGE…

Posted in Problems on November 7, 2008 by wizbandit

November 4th, 2008 was a time of “change” for us.  My family supported the McCain-Palin ticket, myself being a life-long Republican and my wife as well, being a life-long Democrat. Election night thieves stole all our McCain-Palin signs from out in the front yard.

We were in the process of building a Solar Renewable Energy Installation company, Solar Hot Water systems and Photovoltaic Electric Power systems.  We had our Florida State Contractors License, we were working on our Solar Contractor License, we were in the process of obtaining county licenses, posting bonds, setting up insurance and a fleet of trucks.  On November 5th, 2008 we decided NOT to participate in the upcoming Federal “Share-the-Wealth” program.  We are NOT going to pour our hearts and soles into something we love to do just to have our money given to someone who did not work for it.  We have stopped operations and closed the doors.

The end results?  My wife and I retired and will live off our pension for the next 4 years.

1- We WON’T be spending money with GM nor FORD for company installation trucks.

2- We WON’T be buying conduits and electrical supplies from GRAYBAR ELECTRIC.

3- We WON’T be buying wire from HOUSTON WIRE.

4- We WON’T be buying aluminum solar mounting hardware from PROSOLAR.

5- We WON’T be buying MULTI-CONTACT Solar Panel Connectors.

6- We WON’T be buying fuel from BIG OIL.

7- We WON’T be paying Licensing fees to the State of FL, Pinellas Co., Hillsbourgh Co. and Pasco Co.

8- We WON’T be buying Insurance and Bonds.

9- We WON’T be providing jobs to 10 American Workers.

10- We WON’T be helping the environment, reducing CO2 emissions and help provide clean renewable energy to 1000’s of homes and businesses across the Great State of Florida.

I am ashamed of my state, The Great State of Florida, for supporting a man that is going to force many businesses to close their doors.  How does this work for you now President OBAMA?  Can you hear me NOW? Oh yea, in case we forget, he is HALF WHITE.