A Late Greeting

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11 years 7 months ago #25295 by sgroom
A Late Greeting was created by sgroom
Hi All,

I should have stared here, but I guess it never too late :) - the tagline was to describe my situation and my hopes for what I hope to achieve - I hope the below isnt too long...

We have 5 acres in Darfield, west of Christchurch - previous to Sept 4 many folks would have said "where's Darfield?" I guess, but now that we have had a but of a shake that made news, I am no longer in such an obscure place!

We moved here from Sydney 2 years ago having spent 10 years there, but dont worry came from NZ originally (Napier for me, Wellington for my wife) - so earthquakes are non-suprise, but all things being equal 7.1 is a large shake in anyone's book.

We have just completed building our off-grid home and made it as sensibly eco as we could, we dont use gas and generate all our own power - have been there since 15th May 2010, so I guess a 6month celebration this weekend? (being 15th Nov)

Oh yeah - no damage to house *at all* not even a broken glass - but good luck than good management.

I have chosen the components of our off-grid system myself, not using lead-acid batteries but using lithium ion type batteries (LiFePO4 for those interested) so this is somewhat unique. We dont have a wind generator (yet) and not sure if we will need one until I get an electric car.

The house is a custom kitset ( www.kitsetgo.co.nz/ ) so we design the floorplan and they ship us the house pieces to our spec, employ a builder and away we go! It is a 5 bedroom + Study home 320m^2 including a triple garage+workshop.

We have 6 pet sheep (originally destined to be chops, but apparently they are too friendly and have names now I am told) 6 chickens that give us eggs, 3 rare breed enderby rabbits and another 'standard' rabbit that has personality issues.

We also have around 400 trees that we have started to cut down to supply wood for us to heat our water and home in our wetback fireplace. The water is also heated on sunny days by solar HW panels on the roof.

We also have planted an orchard of approx 50 trees (fruit, nut, olive, citrus) - so in a few years we will see how that pans out - which thrive and which dont.

My hope for this place is to become mostly self sufficient - to purchase an electric car (and more solar panels and wind) to run it when available, and to be mortgage free as soon as possible.

We built this home to show ourselves and everyone you dont have to change your lifestyle to enjoy being off-grid - or spend a million bucks. The off-grid adder was

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11 years 7 months ago #25296 by sgroom
Replied by sgroom on topic A Late Greeting
Hi All,

I should have stared here, but I guess it never too late :) - the rough tagline was to describe my situation and my hopes for what I hope to achieve - I hope the below isnt too long...

We have 5 acres in Darfield, west of Christchurch - previous to Sept 4 many folks would have said "where's Darfield?" I guess, but now that we have had a but of a shake that made news, I am no longer in such an obscure place!

We moved here from Sydney 2 years ago having spent 10 years there, but dont worry came from NZ originally (Napier for me, Wellington for my wife) - so earthquakes are non-suprise, but all things being equal 7.1 is a large shake in anyone's book.

We have just completed building our off-grid home and made it as sensibly eco as we could, we dont use gas and generate all our own power - have been there since 15th May 2010, so I guess a 6month celebration this weekend? (being 15th Nov)

Oh yeah - no damage to house *at all* not even a broken glass - but good luck than good management.

I have chosen the components of our off-grid system myself, not using lead-acid batteries but using lithium ion type batteries (LiFePO4 for those interested) so this is somewhat unique. We dont have a wind generator (yet) and not sure if we will need one until I get an electric car.

The house is a custom kitset ( www.kitsetgo.co.nz/ ) so we design the floorplan and they ship us the house pieces to our spec, employ a builder and away we go! It is a 5 bedroom + Study home 320m^2 including a triple garage+workshop.

We have 6 pet sheep (originally destined to be chops, but apparently they are too friendly and have names now I am told) 6 chickens that give us eggs, 3 rare breed enderby rabbits and another 'standard' rabbit that has personality issues.

We also have around 400 trees that we have stared to cut down to supply wood for us to heat our water and home in our wetback fireplace. The water is also heated on sunny days by solar HW panels on the roof.

We also have planted an orchard of approx 50 trees (fruit, nut, olive, citrus) - so in a few years we will see how that pans out - which thrive and which dont.

My hope for this place is to become mostly self sufficient - to purchase an electric car (and more solar panels and wind) to run it when available, and to be mortgage free as soon as possible.

We built this home to show ourselves and everyone you dont have to change your lifestyle to enjoy being off-grid - or spend a million bucks. The off-grid adder was

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11 years 7 months ago #354536 by reggit
Replied by reggit on topic A Late Greeting
Welcome to the site, sgroom :D

Saw that you had duplicated this thread, so have got rid of the extra one for you.

Take a break...while I take care of your home, your block, your pets, your stock! [;)] PM me...

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11 years 7 months ago #354540 by sod
Replied by sod on topic A Late Greeting
Hi sgroom that is very interseting thanks, love the idea :)

Having time is a measure of enthusiasm:rolleyes:

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11 years 7 months ago #354543 by igor
Replied by igor on topic A Late Greeting
Saw an incomplete electric car on TM the other day. An old daihatsu charade that someone had converted. All certified and everything. Most of the electric stuff was still in it. Might be worth a look for you.

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11 years 7 months ago #354589 by sgroom
Replied by sgroom on topic A Late Greeting

tigger;344669 wrote: Welcome to the site, sgroom :D

Saw that you had duplicated this thread, so have got rid of the extra one for you.


Thanks that was a bit of finger trouble I had - was looking for a way to delete it...

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11 years 7 months ago #354590 by sgroom
Replied by sgroom on topic A Late Greeting

igor;344677 wrote: Saw an incomplete electric car on TM the other day. An old daihatsu charade that someone had converted. All certified and everything. Most of the electric stuff was still in it. Might be worth a look for you.


Hi - good spotting, but it sounds like too much work, I was hoping to purchase a Nissan Leaf or similar when available.

Most electric cars due into NZ market by 2012/3 from what I can see.

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11 years 7 months ago #354593 by sgroom
Replied by sgroom on topic A Late Greeting

sod;344673 wrote: Hi sgroom that is very interseting thanks, love the idea :)


Yeah it appeals to us - 6 months so far and no power/gas bills - nice.

Regards,

Steve.

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7 years 11 months ago #491313 by Solco
Replied by Solco on topic A Late Greeting
Hi Steve, very interesting reading your story and thanks for sharing it!

I also live off grid and installed my own system and I'm most interested how your LiFePo4 batteries are going? They must be over 4 years old now?
I'm using Lead Assid's but think about switching with the next set. Got only 5 yrs. out of the previous Trojan's L16's.
Would you be interested to exchange system details, components data etc.?
I have just joined LSB and still have to do my introductory. :)
Cheers, Mike

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7 years 11 months ago #491328 by Deanna
Replied by Deanna on topic A Late Greeting
Very interested to know how its going 3-4 years later. We are about to get a solar system put in that will feed back to the grid. :)

25 acres, 1400 Blue Gums, Wiltshire sheep, 5 steers, 2 cows, ducks, chickens, bees, dog, cats, retired, 1 husband and 3 grandkids.

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7 years 10 months ago #491442 by Solco
Replied by Solco on topic A Late Greeting
Deanna, good on you for going solar! It's so much more viable now compared to just a few years ago.
....I hope sgroom comes back to here

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7 years 10 months ago #491452 by Deanna
Replied by Deanna on topic A Late Greeting

Solco;496235 wrote: Deanna, good on you for going solar! It's so much more viable now compared to just a few years ago.
....I hope sgroom comes back to here

Thanks Solco, we are havng a 10kw system put in, probably only need a 6 kw, but want to be able to feed plenty back to the grid. I'm very excited about it, will post a thread here when I do. Showing progress aspect. :)

25 acres, 1400 Blue Gums, Wiltshire sheep, 5 steers, 2 cows, ducks, chickens, bees, dog, cats, retired, 1 husband and 3 grandkids.

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7 years 10 months ago #491476 by Solco
Replied by Solco on topic A Late Greeting
Wow, 10 KW sounds great! I'm just wondering if you create that much excess power if it works out economically, as most power companies only pay around 10 cents/Kwh?
A friend in Nelson has a grid-tied 5 KW system and uses timers to use the bulk during the day as much as possible. He get's 17 cents/Kwh, still a lot less than he pays for a unit.

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7 years 10 months ago #491791 by sgroom
Replied by sgroom on topic A Late Greeting
Hi - system is going great, batteries are the same as the day we put them in. Still runs our entire home including oven, cooktop, dishwasher, lights, computers etc etc any more questions welcome

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