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Thread: Project 1 from ShaneJackson. Category: Custom Automotive on/off road Welding

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  1. #1

    Default Project 1 from ShaneJackson. Category: Custom Automotive on/off road Welding

    Looks like I am the first to post their project for the new winter time contest.

    This is a fun one. I am building a custom roof for a 6 seat NEV car..... AKA a limo golf cart.

    The original fiberglass roof will be removed and 8 - 60watt solar panels will be added. The plan is to add an inverter so the cart can be used as a solar generator in a power out situation. I may also add a small grid tied inverter so any excess power can be feed back to the grid.....

    The original roof was held on with 1" square tubing so I will be building another frame out of 1" square tubing to match.

    I picked up the metal at lunch today and will be cutting it this afternoon.... pic's coming soon.
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

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    Looks like technology has come a long way in the last few months. I thought 500 watt grid-tie micro-inverters were still in the couple hundred dollar range, but it looks like they can be had for 100-200 bucks. Out of curiousity, were you planning on getting this approved by your electric company as a true grid tie system, or just plugging it in knowing that you'll never make enough power to raise any eyebrows?

  3. #3

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    Actually this is not for myself. It is for my father.... After looking at the price of the inverters, I will probably skip the grid tied portion and just have an off grid inverter.

    As for getting approval... I have checked into what all is involved as I am working on a 5.28kw system for my house.... and I can say it is a load of BULLCRAP what all is involved. Not so much the permitting, application fee's, and all the paperwork they require.... but the "contract" they require (and the super low rates they pay for the power you produce) and the monthly fees they charge just for the privilege to hook up and feed them power.... I say screw them! I'm going off grid.
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

  4. #4

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    Interested in the grid-tie for cheap too. Far as a gold cart. Last few I did where 6 seats. What brand? Aluminum 1x1 I assume?

    Not big on battery golf carts (all mine are gas powered), but the grid-tie is another direction.
    Mike R.
    Email: admineverlast@everlastwelders.com
    www.everlastgenerators.com
    www.everlastwelders.com
    877-755-9353 x203
    M-F 12 - 7PM PST
    FYI: PP50, PP80, IMIG-200, IMIG-250P, 210EXT and 255EXT.

  5. #5

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    Nope steel 1x1x 16awg. Aluminum would have been better (lighter) but cost too much.

    The car(t) is a Star 48-6L
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

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    I was looking into doing a 1.8Kw system for my house and may still do it when I get my tax return next year. What power company do you use? I know SoCal Edison has applications and inspections and all that crap, but I haven't read anything about a contract or fees for hooking up solar. If you "rent" the solar from one of the company's then yeah you have to sign the 20 year contract and pay the monthly fees, but I was planning on buying a system wholesale online and installing it myself. I was just gonna pay a certified electrician to do the final wiring.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  7. #7

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    Duke power in North Carolina. Here is a PDF with all their fee's and such.

    http://www.duke-energy.com/pdfs/NCPPN.pdf

    One thing to note is our kWh rate is approx $.097.....

    The main thing that gets me is they charge $16.20 in addition to all other standard meter charges to have it hooked up. That's 167kW a month I would have to feed back to break even. I'm doing a tracker so I get 6.2hr a day rated power so that is about 1kW of the system just to break even with "fee's"... and that is best case. Also the chart is set up so the rates in the months of off peak (the time of the year where you may actually produce more than you use).... you get screwed royally.

    Anyways I am planning on just going off grid with all outlets, lighting, and well. That leaves the stove, dryer, and HVAC on the grid (for now). It will be a fair amount of wiring work to make the change but not a big deal for me. I wired my house when I built it 2 years ago. There has only been small changes to the code since then.
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

  8. #8

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    Click image for larger version. 

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    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

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    How are you going to deal with drainage? I assume if it rains, the frames around the panels will trap water on top and once it evaporates will leave behind deposits that will kill your efficiency in short order. Looks good though.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  10. #10

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    Dive faster.... lol. I dont think I have to worry to much about that unless I can find a flat spot to park it (other than inside). I will probably just keep the top waxed to help. I guess we will see if this is a problem with time.
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

  11. #11

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    No offense but we would have to add a rudder and some flaps for here in Kansas as it might try to lift off with our nice breezy days. Project does look like it was well planned out and worked out just fine. Nice looking job.
    PowerTig 200DX
    Supercut 50P
    PowerTig Micro 185 SOLD GREAT MACHINE
    Millermatic 200
    Miller Thunderbolt
    Jet 1340 Lathe
    Jet 20" Drill Press
    Jet 12" Wet Band Saw
    Kalamazoo H7 Bandsaw
    Forward 12,000 lb 4 Post Lift

  12. #12

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    Jezz... it was almost 1 am when I posted it.... I forgot my compressor too.

    Actually my inverter is a 6kW continuous 12kW peak inverter 240v. It's a XW6048 if anyone wants to look it up. I could cut everything else off and run my 200DX. Not something I would want to do but I could if had too.
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

  13. #13

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    In reply to the hassle of selling power to the utility company, A good friend of mine has setup several wind power systems here in Eastern Kansas as the wind does blow a lot. Here at our home is an ideal place as we are on top of a high area here and can see 26 miles to the west and 38 to the east. We were talking about a system here which would supplement our home but it was not cost effective and the payout would take approx 25 years if you did not have any high unexpected maintenance cost. Our annual electric cost for our home is approx $1920.00 per year for a ranch home that is 3800 sq ft main floor . A 15 year payout plus maintenance just did not look cost effective.

    He remarked about a system north of here by Leavenworth that cost approx $33,000 to install 4 years ago and the amount of return they are getting from the power company and what there power cost are now.
    His comment was that if the power company would actually pay a decent rate for the power they get he could see a profit from this but at the current rate and with maintenance costs he is not seeing his system payout
    and recover his cost.
    PowerTig 200DX
    Supercut 50P
    PowerTig Micro 185 SOLD GREAT MACHINE
    Millermatic 200
    Miller Thunderbolt
    Jet 1340 Lathe
    Jet 20" Drill Press
    Jet 12" Wet Band Saw
    Kalamazoo H7 Bandsaw
    Forward 12,000 lb 4 Post Lift

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    Here is SoCal the excess power is sold back at the generation rate, which is like $0.04/kwhr. I think the reatil price to purchase it for your home is between 0.12 and 0.27, not including delivery fees, which about double the bill. Still, the system I was looking to purchase was a 1.8Kw system and had a payback time of ~8 year. The system was going to be $8900 to purchase, ~500 in permitting fees, and between $500-1000 for the electrition to do the final wiring after I physically install the system myself. Federal tax credit of 30% knocks $3000 off the price, and Edison is paying ~$0.14/watt in incentives, so another $250. That brings my total cost to ~$6800 and will save us ~70 bucks a month. Works out to 8 years break even, but we also just installed a pool and don't know how much the pump is going to run a month, so it may be less time until payback. I live in the middle of the desert, but used a 5 hour a day estimate as my roofline is east/west.

    After that Edison just bills you once a year, so you don't get screwed every month with generation rates. If you produce more in the winter than you use, you save the credits until the summertime when you can use them up. Only once a year do they tally up used vs produced and send you a bill. So as long as you don't install a system that generations huge amounts of overages, then you don't really get screwed on the production vs retail rate.
    Poewr I-Mig 205P
    Powertig 185

  15. #15

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    If you are serious about a system, wait for one of my next projects.... It is a solar tracker. I have the same problem with not much good south facing roof line so I am doing pole mount. Originally I was just going to do a fixed system but figured out a way to make them a single axis tracker for around $200 more.
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    Washington State
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ShaneJackson View Post
    If you are serious about a system, wait for one of my next projects.... It is a solar tracker. I have the same problem with not much good south facing roof line so I am doing pole mount. Originally I was just going to do a fixed system but figured out a way to make them a single axis tracker for around $200 more.
    A solar tracker would be a cool project. I'm curious what kind of hardware you will use to implement this. I'm completely green (no pun intended!) about this solar stuff so who knows, there's probably a dozen off-the-shelf or DIY products out there already to help you with it.
    Is it OK to want to break something just so that you can weld it back together?

    Everlast PowerTIG 185 Micro IGBT AC/DC Welder

  17. #17

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    Here are some pictures:

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    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

  18. #18

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    Have you gotten a chance to take it out and about? Wondering how fast the solar panels charge the cart... Could it keep them charged all the time?
    -------------------------------------------
    Spike Customs, Inc.
    Fresno, CA 93727
    ph- 559-549-RIDE(7433)
    -------------------------------------------
    -Follow me on twitter!-

  19. #19

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    I'm still working on the wiring.... but have took it for a spin with the panels on top. It drives the same as the fiberglass top (not much more weight with the panels). As for keeping the cart charged, no. The panels will provide a little over 7 amps. At cruise the cart draws around 60-70 amps if I remember correctly. I have a programmer coming tomorrow to speed the cart up and will take measurements.

    Increase in range was not the goal of this project. but should yield 10%+, That is if you just drove it as far as it would go. If you stopped along the way, you would get even more.
    Everlast PowerTig 200DX
    Everlast Supercut 50P
    I need a MIG.... which one to buy:
    I-Mig 160, I-Mig 200, or a MTS 160

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by ShaneJackson View Post
    ...
    Have you found a good deal on agm batteries ?
    2013 250EX : SSC Pedal : I-MIG 250P 20' Profax gun : Power Plasma 60 p80 torch : 3M Speedglas 9100XX : Evolution Rage 3 DB cold saw

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