I realize the community forums aren't very active and a several Rialta folks are moving on to other living arrangements, but surely someone will find this helpful. On the topic of summer heat, I realize I could’ve relocated to another climate, but I love the community in Austin and decided to put my time, money, and energy into improving my living space over relocation costs plus building a new community elsewhere. Big ups out to Dave R. for proving the possibilities of solar-powered air-conditioning, out to J. Donna for all the enthusiasm, help, friendship, free tow, and new tires, and of course out to Tynan for sharing all kinds of fantastic hacks and leading us to RV life. Tynan, I don’t know where I’d be without a marine fridge, great find!
Full build album below; descriptions written under most pictures, and continue scrolling to the bottom for the most recent updates: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10100818256773744.3282966.8329234&type=1&l=e9664bbfe7
Yes, the new array reliably runs both runs the 5kbtu air conditioner and charges my batteries simultaneously from 10AM-5PM. I only having 4 golf cart batteries, so I usually shut off the A.C. after 5pm because my panels are permanently mounted flat (not tiltable towards a sunset) and I simply don't have the battery capacity to run it at night. Yamaha's 1000W ultra quiet generator runs up to 9-10 hours per gallon, so that's a likely upgrade I'll add in the old generator compartment to run it at night, though I really wish it had an electric start so it can be programmed to come on only when needed (anyone know of a similar 1000W high-efficiency, ultra-quiet, electric-start model or a hack to modify the Yamaha?). The four SunPower 435W panels are 20% efficient and outperformed my expectations (in clear direct sunlight, two panels can often put out over 600W and I’ve seen them peak over 700W!) causing me to add an additional MidNite Classic 150 charge controller (which do need networked to each other btw, otherwise they get confused when trying to change charge stages). Though the controller is $620, it was still more cost efficient for me over wiring the bank to 24V, then adding a big (big to start generator occasionally, otherwise 12V loads are relatively small) 24V-12V step-down converter, 2kW 24V pure sine inverter, and a 120VAC->24VDC charger for emergencies. Keeping the bank at 12V allows me to still use the van's alternator to charge the bank in an emergency, which I've had to do once when it was left in a shop unexposed to sun for a week for maintenance and I forgot to turn off the marine fridge, otherwise the solenoid is always disconnected. I found the new panels for $300 each a couple hours away on Craigslist and knew this was my best shot at an air-conditioned summer. Austin, Texas has had a abnormally mild & rainy summer so far, so it hasn't been tested in 100F heat yet; I really need to add a heavy insulation blanket between the van & coach, as well as insulating the bubble skylight. I did already add insulation to most of the non-moving upper sections of the cabin windows plus the entire rear window; naturally it's coldest on the bed. Currently in the central desk/kitchen area, it’s really never cold, just cool enough to not drown in sweat, and I do run two directional fans inside 24/7 (not the roof vent fan while A.C. is on obviously). Sealing up door gaskets and vents could help too. I’ll also note that the microwave and stock electric water heater are used regularly too, but never all at the same time (I have a Prowatt 2000 inverter wired into the breaker panel). Not pictured in the photo album is the hole cut in shelf where the intake ducting is ported into the air conditioner's enclosure.
It's been annoying and I'd prefer not to unsubscribe, even though the community section isn't very active these days. Can a delay be set up so that emails notifications of new community posts won't be sent for half a day, enough time for mods to delete the posts before notifications are sent?
I've only lately become aware and uncomfortable about slathering the largest organ in my body with petrochemicals. I recall Tynan recommending a Dr Bronner's soap in an RV video, though I can't find any reliable information that comments on the safety of the potassium hydroxide used in the liquid soaps. Products I use often that I should probably consider altering consist of:
- liquid body soap (also used to shave)- dandruff shampoo (I've tried no-poo and failed)- antiperspirant (lots of scare over the Aluminum Z.T.G.)- sunscreen- sex lube- toothpaste- multivitamin- clothing (Tynan mentions wool; is organic critical or are things like pesticides easily washed out?)- bedding (would you go as far as mattresses, pillows, & toppers too?)- clothes detergent ? (I don't have sensitive skin, but maybe it's still a risk)- dish soap (also used as hand soap)- all purpose cleaner (windows, kitchen, bath. I don't use it often; I guess gloves would help too)
- Can you share recommendations for any of these products?- Can you recommend vendors with good prices (online or otherwise)?- Is there similar other major health risks that you'd add that I haven't considered?
I haven't had health insurance in years and was initially planning to pay the 1% income penalty next year and regroup when 2015 comes about. Now, I'm considering a HDHP with an HSA after reading this: http://www.madfientist.com/ultimate-retirement-account/ Based on plans from http://www.ehealthinsurance.com, if I sign up for a 2013 HDHP (that should be valid throughout 2014) for ~$60/mo., I'll save $100 over the cheapest 2014 plans. Whether that plan & HSA will be valid past 2015 is unclear.
I'm not the most savy with all the new laws and am wondering how all of you guys plan to handle it. Any clever hacks that I'm not considering?Where do you hunt for the best plans & prices?How about some high-earning/low-fee HSA's?
http://robrhinehart.com/?p=424http://robrhinehart.com/?p=298Looks like this is debatable, but as a nutritious time & money saver, I imagine it's something that Tynan has already researched. What do you guys think?
Hey Tynan,When looking at lendstats, I can't seem to make any combination of filters produce a significant amount of loans that reach anywhere near 15% return. Here's an example of what I've got so far, can you help explain why the returns shown aren't higher and what you're doing differently?
Thanks man, I really need to get on this before I miss out on my sign up bonus. Also, how often to promotional bonuses come up for existing members? I remember you mentioning that you often hold your profits to reinvest during promos.
I've caught at least 3 new people in the forum this year claiming to have a Rialta, so I wanted a headcount to connect faces to names and share experiences. Here's a photo album of my build: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10100818256773744.3282966.8329234&type=1&l=2aa5d7cf57
Current known owners to be updated: Me, Tynan, Brian, Paul Newcomb? (unconfirmed), Joe in Portland, Hysul (08 Coachman Freedom Express), Shacky (2009 Rialta), Robert Crouse (www.cccgis.com/Rialta.htm), Jason Martin ('95 FD), Dave Rickey (5000BTU AC and high-power antennas), Chuck in Austin ('95), Josh ('96), Mark ('97), John Donna ('96?)
Former R.I.P. owners: Austin Y., Tommy N., Peter Parker
bonus pic on how I fixed the shoddy drawers:
I tried to ask a few of these questions in the original thread I started a four months ago, but they were ignored and the thread didn't get bumped to the top of the community as it appears others do.
Tynan, I realized that Texas doesn't allow peer lending. Did you have a way of working around this when you started or were you a Cali resident by then? Can a PO Box be set up in another state, for example? Any other tips on how I might be able to get in on LC besides their secondary Folio market?
Tommy, thanks for sharing your investment strategies in the earlier thread. How would I find and get started with a foreclosure flipping group like yours?
Anyone have experience in investing money through a hard money/private money broker?
I'm looking for hands-off or low-involvement investments and these seem like three good options; any other suggestions?
My friend Greg has been trying to sell this RV for a few months and it'll only be at this price, $2500, for a few more days before he decides to restore it to resale for a bigger profit. Though I haven't seen the RV in person, I think it's a cool deal. It's got a serious solar/electric package nice enough to run a recording studio inside. Though it's not SUPER stealthy, it's unique and may have enough headroom for tall guys and looks very roomy; I like the all-glass view from the cockpit. It needs some work, but he says he's got all the parts needed to fix it.http://eklektro.net/76gmc_solar-studio23.html
Video here: http://youtu.be/I7KRdh2dySsPics here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10100818256773744.3282966.8329234&type=1&l=2aa5d7cf57
It works great and doesn't seem to affect the Rialta negatively. I haven't weighed it in over a year, but I'd guess it's at ~7500 now with water and excluding 550lb bike, which has it's weight split with the carrier's wheel & RV when loaded. I have a leaky suspension airbag, but even flat, the rear doesn't bottom out or drag in dips. I've looked at the Pit Bull trailer restraint and the Tyre Down as options of better securing it without pulling down on suspension. Since that video, I've added self-retracting ratchet straps permanently attached to the carrier that grab a strap set up like the Tyre Down atop of my rear tire (see pictures in album) and plan to build a collapsible front chock soon. I had to take off the front fender of my bike to restrain it like I have been, but think I can make attachment for hooking on the outsides of the installed fender. Also added on the Rialta is a company logo on the doors and fleet numbers on the corners to appear more "utility van".