Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Welcome Addition

Yesterday we were given a free, two-axle trailer for moving heavy items such as rock and water, thanks to our friend Dennis, of concrete-bubble home fame.

Dennis also donated three battery cores, which will help with our next trip to the battery supplier.

In other news, we finally received our PV order today, after MUCH difficulty.

UPS Freight and West Texas Freight had lost the pallet of panels for 24 hours, and then tried to double charge us on shipping, but we straightened everything out in the end. 
We are also proud to present for the first time, The All Energies SUN STATION!

We have designed and manufactured a ready-to-go power system for anyone looking for reliable renewable, quiet, clean power.

The prototype pictured above is rated at 1.8 kilowatts, and was made to run our client's Airstream RV including a powerful, aftermarket air conditioning unit.

The Sun Station 1800 will be on display at the 2012 Green Scene, actively providing power for the public address system and musicians' equipment.

We designed it with the goal of creating a self-contained power plant that can be easily expanded, and that will last a lifetime.  We will be offering the Sun Station in a variety of sizes, rated in watts. Come check out Version 1.0 at the Green Scene in Terlingua Ghost Town, April 7th.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

In Memoriam

Sprocket was adopted from the Heart of the Catskills Humane Society in Delhi, New York, in April of 2009

Sara had been in an awful, head-on collision a week prior.  car-accident-2009.jpgNot only was she in a lot of physical pain, but she was very depressed.  When we went to the shelter, we weren't sure what we were looking for, and we met a lot of very nice dogs.

But one young dog, called Marley by the staff, seemed to have an extra spark of intelligence.  He was easy-going and relaxed with us right away, and didn't seem to pay the other dogs much attention while they barked at us passing by.

We brought him home within a week, and he immediately bonded deeply with the family.  Ozzy was right away his best friend and mentor (and sometimes accomplice).

baby_sprocket_002.jpgIn June of 2009, Sprocket was eight or nine months old, weighed 45 pounds,and rode over 2,200 miles across country on our laps in Old Smokey, the formerly powered by woodgas Ford Ranger.

sprocket-driving-our-truck.jpgsprocket-jacksonville-illinois.jpgSprocket flourished in the desert.  He loved the wide open spaces and the wildlife.  He went on adventures every day, and walked hundreds of miles exploring every tiny niche of our properties.

sprocket-at-brite-ranch-capote-peak.jpgHe played tag with javelinas, and ran with the mule deer.  He brought back several fallen antlers to show us.  His favorite activity was chasing the hawks and buzzards in the sky.  We encouraged him to do this because it was a potentially endless source of exercise, and also because he would chase the birds out of the sky who were too interested in our chickens.

The worst pain comes from knowing what his little sister Naia will be missing.  Sprocket was a great nurturer and protector of baby animals.  Once we watched some baby goats for our neighbor, and he loved them so much that he chased the songbirds away, trying to protect them.

sprocket-baby-sitting-goats.JPGHe was actively teaching this to Naia.  Naia seems to have a strong bird-dog line in her blood, and she loves to flush quail.  Once, just a few short months ago, Naia actually pounced on a quail, and almost caught it, but Sprocket sprang into action and bit her leg.  She was so shocked (Sprocket had never so much as nipped at her before) she forgot the bird and it got away.  I was confident that Sprocket would teach her all about protecting the chickens.

sprocket-in-the-grass.JPGNow she has no older, desert dog to guide her.  She's never seen a snake.  Sprocket knew them very well, from an unfortunate incident where I had to bludgeon one to death in front of him.  He knew what they looked like, where they would hide, that they could move quick as lightning, and most importantly he knew to give them a wide berth.
sprocket-and-arick-keeping-warm.JPGNaia was supposed to learn from his experience, but now she must stumble through this dangerous desert alone, with no guidance or doggy-wisdom.  She is goofy and over-confident, bossy and clumsy.  Sprocket was fleet, lithe, clever, and watchful.  I hope the desert embraces her, though clearly there are no guarantees in life.

Sprocket-and-Naia-326.JPGSince the day he came home with us, Sprocket has been our constant companion.  He has traveled with us thousands of miles, met so many people, and shared so many adventures with us.  He was truly an irreplaceable member of our family.  There will never be another like him.  He loved so deeply.

RIP-Sprocket 2012-03-13 002.JPGWe will always love you, Sprocket, and cherish your memory.  You were a great dog, and the best friend anyone could hope for. 


Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Something Terrible

We are sad and angry to report that Sprocket was killed today.

He was run over by somone, who was speeding down the road to haul water for her trees and concrete ponds and so-called 'bird sanctuary'.

She didn't even stop after she hit him.  In fact, she kept hauling the coliform-rich Ranch water all day.

Casey and I were preparing to leave San Angelo after our battery acquisition and some other shopping when we got a tearful call from Casey's Mom.  Kathie and Bob unfortunately had to deal with the situation.

We are in so much pain and so angry about this.  Naia is in shock, hiding under and behind things, and refusing water.  There are no words to express our feelings.

Monday, March 5, 2012

San Angelo Battery Run

We are going to Hawkins Battery in San Angelo early tomorrow morning. We are stocking up on deep cycle Trojan T145s, a well trusted unit, though this will be our first time using this battery or this supplier.  We are hoping everything goes according to plans. 
Our previous supply of 100 lb, sealed, lead acid AGM blems is currently out. We were big fans of these sealed AGM batteries, as they held up great and were a lot lower-maintenance than a vented battery, but we are going to deal with the changes accordingly. 

Wish us luck.