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12.03.2016 admin
Perhaps one my favorite things about our tiny house (other than falling asleep to the sound of rain on a steel roof) is that it is entirely off grid. Christopher and I are both environmentalists of sorts, having spent chunks of our lives studying, researching, and telling stories about humans’ interactions with our natural resources and waste. Park County, Colorado gets an average of 246 sunny days each year, so solar power was an obvious choice for our electric needs. Portability: The unit is self-contained and on wheels, designed to be easily moved from one location to the next. Because of the long, cold winters in the Colorado mountains, we opted for a propane heater in our tiny house.
As you can see, the 1500 watt Classic SolMan system provides more than enough electricity for all of these needs (should we be running them all at once), and the 300 amp hours of battery—since it’s recommended that we only drain the batteries about halfway but no less than 60%, that leaves us with 150-200 usable amp hours—will keep us going overnight.
The SolMan is not well suited for any electric needs that involve heating things—including toaster ovens, hot plates, electric tea pots, electric-powered heaters or water heaters.
In conclusion, I’d like to stop for just a moment to express my utter amazement that we, as human beings, can harness the energy of the sun. Hi Weston, yes this has been on our mind and we have taken many precautions to keep the unit safe.
The concept of living in a tiny house on a small a acreage still allows you to build separate buildings that are Eco friendly and yet liveable spaces yearround. There is a solar heated shower bag that could create a hot shower without an electricity through your warm months. I have been keeping tabs on your build and I’m really impressed with what you have done and are doing.
For the past 12 years I’ve called a 32 foot 5th wheel home and really don’t understand why most people wire their tiny homes for just 120 volts AC. Sorry I hate to be that guy, but the least you could do is mention your sponsorship in the piece… especially when it is getting re-blogged around the Tiny House community. Also, I think it’s important to be clear that the blog post above is not an advertisement.
Also, we checked out your blog and are looking forward to following your own tiny house build! Thanks for this kind help and information about these tiny house.Its seems quite interesting also in their surrounding areas. P-PODs are designed to be 100% off grid, with a 480 watt solar PV electrical system and a solar hot water system included with the kits.
If you are interested in a P-Pod or polehouse, Tim and his company will work with you on your customized design with erasable vellum plans for each platform. Because they can be easily assembled, disassembled and moved by an unskilled labor force, the P-POD is becoming popular in Third World countries. This summer we finally completed our floating 16×16 deck using heavy concrete deck piers, which are heavy concrete blocks with a cross cut on top to align and fasten the supporting 2x4s. Just Tim scamming people for deposits and claiming glory for himself from ideas he has used from others.

Part of this tiny house experiment has always been about learning to lessen our own impact. This means that we can move it along with our house, should we ever choose a new spot on the land, or to move it to a new location.
While I don’t actually understand what any of that means (which is exactly why we chose not to design the solar installation ourselves), what we do understand is that the unit is made from top-of-the-line materials. We’re eventually planning to build a small, simple shed that we can roll the unit into when we are gone for long periods of time. Seeing the SolMan work up close still feels a bit like watching a scene from Star Trek or Spaceship Earth. Definitely going to use this option along with a Honda gas inverter for those times when you require that circular saw or other power tools. I think that once my family has seen the potential of downsizing and living large, we will begin our own Tiny House project. I like how you are demonstrating change by giving us substance and reason and hope for a better future without being a prisoner to this society which is going the wrong way? But I wonder why you are just running 120 AC in your home for your lighting and power needs.
With what’s out there for low voltage lighting and LED lighting there is no reason to use 120 volt AC for lighting if you are living off grid or on grid for that matter. Yes, SolMan is indeed a sponsor (as indicated by their logo on the sidebar of the blog) and while we can’t say exactly how much we paid for the unit, I can tell you that it was still a stretch for us.
The P-PODs are engineered and constructed of steel, with EPS foam bonded to metal studs to create a composite material for floor, wall and roof panels, making them super strong, lightweight, easy to assemble and recyclable. Currently, Tim is working on several projects in Africa, manufacturing and assembling tens of thousands of P-Pods.
Come to find out the license agreement Tim Cornell signed, he didn’t own any of the patents or technology (another reason the contract was broken). Perhaps we can find some people who have had success with buying and constructing the homes. The link provided does not work and all of the the other envision global companies on google seem to be large companies that are prospering and wouldn’t make any comment here, but simply move forward.
It can withstand temperatures of -70 F (important for us up in the mountains) and is weather resistant, so that we don’t have to worry about leaving it outside during Colorado thunderstorms or blizzards. For the time being we are hauling our own water and heating it on the stove (if we do decide to install a water heater, propane-fueled models are available).
If we do install a water heater it will likely be propane-fueled, and we’re fine to grill our toast and heat our tea on the stovetop.
Huge gratitude to the folks at Sol-Solutions, and other solar companies far and wide, for doing this work to develop easy solutions for zero-emissions, renewable power. While I don’t think it will fit our needs and I think it is a bit out of our budget even, it is a great resource for a ton of other things.
If you are off grid you are wasting power going from 12 volt DC to 120 volt AC most of your lighting needs.

And if you are on grid and have the power go out you will still have your 12 volt lighting if you have a battery backup in your lighting system like most RVs do.
We’ll be paying it off for the rest of the year and, Yes, we would have paid full price for it and fully think that the unit is worth its price tag, if you don’t have the expertise to build a similar system on your own, or the desire to figure it out!
Even if we had built our own permanent installation instead of going with the portable SolMan, we prob would have gone with a system mounted on the ground rather than on our roof. One couple’s attempt to build a Tiny House with no building experience raises questions about sustainability, good design, and the changing American Dream. P-POD units can be stacked 2 or 3 tall, or spread out in any configuration such as townhouses, duplexes, apartment buildings, etc. He still owes my company over $25k for the roof, floor and wall panels we delivered to his warehouse in Hillsboro, Or. The unit’s portability also means that we can use it for other purposes—like powering our video equipment on a remote shoot.
To power our house, which is wired to AC, we simply rolled the SolMan over to the outlet and…plugged it in. A large deck wrapped around a tiny house is still a living space during the 3 seasons and the warm sunny days of winter. This is all info that we learned on the fly while researching our options and feel that it’s useful to share with others. We’ve been assured that the batteries and all of the parts can stand below-freezing temperatures, so we think that we should be fine. They are built as a 3-D grid system that simply snaps and locks together fast, enabling a house to be assembled in only hours including the complete foundation system. He was the sole reason for thousands of South African’s losing out at an opportunity to have affordable housing that would have increased their level of lively hood ten fold. And—most importantly—that we can change the positioning of the unit to track the sun throughout the day to get maximum light exposure.
The main reason I chose not to, was because I wasn’t sure if down the road I might want or need to plug into the grid. No infrastructure is required to assemble these homes onsite, such as bulldozers, backhoes, electricity, water or concrete trucks. Lesley isn’t the only one that has been taken by this guy…He is a major manipulator! Seriously, it was as easy as that, which after a year of building a house and realizing that nothing is as simple as it seems, was quite refreshing.
The Solman makes it real easy toj ust plug in the house and go, so I have no complaints at the moment.

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