My Useless PV statistics

Monday, March 11th, 2013 Data, My PV Solar Stuff 10 Comments

Here are some statistics for my PV system as at March 2013 (Since June 2011).

Total generated since June 2011 is 8360kWh. I have exported 6994kWh and self consumed the difference, 1366kWh. I have imported 2780kWh for the same period.

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Suzuki Model Year Codes and VIN

Monday, November 14th, 2011 Tech Articles 55 Comments

Have you ever wondered how you can identify the model year of a Suzuki motorcycle or ATV?

Suzuki assigns a year letter code to the end of each model name. Perhaps you’ve noticed this letter designation in your Suzuki repair manual or owners manual but weren’t sure what it meant.

Here’s how it works: If you own a 1999 Suzuki TL1000S X or a TL1000R X or a GSXR600X etc the X at the end tells us it was sold as a 1999 model year. The year of manufacture is not necessarily the model year. Usually around October the new models are released, so it’s possible to have a built date of say 10/98 and have an X (1999) model even though it was built in 1998.

You might notice that “I”, “O”, “Q”, “U” and “Z” are missing from the codes. The letters I, O & U cannot be used in a Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) at all. The digit / number 0 and letters U & Z are not used in the year model code.

There is more VIN information here on a Wikipedia – Vehicle Identification Number page.

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Sparkplug Cross Reference Charts

Sunday, November 13th, 2011 Tech Articles 2 Comments

Deciphering Sparkplug numbers.

The following charts contain information about spark plugs and their selection. You can use them to cross reference different numbers by different manufacturers. The TLS uses CR8EK or CR9EK plugs as standard. My GSXR1000K3 uses CR9E as standard.

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Two PV solar milestones reached this week

Sunday, September 11th, 2011 My PV Solar Stuff 2 Comments

I reached two (minor) milestones this week (2nd week of September 2011).

    1) I generated my 1st MWh of energy. (1,000kWh)

    2) My the solar export register value overtook and became greater than my import register value on my electricity meter. (Export 639.5kWh vs. Import 629.8kWh the import register (the import register is the total of the peak and off peak consumption. The smart meter is so smart, it can’t show me what I use in peak and off peak separately).

ATX Bench Top Power Supply

Sunday, September 11th, 2011 Arduino No Comments

I bought a Sparkfun Benchtop Power Board Kit (KIT-09774) to convert an old ATX computer power supply I have into a benchtop power supply.

I could have simply bought the power posts and mounted them directly onto the power supply cover the same as the many examples that can be found with a Google search but I liked the idea of the fuses and the fact it is a plug in job in case the power supply dies and I need to use another one.

I’m happy with the kit, it came with everything needed including a power on LED. A switch to turn the power supply off and on (via the light green wire to ground) would be a nice touch, but it’s not to difficult for me to switch the power supply on and off at the power point as needed.

Sparkfun ATX bench top kit

Sparkfun bench top power board kit components.


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"I spent most of my money on Scotch, women and cigarettes. The rest I just wasted"


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