Thursday, December 17, 2009

Making the metal rails

Dec 16: I have picked up all the aluminium angles from the University engineering stores, and have borrowed a platform drill. So the evening was spent enjoyably building the metal framework to support the panels - in freezing temperature....

I feel a sense of liberation - its been 46 yrs since I last did any metalwork, and with the right tools, it feels like a creative task - and now I am well into it, I feel less anxious about it. Also... one feels that one can make anything that one can invent - [I might make a metal gate for the house next, as it's impossible to find ready made gates that are the right size.] Many thanks to Adrian Harms for the loan of the pillar drill.
The Polycarbonate is coming soon, so that will be challenging - two glassy boxes 1.8m x 1.65m is quite an undertaking to build, and another challenge is to lift them 6 metres.

Dec 17: I have also realised that the temperature inside the polycarbonate boxes could become so excessive - perhaps 40ยบ plus which could affect the liquid tightness of the joints, or overheat the plastics.....  - that I need to have a precaution for this by permitting Ventilation. So the bottom panel will have vents, and the top panel will become a tilting panel, with settings for Winter, Equinox and Summer, allowing appropriate amounts of ventilation. There was a chance to buy an automatic solar powered ventilator fan, but this would be automatic, so I did not get it (saving £ 80).  I prefer to try ventilation settings and see the results.
For research, I prefer to have manual settings that I can experiment with, and measure resulting temperatures, at different times of year. Using a Trombe wall based on this construction, and a MVHR (heat reclaim ventilation) you could go a long way towards heating a house using this method.

Dec 18: Still very frustrated that the Polycarbonate has not arrived... I am told it will come on Monday.

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