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Sunday, December 12, 2010


SAM gained weight since returning from Oklahoma...ME too.

Mechanically and electrically, SAM is ready to Roll. Have been selecting and packing supplies, clothing, tools, computer, water, tent, sleeping bag, .etc. etc. Yesterday, SAM was loaded up.

Do not have a scale large enough to weigh SAM, but estimate her to be close to 200 pounds (the original stroller was rated at 75 pounds).

GREEN and RED were both fully charged at 38.8 volts (sure wish I had an ammeter). GREEN again got the job to power SAM's Hub Motor.

It was beginning to rain rather hard when SAM & ME steped out of SAM's Place. We first Walked and Rolled over to the Bicycle Shop on Iowa Street where We purchased a third bicycle Headlight. SAM now has three Headlights, two RED Tail Lghts, and three AMBER Side Lights.
All the lights can be constant beam or flashing.

SAM is well lighted fore and aft and from the sides. The short days and long nights dictate that We have ample lighting...Oh yes, Me's helmet has a RED flashing light on the back and a WHITE forward facing light. Don't plan on travelling in the dark, but more than once WE have been caught out on the road after dark, being unable to find a place to stop for the night.

It is for this reason We built SAM's Protective Cover, which can be erected in a couple minutes.

SAM's Headlights are located inside Her cover, giving good lighting for cooking, reading, etc.

Have determined, however, that We must modify the Side Enclosure to give full 360 degree protection from wind and rain. Trying to find a 6 x 10 ft piece of lightweight tenting material, which will be "snapped" onto SAM's main Protective Cover. It all fits into a bag 5 x 7 inches weighing about 2 pounds and hangs on SAM's 90 Watt Solar Panel Frame for quick and easy access. Four lightweight telescoping poles affixed to SAM hold the Cover in place.

The 6 miles SAM & ME travelled yesterday is nearly all up hill. GREEN was therefore powering the Hub Motor most of the 90 minutes it took us in the pouring rain to walk home. Upon arriving, GREEN checked in with 36.5 volts; i.e., GREEN consumed 2.3 volts in 90 minutes. Approximately 1.0 volts remained before Controller Shutdown on GREEN.

So, climbing hills and SAM loaded to the gills, GREEN is projected to be available to drive SAM's Hub Motor for about 2 hours. On the flat, GREEN is projected to provide power for
3 - 3.5 hours...

RED, meanwhile, charged to 38.8 volts two days ago, had degraded - while at rest - to 38.3 volts. Being a larger Batter Pack (GREEN = 8 amp hours ; RED = 12 amp hours), RED should be counted on for 3 - 3.5 hours up hill and 4 - 5 hours on the flat.

Oh, yes...not to forget the WIND. Highway 101, our route around the Olympic Penninsula borders the Pacific Ocean where the "Pineapple Express" roars ashore from the Hawaiian Islands across the Pacific Ocean, slamming up against the Olympic Mountains...thus creating the Olympic Rain Forest. Pineapple Express is historically WARM and MOIST Weather Systems bringing heavy rain and when confronted by COLD Canadian Air, heavier yet snowfall to the Pacific Northwest.

SAM and ME will be walking directly INTO the Pineapple Express WINDS which can reach sustained 30 - 50 mph for days on end. Through all this, Me CANNOT push SAM. GREEN and RED must power SAM through the winds, which can consume power as though on steep hills.

All in all, SAM's power availability projection is marginal at best.

SAM must lose weight...and a lot of it.

Went through this last Summer. Decision was to add the Van...NOT THIS TIME...

Will most likely reduce clothing to a couple changes...just have to walk in the "wet" stuff.
Will most likely delete the air mattress.
Will most likely eliminate most of the "tools" (and hope for only minor breakdowns).
Will most likely delete all cans or bottles...use ONLY dry goods for meals.
Will most likely eleminate the Umbrella and remove the Umbrella Mounting stuff.
Will most likely wear Leaf Bags instead of Rain Gear.
Will most likely eliminate the GPS.
Will most likely add 1 gallon more water (weight = 6 pounds). needed for cooking.
Will most likely add 1 Water Purifier - @ $65.00, which is not available -.
Will most likely put NEW batteries into RED - @ $60.00 each x 3 - which is not available.
Will most likely further modify SAM's Protective Cover. If We can somehow make a COMPLETE enclosure; i.e., add snap-on floor and full side protection, we can theoretically eliminate the tent. Finding a dry place for Me's sleeping bag will be a challenge.
Then ... We shall see...

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