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Thursday, December 2, 2010


SAM & ME are signed up to participate in the Mt. Vernon, Washington Run / Walk for Arthritis on Saturday at 8:30 am.

Was considering walking SAM down to Mt. Vernon tomorrow, but as it is nearly 30 miles one way and day-light is short this time of year, decided to go fetch the trailer and drive SAM down and back. Trailer is on consignment but not yet sold...asking $1,000 (cost $1,800).

It will be SAMs first public introduction. Sure, she and I have walked over 1,000 miles in the past year in and around Bellingham...but no one has actually been introduced to SAM. This will be her big entrance.

The past two days, I have designed and built into SAM, a complete weatherproof enclosure. It is erected in less than two minutes. In the event of rain or high winds or just a rest period, I can unpack and erect SAMs protective system...which:

1. Has room for ME to sit or lie down...handy Fleece blanket covers legs and shoes for warmth.
Air mattress is also handy for lying down. Sleeping Bag is 6" away under the Solar Panel.

1.A. SAM also has a large tent - which we have used many times already - into which both SAM & I fit comfortable and safely...takes 10 minutes or so to set up the tent.

2. Has a table for SAMs Butane Stove...fully protected from wind and rain and plenty of room for ventilation and "pot handling". Two gallons of water are within 6" of the stove...also a fire extinguisher. Pots etc., are handled in the Butane Stove storage box lying on top of the Solar Panels (which are covered and protected by Mean Green Naugahyde when not in use).

3. Complete system snaps together using SAMs Solar Panels and a couple telescoping rods.

4. Packs into a neat waterproof bag only 8" long by 5" Diameter. Bag hangs on SAMs Solar Panel with Velcro (screwed into the Solar Panel Frames...NO MORE ADHESIVE VELCRO).

5. When erected, SAM & ME are both protected and comfy.

6. I sit on a heavy-duty plastic box containing tools and food, topped with a Sailing Cushion.

7. If desired, ME can take a nap sitting on the box, using SAMs "down" pillow which is stored under the Solar Panels.

8. SAMs "headlights" are INSIDE the protective enclosure, giving plenty of light.

9. SAM also has two 3-way LED lights permanently mounted under the Solar Panels for lighting SAMs internal storage areas. Sitting on the box, everything in SAMs storage area under the Solar Panels is easily within reach (both battery packs are also mounted in there).

All in all, it is kinda neat...compact...functional...looks good...and really works.

It has been a kick to design, develop, build, and drive SAM.

I look forward to her Saturday introduction.

Numerous detailed pics will accompany this Blog after the Arthritis Run / Walk.

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