Author name: Neal Collier

I was a teenage disc jockey. Broadcast engineer, CAF Colonel, electronics designer, corporate exec, farmer, auctioneer, historian, author, photographer, transporter, adventurer and old fart who has harnessed the sun.

Stand By 12

Stand By

I’m changing out the 5kw inverter in my boat, installing a 3.5kw unit.  Do I need less power?  No, I need an inverter that runs to spec and does not melt the rubber transformer mount when you run it over 10% for a period of time.  Good electronics, but not enough transformer.  Typical Chinese math

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Daly BMS app view

Lithium Battery Upgrade V: Gone to the Island

After much shifting of plans, The Sun King, newly equipped with a semi-massive Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP) battery stack, cast off in search of adventure and battery performance info. For review, Sun King was the next progression in my quest for electric boating.  Knightmare, my first effort, was successful, but limited in range.   No solar. 

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BMS app screen

Lithium III….It Lives! Converting from Lead-Acid to LFP in an Electric Boat

It isn’t made pretty, yet, but the Sun King’s starboard battery bank is now a functioning Lithium Iron Phosphate (LFP) high capacity unit. Let’s look at the difference. Here is the old battery: three 8v golf car batteries in series for 175 amp hours (ah).  Since we try to only use 50% of a lead

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Such a Deal 25

Such a Deal

John Kimball, owner of Sun Electronics, proclaims to offer the best deals on solar panels. Have you considered the best of the best deals? Throughout my long life I have mostly bought used vehicles and for cash.  I probably paid twice for the new Corolla my wife insisted on getting back around 1981.  Interest rate

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Fountain at James Houston Jones Park, Century, Florida

A Little Late

Hopefully, not too late. Last time I promised a series on emergency backup power, with and without solar. I also promised it would take a while because I’d need to take some pictures and make some drawings. Writing a column isn’t just writing. Writing is easy, like running off at the mouth, but people like

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