So I'm pretty much just going to dive right in... (If you want some background, check out my thread on birmingham.io).
Yesterday I spent £126.58 at Amazon purchasing the components I need for the first project in the book:
- 20w Solar Panel Battery Charging Kit with Charger Controller
- 12v 7.2Ah Universal Sealed Rechargeable Lead Acid Battery
- 10 Meters of White 1.5mm 15 Amp 3 Core Flexible Cable
- 15 Amp Terminal Strip Connector
- Assorted Electrical Clips
- PVC Electrical Insulating Tape
- Proster MS8233D Auto Ranging Digital Multimeter
I have to admit I feel that I've somewhat cheated myself by buying them all from Amazon. The original plan was to salvage as much as possible, mostly by purchasing items via eBay and/or visiting junkyards - but eBay is full of commercial sellers, with very few of the items I needed being available second hand, and I've not got very easy access to a junkyard.
With this in mind, for the sake of actually getting this whole thing started (I'm brilliant at having ideas, but never doing anything about them), I decided Amazon was a worthy compromise, which had a number of benefits such as free Prime delivery, and the ability to send back anything purchased in error (which itself is invaluable, as I really am clueless about a lot of this, and am pretty sure at least one of the items listed above is wrong).
The main change from the book is the type of battery. The book specifically dictates a car battery, probably because they'd be readily available, but they were a touch too expensive for my purposes, so I went for a generic rechargeable 12v battery instead. I'm guessing/hoping they're all mostly the same, and should work in the same way, but I guess the proof of the pudding is in the eating.
Finally, the multimeter is to replace the cheap one I already have, which is going to be hacked into the rig to measure the rate of charge, etc..
In addition to the components above, I also got couple of books:
Up until this point I'd been working from the eBook edition of the Maker's Guide (which I obtained from the Hacking Humble Book Bundle), but seeing as I was putting some physical cash into this project, I wanted a physical copy of the book.
I had originally gone with the justification that an eBook would be useless during the apocalypse, but Cos soon reminded me that the very first project in the book was based around generating electricity (not to mention it would be a lot easier to carry the world's literature on a Kindle than in paper form), so that excuse soon went out the window, and I just admitted to myself that I wanted a copy of the book to display on my shelf.
The Getting Started in Electronics book, technically, isn't needed for the project, but it had been recommended as "The" text for anyone learning electronics, and I love the idea that all the pages are hand drawn using a mechanical pencil.
Anyway, that's as far as I've gotten. The various components will be arriving over the next week, so the next stage will be to assemble them into something which is able to recharge the battery.
Watch this space.