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FSG Component list and source links - One person's lack of compassion does not equal another's comfort.
One person's lack of comprehension does not equal another's consent.
FSG Component list and source links
[updated! Skip to the bottom for links to items already planned for 2007]

Rarely did I speak to anyone at FSG who did not inquire where this or that came from or what it cost, I figure I may be doing a public service by posting this handy information here. My apologies if you notice that nearly all links point to pages on the same website. It's not my fault their prices are unbeatable :-)

Those flashlights I wore on my head:
Many people were curious about my headlamps. There were two I wore the most; A really incredibly small one which is incredibly bright for its size and a really big one which gives the most light I've ever seen coming from an LED flashlight of any variety.

The super small headlamp:
The photo doesn't do it justice. It is so small that if you carry one in your pocket your friends won't be asking if you are happy to see them. It operates on two 2032 type lithium coin cells, the same type used as CMOS batteries on most motherboards.

The super bright headlamp:
The following is a link to the actual headlamp many people saw me wearing at night when riding my scooter. However the one I was wearing was radically modified with 14 super bright white LEDs and a Lithium Ion battery taken from a cell phone. I have modified three of these so far and recommend them as a framework for anyone wishing to build one from scratch.

Stainless Solar Walkway Lights: 2 for $13
Most anyone who saw my campsite at night commented on the solar powered walkway lights and told me they had considered them in the past. Most people were impressed that they were still lit at 5am. They could hardly believe it when I say they cost only $13 for a *pair* of them. That was on sale at Harbor Freight Tools.com and that sale is back on! Links below


They have an even cheaper model currently priced at $25 for a pack of six, but I can't speak for their performance


The trailer on my scooter, $40
OK that was really a very handy folding hand truck that Harbor Freight also sells. It is a bargain at $60 but recently went on sale for only $40 when I bought it. With its large diameter smooth plastic wheels, it rolls easily over grass and folds so flat it is not a major space consideration in your car or tent. When I purchased it I wasn't even thinking of attaching it to the scooter but it practically seems to be designed for it. Strap on the sort of Rubbermaid tote many of us already use when camping and it converts to a shopping cart.


The Electronic Fly Swatter $3
Most people know about these but it appears most people don't take them camping They are great. You zip your tent shut, turn on ANY flashlight to draw the insects together and then kill them all in a few seconds. It is about the size of a tennis racket and runs for months on two D batteries.


Bungee cords, 20 for $8
You might be able to beat this price at Walmart. These are not heavy duty, but are handy whether you are securing tarps to your tent or solar panels to your hand truck.


Lashing Straps $1 each (12 foot long)
These simple lashing straps are very handy around the tent and you probably can't find a better price anywhere


Tarp Clips:
Their uses may not seem immediately evident but they are critical in a system I devised to secure tarps to tent rain flys to keep rain out.


Lowest price on tarps I've ever seen, and they have all grades. They are EXACTLY the same quality you see in Home Depot at almost exactly half their price!


12 volt oscillating fan $10
I paid more than this at a thrift store for the one I brought to FSG! Combined with your solar panel this can make your tent comfortable even in the day, but for simply flushing air through your tent to keep your other gear from melting you'd probably do better to buy one of those fans that clamps onto your screen with magnets


FSG 2007 plans:

Yesterday brunhildevalkyr who attended FSG 2006 with a husband two kids, a big tent and not nearly enough shade asked me if I thought I could come up with a "solar air conditioner" for her.

It's a good thing I like a challenge! After discussing various options I mentioned that she might want to look into "evaporative air conditioners," but that most of what I know about them are small units made to go into the roof areas of custom vans. I discussed how I would build one or how she could.

Armed with the type to search for, she did some hunting around and found this beauty.


It's best feature is that it doesn't use much power. Believe it or not, the small solar panels I brought to FSG 2006 would have just barely powered this at its lowest setting. The panels I plan to bring next year would run it at its highest setting and charge batteries to run it an extra six hours in the evening at that rate.


6 Rubber Duckies or Leave a Rubber Ducky
browneyedgirl65 From: browneyedgirl65 Date: June 28th, 2006 03:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
Electronic fly-swatters? Never heard of such a thing! Wow :-)
fixx From: fixx Date: June 30th, 2006 09:50 am (UTC) (Link)
I've *heard* (but don't necessarily believe) that they are also popular with the BDSM crowd. I've accidentally shocked myself a few times. It isn't real pleasant and yet, it isn't enough to make me think you could use this to do more than irritate an attacker.
vvalkyri From: vvalkyri Date: June 29th, 2006 10:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Sounds like you made a pretty neat campsite!

So you were connecting the fan to a solar panel?
fixx From: fixx Date: June 29th, 2006 11:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yes. I did not post links to the exact solar panel I have as it appears harbor freight discontinued it, and they only ones they have right now are not such a good bargain. I know where to get much better solar panels for less money per watt online than even the sale price of the current models available at harbor freight.

At FSG I actually attached solar panels to the scooter by means of that trailer (maybe you did not read the whole post?) Anyway it worked remarkably well but I'd like to do things differently next time I try to go solar with the scooter, higher density panels of the same physical size would be good. They will cost a lot more but now that I rode around with it a bit I know that I can do it without wrecking the panels.
fixx From: fixx Date: June 30th, 2006 09:58 am (UTC) (Link)
Forgot to comment on the "neat campsite". Every time I set up I set up my tent and equipment pretty much the same way as last time and each time I come up with a minor improvement I photograph it and save it for future study. I also brush up on the photos before the next time I camp. In this way it is in a constant state of improvement, It also has the advantage of feeling really familiar and homey right away.

Most people comment on how inviting it looks and if they are lucky enough to spend the night with me (Did I say that aloud? Shame on me!) they also comment on how spacious and comfortable it feels for a mere "5 man dome tent" because I make very efficient use of space. The first mistake they make is assuming that it costs a lot or that it all takes up a lot of space. It really doesn't' because a lot of the gear is actually used in my home, my car, my van, my bedroom, its really very space and cost effective. They key is to have a reusable packing list and start gathering stuff together a couple weeks in advance so nothing important gets left out.

That's an idea. I should probably post a photo or two of what a FIXX style campsite really looks like.
vvalkyri From: vvalkyri Date: June 30th, 2006 12:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
i think people might be interested, yes.
6 Rubber Duckies or Leave a Rubber Ducky