Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Funny how it works!

When I didn't have the wind generator up I hated the high wind around here. Now I think its a good thing (Especially when its cloudy like it is now.)

When I didn't have solar panels I hated the heat of the summer sun beating down. Now I think its a good thing (Especially when there is no wind.)

When I don't have rain catchment l hate the rainy days, but after I do get it then I'll think its a good thing. (Especially when I'm about out of water.)

I was about out of drinking water and won't risk driving the falcon down south to get any since I don't have a spare and have a knot the size of a hard ball on one of the front tires. The water in my tank comes from the Cowboy Mine water well, but they sell it as non potable water even though some hearty souls are known to drink it as is. I chlorinate it when I get it delivered here, but the taste is pretty bad before or after the chlorination. (using common household bleach (non scented and no additives) @ 1 Tsp per 5 gallons of water). Anyway since I don't have the water from the tank hooked up to this trailer yet (but may in the future) I made a couple of adapters to allow me to use the water filter from the kitchen sink' filter to filter the tank water for drinking. See picture above. No more worry about running out of drinking water and I can still use that same filter on the sink by removing the adapters.

For those of you that don't know trash is a real problem down here. Paper can be burned, aluminum cans can be taken several places for recycle, but there is no place to dispose of steel cans or glass. That just keeps building up. Plastic can be burned, but some people bust a gut over the mention of that so I won't say what I do with it. See picture above.

 In my case Ms Pepper loves to raid the pit I keep the steel cans and glass in and scatter the cans everywhere. See picture above. She also likes to scatter stainless steel bowls and about everything else you can imagine everywhere to. See picture above. My intentions were to keep the burn barrel for paper only so every now and then I could use the ashes as fertilizer, but considering I don't have a safe place to store the cans to keep Pepper from them I've started putting them in the burn barrel to. That means I'll have to sort them out once I start using the ashes for fertilizer. Maybe she won't mess with burned cans???

And for the weather around here now? See pictures below.


  1. Hi (sorry, follow your blog, but don't know your name)

    Have you thought of doing your own recycling?

    Squash the cans flat - that should stop Ms Pepper creating so much havoc - and they're eaier to put in your pit;

    If you're going to be building any foundations in hte future, break your bottles into those foundations and add your cement mixture on top of them;

    Newpapers can be shredded and wet (with some of your precious water which is then squeezed out) and can be used to make fire bricks or you could add it to your compost heap / mixed in with your soil for your veggie patch (?) (I'm sure if you Google it you'll find somewhere in the US of A which sells the molds to make the bricks)

    Plastics - I cut the tops off and pierce holes in the bottom and use them as seed trays

    And of course, all your green waste should go to your compost heap :-)

    Nothing more of an eyesore than a landfill site :-)


  2. I really like the pics. Nothing like the "magnificent desolation" of the open desert.
    I envy you' tffnguy. The hardships you have to endure are worth the "freedom and independence" you have.

  3. Hey David, glad all is going well for you, except for the trach thing. It seems to me that you have had an excessive amount of rain this year. Is that correct or am way off base?

  4. Dani, my name is David. Good points you have there. At one time back in Plano I experimented with using two liter plastic bottles for building a solar heating system and had pretty good results with it. What I did was drill a hole in the bottoms large enough for the neck of another one to fit through. Then I ran half inch black pipe through the center of them and added reflective film to the bottom half to reflect the sun back on the pipe. It would heat liquid to well over 150 degrees for heating. I finally scrapped that for poly carbonate tubes meant for covering florescent bulbs and that worked well to. Matter of fact at one time I got the water temp up to 197 degrees by not removing the heat while the water was circulating. That system did a good job of heating a 10x12 room when there was full sun, but in Plano there are far more cloudy days than there are here and it proved to not be a good system for there. Unfortunately I couldn't bring that array with me so it wound up in the landfill there. It should have worked great down here. I may start working with the plastic bottle like that down here again.

    As for the news paper I don't get them of course, but do get a lot of junk mail fliers that could be used. I know that could be tightly rolled and be used as fire logs so may try that. Smashing the steel cans? Hadn't thought about that, but will try it and see how that works. I don't plan to pour a foundation though so crushing the glass wouldn't work for me. I'll have to come up with another solution for that.

    Captain, If I couldn't gripe about something I wouldn't be me. :) RN will be bringing me two new tires on his next visit down here at the first part of Sept and I can get them mounted down here so that should take care of the tire problem at least for a while. Mean wile its tough going, but nothing I can't live with.

    DD, yes there has been an excessive amount of rain and some of the long timers seem to agree that they can't remember so much rain in the years past. Too bad I don't have catchment setup yet!

  5. Pepper. I don't know what to tell you about her, David. She gets into more stuff than any dog I've ever had.

    Your post is making me move the wind back up my list with the solar plans and water catchment is right behind clearing the encroaching brush from the road on my To Do! list when I get out there.

    Great idea about using the filter for making the water more palatable. I have a Katadyn filter, but using that faucet filter is brilliant as well as less expensive.

  6. the desert rose, I was planning on buying a filter to use for that, but there seems to be an abundance of filter cartridges for the one that goes on the faucet so I figured I'd use it.

    I'd say having both solar and wind is a good idea now that it has been cloudy. My neighbor has been having to run his generator to charge his batteries and I've been doing fine with what little the panels are putting out and the wind. It had cleared off this morning and was calm, but has clouded back up now with a lot of haze. Once again the wind is up so I'm good to go. I'd highly recommend a charger like the one I built for the times when its cloudy and no wind, because I'd much rather run it 20 minutes to top off the batteries than run a generator for hours using a battery charger. A lot of times when its cloudy there is wind so the wind genny really shines in cases like that.

  7. Is it possible to take all that glass and steel can trash to a recycling bin or trash dumpster in Study Butte, Terlingua, or Alpine? If you could take a little of it with you each time you go into town, and get rid of it there, you wouldn't have to trash up your desert home.

  8. Allen, not unless I were to do it in secret and it I got caught no telling what might happen. I tried to make a deal with a couple of the businesses in SB to ler me dump the glass and cans in their dumpster for a little $ and the answer was NO. Not sure what the reason for that was?


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