A Practical Guide for Permaculturists Living Free

Posts tagged “DIY

Build a Forge

20140324-231433.jpg
Continued from the next page:
…red heat, generally known as a cherry red, it is in a fit state to work.

Sorry about the picture quality….

Got this off an old illustrated DIY book called The Home-Lovers Encyclopedia with tons of stuff from making a chicken coop to making a proper lounge chair! Look for it online from the UK.

The plan is pretty simple for the forge, as long as you know how to work metal a bit. All it shows is how to make the forge. I will find other plans for the bellow or a hand cranked fly-wheel blower and post it up at some point.


We Need Help and Partners: Lets Make A Sustainable Community

DSC06670

Photo taken at Envision Festival 2011

I’m a traveler, I’ve been around the globe a couple times.  I’ve lived in the country but mostly in big cities (New York, Paris, Barcelona, Bogota, London…).  I work with my hands and know a little bit about everything I touch, I like to learn and I work hard…too hard sometimes but my dreams come true!

I finally found the love of my life, we’ve been married a year and some, been together 5 years or so.  She is a traveler as well and we plan on bringing up our children around self sustainable communities, the festival world and traveling.  Our philosophy on schools teeters from life school for reading, writing, and maths, the rest will from experience and living closer to nature (We will never know how much of what is written in history books is even true) to home school or entering them into the school system at least in the beginning, so they could make a choice later.

Something that always has stuck with me is that there seems to be something royally wrong in the world, if we have to work for someone else our whole lives.  For what?  They seem to tell us, go to school, get good grades so you can get into a good college so that you can get a high paying job!  Ok true, that is a descent path to a high paying job, but that job seems to be only so that we can pay higher taxes, consume more “things” that are taxed several times, to live a so called comfortable life that leaves us with not much left.  So we keep working because now we have high bills for a lot of these “things”.  I don’t know, if you don’t see that we kind of have become slaves, it’s ok we don’t have to agree on everything.  I can admit that I am a slave of the medical insurance most of the time.

To start our free living, we started looking for land to establish a sort of art collective/community around what would become a learning center for three different aspects of life we believe are most important for us:
1. Art
2. Mind and Body (the physical and none-physical)
3. DIY Sustainability

These three points are very broad, I had to come up with a named category to bunch everything we want to be around into just three sections.

  • The arts are for anything one could consider art, from oil paint to writing to welding to theatre or music and so on…
  • Mind and Body is yoga, multiple dimension theories, tai-chi, lucid dreaming, massage, capoeira….
  • DIY Sustainability is for all things sustainable, permaculture, natural, up-cycling and more…

For now the Idea is to be in the woods within 2hours of New York City, off the water/sewage/electric/gas…grid creating a platform for learning and teaching the skills mentioned above, growing our own food and living as free and moneyless as possible. As the winter sets in, and this little something that’s always in the back of my mind about leaving the US gets louder, I’m thinking Spain, Portugal or Latin America.

The way I’ve imagined this place is everyone involved gets a plot of land to live on. Your plot of land is yours to build what you wish as a small dwelling, as long as it is self sustainable, built with available materials and/or up-cycled materials.  The point is to get off the grid in a very affordable way, in order to show it to others. In this vision I have seen converted trucks and buses or motorhomes, tree houses, adobe homes, earthships, straw-bail houses, and workshops!

Anyway I could go on and on about this as the idea has been morphing in my head for about 8 years now…. but we have finally pushed the ball and it’s rolling!

Along with becoming off grid we want to take a caravan of people (like an old circus or carnival) around different continents learning and teaching free living skills, from time to time, perhaps in the festival season.

If you’re interested in more info and want to help us or join us in this adventure, this is where we are:
http://thepeoplescaravan.wordpress.com/
https://offgridders.wordpress.com/

Please get in touch, we’re looking for serious people who truly want to live a different way!

Thx, and please pass it on so the ball can keep rolling!!!!

Greg


Growing Food All Year in New York City

We’re in transit….just came back from an 8 months honey moon.  We’re now subletting a place with a small yard but winter has set in.  Come March we are hitting the road again looking to lear anything we can from people living off the grid so that we can post the knowledge and easy “Do It Yourself” plans.

There are tons of different way to get yourself off the grid “on the cheap” and as you may already know this is what this blog is about.  Sharing easily understandable knowledge and blue prints for all of us out there who are not millionaires!

So for now, if you want to stay in the big city and grow your own food, lettuce, strawberries, herbs, kale… it is possible even in the confines of a small apartment without a yard or balcony.  Hell you can even grow food if you don’t have a window in your small apartment with grow LED strips!

window garden1

Urban farming is where we need to head in cities if we want to survive, along with wasting and using less.  Roof top farms, taking over public land to turn into community gardens and window farming.  Window farming is something everyone can start doing on their own, save some cash and start saving the planet!

Click here for the plans they’re easy to build and cost very little especially if you upcycle most of the materials!


Rocket Stove Water Heater Redux

Here an excellent little rocket stove water heater…. any big city apartment design are welcome please.


The GEET engine plans (for small engine conversion)

So I’ve been interested in this for a long while, but never looked into it too much.  I would like to convert a small engine one of these days soon….but in the mean time here are Paul Pantone’s plans: (Click here for the PDF) You can also find more info all over the net about Paul and his invention.

If anyone out there have any experience making this engine conversion, please tell us!


Home made mosquito Trap.

North America is home to more than 100 species of mosquitoes, and some may be more attracted to these homemade mosquito traps than others.

Mosquito

Items needed:

1 cup of water
1/4 cup of brown sugar
1 gram of yeast
1 2-liter bottle

HOW:
1. Cut the plastic bottle in half.
2. Mix brown sugar with hot water. Let cool. When cold, pour in the bottom half of the bottle.
3. Add the yeast. No need to mix. It creates carbon dioxide, which attracts mosquitoes.
4. Place the funnel part, upside down, into the other half of the bottle, taping them together if desired.
5. Wrap the bottle with something black, leaving the top uncovered, and place it outside in an area away from your normal gathering area. (Mosquitoes are also drawn to the color black.)

mosquito trapILLUSTRATION: CHRISTINE ERIKSON

Change the solution every 2 weeks for continuous control.

A similar but only a bit more complicated idea can be found at Mother Earth News.

Courtesy of  The Survivalists Blog.

 


Refrigeration Without Electricity

Zeer-Pot

Zeer Pots or “pot in pot” refrigeration, is an old technique reinvented by Mohammed Bah Abba of northern Nigeria. It is a refrigerator than runs without electricity. “A key reason for the pot-in-pot’s success is the lack of electricity in most of the northern rural communities, for without electricity there can be no refrigeration.”

There is evidence of many different evaporative cooling system throughout the world, some 3000BC.

Here´s how it works and how you can make one.

You take a smaller pot and put it inside a larger pot. Fill the space in between the two pots with wet sand. Cover the pots with a wet cloth. When the water evaporates, it pulls the heat out with it. This simple alternative refrigeration unit uses basic laws of physics to keep the inner vessel cool.

Explanation on wiki

Supplies needed:

  • 2 clay pots that are able to nest inside of each other (round pots work best). They need to be clay/earthenware and MUST be unglazed.
  • Sand– enough to fill in the space between the 2 pots
  • A piece of burlap or thick blanket

How to on wiki

More on Zeer…..

http://www.treehugger.com/kitchen-design/upscale-zeer-for-urban-kitchens-is-a-cool-idea.html

http://www.greenrightnow.com/welcome/2011/01/19/worldwatch-institute-program-highlights-solutions-to-world-hunger/