In my experience JB Weld is the best epoxy glue that is readily available in retail stores like building supplies, automotive, hardware stores, and big-box general stores. All across the map in N.America, from what I can tell. Seems to me anybody who’s a DIYer or homesteader realizes there are a thousand different situations epoxy can be very helpful in.
It’s available in what the JB Weld company markets as a “Professional” size, with 5-ounce tubes instead of the 1-ounce tubes marketed to the general (city/suburban) ‘homeowner’.
I’ve seen the pro size sold retail for $20 locally, and the packaged double small-tube version for around $12. For what you’re spending, you get five times the amount of glue for just 1.7 times the expenditure… and the math works out to better than a three-for-one deal on the amount of glue for your money. I’m very glad I’ve bought it that way.
Bob Gallamore wrote:There are people whose words and actions made an impact and helped me make the right decisions in some very difficult situations throughout my life. It has been good to reconnect and tell them they were appreciated and that they had a positive impact on my life. That, to me, is a greater legacy than a big fat bank account for people to fight over.
Sebastian Köln wrote:EDIT: I completely forgot the important part:
A Lithium Battery pack needs a balancer and in your case also a protection circuit that cuts the power off if any cell gets discharged too much.
Sebastian, thanks — you've provided much useful info and I hope Permies members will read it and maybe follow it up, if it is apt for them. But unfortunately it's not 'in my case' since the machines belong to members of three households, none of which is my household. I believe none of these people would want to go into the innards of their power cells. They all seem to be at the point where they will buy another battery pack, or wish to know where they can by one affordably if they need it.
I’ve got friends in three different households who bought Core CGT400 battery-powered weed whackers from a local dealer. These were all the same model, known as the CGTSD Gasless Powered Trimmer and of course it came supplied with a “Power Cell” (lithium battery) and a charger.
The machines worked impressively well (I even had occasion to use one of them once, for 90 minutes or so). But, two households have had battery problems — one got a replacement a year or so into the warranty, but one was beyond warranty. The local dealer has gone out of business, so now all three households are glum and nervous. Amazon advertises the price of replacement CORE batteries at well over $200 before tax & shipping.
I’ve got Makita, Husqvarna, and Ryobi cordless equipment and have never bought any of the CORE machinery myself. On behalf of my friends, I’m asking if anyone’s got insights on this? Source(s) for the battery? Is the CORE company simply bad news and hopeless?
I have, too. Sometimes by letter or phone or email — and occasionally, if circumstances are right, by in-person visiting. People who were important or interesting to me at one stage or another in my life.
I’ve got a story about someone who reached out to me, though. This was a guy I’d known since elementary school and even after graduation from high school. We respected each other. At one point he was down on his luck, and I loaned him $500 (that he said he’d gradually repay within six months). That didn’t happen, and I heard he’d relocated to Puerto Rico, for whatever reason, and then some international traveling. Exasperating, but I sucked it up as one of life’s lessons.
Decades later, this guy was now back in N. America and had gotten my email addy from a mutual friend. He contacted me and said he wanted to pay the debt. Of course, inflation had somewhat ballooned the amount owed. A few emails bounced back & forth, and he wound up using his credit card by phone to purchase me a Lincoln MIG welder… something I could make good use of! Wow, that was heart-warming! (And so 'all forgiven')
thomas rubino wrote:You got me curious Joel; 1829 ! first patented spring tape! 1868 it was improved to modern standards! Way older than I would have guessed!
Real interesting to learn, Tom. So why were the wooden ones still popular for so long? I'm thinking it could be that the early steel tapes (even into the 20th century) might have been made with some type of steel that wasn't as durable as later ones, and that the thin tapes could kink and be prone to metal fatigue and breakage. What's desirable is a tape that has a certain stiffness for extension, but can recover from the inevitable flexing that happens occasionally in actual work situations. As we know, the development of various forms of steel for varied purposes has continued to the present time.
Good points you've made, Kai. Yeah, DIY initiative & experience are good, but there are always those things that can be next to impossible to do, given the actual extent of a person's knowledge & tools.
"Reduce, Re-use, Recycle." Here’s something that relates to the “Re-use” aspect. It's obvious that very many tools — and pieces of equipment useful in the home, yard, or homestead — rely on electric motors. A lot of this electric equipment gets junked needlessly. Very often you can repair the motor.
This instructive video addresses the three most common problem points with AC and DC electric motors — the capacitor, the brushes, and bearings. This is pretty cool stuff, and I learned things from this vid. As the guy mentions, some of his other videos focus on related matters and certain details
Not a complaint, just an inquiry... I'm a little unaware. And staffers, please move this post if I've posted in the wrong thread or forum.
I seem to remember that originally I was allowed to select six bumper stickers as part of my profile. At this point (a few hundred posts & quite a few "Likes" later, and with 52 apples), I get a message that I'm still limited to six bumper stickers. Possibly you've had to answer this sort of question to the point of true fatigue (sorry). But WHY? Thanks.
Stacy, In my area, cougar sitings are not really uncommon. I’ve seen four over the years, without really looking for them. It seems like every year we hear about someone seeing one fairly close by their homestead. Cougars here mainly seem to feed on deer (two species of deer are abundant here).
Stories about cougars raiding chicken coups are so rare that I can’t recall an incident right now.
Here, much more typical coop raiders are coyotes, raccoons, and even large owls. But I think it can be difficult to advise from the experience of other localities than your own. As Debi advised, I go with the idea that local lore (if you can talk about specifics with level-headed people who have been local for a decade or more) would be worth listening to. Because I believe local genetic variants of the cougar species — not to mention a locally adapted culture among cougars, passed down from mothers to offspring — can result in a particularly typical local behavior pattern.
Maybe the cougar is a realistic worry where you live, though it’s not where I live.
It would work where I live. I'm speaking about leaving some in the ground, and possibly transplanting to another section of your garden (i.e., for rotation purposes).
Possibly a little tricky and unpredictable, which I'll explain. When we harvest potatoes, it's sort of 'wholesale' or 'mass' process: with spuds, we want to get a maximum amount as food for over winter and at least through spring. Consequently, what we're primarily interested in is spuds that have sized-up (grown to be large, for their variety or type). We want to maximize the return. Some smaller tubers may get bypassed in the process, and they will get that vigorous early start that the natural in-the-ground situation can give them. I believe that, in a certain way, that's the best start a potato plant can get.
But we tend to harvest pretty thoroughly, so many of the smaller spuds are actually brought up and given a preliminary cleaning off. They could be returned to the ground, but they're already somewhat disturbed. Yet you've got them in-hand, and could replant them in a new spot. Our ground usually doesn't freeze too hard since we're not in the colder parts of Canada, and snow usually adds an insulative layer in our gardens. Spuds left in the ground usually do not rot unless they've been frozen or wounded (cut into) during the harvesting process... even then, an injured spud might start a new, vigorous & viable plant.
Another thing to consider, though: Potatoes from your own harvests can sometimes, after a few annual generations, develop disease — a sort of cumulative, snowballing process. I know a very successful organic potato grower who saved his own seed potatoes for quite a few years, but stopped doing so and began buying seed shipped to him from a thoroughly controlled organic potato seed farm. He wants his plantings to pay off. On our place, we want our own food, but avoidance of plant diseases is still important for us.
Each geographic situation has it's own conditions, so experimentation is warranted.
Here’s a vid about making a quick-action vise from scrap steel and a junked caulking gun (common, cheap variety).
The making process is pretty simple. The only tool he shows that I, personally, would have to borrow from a neighbour is the tap he uses. One little improvement I’d make is to drill two holes on the bottom of that angle-iron, on each side (four holes, in total) where the unit sits on the bench — that way I could screw it to a benchtop if I wanted to keep the vise immobile while I’m working on something clamped in it.
I’m curious about who here has found community, in a country (rural, woodsy, or coastal) setting, that is functional and supportive for them. I’m not limiting the idea behind this thread to intentional community. Looser forms of association, cooperation & belongingness are equally interesting, I think.
Many people dream of it and strive for it — for some, the dream becomes a reality.
How does it work where you are? Is it social, practical, and/or? How do you help & nurture each other? Do you have any structured forms of mutuality? Stuff like that.
What I was noticing 20 years ago when Permaculture became popular was people utilizing planting & cultivation techniques they’d read about in PC books — and maybe throwing in a chicken tractor, etc on the livestock side. That’s more of a ‘procedure hodgepodge’ than a design.
There’s a wide, wide range of appropriateness (in both design & procedure) and Bryant’s observations point out some of the key considerations…
Bryant RedHawk wrote:Location is probably the most critical factor when it comes to designing, then it would be what do you want in the order of food plants, then it becomes a matter of adjusting to 1. the location, 2. the environment being dealt with, 3. soil conditions.
So if you want to be "food Independent" you will need to be able to grow a very wide variety of plants, animals, trees, etc. There are not many locations that this can be done without some manipulations.
I’ve met quite a wide range of homesteaders, too… a real spectrum of physical, demographic & personality types. One thing you get from people, say, 50-years-old and older, is that besides the factors that Bryant mentions, there’s also age. Because older people trying to do the PC route will tend to choose strategies that also realistically suit their physical-energy level. So age actually is another factor in developing design.
One thing a man of about 70 told me was that he felt people in their 20s or early 30s might renounce machinery, which will affect at least some details in design decisions. But an older person is usually grateful that assisting & enhancing machines exist. He said that he would welcome the day when more of the needed machinery is electric, and when it’s easier and cheaper to have the electric-energy source as part of the home situation… very-high efficiency being one of the ingredients of that.
This morning I was called upon by someone I know to look at their scythe and see why it was hard for the guy to use. I watched him hold the scythe and use it a little. He's tallish and his scythe wouldn't mount well in his snath in any provided adjustment to be fixed at a proper angle.
You need the blade to move (in it's arc) fairly perpendicular to the grass or other plants you need to cut. The tang of the blade was clearly fashioned either for a shorter person, or for a different snath. So I removed the blade, clamped it into a bench vise, heated the proper portion of the tang, and twisted the angle of the blade somewhere in the range of 20 degrees. That worked out great & the guy was pleased.
I'm posting a link to a page about doing this sort of thing. The demo shows an electrical-induction method being used for heating the steel of the tang to the required heat range for twisting, but I used oxy-acetylene — simply what I had in my shop equipment. I hope this may be helpful to some of you who are finding your scythe uncomfortable and inefficient.
I agree with most of what Chris has said above. I'm glad the company exists. Since the OP seems to suggest a desire for feedback, I want to offer one comment.
Chris Kott wrote:In addition to carrying most of the best lines of hand tools available for all-around use, they carry many solid types of gardening tool usually not found anywhere but online. In addition, they also carry woodshop and woodworking tools.
Their pricing is middle-of-the-road to pricey, but I have never found them to sell anything sub-standard. It's like a high-end Princess Auto. Also, their quarterly catalogues are useful, though I think I will investigate their online options and perhaps do away with the needless paper expense.
I went in to the Vancouver store with my wife one time to get a couple things we knew we needed, and then to have a look around and see what else they had that might be useful. We were in the city for a few days at that point, and we were homesteaders who were cleaned-up, well-showered, and wearing nice clothes. I saw a dado set for a tablesaw that looked like a very good tool (it was in a display case and had a stock number which I wrote down, but no price shown). I went up to the customer desk and inquired about it, asking one of the clerks what the price was. He just looked at me and replied "More than you'd want to afford"... not even a laugh or an explanation. He might have been right, since (as Chris said, above) a good share of their tools are pricey. But he didn't offer advice about where to shop for a more cost-effective option for that item.
Maybe they fired that clerk, who knows? His style was terse, and probably not the best PR for Lee Valley. I've got to say I felt weird enough that I remember the experience.
Wj Carroll wrote:Eastern coyotes are very aggressive and smart.
This is interesting to me. I'm not a field biologist, but I've lived amongst wildlife for most of my life (deer, bears, raccoons, packrats, coyotes, and so on).
Our coyotes here are not so big, and their packs are usually not large, and they're shy coyotes. Oh, definitely, they're a hazard if you're keeping chickens, ducks, or rabbits... or a family cat. But that's about it.
Here's my personal mystery: We also have cougars here on the British Columbia mainland, and I've seen four without ever going looking for one. Although the human population of the mainland is probably about 40 times as many people (of all ages & sizes) as on Vancouver Island (off the mainland coast), the statistics for cougar attacks on humans are w a y disproportionate — whenever the news media carried a story, it was virtually always an inciident that had occurred on Vancouver Island. The human population on Vancouver Island is not generally very dense. So I've wondered if the genetics of the Vancouver Island mountain-lion population is generally different (more aggressive & fearless toward humans) than that of the population here on the Mainland.
Point being that while generalities about a specific species can be interesting, I tend to think there really are no grounds for believing all local populations (say, of coyotes) will behave in terms of the general pattern.
Nick Kitchener wrote:I was a professional electronic repair tech back in the early to mid 1990's and saw the writing on the wall back then. I ended up getting out and retraining in a new career. The component densities and complexity is so hoigh in a lot of devices, you need specialized equipment and training to fault find and repair them.
Point well taken. But I still resonate personally with what Chris wrote, above.
I use Apple products, but it’s not like they never break down or develop issues. I separate my feeling about what I've experienced as the good qualities of Apple products — like ease of use, and general dependability — from my feelings about their planned obsolescence… and about the smug nature of the big monolithic company Apple became.
I’m a DIY’er at heart.
I liked what I learned about Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak’s early idealism. But it’s well known that Jobs gradually became authoritarian and ultra-competitive. It seems like he found no way to resist the pervasive business-world patterns. They transformed him and the company he’d started. Just one example.
Both sides of my family had come from an agricultural life, but my parents had abandoned that and were involved in commerce in town/city circumstances. I got interested in an organic-food diet, which led me to personal contact with organic farmers. I rented a tiny cottage on an organic farm and began to learn little bits from the farm family. Then I wanted my own land and wanted to learn all the skills involved in living that way. One thing naturally led to the next... with a lot of trial & error, and various failures & successes.
I'll say that the projects I've shown pics of and described are not so wonderful or magnificent... they're just some sharings that hopefully encourage others to share what they've done and are doing. Although the truly great examples of what people have done can be tricky to find on the internet, I can assure you there are some great examples out there. In many cases people seem to have done them for home & family usage, not so much for sale.
People who know my history of contributions here on Permies are aware that I'm big on DIY — including on devising & fabricating devices & equipment when that's cheaper, more expedient or more completely suited to one's specific needs.
So I applaud Caleb's opening post offering info on how to make a block & tackle. I just wanted to add that, if you do want to find factory-made equipment of this type, a valuable source would be the forestry (logging) equipment supply outlets in your region.
I agree that 13 can be a difficult age for a lifestyle transition. I'll suggest something, however I know realism in these things depends on what the boy is like. Maybe this thread will have something in it worth considering? and possibly you'd like to contribute to the thread...
I suggest this sort of thing because in the summer just before my 13th birthday I built a minibike (motorscooter) from spare parts with a friend. It was an exciting, fascinating, challenging, informative experience. Context wouldn't have to be a 'motor vehicle' and many projects with tools take place outdoors. I believe when you become more capable at making things, you mature in a certain way — a way that's real. Just a thought.
Here's a piece of gear that could be quite useful around the homestead. It enables you to extract spikes in conjunction with a handheld power drill. Some fairly common homestead-shop tools are needed to make it, but it doesn't require unusual ones or highly refined skills.
Though it's not shown in the video, looks to me like (using a mallet) you might be able to drive the "claw" portion under a spike head that's sitting flush with the wood, to start the extraction. Angle iron, used to make the claw, is usually quite strong, tough steel and would likely stand up to the poinding.
This tool could be very useful for demolition and for salvaging lumber for rough-construction re-use.
Joel Bercardin wrote:I used to think the "similar threads" listed were annoying, but then went through a phase of getting a guffaw out of the absurdity. If I look at the situation practically, my vote would be to get rid of that feature.
Well, for one thing, Devaka is currently improving it, so let's not be hasty.
Yeah, it's good to not be hasty. And I always give our programmers & technicians full credit for the important work they do here. I praise them for their efforts. My feeling is that, for identifying similarities among topics described in the subtle English tongue, I suspect an algorhythm probably cannot compare with human consideration & understanding.
Joseph Lofthouse wrote:This issue occurs when there is an auto-linked-keyword somewhere in the current page's text.
For example the thread contains the words, seed, medicinal, fence, perennial, fruit trees, experience, yard, and bees.
That explains it! and explains why it is only sometimes.
I wonder if there is some tech magic that could weigh the actual subject of the thread against those 'auto-linked' words?
EDIT...I just looked at the 'similar threads' for this thread...four 'creeping charlie' ones
Thank you, Judith and Joseph. I think these two posts point out how irrelevant the current process is: it's not identifying similar threads, or rarely does so. The 'reactions' of the programming are, in effect, random and inane. What kind of music do you get if you put a rabbit on a piano keyboard? Posters include whatever words they want in a post, expressing themselves in the way they choose to in the moment. They're not at all thinking about how some programming will automatically associate words they've included in their post with some archived topic. I used to think the "similar threads" listed were annoying, but then went through a phase of getting a guffaw out of the absurdity. If I look at the situation practically, my vote would be to get rid of that feature.
A couple years ago I thought of a way to make my sprinkler stands more versatile and, at the same time, make managing the sprinklers a shade easier. I can keep a couple of sprinkler stands each pretty much in it’s own area, and minimize the trouble & plant-damage of dragging stands and hoses around.
I’ve pictured one stand, prior to adding my new type of fitting at its top. Usually we want to use one of two types of sprinkling heads. One is an "impact" type (on the right in the pic), which shoots out a strong pulsed stream of water, tending to discharge water quite a ways though providing rather little of it to the soil near the sprinkler stand. The other is locally called a "butterfly" type (on the left), which spreads an umbrella of soft rain-like water, but has a smaller radius of effect, closer to the sprinkler.
Detailed ‘how-to’ explanation would require too much text here, but I used common brass and galvanized-steel fittings, bought from a building-supply plumbing section. I put a hose snap-on coupler on the upright pipe of each standpipe, and fitted each of the sprinkler heads themselves with the appropriate components. Hence the sprinkler heads have become easily interchangeable in a matter of seconds.
(I think it's pretty likely that some company or another has mass produced an attachment system like the one I've made, but I haven't seen it for sale in the local farmers' or gardeners' supply stores. Anyhow, I do enjoy DIY.)
I hope the visuals make the set-up procedure understandable and repeatable by anyone who wants to go this route.
This whole thread is welcome & useful. It only needs more illustration. Thanks for posting, Kai.
Kai Walker wrote:
I have images but this won't let me upload them directly from computer to here. Sorry folks.
It shouldn't be impossible to upload your pics, as far as I can see. (I've done it lots, myself.) I'd suggest posting about this difficulty on the Tinkering With This Site forum. The people who look after tech things, here on Permies, are customarily very helpful. (Hooray for them!)
I had to coddle ours for the first years... some varieties didn't do well through the winter, etc. After the survivor varieties became decently rooted, they've thrived. Some of ours are now 7-ft tall and 4-ft across. And producing lots of sweet berries. Best of luck with yours!