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Matt's Permaculture Experience (BRK)

 
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Location: The Wilds
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Matthew Stone wrote:
This morning and evening I was working on the electrical box. Much of my time today was spent staring at a shelf, trying to figure out if we had the right nuts or bolts for the additional mountings I was putting in the box haha. But I'm getting ahead of myself. I started out today by adjusting some of the screw holes I made and look! The box fits great now, all four screws in the motor mount and now light peeking through the gasket (6). After that I worked on drilling some extra holes for some switches and wires that have to leave the box (7). And finally, I made a new bracket out of aluminum plate and bent it so that it holds the capacitors inside the box in place (.



The capacitor bracket came out well! Great job, Matt!
 
Posts: 30
Location: Montana
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Post #5:

Today's post is going to be pretty short. Most of today was spent in Missoula doing some shopping for snacks and clothes. Josiah has turned me to the suspender side. Thanks, dude, these things are fucking great! (pictures coming Sunday).

Most of the rest of my day was spent relaxing, though I did bake some bread, which seemed to be a hit. Expect to see more pictures of food coming in the future, though I currently have none for today. Too busy cooking to stop for pictures haha.

Anyway, I'll leave you all with the video I promised Allllll the way back on Monday. Here's the timelapse of the Bootcamp harvesting Junk Poles.
Enjoy!
 
Matthew Stone
Posts: 30
Location: Montana
46
dog urban books
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Post #6:

Welp, it's Sunday again so it's time for another link to a giant album full of pictures! https://photos.app.goo.gl/MzsH53tE2vV7fL8L8

I'm not sure it makes sense to do a recap of all the other projects I've done this week, so I'm just gonna ramble about whatever I feel like! Hah! And I'll also post about the stuff I worked on today (hint, it's a BB)

This week feels like it's gone by in a blur, I look back at my previous posts and I'm just like "Huh, I guess all those things did happen this week..."

I've cooked (with help) several meals this week and baked bread for the first time in months, spent half a day loading 51 heavy sheets of glass and unloading those same sheets onto a structure I was involved in both designing and building, I've used a hatchet more in the last couple days than I probably have for the entirety of the rest of my life and I'm loving it, and to top it all off, I've been putting the circuitry stuff I learned in college (kinda) to some practical use. Like, I never thought I'd actually need to be able to read wiring diagrams but here I am. Honestly, it's a little surreal. I feel like my knowledge of practical skills and academic topics are coming together here in useful ways I never expected and at the same time, I'm adding all new things I'm learning. I'm sure this isn't a unique feeling, I just find myself fascinated by it. I can't help but think that this is the way schools should be. Or at least something similar to this.

In other news, I'm getting really excited for the planting season! I've been working through several gardening and permaculture books since the summer of last year (and several more waiting in the wings) and I'm super excited to finally have a chance to try growing stuff and experimenting. This morning nine was talking about doing some stuff with Landrace garlic which I also very interested in. So, I guess I need to add another 130 pages of articles written by Joseph Lofthouse to my list and relistening to his podcasts with Paul to my list of things to do.

I also want to try making some food from recipes sitting in my youtube cooking/food preparation playlist. In particular, I saw a video by the channel "Pro Home Cooks" on homemade vinegar and I am absolutely looking at trying to make some of those. Maybe I'll try and start some next week, raisin vinegar seems like it would have a fascinating flavor. We also have some water kefir that I'm excited to experiment with (thanks Nine!).  

Anyway, on to the stuff I worked on today. Recently we got some new hatchets for the shop (five, to be specific) so I decided to spend some time sharpening them. So at about 1PM today I went down to the shop and pulled out all the hatchets (some old and some new) that needed to be sharpened. I picked one of the new ones and got to work. You can see what I was starting with in the first 3 pictures. You can see that the powder coating on the ax was quite thick, so I had to spend quite a bit of time (and sandpaper) removing it. The coating on this ax really liked to stick to the sandpaper, so that made sharpening the ax take significantly longer.

Once I got through the powder coating, I had to spend a considerable amount of time actually putting an edge on the ax. I used 80 grit sandpaper for about 80% of the time I was sharpening. The finish that resulted from just the 80grit actually surprised me quite a bit. I only ended up doing a 180grit finish on this particular hatchet since these tools are going to be used by people who are still learning how to properly take care of them (people like me!), so putting the time into polishing the edge isn't really worth it. Here's a short video of me sharpening the ax.


In any case, the last three pictures are the edge I ended up with, I am confident I can do better, but considering this took me 4 hours of work, I might settle for a less nice edge in favor of a more functional edge on future ax sharpening since time is a bit of a commodity here.

Anyway, that's all from me today, I'll leave you all with this gif on an egg sliding on a cast iron skillet that is tragically too short for getting a BB (I forgot to take pictures of the cleanup so it's not really a big deal). I'm gonna try adding it a couple of ways because I couldn't find out how uploading gifs work on Permies, so I'm just gonna try a couple of things, sorry if there are like, 3 egg sliding gifs haha.

Using Img:
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Matthew Stone
Posts: 30
Location: Montana
46
dog urban books
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Post #7:

Back again with another post!

Today was more work on the Sawmill with Fred. We finished the last touches on wiring and the final modifications to the box and then got the box fitted up onto the motor. The original gasket for the thermal overload switch got lost and I had to improvise a new one using some rubber off an ax we were going to throw away (1). In total, these modifications took up pretty much all the morning. There were lots of little fiddly bits and hunting for nuts and bolts that would fit our needs. Pictures 2 and 3 show the finished box.

After lunch, we worked on getting the belt lined up on the driveshaft and once that was done, we bolted everything in. That took another hour of very cold fingers to sort out haha, but we got it done!

At last, the time had come to test the mill (4)! We moved the motor out onto the sawmill and plugged it in and what do you know, it turned on! I cannot describe the amount of relief I had when the wiring I did didn't immediately burst into flames haha. We then tried to get the sawmill calibrated, but quickly found out that the ground underneath the sawmill was still frozen and the shrink-swell cycle from that freezing made the ground unlevel. So, Fred and me split up, I worked on cleaning up the area around the sawmill while Fred checked on other projects that needed his attention.

Overall it was a good day! I'll leave you all with the black bean soup I made for the Bootcamp for dinner(5).

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Matthew Stone
Posts: 30
Location: Montana
46
dog urban books
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Post #8 (3/23/21):

I'm going to start adding dates to the post number since that makes sense.

The ground around the sawmill is still too frozen to spend time calibrating it, so instead, I joined Dan in working on finishing the interior siding of the love shack. I forgot to take pictures of the full before, but pictures 1 and 2 are the work we got done by about 10:00AM this morning. Picture three shows the setup we were using to cut our longer boards. I forgot how fun nail guns are to use, they have such a satisfying feeling to them.

It took a long time, but we were able to finish getting all the interior siding, including the trim done in the love shack! Its not perfect, but I'm happy with the way that it came out.

This evening was Taco Tuesday! For the first time since I've been here (and possibly ever, from what I hear? Don't quote me on that) we had Taco Tuesday down in the class area. Our spread of food can be seen in pictures 6 and 7, it was delicious. I may have eaten a bit too much food haha. My contribution to the spread was a vegan queso. I got the recipe from the Forks Over Knives recipe app and added some lime and chipotle powder. The consistency was very good, though I think I can make a lot of improvements to the flavor.

Anyway, that's all for now, I'll leave you all with a gorgeous view from the lumber run last week.
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