Jeff Wesolowski

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since Apr 20, 2012
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chicken bee
nw ohio
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Recent posts by Jeff Wesolowski

Time is our biggest factor.  So I would say try to analyze how much time it will take verses costs savings.  My garden for example used a lot of grass clippings from my yard and has made weeding easy since it is so well under control.  Try to do things within reason and do the best ya can with what's available. Can you raise chickens without bought en feed? Maybe, but other options might be better like ducks or geese that are herbivores. Rabbits are a good choice but don't give us much fat, needed more than most realize.
1 month ago
I would add enough wood chips  to keep on drier side.  I would use comfrey  and make a comfrey bed with plants about 4-6 feet apart.  I would only add in spring to mid summer and store the rest till spring.  I think adding during winter months when there is no plant growth allows leaching into soil and contaminating ground water. Comfrey is a very good at absorbing nutrients and can be used as fertilizers.
1 month ago
I don't mind seeds so I core tomatoes and put three or four in hot water. When skins start to peel off I scoop out and place in metal bowl. Place more tomatoes in hot water. with rubber gloves I remove skin and place in clean jars.  Don't take long and have seven jars filled with very little mess. can off in hot water bath.  the tomatoes separate in jar and can be strained to separate with strainer.  I enjoy juice so that isn't wasted and what's left can easily reduced on stove.
1 month ago
I second the choice on guinea fowl and find a way easy way to get em in coop at night, like a special treat.  I heard millet only given at dusk is a way to coop em.  Predation is always a problem.  If chickens, you can an automatic door.  
1 month ago

Peter van den Berg wrote:Hi Jeff,
Looks nice, I'll give you that. The top of the firebox is restricted/lined with firebricks but the sides of the firebox are still steel as I see it. Lining this also with firebrick, full or split ones, would help a lot in burning temperatures and through that, cleaner burning. I fully expect insulating the riser as well would raise efficiency again, gaining more heat out of the same fuel.
All that done, you would be able to add a second barrel to extract more heat. And burn the paint off, no doubt, I sincerely do hope you have doors in front and rear of your garage to vent the muck outside.

My original 6" development model started with one 55 gallon barrel and ended with three of those, while the first one already impressed me no end.

Thanks  Peter, the sides are firebrick, the metal is just a brace holding the firebrick in place.  As far as insulating the  riser, once the riser reaches a certain temp, won't it just stay there?  I would think that insulation would just allow it to reach temp sooner, correct?
1 year ago

thomas rubino wrote:Hi Jeff ;
Neat little rocket stove you built.   I see one major problem.  Your barrel is still painted!!!  When that heats up, it is going to give off vast amounts of noxious smoke, really nasty stuff!!! I know its in a shop but still...

If that barrel is not getting  hot enough to burn off the paint then your not reaching rocket temps.

Its still a neat stove and if its doing the job of heating your area then it will do. Considering its  mid winter any working stove is better than none.

Do you have any suggestions on removing the paint?  Sander, grinder, paint remover?  Top of barrel is 550 degrees so far,  don't know how much hotter it will get with that much surface area.

1 year ago
How well is your building insulated?  
1 year ago
Just finished my batch box rocket heater.  It is not a mass heater though, just designed to heat up garage.  Used a mama bear fisher stove, easier for our skill level and has the advantage of a well made box with a nice door.  Batch box is kinda short, only 15 inches deep and 12 inches wide and 12 inches tall. Port size is 2.5 inches wide and 9 inches tall.  Riser dimensions is 6 inches by 6 inches and is square and is 50 inches tall.  Used  six inch exhaust and it worked out just fine.  No secondary intake, not sure I'm going to add one. Didn't insulate riser either.  Fire brick for riser was standard, non insulated.  
1 year ago
I'm in my fifth or six year of beekeeping and have never treated.  A beehive in it's natural state has a debris floor to the best of my knowledge.  I don't think it's natural not to have one cause one of the ways bees control mites is to groom them off and where would they fall? A debris pile of course.  And what type of floors do most standard hives have? Solid bottom board, does this make sense? Doesn't to me and that's why I use freeman trays, I.E., screen bottom boards with oil tray.  This method and natural selection has worked for me, now I just need to raise queens from my best hives.
2 years ago
If you harvest early remember you need to shock it. I don't how you dry your wheat but if it molds it causes all kinds health problems consumed.  I harvested amaranth last year and dried it in my attic but ended up with less than a gallon when I was done.