Mike Cantrell

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since May 17, 2013
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Recent posts by Mike Cantrell

So you can build a heater anywhere on a range from negligibly massive (like a cast iron woodstove) to extremely massive (like Rob Roy's enormous central column masonry heater, 22 tons IIRC).

A negligibly massive stove will heat up very quickly, shed its heat very promptly, and be cool again very quickly.
An extremely massive stove will heat up very slowly, shed its heat very slowly, and not be cool again for quite a while.

The problem I expect your wife is picturing is this. In places with cold winters, there are the "shoulder seasons". That's the transition time between the peak and the trough of your heating demands. And in the should seasons, it's often warm during the day but cool enough at night to want a fire. It's also often cool for a couple of days, then a warm front moves through, and then it's warm for a few days, and then switch back again.

If you have a rather massive stove, you might burn a fire and not feel much heat for four hours. With practice, you can maybe judge this correctly, and light a fire at 4pm so the room doesn't cool off at 8pm. Only if you're home from work, though. And you remember. And if you're coming back from a trip, say, you've got a chilly several hours ahead of you.
And also in a stove that massive, it might NOT cool off as much overnight as you want, so that midmorning is uncomfortably hot the next day.

That's the trade-off involved in mass. It stays warm a long time when you want it to (in the dead of winter).... but it also stays warm a long time when you don't want it to (in the shoulder seasons).
7 months ago
The only times I've harvested more than a few berries for fresh eating were the times when I harvested many GALLONS of berries.

I think it varies tree-to-tree: some of them have responded well to spreading a sheet out below and shaking the fruit off the branches, and others just haven't.

I once filled a five-gallon pail with mulberries in under 20 minutes, including walking from the house to the tree and back! Just spread the sheet, shake the fruit down, and funnel it into the pail. It was great. Other trees sometimes just don't respond the same way.

I've made wine from them. It took a full two years to turn good, but when it finally did it was quite good. If you have an easy shakeable tree AND you've got plenty of patience and storage space, then I heartily recommend it. Otherwise, no.
8 months ago
I believe it's because of the new posts steadily coming in.

In the time it takes me to read what's on page 1, often several new posts are posted.

If, say, there are six of them, then that bumps the entire list down by six. And when I go to page 2, then the first six are repeats. (The first six on p2 were the last six on p1 a little while ago.)
Nice! I've done a couple with an angle grinder, and I'll back you up- it's a real challenge to avoid burning things. Wrong tool for the job.

These grinding points look like just the ticket. They probably are designed to go in a pneumatic die grinder, right?
9 months ago
Nice! I've done a couple with an angle grinder, and I'll back you up- it's a real challenge to avoid burning things. Wrong tool for the job.

These grinding points look like just the ticket. They probably are designed to go in a pneumatic die grinder, right?
9 months ago
Maybe https://letsfreckle.com/ would do it? I can't tell if there's an app version, or if it only runs in a browser. I haven't used it, I just follow the newsletter of the gal who wrote it, Amy Hoy.
9 months ago
I get the impression there might be a useful number of rigorous studies on:

Turf roofs/green roofs/living roofs ( there are some enormous commercial installations out there).

The effect of earth walls on indoor humidity. (Clay plaster, CEB, adobe, loam, cob, rammed earth, pisé de terre.)
11 months ago
Storm windows are usually tempered too. When the little bits break off the corners, they're useless, so they end up at the recycling places when people throw them out.

They're not worth selling, but a want ad on Craigslist or similar might shake some loose out of the garages and barns where people have stacked them until they get around to throwing them away.
11 months ago

Devin Lavign wrote:It should be mentioned about Bark River Knife and Tool, that they do a lot of grinding after the heat treatment process. This has caused many owners to complain of blades that chip, due to over heating of the blade and ruining of the heat treatment.

Overheating a blade causes it to get softer and more malleable rather than harder and more brittle. Are you sure people weren't accusing BRKT of just heat-treating the knives poorly so that they were shipped out too hard?
11 months ago

John Wolfram wrote:To get above 100% efficiency, they increased the temperature of the LED to 135C (275F) with the tiniest amount current running through the LED. I would imagine one could easily produce a similar result by sticking an incandescent bulb in the oven. Once the oven gets hot enough, the filament will glow, and if you were to ramp down the current with a dimmer switch, you eventually would be getting more light out of the bulb power provided by the electrical current.


It's the same as heat pumps and geothermal heating systems having greater than 100% efficiency.

You put some energy in, and more energy than that comes out. How? Some energy is gathered from elsewhere.

In the case of heat pumps and geothermal heating, the electricity does the work of moving the energy from the outside air or the underground into the house.

In the case of the LED, some of the light energy came from the electrical energy that went in, and some of the light energy came from heat energy that the LED absorbed.

In both cases, the device isn't creating energy, it's gathering energy.
11 months ago