Dave Mathia

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since Dec 28, 2013
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Recent posts by Dave Mathia

EDIT:  This was originally posted in Farmshow magazine, but I thought everyone would like it.  I was impressed how much the chickens liked the boxes, once it was all done and the second level steps were put in.  Unfortunately, the barn caught fire a couple years later and it’s all gone.  (And in case anyone is wondering, I DID NOT steal the boxes.  Everything is being phased out).  
2 months ago
Plastic Newspaper Boxes Make Great Chicken Nests

When Dave M found 8 plastic newspaper sales boxes behind his town’s local newspaper office, he thought right away that they might work as chicken nest boxes. So he converted them, then gave them to a friend.
   “All I did was remove a hinged plexiglass window on the front of the box and then placed some straw inside,” says M
   “My friend has about 150 layers and says they love using these newspaper box nests. They will often lay multiple eggs in one nest. They also seem to like the elevated vantage point. The plastic boxes are easy to clean, and the straw can be easily replaced.”
   The bottom half of each box has a solid front. “I cut out the front panels and use the space inside for more nests, which doubled each box’s capacity,” says M
   “Newspaper and shopper boxes are being phased out because everything is going to the Internet. Converting them to chicken nests is a good way to reuse them,” says M

2 months ago
I do not keep Bees.  Do not have Chickens.  Found this news article a few years back, thought it might interest some people.
1 year ago
MELT IT.  I found it turns into a very nice clear coating material.  Just get some XYLENE, put it in a glass jar and push the stryrofoam in.  It will melt quickly.  When it takes a few minutes to melt, then it is saturated.  It can be used as a coating for porous materials.  Use to waterproof electronics.    There is a video on YOUTUBE with a crazy russian spray painting his car with this as a clear coat.  Nice and hard too.  DO NOT USE ACETONE.  Doesn’t melt properly.  
3 years ago
Yes truck rads, was going to suggest.  Put the barrels outside in an insulated shed.  Run pipes and low flow 12 or 24 v pump.  Rocket stove will fill tanks with hot water rising.
This is the guy i was telling you about.  Only 200 gallons.  Earlier he said it would las a week or two to heat his house.  This is my plan but with an outdoor shed and 1-2000 gallons of water.  I will eventually have 40 or 50 evactuated tubes as well.  They can catch an amazing amount of heat.  Anyhow.  Over and out.  Thanks for the chat
3 years ago
I am planning to make a zero pressure boiler like the rocket stove pizza oven.  Saw another one like it using evacuated glass tubes, which I already bought, and the two together should heat a house for 2 weeks to a month at a time, with 1000 gallons or so.  You could easily make a litte rocket stove for the barrels.  The down side to rocket stoves is the time and management of the fire, so the heat needs to be stored better than cob.  
3 years ago
You are on the right track.  I would say, dump the barrels and get totes.  You need volume.  I did some calculations for a system that I wanted to build, and also based on stuff I read in the 70’s and 80’s (yes Im OLD!!) where guys made entire walls of their house with barrels as passive ambient heat storage.  HOWEVER, that is just not a lot of heat.  1000 gallons (4 totes) is the same heat carrying capacity as 40,000 lbs of sand.  Stack the totes and put them in an insulated box.  Then you have some heat — equivalent to 6-8 gravel truck loads of sand.  As well, in a box, you don’t have to hook up every tote, as the heat will transfer from one to another and equalize all of them.  In cold temps you can lose 25-50000 btu’s per hour.  
Those are my thoughts anyhow.  Keep at it.  
3 years ago