Win a bunch of tools from Truly Garden and Loma Creek! this week in the Gear forum!

Carrie Graham

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since Aug 12, 2014
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Recent posts by Carrie Graham

Is there another "thread"  (ha how punny) that shows what you wove those on?
1 year ago
My favorite for napkins are the natural uncolored shop rags they sell at Sams and Price club for about.16 for a pack of 50.   With that many we use them for everything and get a clean one for almost every use.   I also have a stack of the white terry shop towels in the drawer as well.  For grease, I have a stack of newspapers in another cabinet near where I use small kitchen appliances that potentially spill grease, like waffle irons, contact grill.etc.   I keep a "placemat" of newspaper under each appliance when I use it to soak up stray grease.   The newspaper gets used as fire starter.  My husband is in love with the exorbitantly priced Scott disposable towels. I toss any I find in with my weekly "cloth" wash and they last a while, though I will use them also for any unwashable mess.   I also get flannel from thrift store sheets and cut it into handkerchiefs which are folded and stored in tissue boxes, distributed around the house in convenient locations.   All used cloths get put in a basket under the sink and washed with hot water (only use for that in the last 20 years) once a week or so.
1 year ago
The draft is really good in the current heater.  If you look carefully you will see there are circular plates on the Mealmaster, kind of in the middle.  I am thinking we could possibly run the flue gasses from the RMH into the one in the back, and keep the stove intact.  Not the best looking solution, but easily undone without sacrificing the stove if it doesn't work.  Also maybe insulate some of the surface area if needed.  I think I will just have to experiment to see what will work. It is still in the 80's here, so not yet. But we need a plan for when the time is upon us.  The batch box with a cast iron plate is a simple and elegant solution, similar to what I did with the current cast iron pot.  I love the sketch-ups. I wish I was as adept at using the program to put my pieces together and visualize the possibilities.  
2 years ago
Current design: Works OK but deteriorating and needs to be moved closer to the wall. Easy to load with full-size wood, stovepipe temps 2-300  degrees, no smoke. Cooking features are OK, but not optimal.  Thermal mass inadequate to hold heat.  House is large but well insulated, full-size wood is a requirement.

Tried to insert picture here...not sure it will work.


Replacement ideas:

Pebble Style RMH- love the fact that you can experiment and change it easily. Also, think it might have possibilities to add a "spa" component.  Maybe have different sections filled with different materials, salt, clay pellets, stones, etc. Or trays to switch out as desired.  A constantly available hot rock foot massage sounds like a possibility.

Walker stove- Love the design but cost for materials in my area (insulated bricks) would be prohibitive.

Window preferred to see the fire.

Water heating would be an awesome added bonus as the house has a Pex radiant floor throughout.  We no longer use it much as I found even with 6 zones, it didn't balance exactly as I wished with fewer rooms currently in use.

Easily available materials:

1. Mealmaster cookstove...interested in adding it into the system, cause it is cool and available.


    2.Clay, wool- got them both on this farm.

1. Bricks and other typical recycled construction materials.
2. We have a couple of older wood stoves that maybe could have parts recycled from...doors?


We have a 10' x 10' corner to work with, the chimney pipe is about a foot off the corner.  We considered coming up with some sort of damper, shunting the heat either to the stove or a rock bed with the RMH in the middle.  Or go through the stove first and then to the rock bed. Don't really need to bleed off heat from a barrel if we went through the stove. So maybe replace the barrel with an insulated mass?

Questions...what temps are we looking at where?  How hot is optimal (safe) coming into the stove?   Would there be enough left to heat a box of rocks or should it come after some mass bleed-off, so as not to damage the stove?

Our current firewood supply contains an endless  supply of bark flats, (not sure the real name, but the bark and about an inch of wood.)

2 years ago

William Bronson wrote: I'm building out of Perlite and Rapid Set Cement All.
I wet the Perlite,let it drain,then I mix the two ingredients at 1 part Rapid Set to 6 parts Perlite.
I stack square wooden forms around a round metal duct,mixing and packing as I go.
I have not fired these cores yet, but they do set up hard.
The Rapid Set Cement All is available at Home Depot at about $20.00 american for 50lbs.
I chose it because it is a Calcium Sulfoaluminate cement , with at least one msds document listing the decomposition  tempature at 2460°,which is a little low for use in a rocket core,but time will tell,and you can't beat the price.


I am interested in how this recipe has worked for you. Do you have any pics or comments on longevity?

2 years ago
Travis...details please.  What sort of fence works best?  How many per acre?  Do you make hay, buy it or have so much pasture they can "self harvest" the hay in winter. (Unicorn tales of farming I have heard.)  How often do rotate them if you only have to check on them once a month?  Like most animals, sheep stay in better if they don't see better food on the other side of the fence, any details on how to avoid that and yet have them graze it  down enough to get the undesireable along with the favorite pasture plants, so the weeds don't take over?  I would suppose mowing behind them?
We have had problems with the sheep learning to ignore electric netting since even with hair sheep their wool insulates them from the shock . No one else ever has this issue?  Also it was very hard to "stomp  down" weeds  enough to  not short out the fence.
Skill sharing is a term used in primitive skill events, meaning sharing the skills you have with others.  Also teaching is sometimes the best way to learn.  Years ago I signed up to teach a solar cooking class for 4-H, which forced me to actually get in there and start doing it.   Always good not to reinvent the wheel if you can find a wheel maker near by to show you how it is done.  Also more fun with a like minded group.  Stereo-types of med students are overworked and underslept, commendable if you have time for anything else.
2 years ago
I am 30 minutes west of Fredericksburg on the Culpeper/Madison border.  I am hoping to get my solar system up this month or next if I can schedule some workers.  If you are interested in seeing the start to finish, you are welcome to visit.
2 years ago
I am looking for a Virginia skill sharing group. Is Madison VA too far for you?
2 years ago