Brian Brown

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since Feb 18, 2015
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Recent posts by Brian Brown

Depending on the length of time it takes me to get the EX back up her tracks will be directly correlated to your likelihood of being tossed into the volcano. LOL
3 years ago
I will be bringing some proenneke package tools back with me on Monday when I return along with some hand made ones. Might take an hour or two in the evenings to have a small class on their uses. I have some really nice bass wood that would make several cups and bowl that I will also bring. I will have some down time after dark that might be put to use teaching a few primitive skills that I imagine will come in handy.
3 years ago
Mokotaugen or Crooked knife would be very high on my list. Eight tools might be enough and for me, this is what I would choose.

Axe
Draw knife
Crooked knife
Larger 1" chisel
Bow or cross cut saw
Hammer (small sledge)
hand drill (with 1" and 1/2" bits"
Tape measure
3 years ago
I will be starting on an underground house using these methods this spring and summer. I hope to have it finished in two seasons as there will only be two of us working on it. Most likely start a thread here with progress if anyone is interested.
3 years ago
I would add that my grandfather had a method for creating a treated post while in the ground that might work for your application. They cut fence post fresh from the woods and set them in green. Strung their fence and left the pole to dry for a week or two. Then he would go along and set a coffee can about the same size as the pole on top and drive a nail or two into the can to keep it there. Then punch a couple of extra holes in the bottom of the can and fill it full of waste motor oil. The theory was that the used oil would seep into the wood over a period of time and preserve it. After a while the can was removed and discarded or used again on another post. A farm is never in a shortage for coffee cans or used motor oil. That being said, he had used this method for about 50 years and there were several hundred posts on our farm treated his way that were set by my great grandfather when my grandfather was a young man. Your mileage may vary but I assure you, it works.
3 years ago
Having raised Japanese quail for years, there is really no solution to quail droppings other than to shovel them out and pile them to mature. I house mine in 2x6' pens approximately three feet off the ground. Rake under it ever two or three days and move to a pit that was dug behind the pen to contain the waste. Quail droppings are very acidic, so watch what you put them on in your garden until they are mature or you can shovel them into a bucket and mix with water into a slurry and use it that way much faster. As far as laying and feeding. Game bird feed is great but mine do well on layena. There is a trick to feeding them that I will share. If you use a trough style feeder with holes cut out, place a piece of hardware cloth inside it on top of the feed. This will save you lots of money in the long run as quail will strow the food everywhere and eat very little.

Recently I have had great success with them on the ground. Round pen with hardware cloth at the bottom and a cover to protect from predators. The trick is to place buckets with lids on them around. Cut a hole into the side with about a 3" lip to keep any water out. Fill the bottom of the bucket with sand. Not only will the quail hide and sleep in there but they will also lay in there making egg collection easy. In the past I rigged up a simple LED light in the side of each bucket driven by a small solar panel and battery. This kept them laying all season. you can line up the buckets like a little colony together.
3 years ago
I'd like to add just a little to this for folks having issues with Raptors. I have been a Falconer for over twenty years. Here are some things I have learned over the years to guard against raptors and your livestock. LGD's can and will help to an extent with most raptors that are just passing overhead and not predating your population on a daily basis. For most the juice isn't worth the squeeze so they keep travelling looking for an easier meal. Chickens are a tough row to hoe for most all raptor species with the exception of just a few. Far more are lost to mammal predators and the blame goes to owls or raptors. These will be all but negated with a good LGD that is allowed to do his job. I have a ton of experience with Pyrs and think it is hard to find a better LGD but they must be allowed outside at night to work. That is when they really shine. They are lazy during the day but at night they wander and patrol almost constantly.

On the raptor front, the one thing that can make or break your flock is pre-warning. Nothing does this job better than Guinea fowl. Their eyesight is so acute that they will spot an inbound raptor miles out and give an alarm. The chickens will come to respect this alarm and go to cover. The LGD will also learn to respect it and get out to have a look. The two working together will disarm a raptor who hunts by stealth as well. Just something to keep in mind.
3 years ago
I am planning a PSP structure for the spring/summer with an attached underground green house. On my property in Montana I have lots of options on locations with southern exposure and I was wondering if there was an optimal grade to build into? I have everything from completely flat to nearly twenty percent available. I will be removing trees wherever I build and using a d-4 dozer for the dirt work if that is a concern. Is there an optimal grade?
3 years ago
I am new around here but not new to construction and the techniques. We are off grid now in the little belt mountains of Montana near Raynesford. The spring will find us clearing land and cutting timber from our property to start on a permanent home. I am seriously considering a wofati-esque structure as an earth berming in this area of hills and valleys is an obvious choice. I have some reservations and would like some input from someone with experience if that would be possible. I know there are a several in Missoula but I wonder if anyone is closer to me that might have interest in coming out to give their input on what I have planned and possibly help with location on my property. This will be a project for a couple seasons as we are just two. If anyone in the area would like to come out for a visit, please contact me here or at vombrown@gmail.com I would like to have some help with a few steps in the process and could surely trade labor. I am a carpenter,welder and electrician by trade.

Thanks in advance

Brian
3 years ago