Douglas DeMers

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since Jun 07, 2009
Tokeland, WA; Riverside WA
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Recent posts by Douglas DeMers

Opportunity wrote:
Anyone have any advice on how to locate suitable partners for a homesteading project?  My two basic requirements are: Vegetarians, and Non-smokers.  After years of frustration in trying to run this gig alone, I'm starting to panic because of things like the rapidly-deteriorating economy and potential for social collapse.
[...]



Opportunity-

I'm surprised nobody mentioned checking out the Intentional Community website - www.ic.org. They are the place I go to when I'm looking for intentional community. You can troll through their online Directory of communities, look at their "Community Classifieds" and their "REACHbook" -  "a public forum for people looking for community, communities forming, and communities looking for people, as well as a place to post about resources directly relevant to intentional community. Posting is free."

I often find amusement with some of the REACHbook postings, as well as the descriptions of the "forming communities."

The community directory allows searching by name, region, etc., so you could at least get a feel for what already exists and ones that are in the forming stage, like you are. If you've already got land and an idea, why not list your community on ic.org? A fair number of people intentionally oriented do look at that resource.

Good luck!

10 years ago

jeremiah bailey wrote:
Another, probably more practical way of moving the containers would be a semi tractor. These are far more ubiquitous than cranes. The containers have the built-in ability to have trailer wheels and landing gear mounted on their underside. Also more ubiquitous than cranes are fork lifts which can be used to mount and dismount landing gear and wheels. Forklifts can also be used to push trailer and container sections into place. One could also recycle old trailers for similar reuse. Although designated trailers are generally not as sturdy as shipping containers, they are designed to take quite a beating. They are just not designed to be stacked in addition to the requisite loading, that's the major difference. Many trailers have a wood plank or plywood floor with plastic or fiberglass laminated plywood sides in a metal frame, generally aluminum and steel.



They use special trailers with a semi tractor to move these shipping containers. LandAll is one such brand of trailer. When we bought a used 40' reefer SeaLand unit for our place in the Okanogan, we called around and found that Randy's Towing (a local tow company) had the ability to move the container for us. It was quite a process - given the tight turns on our access road - I wish I'd taken video!

The LandAll has movable wheels, which can be re-positioned as needed. A semi tractor was used to pull the trailer w/container. They had to move the trailer wheels forward to traverse a hair-pin turn, which in turn shifted the center of gravity of the load such that the tongue of the trailer (and subsequently, the driver wheels of the tractor) were significantly unweighted so he couldn't get any traction on the gravel road. They had to bring another 4x4 wrecker to help pull the tractor around the corner, after which he could move the trailer wheels back and put the weight back on the tongue/drivers and make it the rest of the way up to our place.

Our 40' container weighs around 11,000 pounds empty, so these need some significant horsepower to move. The LandAll is a tilting trailer with a solid bed and a hefty winch; there was no real "lifting" done, just a lot of pulling and sliding on the tilt bed.

I expect you'd get into a significant amount of cost if a crane is involved. I was surprised at how cheap (relatively) it was for Randy's to do the job for us. They picked up the container about a mile from our place, and delivered it to us for around $250. With the additional equipment and guys needed, and about four hours of work all told, I expected it would cost a lot more.

10 years ago

travisr wrote:
Most if not all "underground homes/building" are only 10 or so feet deep under ground. Does anyone know of techniques and ideas for deeper building/living? I know some mining companies dig caves for vineyards.   I would assume that type of construction would be extremely costly.  Pumping out and throwing a glazed roof on an old rock quarry would be pretty cool. Growing full size trees indoors and and such.   



Monolithic Domes (TM) (thin-shell concrete) have often been used for underground residences and buildings. They need to be engineered for the extra weight of the earth on top. If you poke around the http://www.monolithic.com website, you'll find a couple examples of Monolithic domes built completely underground.

Check out
http://www.monolithic.com/stories/the-invisible-dome-home

I'm not exactly sure why you'd want to build deeper - once you get below frostline, the ground temperature stays pretty constant; going deeper wouldn't accomplish much for energy efficiency, other than to add significantly to the cost.

Cheers!
Douglas
10 years ago
Hey, I've really appreciated the discussion here! Thank you Paul, Jan, Jocelyn and Diana for your insightful comments! This discussion certainly gives me good ideas of how I can better respond when this comes up again.

And, you know it will come up again That's the good news...
10 years ago
I am interested and appreciate what I'm hearing here regarding the use of the word "judgmental."!

Besides "judgmental", here is another phrase I've grown to dislike, and would like suggestions as to how to respond:

"Welcome to life in community," said in response to my bringing up an issue or concern I have with a member, or members in the community.  Sometimes I can detect sarcasm; sometimes perhaps resignation? I can clearly identify when the "welcome" is truly felt, and not intended as a speed bump (or brick wall?) in the conversation...

I would appreciate suggestions on how to respond and keep the dialog open and going.

Thanks for the opportunity to bring this up and to think about this!
10 years ago