Michael Holtman

pioneer
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since Aug 09, 2019
Michael likes ...
books food preservation forest garden gear medical herbs cooking purity trees ungarbage foraging woodworking
I'm on a journey toward greater self-reliance for me, my family, and community.
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Recent posts by Michael Holtman

I guess the brevity of this podcast makes since considering the content covered, but I really enjoy the very in-depth three-parters. I would prefer the content to dictate the time rather than the time dictate the content. I may be the only one who holds this opinion.

Mike Jay wrote:
That way, if the work is being done on a disturbed site (Allerton Abbey for instance) it's easier for the certifier to tell that the job is done.



This is great whether the scoops are coming from the same hole, or if the back ground is clearly different. That said, Some of the pictures do a very good job of showing three piles of dirt (or better) in the after pictures.
3 weeks ago
If the bar wears out quicker, then I'd say there is something to say here about safety. It would be important to know what to look for in a well used bar. As a side note, I am aware of a couple of people who have chosen to use a pole chain saw for safety reasons. The only problem I have with that Is that they rarely have more than a 10" bar. I could just use hand tools in that case. Suppose one were to put an 18" bar on a pole saw and ran it on homemade fuel and oil. That would be better for imidiate safety, environmental heath, and overall sustainability. Granted, it may be a little unwieldy, but very capable.
3 weeks ago
Some how this was brought up in a conversation about sewing machine oil.

Phil Stevens wrote:Sebastian, do you know if your chainsaw oil (we call it two-stroke oil in many places) is a petroleum product or castor oil? Castor oil was the additive of choice when I was growing up and I still have nostalgia for that smell.



Michael Holtman wrote:
Are you saying that I can run a two stroke engine on homemade ethanol mixed with home pressed castor oil??? I use non-ethanol gasoline(petrol) now, but i could be converted if I figured out how to make my own fuel!



Travis Johnson wrote:Yes you can. Any oil is better than no oil. You just have to use more of it so that it does not score your pistons while operating.

A lot of people think you need 2 stroke oil to make 2 stroke gas for chainsaws and such. Nope. I have dumped in 10W-40 for years and my Stihl Chainsaw lived 22 years. When it died it was because I ran it over with my bulldozer.
And goodness, do not even get me started on bar and chain oil. I have not bought that in years. It costs $10 a gallon!! A Bar for my chainsaw costs $30. Since my bar wears out no matter what I use, then I am not going to get some magical life out of my bar using bar and chain oil, so I use the cheapest oil I can buy, typically hydraulic oil, but I have also used spent motor oil, old fry oil, etc. Since I get 150 cords of wood cut per $30 bar, I am WAY ahead money wise instead of spending money on bar and chain oil.

A guy told me professional loggers do that, "they buy bar and chain oil", but as I told him, then they are not very good with math, and probably have not done the math.

3 weeks ago

Phil Stevens wrote:Sebastian, do you know if your chainsaw oil (we call it two-stroke oil in many places) is a petroleum product or castor oil? Castor oil was the additive of choice when I was growing up and I still have nostalgia for that smell.



Are you saying that I can run a two stroke engine on homemade ethanol mixed with home pressed castor oil??? I use non-ethanol gasoline(petrol) now, but i could be converted if I figured out how to make my own fuel!
3 weeks ago
I haven't found anything on the internet saying lanolin was ever used. Did you read this in a book? Is this oral tradition? I'm really intrigued now!
4 weeks ago

Travis Johnson wrote:Lanoline was traditionally used



Ok. I was thinking We'd have to find something with similar characteristics to machine oil. If lanolin will work, then we can just make that switch right now. I suppose there is the possible issue that some earlier machines were maybe designed to use lanolin, in which case the lubricants would possibly damage the other machines. I could see where tolerances might require one or the other if they are loser or tighter. I'd hate to destroy an antique. Maybe a good experiment would be to buy a modern plastic machine second-hand and try to maintain it with lanolin. Would the lanolin have to be warmed in an oil can to be applied? I could probably manage getting into a cast-iron body with some sort of applicator-stick-tool-thingy, but I always dread taking apart flimsy plastic appliances.
4 weeks ago
This is a badge bit (BB) that is part of the PEP curriculum.  Completing this BB is part of getting the straw badge in tool care.

A splitting maul is a wonderful tool for splitting fire wood, posts, rails, etc. Most log splitters will only split very short logs, are very slow, burn a lot of petroleum, make a lot of racket, pollute your lungs, and break the bank. A splitting maul is versatile, as fast as you want it to be, great exercise, allows you the excuse to get some fresh air, and can be had used for a dollar or three without a handle.

This article explains what a maul is and is not. Note the photo showing a good edge angle for a maul.
maul vs. axe


This short article explains the why and how of sharpening
Sharpening a splitting maul


Requirements to complete:
- sharpen a splitting maul with a file or similar method.
- use an appropriate edge angle for the tool.


To get certified for this BB, post the following:
- pic of the dull edge
- action pic which includes all sharpening equipment used
- pic of the sharpened edge
4 weeks ago
I didn't realize that ballistol was that different from rem-oil. Wow, It's very different!
4 weeks ago
This is a badge bit (BB) that is part of the PEP curriculum.  Completing this BB is part of getting the straw badge in tool care.

Pruning shears are frequently used in chop and drop. Unlike a machete, pruning shears allow one to precisely cut very small branches and stems of nitrogen fixing support species and "weeds" growing into food producing species. They are also much safer to use when working in groups. How you sharpen your pruners will depend on weather you have an anvil or by-pass style.

Here's a short video showing how it's done. Don't grind the flat down. The flat only ever comes in contact with the stone to polish the surface or remove the bur.


These are hedge shears, and not pruning shears. The technique is the same for by-pass pruning sheers and loppers.



Requirements to complete:
- Disassemble pruners and sharpen the edge properly (depending on whether anvil or by-pass), including both primary and secondary edge if applicable.
- Remove excess sap and other residue. Some "staining" is to be expected.
- Oil sufficiently for smooth action. Oil can't be petroleum derived .

To get certified for this BB, post the following:

 - Pic of dull edge or poorly cut green stick.
 - Action pic with disassembled pruners showing method of sharpening.
 - Pic of reassembled, sharpened pruners possibly cutting green stick
 - Describe the sharpening method and oil used.
4 weeks ago