Oystein Skjaeveland

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since Sep 21, 2010
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Recent posts by Oystein Skjaeveland

Hello everybody.
I live in Norway (north western Europe). On my property is a small creek that has maybe somewhere around 5-10 liters/second of water, an a head of about 160 - 180 meters, depending. I wish to find out how to harness this water for electric power. The output may be somewhere in the range of 5 - 10 kW. I found a price for a 10 kW turbine generator here that would be about 20 000 USD. I order to save money (and to learn more) I want to find out how much of the work it is possible to do myself.
We have a small organic ice cream factory on the farm, so we could use a lot of the electricity ourselves. The walk in freezer for example runs continuously all year round. So the electricity delivered should be 230 volts 50 Hz. The system should be grid connected so we could sell occasional surplus to the local energy company.
I appreciate any help and advice.
2 years ago
Thank you for your answer. We will see how it goes with the various types.
The Guatemalan corn is from the highlands, I believe around 1000 meters above sea level.
They did grow avocado there, but not the tropical stuff from the coast (like for example citrus, mango and pineapple), if I remember correctly.
3 years ago
I have sown two types of corn (maize) this year, they are still in pots waiting to be planted in the garden. They are one variety of sweet corn, and one popcorn maize.
I live in Norway, northern Europe, in a coastal climate, and corn is probably on the border of being possible here. Other places in Norway, with a more inland and warmer climate, grow sweet corn, however, and some places also grow maize for animal feed (silage). I have also grown a few cobs in my climate earlier. It should be possible, if the summer is warm and the seeds are sown early.

I am sorry if I mix up and use the words "maize" or "corn" incorrectly, I don't know the distinction, if any.

I have read that corn can answer rapidly to selection breeding, and would like to harvest seeds to get better adapted plants in the future.
Should my two varieties this year for this reason be grown far apart?

Another, almost unrelated question: I visited Guatemala in 2002, and brought home some maize seeds, red, black and white. These will be flour maize, I believe. I had forgotten about them, and found them again and tried to sprout them this spring, with no success. I have read later that maize seeds can be viable for 3-4-5 years, so my seeds are probably way too old. But can there be any tricks to see if maybe one in 1000 may still germinate? Red maize would be nice to grow. The seeds have been stored dry and not too warm.
3 years ago
Hello. I am trying to extract birch sap from trees on my property, with the intention to make birch syrup. I have bought a reverse osmosis (RO) system to concentrate the sap to save boiling time. The RO system comes with a pump to push the sap through the filters. The pump is electric. I was originally thinking to power the pump directly, that is mechanically without electricity, connecting the shaft of the pump to a small turbine wheel, possibly with some gearing in between. But I was told that it may not be a good idea to open ut the pump in question to access the shaft, because of thermal protection, so it would be easier to use the turbine to make the electricity needed. There is a small creek running through the property where the birches are. I wish to do the concentrating there without having to transport all the sap down to my house. There is no electricity in the birch forest. I have been looking online for various combinations of turbine wheels (pelton), generators, shafts and so on. But I have been thinking that maybe the easiest would be if I could use an electric pump and run it in reverse as a generator (running water through it), so that it produces electricity instead of consuming it. The pump for the RO system runs on 24 volts and I think it is 150 W. My terrain is steep and the head of a hydro power system could be anywhere from 1 to 100 meters. The water flow is not huge, it varies a lot and may for example be 5 - 10 liters per second.
Would anyone here have any advice?

But - I just now saw that the pump runs on DC. And a turbine would make AC, and I would need and inverter. Maybe the easiest would be to carry up a few car batteries? Or check if the pump could be disassembled and be connected directly to a turbine wheel after all. I have not received said pump yet. Anyway, if any of you had suggestions, I would be grateful.
3 years ago
Does anyone have seeds of improved Meyer lemon to share? I live in Norway, northern Europe, this lemon is said to do better in cold climates. Thank you in advance!
4 years ago
Hello everyone.
Does anyone want to share good and simple recipes for making dinner from my chickens (cockerels)? Preferrably not too complicated or time consuming, since I am probably not a very great chef and the days are filled with many tasks. They are waiting in the freezer for your suggestions.
5 years ago
I live in Norway in northern Europe, on the south-western coast. The climate here is mild and wet. It rains a lot, frost can occur from October till May but is not dependable. Mulching here is associated with a problem: slugs. They live and lay eggs under the mulch. If I for example plant no-dig potatoes under mulch, many will be eaten (to some extent) by slugs. One year I had to resow the whole of my carrot planting, I suspect the slugs ate the seedlings. This was not mulched, but under fleece, and the slugs would have a hiding place nearby. I often mulch an overgrown part of the garden with cardboard and straw (discarded hay). But next year plants with stong roots come up through the mulch again. But the main problem is slugs. We are also infested with the brown iberian slug here.
5 years ago
We are considering having two pigs this summer. They will probably be here from 8 weeks of age in early summer until harvest time in October or thereabout. The will be outside and moved around in a field we want dug. Small pens moved almost daily, with electric fencing. Does anyone have recommendations or examples or plans or ideas for a small, lightweight, moveable, uncomplicated, inexpensive and not too ugly shelter for these pigs? It would be good if one person could move the shelter alone. The temperature will be 10-15 centigrades or more (we have a cold spring this year). The shelter does not need to be insulated. The pigs will only be brought outside when they can tolerate the temperature, otherwise we can use a heating lamp. Thank you for your input.
9 years ago
Here in Norway (north western Europe) ash,elm and willow were considered among the best fodder trees. Others were also used (birch, rowan). It was common to dry bundles of branches with leaves to store for winter fodder. My cows seemed to prefer the ash leaves over silage or hay in winter.
9 years ago
Just out of curiosity: Would anyone know if it is possible to run a vacuum milking machine on pressured air or built up vacuum made with a wind mill or similar? The question came to mind now because many places in my area have lost their electricity because of a storm, and people with cows have trouble milking.
9 years ago