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Old 12-12-2011, 06:52 AM
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I looked around a little, and didn't see a thread named this way, so I figured it was "fair game".
How many of us here carry out activism on in our back yards? My sweetie pie and I are building our home while we live in it, and we use rescued lumber from houses, barns, ans mobile homes that we carefully disassemble, rather than tear down, so that we can get the most use out of the old structure, What we CAN'T use, goes to the recyclers.
We also run our entire house on Wind and solar power, that we have spent less that a thousand dollars on.
fortunately, I am an ace mechanic, and do all the maintainance and repairs on all of our vehicles, the parts coming from the local "Mega-U-Pull.
So, what are you guys doing? Let's see if we can brainstorm a little here.
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Old 12-23-2011, 08:49 AM
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I started building a solar water heater last fall, it hopefully will be up next year. I may redesign it though after a design by a friend, who uses solar air heating and a heat exchanger to minimize costs and maintenance. Basically it is an insulated box painted black with a glass inside that is put at an angle. Air will get hot and go up where there is a heat exchanger that gets the heat into water that then goes up furter to a tank about a meter above that. I think almost all except the insulation and the heat exchanger can be scavenged, so overall costs will probably be at $200. We cannot afford mounting local solar or wind electricity, especially as we are only renting. Materials we use are often scavenged from the dumpsters. We are trying also to set up a wood stove to use instead of natural gas for cooking and oil for warm water and heating the living room. There usually is quite some "trash wood" around to fuel it. Other than that, all we can do at the moment is trying to converse energy - heat only 2 rooms in the house, heat warm water only twice a week and turn off ann electic stuff that is not in use. I wish we could afford some solar power, but these are way more expensive than $1000. If you can tell, how you get your house running with electricity for $1000, I'm interested for sure!
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Old 12-23-2011, 06:22 PM
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Auroraglacialis, what country in central Europe are you? I am posting this now so that you know that someone is working on your problem.
It may be as late as tonight sometime before I can amass the information that I want to send you, but I will get it to you as soon as I can get it all together.
We are having a freak snowstorm right now, and I am having to go outside every hour or so, and brush the snow off the satellite dish. These winters are what are causing quite a backlash from the largely uneducated portions of our population in the United States to ignore all global warming mandates, because many of them put up signs saying how many inches of "Global Warming" they got in the last freak snow storm that hadn't happened in the last hundred years.
Most of them dropped out of High School, and have no idea of the complexities of atmospheric chemistry.
I'll get the information to you as soon as I can.
Niri Te
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Old 12-25-2011, 12:19 PM
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Yeah - they do not understand that actually "freak snowstorms" are part of climate catastrophe. Or "climate change" as it is mildly put to reflect that it is not about warming alone. I heard someone callng it "global weirding" to refer to that the weather will get weird (more "freak" events) and not just warmer everywhere.

Anyways, the country I live in ATM is Germany. I wrote in another thread a bit about the problems here and read you are mostly using wind power from a self constructed machine. That is impossible here as I wrote there. Heck it was already a bit of a buerocratic effort just to get at least a halfway approval to build a carport at the house here (with limitations on height, width, distance to the nearest public road, distance to property borders,... I ignored that it would have to have been built by a certified vendor or carpenter with valid plans on static calculations, so it is not technically legal probably). So the only option I see is solar and photovoltaics are expensive (not to mention that of course attaching them to a rooftop can only be done by a certified carpenter again and putting the electricity to use somehow requires a certified electrician and ... blargh). So all I am playing around with now is solarthermal water heating because that is quite open as long as you dont try and attach it to the house main water system but take the water directly (like running a hose into the bathtub and filling it with the warmed water from the tank). And we ar elooking into getting a wood stove. Of course that one also has to be certified and installed by a certified.... you get the idea - I hate this fracking country for these sort of things - it is more effort to deal with the buerocracies than to actually build anything that is more sustainable...
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Know your idols: Who said "Hitler killed five million Jews. It is the greatest crime of our time. But the Jews should have offered themselves to the butcher's knife. They should have thrown themselves into the sea from cliffs.". (Solution: "Mahatma" Ghandi)

Stop terraforming Earth (wordpress)

"Humans are storytellers. These stories then can become our reality. Only when we loose ourselves in the stories they have the power to control us. Our culture got lost in the wrong story, a story of death and defeat, of opression and control, of separation and competition. We need a new story!"
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Old 12-25-2011, 04:27 PM
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Oh, I know about the system in Germany, after I got out of the Army, I lived in Germany as a civilian, working as an electronics Technician at Radio Free Europe in Munich, and then, my dream job, as a draftsman for the BMW factory, also in Munich. I left Germany for the last time in July of 1982, and have not been back. I hear that the economy tanked for a while after reunification, but now it's OK.
I was hoping that you lived somewhere other than Germany, I was going to send you some panels, but even IF you could pay for the import tariff, you would STILL have to get them cleared by the Tuv.
there is a flip side to the system that you are complaining about though. You don't know how much stuff is done in this country by uneducated, unskilled, drunken, workers that haven't got a CLUE about what it is that they are doing.
That is why Tee and I are building our own house, it is the ONLY way we can be SURE that it will be done CORRECTLY. There are times when I open up a brand new product, and have to take it back 90 miles each way because it wasn't built right.
here are times, when to me, the Berufe Schule system seems like the ONLY way to ensure that people KNOW what they are doing.
Niri Te
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Old 12-25-2011, 05:48 PM
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I want to build a machine that converts atmospheric heat into electricity. No way I could afford the parts though
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Old 12-25-2011, 06:20 PM
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Actually, the uneven heating of the earth, causing the uneven heating of the atmosphere is what causes wind, so you could say that a windmill does just that. Do any of you know what a vertical axis windmill is, and how to make it?
Also, do any of you Europeans know what a window box solar heater is? You guys should be able to get away with THAT.
Niri Te
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Old 12-25-2011, 06:30 PM
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If you want to see how to build the portable window box solar heater in the photo below, go HERE:
DIY Solar Heating with the Heat Grabber
Niri Te
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Old 12-26-2011, 01:36 AM
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I wanted to try and make a windmill once, but I couldn't afford the parts (I know they don't cost a fortune, but I really am broke almost constantly).
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Old 12-26-2011, 05:29 AM
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I'm REALLY sorry to hear that, have you been swallowed into the black hole the employment and economic situation in New Orleans became after the Hurricane?
Niri Te
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Old 12-26-2011, 07:01 PM
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It was really more of a hole in the dirt type of hole The fall in happens pretty fast, but people do climb out in a reasonable amount of time. That is, compared to the rest of the country. The fourth year after Katrina, economic growth was super around here compared to other places, but that was really only because we'd been in so much **** immediately before.
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Old 12-27-2011, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taylorcraftbc65 View Post
there is a flip side to the system that you are complaining about though. You don't know how much stuff is done in this country by uneducated, unskilled, drunken, workers that haven't got a CLUE about what it is that they are doing.
Well then give certificates and let people choose if they want quality or DIY. But to deny DIY solutions doe not make me happy.
What the general assumptiopn here is that most people are wealthy. There is still the myth that we have a solid middle class that can afford to invest like that. And of course with people who actually own a house or flat that is not even wrong. The vast majority does rent though and there they have little saying. The next assumption is that people can just invest now a lot of money but it will pay off rather soon. With photovoltaics it is just a few years. Of course if you own a house and are sure you will live there for some years to come, that investment makes sense - if you can actually find the money to actually do it. In many other cases it does not make much sense. A person renting a flat does not want to invest in the property of the landlord and a landlord does not really benefit directly from his tenants to have lowered heating costs or electricity bills.

But I agree actually that I'd not want my neighbor to build a DIY 50' tower in his garden with a 100kg wind turbine on top just to find it lying in my garden after a storm, having crushed my beehives or something like that.
Population density is just very high here, so for that reason, there are limits to DIY namely because others will be offended or endangered by that - sadly the denisty here is so high that these rules are suffocating freedom.

The solar room heater looks interesting - it seems to work similar to the solar water heater I want to build next year, which also is basically such a box but with a heat exchanger on top. For my house such a construct will not work though as - and this is true for many homes here - the windows do not slide down, but either open like a door or tilt. Also it only works on rooms that face the south side. I guess one could build that solar water heater though and then use the warm water somehow to warm the home.
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Know your idols: Who said "Hitler killed five million Jews. It is the greatest crime of our time. But the Jews should have offered themselves to the butcher's knife. They should have thrown themselves into the sea from cliffs.". (Solution: "Mahatma" Ghandi)

Stop terraforming Earth (wordpress)

"Humans are storytellers. These stories then can become our reality. Only when we loose ourselves in the stories they have the power to control us. Our culture got lost in the wrong story, a story of death and defeat, of opression and control, of separation and competition. We need a new story!"
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  #13  
Old 12-27-2011, 05:18 PM
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That's right, I forgot about those cool two way windows, this would be the only situation where they would not be better than the sliding type of window.
You are right about the certificate situation too, I think that the best situation would be to require schooling and certification for ANY job, just like in Germany, but if you want to do something FOR yourself, BY yourself, you should be allowed to do it.
If I am not being too personal, where do you live in Germany? I am half German, and half Chreokee. My Mother's family all live in the Bad Tolz, Rain, Kochel, and Tegernsee area.
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