Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   stainless steel or MDF
Wednesday, October 21 2009
Clouds were piling in and I feared it would rain on all the firewood I'd gotten near to (but not into) the woodshed, so I made a massive effort to get an additional cart of wood from the staging area beyond the Chamomile, schlepp all the wood up from the Stick Trail trailhead, split it, and stack it in the woodshed. Though it had come from a long-dead oak tree that had toppled in a wind, the wood was moist enough that I thought I should let it cure some more before burning, so I moved the old dry wood from last season forward and put the new wood in the back bottom. Though it represented three carts' worth of wood, the new wood occupied a disappointingly small amount of the woodshed. Clearly I have a lot more work ahead of me. The other day I made a rough calculation that it takes me 33 hours of work to collect and prepare the wood for the yearly heating season, though that could be off by a factor of two. And it doesn't count the work of actually starting and maintaining fires.
Later I drove into town to hunt for a good bench surface for the brownhouse. The bench is the thing one squats on when one is attempting to empty one's bowels, and a suitable surface should be smooth, durable, and easy to clean. A toilet seat will actually rise above this surface, so it will not be in direct contact with a naked human rump, but it will be near enough to the nastiness that I will want to be able to keep it clean. At first I had it in my mind that I could use a piece of stainless steel as a bench surface, but today in P&T Surplus I determined that stainless steel is too expensive. A small piece of it only large enough to sit beneath of a toilet seat is $20, and that's the price for a piece of scrap. It makes me wonder why we don't see more stainless steel wedding rings.
So then I was in Home Depot looking to see if perhaps linoleum might be a usable surface material. But the only form of linoleum they had was tiles, and these came in boxes containing many more tiles than I would need. In the end I decided to use fine-grain MDF beneath many layers of polyurethane. Also while I was in Home Depot, I bought a large set of PVC fittings that will allow me to build a two-funnel contraption for collecting rainwater from the brownhouse's dual roof gutters. This collecting system will be designed so that water is only collected when the 30 gallon water tank (in the brownhouse cabin) is less than full. Furthermore, no water-gathering pipes on the outside of the brownhouse will ever be completely full of water, thereby protecting them from the effects of freezing weather.

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