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Monthly Archives: January 2009

Winter ‘Driveway’ Driving

With no actual driveway in we have been using an old road to get into our place..it is NOT pleasant or easy to drive. It took me a while to release my deathgrip on the steering wheel when driving in and grow comfortable driving in with the truck..but now that the road has been driven over in the winter and beaten down and frozen solid it is MUCH easier to take. We drive about 1.5km in on this road and in the summer/fall it takes us 9 minutes. Not really blazing speed but it gives you an idea how rough it is. These days we get out in 4 minutes..the hugh bumps and dips have frozen into smoothness..and I must say it is MUCH better then we could have hoped for. In the fall I remember the conversations about how bad winter would be..but this is making things MUCH easier to take..We still have not gotten stuck or had any issues..I hope this keeps up!

..the first turn..it is packed down well now!..

I really hate this time of year for daylight though..We leaver for work it is dark..we get hime from work and it’s dark..but we are over a month out from the shortest day of the year so everyday will get a little better…

..the rough patch in the summer..smoothest part in the winter.

 ..I cannot wait to have a driveway all to myself someday!
 

..coming up the hill..

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Posted by on January 27, 2009 in Transportation

 

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What is old is new again..the ongoing saga of a car battery (or off-grig lighting v2)

reduce, reuse, recycle and now…re-abuse. Since I got rid of my 1999 Hyundai Accent we have had a car battery kicking around. I could not get rid of a half decent car battery now could I?..so I carried it with me on the move. I stuck it in my shed and half-forgot about it.

Well today I had a bright idea..a light.  Duh…Powered by a battery. wow. Yes..should not be a newsflash for me..but I have been thinking about systems..not a single light..Mounts and carriers, not a single battery.but there was also a 12 v light that I got when I purchased my panels..so I hooked it all up. It was very complicated..I hooked the red wire to the red wire and the black wire to the black wire..and then there was light!

I know it took 4 months..sometimes I cannot see the forest through the trees..this is really going to simplify things..no more having to use the headlamps in the morning or to read..no more trying to locate a light when it is pitch black..and no more fancy lights…this is about as low as I want to go..actually last week was as low as I want to go..but I am NOT going back to gas laterns or flashlights to read..this whole lighting thing has been 2 step backwards and 1 step forward..it was all fine while we had the power inverter/battery..but that went kaput. Its Jan now and its dark when we leave and dark when we get home..so there is no sense in having dark WHILE we are at home is there?..NO!!!

 
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Posted by on January 17, 2009 in lighting

 

Winter Plowing for those without plows.

the 'plow' in action

..we have no plow and it will get tougher to get in as the winter progresses..and nobody is going to plow that road so I needed to take measures into my own hands. When in doubt ask the locals with camps in the area. My next door neighbor was out at the camp as I passed by the other day so I popped out to chat with him. Over the course of the conversation he described a tried and tested method to assure the road is passable without using a plow: a tree. When is a tree not a tree and at what point does it become a plow..the answer to both of these is this: when you drag it behind your truck. Yes..grab a bushy spruce and cut it off so it is 15 feet long. Attach it to the rear hitch and drive. As you go through thick snow you will create ruts..the tree pulled behind the truck does 2 things..levels out the snow behind the truck and fills in the ruts. If you keep doing this after snorms it will create a road of snow that is on top of the ground..so the more snow the thicker the road..as winter progresses it can be as thick as 4 feet according to my neighbor. So..I tried it….after a couple of storms the road is in great shape!

ruts..be gone!

..while the tool is not pretty it is pretty effective in battling uneven driveways!

storage is easy and replacing the plow if it breaks costs nothing!

...and the results are hard to argue with!

You can see there IS a rut in this picture..too much sun melts some areas and they become soft and you sink in..there is only 2 spots that really get sun so this is not a problem..plus this shot is right at my driveway and I think there is an artesian spring somewhere on the hill on my property cause this area is always wet..even when conditions are dry. Either way..locals as a source of information are a super assett!! Works like a charm!

 
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Posted by on January 13, 2009 in Construction, Transportation

 

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