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Tag Archives: off-grid blog

Power in the Bank

1/2 of the battery bank (4 of 8) were officially toast so we bit the bullet and upgraded part 1 of our power system and got some replacement batteries…AC225’s…these 6 are actually almost 2 times the capacity of our ancient trojan batteries. To make sure we keep them fully topped up we will also be installing our additional solar panels and upgrading the panel to charge controller wiring with some proper low gauge braided wiring too..over the next couple of weeks.

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..been raining like a banshee around here as of late, the old beaverdam @ the stillwater cannot even be seen..higher than spring water levels…scary high.

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We will keep the old batteries charged up and beside the new bank until next spring when they will move into boler for portable power…or emergencies in case anything goes awry..as they tend to do.

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Posted by on September 26, 2012 in Construction, power, Purchases

 

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Limey

Our most productive part of the garden..too bad this part is just a pile of dirt that was on the other side of the yard..we put down some extra squash plants which would not fit in the garden and they are 20 times the size of the ones we put in the garden…

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..and final prep work for the summer landscaping..lime pellets for the soil..takes time to release and work its magic but the grass is going on this weekend..one way or the other..

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..hard to get an idea for the whole area but it looks like a bigger version of the picture above..We can’t wait for grass and hopefully the end of Spring mud being trodden into the house.

 
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Posted by on September 4, 2012 in Construction, hard labour

 

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Saving the World…

..one toad at a time…

‘Hey there lil fella..looks like you have some mud on ya’
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WhAT!….or not.

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He hopped away after a brief rest period…usually we let nature be but the toad was waving for help so we felt obligated to help..after throwing the life preserver and it doing nothing we gently shook the snake by the tail and it slithered away hungry..and fast with Loki tormenting it from 3 feet away.

 
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Posted by on August 15, 2012 in Animals

 

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Hot Garden

It has been HOT..in the area we are supposed to get around 90-100mm of rain in July..so far we have had 2-5mm..not much..and coupled with the fact that it has been hovering near 30c for weeks it means extra watering. The well is in good working order and we have been watering all the time so the garden has been growing like mad..we have never had snow-peas get this tall this fast before and everything else is doing great too:

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..and we figured out what these massive growths are now that they are beginning to flower, they are sunflowers…and since the only seeds we had were black sunflower seeds we assume that this is what has been growing here..not that we planted any but when throwing down seeds for the chickens to eat must have caused this..cause there is no other explaination..

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….but I had to relocate the sunflowers due to some excavation work..more details coming soon!

 
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Posted by on July 17, 2012 in Gardening, produce, water

 

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Vacationing is Hard Work

WARNING: the linked last picture address is of the remains of a dead chicken killed by a wild animal. (Not trying to be gross or anything but I just looked for some pictures to try to aid me in trying to identify what killed my chicken and maybe the identification process I use could (hopefully) aid someone in the future). Sorry.

The dawgs are beat after a 3 day vacation..chasing hundreds of squirrels made for a sluggish Loki and Jango..it would also appear that Loki needs some boundary training.
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Out for a canoe trip to find an appropriate midstream rock for the Canada Day fireworks display..

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A very fun trip on a beautiful weekend. We took a leisurely drive home along some new routes and got home in the early evening. We were going to be gone for 3 days so we loaded up the chickens and since the chicks were @ 5 weeks we decided to let them out fulltime like the rest of the chickens. With our regular chickens we keep them penned in (except flying Hoppy). With the chicks and Ma hen we put out extra food in a couple of locations and opened the gates to their pen..we have never had a predator problem with the other chicken pen having been left open fulltime so 3 days should be fine…

Returning home from the trip and everything appears ok, the penned chickens are all OK. Checking on the chicks and they are all in the penned in portion of their mini-coop..but there is a tuft of feathers near the entrance to the outside where I opened up the pen to let them roam..then 4 ft away a larger group of feathers..then 15 feet away some more feathers and then I cannot see anymore feathers..by this time Loki has a scent and I follow her 50 feet further in the woods to find the remains of a chicken. Ma is no more.

Sooooo..after a very fun but tiring trip we resecured everything chicken related for both pens. Gates glosed, coop entrances closed and lit up. We moved the mini-coop and put 2 solar directional lights on it so I can see it at night and we put the motion sensitive security camera on the mini-coop instead of the road so we can identify whatever it was that did this.

The chicks are almost 6 weeks old and should be fine now…and as I finish entering this post (@11:30pm) I hear a sound which I have not heard in months..an owl hooting..and it is also louder then I have ever heard it..curious.

If you do want to see a picture of the remains, go to it by cutting and pasting the link if you would like to see it:

(Graphic gross description: whatever it was ripped open the chicken body cavity and ate some of the breasts but the chicken was found breasts down, the top eaten off from the base of the tailfeathers right up to the top of her head. No real teethmarks or anything..nothing to make me think it was an owl either.)

..could an owl do that?

 
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Posted by on July 4, 2012 in Animals, coop, Fowl, Wildlife

 

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Long Term Security

We were having some issues with batteries with the scoutguard trail camera ever since I dropped it and snapped off the battery lid..so onto ebay I went and for $6 I got a 6v cord attachment. With our 6v golf cart batteries which run our place we lost 1 battery..totally fried..image

Which means we needed to take 2 batteries out of the bank to keep everything wired @ 12v..so we have this battery to run a trail camera now. Using some spare wiring I hooked it all up.

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We still need to hook it up to a charger but it is all working fine now. The trail camera uses 8 AAA batteries a month so the cord should pay for itself pretty quickly..now I just need a place to covertly place all the gear and hopefully i never have to think ‘I wonder if the trail camera batteries are still good?’

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Posted by on May 20, 2012 in Construction, security

 

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slab table version 2

here is the newest version of the slab table we have been working on. I was working on the table top and after I was finished the second round of planing and sandind I thought I would see what it looked like…I took some of the brackets¬† that we bought at ikea and mounted them in a corner, placed the slab on top and leveled it off, attached the Ikea table leg (after twist adjusting the height) and secured it all..looks pretty good and we are happy with the semi-finished product..so far anyway. I am going to sand it again to get rid of some of the extra scrapes and dry areas then we pick some stain and we will be in the final stretch..and no more eating on the couch (but after it was up we had supper..and finished our meals on the couch before remembering we now had a corner table to eat on).

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Posted by on April 29, 2012 in Construction

 

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