Chickens, Greenhouses, Consulting
I recently ordered some materials to build a new chicken coop and wanted to share the basic list of items for those who might be doing the same. I found that the biggest difference was the cost of the sheet metal roofing: Lowes wanted $38 and Home Depot $24 per sheet. So that was the major deciding factor in terms of where to order the bulk of the lumber from. Lowes had a few items in stock that HomeDepot was missing so I ordered a few things from Lowes with free shipping. The main HomeDepot / lumber order cost $79 for the special truck delivery option.
Homemade Chicken Coop:
Below is the breakdown of my orders.
Great e-Book! Written in 1921, these techniques were used to determine the gender of chicken eggs before they were hatched using nothing more than a strong 'candling' light. The benefit of knowing the gender of the eggs is you can sell the male eggs as food and only hatch the females, which can then be sold as mature, egg-laying hens. It is wise to raise a few roosters for trading with other farmers to keep your flock's gene pool clean.
My wife and I designed this greenhouse with Pocono winters in mind - a few feet of snow on the roof, sub-zero temperatures, etc. It’s a SOLID, well built structure. Now that we've had our first snow, photo proof! This came down as around 10 inches of heavy, wet snow.
A few years ago, my wife and I decided that we wanted to build a greenhouse so that we could start working towards self-sufficiency while eating healthier food. We also needed a storage shed, for storing garden tools, food for our livestock, bales of hay, and the like.
I started researching various methods of building greenhouses, ranging from inexpensive plastic hoop tunnels to the pre-built kits made from metal tubing and glass panels. I also reviewed storage solutions like shipping containers, pre-built sheds you can buy from major retailers, and amish-style pole barns.
I had written a review of my berkey water filter when we first purchased it in 2014. We have been using it nonstop, putting approximately 1 gallon per day through it from our city tap water. If you refer to the photo, you can see the layer of fine sediment (dirt) coating the bottom two-thirds old filter. Note that the filter was still working fine, the water tasted great, but the upper tank of the filter wasn't draining because of the clogged filter. It was taking a full night to filter just 1 gallon of water. After replacing the (2) filters, we are now filtering a gallon in less than an hour.
Below is the letter that we sent to Berkey (and their response). Enjoy!
I've written previously about my first off-grid solar power setup. Now, I want to share the addition of a 12-volt water pump.
Product Review: SEAFLO 12V 5.5 GPM 60 PSI Water Diaphragm Pressure Pump
I purchased this water pump so that we can pump harvested rainwater out of our IBC 275 gallon totes - uphill - to our plants. I can plug the water pump directly into my battery booster, my truck, or another vehicle's battery. I've heard that this will also operate when directly connected to a solar panel (no battery required) but I haven't tested this yet.
I recently used this trailer to bring our pigs in for processing, figured it might be helpful for others to see how it was built. The sides are built up to around 3 feet high with 2x12" rough cut material, pressure treated 4x4's, and half-inch carriage bolts. I also added hog panels to bring the overall height of the walls to over 5 feet.
One of our major objectives was to be able to restore the trailer to its original "equipment hauling" function, meaning the walls need to come off easily. (Why buy multiple trailers...?)
"I think one of the things that really separates us from the high primates is that we’re tool builders. I read a study that measured the efficiency of locomotion for various species on the planet. The condor used the least energy to move a kilometer. And, humans came in with a rather unimpressive showing, about a third of the way down the list. It was not too proud a showing for the crown of creation. So, that didn’t look so good. But, then somebody at Scientific American had the insight to test the efficiency of locomotion for a man on a bicycle. And, a man on a bicycle, a human on a bicycle, blew the condor away, completely off the top of the charts.
And that’s what a computer is to me. What a computer is to me is it’s the most remarkable tool that we’ve ever come up with, and it’s the equivalent of a bicycle for our minds.” ~ Steve Jobs