Leif Ing wrote:Well, I'm new to the world of permaculture (via finding Jack Spirko and thesurvivalpodcast)...
I like reading your thoughts and think it'd be nice to meet you one day!
May I check you've discovered Paul's podcasts? He hasn't had as much time to put into them recently, but there are other 300 of them and listening to them from start to end is quite the education: https://permies.com/forums/f-88/podcast
Bill Crim wrote:
Having watched some of the Kickstarter for the PDC it was evident to me that Paul was absent at times . He appeared stressed and had a lot of stuff to deal with. I might also add the atmosphere has now changed and the ATC seems to be a much better environment for all.
I agree Kerry (is that your name, it is my location!), the atmosphere is very different on the ATC. I watched some of the tour that Josiah kindly uploaded yesterday. Paul was so much lighter and happier during this than by the end of the PDC.
I wrote my two cents on their YouTube video. It took a while to work out what to say, I've been watching them for months - ever since I built my RMH alongside theirs using the same plans from Ernie & Erica, and I've been loving their daily PDC vlogs. That said, Paul inspired me to quit my IT job, move to Ireland and start a permaculture based smallholding - I know which side my bread is buttered.
It was surreal to watch their latest video, so many of the claims were emotive, subjective and unsubstantiated. It really isn't how I'd have expected them to behave, even if they did believe everything they said.
It is very easy to tear down and criticise. I wish they really stopped and thought about the impact Paul's work has had on global permaculture, before feeling qualified to pass judgement with their newly gained PDC whose ink had only just dried. Even a few of their audience questioned the fairness of what they chose to do.
Suspicious as to how thick your skin can really be Paul, please keep into perspective they are just one couple on a different path to yours. Remember all those who think you and your contributions are awesome and are looking forward to watch the lab evolve over time.
Not crazy at all Paul, this is an amazing offering.
Perhaps the things I most look forward to are the drone ride and extended tour. I've tried to visualise your place whilst listening to all your podcasts, but seeing the place in detail will be awesome!
Whilst for those that can, getting to visit Wheaton Labs as part of the PDC certification would be awesome. May I ask if it could be an option for those that can't travel (due to distance/work/other) could complete it remotely - much like how Geoff Lawton and others offer full certification online?
I am most definitely going to support the kickstarter, but as the rewards have changed I am now leaning towards the $150 level rather than the $100 originally. If I went for the $150 level today, can I simply change my tier to a higher level (such as the pdc option), or shall I hold back for another couple of days?
That is entirely fair Paul, I've listened to your lab review podcasts only recently, I understand entirely and think it is awesome you are protecting your progress. I can't even fairly say I'm not a flake, as at least once before I have been.
The barrier is getting the visa, ticket and insurance. The combination looks to be approaching $1800, so the two courses would be what justifies such a hit to funds.
In the specifics I think I meant I could pay you the 5 or so week work shortfall before the courses started and earn it back, minimising your risk? I get that is a pain though- just I'd been checking the richsoil routinely for this since January looking for updates.
Either way, thank you for taking the time to explain Paul.
As fred said, there was a bit of a snafu with paypal with #3, so, since you inquired before I announced it was closed, you are allowed to be #4 of 3. A bit like harry potter in the tri wizard tournament
Hi Paul, my apologies. I would LOVE to do this. I've solved the fight problem (well, I've rationalised parting with the big pile of gold to get the air ticket). The problem I've just confirmed the details of is my availability. Could there be a way I pay my $100 today to attend the ATC and PDC, arrive early May (notice I need to give people here), and complete a portion of my work trade after the event? I realise there is a trust issue there, and perhaps is conditional on the requisite trust having been earnt by the start of the courses?
Paul (or another, as I realise you will be busy), is there a work trade place left still for both the PDC and appropriate technology course?
I live in Ireland and have listened to all your podcasts at least once. I would love to attend. I will start researching costs for the plane ticket in anticipation I might be able to get the last place!
A few years on, may I ask what success you had Leanna dealing with rushea? I have a 3 acre field here in Ireland that is full of 4ft high rushes. I am half way through brush cutting them but they are already growing back! A few sources have said you need to just keep weakening them. I also have plans to improve drainage, but need to fell them first.
Glenn Herbert wrote:The common advice from experts is that a 6" RMH can handle about 35' of duct, minus 5' for every 90 degree elbow. A really good chimney can maybe increase this a bit.
Ah. I'd been working my plans on a lot of the information in the annex 6 inch plans by Ernie and Erica - which had 25ft horizontal ducting and 7 x 90 degree turns (though looking at the diagram wonder if that is counting the two 90 degrees in the j tube?
I may have to go for a short straight bench rather than the l shape that would much better suit the space?
I have 150 bricks, of unusual dimensions – about 7 inch square and 2 inches thick, and had thought the thinner dimensions would leave more space for insulation.
The consensus on here agrees with my leaning to insulate the rmh from my external wall, so I will. Thank you.
I am surprised (but have no experience to back that up) that the H shape cowl would slow down the draft. If anything I could imagine the opposite. Have you used a simpler witches hat?
Thank you. I am glad to be able to use the lid as a cleanout for the barrel quite safely.
Thank you for the youtube link. I can't believe I haven't found that myself. After sifting through hours of videos showing scary flaming barrels of death that people have labelled a rocket stove – all with hundreds of thousands of views, I am surprised such an incredibly good sequence isn't more visible!
I know you have voiced concerns of using 'fake firebrick' as they absorb so much heat at the start of a burn. I am fairly certain mine are this sort, hence wondering if I should place them as the outer layer and the clay flue in the centre with a thick insulation middle layer as the cob would absorb less of the heat?
The word cowl is common here for chimneys tops The chimney will go a good metre taller than the apex of my roof, but would you advocate the traditional witches hat, a h cowl (what should I call it here!?), or one of those spinning domes?
More last questions (sorry, I don't know if I'm over-thinking this, I just don't want to mess it up!)
I have a lot of rockwool gifted to me by a neighbour. Stiff thick boards, which I'm sure I can reform into a circle. I just want to place part of it in a fire to make sure that I'm not mistaken and find it is actually glass wool with the associated much lower melting point – unless somebody knows a less crude way to find out!
On a 6 inch system, may I ask what the maximum horizontal run is, and the impact of this with each 90 degree bend? - Due to the shape of the existing chimney I have to chose between making accessible cleanouts and letting the exit flue get reheated by passing the barrel on the way out, or save adding two 90 degree bends on the run.
Hello all. I've read watched and listened to all I can find and planned the build, prepared the site and sourced all my materials. I am however left with a few questions where I've not been able to find answers clear enough for me to understand!
Heat riser construction.
I have a lot of fire brick, the kind that absorbs and holds a lot of heat, meaning it would take quite a while to reach a heat to get a complete burn. For the two skins of the heat riser (with a thick loose vermiculite centre), I had planned one skin to be made of fire brick set in cob, and the other a cob flue, made using a wire mesh within it to solely hold its shape whilst drying. My question is which material should go in the very hot inner skin, with the other on the outer closer to the edge of the barrel?
Using the lid of the barrel
My barrel has a lid with metal clasp, but the rubber seal that made it air tight burned with the original paint using Ernie's clever clay paper mache solution.
Can I use this lid as the top of my barrel to provide a handy way to clean it out, possibly using fire rope to create a good seal? Part of me worries about air managing to leak out of it and wondered what other people's exeriences have been?
Cob bench on damp wall
My cottage in Ireland has 4ft thick stone walls, possibly an extra heat storage. However the walls are somewhat damp and whilst optimistically I might hope the heat and breathable earthen plasters would actually help alleviate that, I do realise that cob and water tends towards mud!
Knowing that wood construction is far more common in America, I still hoped others may have some experience of this and whether I may need to add a damp proof membrane and then some insulation to protect the membrane?
I've read of people using three equal t's joined together to make a H chimney, which I've heard is a very good all round cowl to protect against down drafts. Does that seem like a good plan or have other people found better solutions?
My apologies for the length, I just want to make sure I end up making a rmh with the smallest number of errors possible and the very least avoid any tier one mistakes!
Central heating here is nearly always water filled radiator's connected by 15/22mm copper pipe, the contents being heated by a boiler and then pumped around. So, it does seem likely that brand new stove pipe will be needed. The pipe alone will be many hundreds. I wondered if metal air ducting would be of sufficient heat resilience, perhaps after a certain run past the manifold?
The cheap (only due to random surplus) fire brick looks like this: https://www.dropbox.com/sc/ya4br0utj3havxg/AADrdEfQdHvD4Kooev3fSlyRa. I'm somewhat sure I'll be able to work out how to use the odd dimensions to make the needed channels, but wondered about it having the right heat tolerance's and performances - I read a previous post of yours that said that some fire brick is fairly poor for this job.
Having read and listened to much about RMHs, I am at the point where I need to build one in time for winter.
I plan to mostly follow Erica and Ernie's 6" annex design (possibly with an insulated brick heat riser), though part of me feels I've read so much now I am delaying myself by overthinking the many options.
From a dual wish to save money and placate building regulations, may I have people's opinion on the suitability of using firebricks (photo attached of surplus stock a local guy has), instead of reclaimed red brick (which is quite expensive around here)?
As I am struggling to find any 2nd hand stove pipe here in Ireland, and having read the bendable ducting stuff creates too much air drag, does anybody have any suggestions for cheaper alternatives to brand new stove pipe?
I truly understand the feeling of urgency in moving forward and building a sustainable and healthy life.
I would repeat the suggestion of reading (or perhaps more immediately watching as many youtube videos as you can find) Joel Salatin's ideas on this. If raising beef could be your thing, then he shows that very little capital is needed to rent land and setup with portable electric fencing and a highly efficient design to produce profits that could buy you your land. If establishing a food forest is closer to what you want to do then he also talks about finding an established older farmer to partner with. You build up a trusting relationship by helping them for a couple of years, then you could setup a business that compliments and enhances the existing farm rather than competes with.
Another alernative, and one I think your introduction precludes would be to join the rat race, get a well paid job for 5-10 years following the principles of the blogs Early Retirement Extreme and Mr. Money Moustache to build up the money to buy a homestead outright.
Hope this helps. There are so many options, and at 32 I still find such decisions impossible, let alone at 17. A gap year WWOOFING or alike could give you time to gain experience and perspective to make better decisions.
If you find the Amazon sales improvements you are looking for, might it be a good time to also look again at selling internationally. A few times I know I would've bought from you but the postage costs were very high.
Whilst the UK market is smaller than the USA, with Ireland we make up nearly 70 million potential customers. If you find a distribution point in the EU (I may well be interested - though thought Amazon could take on the logistics), then you could also then sell to the 27 other EU countries without any further import/value added taxes.
As an example of the current market here, Amazon.co.uk does not list your cards, and on eBay.co.uk the only packs shipping from within the EU are selling for $46.17 a single pack!