Conrad Farmer

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since Feb 28, 2014
Western Upper Peninsula MI
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Recent posts by Conrad Farmer

We had similar situation - old coop was in bad shape, drafty and we lost chickens due to build up of moisture in the winter so were looking for a new coop

Found the 1920s Woods Fresh Air Poultry book online and decided that was our ticket. (book online at Woods Fresh Air Poultry House -- discussions here: Fresh Air Coop Discussion)

Used pallets to build the frame on store-bought skids and purchased lumber for roof - used cast off (free) windows for the clerestory. 8 x 12 (Woods design is based on golden ratio 1.6 - so basically a square main area - in our case 8x8, with fresh air "porch", in our case 4' - so not exactly golden but darn close). Baffle board will be installed on rear rafters today to further seal against drafts as the temps will decrease the next few weeks and snow continues to accumulate toward our average of 200"+ :)

Our 9 chickens and 1 rooster LOVE it, and even though it has been below zero several nights, no signs of frostbite. Chickens are roosting normally (not clumped together) signalling they are warm enough without needing extra body heat from other chickens.

Solar power project begun but not finished for the season extension bulb and the water warmer so using extension cord power at the moment. Needing a larger panel and larger battery for the warmer. Did have a small aquarium pump in the 5 gallon water bucket and that kept water in the bucket from freezing but the nipples were freezing up so had to go to a small (250watt) submersible heater.
2 weeks ago
Welcome Leigh,
Looking forward to reading your sequel.
It's amazing how much of our historical expertise has been lost to convenience and instant gratification.

Refreshing always to see how "slow and steady" DOES win the race. Been doing that here, too.

One of the areas that is a challenge for some is translating the principles and applications to large holdings.
Best way I've found is to look at the design as a collection of smaller, but fully interconnected "homesteads" and focus on one at a time - just have to be sure to always design with the surrounding "homesteads" in mind.
4 months ago

paul wheaton wrote:As we explained in the Q&A yesterday, one of the main reasons we are doing this is to get enough coin to get a proper well on the lab.  So the extra coin is going to the well.  

Next, if we add three things to further the experiments, we find no change in the amount of people signing up.  Nor do we find existing backers raising their pledges.   But if we add things to the $100 level, we not only find existing backers raising their pledges, but we also find an increase in the number of people backing the kickstarter.  

So, we are making the best out of what we have learned.




Aha!! Genius expertise at work -and as is evident I missed the q&a yesterday. Thanks for the clarification.
6 months ago
Congrats on crushing this kickstarter!!!

Question on the stretch goals - it is great that there are more goodies for the bigger goal(s) but shouldn't it also reflect an increase in scope? Maybe I'm missing it in all the detail - but I see no additional goals for the actual experiment(s)?? There was a thread begun that described some more/better data logging, but I am wondering how, if at all, besides higher quality video stuff etc. the additional funding will be applied?

Happy to have backed it and seen it go off like a rocket :)
6 months ago
A last minute idea here for the goodies - what about the 3 Mike Oehler videos in the 100 or 200 level? The books are there, but maybe the videos would be a good for those who want to see the "roots" (pun intended!) of the project?
7 months ago
Extremely well done - kudos to all - this looks really ready to rock!

Suggestion/comment: what if there were a level between the 200 & 500, say 250 or 350 or such that added a PDC certification upon submission of design to Wheaton labs - maybe a build of their own wofati greenhouse?? Encourage more active world domination participation!!!
7 months ago
Kickstarter looks super fantastic!
I'd like an affiliate link please
7 months ago

Mike Haasl wrote:I wonder if the early words about "Experiments about X, experiments about Y, experiments about Z" might sound even better if you said something like "At Wheaton Labs we've done hundreds of experiments, maybe thousands.  We're learning from many experiments with RMHs, ATI, Hugelkulture, etc.  My Patreon peeps want us to shift our priorities and make this be the next one...."

I'm thinking it might help the viewer understand that you don't just do an experiment here or there.  And that the pictures in the video are of things you've done so you have some street cred.  Maybe little words floating around the Allerton Abbey pictures and hugels could convey that without changing the script...



Agree with this sentiment and think the video other than that slight tweak is fantastic!

It does give one the impression that the timeframes for completing this experiment is a year or longer  .  .. so maybe addressing that upfront and clarifying??? Maybe like "you get all the goodies AND some weekly/monthly/quarterly video and or podcast updates along the way until the final product is released??
7 months ago