Andy Commons

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since Oct 14, 2010
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Recent posts by Andy Commons

After watching the video found in the original post, YouTube suggested this one.
It's a great summary.
and only 25% as long.

1 year ago
Thanks Anne.
I guess flies just happen. I'll try to pass along the idea of using traps vs poison.
1 year ago
Someone posted on "nextdoor" the following:

Help! Swarming Flies! Hundreds of flies are swarming around the bottom of my big Willow Tree. Part of the tree is dead but the other part is very much alive. The flies are at the base of the alive part. We sprayed them with insecticide the other day and they died but later came back. They look like small black house flies. Can anyone tell me anything about this, please?

I'd like to give them some non-toxic solutions, or even educate them if I could as to why this is happening, but I really have no idea. Does anyone here have thoughts?

Original post is here if you want to try to respond directly:

(link may not work.. I don't know if one has to be logged in, or what ever).
1 year ago
If you like this sort of thing, head on over to the section of the forums.
Where we talk about SKIP,  PEP, Badges and BBs.... All The Time.

1 year ago

Joe Grand wrote:I did a search on permies & found nothing on  thermoelectric module. That does not mean it not here, just that I did not find it.
I read an article on  thermoelectric module in Low Tech Magazine:

Hi Joe,
I read the same article and thought about posting a link here, but I see you already did that.
I love that the server that runs is solar powered.

As for efficiency, did I read it correctly that the heat that is used by the TEG is then given off again, so in a way, the efficiency is actually close to 100%?
If you're running the stove anyway for heat, and you have a way to store the energy produced, why not use a TEG to capture some of it?
I guess like anything, you'd need to figure out the break-even point on the initial setup costs.
1 year ago
Thanks to all. Sadly, due to the location near our outdoor dining area, I decided on extermination. If they were farther away I would have left them alone. Have a good day everyone.
2 years ago
Thanks everyone for your comments. To help further, I was able to capture one as they flew out of the nest.
It's curled up, but you can see the details on the face much better, and the photo with the ruler helps illustrate that it's about 1/2 an inch long (when not curled up).
I took another photo from an angle to get a better shot of the face and tail markings.

As for where the nest is, it's RIGHT next to our outside dinner table. (4 feet from where I sit).
They fly right past my head every minute or so. For that reason, if they are in fact something that could be aggressive, I'm going to have to take action.

Let me know if we're wrong about the Bald Faced Hornet thing.
But it does seem to have 2 sections.. more wasp like than bee.

2 years ago
We have a hive in our retaining wall of small black bees with white stripes. They don't seem aggressive but my wife wants to be sure they are ok. They are about a half inch long. I'm going to try to upload a photo.

Ps. I'm in Missoula. If that helps.
2 years ago
Hi Mike,
What about SDR are you interested in?
There are several flavors of SDR. Are you interested in 2 way communication? Ham Radio?
Just listening online?
I play around with this stuff, and am happy to try to help.
2 years ago
Hi all,
I hope this post will be of use to someone out there...  

I just heard about a documentary that is launching that seems like it's right up the Permies Forum alley.

It's called "The Need to Grow".

Starting today, (10/10/19) you can enjoy free online viewing of the documentary (for only 5 days). Oct 10 - 15, 2019.
Visit to see the trailer and sign up to watch the full thing.

text lifted from the landing page:

Join in the global online premiere of Rosario Dawson’s award-winning documentary that many are calling the environmental film the world has been waiting for. With the planet on the brink of ecological disaster, and chronic disease rates skyrocketing, this is a story of real-world SOLUTIONS.

It will warm your heart, fill you with hope, and inspire you to take action.