Wednesday, November 09, 2005

woven wire

since cousin bruce threw away our promised woven wire we have been trying to figure out how we'll safely fence the cow and not expose the children directly to barbed wire at the edge of their play area. ben, my boss, has graciously offered his stash of old used woven wire. yeah.

now i have to figure how to get it home. our kia suv doesn't have a large storage capacity. i really need a truck. i'd like a used diesel truck that has two separate tanks. in one i'd put diesel fuel--for starting and stopping on. in the other i'd put used vegetable oil--strained filtered and collected locally. there are modifications i'd have to make on the fuel line, to heat the fuel on it's way to the engine. it would be the perfect alternative to attempting to burn bio-diesel. i know how to make it. i know how to build the bio-reactor--i've done it before. mostly, i know how much it sucks to mess around with methanol and lie. especially when precocious kids are liable to get into anything.

i could borrow mikes truck but he offered to sell it to us and we couldn't afford it. isn't there some social faux-pas that dis-allows the borrowing of a vehicle that you declined to purchase?

anyway, ben has offered to loan me his truck. i feel like i'm taking advantage of his generosity because i have accepted so many of his gracious offers. we are trying to be farmers without a truck. this is silly, we need a truck. i'd sell my car but i've taken excellent care of it planning to keep it until it is a pile of rust in the yard--then promptly dispose of it. this area has far too much "lawn furniture" as tabitha calls it.

i guess my stint as a manual laborer should end soon. i have yet to go on a timber frame job, i haven't mortared stone for anything structural yet. these are two large reasons that i keep working with ben. but we need the income that i can make in other fields. sorry to be boring about money but writing this down and reading it later makes me keep my priorities in check.


farmer john said...

I see you like it unrestricted. I saw a young with a kilt just like the one you have only he had tattoos all over his body and a ring in every orifice that I could see. I am not so sure about the ones I couldn't see. But you look rather dashing in yours. Nice blog Karl.

pablo said...

Is the fencing for a different spot from the wattle fencing you want to construct? How's the wattle?

karl said...

john, yes i love to wear my kilts. the freedom is unparalleled. it is one of those things that once you try it you wonder why it isn't more prevalent.

pablo, yeah this first phase of fencing is to contain the cow. then the next phase (in the spring) will be to contain the garden from the chickens--this is where the wattle will probably come into play. we want our chickens to free range. it keeps the insect population down. they really helped this past summer to keep the ticks from taking over the place. we almost got some guinea fowl because they are supposed to be amazing on killing ticks but the chickens are multipurpose and meet our needs more fully. as we know ticks are a big problem here in the ozarks.

pablo said...

So, you're in the Ozarks . . .

stella said...

ahh, but guineas make such pleasant noises! they are great watch dogs.

hopefully, we'll get a few next spring.

i know you are keeping your cow at tabitha's dad's house...have you thought about bringing her over and tethering her until you get your fence in? i tether our 4 goats every day right now and it's been working out great. i was just thinking that if you don't get it finished before she calves, you might want her closer to home for milking purposes. i can't remember though if you have a shelter built for her yet.

the rock rings are really you leave the round of wire in place and attach posts to that? is it something you learned working for ben? i love the look of them!

BeanMama said...

LOVE hearing about all your build-y things, Karl!!

Hey, what hardship do you think it would entail to install a greywater system in a house in my area? Maybe we'll just have to reserve the idea for our next house in Oregon-land. But, it's tempting 'cause we use so much water on the garden and it seems like so much gets wasted. :(


BOOOOOOOOOO on toss-age of needed wire fencing.

karl said...

bean mama, a grey water system is a bit of work to basically run a second drainage system. but it might be easier to go part the way there. for instance your washing machine might be located where it could easily be diverted to a small grey watering / irrigation system.

bio-diesel is great but doing it in the bay area is pretty competitive for used oil sources. plus methanol and lye are nasty business especially where kids are concerned. not to be a nay-sayer on making it yourself but the ingredients are toxic and basically a pain in the butt. there are some great places to purchase the stuff in berkeley and i imagine that the prices are pretty competitive these days. we are not going to do bio-diesel but probably burn straight used vegetable oil--it is a large amount of work to get your vehicle converted over (fuel heaters, separate tanks and the like) i'd be happy to answer any other questions by phone yktn

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