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How to Build a Rainwater Collection System: 9 steps

How to Build a Rainwater Collection System: 9 steps
Steps Method 1 of 4: Getting Rain Barrel Supplies 1Obtain one or more water storage barrels. You can buy a water storage barrel online, but it's cheaper to get a used one from a company that uses large barrels to store food and other merchandise (just be sure to clean it thoroughly with soapy water). A rain barrel can also be made from a large plastic trash can. Get a barrel that will hold 30 to 55 gallons of water. 2Get additional supplies to turn the barrels into a water collection system. Method 2 of 4: Building a Rain Barrel Platform 1Level an area right next to your downspout. 3Stack concrete blocks on top of the pea gravel. Method 3 of 4: Adding the Spigot and Overflow Valve 1Drill a spigot hole in the side of your barrel. 4Make an overflow valve. Method 4 of 4: Assembling the Collection System 1Connect the downspout elbow to the downspout. 4Connect the additional barrels. Tips Ad Warnings Sources and Citations

How to Can, Freeze, Dry and Preserve Any Fruit or Vegetable at Home Home canning, freezing and preserving, whether it is jam, salsa, applesauce, apple butter, pickles or whatever, is easy; with these simple, fully illustrated directions with detailed tips and tricks. Save money, eat healthier, with no additives or chemicals... and with much better taste! This page provides the links to our illustrated recipes and canning* directions - so easy ANYONE can do it, along with a multitude of other recipes, guides and canning instructions. For safety, these recipes closely follow the USDA recipes, Ball Blue Book and/or those provided by major university extension services. Whenever possible, instructions also are provided to allow you to choose the options that are important to you; such as types of cooking equipment or choices in sweeteners: honey, Stevia (in a prepared form like Truvia, it measures same as sugar; if you use another form, you'll need do your own conversion) - or Splenda, if you prefer, , Stevia, fruit juice or sugar. United States Contents:

Best Animals for the Small Homestead Best Animals for the Small Homestead by Peggy Deland If one of your goals is self-sufficiency (or close to it) and you're not a vegan, you'll need a source of milk, eggs, and possibly meat. Even if you are a vegan, keeping animals on your homestead can provide you with natural fiber or wool to sell. Raising your own animals also gives you peace of mind -- you know that your animals were raised humanely and treated with care. Think your homestead is too small to raise animals? Goats Goats are among the most practical and versatile animals you can raise. One thing to keep in mind if you choose to have goats on your homestead is that different breeds are suited to different purposes. Poultry Chickens are an obvious choice for a small homestead because they don't require much space and will provide your family with eggs and fresh meat. Other poultry are also worth considering. Hogs Hogs are another good choice for the small homesteader. Sheep Catfish Don't have a pond? Small Animals

Sustainable Resolutions For 2012 « Corporate Social Responsibility 2012 has been designated International Year of Sustainable Energy for All. As the tradition goes at this time of the year, people make resolutions for the nascent year; considering the theme reserved for 2012, these plans should include actions to make our lives greener and more sustainable. he organization says that hunger, poverty and climate change are issues that concern everyone and it recommends several steps that could make our lives greener in 2012. Here are some of them: Recycle: Recycling is the first commandment of the church of green. Turn off the lights: You shouldn’t turn off the light only on March 31, when we’ll be celebrating Earth Hour. Switch to CFLs: Australia has already “banned the bulb” and by 2012 the country estimates it will have managed to avoid four million tons of greenhouse gas emissions. Say no to bottled water: Buying bottled water, especially in developed countries where tap water is as good as it gets, is obscene. Like this: Like Loading...

What about Cob Building Codes and Cob Permit Requirements When people first learn about building homes and structures out of cob they get really excited and their imaginations go wild with creative ideas and all the possibilities that the material offers for creating things. Then at some point in our excitement we get a rude awakening to the thought of how we might actually go about building a cob building in our bureaucratic, twisted society. We tend to worry about how we’ll make it past all the laws, regulations, and building codes required to build according to our own imaginations. Not to mention the expensive inspections! In the United States, we follow the International Building Code. The fact is that our current scale system is flawed, behind the microscopic codes money has become the ultimate measure for everything. According to the International Code Council (ICC), the purpose of the International Building Code is to “safeguard public health, safety and general welfare… from hazards attributed to the built environment.”

How to Build a Food Dehydrator - DIY When I first took up self-­reliant coun­try living in the 1960s, I tried drying foods in a sandwich of old window screens laid at a sun-facing angle across a pair of sawhorses, but found that Mother Nature dries slowly in our changeable New England weather. I also tried an antique sheet-metal wet-heat corn dry­er designed for wood-stove-top use, but its single, rusty-hard­ware cloth tray left barbecue­-marks on the apple slices. Plus, it was too small to keep up with our kids' hearty appetite for dried delicacies. In the 1970s I gave in to progress and got one of the MacManniman's big yard-­square electric food dryers. But in time the plastic screen on the racks snagged and frayed, and the oversize box got creaky from being hauled from cellar to kitchen and back. Being of dark-stained ply­wood, it absorbs solar energy for sun-drying and works with stoveheat and electricity as well. Ready-Made Drying Racks Know those telescoping half-window screens? Materials Trimming the Screens The Base

Beef 101 Infographic suggests buying a whole side I wrote a post at the end of March about how you can lower meat costs by purchasing sides of beef. The infographic below is along the same lines, but contains more information about the health benefits of beef, and offers a simple breakdown of the different types of cuts you can buy at the grocery store, and some easy guides to shopping for beef. I find that guides like these can be really helpful for novice shoppers and seasoned pros alike when it comes to meat—I think it’s never a bad idea to reinforce best practices. Even better than that may be that in buying a side of beef, you’re more likely to purchase from local livestock farmers, which helps support your local economy. And when your food travels fewer fossil fuel miles, the environmental circumstances for fostering healthier meat production increases, resulting in better meat for you, which may in turn lead to lower health care costs down the line. Frugality is also factored in to transport. Traditionally, all cows fed on grass.

Scientific Concepts From 'This Will Make You Smarter' The year in small: A world tour of 13 tiny houses we loved in '13 From Maryland, pint-sized rustic retreats that are custom-built from recycled and locally-sourced materials and that “speak to the art of the small building movement." They're a little bit Thoreau, a little bit Tolkien, if you catch our drift. From Ontario, a traditional Canadian bunkhouse — the beloved "bunkie," if you will — that's been reimagined as an oversized piece of furniture. From Germany, a self-sustaining, single-occupancy shack designed by starchitect Renzo Piano and inspired by onion-eating Greek philosopher/proto-minimalist Diogenes. From Beijing, a super-compact modular dwelling inspired by the tetromino-based thrills of a certain iconic arcade game. From Mexico City, a petite prefab dwelling for resident artists that's tucked behind an eye-popping mural/billboard. From Spain, an unfussy and uncluttered hideaway that can easily go wherever you need it to go … provided that you have a flatbed truck, a crane, and a full day to assemble the entire thing.

Build a Wood Burning Stove ....................-- Build Your Own Wood burning Stove --..... Here is a wood burning stove you can build yourself and it works good. I heated my house in Wyoming (sole heat source other than solar) for years with this stove and now heat my house in Utah with it. I used a hot water tank and some flat sheets of steel and a big nut and some bolts to add some character to the door.. ............... I wanted a horizontal stove that I could also cook on if needed. The top left arrow is the chimney stack. It is thick enough that it hasn't ever warped and fits snug against the stove, since the handle assembly (arrow) and pulls it tight against the front of the stove.

Homemade "Vicks Vapor shower disks" Have you seen the commercials for the Vicks Vapor shower disk thingies? You put one of these disks in your shower, and voila thanks to the vapors in it, you're magically healed, your cold is gone, and your face is shockingly free of snot. I always used to watch the "Noxema girl" splashing water on her face and wondered how she was able to wash her face without being completely overrun with boogers. I'm the only one? Yes? Regardless, Vicks makes these things and I'm sure they're super expensive for something that is just going to wash down your drain. You know where I'm going with this, right? Yep. I made them myself. The idea started a few weeks ago when my sweet little nephew Parker came down with Croup for like the 1,438th time. And they couldn't be any simpler. Sarah's Homemade Vicks Shower Disk Thingies -Baking soda -Water -Essential oils: eucalyptus, rosemary, and lavender. 1) Add baking soda to a mixing bowl. 2) Slowly add water until you've made a thick paste.

About Off-Grid Off-Grid reports on the people, technologies, events and influences throughout the global off-grid community. The Landbuddy section helps you find others to go off-grid with and the free classifieds are full of ads for off the grid real estate. The Off-Grid101 section is packed with basic information from the right kind of solar cooker to how to gather rainwater. With daily news stories and a busy forum, is an indispensible part of daily routine for many off-gridders. The brainchild of author and campaigner Nick Rosen, the site now has 75,000 visitors a month, mainly from the US and UK, and continues to expand. is an eclectic mix of practical advice, news from the on-grid world and issues rarely covered by the mainstream media. We want to see large-scale off-grid developments in towns and in the countryside, so that the hundreds of thousands who would like to live this way are free to do so.

Step-by-Step Earthbag Building This Instructable explains each main step of construction for building vertical earthbag walls. Videos on my Earthbag Natural Building YouTube channel demonstrate the process. For those who don’t know, earthbag building uses polypropylene rice bags or feed bags filled with soil or insulation that are stacked like masonry and tamped flat. Barbed wire between courses keeps bags from slipping and adds tensile strength. The final plastered walls look just like adobe structures. Thousands of people are now building with bags to create their dream homes, home offices, shops, resorts, rootcellars, storm cellars and survival shelters. I got involved with earthbag building when the Indian Ocean tsunami hit Southeast Asia in December, 2004. Our websites at and Earthbag Building Blog explain just about everything you need to know for free.