Author Topic: Off Grid Ideas  (Read 6644 times)

steedy

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Re: Off Grid Ideas
« Reply #30 on: May 21, 2015, 10:54:28 AM »
I don't know what it is.  Maybe you could send a sample to the Biology Department at your state university for identification.  It looks like a versatile plant though.  I thought you could make baskets out of it, or even fire starters, which would be a nice thing to have on hand.

ilinda

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Re: Off Grid Ideas
« Reply #31 on: May 21, 2015, 07:22:09 PM »
Finally I did get it ID'd after sending pics to a Native American friend.  He identified it immediately by saying it looks just like the stuff his uncle taught him how to harvest and use.

It's dogbane. 

steedy

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Re: Off Grid Ideas
« Reply #32 on: May 25, 2015, 03:16:52 PM »
I've never heard of that.  I'll have to look it up.

Socrates

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Re: Off Grid Ideas
« Reply #33 on: August 20, 2016, 11:37:39 PM »
A
We bought a Country Living grain mill and later discovered that their "stone" is not a genuine stone from nature, but manufactured from aluminum oxide.  Yikes.

It turns out acid rain kills plants because it leaches aluminum from the earth; there's always aluminum [it's one of the most abundant elements on the Earth] but under normal circumstances it is inert.
So it turns out you can actually cook using aluminum pots, just never have them come into contact with any acids or acidic food items.
In this sense your alumina stones would be fine as long as everything stays neutral. They're more like bricks cut from alumina-rich earth, the kind covering entire nations where people use them for building [think Timbuktu].

Anyway, i'm (again  :) ) very happy to learn from you, this time about the joys of working with sandstone. It's everywhere and even a piece of rock can be used to shape it. Hell, people have been digging out caves in sandstone since forever.
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ilinda

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Re: Off Grid Ideas
« Reply #34 on: August 21, 2016, 05:51:16 PM »
A
We bought a Country Living grain mill and later discovered that their "stone" is not a genuine stone from nature, but manufactured from aluminum oxide.  Yikes.

It turns out acid rain kills plants because it leaches aluminum from the earth; there's always aluminum [it's one of the most abundant elements on the Earth] but under normal circumstances it is inert.
So it turns out you can actually cook using aluminum pots, just never have them come into contact with any acids or acidic food items.
In this sense your alumina stones would be fine as long as everything stays neutral. They're more like bricks cut from alumina-rich earth, the kind covering entire nations where people use them for building [think Timbuktu].

Anyway, i'm (again  :) ) very happy to learn from you, this time about the joys of working with sandstone. It's everywhere and even a piece of rock can be used to shape it. Hell, people have been digging out caves in sandstone since forever.
Some might not mind cooking in aluminum, but for this old chick who uses tomatoes in many dishes, I prefer cast iron or clay/pottery cooking pots.   It makes sense (for me) to be able to grab any cooking pot and use it without having to ponder the pH of the food that goes in it.

Seems I remember reading that some of the ancients who ate bread made from flour ground on stone has some teeth problems due to bits, microscopic and larger, of stone that ended up in the flour.  So I wonder how much of the aluminum oxide "stone" of the grain mill  might end up in the flour, when then eventually ends up in the very acid stomach.  I don't have the answer to that.

Still if using a genuine sandstone grinding stone, one might have to be very careful to scrutinize the flour for stone bits.

ilinda

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Re: Off Grid Ideas
« Reply #35 on: August 21, 2016, 06:02:22 PM »
Cannot find the thread where we talked about stone axes, Larry Kinsella, etc., but here is the link to Larry Kinsella's website:
http://flintknapper.com

This guy is amazing.  I remember in one of his talks, he held up one of the stone axes he made and said he had cut down 3600 trees with that axe.