This project goes over the detail on how you can take an old 55 gallon plastic drum and turn that into a hand crank washing machine and a compost tumbler.
The frameworks has uprights on the edges, holding up the barrel all the way down. The upright on the sides are 3 foot long 2 x 4. The base that it sits is 3 foot 2 X 4.Long brace that holds the two sides together is three foot eight inches long. You can take apart the whole framework by unscrewing the side rails and store the barrel for using them in an emergency situation.
The barrel sits on a one inch hardwood dowel which is installed through one inch hole at the top of the upright. These barrels have a line in the middle of them so it is pretty easy to find the center by measuring across the line and then dividing it in half.
The hand crank is made of PVC pipe with some screws to the end side of the barrel. The hand crank gives you something to grab onto if it gets very heavy so you can pull it back up and really move it around.
It has a one foot by one foot door on the front .We use couple of cheap cabinet hinges to hold the door up when unloading the clothes. It also has a little S hook latch that locks it into place.
A hole down in the middle of the barrel is for drainage. A small plug and a cap acts as a drain. The plug is put through the hole from inside and sealed with the help of PVC glue.
Next step is to add agitators to our barrel . As you rotate the barrel, the clothes will roll over those agitators back and forth and get the clothes moving a lot better and help clean it. We add 3 PVC pipes inside the barrel that act as the agitators.
You put clothes in through the top and add enough water just to cover the clothes, add any biodegradable liquid detergent and close the lid. Start moving the hand crank back and forth. This will agitate the clothes. The agitators slosh those clothes around, get them grinding against each other and that is going to clean all the dirt out of them.
After about 15 minutes of agitation, we pull the drainage plug off the bottom and drain the water or recycle it by collecting them underneath a bucket and pour it around your plants and trees. As long as we are using biodegradable soap/detergent, the soap and the dirt that is in your clothes isn’t going to hurt the plants.
We put the plug back on, and fill the barrel with some clean water and agitate for another 15 minutes. This is the rinse cycle. Pull the plug, drain that water or use it on your plants.
This setup can be also used a tumbling composter. Compost can be made of just about anything that was once alive .You can use leaves, grass clippings, garden waste, kitchen waste, chicken manure or any other waste material. Just dump all in there and turn the compost in there using our handle every couple of days for 2 weeks.
We want to keep the compost aerated so that the microbes and bacteria that break down the compost can utilize the oxygen efficiently and help in decomposition. After 2 to 3 weeks, you probably have some pretty decent compost that you can use on your garden. Also through the drain hole, we can collect the residue compost tea which is high in nutrients. You can use that compost tea for plants that really need a good dose of nitrogen.
- How to build a Powerful DIY Off-Grid Emergency Backup Generator .Fully Portable!!This project goes into the build of a portable and powerful off grid emergency solar generator with higher capacity than commercial units at a fraction of the cost. This system can keep a small fridge operating 24/7, charge your devices, power TV ,LED lights, Laptops. it is small enough to be stored away in your garage and portable enough to move where it was needed. The main components used to build this generator are as follows. 4 Renogy 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panel Renogy Rover 40 Amp MPPT Solar Charge Controller Renogy Deep Cycle AGM Battery 12 Volt 100Ah Sug 2000W(Peak 4000W) Power Inverter Pure Sine Wave DC 12V to AC Renogy 20 Feet 10AWG Solar Extension Cable with MC4 Female and Male BLACK+DECKER BM3B 6V and 12V Automatic Battery Charger / Maintainer 6 Circuit Fuse Block W/Negative Bus Milwaukee Hand Truck with handle Control Panel with USB Charger,LED Voltmeter,12V Power Outlet, ON-OF Switch. To create a solar system that can truly meet your needs and cope with the variability of your environment, you really need to do some planning. This will help you avoid building a system that isn't up to the job and can save you considerable money by preventing the expense of replacing components later on. To calculate the number of batteries and solar panels you will need to create a system to provide power in all seasons through inclement weather and at your particular latitude, you need to determine the devices you intend to power, log their power consumption across a few days using a power meter. Then find the reserve days . This is how many non sunny days the system can tolerate while still powering your devices. Also find the recovery time by calculating how many days of sun that will be needed to fully recover when the batteries have run down due to lack of sun. You also need to know the usable charging hours in day and the actual battery round trip efficiency since batteries give back something less than the amount of power used to charge them. Here we use 4 100 Watt 12 Volt Monocrystalline Solar Panels to charge our 12 Volt Deep Cycle Battery. The panels are wired in series so that the voltages add together and you can get up to 80 volts from four panels. With this system there is enough voltage to begin charging as soon as there is any daylight at all. It also charges the batteries right up until dusk. Another advantage of the series wiring is that it is much better for long wire runs when the solar panels are not close to the generator and you can use less expensive smaller wire gauges for the solar panel runs. To use panels in series you must have an MPPT type charge controller. They are specially designed to accommodate the high voltage of panels wired in series up to the particular controllers voltage limit .MPPT controllers are much more efficient converting nearly all the energy coming from the panels into charging power for the battery. A 2000 watt pure sine wave inverter is used that can provide up to 4000 watts of surge power, and with enough battery support can run any conceivable device including those with motors. To store energy we use a 2 12V AGM marine batteries . These give plenty of reserved capacity that will last with reasonable care . They don't leak and can tolerate cheaper discharges and have very good round trip efficiency. Four 100 watt solar panels are connected through the 40 amp MPPT charge controller . The panels can deliver up to 2400 watts of solar power in the shortest days of winter. And the charge controller converts solar power to charging power very efficiently and also support serial panel configurations increasing the systems capability. A heavy duty hand truck is used for loading all the components . A frame made of angle iron is welded on to the platform to mount the batteries. Two angled straps are welded across the truck to provide more support for the battery frame. The various components are mounted on a back support made of five eighth inch plywood. I use a tapered punch to make starter holes for all the screws that hold the components. The hand cart is laid on its back and the plywood board is aligned in such a way it doesn't block the holes. While the cart was on its back I screw down all the components with stainless steel screws. For the project we use a thinner 18 gauge wire for the low current circuits, medium 14 gauge for the 12 volt port and heavy 10 gauge for the high current charging circuits. Red is always connected to the plus or positive connectors, black always to the minus or negative. The positives and the negative connection coming from the solar panels are connected to the solar charge controller with the help of a quick disconnect Wire Harness SAE Connector. The negative of the solar charge controller is directly connected to the negative connection of the battery while the positive goes through a fuse block before connecting the positive of the battery. The negative connections from switch, voltage display ,USB ports and battery charge meter is connected via a medium 14 gauge wire to the battery negative. The positives are connected to the battery through the fuse block. The 12 volt port is on its own fuse so it gets separate wires in the medium 14 gauge. The positive of the 12V Battery Charger is connected to the fuse while the negative is connected to the battery. The batteries are placed on platform of the cart facing opposite directions so that positive and the negative terminals are near the plywood backboard where the components are attached. The battery connection cables are cross connected to create a parallel 12 volt configuration careful to ensure the block cable connected only to minus terminals at both ends and the red cable connected only to plus terminals at both ends. Next step is the orientation of the solar panels. As you probably know the sun is lower in the sky in the winter higher in the summer. In the winter, the days are also shorter as you really want to optimize for winter to get as much energy as you can when the days are short. Since my panels are fixed, we want to point them due south and angle them for the winter sun. There are tables you can find online that can give you a pretty good idea of the right vertical angle for your geographical location. In the summer the sun is pretty much straight overhead, so the panels are optimal when laying flat. The angle panels are their most productive in the depth of the winter losing a little each day until the height of the summer as the sun is further off the winter angle. Meanwhile, the flat panels are less efficient in the winter because the sun is at a low angle but gaining each day as the sun gets higher in the sky. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QZYAAatdlmc
- How to build a Simple Backyard Bio Sand Water Filtration System from easily available materials .This project goes over the build of an emergency cheap bio sand water filtration system. This can filter out your polluted water from your stream or lake or gutter. Bio sand filters are good for filtering parasites, bacteria, protozoa virus and fine sediments from well water. These work by doing four stages of purification. First is the biological zone where bacteria eats your parasites and pathogens viruses. That happens on the surface of the bio zone. The second is mechanical trapping where sediment can be attracted to porous rock, and it will filter out sediment absorption, third one is absorption where the electrostatic charge which will attract small particles and viruses down to virus level and get attracted to this sand and last stage is natural death from nutrient depletion when there won't be anything for bacteria or virus to eat or thrive on when they start to go through the sand dairy of the filter. There is two five gallon buckets, one stacked on top of the other. These are black food storage buckets. These buckets don't tend to promote the growth of algae as much as the opaque buckets do. The top bucket is the water storage bucket, the top one is the filter. There is an eighth inch hole on the lid at the top bucket that allows water to flow freely without creating a vacuum. There is a 16th of an inch hole at the bottom of the bucket that slowly let the water drip out onto the top of the next bucket. The bottom bucket has 8 one quarter inch holes along the sides. This allows the water to disperse over the top ,they drip down to the these holes along the side of the bucket such that they dont disturb the biozone underneath. It'll take about three weeks to establish a bio zone. And during that three week period, you're going to have to continually feed some polluted water in there with bacteria in it to feed the bio zone to make it develop and grow. It would put a large circular ring in the center of your bio filter and distribute the bacteria off to the side. Now this filter relies upon bacteria that forms on the top of the sand to eat the other bacteria like Giardia and Cryptosporidium. A pipe at the center will prevent the sand from coming up into the faucet and getting into the drinking water. We here have two layers of sand. The bio zone is going to have a couple inches of fine sand on it to promote the growth of the bacteria. The course sand underneath will filter out sediment and other bacteria. Bottom layer is an inch of fine and pea gravel. The second stage of this filter starts with the build of a 4 way distribution pipe made of PVC pipes and a four way coupler. We cut holes in these pipe ,one towards the end and the other towards the center. This will distribute the water over the top of the bucket and so that the water isn't just going in in one spot and trickling down one side or down the center and not evenly distributing it over the top of the sand Drill a hole at the bottom of the 2nd bucket and put a quarter inch brass drain plug .This can be used to drain water out the barrels if I want to store them or to flush them out. We put put 3 levels of gravel and 3 levels of sand in the second stage. Put two to three inches of each layer of gravel. Add an inch of activated carbon on top of this fine gravel. Treat both the filter with chlorinated water and fresh water and let it sit for few minutes. Stack the second stage filter on top of the first stage. Make sure the whole setup is tightly sealed. Further purify the water by letting it sit under the sun. The ultraviolet ray purify the remaining bacteria that might be in there. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6bqYI1Z68jM
- DIY Video : How to dig your own shallow water well for the gardenThis project goes over the instructions on how you can dig your own shallow hand pump water well using simple tools and save a lot of money. Before digging the water well, you need to know the ground. You got to have the right soil for this system to work. If your soil type is silt, clay, sand or loam, then its ideal .In our case, we have the first 10 or 12 feet of fine glacial silt and below that there is glacial deposits of river gravel. The first step is to dig a hole for the well casing. The tools you need to dig the hole are six inch post hole auger , three quarter inch extension pipe with coupling at the end and couple of wrenches. Once you have spotted the area where you want to dig the well, you start by applying downward pressure on the auger by twisting it. It screws itself into the earth filling its basket with material. When it's full, you pick it up and dump it aside or in a wheel barrel. Sharpening the auger can help it cut through tree roots but it will not stay sharp long. It is important to do your best to keep the hole centered. Once the bottom is reached, we pull out the auger and remove the basket from the handle and insert one of the extension using the pipe wrench. The next part is getting the casing down the hole. For the casing we are using a cheap and readily available six inch PVC sewer pipe. We use a rasp to smoothen the end of the pipe so that it fits a cap . A round piece of PVC flat stock is bolted and glued on top of the cap using a PVC glue. This becomes the mounting base for the pitcher pump. To get started with driving the well point, we need a long piece of 10 foot pipe and a sandpoint, a couple of drive couplings. The drive couplings are steel rather than cast which makes them stronger. But most importantly, they have that small diameter so that they can slip down inside, making them not much larger than the diameter of the sand point itself. The sandpoint is made of perforated stainless steel and a cast iron point at the bottom. We connect the sandpoint and 10 foot pipes using the couplers and some Teflon tape. Now you don't want to hammer on your drive point or any of your fittings without them being quite tight because you need those extra threads to spread the load. We drive the whole thing with a homemade post hole pounder which is a gooseneck trailer hitch ball welded into a piece of pipe. We insert the sandpoint with the extension into the well casing and start drilling by hand. We are gonna find out how far down that water is by dropping a string with a bolt tied to it to the very bottom. We finally attach a black ABS suction by sliding it down into our pipe .Then we cover the pipe with our PVC casing . And once the casing has been firmly tamped down, we will pack around the casing and tap that into place. The final step is to install the pitcher pump and prime it by add some water. The top cap is installed on the casing opening and the pump is bolted to the top of the cap. Priming the pump simply entails pouring a little water in that top basin. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9mG4j4I13y4 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6p5ked9gKuQ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=334mj68JU0I