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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Solar heat collector

Apparently the 3pm time was inconvenient for many people wanting to attend the solar heat collector workshop. I got many emails telling me to switch the time, so next time I know later is better. In any event, I built most of the solar heat collector in one day...and it looks great! Had to stop because I ran out of cans, so if you have a bunch of soda or beer cans (or would be willing to host a party to get some) let me know! Materials reused include an old storm window, empty cans and some odd pieces of wood lying around. Total cost will probably be about $20. If you're interested in getting directions for making your own or would like to reschedule a workshop...email buffalobasics@gmail.com

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Frozen pipes and frozen toes

It was in the negatives today with the windchill factor. Eek. I found myself shivering even with the battery powered self-heating socks and a few extra layers of long johns I threw on in the morning. Despite the cold cold cold weather though, inside the house the mood was warm and cheery! I smiled as I came through the door, hearing the sound of the gas heater going and hammers pounding. Several volunteers were busily working away, only stopping when I brought in my aunt's "very berry" pie and Micki brought in her award winning lasagna to share! We gobbled it up as though we were at Thanksgiving dinner and then got right back to work.

Working yesterday, Jason learned his fair share about drilling holes in 100 year old wood. Today Tex learned how to break out the rest of the corroded cast iron pipe/vent. More work is going on tomorrow and all week in fact (I'm working on building green innovations for my thesis, tiling the bathroom, etc), so if you'd like to learn...be sure to stop by!

Last bit of news: my pipes froze overnight...looks like I'll have to find a better method to keep them warm. Luckily, nothing exploding, so I didn't have water pouring in my basement...knock on wood! I'm working on finishing the insulation, so hopefully then it won't be a problem. In the meantime, I'm crossing my fingers and hoping it doesn't happen again. More updates to come, but if you're interested in green design/build, come to the workshop on the 13th at 3pm to learn all about offsetting your heating bills with DIY solar air collectors!