Author Topic: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas  (Read 3069 times)

morozow

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #25 on: December 01, 2021, 08:38:00 pm »
To make a primitive homemade oven is not so difficult. The main problem is the pipe for smoke and draft.
Sorry for the errors, rudeness and stupidity. It's not me, this online translator. Really convenient?

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #26 on: December 01, 2021, 11:52:03 pm »
If you pay for the postage, I will be happy to put some of our heat and humidity in a bag and send it to you. It's not winter here...

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #27 on: December 02, 2021, 03:16:31 am »
Besides heat, power for communication was s big issue for us during the last winter storm. I just realized that I have a relatively high output solar cell at my storage unit. Coupled with one of those cigarette lighter USB voltage adapters, it'd be trivial to power and charge a cell phone or tablet
« Last Edit: December 02, 2021, 03:18:21 am by J. Wilhelm »

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #28 on: January 20, 2022, 05:52:29 pm »
From the Zombie Apocalypse Survival Thread over in Spare Goggles January 10, 2022:

Professor Marvel had started a thread on Brassgoggles where he was describing sundry personal space heaters, that through the inspiration from Texas' Great Freeze and Power Blackout of 2021.  So for my first post I'll become the devil's advocate and state that most personal flower-pot heaters, just don't hold a candle to what I just purchased today:

Behold (cue Also sprach Zarathustra): a Propane gas space heater I found at half price!

This propane space heater will last for 5.5 hours on one standard 16 ounce cylinder. I can find camping cylinders for about$5 each at my supermarket.



Now to find a matching gas stove and solar cell for phone battery charger!

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #29 on: January 20, 2022, 09:48:31 pm »
Great Find J!

It is gratifying to see you have a heat source! I ran acroos this article, looks like Tejas is just waiting for the next
rerun of the last debacle:

" The Texas Electric Grid Failure Was a Warm-up
One year after the deadly blackout, officials have done little to prevent the next one—which could be far worse. "

https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-politics/texas-electric-grid-failure-warm-up


now you need to fetch your solar panel from storage and stock up on some lp cylinders.

one can always heat a (opened) can of food by placing it on a brick a few inches away from the heater.

as you probably already know, these little guys can be run for DAYS on a 20 pound BBQ tank.
the coverter hoses are available at the chinese knockoff stores ( dollar stores) or harbor freight.
one "used to" be able to cop a 20 lb bbq tank cheaply at flea markets...

well ,"used to be" at harbor freight, they are out of stock due to "supply and demand"
tractor supply has em https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/royal-gourmet-5-ft-propane-hose-adaptor-1-lb-portable-appliance-to-20-lb-lp-tank-converter-with-type-1-connection-ada1001?cm_vc=-10005

good luck!

and stock up on tinned food while its available!

yhs
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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #30 on: January 21, 2022, 02:54:14 am »
Great Find J!

It is gratifying to see you have a heat source! I ran acroos this article, looks like Tejas is just waiting for the next
rerun of the last debacle:

" The Texas Electric Grid Failure Was a Warm-up
One year after the deadly blackout, officials have done little to prevent the next one—which could be far worse. "

https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-politics/texas-electric-grid-failure-warm-up


now you need to fetch your solar panel from storage and stock up on some lp cylinders.

one can always heat a (opened) can of food by placing it on a brick a few inches away from the heater.

as you probably already know, these little guys can be run for DAYS on a 20 pound BBQ tank.
the coverter hoses are available at the chinese knockoff stores ( dollar stores) or harbor freight.
one "used to" be able to cop a 20 lb bbq tank cheaply at flea markets...

well ,"used to be" at harbor freight, they are out of stock due to "supply and demand"
tractor supply has em https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/royal-gourmet-5-ft-propane-hose-adaptor-1-lb-portable-appliance-to-20-lb-lp-tank-converter-with-type-1-connection-ada1001?cm_vc=-10005

good luck!

and stock up on tinned food while its available!

yhs
prof marvel

Too late for immediate use (tonight), I'm afraid, though the gas grill cylinder might be handy for the next storm this winter. I need to have my roommate help me exchange the grill cylinder - I can't carry that on the bus.The 20s (Fahrenheit) have arrived since last night, you see. We're having a slight wintery precipitation mix (black ice tomorrow if temps go over freezing). Paying close attention to ERCOT. Just in case they run into a China Syndrome situation, which probably they could.

The China Syndrome "Turbine Trip" scene with newly composed soundtrack by Philip DeWalt

I did buy 2 cylinders (16 Oz each) for $12 /pair + the cylinder attached to my blowtorch, and I could have bought more cylinders at REI next to the bus stop on 6th street at the gouging price of $10 each. But instead I just bought two blowtorch cylinders (14 Oz) at $5/piece at Lowe's. I simply ran out of time. The cold weather will last until Monday, perhaps.

I also bought a cheap two burner camping stove (Omigod they make them cheap nowadays) which can run on either type of cylinder


And yesterday night I bought this beauty:


Plus the necessary lamp oil to to with it.

Today I tested the heater. As expected,it puts out a prodigious amount of heat.


Very advanced,I might add, self-lighting, with gravity tilt and oxygen sensor safety valves (!), though sadly it doesn't have a thermostat.

I have fond memories of my grandfather's Sears natural gas heater we had next to an indoor pool in my childhood home. Yes we were a bit like the Addams family - everything about us was unusual. We hada a half size pool in a mid level room, with (yes why not?) a *second* indoor tree, and the roof was made from a long corrugated fiberglass sheet over wooden/concrete (?) beams. Being Mexico City, it'd get cold in Winter nights, and my grandfather had converted the pool shower room into a make shift office with a desk and a file cabinet, so he loved that gas heater.

Something like this (I can't find a photo of a Sears/ Kenmore heater from the 80s):


The choice of a gas heater near a pool instead of an electric one is an obvious choice)
« Last Edit: January 21, 2022, 03:33:56 am by J. Wilhelm »

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #31 on: January 21, 2022, 04:11:19 am »
Those little catalytic heaters are the way to go!
and $5 a pop at Lowes  for the cylinders is great  :D

the catalytic wall stoves like your Grandad's "use to be" the ubiquitous solution all over Tejas, New Mexico, AZ and FLorida.
still in use in many places here!

and in the "traditional"  Japanese homes it's all they have. everyone there seems to have LP bottled gas delivered in little cannister from 20pounds to 100 pounds. i am not sure if they even have piped natural gas?

yhs
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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #32 on: January 21, 2022, 11:00:23 am »
Paying close attention to ERCOT. Just in case they run into a China Syndrome situation, which probably they could.
You expect your power distributor to melt down and sink into the Earth? ???
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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #33 on: January 21, 2022, 11:49:56 pm »
Paying close attention to ERCOT. Just in case they run into a China Syndrome situation, which probably they could.
You expect your power distributor to melt down and sink into the Earth? ???

If you like I can offer some educational links.
The basic issue is this:
The Great and Indepandant Republic State of Texas literally is not connected to the rest of the
National power grid in a "meaningful" way.

They pioneered the concept of selling power and natural gas from one place to another to another , making scary profit each time, without ever adding value or physically moving, merely transforming ownership.
They have systems in place that automatically adjust price for maximum profit.

They do not spend funds for upkeap, maintenance, or winterize as that detracts from short term profit.
As a result last year Texas incurred the great state wide power outage for many weeks
And many users saw bills of over $10,000 per month!

And Texas saw it and said it was good.

And Texas has done nothing to keep it from happening again.

Money is not the root of all Evel.
The LOVE of money, and unbridled capitalism is.

Hope this helps
Prof not Happy

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #34 on: January 22, 2022, 12:01:38 am »
Just found this thread. I actually made a video on the terra cotta pot heater not too long ago (i.e. last week) when the winter weather was blowing through the southeast, as a "hey, most people have this laying around the house, if your power gets knocked out, this is a way to raise the temps in a room to 'you won't die.'"

As the concept's been posted many times over in the thread, no real need to add my own voice to the mix, particularly since it's a less than 60 second video (that's all my YouTube channel is, really), but it warms the cockles of my heart to see this type of talk going on. As someone who was ah, "residentially challenged" at one point, I've seen firsthand what the cold can do to a person, and by the gods, I don't ever want to see it again.
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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #35 on: January 22, 2022, 07:58:45 am »
Paying close attention to ERCOT. Just in case they run into a China Syndrome situation, which probably they could.
You expect your power distributor to melt down and sink into the Earth? ???

If you like I can offer some educational links.
The basic issue is this:
The Great and Indepandant Republic State of Texas literally is not connected to the rest of the
National power grid in a "meaningful" way.

They pioneered the concept of selling power and natural gas from one place to another to another , making scary profit each time, without ever adding value or physically moving, merely transforming ownership.
They have systems in place that automatically adjust price for maximum profit.

They do not spend funds for upkeap, maintenance, or winterize as that detracts from short term profit.
As a result last year Texas incurred the great state wide power outage for many weeks
And many users saw bills of over $10,000 per month!

And Texas saw it and said it was good.

And Texas has done nothing to keep it from happening again.

Money is not the root of all Evel.
The LOVE of money, and unbridled capitalism is.

Hope this helps
Prof not Happy
It's posts like this that make it increasingly hard to resist posting a link in this thread to Talking Heads' Burning Down the House.
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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #37 on: January 23, 2022, 08:38:42 am »
I celebrated too early. A couple of days ago, on it's third run the portable space heater had a malfunction. There's an igniter hidden under the main red valve knob on the top right of the heater.The piezoelectric stopped making"clicks", and there was no spark, which meant the piezoelectric igniter broke down. This is a mechanical design error. The knob pushes too hard on the piezoelectric device, easily breaking it after a few uses.

Not being able to return it on account of a lack of receipt, and the fact that any heating device has been flying off the shelves, I decided to fix it. And I made an educational find along the way. I'm sure those of you who have experience in gas appliance repair will probably laugh at me a bit, but in my defense, I know a bit about airplanes and rockets and not much about residential gas hardware.

The easiest route was to replace the piezoelectric spark generator, by using a lighter's igniter. Experiments showed that the spark was too weak. And I had another problem: I couldn't understand why there were two "electrodes" next to the pilot nozzle (which looks like a tiny torch. I understood that as long as one lead from the igniter was connected to ground (all of the metal plumbing and chassis) then you only needed one wire connected to a single needle embedded in a ceramic insulator. The spark would jump from that needle to the closest and sharpest metallic object near that electrode.

Having a second "ground" made no sense to me. I ended up going to the hardware store seeking a gas grill igniter. I was willing to try an electronic gas grill igniter, to install somewhere on the housing of the heater, but I ended buying a piezoelectric gas grill igniter, which basically looks like a long electric button switch. Easy to install and replace.

I almost cut the cable going to the"second electrode" when my mind kept telling me something was wrong. You see, the spark from the new igniter had a voltage large enough to jump between the nozzle of the pilot torch and the ceramic electrode (which clearly was connected to the piezoelectric igniter), *even if I didn't connect the ground lead to the igniter* at all! The black plastic to which igniter was mounted already was conductive enough at the voltage of the spark. So it made even less sense that youl'd need a "second electrode at all! It could not be an electrode!

Upon closer inspection, I saw a white wire go from the "second electrode" to a gravity tilt sensor, and then continue up towards the gas valve which has one tube feeding the pilot torch, and one tube feeding the main burner. It made even less sense to me. Was it an electric wire going *into* the mechanical gas valve?? It couldn't possibly be a ground wire. So it finally dawned on me that this single white wire connected to the valve actually feeds a small electric current to the valve. Interrupt that current and the valve shuts off the flow to both the main burner and pilot.

And it must be an electric current cut off, not a ground short circuit, for the action of the tilt gravity device is to interrupt the current in the wire.  That "second electrode" is not an electrode at all! It generates a small current from the heat of the pilot flame. If the pilot shuts off due to lack of oxygen, the all the flow of gas into the main burner tile is stopped as well as the pilot nozzle (the manual reads that it  has a special "calibrated ruby" device to limit the flow of oxygen such that if the oxygen level is low, the pilot flame is extinguished).

Similarly it's fairly obvious that this thermoelectric needle will respond the same way should the wind blow out the pilot flame. And lastly, the tilt gravity switch interrupts the same signal.

So this may be very common nowadays, and you can laugh at me now, but basically you have a solid state device in the shape of a needle creating a small current from the heat of the pilot flame to shut down a mechanical valve somewhere else. It's a bit wondrous to me. So having figured exactly where the spark needed to hit (the pilot nozzle), I reconnected the wire going to the gas valve, and only cut the single cable that comes from the original piezoelectric igniter toward the ceramic electrode assembly. I connected the wire to the new piezoelectric device and the ground wire was connected to the chassis of the heater. Assembled the whole unit, and it's working again.

To my amazement, the heater shut down when I tilted the heater, and when I blew out the pilot. And I almost bypassed those safety features!

*Images of a monolith flash and "Thus Spake Zarathustra" plays in the background. Simians create weapons out of bones and invent war*

So back on track again. Functionality restored save for the awkward igniter button sticking out from one side - in spite of my ignorance.




PS. Don't call me for your gas plumbing needs.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2022, 04:41:05 pm by J. Wilhelm »

Prof Marvel

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #38 on: January 23, 2022, 10:22:28 am »
Ah My Dear J

a simple fix if the piezo thing "breaks" again:

do the drill for lighting the thing
but hold a lit big fat kitchen match next to where the spark would be.

old school/ pre-piezo

yhs
prof marvel

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #39 on: January 23, 2022, 05:28:33 pm »
Ah My Dear J

a simple fix if the piezo thing "breaks" again:

do the drill for lighting the thing
but hold a lit big fat kitchen match next to where the spark would be.

old school/ pre-piezo

yhs
prof marvel

Would you believe I have not a single match in the house? Only gas lighters. It's a post-match and pre-piezo household.

In fact, "being too modern" was our Achilles Heel during the last winter storm. We lost power, and thus heat, because in spite of the furnace power being sourced from the street gas line, all of the ignition and thermostat functions are electric! We were freezing in spite of having the fuel on tap! It was the stupidest thing I've seen!

Don't get me started on illumination and communication; they were100% dependent on cell phone batteries which were quicky dwindling in charge and could not be recharged without the mains power restored. We could only source some wood for the fireplace, some candles, and diminutive (and completely useless) cans of sterno cooking fuel. I figured how to power a phone by using a 12 cigarette lighter power adapter for a cell phone and a 9V battery (13v to 5v power converter/voltage regulator chip).

Then I started thinking about all the household and even factory machines all over the world, and realized that many require two sources of power, if not three! One universal constant being electric mains. WTF? An electric outage also stops the usage of gas, not to mention stopping gasoline and diesel pumps. I'm used to seeing designs in vehicles like airplanes and automobiles, which once started are completely unreliant on a second source of power. Airplanes and cars both generate their own electricity, thus you're only using fuel as your source of power.

And RV's? Masters of survival. All is powered by fuel, propane and gasoline. 125 VAC generator on board means you have air conditioning and microwave. The gas operates the cooking oven/range plus the (yes) central furnace for cold locations (and a good one that was on our '81 Chevy/Southwind). Thermostat and ignition for said furnace? Water pump? From battery, which also is power converted from fuel.  Let's say the engine battery died. You can jump the two other batteries powering the RV to jump start the engine, and simultaneously start the gasoline powered generator to charge all batteries!

Why in the name of God would you design a device that absolutely needs two different external sources of power, thus doubling the probability of failure? Can't our household furnace produce it's own power to allow ignition and temperature regulation?
« Last Edit: January 23, 2022, 05:41:13 pm by J. Wilhelm »

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #40 on: January 23, 2022, 09:46:00 pm »
That is one of my beefs with modern appliances.

Old school furnaces used a pilot light. Very little fuel used. A thermocouple next to the pilot
Generates enough electricity to keep a shutdown valve open.

New ones with a piezo either require main connection, a battery, or a more complex thermocouple that
Generates more juice.

When an old thermocouple dies, it was a $1.95 at the little hardware store down the hill and about an hour of fussing.

When the new assembly dies (and it will) it's $50 to $75 and several hours for teardown install.

Worse: old thermocouples lasted 5 to 15 years
New cheap Chinese thermocouples burn out after 1-2 years. I keep half a dozen on hand....

And water heaters... The only time I had to replace a water heater before 2003 was when one got a hold it it!

Now, the damn things die after 5-7 years and the projected service life of the best is only 10 years.
I have coffee pots toasters older than that!

Prof Marvel

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #41 on: January 24, 2022, 04:46:24 am »
That is one of my beefs with modern appliances.

Old school furnaces used a pilot light. Very little fuel used. A thermocouple next to the pilot
Generates enough electricity to keep a shutdown valve open.

New ones with a piezo either require main connection, a battery, or a more complex thermocouple that
Generates more juice.

When an old thermocouple dies, it was a $1.95 at the little hardware store down the hill and about an hour of fussing.

When the new assembly dies (and it will) it's $50 to $75 and several hours for teardown install.

Worse: old thermocouples lasted 5 to 15 years
New cheap Chinese thermocouples burn out after 1-2 years. I keep half a dozen on hand....

And water heaters... The only time I had to replace a water heater before 2003 was when one got a hold it it!

Now, the damn things die after 5-7 years and the projected service life of the best is only 10 years.
I have coffee pots toasters older than that!

Prof Marvel

I had heard of thermocouples before, but never paid much attention to them. I guess if I had been a heat transfer major in undergrad school. I did study heat transfer in both undergraduate and graduate schools, but it was all under the umbrella of aerothermodynamics. In other words all theory and no practice. My practical experience involved working in flight dynamics and structural issues such as aeroelasticity (mechanical vibrations coupled with aerodynamicsl. And if of course, simulation of high speed and plasma flows. Never had a practical design class involving heat transfer, which would have required learning about temperature sensing devices, and thus I would've had to acquaint myself with the little devices. I knew them anecdotally from the use with voltmeters (sold as accessories) in my electronics hobby, but never had to build a device involving one, such as an electromechanical gas valve. My instinct would be to assume that the current generated by a thermocouple is too small to do anything with it, other than measuring it, which is why I'm surprised you can use it to operate valves.

I came so close to using one (one of many projects, I'm sure, but that would be learning from practice and not school. Live and learn. A clear demonstration of educational "holes" in a curriculum. If Fry's still existed in town (I'm not sure if they're still in business), I'd get a bunch and start experimenting. Maybe I need a thermostat  ;)


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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #42 on: January 24, 2022, 08:31:12 am »
The Chemical/physics magic of dissimilar metals!

old single stack thermocouples produce enough millivolts to hold a valve "open" against a light spring as a failsafe
for gas apliances.

multi-stack "thermopiles" can produce enough electricity from a candle flame to power some LEDS, or small fan, or even a low power radio!

Somewhere, someone built a thermopile that you bring camping and throw carefully place into your campfire.
It produces enough juice to charge up a cell phone...

but why did you bring your cell phone camping?

I would rather just talk to the mooses and the bears and the squirells
 
prf marvel

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #43 on: January 24, 2022, 02:08:28 pm »
The Chemical/physics magic of dissimilar metals!

old single stack thermocouples produce enough millivolts to hold a valve "open" against a light spring as a failsafe
for gas apliances.

multi-stack "thermopiles" can produce enough electricity from a candle flame to power some LEDS, or small fan, or even a low power radio!

Somewhere, someone built a thermopile that you bring camping and throw carefully place into your campfire.
It produces enough juice to charge up a cell phone...

but why did you bring your cell phone camping?

I would rather just talk to the mooses and the bears and the squirells
 
prf marvel

Well, for GPS, of course. I'm liking that campfire thermopile cell phone idea. The solar cell only works during daytime.

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #44 on: January 25, 2022, 07:16:28 am »
Well, for GPS, of course. I'm liking that campfire thermopile cell phone idea. The solar cell only works during daytime.

Oooohhhhh duuuuuuuuuude!

Go to big box Wally store
Get this


And this



And if needed, go here to learn how to use them
https://thedyrt.com/magazine/lifestyle/read-topographic-map/

And while you are in said store get the following

Hammer head tomahawk
Hickory handle camp axe
Condor Hudson Bay camp knife
Green River camp knife ( or equivalent Old Hickory)
Sharpening stone ( water, not oil)
Leather sheaths / holsters for each
Waterproof oiled Utility leather camping belt
Metal (not plastic) canteen
Nesting metal mess kit to fit canteen
Waterproof match safe
1000 diamond strike anywhere kitchen matches
Several hundred waterproof (preferably stormproof) strike anywhere matches
Quality raintarp/fly and para cord
Nice canvas and leather rucksack to put them in

While you are ther grab a case of ramen, a case of white and dark canned chicken meat, and a case of Sterno.
Sterno is for When it is so blasted wet... It will get damp wood started.
And a case of propane bottles.

Put it on my Amex Black card.

 ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D  :-*

Prof marvel
« Last Edit: January 25, 2022, 07:21:55 am by Prof Marvel »

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #45 on: January 25, 2022, 07:23:33 am »
Oh btw
Moose and squirrel say "hi j"

Prf jumbles

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #46 on: January 27, 2022, 12:35:33 am »
Oh btw
Moose and squirrel say "hi j"

Prf jumbles
No magnesium bar w/flint and parabolic mirror, just in case matches fail?

Black Amex card. Yes I've been paid in that before. Spending limit was (circa 2005) $99000 per charge. One payment had to be split in two (it was a down payment for a residential construction contract).

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #47 on: January 27, 2022, 01:41:15 am »
Oh btw
Moose and squirrel say "hi j"

Prf jumbles
No magnesium bar w/flint and parabolic mirror, just in case matches fail?

Black Amex card. Yes I've been paid in that before. Spending limit was (circa 2005) $99000 per charge. One payment had to be split in two (it was a down payment for a residential construction contract).

Black Amex ... Tongue in cheek! Closest I ever got is a reference to it on TV... I always wondered...

The mag bars , flint n steel, etc, are all dandy for eotwawki, but from experience I will loudly proclaim the merits of windproof matches and some sort of augmented tinder...

If TEOTW actually does come around I daresay there will be plenty of ways like a car battery and steel wool, whilst someone uses the crossbows and arbalests to hold off the Martians until we can sneek up and sneeze on them.

And axes! And cunning camp knives (as opposed to Rambo knives)
If nothing else, the old school high carbon old hickory butcher knives are da bomb!
And they have been making em the same since about 1800. Good stuff, lasts long time!
Those style have been in use by hunters campers, and frontiers persons since forever.
I still prefer high carbon over stainless, except for one certain stainless mix from Puma in Germany...

And good waterproof nylon tarps!

Moose and squirrel say howdy, no need for cellphone



Prf mumbles

Prof Marvel

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #48 on: January 27, 2022, 06:15:40 am »
Old Hickory!

7 inch butcher pattern is my fav



Followed by the 4 inch "green River" or "pig sticker" pattern



I used to make these with wood or anlterhandles, used to to be able to get the blade blanks in lengths from 3in all the way up to an 18  in butcher that looked like a machete.....   "Used to" ....

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Re: Its Winter! Alternative Emergency Heat Ideas
« Reply #49 on: January 28, 2022, 12:49:45 am »
I like the idea of being able to hook up my USB chargeable devices ti my gas heater. It's an avenue worth exploring. Like a minimalist, personal power station.

I remember more than a decade now, maybe two, the Army was looking at producing a gasoline powered microscopic silicon chip based electric generator, to fit inside laptops.