EnviroLink Forum

Community • Ecology • Connection
It is currently Mon Jan 21, 2019 6:22 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 210 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 10, 11, 12, 13, 14  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:37 pm 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... he may try breeding ducks as well, which is another new addition ...

Why does he prefer ducks over chickens?


More likely ducks in addition to chickens. The chickens were only suspended during the house building process because of the lack of time and energy left for anything other than his dog ...and his wife.


Quote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
The land is not as large as the farm I bought in the adjoining state ...

What is your opinion, how much space is needed for self-support in your region? Where is the "line" that differ the farm game from the real work?


Even here there are variations dues to terrain and climate. I grew up in the mountains where more land was needed because of the limitations of use for so much of it. Here in the piedmont there are several sustainable business farms in the 5-10 acre range. Some grow flowers, some grow trees, some raise goats and produce cheese, some raise hogs, and many diversify into two or more activities. Some also supplement their income with "party barns" for weddings and parties. The cattle operations are usually much larger and sell their meat locally.

Quote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... since he is not planning on growing trees commercially now that he has gotten into blacksmithing ...

Did he want to grow trees for lumber?


No, although I did timber the farm after he decided not to continue with his plans. He was going to raise Japanese maples, which can be lucrative but takes years to build up the base like Christmas tree farms farther west of us.

Quote:
My first job after the institute was at the plant in the heat treatment hall. Most of the machine parts were from the forge. Two years later i moved to the machine shop and worked as a programmer of CNC machines. I respect people who work with their hands. Sometimes i watch YouTube, and I'm happy when i watch channels like “luckygen1001” or “MyFordBoy”.


Decades ago I would have been happy to buy a farm and just live there, but as I have grown older the strain of doing so makes it less popular. My grandparents farm on which they lived was my guide. They had everything they would need other than salt and sugar, but could easily had grown sorghum as there were mills in the area. Even at that my grandfather was a coal miner first and a farmer second, as was the case in that area at the time. My grandfather had a blacksmith shop that I really wanted to move after he passed away but the other relatives were against it. Later when my cousin bought part the property including the house he removed all of those tools and the forge. When my older son started showing an interest and was taking courses in blacksmithing I tried to find my grandfather's equipment to no avail. As a result he had to buy is own equipment, but moved it into the building I owned and in which I operated my business.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 4:09 pm 
Offline
New User
New User

Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:23 am
Posts: 30
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... but could easily had grown sorghum ...

Do you use mechanical tools like a tractor?

A few years earlier i had read an article about turning sorghum into alcohol. I thought: can an alcohol-powered tractor be self-sufficient? Or the energy of the fuel from a specific area will not be enough to work above this area.

Wayne Stollings wrote:
... Even at that my grandfather was a coal miner first and a farmer second ...

Did i understand correctly, relying only on agriculture is a bad idea?

Wayne Stollings wrote:
... As a result he had to buy is own equipment, but moved it into the building I owned and in which I operated my business.

May i ask you about his equipment? Does he use only hand tools or bought a mechanical hammer?

How do you solve the water support problem?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:29 pm 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... but could easily had grown sorghum ...

Do you use mechanical tools like a tractor?


Yes, they did. Tractor, sickle mower, rake, hay baler, manure spreader and here was a dedicated flat bed stake body truck for hauling livestock to market too.

Quote:
A few years earlier i had read an article about turning sorghum into alcohol. I thought: can an alcohol-powered tractor be self-sufficient? Or the energy of the fuel from a specific area will not be enough to work above this area.


We raised field or dent corn which was usually ground for corn meal, but could easily be converted into methanol. I looked into the conversion of the automobile engines back in the 1970s when we had the oil crisis.

Quote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... Even at that my grandfather was a coal miner first and a farmer second ...

Did i understand correctly, relying only on agriculture is a bad idea?


It can be. One bad year and you can be set back for years. For example the house I lived in was where my grandmother was born. There was a peach orchard for as long as I could remember but only fruit one year because of the frosts killing the bloom. That is an extreme case but there are a lot of weather impacts on farming. Too much rain, too little rain, rain at the wrong time, too cold, too hot, or even a boom year for everyone that drive prices down due to over supply.

Quote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... As a result he had to buy is own equipment, but moved it into the building I owned and in which I operated my business.

May i ask you about his equipment? Does he use only hand tools or bought a mechanical hammer?


Right now mostly hand tools. One propane forge and one coal forge he just built. No power hammers but he would like one.

Quote:
How do you solve the water support problem?


Water support? His shop in my building has municipal water for the supply.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:02 am 
Offline
New User
New User

Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:23 am
Posts: 30
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... I looked into the conversion of the automobile engines back in the 1970s when we had the oil crisis.

Many years ago I had a hobby of making RC aircraft models. These models have a small motor that uses methanol. I think it's possible to make the motor bigger. But methanol is poison, ethanol is better, but I didn’t study combustion well. The main question is: can fuel collection be more consumption? For example, if we burn one gallon of fuel to plow one acre, and then collect less than one gallon of fuel per crop on this acre, it will not be self-sufficient.

Wayne Stollings wrote:
Water support? ...

I mean using water to irrigate your fields. This is a frequent problem in my country, because the river can be very far away. And we have some legal restrictions, for example, on digging wells. I wonder how the water issue is solved in other places.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 8:16 am 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... I looked into the conversion of the automobile engines back in the 1970s when we had the oil crisis.

Many years ago I had a hobby of making RC aircraft models. These models have a small motor that uses methanol. I think it's possible to make the motor bigger. But methanol is poison, ethanol is better, but I didn’t study combustion well. The main question is: can fuel collection be more consumption? For example, if we burn one gallon of fuel to plow one acre, and then collect less than one gallon of fuel per crop on this acre, it will not be self-sufficient.


True. The US adds ethanol to gasoline on a regular basis now so it would seem to be a positive energy exchange, but I have not looked into it for years. For some reason, the methanol was a better fit at the time, but that was back when they used leaded gas because it helped lubricate. Even now too much ethanol will cause engine problems unless the seals are replaced and some other modifications made.

Quote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
Water support? ...

I mean using water to irrigate your fields. This is a frequent problem in my country, because the river can be very far away. And we have some legal restrictions, for example, on digging wells. I wonder how the water issue is solved in other places.


There are no such restrictions on wells here, but there should be due to commercial agriculture depleting the aquifers. We had no irrigation systems on the small farms as it was not cost effective at the time. The greenhouse was water from a well when it was first installed at the other farm, but in the new farm it will take surface water retained in the pond. There are now restrictions on building ponds, but this one was built decades ago and is "Grandfathered" in. Should he have to do significant modifications he would then have to go through all of the current processes.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 10:09 am 
Offline
New User
New User

Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:23 am
Posts: 30
Wayne Stollings wrote:
The US adds ethanol to gasoline on a regular basis now so it would seem to be a positive energy exchange, but I have not looked into it for years ...

We don't have the practice of adding ethanol to gasoline, but at our gas stations you can buy propane for your car. Eight years ago, I bought a car with equipment for using propane, this equipment was installed by the previous owner. What can I say, sometimes it helped, but if you compare it by price, it's almost equivalent to using gasoline. Propane is also produced from fossil fuels. In winter, a big problem is to start the engine on propane, it's better to use gasoline to start.

Wayne Stollings wrote:
... Even now too much ethanol will cause engine problems unless the seals are replaced and some other modifications made.

The engine must be designed to use ethanol. What do you know about other renewable fuels?

I really want to hear a story about how you chose your tractor and its equipment.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:41 pm 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
The US adds ethanol to gasoline on a regular basis now so it would seem to be a positive energy exchange, but I have not looked into it for years ...

We don't have the practice of adding ethanol to gasoline, but at our gas stations you can buy propane for your car. Eight years ago, I bought a car with equipment for using propane, this equipment was installed by the previous owner. What can I say, sometimes it helped, but if you compare it by price, it's almost equivalent to using gasoline. Propane is also produced from fossil fuels. In winter, a big problem is to start the engine on propane, it's better to use gasoline to start.


I seem to see more LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas or methane) vehicles now than propane, but hybrid and electric are the most common.

Quote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... Even now too much ethanol will cause engine problems unless the seals are replaced and some other modifications made.

The engine must be designed to use ethanol. What do you know about other renewable fuels?


The seals can be changed to work with the ethanol, which is one of the bigger problems, I am told. The heads may need to be redesigned since the ethanol burns hotter than gasoline. This was one of the conversion requirements I remember from the conversion to methanol too. The modern cars with the computer injection may be able to mitigate some of the issue, but of that I am not sure. My pick up is a capable of running on pure gasoline and as much as a 85% mixture of ethanol, which I assume is due to the type of seals and the computer controls. The military has multi-fuel capable engines which will run on any suitably combustible liquid, so I know it is at least possible in theory but the cost is unknown.

Quote:
I really want to hear a story about how you chose your tractor and its equipment.


I did not choose. The equipment was purchased over the years by my grandfather. The original tractor and sicklebar were destroyed in a roll over accident and replaced in 1947, the truck was replaced in 1950, and I know both were overhauled once and new a new engine in the truck once through to about 1990. My uncle lived on an adjacent farm and he used his tractor and equipment from that point until they stopped really farming the plots.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 11:41 am 
Offline
New User
New User

Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:23 am
Posts: 30
Wayne Stollings wrote:
I seem to see more LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas or methane) vehicles now than propane, but hybrid and electric are the most common.

What do you think, which chain is more efficient today: sun -> vegetation -> fuel -> burning -> work or sun -> solar batteries -> chemical accumulator -> electric drive -> work?

I sometimes think of a different chain: if I will saving resources. -> Some people will breed because something remains. -> New people will eat everything that I saved. -> In this way, it only seems to me that I am saving something.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 12:32 pm 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
I seem to see more LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas or methane) vehicles now than propane, but hybrid and electric are the most common.

What do you think, which chain is more efficient today: sun -> vegetation -> fuel -> burning -> work or sun -> solar batteries -> chemical accumulator -> electric drive -> work?

I sometimes think of a different chain: if I will saving resources. -> Some people will breed because something remains. -> New people will eat everything that I saved. -> In this way, it only seems to me that I am saving something.


There are many variables other than just efficiency, such as application and limitations of use. Liquid fuels are more usable in the broad spectrum of uses since electrical storage is heavier and more bulky. There is also the ease in conversion from the current liquid fuels to the newer liquid fuels.

A few years ago I met with some representatives of a Chinese company who were trying to market a rare earth system to store and purify hydrogen for laboratory applications. One of the things I though would have been really good for that system was to store hydrogen for IC engines. It maintained a constant out gas pressure and was lighter than the deep cycle batteries so it could be used in any application as an IC engine from automobiles and trucks to lawn mowers and all with only H2O as emissions. The fuel stations could use solar to produce H2 and store it to dispense into the portable fuel cells later. In a pinch they could use grid power too. Other than the potential limitations of the rare earths involved it seemed like a really novel approach. I do not know how it turned out as my contact left for another company.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 1:45 pm 
Offline
New User
New User

Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:23 am
Posts: 30
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... One of the things I though would have been really good for that system was to store hydrogen for IC engines. It maintained a constant out gas pressure and was lighter than the deep cycle batteries so it could be used in any application as an IC engine from automobiles and trucks to lawn mowers and all with only H2O as emissions ...

I list what I heard before:
Sunlight energy -> Solar panel -> Electric energy - 15 - 25%
Electric energy -> Electrolysis -> (H2 + O2) mix - 30 - 40%
(H2 + O2) mix -> IC engine -> Mechanical energy - 30 - 40%
Total approximately: 1 - 4%

Hydrogen is difficult to store, and it leaves the atmosphere of the Earth in a free state, because it is very light and has a small atomic diameter.

Is it right?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 2:31 pm 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... One of the things I though would have been really good for that system was to store hydrogen for IC engines. It maintained a constant out gas pressure and was lighter than the deep cycle batteries so it could be used in any application as an IC engine from automobiles and trucks to lawn mowers and all with only H2O as emissions ...

I list what I heard before:
Sunlight energy -> Solar panel -> Electric energy - 15 - 25%
Electric energy -> Electrolysis -> (H2 + O2) mix - 30 - 40%
(H2 + O2) mix -> IC engine -> Mechanical energy - 30 - 40%
Total approximately: 1 - 4%

Hydrogen is difficult to store, and it leaves the atmosphere of the Earth in a free state, because it is very light and has a small atomic diameter.

Is it right?


I do not think hydrogen is that hard to store as we use it daily here in the lab as a clean fuel source for our Flame Ionization Detectors. No more so than any other gas based fuel, anyway. Hydrogen is a small molecule and it can escape the atmosphere, but there is some retained.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 3:13 pm 
Offline
New User
New User

Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:23 am
Posts: 30
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... No more so than any other gas based fuel, anyway ...

I read that steel and some other materials must have thick walls to prevent hydrogen leakage and have strength to withstand high pressure. I have not heard of liquefied hydrogen. What do you know about carbon fiber balloons? I think that it has wider spaces in the structure, and metal baloons for hydrogen will be better. I also heard that some scientists wanted to use some metals, such as titanium, to dissolve hydrogen in their structure for storage without pressure.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 3:38 pm 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... No more so than any other gas based fuel, anyway ...

I read that steel and some other materials must have thick walls to prevent hydrogen leakage and have strength to withstand high pressure. I have not heard of liquefied hydrogen. What do you know about carbon fiber balloons? I think that it has wider spaces in the structure, and metal baloons for hydrogen will be better. I also heard that some scientists wanted to use some metals, such as titanium, to dissolve hydrogen in their structure for storage without pressure.


The same cylinders we use for storage of H2 are used for every other type of gas from methane, N2, CO2, to O2 and acetylene, which do have some special handling due to the possible ignition issues. The rare earths I mentioned earlier would hold H2 in the structure at relatively low pressures and release is at those pressures as well. I do not remember the exact specs but the release pressure was constant throughout most of the curve.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 4:12 pm 
Offline
New User
New User

Joined: Mon Dec 31, 2018 9:23 am
Posts: 30
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... The rare earths I mentioned earlier would hold H2 in the structure at relatively low pressures and release is at those pressures as well. I do not remember the exact specs but the release pressure was constant throughout most of the curve.

I just read that liquefied hydrogen also exists, but they write that it has a density of only 0.07 kg per liter. This means that in order to replace energy for 1 liter of gasoline, I would need 3.5 liters of liquefied hydrogen.

The main question is how much hydrogen can be stored in rare earths by weight? And what is the cost of this type of accumulator?

I agree that liquid fuel is better, and independence from high-tech companies is better. I ask myself whether farming methods can compete, for example, with solar panels?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Over-herd
PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 5:05 pm 
Offline
EnviroLink Volunteer
EnviroLink Volunteer
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 26, 2003 10:45 pm
Posts: 21313
Location: Southeastern US
solidum wrote:
Wayne Stollings wrote:
... The rare earths I mentioned earlier would hold H2 in the structure at relatively low pressures and release is at those pressures as well. I do not remember the exact specs but the release pressure was constant throughout most of the curve.

I just read that liquefied hydrogen also exists, but they write that it has a density of only 0.07 kg per liter. This means that in order to replace energy for 1 liter of gasoline, I would need 3.5 liters of liquefied hydrogen.

The main question is how much hydrogen can be stored in rare earths by weight? And what is the cost of this type of accumulator?


It has been so long that I do not remember the specifications or the costs of the ones we discussed. One of our suppliers does list 5 versions of the material with pricing in USD.

https://www.sigmaaldrich.com/materials- ... e=19920387

Quote:
I agree that liquid fuel is better, and independence from high-tech companies is better. I ask myself whether farming methods can compete, for example, with solar panels?


It really depends upon whether there is an ongoing cost or not. If the efficiency is not that good but the results are acceptable for the cost or there is no cost then it does not matter. It may be more efficient to buy a product than to "work around" without such a purchase, but if you have the time and effort to invest instead of money it may be the better choice. That is why manual labor can be better than mechanization on a farm.

_________________
With friends like Guido, you will not have enemies for long.

“Intellect is invisible to the man who has none”
Arthur Schopenhauer


"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
Albert Einstein


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 210 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1 ... 10, 11, 12, 13, 14  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Bing [Bot], Google [Bot] and 44 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group