Life at the end of the road

December 3, 2019

Grey and miserable :-( at last :-)

Filed under: boats, daily doings, food, life off grid — Tags: , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 3:50 am

Two thirty in the morning and that’ll be the hot chocolate and banana ‘sleeping draft’ taken Smile

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Hopefully I’ll manage to get back to me bed for a few hours shortly, normally I wouldn’t bother even trying but I’m working tonight. The good ship Hallaig is having some work done overnight and ‘yours truly’ will be in attendance with a pan of venison chili Smile I had it last night for dinner and I gotta say it was probably the best I’ve ever made. I used real chunks of a stags hind leg instead of the normal mince then gave it a ‘kick’ with Sriracha and harissa instead of regular chili powder, finished off with the usual table spoon of organic cocoa it was boodly awesome. I was actually laid in bed at 2:00am thinking about eating some but settled for the Twinning’s Swiss drinking chocolate and an organic banana instead.

Normal weather

Anyways, as I’ve been saying, the weather this November has been exceptional with little rain, wind or sun. Well that changed yesterday, at least on the wind and rain front, sure there has been sun in November but even if it shines all day at this time of year my 8kW of solar PV struggles to generate more than 2 or 3 kWh. Even on the best of days at this latitude solar PV only generates 10% of what it does in May or June. Normally this would be offset by increased wind and water turbine energy, alas not this month. Having said that I’m far from complaining, it’s been great weather for the outdoors and whilst I’ve had to run the generator most days this month even that has only amounted to 52 hours, which isn’t much less than what I’d normally run in the whole year!

Well December’s second day gave Harry a rest, whilst it was thick and grey there was a good sprinkling of wind and rain, hardly gale force, or pishing down but the 12kW of wind and 2kW of hydro was more than enough to keep the house warm and ‘powered up’.

The first task of my leisurely approach to Monday was to go to Brochel and remove a couple of barrels of diesel of dubious heritage. They’d been stored outside with leaky caps and probably had water or worse inside them. The builders had asked me how they could dispose of them and I’d obliged figuring I’d be able to filter and separate enough of the stuff to make it worth my while.

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I took my Mate’s Kawasaki SX 4×4 Mule, A, cos it was muddy and slippy with limited turning space and I’d just washed the cars and B, cos it has a 500kg towing capacity and I didn’t believe it Smile

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Well, the little Mule lived up to its namesake and pulled the trailer and its cargo up ‘Calum’s Road’ no problem. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Calum_MacLeod_(of_Raasay)

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https://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/33158 better picture of plaque and that will be the Dunan Star fishing the underwater cliff in Brochel bay, which is a spectacular dive form around 18 to 40m.

Storing stuff in barrels

A lesson I learned many years ago on Scalpay, where all the fuel, be it petrol or diesel was brought onto the island in barrels.

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If possible store them upright in such a manner that water does not lie on top of them and enter either of the two caps, do this by setting them at an angle so it runs off. If you must store them on their side then do it with the caps at quarter past and quarter too, that way, if they do leak you will only loose half their contents Smile I’ve been moving full fuel and oil drums since 1985 and you would be surprised just how easy it is, it’s all down to technique and more often than not easier on your own, honest. I shifted these two full ones on my own with ease, it’s nay wonder I’ve suffered with a ‘bad back’ for years hey Smile

Power at last Smile

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100% fully charged batteries, 1200W from the wind turbine and 250W from one of the hydro turbines but these are all set to increase over the next few days with plenty wind and rain on the horizon. In view of this and having found a nice piece of Perspex left by the Polish builders I set about making a rear window for the Mule.

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Right, that’s it, almost 4:00am now, I’m gonna try and get some sleep Smile

3 Comments »

  1. How do you filter watery diesel? I use one of these, https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/MR-FUNNEL-RFF3C-FUEL-FILTER, they work well and simple.

    Comment by Kev — December 3, 2019 @ 9:24 am

    • Hi Kev,
      linky doesn’t work 😦 I just let the diesel settle in a clear IBC then drain the water off from the bottom, along with any sediment and diesel bug. For the Lister and dumper that’s clean enough but I wouldn’t be using it in anything ‘common rail’ without further filtration.

      Comment by lifeattheendoftheroad — December 3, 2019 @ 9:47 am

  2. 22mm of rain for November at the met office rain gauge at kishorn which we have been doing for over 40 years. Records go back another 40 the next driest was 97 mm with an average of 240mm
    . Long may it continue ?

    Comment by Steve patch — December 3, 2019 @ 2:17 pm


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