Life at the end of the road

March 25, 2019

Let there be more light :-)

Filed under: animals, daily doings, food, Trucks and plant — Tags: , , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 7:40 am

6:00am here at sunny Arnish, OK, not quite sunny yet but it does look promising without the threat of Sunday’s frequent showers, some of which were hail. It was boodly Baltic in the bitingly cold west, then north west wind, so boodly cold and threatening that ‘wee dug’ refused to come out ‘walkies’ with Leah and I.


Our old croft was looking well cared for and the hawthorn weeks ahead of previous years, though I suspect like much of the vegetation it’s currently ‘stalled’ with the dramatic fall in temperature. The balmy double figures of February a distant memory Sad smile 

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Fond as we were of the happy home of a quarter of a century I do prefer the modern, light, draught free, warmth of Sonas to ‘Number 3’ and I miss the constant feeding of the ‘Squirrels’ (Morso woodburners) not a single jot Smile Sure my neighbours take good care of the house and croft and you can book yourself a piece of the ‘off grid’ lifestyle complete with TV, Internet and all ‘mod cons’ here Nikky will probably even let you feed Judy and Tilly the two ‘Iron Age’ pigs Smile

Another fabulous lunch

After taking Leah for a walk around Arnish and collecting Molly from the car, she’d refused to walk any further so I let her go in it whilst we had our wee sojourn round the north end. After that I moved the lighting tower and cleaned up my shed Smile

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We had lunch booked at Raasay House

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That poster is from last year and it’s now £11.95 but worth every penny and the deserts are boodly amazing. I really am not a desert kind of person but  it’s well worth leaving space for one after your scrumptious ‘Sunday Roast’.

With our afternoon pre arranged I just pottered around in Callum’s shed and started fitting some IP65 rated LED strip lights from Screwfix.


On the way back from the excellent Sunday Roast we took both dugs for a walk to Screapadale, Molly being far, far more enthusiastic about this one than the morning’s affair Smile

Despite being absolutely stuffed with roast beef I did manage an hour or two in Callum’s shed working on the lights before ‘calling it a day’. Even though the shed is quite open and well ventilated it is surprisingly calm inside. I don’t think it was ever really ‘gale force’ yesterday but the wind was steady and straight off the sea. Consequently the wee Proven/Kingspan wind turbine behind Sonas generated 80kWh yesterday which is an average of 3.33Kw per hour. The turbine was only rated at 2.5kW when I bought it but I fitted the later carbon fibre blades before installing it so the newer ones are now rated at 3.2kW so pretty accurate I would say. The larger 6kW one next to the shed has not meter on it but I guess it would have put out almost double that yesterday. One thing for sure, the shed that that turbine heats was lovely and warm Smile


These are the ‘dump load’ resistors in my workshop, this is where the unused energy goes and they are at 350 degrees Celsius!! The wind, hydro and PV all generate electricity that charges the house battery bank, when that is fully charged the energy is converted to heat and heats up a large thermal store which supplies all our DHW and UFH. When that 1500lt store is up to around 78 degrees the excess energy is then diverted into these large air dumps in the sheds, some 16kW of them!!!!!


I really must clean the windows Smile or go outside and get a better picture,

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that’s more like it, guess who’s ‘coming to dinner’ Smile Smile Only kidding, he’ll be fine, the freezer is full. Anyway, that was it for Sunday, I was in bed once more before 21:00 with a good book, this one being the riveting “Shipwrecks of the P&O line” by Sam Warwick and Mike Roussel. OK, not everyone’s ‘cup of tea’ but I’ve dived on a few. The most memorable being the Salsette a 5800 ton ocean liner that fell fowl of one of Hans Howaldt’s torpedoes from UB-40 in 1917. She lies upright on the seabed in Lyme bay in around 45m of water and is a sight to behold.

Another being the SS Somali off Seahouses in Northumbria a general cargo ship of some 6000 tons she succumbed to an air raid in 1942.


Not in the same league as the Salsette but still a very interesting dive with much of her general cargo including military equipment, jeeps, tyres, toy lead soldiers and cosmetics still to be found. A good deal shallower too but in a helluva tide if I recall Smile

Anyway, that’s it, 7:40 now and time to do some work Smile

October 21, 2018

Better than expected

Filed under: daily doings, food, How I — Tags: , , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 10:35 pm

Well on the way to 23:00 just now so I can’t see me getting this finished tonight. However Darling Wife is on earlies tomorrow,  retired early and I’ve still got half a glass of Glen Livet left which cannot be hurried Smile

It’s been a nice leisurely Sunday beginning with a lie in bed until 8:00 then some perusal of the laptop whilst watching porpoises in Loch Arnish.


OK, you can’t actually see any but they were there honest Smile

After that it was feeding the animals and out with the dugs for a short walk to check the hydro turbine inlet.


There sure was plenty of water there indicating much rain of late but all was well despite the abundance of leaves recently blown off the trees. Down sowf you get ‘leaves on the line’ up here at Arnish we get ‘leaves in the filters’ Smile This is the inlet and filter for the Stream Engine hydro turbine which is just one of our many ‘renewable inputs’ at Sonas. This hydro turbine has a selection of three penstocks and different nozzles to produce between 50 and 800W. However with all our other solar panels, wind and hydro turbine I just leave it on the 600W setting for the winter. As it is supplied by what is basically a drain it only really works for six months of the year constantly. Sure it has little spurts during wet springs and summers but it’s really at it’s best from late September to March.

Subaru Forester rear chassis welding

I’m sure it will pass but the new Chinese vehicle lift has given me an enthusiasm for working under cars that I’ve not experienced in over thirty years. And, whilst I’m sure that will  wane, for now I’m making the most of it and welding up the rear chassis on the Egg Chariot.

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A bit OTT I know but that Land Rover chassis repair section and 19mm angle iron was just crying out to be used.

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After, of course I’d wrapped a welders mat around one of the legs on my new lift, wouldn’t be wanting to damage the paintwork hey Smile

I spent an inordinate amount of time doing this cos I’m really working hard at chillin’ and reducing my blood pressure for retirement. So much so that I packed up at 13:00, had a shower and took the Distiller out to lunch.

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Raasay House do an amazing roast Sunday lunch for £11.00. I think it’s 14:00 to 16:00 but it’s boodly delicious and well worth it. I had the roast beef but darling wife went for the vegetarian option and both were spectacular, even the turnip!!! If there is one thing I do not like it’s turnip but these were lovely, as was the cauliflower and broccoli.

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The drive home was pretty spectacular too with amazing rainbows over the Applecross Peninsular, Torran and Loch Arnish.

Of course I wasn’t that chilled that I could keep myself from doing another couple of hours under the Subaru,


but hey, I’m only practicing for retirement Smile

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