Search found 47 matches

by Colin
Tue Jan 12, 2010 10:09 am
Forum: Allotments, Veg Patches and Container Gardening
Topic: Cold frame under soil heating with solar panels
Replies: 7
Views: 2132

Re: Cold frame under soil heating with solar panels

Make sure to insulate the hotbed soil from the surounding soil otherwise any heat you do gain from the panel will be lost in short order. Extruded polystyrene (xps) is the only insulation that can be used below ground.
by Colin
Tue Nov 24, 2009 4:57 pm
Forum: Bring back the Goodlife - and other Television and Radio related things
Topic: River Cottage - Hemp
Replies: 27
Views: 3406

Re: River Cottage - Hemp

Henry Ford used it to make cars http://www.hempcar.org/ford.shtml Ford recognized the utility of the hemp plant. He constructed a car of resin stiffened hemp fiber, and even ran the car on ethanol made from hemp. Ford knew that hemp could produce vast economic resources if widely cultivated. It look...
by Colin
Wed Nov 11, 2009 12:35 pm
Forum: Green Building
Topic: Geodesic Greenhouse
Replies: 25
Views: 4805

Re: Geodesic Greenhouse

I wouldn`t rely on tape staying put for very long with rain and ice, especially with 60 joints to seal. A mechanical clamping method is better long term although its more expensive than tape. Mamos, it can be done but the cost/complexity soon adds up plus it`ll be higher maintenance... doesn`t cost ...
by Colin
Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:25 am
Forum: Green Building
Topic: Geodesic Greenhouse
Replies: 25
Views: 4805

Re: Geodesic Greenhouse

If you have a few grand to spare for the ETFE, that`ll solve the issue unless it gets damaged :wink:
Inflated pillows will cost twice the price plus another 500 for hardware and control. Triangular pillows don`t work too well. The Eden Project had a budget of £50m to work with :mrgreen:
by Colin
Tue Nov 10, 2009 7:47 pm
Forum: Green Building
Topic: Geodesic Greenhouse
Replies: 25
Views: 4805

Re: Geodesic Greenhouse

If you plan to cover it with poly the main issue (apart from waterproofing) is you`ll need to replace it at some point. If the design locks the poly between the triangles you`ll need to dismantle a good percentage of the structure to remove it.
by Colin
Mon Oct 12, 2009 12:47 pm
Forum: How do I??
Topic: Plan/build a sturdy shed/workshop for windy location?
Replies: 17
Views: 4218

Re: Plan/build a sturdy shed/workshop for windy location?

A dome roof would be the best shape. A lightweight timber frame covered with 2 layers of chicken wire, plastered with a 3:1 mix of sharp sand and portland cement. Hurricane proof :wink:
by Colin
Wed Oct 07, 2009 2:35 pm
Forum: Herbs and Vegetables
Topic: polytunnel advice ?
Replies: 40
Views: 3898

Re: polytunnel advice ?

I find it strange why you have to employ these fixes to acheive what should have been addressed at the design stage. Admittedly siting it on a slope isnt a big problem but you shouldnt have to do it just to get the ventilation upto par. I guess the alternative for those without sloping gardens is to...
by Colin
Tue Oct 06, 2009 2:01 pm
Forum: Green Building
Topic: Bottle Wall building
Replies: 13
Views: 3308

Re: Bottle Wall building

A bottle wall can be used for a planter which provides a few added bonuses
http://www.sunnyjohn.com/photos2/tours/ ... age024.htm
by Colin
Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:34 pm
Forum: Herbs and Vegetables
Topic: toms - how high?
Replies: 16
Views: 909

Re: toms - how high?

I always grow a few plants starting in february and then take cuttings from only the strongest, healthiest ones to stock the garden. Seeds can be hit and miss sometimes but a cutting has exactly the same traits as the plant it came from.
by Colin
Sat Jul 25, 2009 3:22 pm
Forum: Allotments, Veg Patches and Container Gardening
Topic: Swimming ponds
Replies: 2
Views: 676

Re: Swimming ponds

I doubt the taxman would swallow it, although its still worth asking if you do a lot of demonstrations as thats the percentage of time you might be able to claim for :wink:
by Colin
Wed Jul 22, 2009 4:24 pm
Forum: But what can I do?
Topic: This forum
Replies: 26
Views: 4007

Re: This forum

I far as i`m concerned, the eccentrics/mad scientist types are the ones who make the biggest difference. I`m probably labelled eccentric by eccentrics :wink:
by Colin
Sat May 23, 2009 7:37 pm
Forum: Alternative Energy
Topic: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass
Replies: 19
Views: 3393

Re: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass

If its working for you thats the main thing. I haven`t seen the original calculations do you have a copy? If its a one size fits all type approach it wont be accurate as every greenhouse has a different air volume and heating load based on the glazed area, the orientation affects the solar gain. If ...
by Colin
Sat May 23, 2009 5:18 pm
Forum: Alternative Energy
Topic: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass
Replies: 19
Views: 3393

Re: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass

Hi Green Aura,
When you delve into the math and physics its just about the bare minimum needed for the task.
Its not easy to tame the sun using a cubic metre of gravel.. its like fighting a forest fire with a glass of water :wink:
by Colin
Sat May 23, 2009 5:13 pm
Forum: Alternative Energy
Topic: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass
Replies: 19
Views: 3393

Re: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass

It depends on the back pressure and what flowrate you need really. The most powerful 12v fan i`ve come across is a 3" bilge blower, it`ll do 90cfm and can handle about 1/2" wc pressure. It draws 1 amp flat out and is fairly quiet running. Not exactly cheap but not too pricey at £25 (ebay i...
by Colin
Sat May 23, 2009 4:38 pm
Forum: Alternative Energy
Topic: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass
Replies: 19
Views: 3393

Re: Heat your greenhouse and home from broken glass

There`s a fan driving the system which is quite a bit larger than it needs to be but i went bigger so i could experiment with higher airflow rates. It has its own fan speed controller and flat out it draws 170w, in normal service its running at less than half of that. The fan is also controlled by a...

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