WindTapper's Journal - Grassroots Green Energy Projects

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WindTapper's Blog

January 2013

Lovely Days

With temperatures in the 50's and 60's we also got sunshine today. I also discovered another possible reason for decline in honeybee populations: at least six bees investigated our bird feeders today and the weather is scheduled to freeze again in a couple of days.

Chickadees are not natural bee eaters, it seems. I wish we had some Redwing Blackbirds around today. I have seen one of those birds grab a wasp right out of the air. Swallows also specialize in bee eating.

I didn't stick around long enough to find out what finally chased the bees out of our main bird feeder, though. Woodpeckers like to eat bugs. Perhaps it was they who chased or ate away the bees today....

This was practically the best time to make money in the stock market on short-term "arbitrage" trades, so I have been too busy with that to make entries here. After Friday, though, I will probably go back to ignoring the stock market. February and May are almost always down months in the stock market. Sometimes, not, though. You never really know what is going to happen in the stock market, so don't risk yer shirt, as they say.

Dear Diary -- EDTA Research

So I get this advertisement in the mail today that claims its EDTA Keladine creme chelates plaque from arteries MUCH better than the pill form of EDTA because it bypasses the digestive system. They "only" want $579+ for 12 tubes of the creme plus 12 bottles of "Mineral Power Drop" as their "BEST VALUE".

So there I was, wondering where you can get EDTA naturally, since they call it an amino acid. Several websites tell us that EDTA does not occur naturally; EDTA "belongs to a class of synthetic compounds known as Polyaminocarboxylic acids;" plus, one website I never knew existed called "how-to-grow-marijuana" states that EDTA is "banned in Western Europe ...and Australia" and "EDTA is not biodegradable."

So, yet another amino acid is claimed to have wondrous properties, yet the jury is still out on its overall benefits to humanity. Seriously, this advertisement makes many claims for its creme, reminding me of the snake oil hawkers who used to come around to all the small towns in their wagons. If only it could do what the advertisement says, we could all live to be a hundred years old and all our white hairs would grow back the colors they originally grew as.

I'm going back to work on our shower because I would like to finish it before I die, lol.

Dear Diary

During this heating season I have been cutting up one gallon distilled water bottles -- perhaps 50 of them so far -- in order to store these potential turbine blades in smaller spaces. Perhaps someday someone will buy them from me, along with instructions for building home based, wind-powered electricity generators.

These days, though, I have been struggling with rebuilding our main shower. Crawling around in the crawl space under the shower stall a few days ago, I found that the copper drain pipe had never been properly seated. This explains a lot about a large depression in the crawl space -- or rather, I should say "hole" rather than "depression."

Anyway, I've been busy getting ideas for how to fix the drain pipes, which are all copper. Apparently, when the last joint was to be soldered, the technician -- whoever it was -- found that the pipe from the shower drain was coming down to meet the S-trap perhaps an inch too far away from being able to complete the normal overlapping of pipes in a 90 degree joint. So, the technician-- whoever it might have been -- simply "tacked" the two pipes together without properly coating the inside of the elbow end with solder so that it would bond with the other pipe's outside solder -- the pipe going to the S-trap.

So anyway, I drew a new opening diagram on the floor of the shower, placing it directly over where the joint should have been made originally, then re-cut the opening with a jigsaw. I have yet one more notch to make in the floor, but then I should be able to place the drain and drain pipe so I can measure where to trim it underneath for joining to the S-trap.

I have yet to remove the S-trap to check out its soundness before soldering the whole structure back together. I fear I must redo several joints, but it will be better in the long run if I make sure the rest of the structure is sound, outside of the crawl space, before finalizing everything.

I should get some more pix.... Oh yes. I finally applied all the bags of pelletized lime, emptying them into containers surrounding the final egress of our furnace exhaust. Who knows what will happen to the lime? If nothing else, I will spread it on our one acre of lawn, eventually.

Later Note: Hooray! I just got the drain gizmo seated in the shower floor! It is a three-piece drain gizmo so that I can tie the rubber matting that will be behind the lower tiles and the cement of the floor into the drain. It's complicated, lol.

Finally I can start measuring 3/4 inch marine plywood to patch the sub-floor, although, I should install the wood that will hold up the sub-sub-floor on top of the mud sill, too. Ah me. A woman's work is never done, they say....

Dear Diary

Job hunting takes up some of my time these days. Working out actually takes up a bit more time. I figure I will be more likely to find a job if I get back into shape and lose a bit of weight. Some remarkable workout DVD's exist these days. You can pick whatever motivates you and whichever skill level you are at, although you cannot exactly tell either of those attributes before you buy. On the other hand, Amazon has many DVD's in this genre for under $8. Even Kroger's had an exercise DVD display today. 'Tis the season, as they say, while ice coats all the tree branches....

I got a new drain for our shower a couple days ago. I have had time to let its form sink into my psyche as well as checking out how it could fit in situ. Now that I have considered it in situ, I realize I might have to redesign the new floor board that I was going to cut from 3/4 inch plywood.

Since I will have to create a larger hole in the floor -- greater than 1 and 1/2 inch diameter -- to accept a 2 inch plastic drain pipe that I will have to reduce plus clamp onto a 1 and 1/2 inch copper drain, then I might as well expand the new floor board beyond the minimum that I had planned to replace.

However, if I do that expansion, I will have to add another board to a floor joist on the side away from the drain, since the drain comes too close to the joist to have a reinforcement on the drain's side. This throws off my original plan, but perhaps it will work out better, to provide a more stable floor in the long run. On another hand, the new plan will require a lot more cutting and measuring.

So, what else do I have to do in an ice storm? Certainly I do not desire to travel.

BTW, I have not yet applied the several new bags of pelletized lime that we acquired. Snow, ice, and freezing rain keep me indoors these days -- away from projects out in our yard. Although, I did rescue the tiles that I had soaking in vinegar outside when the weather was 60 degrees for 3 days last week....

Busy Busy

I have been working on rebuilding our shower; cooking; recreating by watching The Day After Tomorrow with Dennis Quaid more than once; and searching for a job The next few days I plan to scrape and paint small portions of the outside of our house because the temperature will be over freezing for two or three days continuously before the next snow storm hits.

All the while I continue to cogitate on reducing our carbon footprint. My latest brainstorm is wondering about adding lime to the four inch pipe that carries our exhaust -- lime that is powdered and not pelletized. I believe this lime is more likely to react with CO+CO2 than the pelletized lime. I have also been wondering about using those bubble machines that you see aerating aquariums, but I cannot imagine being able to pump all our furnace exhaust through a tank of water laced with lime using only an aquarium pump.

So anyway, I just wanted to say I will be busy the next few days with household projects, but I have not given up on my plans for making a generator housing. I simply do not want to try to do it until I have it well planned and rehearsed because casting stuff in stone is a notoriously finalizing event, lol.

Still, I wonder if I could cast the coils, too, in acrylic-laced cement instead of using Bondo. The only can of Bondo I have ever had was nearly solid, which gave me a bad impression of the quality/liquidity of Bondo available in our area.

The "Good Ol' Days"

Remembering back to when I was, maybe, seven years old, I recall making artificial flowers. There used to be kits for making little things such as artificial flowers that you could get money for, but something happened to them. I don't know what, other than there probably being far more people willing to do the work and get paid than there were outfits needing such work to be done.

Similarly, some people probably could work at home addressing envelopes, but I am sure that computers have taken over that task. Now I have a kit from the March of Dimes for which I must address envelopes, but nobody is offering to pay me. This is volunteer work impressed upon me by a person on the telephone.

It was during the last Great Depression of the 1930's that a father-in-law of mine began to rebuild generators by winding their coils by hand, at their family's kitchen table in the evenings. He got money for doing this, though I have no idea how much, nor how, exactly, he got hooked up with such a job.

For a long time now -- possibly more than 30 or 40 years -- such jobs in newspapers, etc. have not panned out. They are 'pie in the sky" advertisements from seeming con artists designed to take your money without giving you anything back again. They require some sort of up-front payment by you to the person or persons who placed the advertisement, either paying for the information and/or for the initial materials from which you could "weave your gold from straw" so to speak.

I suppose memories of making artificial flowers, turning out crocheted pot holders,  making articles of clothing by sewing machine, or typing 90 words a minute for money have something to do with my desire to design whirligigs that people can build themselves, at their own homes, from available technologies. Right now I still cut up the surplus of distilled 1 gallon water jugs, imagining how I would describe this process to others, all for the day when I will be able to sell a book describing how people can build their own wind powered electric generators.

CO2 Reduction (Links to Recent Articles)

Science News article on CO2 reduction reports about an article in the Journal of the American Chemical Society by Alain Goeppert, G.K. Surya, and George A Olah about polyethylenimine as a CO2 reducer.

The Wiki entry gets you started. I will continue to search, especially for how to make this stuff. If I could make it I could put it inside my 4 inch exhaust pipes!

Here is another Science News article from 2008 reporting on a low-cost carbon filter, but I wonder why I haven't heard of it before now?

I will keep surfing and keep reporting back here on the polyethylenimine.

Footnote #9 in the Wiki article gives this link to a supplier of a hydrophilic solution supplier at Sigma-Aldrich, accessed Dec. 24, 2012, so this must be a recent Wiki entry. I do not understand why it is in liquid form. Perhaps the fact that the name is spelled differently has something to do with this. I do not know.

"New CO2 Scrubber from Ingredient in Hair Conditioners" is another article from Science News, March 25, 2010. Hmmm. I recently purchased an amino acid soy sauce. I wonder what would happen if I mixed my silicone hair conditioner with it? Btw, Wiki says that the liquid polyethylenimine also grabs CO2. I had been presuming the linear (and solid) polyethylenimine would be easier to use inside an exhaust pipe, lol. I will have to start reading ingredients more carefully when I can find them listed for hair conditioners.

Later Note, 1/8/13:
Aziridinium is an EBI name for polyethylenimine. "Ethylenimine is a known carcinogen" comes from one of the chemistry database websites. Sorry, but I forget which one. C2H5N is the chemical formula if you imagine the numbers being subscripts.

Ethylenimine being carcinogenic takes all the fun out of this technology. Some sites report that this carcinogen can be absorbed through the skin as well as inhaled. I am assuming they were talking about the non-linear forms which are always liquids, but I doubt whether tests have been made on the linear form -- which is mostly solid at room temperatures, although it is said that it is soluble -- as to whether or not the linear form is as readily taken up by the human form as the liquid ethylenimine is.

I wish that Science News reporters had looked further into the biochemical aspects of this set of molecules before reporting on its efficacy regarding CO2 reduction.

Other names for this C2H5N molecule are aziridine, azacyclopropane, dimethylenimine, DFG MAK, DFG TRK, and aminoethylene, and it falls into the group of "aromatic hydrocarbons" which is intrinsically carcinogenic due to benzene rings, I guess.

Along the way during my searches I ran across another interesting fact from concerning wood dust from Beech and Oak being carcinogenic. Arsenic, asbestos, coal tarpitch, and vinyl chloride are also on the list of known carcinogens besides nickel somethings-or-others, uranium, and zinc chromat-something.

Less Focused Pix

From earlier in the photo shoot than the previous entry:

I call this "Fall 2012 Election Season" from the Ohio University Main Green.

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