Next steps – February 2010

With the containers mired in the mud field, I’ve been trying to figure out where I can continue to make progress, and I believe the following areas bear further investigation.

1) Since the site is going to have to remain off grid for a while (there is grid power, but we have at least 1 mile of new power lines that would need to be put in place to get power to our property line), I am going to start documenting the components of a combined wind/solar system to provide power for at least our weekend stays.

2) The water system needs work.  While I’ve done some thinking about rain catchment, the rest of the system (do we want hot water? water under pressure? etc.) still needs to be designed and can be tested at our headquarters here in San Jose. I’ve also had a look at the roof of the containers, and while they are certainly going to keep rain from pooling (they do have a good camber on them) I’m not quite sure what the best method for capturing the water and diverting it without creating a standing pond is going to be, so some thought/study is needed there.

3) Blackwater/Graywater needs to be evaluated as well.  I do believe we will end up with a composting toilet, as it makes plenty of sense for a couple two weekends a month (and with the right system, could easily handle a longer duration/permanent use model), but we’ll also need to deal with shower and dish run-off, and given the water situation, we’ll want to be able to re-use/reclaim whatever we can.

4) Insulation/windows/doors/shutters.  Lots more to consider there, along with welding, painting, exterior sun-shade of the walls, etc.

And the deck, and a graveled drive (to help stabilize the mud areas going forward) etc., etc. etc.

It’ll unfortunately be at least a month before we can get back up to the land as well, so planning, and some evaluation is effectively most if not all of what I can do in the near term.  At least we are making some progress towards this dream!

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