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For the second discussion, I bring attention to the importance of water and possible need for electric.

If we have a piece of land with stream or river access, we could study designs and build a water wheel to generate power and set up a pump system to move water to the village. That would also help with flour milling and fishing. If we do not have river or stream access, I propose we build a windmill turbine and use it for power. Neither would produce much electricity but should give enough juice to power a few small items and charge phones or what have you.

Gasoline generators were also suggested but they are not a green system. We could use them, yes, but I personally would not want to. With the current price of gasoline, especially.

Water delivery systems would be another matter, as would be a system to carry excess or waste water away from the cottages. We could run plastic PVC pipes as both but I am no plumber and all I know about it is we would need to dig the trenches to bury the lines. We would need a pump to pump water into the delivery lines, which would have a direct line to our power source.

Also, even though our goals are to be natural and self-sustaining to some degree, waste water should NOT be dumped back into the same water source we pump water in from. Either a large septic tank(or more, preferably) would need to be placed or a type of lagoon dug a good ways away from our water source/s. 

I now open for comments, questions, suggestions, and the like..

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Replies to This Discussion

It would take a decent amount of solar cells to push a 2 amp motor. A typical water pump probably needs to be at least 1/4hp. The easiest thing to do, though it's not cheap, is to have several deep wells with hand pumps. There's a lot of surface water contaminates these days, so pure spring water might have me a bit nervous. I guess that all depends on your streams. Where I'm from, they're not safe, they pick up acid from the pines and oak trees, calcium from the sand, etc. Underground water's usually been well filtered. Also, a pipe running through the ground has danger of freezing, where a pipe straight down is usually good.  It holds a negative pressure for water pulling down, rather than a load of water sealed on both ends. Temperature conducts into the groundwater, so there's less chance of it freezing.

Solar cells put out a fraction of a volt @ a fraction of an amp. It takes a lot of cells to produce power for a motor like this. You'd probably have to cover an entire piece of 4x8' plywood to push a decent water pump. I think the roofs of buildings is a good place for this, if they're facing a convenient direction.

Solar power is one option. So far I have heard of wind energy, water turbines, and methane heat as well as power. I know boiling water removes a lot of natural toxins but for the amount of water we would most likely be using a day, most of it being cooler temperatures, I can't see boiling water at that level practical but would be possible. Would it also be possible to construct a charcoal/sand/gravel filter, much like a fish tank filter, to filter all of our water? All water, as it leaves our water source, could be filtered, and even from a well is not a bad idea, and run through the charcoal layer, the gravel layer, the sand layer like screens. It should filter out most toxins and from there to the boiler. After boiling, cycle it through another filter of charcoal and sand.

septic can be done with 2 large drums cut open or drilled @ the bottom and just drilled pipes @ the bottom extending out. Eventually they have to be emptied though, they collect solids. I've seen 2 50gal drums support a family of 2 tho for over 15 years. 

Someone who recently shared some ideas with me but wishes to remain anonymous had several amazing plans. I copied and pasted them out of chat so I have them. I just need to print them off. But included in there was, a water filtration system, 2 ideas for a hot water system, and a power/heat source. I will be looking into them myself over the next few days.


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