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Taking a trip back in time!


hex0rz

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I would not dare point a finger at any one person when I say this, but I'm willing to bet a few of you old chaps have had these sort of experiences! Maybe it was not just from the plain simple fact of being there when it was part of the times. Maybe it was just simply from a financial standpoint, and to have any more than what we call modern, was more of just a luxury then.

 

As I sit and think more and more daily, how I can bring myself to a more self sufficient person, I think continually about what things I do now, that was done differently in the past. My first subject matter for this thread is:

 

An ice house!

 

Now, I'm not typically the type that one would define as a prepper. I'm just a person that looks at security through liberty. If I'm able to do it myself and can save a buck at the same time and over the long haul see it as a self sufficient means, I'm game!

 

My father in law is not as old as dirt, but he also was an individual that was not wealthy by any means. Especially at certain times of his life, he lived on the indian reservation. They had at one time, their own little ice house. Not the large extraordinary ice houses like you may have seen in history lessons or on the channel as well. But a means of being able to keep and preserve their things that which needed to be kept frozen or cold.

 

This intrigues me to a high degree. As I can see that what lays in my future plans, a freezer may not be the most prudent thing. Modern technology makes dependent on many things and cannot be self sustained. The more primitive and basic I can get and still achieve the same function, purpose the better!

 

How many here, in their lives have had or either experienced the era before refridgeration? I understand that many people did not have an ice house so to speak, as their use to be large buildings that would house the ice blocks harvested from the source and then distributed appropriately. Where upon, the everyday consumer had a primitive like fridge, AKA the icebox.

 

Now, consider what were to happen if you lost electricity. Your freezers go down, but you may have 4 days or more depending on some factors before that freezer content goes bad. What then? Did you store fuel for a generator you may have bought? What if you ended up going through a long period of time without electricity for weeks?

 

I know as a younger boy, I experienced what the local area identifies as "ice storm". We were without power for over 2 weeks. The only saving grace, in a way, was that it was obviously during winter. What would have happened if we lost power for that long in the summer? Maybe you want to be an individual and live "off grid"?

 

Do you want to restrain yourself to modern tech to keep a freezer running through means that could fail?

 

The more and more I look at it, the more it seems advantageous to see that having an ice house is of huge benefit. The initial investment could be large, but over the long term, it small compared to the rewards.

 

I would very much like to give it a shot and have a scheme to harvesting my own ice. No, you don't need a body of water near you to achieve this, but you need to have a winter cold enough in your area to freeze water!

 

My father in law has told me his story about his family's ice house and how they had it built. It could literally keep ice frozen through the dead heat of the summer and still have ice left over by next winter!

 

I would like to hear from you fellas, do you have a story, an experience with an icehouse, icebox or the era of this matter? Do tell!

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Now thinking about that my little trip back to Burgdorf will make you think. To this day there is no city power back there at all. Everything is either all solar or gasoline generator. Being Warren, ID is even farther back and started this area back in the 1870's these people lived without modern anything and still do. Like stopping Secesh Meadows was a real treat being the bar was open and owner was remodeling. Most all lighting in the bar was either 12V or propane. As for fridge I'm not sure what they got... But there is a little village back there without modern city power and live to this day without it.

 

Hex just make a trip down to me I'll show you around to places and people that live without power (or other modern stuff).

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Propane refridgeration is definately an option...  all RVs are propane.  Seems crazy to use heat to make cold...   not cheap however.   The old snow bank is not a bad idea...  I've seen many people create a hole in the snow bank facing a door that slides or opens in.  During power outtages, we bring a big old boat cooler to the deck. 

 

I also built an old fashoned wooden box...  1/4 plywood with 1x1 corners with exterior trim slats.  The voids were filled with 1" board foam.  And the outter shell was constructed to accept a sprefoam shipping cooler with 2" thick walls & cover.  When we did 12 day primitive camps, we put a chunk of dry ice in the bottom & our frozen food on top.  We opened it once a day, removed the next day's dinner to thaw in the regular cooler.   The cold lasted over a week.  Hospitals recieve these insulated boxes several times a week with refridgerated supplies.  

They often come with a matching cardboard box... 

 

An ice house is labor intensive.  Ice must be made or cut...  you could make ice and store it.  and then moved to your insulated storage.  Making your own in saved plastic jugs is easier than cutting ice.  Every old farm around here had an ice house.

 

My grandfather's dairy farm (he bought in 1899, original parts of the house & barns dated to King Philip War in1675) had a spring house...  built over a year round spring.  When I was little, the water was piped into a concrete trough where the milk was cooled in milk cans.  The overflow was routed to the livestock for drinking purposes.  The spring house has been gone for 50 years now & mechanical refridgeration required by law.   A nearby fellow, dammed & tapped into a spring/stream on his property & it fed drinking water into his house through a plastic pipe...  the overflow went to his animals. 

 

You might wantto think about a root cellar...  I've seen some in a main house...  others dug into the ground nearby.  Make a good storm cellar too!

 

Is that far enough back in time for you?  The "new" barn was altered when I was a kid...  it was post & beam construction as is the house.  It was impossible to remove the wooden pegs holding the joints in place.  The old barn was destroyed by lightning...  i was a close thing getting the animals out but a lot of equipment was lost.  The spring house & corn crib were taken down in the 1960's to make way for progress...   

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Next step  is   CAN, CAN, CAN.   Meat, veggies,  MILK  yes, milk.        Dehydration next,   then  last ditch (for me)  would be   immersed in  lard,  or  salt.  

 

I agree with you,  some  basic  skills  MUST  be   passed on  to next generation.   I  don't want to  create a  'sh!tstorm'  debate in here,   just  saying  it doesn't hurt to have  some  survival skills,  basic  'growing, catching, hunting, fishing, preservation of food type  skills'.  

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I've been dabbling in making my own "MRE's".

 

Just add water and eat! We have alot of canning planned for this year... I have a huge dehydrator I made out of plywood and have done 25lb of carrots at a time and have done 50 pounds of potatoes as well. Its a really nice dehydrator for its capabilities!

 

I never thought about canning milk! :doh:

 

Our plan is to have a milker here sometime soon. We were going to have it this year but not everyone got on board with the idea on time... :rolleyes:

 

I had often thought about living with the Amish many times to gain the skills they have. But I doubt it would ever happen, and I tend to view them as cult.

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I never thought about canning milk! :doh:

 

Our plan is to have a milker here sometime soon. We were going to have it this year but not everyone got on board with the idea on time...

Thinking about  the  space  and   amount of  jars    needed to   'put away'  some  dairy products,    Probably the more   efficient way to store 'milk'  would be to  turn it into a cheese...    after all,    milk  is   ~  4-5% 'solids'  and  the rest  water..   pioneers  would  just  slice off  the  moldy part,  and  eat the  fresh exposed cheese..   Wax coating  for the rest.. 

  I suppose  you could   dehydrate  milk   down  a  bunch to take out  about half the water..   (just  hot enough  to  soft steam,  not  boiled)  then  can it.

 

since  milking cows  are  'daily'  givers,   and  highly 'portable' too..  (in case  you gotta  bug out)   might as well  just    use it as she gives it..    

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I have read about a fridge that used kerosene , sold by a store in Ohio, Lehmans is the name of the store , cater to Amish , Old Order Mennonite and sell alot to 3rd world countries , they have tried soy oil, olive oil with good results.

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I have read about a fridge that used kerosene , sold by a store in Ohio, Lehmans is the name of the store , cater to Amish , Old Order Mennonite and sell alot to 3rd world countries , they have tried soy oil, olive oil with good results.

 

Sounds like a typical RV refrigerator but instead of propane flame your using a kerosene flame. 

 

https://www.lehmans.com/p-3505-dometic-kerosene-refrigerator.aspx?show=all

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