Smallholders Insurance from Greenlands

Author Topic: Heating our homes from now on  (Read 4159 times)

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #45 on: September 28, 2021, 10:38:17 pm »
Shawls and knitted wool blankets are wonderful as a modern way of using your livestock to keep you warm.  I love my sheepskin slippers too, although they're not made from my own sheep, but they could be :thinking:
Knitting a shawl or blanket is something anyone can do, using big needles, when you might otherwise be doing nothing, watching tv or being a passenger in a car.  They take zero concentration and you can use up scraps left over from other projects.  Great  :thumbsup:


Knitting went clean out of fashion in the 1970s - what a huge shame.  Wool is about THE most ecologically sound material after grass and nettles, but decidedly more comfortable, so using this fibre should be up there with the main ways of fighting Climate Change
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

macgro7

  • Joined Feb 2016
  • Leicester
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #46 on: September 29, 2021, 08:03:40 pm »
Speaking of nettles - German army used nettles to make their soldiers uniforms during WW2 - there were massive cotton shortages at the time.


As for knitting going out of fashion - I can assure you it is seeing its revival - obviously not as many people knit as they used to in 1940s-60s, but I, and many more people make our living selling knitting yarn!
Growing loads of fruits and vegetables! Raising dairy goats, chickens, ducks, rabbits on 1/2 acre in the middle of the city of Leicester, using permaculture methods.

Buttermilk

  • Joined Jul 2014
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #47 on: September 30, 2021, 07:16:47 pm »
I have a home grown crop of flax that is ready to be spun.  Earlier in the summer I tried processing some nettles but would not like to have to wear the resulting yarn.  Lots of hats, gloves, socks and jumper that I have knit.

We run two wood burning stoves, a small one in the living room, lit tonight for the first time this autumn, and a larger one in the kitchen which runs the central heating and hot water.  It is not cold enough to be using that one yet.  All wood is free localy, either home grown or comes from the compost place down the road.  It is amazing what people throw away.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #48 on: September 30, 2021, 11:40:44 pm »
When I went up to Edinburgh in 1969 it seemed that every neighbourhood had its small yarn store, and many had several.  There were also Jenners and John Lewis on Princes St which each had a whole department devoted to yarn, needles, knitting patterns and everything else knitters, crocheters, lacemakers and embroiderers could want. There was also a large dedicated yarn store just round the corner from princes St, which might have been called Drummonds.  All those sources of yarn have now gone, went years ago in fact.  However, several new yarn stores have opened, some closing again fairly soon afterwards such as one on Bruntsfield. I currently count 5 small independent yarn stores left in Edinburgh, and one in Lanark.
Perhaps some of the supply has gone online, but although yes, there is a return to hand knitting for some, it's a different clientele. When I was growing up, every working girl and woman, and every housewife always had knitting on the go, and mending too.  Nowadays it's a bit more of a middle class occupation. Those who used to make and wear woollen clothes now buy short-life cheap clothes made overseas of manmade fibres.
Our weather here has just changed quite suddenly from unseasonally warm to a bit nippy and I reached straight away for my favourite handspun, hand-dyed, hand-knitted, much-mended sloppy wool jumper (I admit it's not wool from my own sheep as for that project I bought in BFL tops).  Instantly I was cosy, in fact I was boiling and soon had to take it off again.  If only wool could be the go-to fibre for everyone then we would not need to heat our homes so much to accommodate modern flimsy fabrics.
Whereabouts is your yarn shop @macgro7 ?  Have you noticed a change in clientele over the years?
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

macgro7

  • Joined Feb 2016
  • Leicester
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #49 on: September 30, 2021, 11:47:23 pm »
Whereabouts is your yarn shop @macgro7 ?  Have you noticed a change in clientele over the years?
Our shop is in Leicester but we wholesale too - and have customers in different places around the country.

It's people of all ages knitting nowadays. Vast majority are ladies
Growing loads of fruits and vegetables! Raising dairy goats, chickens, ducks, rabbits on 1/2 acre in the middle of the city of Leicester, using permaculture methods.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #50 on: September 30, 2021, 11:48:37 pm »
I have a home grown crop of flax that is ready to be spun.  Earlier in the summer I tried processing some nettles but would not like to have to wear the resulting yarn.  Lots of hats, gloves, socks and jumper that I have knit.

We run two wood burning stoves, a small one in the living room, lit tonight for the first time this autumn, and a larger one in the kitchen which runs the central heating and hot water.  It is not cold enough to be using that one yet.  All wood is free localy, either home grown or comes from the compost place down the road.  It is amazing what people throw away.

I tried retting nettles once too but decided I was doing something wrong so I gave up.  I certainly have an excellent source of them  :D
@Buttermilk I would love to know more about how you grew and processed your flax.  Is there any chance you might have time to describe it all for us in the Crafts section?  I know I can grow flax here as some of my birdseed fell from the feeders and grew, producing lovely blue flowers.  I'm not sure I would know how to process and spin it though - hence my interest   :garden: :spin: :knit:
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #51 on: September 30, 2021, 11:52:09 pm »
Whereabouts is your yarn shop @macgro7 ?  Have you noticed a change in clientele over the years?
Our shop is in Leicester but we wholesale too - and have customers in different places around the country.

It's people of all ages knitting nowadays. Vast majority are ladies

It's interesting that now people think of knitting being a female pastime, whereas in the past soldiers, sailors, miners and many other men could spin and knit, and nearly all weaving was done by men, whereas women spun.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

chrismahon

  • Joined Dec 2011
  • Gascony, France
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #52 on: December 10, 2021, 09:53:11 am »
I mentioned previously somewhere about the French discreetly stripping out the woodlands, leaving the outside untouched but removing 90% from the inside. Well there has just been a programme on TV about this. It showed a machine cutting trees out from around the few that were left and obviously it needed room to manoeuvre, so about 20 metres between the ones remaining. The programme was based around a protest group (one of many) trying to save France's woodlands.


What surprised me was that some of this wood goes to produce electricity and film was taken of this protest group at the wood storage site of a generating station. This site occupied about 10Ha, where the piles of wood were stored and the piles of sawdust kept ready to make pellets, some of which were sold for domestic heating. The station isn't used all year, just when demand is high.


The argument put forward in its defence was that the process is carbon neutral. They added that this wood burning was insignificant when compared to the Drax power station in North England. I didn't know that Drax ran on wood? Says they import pellets from America and Canada to fuel it and it consumes .........50,000 trees A DAY! At that rate no-one will be heating with wood for much longer.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #53 on: December 10, 2021, 12:52:14 pm »
@chrismahon yes I've mentioned Drax before and the imported wood it uses. The truly awful bit is that that wood is from VIRGIN US west coast rain forests and other virgin forests.  There is absolutely nothing carbon neutral about it, and it's destroying irreplaceable ecosystems, trashing the landscape to scrub, every bit as bad as Borneo and the Amazon. Transport of such large quantities of timber from the far side of North America to the UK has to use a vast amount of fuel and produce large amounts of GHGs.  They are 'discounted' in calculations because they are 'offshore'.  This is a sneaky way of calculating carbon footprints, where neither country accepts them, so international transport of goods is simply disregarded.  It seems to be the same with dumping rubbish - if you dump it 'offshore' ie in someone else's country, then you can wash your hands of it.  This is so blatantly wrong  :furious: :rant: - we are one planet, our junk and waste gases affect us all and have to be acknowledged and prevented.
So few people seem to know about Drax and about pelleted fuel.  They think they are doing the right thing by fitting wood pellet boilers for heating, but basically they, WE,  are being lied to.
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

oor wullie

  • Joined Jun 2012
  • Strathnairn
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #54 on: December 10, 2021, 09:36:21 pm »
Between 2 and 3 GW (about 7% of UK demand) of electricity comes from biomass - nearly all American wood at Drax I think.  Probably the worst possible fuel for a powerstation.  I hope the high prices for timber recently bankrupt them.

On the other hand though, a lot of sawmill waste now goes to be made into pellets and it is probably a good thing that that waste now has a value and so is finding a use.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #55 on: December 11, 2021, 01:14:16 am »
Between 2 and 3 GW (about 7% of UK demand) of electricity comes from biomass - nearly all American wood at Drax I think.  Probably the worst possible fuel for a powerstation.  I hope the high prices for timber recently bankrupt them.

On the other hand though, a lot of sawmill waste now goes to be made into pellets and it is probably a good thing that that waste now has a value and so is finding a use.


When I was a kid, we used sawmill waste as bedding for our turkey units.  I used to love going to the sawmill to see what was being chucked out with the shavings - sometimes there were door knobs which had gone wrong in the turning, banister spindles, acorns for the tops of posts and so on.  I found these half made items fascinating (I was very young, honestly) The smell was the best thing of all  :D .  The shavings would be delivered by the lorry load.


A problem with power stations such as Drax (if there are any more like it) quite apart from its very dodgy fuel supply, is that the energy obtained from the wood cannot be used directly to heat homes, it has to be turned into electricity which then has to be distributed to homes. I wonder what amount of energy loss enters the system by that extra stage.  With a good old log fire, the heat is direct.  You can sit round the fire and warm yourself, sort your mental health by staring into the flames.  With electricity and it's tortuous delivery, all you get is a vaguely warm house, no centre of heat and nothing but a white unit to stare at.  I know many people can't have fires in their homes, for pollution and modern house design, but humanity loves a good fire so it's wonderful to heat your house that way.



"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Buttermilk

  • Joined Jul 2014
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #56 on: December 28, 2021, 04:55:30 pm »
Ahh but Drax is no longer burning fossil fuel, as in coal, so it must be good - right?

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #57 on: December 28, 2021, 04:58:48 pm »
Ahh but Drax is no longer burning fossil fuel, as in coal, so it must be good - right?

Right.  There's the  :spin: and then there's the truth  :o
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow: over-crowded already. You really don't want to live here actually.
Re: Heating our homes from now on
« Reply #58 on: December 31, 2021, 02:42:50 pm »

When I was a kid, we used sawmill waste as bedding for our turkey units.  I used to love going to the sawmill to see what was being chucked out with the shavings - sometimes there were door knobs which had gone wrong in the turning, banister spindles, acorns for the tops of posts and so on.  I found these half made items fascinating (I was very young, honestly) The smell was the best thing of all  :D

That brings back a very pleasant childhood memory of my own @Fleecewife thank you:  Mr Smythe, the village carpenter allowed me to garnish wood shavings/sawdust from his small workshop for my guinea pigs and the family rabbit.  Walking through inches-thick dust & shavings was a delight all on its own, but the smell .... !!
« Last Edit: December 31, 2021, 03:47:44 pm by arobwk »

 

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