Friday, 5 May 2017

With the coming Floods I am thinking of building a House Boat.

With Flooding all over Ontario and Quebec and the forecast for non stop rain over the next 72 hours I am seriously thinking it is time to build that Off-Grid Houseboat.

" Already high Ottawa River water levels are expected to rise in the coming days as a deluge of spring rain continues.
The levels had been beginning to ease before the rain started Thursday night, but officials fear that's not going to hold. The forecast calls for rain to continue through Sunday, and a rainfall warning is in effect.

Water levels "had been stabilizing in the last day, the last couple days, but the immediate concern, and it's very worrying, is that this rainfall that we're getting now ... the levels will rise again," said Manon Lalonde,

an executive engineer for the Ottawa River
Regulation Secretariat, which carries out the
work ordered by the Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board.

The board manages the Ottawa River basin.
"Saturday, Sunday, into Monday, the peaking time and peaking level, will depend really on the locations ... and this will flood even more homes, so that's the big worry," Lalonde told CBC Radio's Ottawa Morning Friday.

House-Boat Plans:

Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Beautiful wrap around porch, and the view is breathtaking.

So we visited Killarney Ontario last summer and were amazed at the beauty of the area. On our way from having a fish fry on the docks we came across this wonderful little house with wrap around porch. It was beautiful. Then we turned to see the view from the porch ...

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Dandelion Root Extract as Treatment for Cancer

University of Windsor biochemistry researcher Siyaram Pandey has the official go-ahead to test dandelion root extract as a treatment for patients with terminal cancer. Dr. Pandey and his student researchers have successfully shown in the lab how the extract causes cancer cells to go through apoptosis, or cell suicide, while leaving healthy cells alone. - 

The Dandelion Root Project is aimed at showcasing scientific evidence for the safe and effective use of dandelion root extract and other natural health products for cancer therapy. The Dandelion Root Project started in 2009 in a bid to investigate the anticancer effect of the root extract of dandelions against cancer cells in the lab (in cells and in animal models). This project started with funding from the Knights of Columbus, Chapter 9671 (Windsor) and has been sustained by funding from other sources, including Seeds4Hope Grant (local Cancer Foundation), Lotte & John Hecht Foundation, The Pajama Angels and the Jesse & Julie Rasch Foundation. Private and personal donations have been made from the Windsor local community, as well as from all around Canada.

Since the commencement of this project, we have been able to successfully assess the effect of a simple water extract of dandelion root in various human cancer cell types, in the lab and we have observed its effectiveness against human T cell leukemia, chronic myelomonocytic leukemia, pancreatic and colon cancers, with no toxicity to non-cancer cells.

Furthermore, these efficacy studies have been confirmed in animal models (mice) that have been transplanted with human colon cancer cells. We also applied for Phase I clinical trials in 2012 for the use of DRE in hematological cancers and in November 2012, we obtained approval for the administration of DRE in human patients and currently, the dandelion root extract is under Phase 1 clinical trials for drug refractory blood cancers.

 Studies to understand how dandelion root extract can identify differences between cancer cells and non-cancer cells are underway, while at the same time, the identification of the active components within the extract is ongoing. We are excitingly awaiting the results from these studies.

How to Make Dandelion Wine :

We made our own Maple Syrup this year !

About 15 years ago I planted 2 Maple Trees. A Sugar Maple in the front yard and an Autumn Blaze (mix of Red and Silver Maple) in the Back yard. Finally they are both over 10" diameter which means I could start tapping them for sap. I used hollowed out Sumac branches as taps / spiles and tapped them when the daytime temperature started to climb above 10 degrees celsius and dropped to -10 celsius at night....

The sap ran for about 2 weeks and we collected about 5 gallons of Sap (20 quarts) .... I ordered a 4 quart Cast Iron Dutch Oven from Amazon for about $ 33 and do far I have boiled 24 cups (6 quarts) of Sap down to 2 cups of Maple Syrup.  So I still have lots of Syrup to make.

Texsport Cast Iron Dutch Oven with Legs  $33

I think this is going to be an annual practice and we will make our own Maple Syrup each year.

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Making Maple Syrup with the Kettle Boys at Fortune Farms in Almonte Ontario

"A visit to Fortune Farms is not complete without a trip up the trail to see the Kettle Boys. This team of four interesting characters make maple syrup in the traditional pioneer method using iron kettles over open fires. To amuse themselves and visitors while they are waiting for the sap to slowly boil to syrup they have a variety of toys and games. They are only too pleased to share their activities with visitors, especially children." -

Saturday, 25 March 2017

Almost April and another snow storm here in Canada.

View out the front window this morning ...

We are March 25th and still getting snow here in Eastern Ontario Canada, about 20 minutes from Upper State New York.

Maybe we have 12 more weeks of winter up here ???

My Empire Apple Tree and a few spruce and pine trees in the yard.

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Where to buy Solar Panels ? Best Prices & Quality

A question that comes up every day in the "Living off the Grid" Facebook Group is where is the best place to buy Solar Panels ... so I'm going to start a list here on the Group blog and will update often. You can also include your preferred place to buy Solar panels in the Comments below and I will add to the list.


1. The Top place I see Recommended by Group Members so far is:
They list them by cost per watt ...
They have discounted Solar Panels you can buy by the palett (25) as low as .77 cents per watt.
So the more you buy the lower the price.  They currently have Free Freight February going on.

2. Home Depot will have sales on Solar panels that brings the cost down to $1 per watt and will offer Free Shipping. (Watch for Sales)

3. Renogy is often mentioned in the Group. I know that sells these and includes Free Shipping:   Renogy 100W Polycrystalline Photovoltaic $126 with Free Shipping (Watch for Sales)\

4. Fabtech has new and used panels for as low as .37 per watt.  300W+ Mono Solar Laminates from US manufacturer


1. Solacity  in Kemptville Ontario has a 260 watt solar panel for $202 CDN which works out to 77 cents CDN per watt or 54 cents US$ per watt  ...

2. where they have panels that are manufactured in Ontario and sell for $1 per watt (Shipping is $133.64 )

3. Many people starting out will also buy solar panels at Canadian Tire whenever there is a sale. Regular prices are very high.

Here is a Website that lists the Best Prices on Solar Panels:

Currently: Canadian Solar CS6X-320P is listed at the lowest Cost per panel at $0.51 per watt
Please list your Favorite place to buy Solar Panels in comments below with cost per watt and your commentary on why it's the best place to buy Solar Panels.

Friday, 3 March 2017

How many KWhr of Electricity do you use each day ?

The first step in going off the Electrical Grid is to understand how much Electricity you currently USE and determine how much you actually NEED.

Do you know ? You can check your Electrical Bill and it should show you how much you are presently using. 1000 KWhr per month ? 500 kWhr / month ?

The average is around 900 kWh per month .... about 30 kWhr per day.
To go off the grid you will need to get below10 kWhr/day (300 Kwhr/mo)  or the Solar -Wind-Generator Power system will cost you a Fortune.

You need to determine what appliances you will need in your  new Tiny Offgrid Home. Fridge, heater, fan, TV,  LED Lights, Internet ? You can figure out how much electricity your current appliances are using and begin to calculate how much Solar - Wind - Generator - Alternative power you will need to keep your stuff running.

The P3 Kill a Watt Electricity Usage Monitor is a Great tool used to help you determine what each appliance uses each hour, each day, each month .....

Available on Amazon for $23 with Free Shipping:

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

We need more Dynamo Inventions .....

Solar Lantern, with hand crank Dynamo Power to charge your iPhone ...

$20 (Regular $90) at Amazon

Why don't we have more  
Dynamo Powered Devices ? 

A dynamo is an electrical generator that produces direct current with the use of a commutator. Dynamos were the first electrical generators capable of delivering power for industry, and the foundation upon which many other later electric-power conversion devices were based, including the electric motor, the alternating-current alternator, and the rotary converter. 

Today, the simpler alternator dominates large scale power generation, for efficiency, reliability and cost reasons. A dynamo has the disadvantages of a mechanical commutator. Also, converting alternating to direct current using power rectification devices (vacuum tube or more recently solid state) is effective and usually economical. A dynamo is an electrical generator that produces direct current with the use of a commutator. Dynamos were the first electrical generators capable of delivering power for industry, and the foundation upon which many other later electric-power conversion devices were based, including the electric motor, the alternating-current alternator, and the rotary converter. Today, the simpler alternator dominates large scale power generation, for efficiency, reliability and cost reasons. A dynamo has the disadvantages of a mechanical commutator. Also, converting alternating to direct current using power rectification devices (vacuum tube or more recently solid state) is effective and usually economical.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

3 Great Solar LED Lighting Options

We have been trying some of these Solar LED lights and are very impressed with how quickly and easily they charge under full sun and even low sun and cloudy days. They built-in lithium batteries also hold their charge for up to 12 hours.

Solar String Lights (72 ft, Waterproof)  $13.99 (Save 63 %)   ---

  • High Efficiency Solar Powered: No battery or electricity required, charge by the sunlight, can work up to 10 hours or more when fully charged. The outdoor string lights will automatically turn on when it's dark and turn off during the day. 8 modes from steady color to various flashing
  • Durable, Bendable & Waterproof: Made from thin and bendable copper, 72 feet length, durable enough to experiment with any shapes. These fairy lights are waterproof IP65, so can be used outdoors as well (please kindly note it can not be immersed in water)
  • Easy to Use and Store: Light-sensoring panel, just place the solar panel where there is full sunlight and it will work auotomatically at night. Please fully cover the panel if you need the lights work during the day. It's lightweight, you can wrap it around a cardboard until the next use
  • Multi-Application: Ankway string solar lights provide nice, soft and delicate warm white light for your pathway, window, patio, fence, garden, porch, clubhouse, pool, bushes, yard etc
  • 12 Month Warranty

Solar String Lights 72ft 200 LED Fairy String... $10.99 (Save 80 %)  ---

  • ✔Specification:Length:22m/72ft, Lamp beads quantity: 200,Two work modes: steady-on and flash.
  • ✔Waterproof (IP65):Perfect for outdoor and indoor use.
  • ✔Higher efficiency: 51% larger upgraded solar panel leads to high speed charging for lights and with CE certification.
  • ✔ High capacity: Double premium battery cell 1.2v 1600mA Charging time: 6-8hours.Working time:8-15hours.
  • ✔Easy to install. NO wiring required,NO BATTERY.Recharged by solar panel under sunlight, totally Eco-friendly product

LightMe Portable 15W 130lm Solar LED Bulb $8.99 (Save 55%) 

  • This solar light relies on solar energy, which is clean, endless and environment-friendly. In daytime, when there is sunshine, the solar panel can convert the solar energy to electric energy and store it in the battery. The charged bulb can be used as a mobile lighting lamp.
  • The photovoltaic panel is fixed in the roof or a place with sufficient sunlight, the wire is introduced into a room, and the plug is plugged in the port for charging ( a 5-8V charger can be used for charging as well) .
  • Energy Saving, Long Life Expectancy, Low Power Consumption, Rechargeable. The system is mainly composed of solar panel, light source and battery.
  • Power source: Solar panel, home electricity charging. Capacity of lithium battery: 850ma/3.7V; continuously effective lighting of fully charged bulb: 5h; Bulb Using Time: 2-3 hours;
  • Note: The solar light can be used in any weather, but it is not waterproof. Ideal for home lighting, camping, cooking, working, reading, emergency and blackouts,etc.

Monday, 20 February 2017

Small Canadian town will give Land and Job to anyone willing to move ...

The Farmer's Daughter Country Market writes:
"BEAUTIFUL ISLAND NEEDS PEOPLE. We are an established business in the heart of Cape Breton, rich in jobs, land, and potential, but no people. Are you someone who is looking to live a simpler life, close to nature, in an area that still believes in community meals and weekly jam sessions?

We can't give you big money, but we can give you an awesome life. Our business is busy from May to December, with slower months January to April, so you can enjoy our amazing winters. We have lots of good ideas and we want to
continue to build on our accomplishments but we don't have enough hands to help.
We are located in a little village called Whycocomagh, which can be found in the middle (the heart) of Cape Breton. It is an area surrounded by beautiful mountains and the shining Bras d'Or lake where kayaks and canoes outnumber motorboats.

We are a true four-season climate and we love it that way. We are looking for people who are environmentally conscious, want to be part of a community and will see our business not as you work for us, but we all work together to create something to be proud of. If you take pride in being friendly, helpful, and positive and have skills in the food industry or customer service, then you are who we are looking for. We cannot offer you big money (wages in local small Cape Breton businesses are not high) but we can offer you a great incentive to come and try us out. One thing our business does have is LOTS of LAND.

If you decide this opportunity might fit your dreams and goals for a close to nature and community focused life, then we are willing to offer you 2 acres of woodland where you can immediately set up your tiny house or quaint cabin. Plus give you access to our farmland and other resources we have available. If you are still working with us after five years and we all still like each other after that time, then the land is yours for the cost of migrating it out and putting it in your name. Cape Breton is amazing but our population is decreasing. Corporate development has been seen as the solution in the past but that often comes at the expense of our environment. We think there is a better way.

If you are interested in this unique opportunity please email your resume along with a letter about yourself to
Via: Farmers Daughter Country Market Facebook Page

** UPDATE: They have hired 3 families from British Columbia and will be looking to hire 3 to 4 more in the Spring. - DO NOT include your email / information in comment Section of this blog.  Send your resume and story to their Email Address as Instructed above.

To see a few images of  Whycocomagh, Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia, Canada and the Farmer's Daughter Country Market  watch the Video below....,_Nova_Scotia /  CTV News Update 


Thursday, 16 February 2017

What does "Off-grid Living" mean ?

What is Off-grid or Off the Grid Living ?

"Off-the-grid is a system and LIFESTYLE designed to help people function without the support of remote infrastructure, such as an electrical grid.
In electricity, off-grid can be stand-alone power system or mini-grids typically to provide a smaller community with electricity.
Off-grid electrification is an approach to access electricity used in countries and areas with little access to electricity, due to scattered or distant population.

The term off-the-grid (OTG) can refer to living in a self-sufficient manner without reliance on one or more public utilities. People who adopt this lifestyle are called off-gridders...

Monday, 13 February 2017

Free Log House built in 1850 ... Take down and Haul away

Log House built in 1850. Free. Would make a great cabin or retreat. Cabin to be removed from property. You take it away. I would like it gone by April 1st if possible. Terms are – you are responsible for taking it down and hauling it away. It’s free for the taking.....  

Address Rockwood, ON N0B2K0 ..... Near Guelph Ontario

Friday, 10 February 2017

20 Watt - 12 Volt Solar Power system with 400 Watt Inverter for $ 115

I am going to build a very small  20 Watt Solar Power - 12 Volt generator to power some small DC and  AC appliances. Here in Ontario Canada, if I rotate the Panel I should get a good 8 hours of sunshine. So 20 watts * 8 hours = 160 Whr of power to trickle charge a 12 Volt Battery.

I'm on a very small budget of about $100 and I'll be looking for the best deals at Amazon and Walmart. This is the best deal Solar Panel I have found so far: ECO-WORTHY 20W 12V Solar Panel Kit: 20 Watt Polycrystalline Solar Panel & Battery Clips & 3A Charge Controller:   

$59.99 with Free Shipping

Can be applied to varies DC appliance, Ideal for everyday use
  • High efficiency solar cells, small in size and easy to take
  • Water-proof solar panel with long lasting aluminum frame provides over 20 years lifespan
  • 3A 12V/24V PWM charge controller, overcharge and over discharge protection for the battery.
  • Battery clips with 2m extension wire, easy and convenient for operation

  • This is the Battery I am looking at :

    $16.27 with Free Shipping

    ExpertPower 12V 7 Amp EXP1270 Rechargeable Lead Acid Battery
  • BATTERY TYPE - 12 Volt 7 Amp 20 Hour Sealed Lead Acid Battery With F1 Style Terminals
  • RUGGED CONSTRUCTION - The High Impact Resistant Battery Case Is Made Up Of A Non-Conductive ABS Plastic. This Material Has a Strong Resistance To Shock, Vibration, Chemicals and Heat.
  • AGM TECH - The Acid Inside Is Absorbed Between The Plates And Thereby Immobilized By A Very Fine Fiberglass Mat. This Along With The Valve Regulated, Spill-Proof Design Of Our Batteries Allows Trouble-Free, Safe Operation In Any Orientation
  • USER FRIENDLY - Easy, One-Time Installation Of Our Maintenance Free and Valve Regulated Batteries Will Get Your System Or Application Running In No Time At All

  • This is the Inverter I am looking at ...  

    $38.99 (45% off)

    BESTEK 400W Power Inverter DC 12V to AC 110V Car Adapter with 5A 4 USB Charging Ports

    BESTEK Advantage America's #1 power inverter brand. Provides 400W continuous DC to AC power and 1000 watts of peak power             
  • Dual 110V household electrical outlets provide enough power
    for your laptop, digital camera, TV, fan, refrigerator, game console, DVD/Blu-Ray player, GPS, lamps, and more
  • 5A/ 4-Port USB charging ports make this power inverter ideal for charging your phones, tablets, and other USB-powered devices
  • Built-in replaceable 30A/32V*2 fuses and cooling fan for safety and easier maintenance. This power inverter has over voltage, overload, over-current, under-voltage, overheating, short circuit protection
  • Comes with 2.3ft car cigarette lighter plug and 2ft black/red battery clips to plug into your cigarette lighter or connect directly to your vehicles battery

  • I will add a list of AC and DC appliances I can run with this  $115 set up. Definitely my 6 watt LED Lights....

    10 - 6 watt LED Light bulbs ( 60 watts)
    Lap top (45 watts)
    Ceiling Fan (25 watts)
    Clock radio (2 watts)
    Electric Blanket (200 watts)
    Smart Phone Charger (7 watts)
    TV 19" (40 watts)

    Sunday, 5 February 2017

    The Lodge at Killarney Ontario

    The beautiful Lodge interior at Killarney Mountain Lodge in on the shore of Georgian Bay in Killarney Ontario.

    One of the most spectacular landscapes you will ever see.

    Killarney is about a 4 hour drive North of Toronto Ontario in Canada and it's where many of the Group of Seven and Tom Thomson created their most iconic paintings.

    You can camp at the Killarney Provincial Park and rent kayaks and canoes and paddle crystal clear waters next to the white Quartzite mountains of La Cloche.

    There is also land available in the area at reasonable prices to build your own remote Offgrid Log Cabin,


    Saturday, 28 January 2017

    A perfect winter's day.

    I'd say it doesn't get much better than this. If you like snow and Log Cabins that is ....

    Friday, 27 January 2017

    Safety with Solar Power Installations

    Photovoltaic System - Equipment
    •A photovoltaic solar system typically consist of the following equipment:
    –Disconnecting Means (i.e., switches or disconnects)
    –Overcurrent Protective Devices (i.e., fuses or circuit breakers)
    –Conductors (or Cables)
    –Load Center (s)
    –Equipment and System Ground
    –A Utility Meter

    –Solar Panels
    Risk of Fire or Personal Injury Fundamentals
    •A circuit is considered to be able to start a fire or cause a personal injury if it is able to deliver no less than 2 volts and any one of the following conditions:
    –An available continuous power level of 240 volt-amperes or more, or
    –A reactive energy level of 20 joules or more
    A fire may also be started by excessive temperature due to overload or arcing effect....


    Saturday, 21 January 2017

    Longest Life Batteries for Solar : Trojan T105 RE 6 Volt

    Specifications: Model: T105-RE Voltage: 6V 20 Hour Rate: 225Ah 100 Hour Rate: 250Ah Weight: 67lbs Length: 10.375in.
    Width: 7.125in.
    Height: 10.875in.
    Country of Manufacture: U.S.A.  Flooded lead-acid batteries have the longest track record in solar electric use and are still used in the majority of stand-alone alternative energy systems.
    They have the longest life and the least cost per amp-hour of any of the choices. However the other side of the coin is, in order to enjoy these advantages, they require regular maintenance in the form of watering, equalizing charges and keeping the top and terminals clean.
    Some examples of flooded lead-acid batteries used in solar and wind electric systems are 6 volt golf-cart batteries, 6 volt T105's and 2 volt industrial cells for large systems. Specially designed deep-cycle cells are much less susceptible to degradation due to cycling and are required for applications where the batteries are regularly discharged, such as photovoltaic systems, electric vehicles (forklift, golf cart, electric cars and other) and uninterruptible power supplies. These batteries have thicker plates that can deliver less peak current, but can withstand frequent discharging. Trojan Battery Company is the world leader in deep cycle battery technology. Since 1925, Trojan has been a pioneer in the development of superior deep cycle batteries..... 

    Trojan batteries have been used in standalone power systems in remote cabins for the past 25 years with great success. Because of their low initial cost, they are the most affordable true, deep cycle batteries. The T105 golf cart battery is designed to be used in small electric vehicles where they are cycled heavily and last about 2 years. In a remote home system where they are cycled down 20% every day they can last 3 to 6 years. Trojan’s Renewable Energy (RE) Series is a line of technologically advanced lead-acid deep cycle batteries, optimized for renewable energy applications such as solar PV, small wind, and micro hydro. They have heavier duty separators and plates designed for longer life and their warranty has been extended to two years free replacement and 60 months additional pro-rated on the L16s and 36 months pro-rated on the T-105.
    This series of deep cycle, lead-acid batteries from Trojan are optimized for micro-grid, solar, small wind, and other renewable energy uses. Designed for extended lifespan, the Premium line has a full two-year warranty, and a prorated for up to five years.

    Trojan Premium line of batteries are made with a 10-year battery life in mind. They feature Alpha Plus Paste with T2 Technology, which considerably improves the porosity of the active material resulting in improved performance over longer periods of time; combined with Trojan’s DuraGrid design it increased the overall life cycle of the battery.

    The case of of all the Trojan Premium batteries use their branded Polyon container which is a rugged protection against difficult environments and prevents potential acid leaks.

    Providing increased lifespan, Trojan’s Smart Carbon technology is now featured in both the Premium and Industrial lines, improving partial state of charge (PSOC) performance and longevity alike. The specially designed formula of Smart Carbon enhances charge acceptance and efficiency by increasing the electrochemically active surface area of the battery. This is particularly beneficial (and efficient) when batteries are not regularly charged to full capacity.

    Mechanical especifications:
    Lenght: 10.375"
    Width: 7.125"
    Height: 11.25"
    Weight: 67 lbs

    Electrical especifications:
    Voltage: 6 V
    Capacity @ 20hr discharge rate: 225 Ah
    Capacity @ 100hr discharge rate: 250 Ah

    Available here $166 :

    Note: I found the Trojan T-105  Available in Canada (Toronto) for $160 here :
    I have contacted owner for Shipping Costs from Canada to USA, but $160 Cdn =  $112 US dollars so this is a very good deal.

    Friday, 20 January 2017

    Honda 2000 Generator for Offgrid Back-up

    • Honda EU2000I 2000 Watt Inverter Generator

      Starting System: Recoil

    • Noise LevelP: 59 dB at rated load 53dB at 1/4 load
    • AC Output: 120V 2000W Max. (16.7A) / 1600W Rated: (13.3A)
    • Run Time per Tankful 3.4hr @ rated load 8.1 hrs @ 1/4 load
    • Super quiet, Inverter - stable power for computers and more

    The Honda 2000W Super Quiet Inverter Series Generator produces 53 to 59 decibals of sound during operation, which is less noise than a regular conversation. It boasts a powerful Honda GX100 engine with a 0.95-gallon fuel tank capacity. It can operate for as many as 8.1 hours on a one tank of fuel. At 46 pounds, this lightweight generator is small and compact. It is still able to produce clean, reliable power, similar to that of a standard household outlet, using inverter technology. The Honda 2000W inverter generator can also be used in tandem with another identical generator for twice the power. To protect this outdoor power equipment, Honda Oil Alert is used. This turns the generator off when the amount of oil reaches dangerous lows. It is also equipped with circuit protection to prevent overloading from occurring during operation...

    I ran this non-stop for 9 days .... Two refrigerators, 4 fans, a small TV, a few 
    lights and charged cell phones. 13 years old and still starts on the first few pulls.