Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Lettuce try growing something?

So it's been a long while since I posted anything about my garden. That's mostly due to the fact that nothing has been growing at all. The Sacramento area has been having really cold and foggy mornings lately. The cold mornings (below freezing) at the end of December killed off my lone pepper plant  and sent my grapevine into dormancy. So really the only thing looking at in the garden was a lifeless twig along with a water-filled kitty litter container.

Lettuce germinating
Signs of life

Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Foundry: It's Time To Build A New Oil Tank

The new burner has proven success with the garden sprayer pressurizing the oil.  The next step was to build a new tank that holds more than one gallon, so there would be enough fuel to actually complete a decent melt without stopping to refill.
pump garden sprayer tank to pressurize oil for burner

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Maltodextrin Brewing and Taste Test Experiment

The last time I brewed, I decided to do a slight experiment with my new recipe.
Look mom I made beer again
I brewed the same recipe for my new brown ale in consecutive weeks. (I can't resist not buying grain when I'm on that side of town.) The second time I brewed though, I decided to add in 1 oz of maltodextrin to the boil.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Bicycle-Powered Air Compressor

bicycle compressor gif
After Halloween, I was looking in the dumpster for free pumpkins to cook.  Unfortunately, there were no pumpkins, but instead a free air compressor.  I figured this was a better find.  I tried plugging it in, and the motor started sparking like crazy and spinning.  This was nothing I wanted to try repairing, so I decided to rig it up to a bicycle instead.
Campbell Hausfeld extreme air compressor

Sunday, January 4, 2015

The Foundry: Trying Out the New Burner

Foundry season is back, and what a better way to kick it off than by testing out the new burner?  Since I was so confident it would work, I decided to use the opportunity to try casting the soap dish again.
Here is the burner with the input pipes attached.
burner with pipes
Like I did with the last burner, I set it up in a vise to hold it in position for testing.  Eventually, this will be replaced by the blower input pipe, which the burner will be mounted in.
burner in vise