Friday, February 12, 2010

Shopping around

There is some good news. After several years of breaking my butt trying to save, there is a tiny bit in my savings. Enough that I feel comfortable shopping for a small piece of land. Not quite enough yet, but, enough to make a nice down payment if the right opportunity reared it's head. Really this is only practical if it is land close enough to home. Also, it has to be wooded. I can justify the thought if I don't have to pay the gas man for fuel to heat the house. I figure it took six face cords more or less to get us this far. So eight face should get us through an average winter and ten through a severe one. Ten face would set us back $750.00 if bought. I've recently found small 4 acre and up wooded plots within 20 miles for $1,000.00-$1,500.00 an acre. Land too wet or steep to build on, that is. However as long as it grows trees, squirrels and deer in harvestable quantity it's a practical idea. Payback in ten years or less for the purchase price just by harvesting heat for our house. Harvest a little extra to pay the taxes and we're good. The rule of thumb in these parts is a real cord per acre is a sustainable harvest. A real cord equals 3 face cords. And if we're real lucky, maybe we can find a place with a dry level corner that could hold a small cabin retreat eventually. Ideally this land would be located in either Wyoming county or northern Allegany. I would also consider Gennesee and Orleans counties. If any of my reader know of places for sale I'd love to hear about them. Also if anybody catches wind of the tax sales in these counties, I'd appreciate a heads up. Maybe it's just a foolish dream, maybe not. But, it's one I've carried for most of my life and I can't ever give it up. Also doing some other shopping. Looking for a flintlock rifle between .32 and .44 caliber for small game hunting. It has to be flintlock. Also looking for a 12ga single shot persussion or flintlock shotgun. It has to be traditionally styled. The old Euroarms Magnum Cape Gun would be the ideal. Just before hunting season I aquired a percussion Euroarms "Kentuckian" carbine for an unmentionable low price. The gun shoots clovers all day long at .50 yds with a tight patch, and keeps them in an inch at that distance with a looser easy to load patch. The Traditions flintlock I previously reported on will shoot as well from the bench. However the length of pull is so short I can't shoot it well off hand. The traditions may be available for trade on the right squirrel gun. I'm also looking to aquire soft lead scrap. If you're in the Rochester/Buffalo area and have lead let me know. On the tool front the only things that have evaded me so far are. A combination plane, Stanley preferred, though Sargent and Craftsman offered thiers recently enough to interest me. A broad axe, not a hatchet, I've already aquired a hatchet and an adze. A hand cranked forge blower. Pelenaka and the princess have confiscated my $3.00 hair dryer that was providing air for the forge. I'd rather be non-electric anyways. Other than that I'm pretty set for tools And I won't just be buying this year. I have the metal parts to build 2 wine/cider presses. Hopefully they will get built this year. Also I have decided to thin the herd a bit on the tool collection. There are many things that I have two and three of. And I plan on turning a couple old very worn out loggers saws into knives. I also have a big old spring steel plumbers snake I will be turning into patch knives. All will be sold for cash to add to the land fund, or bartered for other old fashioned stuff. Woods

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Sadder news!

We are out of wood! The furnace has been turned on for three days now. There is one small pile held in reserve against a storm/power failure. Enough to go maybe three days. The cat is ready to disown me. He's beeen sleeping under the stove for the last three months. Time to start cutting for next year. Pray for an early spring! Woods

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Sad news.

Hangmans Cottage is for sale! For several tears I have followed the blog of a Brittish homesteader. After several years of health issues he's selling his homestead. I'm posting a link to his site so others can get some inspiration. I know he's inspired me greatly. This is his post that got me started following him. Enjoy Woods