sailing the farm - join our seagypsy tribe of tomorrow!

Discussion in 'Designing, building, making and powering your life' started by zeyang, Feb 26, 2012.

  1. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Interested in self-sufficiency? Want to help build a community? Love the sea? Our collective, on an organic farm a few hours north of Oslo, is for anyone who wants to learn and work hard. We grow food, boats and ideas, so if you have a knowledge or interest in permaculture, farming, boat building, or sailing, come and help us create a home that is sustainable both on land AND out at sea!

    We are building a sailboat (the first of many), with the hope that when she sets sail (hopefully spring 2012) we will visit other eco-villages around the world, collecting knowledge and travelling in the most eco-friendly way possible. Anyone who helps will have the chance to join our crew, a tribe of floating sea-gypsies! We also need help on the farm, as we build up the infrastructure to form a stable base for our community. This project is relatively new; we began in 2009 so there is still a lot to be done. We live with two dogs, the farm cat and some (very) free-range chickens. We keep bees and make jam; this year we harvested our first crop of potatoes and planted next seasons raspberries. Eventually we hope to grow all our food. We want to create a place that will flourish as our boats start sailing, a place where crops, thoughts, adventures, and of course boats, can grow!

    Want more info?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Newsletter April 2012. .

    Dear Sea Gypsies,

    Still some time until we are ready to put the seeds into the soil. Its
    more or less -5 degrees C during night last weeks but daytime is above
    zero.

    The days have been spent welding and welding and when we havent done
    welding we have spent time troubleshoot welding machines. They have a
    tendency to break down unfortunately. So we bought 2 more big
    machines. We also got hold of another ton of lead. There seems to be
    no end to how much lead we need for ballast.

    Ahh yes. We got more chickens on the farm. one of our hens found out
    we need some easter chickens this year and she missed by 2 days. Not
    bad. The small one is a little shy so its hard to take a picture
    without getting attacked by the angry mother.

    Today it will be traditional easter-dinner here on the farm with
    people from near and far. Wish you all fair winds and following seas
    and hope you all have a peacful easter.

    picture from last weeks.

    a: our chickens are enjoying longer and warmer days.
    b: two more welding machines arrived on the farm.. It seems we cant
    get enough welding machines.
    c: Our easter chicken arrived 2 days before easter.


    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=135841&stc=1&d=1333813538
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=135851&stc=1&d=1333813545
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=135861&stc=1&d=1333813551
     
  3. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Newsletter May 2012.

    Dear Sea gypsies

    Spring has come to the farm! And then came summer, and then a few
    blustery days of fall, and finally last Friday and Saturday it snowed
    again. But that will be the last snow of the year, we hope - the mild
    weather seems to have returned, the trees are leafing out, the
    wildflowers are springing up around the river, the bees and the
    neighbors have come out of hibernation (again), and we are hard at
    work.

    This week we mixed a few tons of lovely manure compost into the soil
    of the north field, and planted eleven rows of potatoes - by hand -
    which should give us about 300 kilos of potatoes in the fall to feed
    hungry sea-gypsies all next winter. Next week we'll plant carrots and
    onions, and move some tender warm-weather starts to our new greenhouse
    - radishes, bok choi, spinach, parsley, beets, and sugar peas so tall,
    they might start climbing us if we don't get them out of the kitchen
    soon.

    Work on the boat has really picked up recently. We've been distracted
    with planting, and replumbing the bathroom, and building coldframes
    and the new greenhouse - but now that the potatoes are in the ground
    and the sea-gypsies are in the bath (phew), we are back in the
    boatshed all the time. Our resident woodworker is about to start work
    on a wooden dinghy from a traditional Norwegian design, just as soon
    as he gets the greenhouse finished. And we cast two tons of lead
    ballast, a very medieval process involving a wood-fired furnace in the
    yard. The boat will eventually carry five tons, so there is more
    casting to do as soon as the scrap yard has more lead for us.

    Inside the boat we're sealing off the keel with aluminum plates - the
    bow is nearly done, and then we can put in the last of the bow ribs.
    In the stern, we're wrestling with engine placement - it needs to be
    high enough to fit the cooling system and the primary diesel tank
    underneath, but low enough that the propeller clears the stern.
    Hmmmmm. Fortunately there's plenty to do while we're thinking about
    it - like put on the deck! The boat will start looking dramatically
    different very soon and we're all pretty excited.

    As always, there's room for more in our big sea-gypsy tribe - so if
    you like planting, weeding, shoveling, soldering, sawing, nailing,
    welding, grinding, sewing, cooking, drilling, knitting, routering,
    getting headbutted by chickens, watching 2-hour sunsets, measuring,
    cutting, re-measuring, thinking, re-re-measuring, making bread,
    reading sea books, eating waffles or knot-tying, drop us a line!


    Picture from last weeks.

    a: Sea gypsy girl making psykedelic chair-protection for the chairs.

    b: Shaping wood with router

    c: Potato-planting.

    d: lead melting girl finished melting 2 tonns in one week.


    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=161891&stc=1&d=1337015044
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=161901&stc=1&d=1337015051
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    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=161921&stc=1&d=1337015064
     
  4. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Newsletter June 2012.



    Dear Sea gypsies

    We're back to a full farm - the current crew of sea-gypsies hail from
    Norway, Germany (times two), Finland, France/Belgium, the UK and the
    US - it makes for lively, er, discussions in the evenings while we're
    watching Euro Cup matches.

    It also makes for rapid progress - in the last few weeks we've picked
    the entire farm clean of rocks, planted two fields in a mixture of
    cover crops (including phacelia, whose blue flowers are a favorite bee
    snack), built and painted a fence around the yard, re-plumbed the
    basement, fixed our fleet of bicycles, put in almost a kilometer of
    fence around the biggest field, dug up half the far field looking for
    a pipe leak, refinished a beautiful old door... and then, in our spare
    time, built a model for the boat's dinghy, biked all over the area,
    hiked down the river, spent a weekend in Oslo, foraged local plants
    for dinner, built a campfire spot overlooking the valley, installed a
    swing under the barn ramp, given each other mohawks, and baked about
    forty loaves of bread.

    And we're going to be parents! Kind of! One of our chickens has very
    motherly instincts, and she's been incubating thirteen eggs - some
    hers, some laid by the rest of our flock. We're expecting chicks in a
    week or so.

    All the farming hasn't left us much time for boatbuilding, but we
    still managed to make some progress this month: the keelbox has been
    welded shut in bow and stern, the last ribs are being bent to shape
    and welded in, and the calculations for the curve of the deck have
    begun. This week we'll finish the ribs and begin the wood patterns
    for the deck frames.

    We've been eating like royalty - everybody has learned to bake, and
    the spring plants are out in force, so we feast on nettles, milkweed,
    chaga mushrooms, dandelions, wood sorrel, and our own bread. After a
    long winter of turnips, potatoes and carrots, it's wonderful to have
    the green leaves that come with warm days, and the new dishes that
    come with new comrades.


    So, enjoy summer folks, and if you want to join us, just send us an
    email.

    Pictures from last weeks.

    a: Sea-gypsy girl busy planning the route with help of the world-map
    in background.

    b: Fence-banging guys!

    c: The Fencing-crew on the way to the field.

    d: Enjoy a short rest after hours of rockpicking in the field.

    e: Welding up the keelbox inside the boat.


    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=182061&stc=1&d=1339612761
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=182071&stc=1&d=1339612773
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    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=182101&stc=1&d=1339612800
     
  5. Pakanohida

    Pakanohida Junior Member

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    Do you have a facebook or website page so I can spread the info to some other people. I got a few friends that work on the "Lady Washington" aka the Enterprise on occasion. In fact, I think the "Lady" was just here this past May with the Hawaiian Chieftain.

    The Chieftain visits every May in Coos Bay, Oregon.
     
  6. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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  7. NJNative

    NJNative Junior Member

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    This has been an eventual dream of mine! I would love to be a sea gypsy, the main issue being a boat, and access to land that is adjacent to a body of water. Inspiring to see someone actually living it out!! I'm definitely looking forward to seeing how your tribe evolves and progresses. Good luck with all your endeavors, perhaps we can start a fleet or do a world tour in the future, when I get my local sea gypsy operation up and running. :)
     
  8. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    hi NjNative
    send us your email and we will send you more info.
    ze
     
  9. Pakanohida

    Pakanohida Junior Member

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    If you ever come across any low draft river boats plans for something akin to an Asian river boat, please let me know. I think I need to build one for emergency purposes here.

    Oh, and what are you doing to run the welder energy wise? Are you running in DC mode possibly using some kind of alternative energy?
     
  10. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    we dont have any solution for beeing selfsufficient on juice for the welding machine. they are way too powerful to run on anything except dieselgenerators.

    ze
     
  11. NJNative

    NJNative Junior Member

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    I think a wooden boat would be the most sustainably built vessel. Still interested though, I'll send you my info!
     
  12. Pakanohida

    Pakanohida Junior Member

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    Couldn't we dream up a algae tank which doesn't use much inputs to spin off some biodiesel for your generator? Or perhaps a methane digester?
     
  13. NJNative

    NJNative Junior Member

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    What about wood gasification, wind, geothermal, or any of the other plethora of clean energies out there?
     
  14. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Newsletter October 2012.

    Our big accomplishment this month was getting the winter bathroom
    constructed, insulated and piped - just in time for the first big
    freeze to hit the pipes in the summer bathroom. (Just in time to wash
    some dirty sea gypsies.) At the beginning of September, it was just a
    dark, drafty hole in the corner of the barn, and now it's a warm and
    bright room with heating, double-glazed windows, a fancy new
    shower... oh, and two couches, a worktable, a bookshelf and our sewing
    machine. We decided it was too big to just be a bathroom, so we made
    the other half into a winter living room. (If showering in the living
    room and hanging out in the bathroom sounds like a weird combination,
    just think of it as practice for living on the boat.)

    In boat news, the deck is on, the deckhouse is constructed and
    suspended precariously from the boatshed ceiling, and we've started on
    the sub-deck and the insulation inside the hull. There's a lot of
    infrastructure to go under the sub-deck - tanks for diesel and fresh
    water, a greywater holding tank under the shower, and 5.5 tons of lead
    ballast. Last week we cast another 600 kilograms of ballast in our
    evil-looking smoky wood-fired crucible - only 1.5 tons left to go!

    We've been doing a lot of farm work the last couple months - fall is
    always a busy season. We harvested those crops we planted back in May
    - onions, carrots, and 300 kilograms of potatoes! - plus lingonberries
    from the nearby forest which we made into jam. And getting ready for
    winter is a big job - cleaning up heaps of scrap wood, burning trash,
    raking hay, organizing the bee stuff, putting snow chains on the farm
    equipment, ghostriding the old tractor into the barn, and getting
    things stowed under roofs before they get lost under the snow until
    spring. We had our first big snowfall last night - about 15cm, and it
    looks like it's going to stick around. The official end of summer
    time on Saturday means the sun goes down around 4:30pm these days, but
    that just gives us more night hours to watch for northern lights.
    Tomorrow is Halloween, and we're going to celebrate by dressing up
    like boatbuilding farmworkers and stealing candy from passing
    children. Happy winter!



    Some pictures and movie from last month.


    This is our house band.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DuzEKsQNv2o&feature=player_embedded


    a: Beware of moose on deck!
    b: Harvesting the carrot crop.
    c: Making jam from local lingonberries.
    d: Fishing in the local lake.
    e: Fall bonfire with guitar.
    f: Making Swedish pea soup for lunch.


    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=252401&stc=1&d=1351626439
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=252411&stc=1&d=1351626445
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=252421&stc=1&d=1351626453
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    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=252451&stc=1&d=1351626523


    Love from
    Sailing the farm - a sea gypsy tribe of tomorrow.
     
  15. ollie.t.taylor

    ollie.t.taylor New Member

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    Hi Seagypsies, lovely to meet you :)

    Do you have an email I can write to to talk about how you started this, and things in general? This is one of my potential dreams one day, I would absolutely love to be able to find out more, and maybe visit one day? I'm pretty good at making rocket stoves/bread ovens out of scrap, along with bicycle generators :)

    Ollie
     
  16. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Newsletter December 2012.

    Dear All,

    First of all, Mucho Gracias for all contribution this year - This
    doesent goes just for those of you who have been flying, driving,
    peddaling, walking and swimming up here to lend a hand on the farm and
    the shipbuilding - but it goes also to you who have send support
    mails, commented on forums, asked to help sponsoring the project and
    mailed us. Without your support, we would never have come this far.

    We are now going into the last year of building the Seagypsy Boat #1
    and hopefully start sailing. Yes, i know some of you think she will
    sail only backwards, or even upside down, but sail she will.. .. :)

    Together we have come a long way taking into consideration that most
    of volunteers coming up here have never done any metalwork or even
    farmwork before, but they all share the same dream...

    To sum up for 2012. We have used more than 2 metric tonns of aluminium
    this year, welded hundreds and hundreds of meters of welding, consumed
    a few hundred kg of Argon gas, melted 5 tonns lead. Not to mention
    breathing way too much welding fumes and aluminium dust...

    On the farm, we have had lots and lots of volunteers who has been in
    charge of growing potatoes, sugar pees, carrots, berries and lots of
    other stuff. They have got new friends and met old ones from prior
    years.

    They have shared and learned, maybe eating too much porridge and
    waffles, laughed, cried, made love (tough I really worked hard here to
    keep those sneaky wwoffers in separate girls/guys barracks!!) :) Some
    have even taken step to marry! So in sum I think 2012 has been quite a
    good year.

    As we are nearing the end of this year (and not end of the world i
    hope!) I wish you all a peaceful 2013 with much joy and happiness for
    the coming year and we up on the farm really look forward to meet new
    and old volunteers both here and out on the seven seas.

    Fair winds and smooth sailing from

    Sailing the farm - A Sea gypsy tribe of tomorrow.
    Ze


    picture: Boatshed in winter night.

    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=289481&stc=1&d=1356891300
     
  17. Jalex

    Jalex Junior Member

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    Dear Sea Gypsy, how do I join your team?
     
  18. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Newsletter March 2013. .

    Dear Sea Gypsies,

    Spring is slowly coming our way, Its been maybe the coldest winter for
    as long as people can remember up here. Minus -30 for weeks out and
    weeks for january and february and even in march we have -20 degrees
    for many days. But we dont complain (at least loudly!) the shed was
    filled to the brink with firewood and during evening and weekends time
    have been spent reading about small pacific islands where the sun
    always shine... Guess where to boat is sailing!

    Last two months have been spent doing foundry work (melting
    aluminium). We are now making our own portholes and all small bits and
    pieces out of the all the scrap alloy we have floating around. Next
    would be to make a few dolphins for decoration :)

    Anyway, enjoy the early spring folks! .. and if you want to join our
    tribe please contact us!

    Pictures.

    a. making a sand-cast for a small porthole.
    b. Out enjoy the skiing in cold winter weather.
    c. a cake? Nope. Its called cores and used for foundry work! Its a
    miks of sand and linseed oil. Taste awful, but works good.
    d. welding small boxes and stuff together.
    e. Porthole production.

    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=348001&stc=1&d=1363531570
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=348011&stc=1&d=1363531577
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=348021&stc=1&d=1363531582
    https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=348031&stc=1&d=1363531588
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_y-Gh6_YI
     
  19. zeyang

    zeyang Junior Member

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    Newsletter April 2013.

    Dear Sea Gypsies,

    The potatoes are planted just a few days ago. Thats even earlier than
    last year. It a little risky since its still frostnights up here but
    they are protected under a bed of soil so hopefully they wont freeze.

    Summer is coming very slowly. Still no leafs on the trees, but the
    small yellow flowers - coltsfoot (tussilago farfara) are starting to
    show up along the roads. They are important pollen plants for the bees
    this early in season (together with salix)

    Sailing the farm have 3 nice girls now (irish,zchech,french). 2 guys
    (swedish/english) who have been here the first part of april.

    We have mostly been working on casting portholes for the boat which is
    pretty timeconsuming. It means making molds, melting aluminium and
    then shape the half-finished product in the lathe. The result looks
    really good i must say.

    Even if not even close to being foundrymen/girls or machinists we
    manage to get quite a professional result after some weeks of trial
    and error.

    Thats enough for now, If you fancy joining the seagypsy tribe - just
    drop us a line.

    Love from
    Sailing the farm


    Pictures.

    a. irish girl making sand-castles (sort of)
    b. inspecting the casting results.
    c. swedish sand-crab.
    d. unfinished and finished result. (with the help of a lathe)
    e. turning soil.


    a: https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=380071&stc=1&d=1367131663
    b: https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=380081&stc=1&d=1367131670
    c: https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=380091&stc=1&d=1367131675
    d: https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=380101&stc=1&d=1367131679
    e: https://weldingweb.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=380111&stc=1&d=1367131684
     

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