Multi purpose homestead building

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    • #91191

        Just finishing up with a multi purpose building on the homestead.

        Long story but about a hundred years ago when building originally I ended up with a load of concrete minus a needed concrete pump (guy didn’t show). So I poured a really nice thick 12×12′ slab in the side yard and left it.

        Flash forward 17 years we did something more permanent with that area, building a 12×14 open air building there. Put a 4/12 pitch roof on it and shingled it. The slab was in the perfect position to get us sun on panels first thing in the a.m. and late afternoon. We’ve been running 3,120 watts in solar for about 6 years now, but we will be adding about another 1KW that will crank up first thing in the a.m. with the morning sun and another KW on the other side of the roof catching the last of the afternoon sun. All of our original panels face due south per common solar installation mantras. These 2KW will face almost due east and almost due west. However the roof gets sun the entire day as well.

        So I’ve completed running #6 wire from that building to where our power system and battery bank is located and will be putting the panels up soon.

        We have a jury rigged “butchering” area now but it doesn’t really serve our purposes. So that is one of the main reasons for this new building.

        Inside the building, I doubled up on the girders on the ends and on the center of the roof. On the double girders in the center, I’ve mounted a 2,000 lb. ATV winch running and a 12v lightbar like used on off road vehicles. These are powered by a 12v battery and recharged via a small 20w solar panel and Morningstar 6amp controller.

        Purchased a stainless steel table to butcher on, like used in restaurants. Ran water to the building and installed a large laundry type sink, plumbed the drain to some nearby trees for the gray water.

        So now when we come in with a deer, we can back a vehicle up right to the building, use the winch to hoist it up in the air while it’s dressed and skinned, then lower it down right onto the stainless steel table to cut up. Running water right next to it will be handy for washing and cleaning.

        The building is right next to one of the garden areas and close to one of the small orchards, so we can initially clean and process fruits and veg there also.

        During the off season, we will butcher our rabbits and chickens there as well as just having a covered outside area to cook out and have a fire in.

        Meeting hall/butchering area/summer kitchen/BBQ area/power producing area. Going to see if I can find some other uses for it also.

      • #91192
        Brian from Georgia

          That is awesome, Robert. Waiting on the smokehouse addition report :yes: You have to do something with those hogs.

        • #91193
          Joe (G.W.N.S.)

            Nice addition!

          • #91194

              That is awesome, Robert. Waiting on the smokehouse addition report :yes: You have to do something with those hogs.


            • #91195

                I’ll try to get some better pics.

                It’s getting cooler here finally so I’m sure we will be getting out hunting soon. Butchering everything here, we tend to try to wait till it’s cold enough outside that we don’t have to process at break nick speeds.

                Experience is the only test to see how these plans actually do work out. As with any plan I’m sure their will be some modifications mid-stream :)

              • #91196

                  Ran 1/2 inch flexible black pipe on the roof under the solar panels. It produces a good amount of hot water for an outside shower and provides hot water to the sink now also.

                  I’ll see if I can load the pics. First pic is the base of the shower. I poured a small concrete pad and used some slate tiles we had left over from another project. The other end of the pad will hold a water tank to catch rain water from the roof.

                  The other pic is the black pipe coming off the roof and tee’ing off to go to the shower one direction and to go to the sink the other direction.

                  I think I will add a hose bib somewhere in that section. This will allow us to heat water from another source in winter time and pump it to the shower/sink. A clean metal 55 gal drum set up blocks with a fire under it would suffice. We regularly burn some of our trash and there is a 12×20 wood shed chock full 5 feet from this location so fuel for a drum water heater wouldn’t be a problem.

                  Had thought about trying to find an old claw foot type metal bathtub and using that. Small fire right under it to heat water. It would be harder to regulate the heat however. With the potential of kids around, I’d want to avoid any burns.

                • #91197

                    Wow, that’s cool stuff!

                    19D20 Cavalry Scout 3d ACR Desert Shield/Storm
                    Mountain Biker

                  • #91198

                      Oh and it worked out well for butchering last year also. Hopefully the pic will load- First is butchering. Second is some of the panels

                    • #91199

                        Awesome! :good:

                      • #91200

                          Thanks for sharing. Taking notes :mail:

                        • #91201

                            Really nice setup. My daughters used to skin our deer. #2 would freak out if a tick got on her and that was it for the day. #3 actually guided with me, on her own, and could gut a deer in about 5 minutes. The hunters had to help her load it though.

                            Set up like yours would have been the cat’s meow.

                          • #91202

                              I just got sick of jury rigging folding tables and grunting to lift deer up while my wife and son frantically tied the legs to elevated beams, etc.

                              We have a friend that hunts every year in some competition with his son and a couple friends as to who can shoot a deer closest to the eyeball (serious story). Anywhoo, the guy doesn’t even like venison.

                              So long story short- we get them free. But it’s often a 11pm call and then a half hour trip to get them. One of the ones right before I got everything set up was on a night it was about 35 degrees. We butchered that deer via headlights and 18v Dewalt tool lights while shivering.

                              After that I said fudge it…

                              Now we can have a fire going in the metal fire pit deal, water running right there, a hoist to get the damn thing up without grunting, a metal table that cleans up easier than a plastic folding table and options for both 110v and 12v lighting.

                              We’ve been butchering at our retreat for damn near 20 years now. This is a perfect example of how we as survivalists tend to stick with the “good enough” way of doing something, while it sucks. The “good enough” way was 35 degrees, a garden hose and headlights from the truck.

                              Sometimes improving processes like these that you do somewhat regularly, truly helps in labor efficiency.

                              Then when you can scheme out multiple uses for a small project like this, it becomes all the more worthwhile.

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