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Survivalism in Texas / How to Build a Brick Stove

 If you've been watching the news lately coming out of Texas you have conclude the following:

#1. Texans almost never see snow. The blizzard has basically paralyzed them because they don't know what to do with the stuff.

#2. Texans don't own snow tires. Hence all the car accidents.

#3. Texans are not used to heating their homes using a fireplace, wood stove, oil furnace, wood furnace, or any other means.

#4. Texans are not used to being without electricity.

#5. The electrical grid in Texas was a giant catastrophe waiting to happen because nobody was maintaining it.

#6. The coal, gas and nuclear power generators are all failing in Texas because nobody thought to winterize their systems like they do in other states.

#7. Very few people in Texas know how to build a fire that doesn't involve burning their house down.

So let's tackle that last part today.

How to Build a Brick Stove or Fireplace

#1. Find or buy some bricks. Old bricks or new. Doesn't matter.

#2. Make some mortar / cement. You can mix it in a bucket if your have to. Avoid touching the stuff with your bare skin.

#3. Based on the number of bricks you have decide on a design that makes sense and makes an efficient use of your bricks. You may need to calculate how many bricks you need for each part of the stove or chimney.

#4. Build your stove or chimney close to a window through which you can put pipes to the exterior of your home so that the smoke has somewhere to go. Alternatively you may need to renovate / build a chimney along with your fireplace.

#5. Build it!

  • Apply the mortar to one end of each brick evenly before adding it to the brick beside it.
  • Add a layer of mortar each time you finish one layer of bricks.
  • Remember that corner bricks need to have the mortar added to part of the side of the brick, not the end.
  • If building a stove remember to find something that makes a suitable door.
  • If building a fireplace then some people will want some kind of steel mesh or something similar to avoid sparks from igniting things near the fireplace.
  • You may need to build some kind of stonework or brickwork near or around the fireplace for safety reasons.

Building a stove or fireplace isn't much more complicated than building a set of Lego blocks. It isn't really that hard to build, it just takes time and effort. If you can build a brick BBQ in your backyard then you can build a fireplace or a stove in your home. The biggest difference is that you need a pipe or a chimney to get rid of the smoke.




CrossbowCanada.com

 I found a new company in Canada that makes and sells crossbows:

https://www.crossbowcanada.com

I was previously only aware of Excalibur, which is now unfortunately owned by Bowtech (an American company) which bought out the smaller Canadian crossbow manufacturer a few years ago.

And while I am a big fan of Excalibur, my preference would be to buy things from Canadian companies whenever possible (especially companies owned by Canadians).

What I especially like about the CrossbowCanada models is the wood stocks on Jaguar model.


And this is an issue for me. A lot of modern crossbows are quite ugly. But the Jaguar is quite beautiful and classical. Like a beautifully carved wooden staircase.

There are certain elements of crossbow design which are utilitarian, but there are other aspects which can be quite beautiful when a company decides to put in the effort.

Eg. Imagine the crossbow stock above, but switch out the type of wood used for mahogany, black walnut or zebra wood.

Wouldn't that be beautiful?

And if the owner later decides to buy a different crossbow and sell their old crossbow, having one that is beautiful also increases the resale value - and gives the company more prestige.

Making a Horsebow using bamboo and a coat hanger

Not my video, but I did particularly enjoy watching this video because it showed all the steps needing for making a horsebow using bamboo, glue, a coat hanger and a few other things.

Definitely helps to have a sander, a band saw and various other tools too. It isn't a very heavy poundage bow, but it looks nice and shoots well.



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