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25288 CR 2, Shevlin, Minnesota, US
Climate zone:
Cold Arid

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Shevlin, US

Aleja Danelle Beulah Collier Faye Davis Hazel Tsai Ramirez Epling

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The Harn

Project: Elsweyr

Posted by Jami G4 over 7 years ago

A review of the progress on building a Living Space that includes a Rocket Mass Heater and Water Catchment System.

Our original plan was to build a pole barn for a small apartment, workshop and storage while we later built a cabin for living - possibly a SIP or cordwood building.  We built a 20' x 30' living space in the east end of the pole barn and called it The Harn (House-Barn... H-arn... Harn).  In the end, we decided against a second structure for our home and just expanded the Harn living space to 30' x 36' with an addition for a porch and cistern room.

This project has been completed in many small stages as we originally were living 14 hours from the property.  We installed a culvert in 2008 to be able to access the property with a vehicle.  In 2009, we put in a road to the build area.  This road goes along the south end of a wetlands and then curves north to the center of the property. We also put up the pole barn (timber frame with steel roof/siding) and began the process of little by little making this into our new home.  In 2011, an insulated concrete floor was poured and the temporary living quarters began being framed.  In 2012, building continued and we worked on clearing trees for a cabin space.  In 2013, Dan spent 3 months in two 6-week stints doing major build work which included an expansion of the Harn living quarters as we'd decided the cabin space would be better used as garden/greenhouse space.  Two major steps forward were the build of our Rocket Mass Heater core and installation of electricity.  In 2014, we continued with the living quarters development and made the move from Indiana to Minnesota to be closer to the property.  Our son was in college and we sold the Indiana home to create a nest egg for our transition from the rat race.  In 2015, we completed the installation of our Rocket Mass Heater and were able now to generate heat in the living space.  In 2016, we continued detailing the living space and adding mass to the Rocket Mass Heater while also installing a water catchment and storage system. Late in the year, I made the transition to full-time living at the Homestead.  So far I have been able to keep the place warm, though much of our heat is going up the chimney until we get our mass fully in place.  I'm currently living without indoor plumbing but hope to have that installed soon.

You can see videos at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZcwdxIbsSbKuDKyAQuuG6g 

Comments (2)

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Richard Bogdanowicz
Richard Bogdanowicz : Sounds like your doing a great job. I just subscribed to your youtube channel. I'm sure you will be warm once you get the mass on your rocket stove. Keep it fed as late as possible and then wake up early to feed it. You will probably be warm enough then!
Posted over 7 years ago

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Jami G4
Jami G4 : Thanks, Richard. I'm trying to not burn twice a day so as to stretch the seasoned wood we have. But some days I have to with these sub-zero days. Next year will be better! Hope to post some more videos soon. Sounds like you are doing well. Would love to see more details on your project on how you do what you do. Take care!
Posted over 7 years ago

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