Favorite 3 Shop Hacks for Tools Out of Recycled Materials

My favorite ways to re-use common materials & scrap to make handy tools and shop aids. Disposable plastic drinking straws, caps to spray paint, and the stubs from zip ties. Let me know in the comments what handy shop tools you have created from scrap!

Continue reading Favorite 3 Shop Hacks for Tools Out of Recycled Materials

Solar Powered Golf Cart!?

Can you realistically run an electric 48 volt golf cart on solar panels? Well, we plan to find out!

I picked up a super cheap Yamaha electric golf cart (48 volt G19) to tinker with. First we need to get it fixed up and running. I came with two new 8 volt batteries, but will need 4 more in order to reach the required 48 volts the controller needs.

Continue reading Solar Powered Golf Cart!?

Groundhog Instant Pot Soup Recipe

We live in an area that is home to lots of groundhogs, also sometimes called woodchucks, whistle-pigs, or land-beavers. They can be a nuisance in the agriculture world because not only will they eat crops, but they also dig large tunnels for a burrow. Their burrow can be up to 50 feet long and usually have 2-5 entrances. These holes are generally cleverly hidden in tall grass right along road and paths, and big enough to injure people or animals that accidentally step into them or even damage equipment.

The result is these critters are often shot to control their population.
I had mentioned to one of the neighbors that we might try eating one sometime. I had read that they are pretty good.

Well the other day, the neighbor brought one up to the porch that he had just shot. I wasn’t going to waffle now, so Groundhog was what’s for dinner!

Continue reading Groundhog Instant Pot Soup Recipe

How to Cut a Timber Frame Mortise & Tenon – Part 1

We use a variety of tools to see what works best for cutting Mortise & Tenon joint into some old timber beams.

I have been working on a building a new base for an old pool table to put in our basement. The table was picked up for free because the original base had been ruined. We decided to cut some timber frame beams and build a new base for it with Mortise & Tenon joints.

Continue reading How to Cut a Timber Frame Mortise & Tenon – Part 1

How To Build A Solar Generator (3,000 Watt) – Part 1

Note: The original design of this solar generator used a 2,000 watt inverter. We have upgraded it to the new 3,000 watt model in the latest version along with several other improvements. Before you build the solar generator following our plans, be sure to watch the new intro and updates video below for the changes!

Introduction

I started looking into some of the largest portable solar generator units on the market because the idea of a completely silent generator that can run large power loads while never needing gasoline is a really cool concept. Whether you want to run a portable table saw, or go tailgating  / camping where the noise of a standard generator would be irritating, we will show you step-by-step how to build a weatherproof indoor/ outdoor solar generator!

Part 1 of our DIY video series on how to build a large solar generator. In this step we will be demonstrating the load ...

Solar Generator Build – Quick Links

Part 1 – Component Overview – (current step)
Part 2 – Component Testing

Part 3 – Mounting Internal & External Components
Part 4 – Wiring the Solar Generator
Part 5 – Plexiglass Cover & Design Updates
Part 6 – Solar Panel & Battery Bank Expansion

After seeing what was available, I found myself wanting to design my own solar generator for many reasons. For one it will be a lot cheaper. Second, I can add several features I wanted to add that are not in to the manufactured units. Finally, because it will be an enjoyable project!

By building your own, you will learn all about small off-grid solar setups, and also be able to fix the individual components if you ever have problems with it down the road. You can also easily modify the plans to build a permanent style off grid solar power setup for a cabin or camper.

Continue reading How To Build A Solar Generator (3,000 Watt) – Part 1

Bringing Home a CASE 360 Trencher Backhoe

A while back I picked up a new piece of machinery to help with many of our projects. It is not what I was originally looking for. I had been looking for a backhoe attachment for my Kubota tractor. The Kubota B20 was designed to be a TLB (Tractor / Loader / Backhoe) and has a frame integrated quick attach system designed for the matching BT650 backhoe unit. This is more solid and preferable to 3 point mounted units. The added weight due to this frame design makes them surprisingly capable and the backhoe units for them rarely come up for sale.

Continue reading Bringing Home a CASE 360 Trencher Backhoe

Loading Tractor Tires Quick & Easy

Loading your tractor tires with windshield washer fluid is an easy upgrade giving more traction, better hill stability, and additional weight / ballast. This is also helps with using a front end loader. I decided to use  windshield washer fluid since it is inexpensive, easy to obtain, will not freeze, and will not corrode the wheels like calcium and some of the other wheel ballast options.

Continue reading Loading Tractor Tires Quick & Easy

Repaired Kubota B20 Steering Box and Front Axle Leak

I have posted an update to the Kubota B20 restoration thread in the forum. This update includes details on the broken steering column and the front axle oil leak, both of which I discovered during the first run / engine break in. More photos and details in the forum post!

https://www.modernsurvivalists.com/discussion/topic/restoring-an-old-kubota-b20-compact-utility-tractor-and-putting-it-back-to-work/page/2/#post-7249

Next up is finishing up the wiring and then finally painting the hood & front loader.

Solar Generator – Final Version and Final Design Updates

The finished large solar generator featured in our DIY How To Build a Solar Generator series. If you are getting ready to follow our video tutorial and build your own solar generator, make sure you watch this video first so you know about the design updates!

In the video below we go over the solar generator features, solar panel kit specs, and our DIY battery bank expansion units. In addition, we show how to upgrade / improve several aspects of the original design including a higher power AC power inverter (3,000 watt continuous, 6,000 watt peak), fully waterproof external switches, mounting improvements, and a better way to store accessories inside the solar generator main case.

Continue reading Solar Generator – Final Version and Final Design Updates