Archive for October, 2012

power suprise

Need a power supply for your hobby electronics projects? You can find your answer in a former pack of cancer sticks; they’re just the right size to hold AA batteries! Pad things out with aluminum foil, and add some tension to keep good contact, and you’re in business¬†Shocking, amirite?

A power supply built from trash.

A battery pack built from trash.


what to do with our waste wood?

LumShop generates a lot of scrap wood. What can we do with it? Here’s an idea: turn it into useful heating and cooking with a small woodgasifier stove!

A woodgas stove and the meal it cooked.

A woodgas stove and the meal it cooked.

From right to left, there is the stove, built from upcycled steel food cans. Beside that is the tasty meal and the cup of tea which the nutty chemist brewed up on a single handful of scrap. Next, our cup overfloweth with charcoal generated by the stove. You can burn it, but this mugful is getting crushed up and added to the compost with the cooking waste. This actually buries carbon, so you can warm your baked beans without warming the globe.

It has its limitations, of course – it produces carbon monoxide and smoke, and can’t be used indoors without ventilation. It’s a little ricketty and comes apart at inconvenient times. But for a few dollars and an hour of work, it’s been incredibly useful. Also, although this model is small,¬†the technology scales well. Here’s a great example from some other makers: