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Refridgeration when SHTF

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posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 02:38 AM
So a friend of mine introduces me to a series of books by S.M. Stirling. Part of the "Change" series (If you've read them you know what I mean) At any rate, this guy starts spewing out ideas on how to survive without electricity. In one of the books he talks about creating refrigeration from the reversal of a Heat Engine.

I had never heard of this so I wanted to know if it was fact or fiction. I Googled said engine and I'll be damned if it isn't real.

Here's some links on the topic

Wikipedia - Heat Engine

Basically using this process in reverse, where you supply the "work" you can cool things down. The "work" could be supplied by ANY old fashioned windmill (doesn't have to produce electricity to produce work) which can save time and money. As we all know, the electricity producing windmills are quite expensive and not readily available...especially in a SHTF scenario.

Here is a link on the Stirling Cooler (Not sure if there is any correlation to the author, but I doubt it.)

Wikipedia - Stirling Cryocooler

This might help some of us keep our food longer if electricity isn't readily available. Or even if it is, you could use this process and save on your off grid power consumption. The uses seem to be nearly unlimited.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 03:10 AM
For those who have a well, or a well house, that will help keep things cool. My mother told me how her parents and grandparents kept things cool. Milk was kept in the the well.
I would suggest a root cellar, dug deep and and lined with cinder blocks. If you can build it in total shade, so much the better. The temps should stay in the low forties, even in the summer. This has the added benefit of serving as a storm cellar if you live in an area where tornadoes are prevelent.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 03:19 AM
reply to post by midnightbrigade

Thanks for the thread midnight.. I actually hope more People look at it, and put in their handed down to cents; as this is actually fairly important once thought about.

I would recommend a root cellar; btw.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 03:21 AM
Yea, my grandparents told me all about the root cellars. Its an awesome idea. In my area of the beautiful state of Oklahoma, we can't do those too often cause of the high water table. If I were to dig about 3 feet down, I start hitting water.

Awesome for wells, BAAAAD for cellars
That's kind of what prompted me to post this heat engine idea. It would help us out a lot.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 03:23 AM
reply to post by sanchoearlyjones

Thanks for the compliment my friend. That's one of the drawbacks of working nights, seems not too many folks are on when I make a thread and it gets worked out of rotation fairly quickly. I hope others get to see it and throw in their own ideas on cooling/food preservation without electricity.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 03:26 AM
reply to post by midnightbrigade

S & F.

My grandparents used to have a pantry with cooling vents as a fridge.

It didn't always work though because I found maggots in my meal a few times - ugh!!! And how come we weren't poisoned?

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 03:45 AM
reply to post by spellbound

Maggots are surprisingly sterile depending on what they eat, or once cooked. They're full of protein and aren't bad long as they've been jamming on plants. Or at least that's what that idiot Bear Grylls tells me

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 03:50 AM
reply to post by midnightbrigade

UGH, I have to SCREAM - maggots?????

That is too horrible.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 04:01 AM
reply to post by spellbound

Hey, sewer rat may taste like pumpkin pie, but I'll never know cause I wont eat the nasty mo fo's

I'll leave it to the experts like Bear

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 04:11 AM
reply to post by midnightbrigade
I seem to remember something about a creek running through the wellhouse to keep things cool. I know how hot it can get in Oklahoma(I live in Arkansas.) but if an "artifical creek" coult be created, with a collecting pond at the end, could refrigeration be accomplished? The pond could serve as a resevior for water, and could be stocked with fish. providing an extra source of protien.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 04:27 AM
reply to post by kettlebellysmith

That's not a bad idea at all, and if it was deep enough it would probably get stuff quite cool. The only problem that I could see is that the water would either have to be diverted from an existing creek, or be spring fed.

Also, you would want to make sure your pond it large and deep. Don't need mosquito's taking up shop in your back yard. We grow them big enough here to carry off small children. Best to keep them at a distance

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 04:36 AM
reply to post by midnightbrigade

No Frets....
People anywhere only see what they want too
People better start paying attention to this kind of thing. I understand Your offering things You've found, and that many more can be found, or shared..

I kinda hope the same thing for threads; that is for them to be added to.

There are many of us now offering the sparks to incite thought.

Where I'm at currently is a root cellar that I dug/built. I've thought seriously about adding some kind of cooling system from the mountain stream on the prop., but haven't yet.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 04:57 AM
reply to post by sanchoearlyjones

Sancho, if you've got a mountain stream you are in it good. You can look everywhere on the net and find out how to build aquaducts. That's a phenomenal way to keep things on your property cool. Cool running water can be piped around the home, barn, root celler, whatever and using the evaporative cooler effect, you can live quite comfortably even on the hottest summer days

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 05:38 AM
This may sound stupid but what exactly do you plan on keeping in your fridge? You won't be able to get anything from shops remember.

Most fruit and vege can be kept in cool cellars etc sometimes you have to separate with newspaper etc

There are some good sites on stoing food without the need of refridgeration - just search on storing fruit or vege.

Meats can be cured/ salted etc

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 05:49 AM
reply to post by johnb

You are absolutely right, there are other ways of preserving foods that are just as effective. Almost all of them though involve keeping things cool, and if you read a few posts up I can't build a root cellar in my area of Oklahoma. That's why alternative cooling methods were appealing to me. During the summer it gets hot and humid enough to melt iron on the sidewalk
And that's just in MAY!

Good question and thanks for asking

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 06:08 AM
Hi MB! I've given this some thought as well and even started a thread on Preserving Foods.

Cool idea (ooh i made a funny) and thanks for sharing it with us. S&F

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 06:41 AM
reply to post by whitewave

Actually it was one of your posts I was reading here in the survival forum about edible plants that made me remember what I had read in that authors book.

My mind works in a 6 degrees to Kevin Bacon kind of way, and with all the knowledge you were dropping about edible plants you reminded me of one of the characters. Then that got me thinking about their situation, then that got me thinking about the heat engine being described, and that led me to remember that I wanted to look up if it was fact or fiction. Being that it was real, I figured I'd drop it on ATS for us survival folks.

Thanks for the inspiration!

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 06:55 AM
Hey MB
If....thats a big IF, you can stay in one area, you could use my redkneck electricity...
I live just east of you and have similar issues.
all you need is an old car altornater, a battery, and an inverter..
Attach a fan blade off an old house fan 20" box fan or cieling fan to the center o0f the altornater
That will charge your battery
The inverter will give you 110 volts

This will not produce enough to run this 24/7 but I run my PC and TV off of a sytem like this.

I use a 1500 watt inverter $150 and even use this in my home to get off the grid.

One inverter and battery per room and you can get 6-10 hours of power depending on how hard you draw off it...

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 06:57 AM
reply to post by midnightbrigade
i live in the mountains on the edge of the cahutta wilderness and we have spring water. we have put milk and water in the spring to keep it cool when the power goes out (which it does quite frequently).

i do appreciate the the link regarding how we can refrigerate in case we have no electricity. we are so used to being w/out power for hours at a time at least twice monthly.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 07:14 AM
Thanks for the replys guys. Doc, I love redneck ingenuity. People think we ARE slow because we TALK slow, but they just don't get it.

Mussle, Your lucky to have that stream... I'm looking for land right now that could have running water, but its all so damn high priced.

Keep the good ideas comin guys!

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