Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Doing it Old School

As we begin our journey to self sufficiency we need to take a moment to give thanks, thanks for what we have, thanks for the people we have in our lives, the knowledge we have available to us, and last but not least, the tools we have.

Try to imagine life as it was one hundred years ago.  The simple act of making supper would have been a chore.  You would not simply jump into your car to go to the local A&P to pick up a frozen dinner.  You would have had to thought about what you were going to have, found the ingredients, and actually put them all together.  You would not have a natural gas or electric range to cook them in but would have to cut wood for the fire.  The simple act of making supper is no longer a simple act.  It would consume most of an afternoon.

Just imagine how yard work would have been.  Today we have powered mowers, edgers, trimmers, tillers, and everything in between.  Some of these things the hardest part is starting them.  Can you even begin to imagine how our forefathers did it?  I bet it was a little harder, took a little longer, and involved alot more sweat.
My wife and I stopped in at a local flea market some time back.  I found lots of neat stuff I could not do without. 

The first item I found is this old time reel mower.  It has a date from the late 1880's stamped on it and it is in amazing condition.  The wheels are metal with a rubber ring around and other than the blades it is all wood.  It is in amazing condition and after a little lube it worked well enough to cut the grass in our front yard.  About the only downfall it has is it does not mulch.

This item is some type of roto tiller.  It has a metal drum with cut outs that look like teeth and on the rear it has three tines which have been welded together.  I have never seen anything like this but the price was right and it is in excellent condition so I had to have it.  While it can not keep up with my new rear tine roto tiller it is a neat artifact from our past.

Now that I can mow the grass and till the garden with human power alone I had to have something for the weeds.  You guessed it, a hand held human powered weed wacker!  No need to buy that expensive line and no fossil fuels required. 

After the yard work is done we can head to the workshop for a little wood working.  Forget those expensive power saws we have something better.  You do not have to worry about the motor burning up or ruining your hearing from those loud saws.  It will cut as long and as fast as you can move your arm.

While we are at it, how about a way to get that lumber..

I know it is not the best picture but I had to throw this in here.  It is an old two man saw.  You know like the one your grandpa's dad used.  Other than the rust and a broken handle with a little tlc this thing should work like a charm. 

After looking at these items and imagining the time and effort that those before us used to accomplish simple tasks I am more thankful that technology has made alot of these chores easier.  The best part is I spent about $50 for all of these items!

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