Up-cycling from Drier to Washer Tub Wood Burner

I’ve stored an old washing machine at the back of the house for years. Today I decided to have a look at it and see what to do with it. It got damaged in a flood and was full of gravel and mud – so basically a write-off. But thanks to to some inspiration from some surfer buddies I met this year (they had a wash drum burner), I though it would make a nice little wood burner. A couple of crow bars and some socket wrenches were all I needed.

Two hours later said machine was transformed to a pile of useful bits and a pile of junk.

The useful bits included two drums , a glass bowl ( from the front door) and some nice weights – one concrete and one cast iron.


The inner drum was perfect – it even ended up with it’s own special base (the drive wheel)


It is significantly smaller than its predecessor (the drier drum) and has significantly more holes in it, making it burn better, give out more heat and look prettier!

The end-effect is superb!

Link to previous burner posts – previous-burner

I’ll post a blog on the tripod separately.

Well Prepared for Winter – A Lot of Wood In-front of the House

In German, ‘A Lot of Wood Stacked In-front of the House’ can have a whole different meaning! But it is also traditionally a sign of being well prepared for winter in the Black Forest.

Old habits die hard – so I have been stacking wood in-front, behind and at the sides of the house. Two cubic metres (loose) worth.

It was a couple of hours of good solid work: I’m pleased with the results. That should keep us nice and toasted over the winter!



Ramsons, Ramsons Everywhere

We had to pop down to the area around Swansea for a quick visit. The place was carpeted with wild garlic. Walking though the woods it even smelt like you were immersed in a garlic scent bath. The ramson buds were particularly tasty. Here I fried them with our breakfast of ham and eggs – absolutely delicious!

Machete Handle Replacement


Last summer we had a few great garden bonfires. On one occasion one of my son’s friends was chopping some branches for the fire and left the machete on the ground next to the branches.

When it was dark I just picked up the branches and tossed them onto the fire. The next day I was searching around for my machete and couldn’t find it anywhere. I even looked in the fire, but couldn’t see it first time. It was only when I raked through the ashes that I found my (once) lovely machete destroyed! I wanted to put a decent handle back on it – so came up with the idea of using an axe handle – which worked brilliantly.

The picture below shows the end result:


and here’s a video of what I did:

Camping Skillet- Adding a Longer Handle

I wanted to use a nice cast iron frying pan/ skillet for my canoeing and Urban Craft open fire cooking. I ended up using a relatively expensive, redundant frying pan, but the handle was too short – so I added an extension handle. This was made from an old piece of satellite/ tv aerial support pipe. This pipe is hollow – so I can insert a pole to give a really long extension if required.

Video footage for this: