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MOVING TO ALASKA

 

HOW IT ALL STARTED

 

A couple years ago some friends tried to talk me into moving to Alaska with them. I turned them down because my property here is not worth that much and buying a house is out of the question. Then they offered me the land. I decided to put in an earnest effort to research moving to Alaska so I could show them why I could not do it.

 

As it turned out,I could not afford not to go. HOLD IT, Don't jump up and start packing. It is a great deal for me because I have an income that allows me to do so. If you move to Alaska make sure you have enough money to get back with. Being homeless at 40 below is not fun. I researched this for a year. Everything from the price of bread to how deep you have to burry water lines so they don't freeze. Since the temperature gets so low I spen't a lot of time researching cold climate construction to super efficient wood stoves to how to keep bears off the dinner table. YEP BEARS!.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I went to Alaska last year for the summer to check things out. I have lived in cold climates before so that isn't going to be a problem. One thing I did learn about living in cold climates is that no matter how big of a woose you are, they have clothes that will keep you warm. The only thing I found negative was the mosquitos. I am from South Florida and spen't some time in South America in the jungle. If there is one thing I know, it is mosquitoes. "OFF" IS YOUR FRIEND. beleive it or not, I never got a mosquito bite all summer. Usualy mosquitoes love me, but for some reason they would land on me but not bite. NOT ONCE. I got off easy and didn’t have to buy any repellent.

 

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WELLL, Since I couldn’t find a reason to not move, so I came back home to sell my house. At the moment I have a buyer but they have a VA LOAN GUARANTEE so it is going to be another month or two ............... or more LOL. That means I will be getting there in October or November to start building a house. Yeah it’s cold, but like I said, they have the clothes for it.

 

HOW MUCH SPACE DO I REALLY NEED?

During my research into cold weather construction, I found that small means easier to heat. I spent most of my life living on small sailboats. The smallest had 5 square feet of floor space in the cabin. The house I have now has 192 sq feet so I figured I would go up a bit to 250 sq feet. That just didn’t feel rite though. I got out my cad software and drew the things I wanted like sink, stove, bed etc. I even took into consideration if I get old and need a walker so I need room to navigate around the house with that. Then I figured in the luxuries like a desk, pantry, shower and toilet etc. Then I started to arrange them to find just how much room I actually needed. I came up with 12x16 with 12 inches of insulation leaving me with 10x14 on the inside (140 sq. ft.)

 

INSULATION

I mentioned 12 inches of insulation. By overdoing things with a little science, I found that upgrading everything was actually CHEAPER than going by code. for instance, up there I am using double wall construction.. They normally use a 2x6 stud and 6 inches of insulation. With double wall construction I am using 2 - 2x4‘s instead of a 2x6. @ - 2x4‘s cost about half of what a 2x6 costs. The same for insulation, I can go with 9 inches of batt plus another 3 inches for less than what 5 1/2 inches costs. I will be able to heat this place with a candle.

 

 

 

HEAT

For heat, I am going with a high efficiency ROCKET STOVE that gets the same amount of heat out of one cord as a regular stove gets with 5 cords of wood. The closest person to me burns 10 cords of wood a winter @200 a cord. I expect to burn a half a cord.

 

ELECTRICITY

I have been living on 12 volts most of my life so I decided to go with solar electric and a backup generator that runs on waste motor oil or wood gas.

 

WATER AND SEPTIC TANK

I am going to have a septic tank and a 150‘ well. To hell with crapping in the snow. The most common well pump is a 12 volt DC in the well pump got 600 to 1500 dollars. I haven’t decided yet what I am going to do for a pump but I am sort of leaning towards the pumps they use on an oil well to pump the oil with. Those are a little pricey, but by the time I scale it down to 1/2 or 3/4 inch, I can build one out of a hardware store. Now I got something I can pump by hand If need be. If I can power it by hand, I can power it with anything. Remember that engine on the generator that runs on wood or waste motor oil? Now I am not using my electric power.

 

Well, That is where I am at now. As soon as the buyer closes on this property I am out of here on the next plane to Alaska.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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