Sunday, May 20, 2012

Hand Powdered Washing Machine

I know I have been talking about it for a while now so I finally got around to starting my Old Fashioned Solar Laundry Room with a Modern Day Redneck Twist.

(By the way, how do you like my shade tree shop)
First off is building the Washing Machine. I picked up two 30 gallon plastic drums from a buddy of mine and cut them in half  3" above center.
Then I built a stand to hold both barrels out of scavenged 2X4's and placed the wringer right in the middle between the two.

The side to the right of the wringer will be the wash tub and the left side is the rinse side.
The wringer has fins so whatever way you crank it the water will run back into that tub.

I did as much as I could with wood before heading over to my dad's metal shop to fabricate the pieces that will hold the lever and the plungers all together. All from scavenged material.    
After it was most of the way assembled it was time to eat so I will finish it another day.
The plungers will hang from the Black Smith made "U" brackets that are attached to the handle. They will hang from All-thread and the plungers will be made from stacks of different diameters of wood about 6" thick, you will just have to see it when it's done. It's pictured in my head and hard to explain.

I still need to install the drains and set it in place. The water source will be from the rainwater storage units which is pumped through the Solar Bath house so I can have hot water on demand.

Speaking of which, I need a shower. Y'all have a great week.

47 comments:

  1. Very interesting. I like it a lot, BUT I will have to work on a type that can be used indoors during the great MN Arctic winter blasts of Jan. & Feb.

    Thanks for the update and idea. No sleep tonight for me. lol.

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    1. Thanks Rob. Yea, I don't have the room inside for it that is for sure. It can be built as a one barrel unit and the soaping area is also the rinse area but you would be wasting more water that way if you had to do more than one load.
      A rinse bucket off to the side would even work. The three inches above center is to keep the water from splashing out as bad and you could make a cover for it for even better splash control.

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    2. to make it smaller why you couldn't you use just the bottoms of the barrels instead of the sideways?

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    3. You could Anony, If your building it, you can make it any shape or size you want. This design meets my application. For others, the ends might be big enough. The plungers would have to smaller or just one big one on one side.
      The old way was using wash tubs so barrel ends would be just right if that is what you are wanting.

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    1. Oh K, you are going to make me blush.
      I just took about 100 other ideas and made my own.
      Thanks for the comment.

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  3. Have been meaning to ask about your wringer.

    "Wringer" is on my Craigs lists of items that I look for each week, along w/about 10 other items (grain mill, mason jars, concrete blocks, dehydrator, etc.) - lol. Love it, but I bet Mrs. MDR isn't too excited.

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    1. DFW, I got tired of tripping over it to be honest.
      I finally collected all the parts to this project so it was time to begin.
      Graigs list is great but I never see this kind of stuff on there. I found the wringer, the scrub board, straight razors and all that stuff at consignment antique shops. The one I go to always works a better deal on the stuff than he has listed.

      She told me when I was building it to build it to my height, so I am guessing that was a hint.

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  4. You know that I can't wait to see this bad boy in action!! I needed you to do this post a couple of months ago:)

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    1. I can't wait either MM. It has been in my mind for six months now.
      Ya know I thought about commenting about it on your blog but y'all were trying to get the electric one to work and thought you would not want to wash all those clothes by hand. Plus I still had a couple of details to work out.
      Thanks for stopping by.

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  5. MDR, Nice post, can't wait to see it totally complete and in action.

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    1. Me too Sandy. It usually takes several months from time of thought to actually using that thought. The building of the idea is quick and easy but working out all the details on paper and in my head takes the longest. I wont start a project unless it is all worked out and the way I like it. Then you have the field design changes to go along with it.
      I know, It's just a washer right? Yes, but it will be the one I want.
      Thanks for the comment.

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  6. This is awesome. I've been thinking about something like this for a while but haven't had the opportunity to move forward with it. When I do, I'm totally going to copy yours. This is brilliant. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks TF, wait until I work out the bugs before you do yours. I am sure the design will need some kind of tweaking before it is all said and done.
      I might end up installing springs to help with the work so all it takes is finger power.
      I might end up having to put in quick release pins for the plunger unit to be moved out of the way for easier access to the clothes and wringer but not sure yet. Time will tell.

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  7. Very nice! I cold do with one of those please :)

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    1. Thanks Dani, I would love to hand deliver you one of these or even come down there and build it for you.

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  8. Good Day Mate, What a brilliant idea for a washtub/rinse tub. We were going to use the old bathtub and a dozen kids walking over it Lol. But this is great. Rinse tube becomes overnight soak tub, not wasting any water either.

    You mention a few posts back if life might be getting in the way of prepping ATM ... I would say maybe yes, we have all come to a point where we think we got it now, but there is so much to learn still, we are far from ready. When it hits, we will all be scrambling to get to our hideouts far from the city. In our case it's 6hr drive with animals,food and what ever we can get there. We are moving to slowly for my liking, to much to do and not enough time.

    I keep plugging at it and my Dear husband, well he does not see it the urgency ATM. Nice to meet you, hope you don't mind me hanging around for a while.

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    1. Thanks for the comment Rina,
      The water from these tubs will be drained into buckets and used on the fruit trees. We use a homemade soap so I think it will be okay for them.

      I think there will always be to much to do and we will never have the time to do it in. This is of course one of the biggest hurdles to over come.
      This is the way I look at it. No, I do not have the time to dedicate to prepping, nor do I have the money. If I was a stay at home millionaire than maybe.
      If I was to keep that mind set and sit on the couch until I had the time and money, it would never get done.
      I look back now at where I was two years ago and think that there is no way I could ever get to where I am at today if I would have waited.
      Even pennies in a jar add up over time if you keep adding to them.
      My anxiety takes over sometimes and I feel overwhelmed with all that still needs to be done but I just go to my happy place in my head, calm down and do what I can.

      It is so very nice to meet you too. Please hang around as long as you like.
      I will give you a nice welcome post either today or tomorrow and if you need anything please let me know. My email is on the right side of the blog.
      Thanks again for stopping by.

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    2. MDR borax is a weed killer would not put it on trees or garden the boron in it will kill them

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  9. Great post, I have been talking about doing this for some time too but like others, have not done it yet LOL. I want to do one that is powered by a bike, but then your design looks easier!

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    1. PTRADAT, Thanks for the comment.
      I looked at those bike powered ones for a long time and finally decided I wanted one of my own from a design of my own. A bike powered one is great if that is what you are going for but it does not match the look and the old time feel you get here at the Mini Farm. I wanted to go Old School with a modern twist.

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    2. LOL understood but the bike might encourage the kiddos to actually do the laundry...I got to get creative in the whole delegation area ha ha!

      I love your design though it does have that great old time feel to it!

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    3. Everyone in the house is responsible for their own laundry. That is the problem, the washer in the house is never free for me to use. I have to draw a number and get in line to use it.
      This hand machine I am sure will be freed up most of the time so I can get all mine done in one shot.

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  10. MDR, you are so creative! You keep out-doing yourself and it's just amazing!!! Great job on the washer. When you're finished I bet it will work better than my current washer and dryer!

    Blessings,
    Red

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    1. Thanks for the compliment Red Woman.
      If I could have my way I would rather have had the money to buy enough solar cells to power the washer I have instead of building one you have to use by hand, but if this one breaks I can repair it.
      Thanks for stopping by Red.

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  11. Pretty neat, how about asking the little lady to do the wash for a week with it and let us know how it works out for ya'.

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  12. Duke I would rather fight a bumble bee nest than do that. If she wants to use it she can but it is mainly for me.

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  13. what to say i praise of this blog, which contains a lot of amazing information as well as the thoughtful writes.
    Precision punch

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  14. Can't wait to see the rest of the setup MDR! Loving it already!

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    1. Thanks Stephanie. If everything goes right I will have it done and the first load in it this weekend.

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  15. How interesting. I will definitely be watching for more on this.

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    1. Thanks Becky, I will update when time allows.

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  16. I really love the idea of this washing machine. It looks great. Good luck with the rest of it!

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    1. I should have it done this weekend Stephen. Thank you.

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  18. buddy - i can't wait for more updates and pics! this is so freakin' awesome! loveit, love it, love it. and jambaloney is groaning. good job buddy!

    your friend,
    kymber

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    1. Well, I guess I should have warned him then. Sorry Buddy.
      Thanks Kymber

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  19. you gotta out do me huh??

    gloves are off pal, i will be cooking up something even more spectacular than that if it kills me ;-))))))

    awesome mdr, freaking awesome!!

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    1. Thanks Jamb,
      I should have called first, I know.
      Good luck with your very spectacular project.

      BTW, here in Texas we don't use gloves anyway.

      All the best to y'all up there.

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  20. Great idea! Now do you have a post on how to get the hubby to make one for me? lol

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  21. Thank you SFG.
    If I could write a magical post to get him to do it I would.

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  22. Just found this post.... is there a follow up?

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    1. Just search it in the search bar Mike. There are several post on this.

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