An unusually social week just past…


…as a gang of plumbers came and went. The terminal objective was to install a water pressure pump at Ian’s place. The enabling objectives were numerous and included putting in this underground ‘vault’ to contain all the pieces…


…oh, and also draining the water tank.

Lovely.


So I spent a couple of days washing with bottled water and crapping into a bucket. Which didn’t actually bother me at all since I expect things like that from time to time. I keep 5-gallon jugs of water just in case, and I have a Plan B chair. But still it was kind of amusing that I was just thinking the other day about how it might be time to retire the blog because it’s less and less about the adventure of roughing it out alone in the boonies and more about an old man quietly living in a cabin with a Corgi.

And anyway it was instructive in that I finally got to note the minimum pressure indicated when the pipe up to the top of the ridge is full of water but there’s no tankful of water to pressurize it…


On a full tank that pressure is 18.5 to a touch over 20 PSI, apparently depending on temperature for some reason I haven’t quite figured out. And as Big Brother theorized a couple of years ago, that means that a big enough gauge will warn you when the tank is unexpectedly going empty. I had already kind of confirmed that it was so but this is the first time I was able to measure empty-tank pressure.

Also when you get some water back into the tank, the first thing you need to do is flush the plumbing because…


Iron oxide and calcium. Lots of iron oxide and calcium.

And my part of the project is a lot less done than I anticipated. I had promised to bring electricity to the surface from the underground powershed. I did that and it emerged about 35 feet from the new vault. The plumber’s idea of that was somewhat different from mine: He wants electricity to the vault. That means I have to ditch a bunch of conduit, fortunately not too deep. And it turns out that today I got the conduit free…


…because Neighbor D had 3 long sticks of 1″ PVC that have been gathering dust and in the way in his barn for over a decade and he wanted them gone. So now I’ll fill them with Romex and bury them. I want to take this opportunity to put an outlet up on top of the cave which means I need a junction box. I wasn’t able to get one locally but Landlady said she’d bring one up from the city this weekend.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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20 Responses to An unusually social week just past…

  1. Anonymous says:

    I look forward to reading about the old man living in his cabin with a corgi.

  2. BobF says:

    Somehow I don’t think the adventures are likely to end anytime soon, but I too would enjoy if things were down to an old fart and his pup.

  3. bmq215 says:

    Put me down as another person who would miss the blog. It’s been fun watching you build your idea of home and I’m pretty sure it will continue to be.

  4. terrapod says:

    The adventure never ends, trust me in that Murphy is a very persistent fellow.

    I do scratch my head sometimes as to how a desert hermit packrat does not have bins full of used parts, electrical, mechanical and general scrap for just this kind of thing. You have to up your scrounging skills a tad and work out with Ian to store the stuff in a nice neat organized manner. Then again, if I am driving out to Chandler, maybe I can drop off a few boxes worth in Tucson at the mail drop if your mail drop person is amenable. Just let me know.

  5. JayNola says:

    I’m all good with more “my side of the mountain” and less “to build a fire”.

  6. What exactly is the water distribution there? Are you and Ian part of some communal water delivery system? Or is it just the two of you on a shared system? Or….?

  7. SLee says:

    I will happily continue to read about the daily life of a desert hermit and his dog, as long as you enjoy writing it.

  8. Joel says:

    CZ, it’s a shared system used by Ian’s place and the Lair. The well and water tank are on the top of the ridge and pipes run down both sides. His place is higher and so has less head pressure. Things get complicated when you have barely more than a trickle of very hard water and want something like hot water for a shower.

  9. Matthew says:

    The continuing misadventures of a man who pets his corgi, while sitting on his plan B crapper pondering the issues of iron oxide and calcium, wondering all the while, “what does it all mean?”

  10. Norman says:

    Would this have been a good time to flush the sediment, etc. from the bottom of the tank?

  11. Norman says:

    And, wasn’t there something about needing to empty the tank so it could be rotated to put a valve in a different position? Or, am I several episodes behind in the story?

  12. Joel says:

    Or, am I several episodes behind in the story?

    A few, yeah, but only because I didn’t tell the story. It still makes me mad and I don’t want to start my day with elevated blood pressure so I’ll leave it at an often-repeated observation that our local contractors are not widely renowned for good things. Honestly I’m surprised I haven’t found any leaks yet, though the day is young.

  13. Ben says:

    Do what’s best for Joel, but I would seriously miss my daily dose of TUAK.

    We you go to town, feel free to indulge your paranoia. COVID-wise, AZ has not been doing well lately.

  14. I wish you hadn’t spoken of a lack of adventure in your life, provoking Murphy. I hope this news in nowhere near you or Landlady….
    https://www.msn.com/en-us/weather/topstories/bighorn-fire-near-tucson-has-burned-over-6-000-acres-and-is-threatening-hundreds-of-homes/ar-BB15nItO

    Bighorn fire near Tucson has burned over 6,000 acres and is threatening hundreds of homes

  15. TK421a says:

    “about an old man quietly living in a cabin with a Corgi”

    The adventures you write about are very much like those written about by Dan Needles in his stories about Wingfield Farm which is why I started reading this blog a long time ago.

  16. Anonymous says:

    your blog is the one out of 30 that i always read with delight. probably because i relate. i am an old lady living with my 3 chihuahuas and your corgi is delightful. PLEASE KEEP BLOGGING!!!

  17. Joe Porter says:

    Speaking as a guy who works for the Man and lives in a small city with a giant schnauzer or three – keep up the blogging. Hard water is a pet hate of mine. Not been able to get the sticks where I have a 400 year old place to stay for 3 months now.

    You’d not like our firearms laws though.

  18. matismf says:

    You realize that, if you stop blogging, weird stuff will no longer show up at LL, other than that sent by BB?

  19. Norman says:

    “….often-repeated observation that our local contractors are not widely renowned for good things.”

    You ain’t the Lone Ranger; incompetence and sloppiness have become the default setting for nearly everything, with precious few exceptions. I do not know enough four-letter words to properly describe the majority of contractors, service technicians and tradespeople with whom I come into contact.

  20. Ben says:

    Small point:. You may have used the term “Romex” generically, but it is best to use type UF cable for that job. It looks much like Romex and is available at your local HD or Lowe’s. UF stands for Underground Feeder.

To the stake with the heretic!