Off-Grid Video Extravaganza Part 5 of 6
“What is a soul? It’s like electricity – we don’t really know what it is, but it’s a force that can light a room.”
Off-Grid Float Cabin on a Lake
By Bev Sandlin, Executive Editor
This video is about an off-grid float cabin on a lake in British Columbia. I would Love to live there! We have many float cabins on the Mississippi River which have year around communities. Features in this video that you will see are a combination of solar, wind and thermoelectric power; a floating garden and woodshed; a rain catchment system for land gardening that uses gravity feed; a solar water pump for the float garden; hand pump in the kitchen; composting toilet; and a propane stove and refrigerator.
12 min 55 seconds: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4suoDPC0ip8
Margy and Wayne Lutz were camping in Coastal British Columbia when they discovered their dream home: the float cabins of Powell Lake. They’re not houseboats, but “float cabins”, that is, they’re permanently anchored to shore.
Float cabins were first built on Powell Lake as inexpensive and portable homes for loggers and fishermen. Since then they’ve become regulated and the 200 float cabin owners here these days lease their water lots from the BC government for $500 per year.
The Lutz’s bought their retirement home in 2001 for 35,000 Canadian dollars (about $25,000 USD, at the time), what they considered worth the risk if their experiment in off-grid living didn’t work out.
A few years later they retired early from their school district jobs in Los Angeles, anxious to start living their dream, and moved into their small (420 square feet, plus a 200-square-foot sleeping loft) floating home. At the time it didn’t have indoor plumbing so they hiked 4 flights of stairs up the granite cliff to an outhouse (they’ve since installed a composting toilet indoors).
Today, the Lutz’s live completely off-the-grid. There’s no water heater (they boil it on the wood stove as a luxury) and no plumbing. They hand-pump water from the lake (for washing dishes, they remove most food first and use only biodegradable soap and the water is returned to the lake).
There’s no trash pickup. They compost nearly everything. For their energy uses, the Lutz’s rely on solar, wind, and thermoelectric power. For heat, they rely on a wood stove (fueled mostly with driftwood) that has been rigged with an experimental thermoelectric system generating a trickle charge to their batteries.
Their buoyant home doesn’t make gardening easy, but Margy has found a way to provide much of the summertime produce. In addition to a hillside potato garden, she created a floating vegetable garden.
More info on original story: http://faircompanies.com/videos/view/off-grid-float-cabin-retirement-tiny-hom…
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