Posts by julianthegypsy

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UKHippy is a long running online community and of likeminded people exploring all interpretations on what it means to be living an alternative lifestyle -- we welcome discussions on everything related to sustainability, the environment, alternative spirituality, music, festivals, politics and more -- membership of this website is free but supported by the community.

    Had a microdiscectomy in 2012, after a disc bulged out, pressing on the sciatic nerve and left me unable to do anything but swallow liquid morphine. One night in hospital then lots of physio, but the pain relief was instant, just soreness for where they sliced me open and the twelve steel staples they closed it with. Lasted just over a year...then started again and still ongoing. Various denervations, with no success, last MRI was clear but nerve conduction tests (very ouchy) apparently showed major active nerve root denervation. Finally seeing the consultant again today and we'll see where it goes from there. Surgery for this kind of thing never seems to be a final solution though, which is why they try to postpone it as long as possible. ix one disc, it moves to the next one etc. I could cope with the pain, but not if I do too much work. The problem is the DWP insisting that I'm perfectly fit for work of course. Realistically, I could manage about twenty hours a week, if I didn't have to cook, wash up and all the other things we have to do to survive. If I do the one, I can't do the other. Fucked both ways...

    Bastards. You know why you hvae to wait an hour for it to cure? In a car its normally four hours. In case you had a minor accident and set the airbag off, it would blow the windscreen out. Oops! Glad you're ok and moved on.

    This!


    Mine (wombled, legitimately with a big box of spare tips, shrouds, liners and reels from a previous employer)


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    Exactly that Rick! It doesn't matter if it won't run at full power on a 13 amp plug, because neither will a smaller one, and it will likely have a lower minimum amp rating than a new 150 amp machine. Those things aim to sell by advertising the highest possible maximum amperage, even if the duty cycle is so low it's unusable at full power as you have to stop and have a brew every time you run a couple of inches to let it cool down. What they don't tell you is that the minimum setting is often around 45 amps, whereas a proper one will likely go down to 15 or twenty and will be much better for vehicle bodywork, even if 0.9mm sheet metal is still an utter bastard. I see that yours has a variable stitch setting too Rick, that's something you will never find on a new one and makes thin sheet metal dead easy. It basically burns for second then stops for a second to let everything cool down before hitting it again. Beautiful. You adjust it to suit what you're doing and you can produce beautiful work with no blowholes!

    How could I forget Roy Buchanan! I saw him live in about '73, he was extraordinary! Roy Harper is yet another extraordinary acoustic guitar talent. Funnily enough, I had an old family friend when I was much younger, he was something of a mentor. He had a very good legal career, but in his spare time he was a virtuoso jazz and blues guitarist. Now for the punchline, he once played in a jazz band in London agter they kicked Hank Marvin out because he wasn't good enough. He had invites to play all over the place and we never understood why he didn't play professionally. Now it makes perfect sense. He had a good career, and music was the hobby he loved, he didn't want to ruin it. Makes perfect sense now, but not to a teenager!

    There is no best. There are just some geniuses. Ry Cooder has to be worth a mention (apart from all the ones mentioned so far), Duane Allman is another, Michael Chapman is another very rarely heard, Leo Kotke, Thompson has already been mentioned, Jimmy Page, god, you could go on forever!

    Get a decent second hand mig and I'll teach you enough to get working in a day. Look out for old big single phase migs, they look crap but keep going and will run rings round modern ones, unless the modern one is about a thousand quid....

    Sorry I haven't been around much, I've just had too much on my plate, but I haven't gone anywhere.

    I'm sure my guide is around somewhere, I think ColinM may know where. I'm crap at that kind of thing, I can write it, but don't ask me to file it!

    First thought is that as someone else mentioned, a 60mm flue is way to small. I've only ever made one stove with a flue anywhere near that, and it was a tiny solid fuel job. Even then I'm sure it was more like 75mm. The smallest I ever use is 100mm. If it doesn't sound that much difference, do the math:

    26mm squared x pi =2,124mm2.

    50squared x pi =7,854mm2.

    In other words, a 100mm flue is 3.7 times larger than a 50mm flue. In practice, it will choke up very quickly, and potentially dangerously. I don't like dangerous...

    It was just a thought. If it worked, it might be a nice little regular earner, and not too difficult to run if someone was willing to handle it. As well as things like UKH t shirts etc, one off stuff that people had made that was more arts and crafts than UKH brand should sell well. Here's a thing. Is someone sets it up, I will build and donate a small stove to get that rolling.


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    I'd go for a swb transit. Small enough to fit in tesco parking spaces and enough room for a mini steve and a proper bed etc if you think about it before you begin. Doesn't need to be complicated, bang in some insulation, bang in some ply to cover it and off you go.
    Dpesn't need to be a transit, peugeot, citroen, fiat, whatever, they'd all work.

    seen one last week made out of an old gas bottle, sounded superb


    Any idea how much they fetch? I could build them no problem, and enjoy doing it, but I still have rent to pay...although I have better kit than the guy in the video. Might be a nice thing to do in Summer when people want music instead of something to stop them freezing!

    Agree about the rebrand, I meet lots of people who come to me for stoves, I'm talking now mostly about vans, and as an observer they have a lot in common, many of them like going off to festivals, but by no means all. Some of them want to live in their vans to get away from paying extortionate rent, others just want a bit of freedom, some of them have well paying jobs, whether they llive in their vehicle or not. Their is a commonality though, and that is independent thinking, refusal to do what is expected just because that's what everyone else does, going their own way and happy to make sacrifices and put the work in to get where they want to, not giving a shit who is winning X factor or whatever drivel is current, loving the countryside is common, loving fire, but maybe that's why they come to me lol, but anyway, there are unifying themes here, but hippy isn't one of them. It isn't even one of mine although it's a term that people have applied to me many times. For the excruciatingly long record, when we were kids and had labels, I was a freak. It's a thing you never really hear these days. We wore afghan coats, smoked dope and had long hair. We never even met any hippies and I'm not sure there ever were any in UK, it was an American thing or a label applied to freaks by idiots. Freaks were an american thing too. Don't believe me? Listen to Almost Cut My Hair by CSN&Y. It was about defiance, about doing our own thing, refusing to conform, (bear in mind we could be imprisoned for smoking dope and often had our homes raided on the offchance we might have a couple of joints. Seriously.), and wanting a life that was bigger than working in a factory and saving enough money to buy a nice little semi. Rant over. People don't change, times do. I'm an old dinosaur, but there are plenty of kids out there who want more, who are hungry for a world where they can do want they want without getting busted by the cops for harming nobody just because the government can't handle it, who don't watch the soap operas because they are shit, and are generally looking for something better, and where they have a voice too. Where was I? UKH means nothing to all these people, and neither do hippies, but they all share our values, and they are pretty much where I was when I was younger. I don't know what I'm suggesting here, it's late, I'm tired and had a really shitty day, but if we are looking for a new brand, I hope some of what I said may be useful in figuring it out. My apologies for rambling, but that was also one of the things that UKH was always good for, venting when things were a bit shit and turning it into something positive.

    Roy Harper has been a favourite of mine since about 1971! In addition to Flat, baroque and berserk, I'd recommend Stormcock as a cracking album, and the slightly later HQ, which is available on CD on his own label now and really rocks, as well as having some float away stuff on it too. If you can find it, the live double Flashes From The Archives of Oblivion is an absolute belter and pretty much has Stormcock on it anyway, but live and even more spellbinding.

    Many years ago I was a regular visitor to Singapore, and I used to love seeing all the people doing Tai Chi. Some of them looked at least 108 years old, but still moved with suppleness and grace. They were a very good advert for it!

    I've done one of these and actually found it very useful. We were also given copious amounts of tea and biscuits, whic helps enormously. I understand they do vary though, and some of them are really dull, and mean, with no tea OR biscuits. As far as declaring it goes though, if they aren't allowed to ask the question, then surely it can't be wrong to give them the wrong answer can it?

    I got the message this morning. Gutting. I don't post half as much as I used to, but not through lack of interest. I'm just so busy I never seem to get time, and am often on my mobile, which I hate for this kind of thing as I'm one of those laptop/desktop/proper computer dinosaurs. I'd hate to see this place go, it's done so much for so many people, not least of all me, which reminds me I have some cash to bank in the next couple of days so I need to donate.
    As someone else has said, facebook is no substitute for this place, it's ephemeral, here and gone, and information is drowned by the tide. All the expertise on van building etc, is here and stays here, it's invaluable. I don't know what the answer is, but as ar as money goes, AW mentioned a festival, which would be cool but complicated, but taking the idea, we have a big gathering at Dovedale every year and we just pay the farmer for camping. I'd be happy to bung in a tenner on top to be part of the UKH gathering, rather than just another tourist. Wouldn't solve all the problems, but it would be several hundred extra quid in the kitty. Another idea occurrs, lots of us clear out tat from time to time, maybe we could sell bits and bobs we no longer need in aid of the site? Just bouncing ideas around. On the subject of membership, I know its contentious, but many forums allow non members to view the forums but not participate without registering. If there was a couple of quid charge for registering, I suspect people building trucks might be willing to pay to get the benefit of all the expertise? Again, I'm just deperately trying to think of ideas, and I hope people can think of some better ones. Times change, but it would be very sad to lose this place.