Posts by Little Mouse

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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.

    Good idea Zenedd :D

    I would generally agree with both of you about it being the smaller wire... unfortunately there are two wires of exactly the same size coming out of the same connector (which at first glance looks like a simple white plastic push-on but in reality is part of a larger square white plastic unit which looks to have no visible way to remove it :S). One wire is brown/yellow striped and the other is black/white striped.

    It is the transit engine yes Rambo. I'll try to post a picture of it tomorrow.

    You should be able to check which is the right one as it runs to the dashboard light (the one with the picture of the battery) from the alternator. Hard to tell without looking at it unfortunately :)

    Personally, I think removal van bodies are best, the luton space above the cab is generally large enough for a double bed, this frees up a lot of space for living. The extra external height and length is a small price to pay for a spacious home I reckon.

    It's also often possible to find a second-hand Luton under 3.5t, and because the bed fits over the cab that leaves loads of space in the back for living space so could save you a lot of money on your license :)

    Fuses... I've been reading up on a VW site about them - the bloke there had a fuse box after the leisure battery... but isn't that what the Zig unit does? I thought each circuit had a fuse in it (on mine it has Lights, Water Pump and Auxillary, which I shall use for the fridge, each with a fuse) on the Zig. I don't need to put another one on each do I? Or do I... :S

    I don't have a zig myself but if there is already definitely a fuse on a circuit of the right size for its intended purpose then you don't need another one. Check there is already one though, you really don't want a fire in your lovely new van :)

    For the lights circuit you may need to change the fuse anyway if you're using LEDs as they only need really quite little fuses.

    Do I then need to fit a fuse box to run things off?

    YES!! Fuse every circuit coming from your leisure battery, just as you would in a house. Obviously the ampage of the fuses will be much lower than a house battery, but they perform the same function. You really don't want a fire starting in a vehicle mostly converted using flammable materials!

    I've never worked a stall market but I work at a lot of festivals every year and know quite a few traders :)

    Most supplement festival income with markets/craft fairs around the country, especially during the winter.

    My main tip I completely forgot until today (when I started my tax return self assessment) is to keep every single piece of paperwork relating to your business you get or make (and you need to keep your records by law for six years) - receipts, invoices, floats, stock takes, expenses incurred (including your vehicle), wages paid to any employees etc. These will be invaluable when it comes to your tax return!

    Also, have you considered going and working a festival helping someone else with their stall to get some first-hand experience and learn a bit from someone who's been doing it a while? It might give you more of an idea of how it will all work in the real world.

    so only charge when driving? i am such a novice (and i dont even know if the new van has a ciggie lighter!)

    If you have a leisure battery you can hook up a 12v cigarette lighter socket to that no problems :) otherwise you'll have to keep running the engine to keep the engine battery topped up so you can start your vehicle next time you want to move

    Firstly, how do you want to join things together and what are you joining together?

    Normal speaker wire will be fine to do most things with, but if you want just normal cable you will need a 2 or 3 amp capacity for your lighting and probably the water pump too. Not sure about the fridge, I've never used or wired one in in a van.

    If you have two pieces of cable a soldering iron, some solder, pliers and insulating tape should do it.

    Connecting blocks will meet a lot of your other needs, being fairly resistant to movement and are usefully interchangeable with each other:

    Don't forget to put fuses into each circuit too :)

    You have to pay for electricity if its available. So you may need a generator.

    That is true, but noisy generators are a pain to have nearby for you (especially at night) and wont always win you many friends among your neighbours! If you're doing more than a couple of festivals I would get hold of a small solar panel and some energy efficient (preferably LED) lights. Also, if you're living in your van then you should get enough power from it to power your electrics in the van too, so it's being used for the rest of the time you're not at festivals.

    There are often market stalls going on ebay for not too much money, which is a good start - plenty of stock is important (and a big van to put it all in!) including enough 'hippy tat'/blankets/warm jumpers and other common festival buys to keep you ticking over.

    A really beautiful and friendly display (and one that's well lit for after dark) is really important.

    It's a good idea to have a friend/worker with you at the festival for all those moments you need to nip out for a bite to eat/pop to the loo etc.

    Either lock all your stock away for the night or sleep in the stall with your products - you'll be amazed how many traders get robbed in the night, even at the fluffiest festivals.

    If we don't get planning, we'll just buy a horse box and live in that.

    Technically you would still need planning permission to live year-round in a vehicle on your land (which you wouldn't necessarily need to be honest about but if any of your neighbours questioned it you could be subject to inspections and potentially eviction). However, I believe there are exceptions for if you use your land for certain purposes which mean you need to be there all year round (such as charcoal burning), which you may be able to use if push comes to shove :)

    I don't like employment agencies - I've found them slow to pay, have a really poor record on workers' rights and a bad attitude to their staff (some of the abuse I've seen immigrant workers getting is unbelievable in one of the agencies I've worked with), although if you can bite the bullet they make a good stop-gap between other employment (especially if you're self-employed or work in stops and starts).

    They have the benefit of your being able to take and leave what work you want, but they also have no onus on them to offer you work you like, or are prepared to do. I have worked for one good agency who paid a decent rate and were nice to their staff, but they were a very small agency.

    If you want a qualification why not do modules at the OU
    If you just want to learn more check the openlearning section of OU - its free but you dont get a qualification

    I was going to suggest something similar - the foundation courses at the OU are really good (my sister's doing one at the moment) and a bit more involved than A Levels - you have to do a lot more independent learning and also don't have such a prescribed curriculum as A Levels. Plus they look more interesting on a CV than A Levels and fit in well with the idea of adult learning for your own enjoyment :)

    Certainly anti-depressants can make a difference and potentially help someone who is on the brink and can't be helped any other way, but I've always felt the downsides (a lot of them being major downsides) were enough to preclude their long-term use to treat people. I would be very concerned about their use to treat an issue which will continue to affect you for years and years to come. Doctors can be quite 'trigger-happy' when it comes to prescribing drugs for problems, not least in the psychopharmacology department, partly as they are constantly targeted and advertised to by pharmaceutical companies and partly because it's more expensive and time-consuming to treat someone psychologically rather than chemically. I would certainly suggest looking into any other alternatives first - local counselling services (Universities/colleges/religious groups sometimes offer this as well as the NHS) might be a start.

    Hope that's helpful :)

    I guess there is an argument that a secret ballot helps/encourages you to vote for who you really believe in. After all, look at the exit polls in the US Presidential election where way more people said they had voted for Obama than was possible, because they didn't want to look racist. Or if you didn't want your family/friends/colleagues to know who you really voted for as it might potentially affect your relationship with them or even your position with work if you disagreed with them?

    i am convinced spiders will take over the moon. i kno how? why? how wud thy get thr? but is is a little known fact that spiders can suvive on the moon they tested it and found spiders do not need exactly the same atmosphere as eath!!!!! therefore the moon would be livable for them!!!!!

    Where do you get the idea that spiders can survive on the moon? They took spiders into space to see how they spun webs in zero gravity but they didn't release them onto the moon. The only references I can find to spiders on the moon are in fiction books ...

    I can't understand for a minute why anyone would think permanently sterilising drug addicts is an acceptable thing to do, in the same way as permanently sterilising anyone would be. I understand it's not "forced" (in that no one is holding them kicking and screaming to do it) but offering someone addicted to drugs who desperately wants money to feed their habit cash in exchange for getting it done effectively manipulates them into doing it.

    Why on earth can't the same information, funding (or even incentives) be made available for long-term contraception instead (and not just for drug addicts)? There are many different types out there and it makes far more sense to me.

    I expect it might be different for camper type vehicles but with cars you can get done for it.
    My brother's mate was waiting for my brother to get home so he could kip there. He was pissed, it was raining, so he sat in his car, in the passenger seat with the keys in the glove box. Got banned for 6 months.

    The rules must be different or no one could ever get pissed when on camper van holidays! Dunno where you could find out though

    I guess keep well away from the driver's seat:

    Quote from Road Traffic Act 1988 s. 5

    If a person ... is in charge of a motor vehicle on a road or other public place, after consuming [excess] alcohol [then] he is guilty of an offence [but] it is a defence for a person charged with [such] an offence to prove that at the time he is alleged to have committed the offence the circumstances were such that there was no likelihood of his driving the vehicle [with excess alcohol].

    Sorry to hear Jo - sounds like it was for the best but still a hard decision to have to make. Glad to hear you still have some parts to remember her by :)

    you have to learn not to worry about the police coming, because they will do and there's nothing you can do to avoid it, so it's a waste of anxiety. you will get used to it!


    British police are mostly pretty chilled out so I wouldn't worry too much :)

    The only trouble I've ever had was from the Forestry Commission when I was parked in their car park overnight which was covered by a bye-law saying no overnight parking (but no signs to tell you this :rolleyes:) - rather than actually knocking on the door and talking to me directly, instead they came by at least once an hour for over 4 hours shining lights in the windows, talking about the van, hanging about with the engine running in the car park and and generally being intimidating (especially as I couldn't work out who they were). Eventually they called the police who did knock on the door, asked who I was, ran numberplate checks on the vehicle to check it wasn't stolen, told me I wasn't allowed to stay there overnight but they were happy for me to stay until the morning rather than try to find somewhere else in the middle of the night. Much better and less worrying than the Forestry Commission!