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Topics - Hutchy

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General Winter Camping Discussion / How traditional are you?
« on: January 19, 2014, 09:23:10 am »
Hey guys.

So what is your philosophy on this? How rigid are you when it comes to being traditional? Are you a wool, cotton, steel, candle only type person, or do you embrace more technology? Do you prefer nostalgia, or performance?

I prefer traditional because it works better, and is often cheaper. Of course, I wear some synthetic stuff. On the whole tho, it just is more comfortable for me to use trad gear, and it is better suited to actually living outdoors.

Some things I use that do make life easier: head lamps, synthetic sleeping pads and bags, mono line on snowshoes, fleece, plastic water bottles, plastic toboggans, etc.

Has anyone ever done a "strictly traditional" type trip?


General Winter Camping Discussion / The Cheap Set up Thread.
« on: January 07, 2013, 04:10:34 pm »
I think the number one thing people complain about when getting into trad winter camping is the price of equipment.
I hope this has not been covered before, but here goes..

Sort of wondering...who has the cheapest functional trad winter camping set up? Could someone outfit themselves with a bit of inenuity, basic sewing skills, simple tools etc, for 500 bucks? 300 bucks? 100 bucks? Nothing?? I think that with the economy still in the dumper for the most part, many would be interested in doing it on the cheap. I lurk a bit over at a lightweight backpacking web site, and a lot of them have really cheap superlight backpacking set ups. Like literally next to nothing with some homemade stuff.

Also, if you could share cheap solutions,  ideas, etc. I know ammo can stoves and drop cloth tents are good to start. I guess what I am asking is you to share your cheap ideas no one may have thought of.

I know the do it yourself threads are loaded with inexpensive solutions to many things so I suppose one could look there...but a lot of times projects seem to end up costing more than originally intended, especially with little things no one thought of.

As for credibility, I am out, since I am have a ton invested in my not yet complete stove :P ... :D

I think sleeping bags are the next most expensive thing people always struggle over. There is a thread here where someone new to winter camping is buying a brand new western mountaineering bison...and thats great! If I could I would and more power to that person. I honestly hope they really enjoy that awesome piece of equipment.  But would two inexpensve bags not be cheaper and reasonably functional? Besides, one can upgrade slowly, and still go camping while they do it!

My peeve is stuff like patagonia (aka patagucci). A 175 dollar mid weight fleece? Seriously? How much actual performance difference really is there between that and a wally world, or thrift fleece? And how much less will you cry when a spark jumps out of the stove and melts a hole in it? yes the wool is nice, but often pricey. Also, I believe fleece is actually, (as much as we dont want to admit it), warmer for the weight than most wool, just as warm when damp, and easier on the pocket book. A quick ebay search turned up many many fleece shirts for about 15 bucks shipped. And that is without even trying.

I know that there is something to be said for having that cadillac piece of gear, like a snowtrekker, or steger mukluks or anything from western mountaineering...however I guess I just want people to realize that they do not need to break the bank to get into this, because there is a lot of cheap gear that is not perfect, but gets the job done.

Some ideas on how would be great!


Winter Trekking Ice Fishing / Cleaning pike boneless
« on: December 26, 2012, 11:01:43 am »
Hello all,

 I find there is a bit of a trend towards people not liking to eat pike. Some say that is tastes fishy, stinky, etc. And all those bones!

I would actually rather have a pike than anything else, and have had only one that I can remember that tasted a bit more fishy than some and that was an nine pounder in late august I believe. Was still good, but had a slight fish taste to it. (it is fish, strange enough). I usually keep them in the three to six pound range and would take a six pound pike over a six pound walleye. I find that peoples aversion to them has to do with the bones. I grew up next door to a fishing and hunting guide who in 20 years of living here never bought meat. I learned quickly that cleaning pike boneless, and soaking it (and all wild meat) in salt water prior to eating makes all the difference and ehances the enjoyment of it. A pike fillet, and some cajun fish crisp cooked on the ice? Red lobster can keep its all you can eat shrimp.

My question is this: How many people fillet it boneless and is there an interest in a video on how to fillet it boneless?

I have heard there is another method different from how I do it, but I waste little meat, so I feel it works.
The ice is about thick enough now, and as soon as I can get all these christmas functions out of the way I could catch a few and do a video. I have not posted vids before, but it will be an adventure.  ;D

Lemme know.


Tents and Shelters / Fauxtrekker tent
« on: December 13, 2012, 01:56:16 pm »
So here is my solo tent made from snowtrekker canvas, dubbed the "fauxtrekker". Special thanks go to my mother who loaned me the machine and did quite a bit of sewing herself. Learning to sew was not that hard actually. The only thing left to do on it will be to add about an 18 inch sod cloth made of a sewable tarp type material. That way I can get it that little bit higher off the ground and seal it with snow.  Some shots include Pepsi the retriever, for scale, and occasionally, Sherry, for visual attraction... :D

Headroom was not an issue when I designed it, and I can sit on a milk crate to cook. Its about nine feet long, somewhere around five feet wide. It is designed to be set up with a ridge line pulled tight with a truckers hitch between trees. It also has severely strong nylon loops for use with a ridge pole should the location not be perfect. Eventually I may get a frame for it.

The stove jack.
I did some basic research regarding the how hot a stove pipe gets. I concluded that the hottest it would probably get it somewhere around 500 degrees celcius. This may be wrong, I dont know the info I could find was not great. The cheapest solution for a stove jack? Well, silicone baking sheets are rated to be used at like 480 degrees... hmm.. So I heated a stove I had red hot, and placed a bit of baking sheet on it...Nothing...except some small surface discoloration. Who knows what ratings actually mean anyway. If it doesnt work, I will put a metal ring around it. So far so good, add it seals around pipes great. Oh, and it cost about three bucks.  :)

The Door is a heavy duty zipper from a local boat top manufacturer.

The other feature I am proud of is the side guy outs. Thanks to Dave Marrone for his contribution to design here. I sewed sleeves for the sides and used cheap aluminum bowhunting arrows for inside the sleeves. Presto, lots of interior room. small footprint, and steep roof slope to shed snow. No knots either just insert the arrow shaft, and slide it through a loop in the guy line as it passes by the opening. 

Other Homemade Gear / Titanium box stove build
« on: December 11, 2012, 10:23:45 pm »
Hello.     (sorry should this go in the woodstove forum? please move if necessary, apologies)

Just sharing a bit about a build I am doing of a lightweight titanium wood stove. last winter I got a machine, taught myself to sew and made a solo hot tent out of snowtrekker canvas. Footprint is about six feet by nine feet, weight, about 11 pounds. Another member on here added some input on design, and I am not sure who named it, but it shall forever be known as the "Feauxtrekker" tent.
Anywho, now all that was needed was a decent heater. coal was too dirty, oil too ...oily, and electric...well...receptacles are so darned hard to find ten miles from civilization... After much research, I settled on wood as a fuel... :o ;D

Disclaimer: As I have stated in another post I have "lightweight-itis". and it is incurable...  :D

Seriously though, I wanted my stove to be several things.
1. lightweight...I am an addict.
2. be able to cook on. (of course)
3. Be able to hold a fire a reasonably long time at a lower heat output. (AIR TIGHT)
4. negligible fiddle factor (set up time)
5. Big enough to heat a small hot tent.
6. Not break the bank.

There were problems with many of the other stoves on the market. Titanium goat, kifaru, other takedown stoves on the market either seemed too small, and after reading all the reviews the internet could muster, I decided that the fiddle factor was a bit much. Also, they were NOT airtight, and while they "really put out the heat"...maybe... they only did so for a short amount of time. Unless I am way off, these stoves were way off for my needs.

The sheet metal stoves stoves I looked at, the kni co, the cabelas stoves, and any of the other brands I looked at all had something wrong. (although kni co came darn close.)

The commercially available titanium stoves I looked at really all seemed...well...brutally expensive. Four dog's smallest ti stove was eight pounds, about 600.00 and it was almost as big as I wanted. Also, sorry but still too heavy. 

So here is what I am creating:

I ordered a sheet of .012" titanium sheet from Titanium Joe, which sell titanium surplus (no connection to me whatsoever but great guys by the way) it was about two feet wide, and four feet long. I cut the piece length wise making it about 17.5"long and 48" wide. I bent it on a brake, and made the large piece into the firebox, making the firebox 11.5x11.5x17.5" long. The pieces I cut off were made to be stove ends. (in two pieces).

To make it airtight, it would have to be welded together...I had titanium joe also send me some titanium TIG weld rod. Today, I gave the stove to someone with tig welding skill to have the firebox welded together. When I get it back after Christmas some time I will post pics along with the rest of the build.
To make the door airtight, I will be getting some three quarter inch wide by 1/16" strips of firecloth. The door will be cut out of the end of the stove, and the vent in the door. With the door removed, I will rivet on strips of titanium about 5/8" wide as a door stop. The firecloth will be sandwiched between the door stop and the front of the stove and the door will rest on the firecloth...maybe hard to visualize, but when I get it done and put on some pics it will make sense. This should make the stove functionally airtight. It is tough to believe, however the strength and resilience of the material is actually mind blowing. Considering it is only .012"thick, It is tough to dent and I dont believe I could have creased a seventeen inch section with out some mechanical advantage. It really is incredible stuff.

For a stove pipe, I ordered a six foot strip of 12" wide titanium .005" foil from titanium goat. This should allow me to have a three and a half inch dia. roll up stove pipe with suficient overlap. I will need to make exact size stove pipe keeper rings. (fishing leaders and crimps?) The size of the pipe should be close to the correct size, but this is more of a guess actually. I got the six foot legth to ensure that there would be suficient draft to hopefully make up for its possibly too small diameter. The piece I cut out of the stove for the pipe to enter the stove will be made into a damper for the pipe to save wasting of material.

Stove legs still must be designed.

Lets talk weight. The pipe weighs about 1.8 ounces per foot, so at six feet thats about eleven ounces.
so far, the stove has only used the titanium in the sheet I bought.

titanium weighs about 0.16 pounds per cubic inch. this means  48x24x0.012x0.16=2.2 lbs.
2.2 lbs plus 11oz is something like 2 lbs 14.2 oz.
Add to this so far undesigned legs, a few small steel rivets and firecloth, maybe a few ounces...

sooo... unless my math is wrong,and there is a good chance it is, my entire stove will weigh a shade over THREE pounds, and have 2314.375 cubic inch volume, or almost 1.4 cubic foot volume, be airtight, will hold a decent amount of wood, will not be costing me over about three hundred thirty bucks pipe included, and has minimal fiddle factor to set it up. Combined with the feauxtrekker, I should have a comfortable hot tent set up for solo (squishy for two but doable) for under fifteen pounds.  8)

Well, There it is, the plan in motion. I will be posting pics as soon as I get it back. Can anyone think of anything I should do different? Questions? concerns? comments? feedback?

Thanks alot guys and gals, just thought I would share this and see what you all think.  I will put up a pic of the Feauxtrekker too when I get tired of being sick and lying on the couch...which I hope is soon... >:(



Classifieds / canvas 8x10 for sale
« on: December 10, 2012, 10:48:19 am »
Hello all,

This is my first post, and I hope it is not in bad taste to sell something right off the bat. anywho,

I have a canvas 8x 10 wall tent with stove jack and sod cloth for sale. I bought it new about four years ago from porcupine canvas. It is fire resistant 10 oz fabric. It was only used for about two months total.

I believe I paid about 900.00 for it, possibly more, but am not sure of the exact price. I would like to get 650.00 for it, as it is  in like new condition.  I am however, open to offers.
I live near Parry Sound, but am frequently in Sudbury and in southern ontario. I do not mind delivering, but am not interested in shipping it.

If interested pm me and we can talk on the phone.

Thank you!

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