Friday, 29 August 2014

Big, Bouncy Recycling

I collect as much rainwater as I can, of course. I am, after all, on metered water. There are some green reasons too, and water quality. Plants, unlike us, would rather their drink wasn't cold, hard and treated.

I have some green water butts, but they are getting old and need a bit of attention. When we moved here, there were also two 1000 litre containers balanced on pallets. They are industrial / agricultural and fairly easy to get round here. If I remember correctly, they are known as IPCs, though it could be three different letters!
Anyway, the guttering from the outbuildings had been cobbled together to lead the water into these. The trouble was that when they filled up the water just spilled out of the top. Not a problem in itself, except that a tower of pallets with a tonne of water on top does not last long, especially when it is being constantly dowsed in water.

Eventually I had to take the IPCs down and since then I have been trying to come up with a way of raising them up. Sleepers was an option, but not a cheap one. Concrete plinths was another option, again not cheap and I don't really like using concrete unless I have to.

But last week I had a bit of a brainwave. What about tyres? What about tractor tyres? A quick look on ebay and I'd placed a bid. £1 for two. Two days later and I'd won them, for 99p. Three days later and I'd got the measurements and figured out they wouldn't fit in my car or my livestock trailer!

Over to Don the friendly neighbour, and yesterday morning I was heading over to the other side of Kings Lynn to collect my tractor tyres. When I got there, they were huge! Goodness knows how big the tractor had been. Not only that, but they were heavy, especially as the rims had filled with water. We had about an inch to spare across the trailer, but unfortunately they wouldn't quite both fit in flat lengthways, which made for a somewhat bouncy drive home. I certainly drove gently, especially along some of our bumpier fenland roads.

An unusual load

I kept a careful eye on my bouncy load on the way home.
 I got back to the farm and set about hauling and rolling the tyres into position.

Giant specs
There was always the chance that they would be too big for the IPCs, in which case they would make impressive raised beds. But actually they were a pretty good fit.

The next test is whether or not they will support 1000kg of water. If not, the plan is to fill them with rubble and soil. If that still doesn't work, it'll be back to raised beds and trying to figure out how to raise the IPCs off the ground.
An afternoon of teaching myself how to route guttering and I now have a way of capturing two cubic metres of water at a time. A little more plumbing and they will be connected to hosepipes and have overflows leading to a pond which is not yet dug.

All I need now is a good rainstorm

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