Southwest Tour: [Mikey Sklar's] homestead

While on our southwest tour, we were sure to make some time to go visit [Mikey Sklar]. He’s been a friend of hackaday for a long time, both as a writer and as someone who sends us cool projects. As you may have noticed from some of the posts we’ve done on his projects, [Mikey] lives in the middle of the desert and is attempting to lead a fairly self sustaining life style. He and [Wendy] showed us their gardens, the hot spring on their property,and some cool building materials they’ve utilized. We got to tour [Mikey's] workshop and check out how his solar system was set up. It was pretty cool seeing “da Pimp” being used to revive old batteries. [Mikey] even mentioned that he’s building in a lot of safeguards in the next revision based on the feedback he got online.

What I really enjoyed about talking with [Mikey] and [Wendy] was that they didn’t act like they had it all figured out. They’re approaching this whole lifestyle as a learning adventure as you can hear when [Mikey] talks about their bees.

Comments

  1. Itwork4me says:

    Surprised there are no comments…at first I was like, whatever…Still a bit confused as to how ‘off the grid’ this is. From the statement of building the wall to keep the outside elements out, and a shot that looked like you have a neighbor (white warehouse and what looks like powerlines at 1:50)…I question the definition of off-the-grid. The use of paper is understandable, but the fire danger and having to mix it with boric acid and stuff sounds like Mike said, a possible waste of resources. Paper is fuel in my book…so I don’t see how long the fence will last if things get ugly and cold and you’re cut off from yer neighbor. The nicest thing was the battery charging room and office, which I think you could muster an ac if you are powering a pc. The trees should be in planters that you can move and keep from burning…and probably in a green house, as that doesn’t look like soil so no wonder why yer trees are dwarfed. Other than that, looks like yer ‘getting by’ so congrats.

    • n0lkk says:

      Seems to me not being connected to the grid should suffice as defining off grid. One could live off the grid in the suburbs if one wishes, although some jurisdictions would demand the home have the ability to go one grid Proximity to th grid shouldn’t factor into it anymore than living where the owls get the chicken should be a requirement. I took the fence to be about traffic noise abatement, or perhaps a visual screen. The plants look to be what I’d expect in six years in that environment.

  2. Chris C. says:

    Longer videos don’t get as much attention here. I usually pass them by myself, and only came back and watched it now because I remember “Da Pimp” as a design that impressed me; and still has me thinking about ways to improve how the multitude of batteries around my house are maintained.

    Looks like everything is a grand experiment to Mikey. Very cool.

  3. Ragnar says:

    I can only recommend reading their blog. Whenever you have a question, both of them will reply. I wish them all the luck in their efforts and hope their dog Sesame got better.

  4. Tachyon says:

    Awesome video, very great ideas for recycling and self powering.

  5. Andrew says:

    Awesome. Thanks for sharing. How about using polystyrene blocks to thermally insulate the container office?

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