The Useful Duck!

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Sunday, December 7, 2014

Burning Flax Straw

Saturday we recycled.
(not a very good picture but it is hard to time the shutter to the explosion)

Recycling day at the farm is always a lot of fun. The kids scoured the farm for anything burnable or remotely explosive. Then we piled that on the baled flax straw that was too dirty to sell for erosion control, doused with a mixture of diesel and gasoline, and lit a match. Well, someone forgot to add the gasoline and the butane torch wouldn't stay lit and nothing ever goes as planned, but we got it going.

The fun thing about recycling is the used starting fluid cans. Cans of spray paint which no longer spray are also a lot of fun.  We sat the cans on a board over the fire and then when the caps started to melt, shot them with the .22's. We had a regular firing line. The key is to shoot them when they are just about to explode on their own.

Several very satisfying explosions were experienced. There is nothing like a good ball of fire on a wet and cold Saturday, right before you have to attend another funeral.

(Note: That is NOT my Chevy pickup shown in the photo)


  1. Sounds like fun. We once made a mortar to fire the spent gas canisters from our nail guns.
    It was fun.
    It went further than we though.
    It nearly damaged a very new car.
    We hid.
    We also giggled but that makes us sound girly!

  2. My kind of re-cycling. Today I could donate a few gallons of 30 something year old gas I drained out of the 39 Ford's tank to your fire. Unfortunately some of it is now soaking into the not very absorbent concrete floor under the car.

  3. now that is how you recycle! whooot!

  4. If I remember, you had the thing running on that old gas. Or am I thinking of the wrong car?

  5. Question was for Ralph, obviously. Guess I got in a hurry. I used to burn our trash in a barrel. I could always tell when my wife forgot and put spray cans in with the papers.

  6. Since you ask Gorges, yes I ran that 39 but not using the old gas in the main tank. A non OSHA approved auxiliary plastic jug under the hood made a good temporary fuel tank.


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