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Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 15 total)
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  • in reply to: What's happening with classifieds #67904
    Joel
    Participant

    I don’t know. The forum software seems quite buggy. Apparently there is an update available and hopefully that will fix some of the quirks.

    A month ago I had typed up and posted a reply in a thread, but it never showed up. I waited awhile and typed up a new post, which posted immediately. Many days later, my original post magically appeared as a new post (now quite redundant) and the option to edit the post was absent so I was unable to delete or edit it – frustrating.

    Joel
    Participant

    Thanks everyone for all the details and for also including the costs of service, that is very helpful. Keep it coming!

    Here is the link with the cell plans Wretha. You get alerts (that you can custom set) to tell you if you are getting close to any of your limits. You can then upgrade your plan just for that previous/current cycle, then set it back to the bottom tier or whatever works for you. So, if you get the no minutes plan, don’t use it for 2 months and then use 150 minutes the next, you could temporarily upgrade to the $15 plan for just that billing cycle.

    I had briefly looked at prepaid phones, but the minutes would expire and other hassles I didn’t want. None of them fit my needs at the time anyway, so I didn’t do a lot of research.

    https://www.consumercellular.com/Info/Plans

    Here are the data plans (texts/data):

    https://www.consumercellular.com/Info/Services
    <table class=”tableListing fullWidth”>
    <tbody>
    <tr class=”jsConnectTableRow jsConnectTableRow_76 tableRow”>
    <td>Connect! Lite</td>
    <td>100 / 10MB</td>
    <td style=”width: 80px;”>$2.50</td>
    <td class=”textCenter”></td>
    </tr>
    <tr class=”jsConnectTableRow jsConnectTableRow_77 tableRow”>
    <td>Connect! Ready</td>
    <td>500 / 50MB</td>
    <td style=”width: 80px;”>$5.00</td>
    <td class=”textCenter”></td>
    </tr>
    <tr class=”jsConnectTableRow jsConnectTableRow_78 tableRow”>
    <td>Connect! Active</td>
    <td>1,000 / 100MB</td>
    <td style=”width: 80px;”>$10.00</td>
    <td class=”textCenter”></td>
    </tr>
    <tr class=”jsConnectTableRow jsConnectTableRow_79 tableRow”>
    <td>Connect! Complete</td>
    <td>4,000 / 400MB</td>
    <td style=”width: 80px;”>$20.00</td>
    <td class=”textCenter”></td>
    </tr>
    <tr class=”jsConnectTableRow jsConnectTableRow_99 tableRowLast”>
    <td>Connect! Max</td>
    <td>10,000 / 1GB</td>
    <td style=”width: 80px;”>$30.00</td>
    <td class=”textCenter”></td>
    </tr>
    </tbody>
    </table>
    I wonder, but have no idea how much data one would use, if say, they surfed the net for maybe an hour a day and checked email a few times. I suspect checking email uses little and streaming uses a ton.

    in reply to: 11,000 gallons in 3 days #67824
    Joel
    Participant

    What a great setup!

    I too, would like to know more about the construction of your tanks.

    Joel
    Participant

    Thank you! Hope you don’t mind some follow up questions for those so ignorant as myself:

    1-2) Like 3G or 4G? Do you use it as a hotspot for a computer? Pardon my not knowing, but I have never had/previously needed a cell phone with data, so know little about it or how much data might be used for typical computer use.

    3) A mailbox rental at a post office? Do you simply call UPS after placing an order and say ‘I will have to meet you at XX, please call me when in the area’?

    4) Wow, impressive.

    If no well, what do you do about water? Rainwater collection? I assume conservation is rather important, and you must have learned a tremendous amount since 89. I would very much like to hear your thoughts.

    With 512 watts of panel – how much battery do you have?

    Perhaps there are 3 types of people – those that will go in a bucket, those that refuse, and those that seem to actually enjoy it. : )

     

    Joel
    Participant

    Excellent information. Thank you!

    Wretha,

    2) Have you had good luck with Magic Jack and Google Talk? I am considering them or Ooma (top rated by Consumer Reports).

    As for cell phones, I switched to Consumer Cellular (also top rated by CR) and couldn’t be happier. They have a $10 plan, but the beauty of it is that you don’t pay in advance. If you use the phone more than expected, it will tell you when you are approaching your limit and you can very easily up your plan to match your usage, right up to the last minute and with no penalty or hassle. Very easy and all aspects of the service has been excellent. They use AT&T towers, which work very well in my current location.

    3) Is your mailbox at the end of a 6 mile driveway (so no mailbox in town)? If I understand correctly, if they can’t get through, UPS/FedEx packages stay at their main offices in town for pickup?

    4) What are your favorite news sources? I often seem to have a hard time finding concise and unbiased current news on the internet. Has having all your communications ‘eggs in one basket’ (the internet/wireless ISP) ever been a problem or cause for concern?

     

    Great info, thanks for taking the time to share!

     

    Joel
    Participant

    Thanks for all the detail, and thanks for including the costs – that is very helpful.

     

    It sounds like you have an excellent safety net Wretha. Here is the link for the cell plans:
    https://www.consumercellular.com/Info/Plans
    I can’t seem to get the chart to post, so here is a link to the data plans:
    https://www.consumercellular.com/Info/Services

     

    A guide to data usage. Your web usage will vary depending on how you browse the web. Web pages with lots of graphics use up your quota faster than text-based pages. Use this simple guide to estimate your web usage:
    20-50 web pages: about 1 MB
    100-250 web pages: about 5 MB
    200-500 web pages: about 10 MB
    Note: Our data service is perfect for browsing web sites and using email on the go. But due to the extremely large amount of data required to watch videos, stream music, or download large files, these activities are not recommended with our service.

    in reply to: Living in my truck for a year #67798
    Joel
    Participant

    Sounds like a fun adventure.

    Good idea using the gym membership. Of course, many restaurants have free wifi, and you probably already know about this – but here are a couple of sites that list out some less obvious places:

    https://www.wififreespot.com/

    https://v4.jiwire.com/hot-spot-directory-browse-by-state.htm?country_id=1&provider_id=0

    https://www.openwifispots.com/state_free_wifi_wireless_hotspot_California_CA.aspx

    Apparently, several California  state parks also have fee wifi.

    Make sure your vehicle is in top shape and be sure to carry some spare parts and supplies for it.

    Good luck!

     

     

    in reply to: temporarily MIA #67795
    Joel
    Participant

    The many foibles of modern technical devices…

    Good luck Beast!

    in reply to: #67783
    Joel
    Participant

    Welcome Patti.

    There is a knowledgeable group of nice and helpful people here, so start asking questions!

     

    in reply to: Where to start? #67733
    Joel
    Participant

    Like Beast said, you don’t just go to the woods and think anything is going to just work out. Living may be hard, but dying is damn easy.

    Assuming you haven’t done any real camping yet: A really good start – go camp in the woods for 2-3 days. Bring a tent, sleeping bag, plenty of food, everything you might need, (borrow it all if you have to, and camp where you are not to far from your vehicle and extra supplies). If that goes OK, go to the wilderness for up to a week. After that, everything will start to make a LOT more sense. You say you have close to zero experience, so if you have never even camped at a campground for longer then overnight, you probably ought to start with that. There is a good chance you will be really surprised at how it all goes, and I can guarantee a serious education will result.

    It takes a LONG time to become a Grizzly Adams type. Everything comes at a cost, exactly what that cost may be is usually not readily apparent. Start off by making sure what this is you want, finding out what you will put up with (you will probably surprise yourself), and what it is you can reasonably attain. It may or may not end up being what you want, but please take this easy opportunity to find out before committing to anything more than a few days of time and a few bucks worth of canned food.

    in reply to: New Member Introduction #67691
    Joel
    Participant

    “At a tiny home forum I frequent, one member with waaaaay too much OCD, actually counts the items in her tiny home and won’t allow the number to exceed 100.”

    That’s too funny. People impose the most arbitrary standards sometimes.

    Thanks for the advice. It sounds like you have made a very nice setup and everything worked out quite well. I don’t think I would have any trouble filling up several storage units, that’s for sure, but paying rent is almost painful to me. : )

    in reply to: New Member Introduction #67682
    Joel
    Participant

    Caver, I live in north Texas, and I guess I am not really asking anything specific yet. Really, I don’t care if I am on the grid, I just don’t want to be dependent on it. However, it seems likely that properties that will meet both my criteria and budget, will be off grid.

    Hi Beast. I would not classify my tools and equipment as materialistic bull nor garbage, but I think I understand what you are saying. These are things that have made me the money which has allowed me some level of freedom. Not insignificantly, they also allow me to build and repair virtually anything, which would seem to be handy in the scenario I am expecting. Honestly, this ability is also a part of the ‘spice’ in my life. My basic fab tools, mig welder and other things are very likely to go with me, but I have a lot of stuff and am not sure what I really need to keep. I don’t want to get rid of things, and later wish I hadn’t.
    To be clear, I have no desire for any more of a primitive life than circumstances (largely of my choosing) dictate. As you wish not to part with your PC, neither do I wish to do without an angle grinder and generator. I have been known to appreciate a dentist too on occasion, if you know what I mean. So, I currently don’t see any reason to completely abandon things that have served me well in the past, and may yet serve me better in the future.
    It would on the other hand, just be one hell of a lot easier to do what I want if my life fit in the back of my truck and trailer. 
     

    in reply to: New Member Introduction #67687
    Joel
    Participant

    Thanks Wretha. I thought I was in the Text tab. IIRC, I was looking for the ‘HTML box’ and got confused when i couldn’t find one. Thanks for updating the instructions!

    Cahow, Yes exactly. I guess a part of my concern is that I don’t KNOW exactly what I am going to need (and I have a lot of choices). There are many things that I really wouldn’t mind ‘doing without’, but I am not sure to what degree that would be a good idea. And as you noted, I simply would not be able to replace things that will have largely been sold off at bargain prices.

    I had not considered going so far north, although you point out that there are very real benefits to be had. I don’t mind the heat too much and definitely do like the other 9 months of mild and sunny weather in this area. I was born in Minnesota, so am not a complete stranger to the northern weather. Not as much a young man anymore either, being mid forties. ; )

    in reply to: Single women living off grid #67658
    Joel
    Participant

    An electric chainsaw works ok, nowhere near the power of gas, but they work fine for many jobs. A battery powered saw is not going to ‘cut it’ in your application. They are fine for light limbing and things like that, but there is just not enough energy available in a battery pack to even come close to meeting your requirements – sorry.

    Perhaps some tutoring and good safety gear would improve the situation? Chaps and appropriate steel toed boots are a very good idea, and a saw with a chain brake would surely raise your comfort level (if you are using an older saw with no brake).

    in reply to: testing .. see my question #67659
    Joel
    Participant
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