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12-18-2011, 01:13 PM #31
Newsletter December 2011.
Dear Sea Gypsies,
Things are looking very Christmassy now, as the snow falls and we
prepare to delve into the forest on the hunt for the perfect Christmas
tree. Snow isnt quite at head-height yet, since its been a tropical
December. Today shows a toasty -10 on the thermometer. Woofers are
holding their breath, waiting to see some proper winter-conditions,
thus facilitating giant snowmen, igloo-building, skiing, and perhaps a
model sailing ship crafted from snow and ice? Anything is possible on
This month however has been a sad one. Our friend and one of the
seagipsy family, Casper, died a few weeks ago. At almost 14 years
old, he was happy, eating many waffles, until the end of his life. We
buried him in a peaceful spot overlooking the raspberry patch. He was
a beautiful dog with a beautiful heart; we know many of you loved
Casper and he will always be remembered.
Other news is that, after a much-needed trip to the Canaries for some
of us for some serious sailboat spotting, we are back and working hard
to...yes, you guessed it, work of the roof which is now thankfully
finished! Otherwise we have been trench-digging, honey-stirring,
shed-cleaning and wall-painting, trying to finish everything that
needs doing before our beards and toes start to freeze. All of us are
itching to get back into the boat shed however, desperate as we are to
start sewing the sails, melting the ballast, carving the mast and
welding the deck...only a few more steps until our beautiful sailboat
is ready for her maiden voyage!
If you want to join our happy sea-gypsy tribe, feel free to drop us a
Have a good Christmas everyone, and remember to put out a big bowl of
porridge for the Fjosnisse. This gnome lives in the barn and he can
get cranky if he doesn't get his fair share at Christmas!
Pictures of the month
a: Finding a nice christmas tree in the forest.
b. two pretty mermaids painting the storage shed inside.
c. Casper, our beloved sailboat dog passed away this month.
d. and again, merry christmas to all of you from all of us!
- 12-18-2011, 01:56 PM #32
- Rep Power
Thanks for sharing your journey with us. I really enjoy your posts.
Merry Christmas!02-26-2012, 02:26 PM #33
Newsletter February 2012. .
Dear Sea Gypsies,
Spring is slowly coming our way, This winter has been really nice
compared to last winter. It has seldom been below -15, which is quite
out of normal.
We had a really nice christmas on the farm, with lots of friends and
seagypies. This year Santa Claus had an australian accent. We tried to
teach him the only one and important centence in norwegian - "Are
there any nice children here" but in last minute he forgot - but the
"kids" still got their presents. The small ones got proper
vikinghelmets and dress of course.... What else for seagypses?
Else we have been doing regular winter maintainance on the farm and
been looking forward to the spring. The boat project is going forward
working on small and big pieces on the boat. We have been doing some
work on how to make a furnace to melt all that scrap aluminum into
more useful stuff like portholes. Casting is not something new. People
have been doing thise for ages. Hopefully we manage to make something
out of brick run on propane or better firewood which we have plenty of
up here. Any foundry and casting experience out there?
Anyway, its quite busy up here now but dont forget to enjoy the early
spring folks! .. and if you want to join our tribe please contact us!
a. Enjoy christmas dinner with friends and seagypies.
b. A young seagypsy quite happy whith his christmaspresent - proper
c. Out walking the mast. Even a mast need some fresh air these days!
d. We want to duplicate these guys! Anyone with casting/foundry
experience out there? We want to learn!
d: http://weldingweb.com/attachment.php...1&d=133027410304-08-2012, 04:04 AM #34
Newsletter April 2012. .
Dear Sea Gypsies,
Still some time until we are ready to put the seeds into the soil. Its
more or less -5 degrees C during night last weeks but daytime is above
The days have been spent welding and welding and when we havent done
welding we have spent time troubleshoot welding machines. They have a
tendency to break down unfortunately. So we bought 2 more big
machines. We also got hold of another ton of lead. There seems to be
no end to how much lead we need for ballast.
Ahh yes. We got more chickens on the farm. one of our hens found out
we need some easter chickens this year and she missed by 2 days. Not
bad. The small one is a little shy so its hard to take a picture
without getting attacked by the angry mother.
Today it will be traditional easter-dinner here on the farm with
people from near and far. Wish you all fair winds and following seas
and hope you all have a peacful easter.
picture from last weeks.
a: our chickens are enjoying longer and warmer days.
b: two more welding machines arrived on the farm.. It seems we cant
get enough welding machines.
c: Our easter chicken arrived 2 days before easter.
http://weldingweb.com/attachment.php...1&d=133381355105-14-2012, 02:22 PM #35
Newsletter May 2012.
Dear Sea gypsies
Spring has come to the farm! And then came summer, and then a few
blustery days of fall, and finally last Friday and Saturday it snowed
again. But that will be the last snow of the year, we hope - the mild
weather seems to have returned, the trees are leafing out, the
wildflowers are springing up around the river, the bees and the
neighbors have come out of hibernation (again), and we are hard at
This week we mixed a few tons of lovely manure compost into the soil
of the north field, and planted eleven rows of potatoes - by hand -
which should give us about 300 kilos of potatoes in the fall to feed
hungry sea-gypsies all next winter. Next week we'll plant carrots and
onions, and move some tender warm-weather starts to our new greenhouse
- radishes, bok choi, spinach, parsley, beets, and sugar peas so tall,
they might start climbing us if we don't get them out of the kitchen
Work on the boat has really picked up recently. We've been distracted
with planting, and replumbing the bathroom, and building coldframes
and the new greenhouse - but now that the potatoes are in the ground
and the sea-gypsies are in the bath (phew), we are back in the
boatshed all the time. Our resident woodworker is about to start work
on a wooden dinghy from a traditional Norwegian design, just as soon
as he gets the greenhouse finished. And we cast two tons of lead
ballast, a very medieval process involving a wood-fired furnace in the
yard. The boat will eventually carry five tons, so there is more
casting to do as soon as the scrap yard has more lead for us.
Inside the boat we're sealing off the keel with aluminum plates - the
bow is nearly done, and then we can put in the last of the bow ribs.
In the stern, we're wrestling with engine placement - it needs to be
high enough to fit the cooling system and the primary diesel tank
underneath, but low enough that the propeller clears the stern.
Hmmmmm. Fortunately there's plenty to do while we're thinking about
it - like put on the deck! The boat will start looking dramatically
different very soon and we're all pretty excited.
As always, there's room for more in our big sea-gypsy tribe - so if
you like planting, weeding, shoveling, soldering, sawing, nailing,
welding, grinding, sewing, cooking, drilling, knitting, routering,
getting headbutted by chickens, watching 2-hour sunsets, measuring,
cutting, re-measuring, thinking, re-re-measuring, making bread,
reading sea books, eating waffles or knot-tying, drop us a line!
Picture from last weeks.
a: Sea gypsy girl making psykedelic chair-protection for the chairs.
b: Shaping wood with router
d: lead melting girl finished melting 2 tonns in one week.
http://weldingweb.com/attachment.php...1&d=133701506405-17-2012, 12:15 AM #36
Oh, to be young & adventurous.....06-14-2012, 02:28 PM #37
Newsletter June 2012.
Dear Sea gypsies
We're back to a full farm - the current crew of sea-gypsies hail from
Norway, Germany (times two), Finland, France/Belgium, the UK and the
US - it makes for lively, er, discussions in the evenings while we're
watching Euro Cup matches.
It also makes for rapid progress - in the last few weeks we've picked
the entire farm clean of rocks, planted two fields in a mixture of
cover crops (including phacelia, whose blue flowers are a favorite bee
snack), built and painted a fence around the yard, re-plumbed the
basement, fixed our fleet of bicycles, put in almost a kilometer of
fence around the biggest field, dug up half the far field looking for
a pipe leak, refinished a beautiful old door... and then, in our spare
time, built a model for the boat's dinghy, biked all over the area,
hiked down the river, spent a weekend in Oslo, foraged local plants
for dinner, built a campfire spot overlooking the valley, installed a
swing under the barn ramp, given each other mohawks, and baked about
forty loaves of bread.
And we're going to be parents! Kind of! One of our chickens has very
motherly instincts, and she's been incubating thirteen eggs - some
hers, some laid by the rest of our flock. We're expecting chicks in a
week or so.
All the farming hasn't left us much time for boatbuilding, but we
still managed to make some progress this month: the keelbox has been
welded shut in bow and stern, the last ribs are being bent to shape
and welded in, and the calculations for the curve of the deck have
begun. This week we'll finish the ribs and begin the wood patterns
for the deck frames.
We've been eating like royalty - everybody has learned to bake, and
the spring plants are out in force, so we feast on nettles, milkweed,
chaga mushrooms, dandelions, wood sorrel, and our own bread. After a
long winter of turnips, potatoes and carrots, it's wonderful to have
the green leaves that come with warm days, and the new dishes that
come with new comrades.
So, enjoy summer folks, and if you want to join us, just send us an
Pictures from last weeks.
a: Sea-gypsy girl busy planning the route with help of the world-map
b: Fence-banging guys!
c: The Fencing-crew on the way to the field.
d: Enjoy a short rest after hours of rockpicking in the field.
e: Welding up the keelbox inside the boat.
http://weldingweb.com/attachment.php...1&d=133961280007-09-2012, 03:16 PM #38
Newsletter July 2012.
Dear Sea gypsies
The summer has been good and productive to us. Mostly nice and warm
weather for whole june which is more than you can expect up here.. The
potatoefield and carrot field grow nicely. The sugar peas in the
small greenhouse is now blooming and soon we will be self-sufficient
on sugar-pies (that is, if we dont eat more than one pea a day each)
Mid summerday arrived with nice weather and as normal we had a the
traditional midsummer party sitting around the camp fire eating burned
marshmallows and dreaming about life out on the deep blue sea...
Talking about dreaming.. We have been discussing the deck curve for so
long that we started to get nightmares about this.. but in the end it
looks pretty good. The deck ribs are bent in, and we are in the stage
of plating the deck. Sofar the curve looks really nice! The deck area
will be around 40m2 totally, means we will have space for a hammock or
two between the masts!
Ok, that was all for this month,, if you fancy join our constantly
bigger sea gypsy tribe, please drop us a line. Whish you all a warm
summer and hope you enjoy our pictures below.
a: Mid summer party with camp fire and burned marshmallows.
b: British metalworker. Carpentry is for kids! Big boys only work with
c: Our french plating crew.
d: Two pretty mermaids (US/Germany) working on deck ribs. Hard hat is
mandatory when you work under the boat.
e: Fishing from the pier behind the boatshed. One of these days he
will hopefully get a fish!
http://weldingweb.com/attachment.php...1&d=134173366309-02-2012, 01:11 PM #39
Newsletter Late August 2012.
Howdy Sea gypsies
August has been a good one.... The weather was much nicer than july i
must admit. even some of those wwoofers start to complain about too
We have had quite an invasion from volunteers lately, and majority has
been from US, so now we have a distinct texas-slang around here.
Boatbuilding is going forward with the speed of light kind of... The
deck is on. The deckhouse is fixed. Even with the possibility to
remove to store big stuff inside. We are now working on
interior. Space for six bunk beds, kitchen and toilet/shower needs
We got some cool news lately. two volunteers (french/american) who met
less than one year ago here on farm, got married... even after
struggeling so hard to keep those girls and boys in separate barracks!
... some stuff must have been happening after dark... hmm. :-)
That was big and small news from our coolest sea gypsy tribe this
month. If you fancy joining us, please drop us a line...
Some pictures from last month.
a: happy volunteers eating lunch
b: Deckhouse is soon on.
c: two pretty mermaids taking care of the raspberry field.
d: forehatch girl cleaning up inside boat.
e: wedding picture...
Sailing the farm - a sea gypsy tribe of tomorrow.11-04-2012, 02:18 PM #40
Newsletter October 2012.
Our big accomplishment this month was getting the winter bathroom
constructed, insulated and piped - just in time for the first big
freeze to hit the pipes in the summer bathroom. (Just in time to wash
some dirty sea gypsies.) At the beginning of September, it was just a
dark, drafty hole in the corner of the barn, and now it's a warm and
bright room with heating, double-glazed windows, a fancy new
shower... oh, and two couches, a worktable, a bookshelf and our sewing
machine. We decided it was too big to just be a bathroom, so we made
the other half into a winter living room. (If showering in the living
room and hanging out in the bathroom sounds like a weird combination,
just think of it as practice for living on the boat.)
In boat news, the deck is on, the deckhouse is constructed and
suspended precariously from the boatshed ceiling, and we've started on
the sub-deck and the insulation inside the hull. There's a lot of
infrastructure to go under the sub-deck - tanks for diesel and fresh
water, a greywater holding tank under the shower, and 5.5 tons of lead
ballast. Last week we cast another 600 kilograms of ballast in our
evil-looking smoky wood-fired crucible - only 1.5 tons left to go!
We've been doing a lot of farm work the last couple months - fall is
always a busy season. We harvested those crops we planted back in May
- onions, carrots, and 300 kilograms of potatoes! - plus lingonberries
from the nearby forest which we made into jam. And getting ready for
winter is a big job - cleaning up heaps of scrap wood, burning trash,
raking hay, organizing the bee stuff, putting snow chains on the farm
equipment, ghostriding the old tractor into the barn, and getting
things stowed under roofs before they get lost under the snow until
spring. We had our first big snowfall last night - about 15cm, and it
looks like it's going to stick around. The official end of summer
time on Saturday means the sun goes down around 4:30pm these days, but
that just gives us more night hours to watch for northern lights.
Tomorrow is Halloween, and we're going to celebrate by dressing up
like boatbuilding farmworkers and stealing candy from passing
children. Happy winter!
Some pictures and movie from last month.
This is our house band.
The Who am I Blues - YouTube
a: Beware of moose on deck!
b: Harvesting the carrot crop.
c: Making jam from local lingonberries.
d: Fishing in the local lake.
e: Fall bonfire with guitar.
f: Making Swedish pea soup for lunch.
Sailing the farm - a sea gypsy tribe of tomorrow.12-30-2012, 02:22 PM #41
Newsletter December 2012.
First of all, Mucho Gracias for all contribution this year - This
doesent goes just for those of you who have been flying, driving,
peddaling, walking and swimming up here to lend a hand on the farm and
the shipbuilding - but it goes also to you who have send support
mails, commented on forums, asked to help sponsoring the project and
mailed us. Without your support, we would never have come this far.
We are now going into the last year of building the Seagypsy Boat #1
and hopefully start sailing. Yes, i know some of you think she will
sail only backwards, or even upside down, but sail she will.. .. :-)
Together we have come a long way taking into consideration that most
of volunteers coming up here have never done any metalwork or even
farmwork before, but they all share the same dream...
To sum up for 2012. We have used more than 2 metric tonns of aluminium
this year, welded hundreds and hundreds of meters of welding, consumed
a few hundred kg of Argon gas, melted 5 tonns lead. Not to mention
breathing way too much welding fumes and aluminium dust...
On the farm, we have had lots and lots of volunteers who has been in
charge of growing potatoes, sugar pees, carrots, berries and lots of
other stuff. They have got new friends and met old ones from prior
They have shared and learned, maybe eating too much porridge and
waffles, laughed, cried, made love (tough I really worked hard here to
keep those sneaky wwoffers in separate girls/guys barracks!!) :-) Some
have even taken step to marry! So in sum I think 2012 has been quite a
As we are nearing the end of this year (and not end of the world i
hope!) I wish you all a peaceful 2013 with much joy and happiness for
the coming year and we up on the farm really look forward to meet new
and old volunteers both here and out on the seven seas.
Fair winds and smooth sailing from
Sailing the farm - A Sea gypsy tribe of tomorrow.
picture: Boatshed in winter night.
http://weldingweb.com/attachment.php...1&d=135689130012-30-2012, 04:23 PM #42
- Rep Power
Thanks for the update.03-17-2013, 12:18 PM #43
Newsletter March 2013. .
Dear Sea Gypsies,
Spring is slowly coming our way, Its been maybe the coldest winter for
as long as people can remember up here. Minus -30 for weeks out and
weeks for january and february and even in march we have -20 degrees
for many days. But we dont complain (at least loudly!) the shed was
filled to the brink with firewood and during evening and weekends time
have been spent reading about small pacific islands where the sun
always shine... Guess where to boat is sailing!
Last two months have been spent doing foundry work (melting
aluminium). We are now making our own portholes and all small bits and
pieces out of the all the scrap alloy we have floating around. Next
would be to make a few dolphins for decoration :-)
Anyway, enjoy the early spring folks! .. and if you want to join our
tribe please contact us!
a. making a sand-cast for a small porthole.
b. Out enjoy the skiing in cold winter weather.
c. a cake? Nope. Its called cores and used for foundry work! Its a
miks of sand and linseed oil. Taste awful, but works good.
d. welding small boxes and stuff together.
e. Porthole production.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_y-Gh6_YI04-28-2013, 03:37 PM #44
Newsletter April 2013.
Dear Sea Gypsies,
The potatoes are planted just a few days ago. Thats even earlier than
last year. It a little risky since its still frostnights up here but
they are protected under a bed of soil so hopefully they wont freeze.
Summer is coming very slowly. Still no leafs on the trees, but the
small yellow flowers - coltsfoot (tussilago farfara) are starting to
show up along the roads. They are important pollen plants for the bees
this early in season (together with salix)
Sailing the farm have 3 nice girls now (irish,zchech,french). 2 guys
(swedish/english) who have been here the first part of april.
We have mostly been working on casting portholes for the boat which is
pretty timeconsuming. It means making molds, melting aluminium and
then shape the half-finished product in the lathe. The result looks
really good i must say.
Even if not even close to being foundrymen/girls or machinists we
manage to get quite a professional result after some weeks of trial
Thats enough for now, If you fancy joining the seagypsy tribe - just
drop us a line.
Sailing the farm
a. irish girl making sand-castles (sort of)
b. inspecting the casting results.
c. swedish sand-crab.
d. unfinished and finished result. (with the help of a lathe)
e. turning soil.
e: http://weldingweb.com/attachment.php...1&d=136713168406-01-2013, 11:14 AM #45
Dear Sea Gypsies
Summer is here, its more or less rain every day but the wwofers order
sun in the weekends so weather is always nice when we go hiking during
weekends, (not sure who they order it from though)
We are now up to full speed on boat and the farm. Last week we
planted another field of rasperries, which will be give us lots and
lots of rasperries in 2 years time. Then another field with potatoes
and even more herbs of all different kind. Its getting interesting
when the weed is coming up. It will be plenty of weeding soon.
The bees are busy collecting honey, and flying all over. they seems
pretty happy now after a quite cold may.
The portholes are more or less finished - that was a long journey. Its
quite a few steps. The good thing: which casting and machining skills
there is limit to what we can make in alloy. Plenty of blocks for the
boat is already on the list..
We are in the stage of insulating all over inside. Then make ready for
the wood deck and railings. The wood deck is not just to make the boat
look like a boat, but avoid burned feet on hot alloy deck in the
tropics - besides since we are faking everything to look lke wood, so
why not a proper wood-deck.
Lots of sea gypsies are coming next months, both returning ones and
new ones, but we still have some space, so if you have any skills you
think could be useful - drop us a line!
a: sorting out weed in the rasperry field. Then we planted out some
hundreds sq-meter more.
b: metal girls at work moving heavy alloy-plates.
c: casting stuff for the boat. We use sand to mould them.
d: welding guy busy welding up ears on the portholes.
e: dumpsterdiving. one night catch from the bin at the foodstore. Now
we go every weekend to stack up on free fancy food.
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