Friday, February 17, 2012

And Let There Be Light

This weekend a task finally got done that has been waiting to be done for almost a year, at least since we got the Chicken Condo built.  Permanent electricity has been run to the coop.

It is permanent because it is run underground through conduit that has been installed.  This was required because when we had temporary electricity (several extension cords strung together between the house and coop) the neighbor's yellow lab decided that a couple of them were chew toys.  And no, the power was not on at the time.  I'm not sure it would have mattered to that dog.

It has been mentioned before, but it will be said again, it is so nice having a neighbor that owns an excavating company and is willing to loan you heavy equipment.  The request was put in and a Cat Skid-Steer was delivered to my driveway with a bucket and a separate trenching attachment.

Before the photo, let me explain that it isn't as easy as it seems.  First, you are trenching backwards, so you can't see where you are going.  Next, the skid-steer pushes at an angle when you are trenching, making it difficult to go straight.  And lastly, well, my day job is behind a desk.  Need I say more?

 The first path was from the coop, and I quickly realized I was not heading directly towards my target.  I also learned a bit about controlling the depth of the trench.  Lets just say I explored the limits of the skid-steer.  The second path was from the house towards the coop.  And finally, it took two attempts to connect the initial two trenches.  Basically I chewed up my yard pretty good.  But I did successfully miss the buried propane tank, so I call it a success.

The wires were connected to the house and fed through the PVC conduit.  One additional connector was needed to finish the connection at the coop.  In true Haphazard Countryman fashion, I didn't have all the parts for the project, so it was off to the big orange box.

As I was leaving the big orange box, the Middle Son called me to tell me to get home quick, it was snowing!  Looking at the thermometer in the truck, it was 49F and sunny outside, and we are only about 15 miles away. The boys must be playing a joke on me. I got about 3 miles from the house and the temperature plunged to 33F and I drove into a white-out!

It only lasted a little less than an hour, but it left a nice white layer.  It even thundered while it was snowing, which in WI where I grew up, means a big snow.

The snow was fun, but it ended my electricity project for the day.  The snow was mostly gone by the next day, and the project was able to be completed.  A timer switch was even installed in the house so we can set it to go on at dusk and stay on until a set time.  That will help next year during the winter to give the ladies some extra light and keep them laying all winter, hopefully.

1 comment:

  1. Our chicken coope had electric in it. Best thing we ever done. Timer is nice too.