Backwoods hot glue gun

Since getting Internet, I’ve been getting crafty at the cabin.    I think I have enough food and art supplies to last me all winter.

I’m working on a project that needed a hot glue gun.   I found this recipe for  making hot glue with pine sap and charcoal.   I scraped some sap from some trees—I used pine and fir sap.   Then I fished a piece of cold charcoal from my wood stove, put it in a baggie and pounded it with a hammer.    I melted the sap on the wood stove, stirred in some ground charcoal, and I had hot glue.  It sets fast and it’s black but seems to do the job.     backwoods hot glue gun

The recipe called for about 1 parts charcoal to 3 parts sap and I believe that’s by volume, not weight, because charcoal doesn’t weigh much.   Also, I’ve read recipes that called for hardwood charcoal but all I have is soft wood and it seemed to work fine.

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Hermit, long distance hiker, primitive cabin dweller, seeker.

9 thoughts on “Backwoods hot glue gun”

  1. Hi,

    I’ve never had the courage that you or any of the people that I respect seem to have so much of. I just stumbled on your blog and have read just about all of it from the beginning.

    I don’t know how else to contact you, but I have so many questions.

    I have a fixation with security, and have put a lot of my goals farther in the future to get that security. In the mean time, I try to dissect all of the details of the lives of those that I would like to live.

    I am interested, more than anything, in how you got to the life that you have. You mentioned you left as a teenager–already more courage than I think I could bare. But I ache to know the details, like when planning for a thru hike, I am eager to know how you navigated, what challenges you faced. Those boring facts that are sometimes the most important!

    I would love to know how you got to where you are, what kind of job did you work before, what decisions did you make, and even now–where it is that you are getting the money, as small as you might need, to maintain your lifestyle. I know these are are likely irrelevant, it is perhaps more courage than anything else that allows you to live like you do, but I am very curious to know nonetheless.

    1. I worked on a paving crew for 20 years. I kind of just fell into that job and got stuck because nothing else I could do would pay as much. It wasn’t anything I was ever interested in, the hours were crazy and for the most part the men were awful.

      On my 40th birthday, I called in and quit to hike the Pacific Crest Trail. I had been dreaming about hiking the Pacific Crest Trail for 20 years. I read everything on it, watched the 4 hour “How to hike the PCT” Video 4 times. I studied Ray Jardines PCT book. I took a 78 day Outward bound class but they weren’t very good teachers. I just had to leave and hike the trail because it seemed to me, my life didn’t have anything to do with me at all. I really didn’t worry about anything because nothing seemed as bad as living a life on a paving crew, hoping someday I could retire and do what I wanted to do. I kind of knew that if I completed the trail, every thing would change and if I didn’t, nothing would. I had one moment where the magic drained out of the trail and I thought about quitting but I hitched out, got a bunch of food, hitched back to the trail, set up my tent in beautiful place and ate and slept and enjoyed the view for a day. The next day I got up, hiked my first 30 mile day and never had another thought about quitting.

      After hiking the trail, I asked the question, “What’s a summer worth?” I hadn’t had a free summer since I was 15 years old. I also know that you can work and save and the economy can collapse and all that hard earned money can be worthless. Also you can work and save and then die before you get to do anything you want to do— the biggest risk you can take is thinking you have more time.

      When I returned home, I went to Thailand. I wrote about what happen there:

      I sold my house in Portland and bought a cabin in BC. It felt I little like jumping of a cliff but I decided to quit dumbing down my dreams and go for what I wanted. I doubled my money when I sold my house in Portland. When I sold my cabin in BC, I tripled my money— so I made more money buying a waterfront cabin than I could have on that paving crew. Now I’m living in a cabin in Washington. A realtor just told me I could double my money again if I wanted to sell— I don’t know if that is true but for now I’m happy in my cabin. My only bills are property taxes–800 dollars a year, internet—612 dollars a year, and auto insurance–312 dollars a year. It’s pretty easy living. I’m getting my food dialed in with DIY Soylent—mostly oatmeal with some protein powder, supplements, and oil added to it. I have everything I want and know my happiness isn’t something I can buy. I really like the way I live. I have time, I have a view, enough food, art supplies, good backpacking gear, shelter, heat, a simple easy to maintain life, and so far, I have avoided having to go to work on a paving crew.

  2. I haven’t seen you at the co-op for a while–probably because I spend only a few minutes there each Wed. Liked your bio🙂 It takes a paving crew to really appreciate simple living. I’ll doubtlessly see you in town eventually. Maybe you’ll like my new book more than the last one. “Another End Time Novel” on Amazon.

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