Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

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Halfapint
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Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by Halfapint » Sun Mar 25, 2018 4:10 pm

The SO found out about root cellars and wants one. I'm not completely sold on the idea, we have a corner of the house that's below the dirt on 2 sides, thick concrete on 3, and a very thick insulated door. The issue with it is that it's small.

The issue I have with the root cellar is that there's no flat land around the house where we could dig one down. The part that's cleared is where the septic tank is at. However we do have lots of hills sides we could dig out and then put something like a large 6'-8' drainage culvert. The issue with the drainage culvert is putting shelves and other things inside. I was thinking about a large concrete box, however where it would go it would be very difficult to get cement into (for that matter moving a culvert would be hard). I've got a 3 bag cement mixer but then I'd be running back and forth with wheel barrows of aggregate.

Anyone have ideas? Something that might be easy to purchase and transport that could be buried and not collapse under the weight of dirt (so connex are out, lol)?
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by taipan821 » Sun Mar 25, 2018 4:47 pm

[YouTube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A3EAJex1RVo[/YouTube]

might not be similar to your situation, but should give you some ideas.

If I was in your shoes, I'd be looking at the culvert, the shape would lend itself for weight distribution. you could either put walls in and install the shelves to the wall, or just have some shelves deeper than others.
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by Halfapint » Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:13 pm

Cool idea, but damn...... $12,000 I could probably buy an excavator, concrete, make my own concrete bricks, and seal the concrete and buy a new gun or two for the same price. It's impressive but seems crazy to do for the cost. I mean just make a mold (mould?!) and pour concrete.

I watched some videos of people making their own concrete cinderblocks which for something small could be interesting. Just need a mold and could make my own bricks. would have to price out the cost VS buying ready made ones.
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by flybynight » Sun Mar 25, 2018 8:12 pm

http://extension.illinois.edu/tog/storing.cfm

I first saw this on another site and they showed it real traditional with just a hole dug with straw and then vegetables and then covered with straw and some dirt. I might have that article stored on one of my puters I'll check and post it if I find it.
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by boskone » Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:36 pm

Split the difference and berm it? Get an excavator or whatever to dig out about half the cellar's volume, build and seal it, then pile the remaining dirt back on? (More complex in practice, but you'd need to research local conditions and considerations anyway.)

If you can't/don't want to build from base materials, maybe SIPs? They could be shipped in and held at the depot, and you'd just need a truck and flatbed trailer.

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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by TacAir » Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:15 am

My FIL took an old freezer, pulled the door seal, lack and handle.

After removing the compressor and heat exchanger, he drilled several holes in the "back'.

I was buried 'face up' in the back yard next to the garden. When vegetables were stored, the top was covered with straw for added insulation. Check local laws, even with the door unable to 'shut' it may still be illegal.

We stored out spuds like described above leave in dirt, cover with straw. We called this 'pitting'.
https://lovelygreens.com/storing-root-v ... es-ground/

https://extension.illinois.edu/tog/storing.cfm
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by taipan821 » Mon Mar 26, 2018 2:08 am

Halfapint wrote:Cool idea, but damn...... .
could be worse, my local weather conditions make underground structures...ill-suited (currently getting ready for flooding rains)
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by Stercutus » Mon Mar 26, 2018 3:17 am

I was buried 'face up' in the back yard next to the garden.
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Pitting is cheaper than a cellar. Old style cellars tended to work but were prone to invasion by pests. That still is a way to go. How much do you want to spend?
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by Asymetryczna » Mon Mar 26, 2018 5:45 am

I recommend looking to Foxfire and The Farmer's Almanac in terms of worldwide web searching.
And keep us posted. Its an interesting topic.
With the links, posted blogs and comments this ought to help some:
https://www.almanac.com/content/how-build-root-cellar
It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by Zed Hunter » Mon Mar 26, 2018 9:37 am

Look at a basic surviveastorm shelter. Dual purpose.

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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by Halfapint » Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:10 am

TacAir wrote:My FIL took an old freezer, pulled the door seal, lack and handle.

After removing the compressor and heat exchanger, he drilled several holes in the "back'.

I was buried 'face up' in the back yard next to the garden. When vegetables were stored, the top was covered with straw for added insulation. Check local laws, even with the door unable to 'shut' it may still be illegal.

We stored out spuds like described above leave in dirt, cover with straw. We called this 'pitting'.
https://lovelygreens.com/storing-root-v ... es-ground/

https://extension.illinois.edu/tog/storing.cfm
I like this for the simplicity and can be done in basically a day. However talking with SO she was hoping for a "shelter" that we could use to store bulk foods and other goods in (when did she become a prepper?!?!?!). The property hasn't been well maintained in at least 10 years, and has been down right neglected for 5. The last year we've done a bit to help but still lots to do.

What's that have to do with storage? Well there's a carport that was dug out of the hillside and left, over the years rain and gravity has caused it to collapse around the lets of the covered carport. I could dig back a little further and convert that to the storage/root cellar. The problem is
Stercutus wrote:How much do you want to spend?
That's exactly it. I'm already looking at building a bit of a retaining wall to keep the earth back from collapsing around the carport. I could continue the wall and put a roof on it and complete it that way.

I wish I had some file sharing site to load some photos that worked with mobile (rarely am I on computer). I'd show you what I mean and what I plan to do. But like I said this is a LONGTERM project that I plan to do years down the line if ever, cost would be the big factor.
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Re: Root Cellar/Long Term Bulk Storrage

Post by Asymetryczna » Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:13 am

To add to the list of considerations: Groundfridge
https://www.weltevree.eu/ventures/groundfridge/
It's not what you look at that matters, it's what you see.
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