Living well off the grid |

Living well off the grid

Growing up in Nevada City, Mike Foxfoot noticed a lot of energy being wasted.

“I realized there were better alternatives than what we were doing, relying on fossil fuels imported from other countries.”

Foxfoot decided to be part of the solution and has been living off the grid in San Juan Ridge for the past 10 years, using solar panels, a vegetable diesel generator and a truck converted to run on ethanol.

How he does that, along with other alternative fuel uses, will be the topic of a workshop Foxfoot is holding at the Miners Foundry in Nevada City Sunday afternoon. Foxfoot is not looking to get rich, as half of the proceeds will go to Grizzly Hill School and the rest for the building rental.

“I’m providing awareness and trying to bring money to our schools,” Foxfoot said. “It’s really hard to get this out to the mainstream. There’s a lot of things that haven’t risen to the surface because of economic and political reasons.”

Through a slide show, video, visual examples and lectures, Foxfoot will explain how he runs his homestead and truck. He will also discuss his hydrogen cooking stove, fuel cells and vapor motors.

Foxfoot converted a generator to run on “veggie diesel, to supplement my solar power. I turn it on three or four hours every two days in winter, and in summer I can go three or up to four days (before using it.)

“It powers my battery bank,” Foxfoot said. “We watch TV and movies like everyone else.”

Foxfoot will also have his converted Ford truck at the workshop. It runs on ethanol that is 5 percent gasoline. Foxfoot said alcohol motors appeal to him because the fuel is so easy to make.

“Anything with sugar,” Foxfoot said. “Day-old donuts would do it.”



What: Alternative fuels workshop

Where: Miners Foundry, 325 Spring St., Nevada City

When: 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday

Cost: $14. Soup and sandwiches available for $10

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