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Most of the time when we think of being green, we tend to think of solar power, or power monitoring, LED lighting, home automation, and so on.  Yet one of the greatest wastes of energy happens every day at our trash cans.  When we throw something away, in essence we don't just throw an item away, but we throw all the resources and energy away that it took to produce that item. 

One of the things I enjoy is to take broken vintage typewriters and bring them back to life.  These old machines are marvels of mechanical engineering, and some are still working after 60+ years of abuse and neglect.  Occasionally I will pick up an old typewriter that is too far gone to rebuild just to salvage parts that are salvageable.  The typewriter in the photo is an example of one that was too far gone to fix -- it had been stored where it was moist, and most of the insides were literally fused into one solid mass of rust.

I bought it to salvage the platen and a few other odds and ends, but for the most part the insides were beyond redemption.  This means that 30 pounds of precision manufacturing was now just a pile of rust.

After salvaging what I could, I decided to not throw away the 11 pounds or so of the cast iron body.  So, what I did was reassemble the body, make a new front panel (where the keys once were), put a plywood bottom in it, and turn it into an interesting flower pot. 

It actually made for in interesting flower pot, and 11 pounds of cast iron lived to see another day rather than adding to my city's trash.
Great gift idea for that writer in your life.
I love the way you think... and work. ;-)

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Bio: I enjoy taking a pile of junk and making something unusual out of it. I like wheeled vehicles, and currently own two motorcycles, two electric ... More »
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