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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
For a little while, I have been interested in getting myself a washboard. Especially after reading the book Lights Out by David Crawford, (I read the PDF one then bought the book) we will need to survive, live without electricity for a long period of time. Well, many already are finding ways to go off grid already. But water will be also be needed to conserve. Now a regular washing machine takes power, takes a lot of water. But a washboard needs a good tub, some water and elbow grease! A good way to start, let your really soiled clothes soak in the water, then place your washboard in the tub and start scrubbing. Not only will your clothes be cleaner than the washing machine, but you will use a lot less water, and soap as well. And the wash water can be used to water your garden afterwards. The ringing out part will be a little more tedious, but you will manage. Trust me!
 

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For a little while, I have been interested in getting myself a washboard. Especially after reading the book Lights Out by David Crawford, (I read the PDF one then bought the book) we will need to survive, live without electricity for a long period of time. Well, many already are finding ways to go off grid already. But water will be also be needed to conserve. Now a regular washing machine takes power, takes a lot of water. But a washboard needs a good tub, some water and elbow grease! A good way to start, let your really soiled clothes soak in the water, then place your washboard in the tub and start scrubbing. Not only will your clothes be cleaner than the washing machine, but you will use a lot less water, and soap as well. And the wash water can be used to water your garden afterwards. The ringing out part will be a little more tedious, but you will manage. Trust me!
Good idea..I have considered the 5 gallon bucket with plunger.
I use the cheap $1 and $2 detergent but splurge on the Purex 'bleach for colors'--just a tad in each load and I spray it on tough stains too-- and am stocking up on that every time I go to the grocery that carries it.:2thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Good idea..I have considered the 5 gallon bucket with plunger.
I use the cheap $1 and $2 detergent but splurge on the Purex 'bleach for colors'--just a tad in each load and I spray it on tough stains too-- and am stocking up on that every time I go to the grocery that carries it.:2thumb:
I use some bars of soap for laundry. At the dollar store they are still cheap, and last long. Also the slivers I put aside in a plastic container and once I have have that filled including also the soap we use to wash our hands etc make another bar of soap with the slivers. :)
 

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I have a washboard I purchased at a yard sale. I also have a industrial mop bucket with the mop sqeeze on the side for getting some of the water out. My outdoor work station consist of a large metal table and a huge double sink. I have a nice clothes line I have been using for years. As children my sister and I washed clothes by hand for our family of six before we got a washing machine. Not a fun job for children or adults but we had clean clothes. If you think you will be bored without tv and computers think again in a true SHTF situation you will be too busy with everyday life to be bored.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Are you washboarding all your clothes now?

Plunger delicates, washboard tough stuff! Ha!
I live alone, so my laundry is not that big, so yep, I wash all with the washboard! And hang the clothes on the clothesline, if raining or snow, I have a clothe drying rack in the house
 

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edirPsmaP
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I have the biggest plastic tub Walmart has for soaking and washing my clothes in. I have a LOT of laundry! :eek: I do the washing. I use a kitchen scrubby on the stains with a bar of Feltsnaptha (sp?) soap. Then usually oldest DS does the rinsing in 5 gallon buckets and then we have a commercial mop bucket for squeezing the water out. I use homemade laundry soap in my large bucket. I found that just using my hands or having one of the smaller kids walking back and forth on the laundry is easier than the plungers. I also have over 200' of clothes line and when I wash I like to fill that up!
 

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Seeking The Truth
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I use to put diapers and baby clothes in the bathtub after cleaning them in toilet,and stomp them clean 'STSOOT,then push them up against the back and stomp the water out,then rinse them the same way had the best looking legs in town.
I can't even imagine anyone in our family ever hawling buckets of well water,washing clothes by hand or bathing in the creek.
 

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I have had to carry and heat water to bathe in before at our old cabin-old artisian well that ran day and night into an old clawfoot tub(which now if I still had it would be worth a small fortune to a fancy smancy collector) would take two of the old galvanized buckets into the cabin and in small room(was supposed to be a bathroom if we ever ran electric) which had a shower stall and drain but no running water. the "bucket" john for middle of the night trips so ya didn't have to put your shoes on to go.
Heat one bucket add half to the third bucket and add cold water to temper it, use in shower with drain but no water! lol- wet down, scrub up, wash hair and then use rest of bucket warm water to rinse. extra hot water for extra rinse in case you missed a bit or like me use conditioner on your hair. Short and sweet but still clean.
If extra hot not needed for our "showers" our dainties went in the water we washed them and hung them up. And with 5 older sisters-plenty of dainties to be washed. Never ending water fetching and heating. Sucked being the youngest girl..
Deer camp was never boring with all us girls-just think-6 sisters, one mom and youngest of all was baby brother.. Dad running shotgun on all the "young" hunters that used to "wander by" our cabin.. lol;):D
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I have had to carry and heat water to bathe in before at our old cabin-old artisian well that ran day and night into an old clawfoot tub(which now if I still had it would be worth a small fortune to a fancy smancy collector) would take two of the old galvanized buckets into the cabin and in small room(was supposed to be a bathroom if we ever ran electric) which had a shower stall and drain but no running water. the "bucket" john for middle of the night trips so ya didn't have to put your shoes on to go.
Heat one bucket add half to the third bucket and add cold water to temper it, use in shower with drain but no water! lol- wet down, scrub up, wash hair and then use rest of bucket warm water to rinse. extra hot water for extra rinse in case you missed a bit or like me use conditioner on your hair. Short and sweet but still clean.
If extra hot not needed for our "showers" our dainties went in the water we washed them and hung them up. And with 5 older sisters-plenty of dainties to be washed. Never ending water fetching and heating. Sucked being the youngest girl..
Deer camp was never boring with all us girls-just think-6 sisters, one mom and youngest of all was baby brother.. Dad running shotgun on all the "young" hunters that used to "wander by" our cabin.. lol;):D
Wow, thank you for sharing that! this was truly an interesting post to read! We had similar way when staying at my Grandfather's he was a tightwad, but for good reason, his farm expanded and still all without power!
 

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Haha! I definitely thought this was about waterboarding at first... I couldn't imagine what there could be to debate!:D
 

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Seeking The Truth
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Haha! I definitely thought this was about waterboarding at first... I couldn't imagine what there could be to debate!:D
It is about water boarding.:).When I was younger most people had a scrubboard aka,washboard.
We used a ar soap called Octigon.It was brown and did'nt suds much.i think it was made of same product I now use on my wood floors and counters,Murphys Oil Soap an all natural cleaner that smells great and its cheap a dollar store.
 

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The wanderer
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I've been doing laundry by hand since we moved up here 8 years ago. We haul water or collect rainwater. We have two washtubs with a Hand-cranked wringer between them (Lehman's), and a "Rapid Washer" (also Lehman's) to plunge the laundry with. It does a fine job.

We had four kids still at home when we moved here, and they helped turn the handle of the wringer and feed clothes into it, so the big job of all that laundry wasn't so bad. Now its just my husband and I, and it's not a big job.

I have a washboard but don't think much of it. In fact I have two of them, a metal-faced one and a glass-faced one. I have the metal-faced one hanging in our outhouse (we have no indoor plumbing, either) for decoration, and I use the glass one on the rare occasions I use one.

For stains my method of choice is to get the item wet (pants, socks, dish towel, whatever), spread it on a bench next to our washtubs (which are outside built into a handy frame between two trees), and scrub gently at it with a hand-held scrub brush. If you push too hard you just bend the bristles of the brush and wear out the fabric.
 

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I am a little teapot
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Sue: First of all with everything else we have going on in daily life I don't think I'll ever be able to go to hand washing clothes (unless there is no choice) but your description of your setup between the trees intrigues me. Could you maybe post a pic of it some time when you get a chance?
 

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I have no problem with hand laundry--it's just those jeans--they are gonna be a bugger!!!:eek:

And we will be wearing the same clothes a lot longer around this house---and my neighbor(I use that word loosely) thinks the Amish/Mennonites smell---just wait till she smells me!!!:ignore:
 

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The wanderer
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Jeans aren't that hard to wash. I plunge them good with the rapid washer, then spread them on the bench and then give them a quick once-over with the scrub brush. Then I rinse them and drape them over the line to drip. I don't try to feed jeans through the wringer.

Here's my laundry room:



Jason, I wouldn't have had time to do our laundry by hand when I had a full-time outside job. I enjoy it now that I have the time, especially out there in the sunshine among the pines!

In the winter we use a 5-gallon bucket in the shower with the laundry plunger (Rapid Washer) and then run out and put it through the wringer! We have laundry lines above the woodstove in our cabin as well as on a covered porch and out in the yard among the trees, so lots of options for drying.
 

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Much obliged, Sue! That's about what I expected to see. Looks like a very effective setup.
 
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