From the archives

Truck is now locked

13 September, 2008: For obvious reasons I have not mentioned this here, but the truck arrived without any keys to any of the locks. This means my truck has been sitting unsecured on the road for the past few weeks. Luckily there’s nothing of value in the truck, but it’s still had me a bit uncomfortable at night. After receiving… Read More

From the archives

New rubber

13 September, 2008: The Utilimaster supply is great. On their website in addition to very helpful service manuals, they have a PDF of virtually every part of the truck. I replaced a bunch of rubber that was rotten and fixed the piston that holds the hood open so that it wont keep falling on my head. Read More

From the archives

Designing the electrical

11 September, 2008: I’ve hinted at this before, when covering grease conversions, but I’m faced with two conflicting goals: I’d love to do as many energy-smart things as I can on the truck I’ve got to keep the costs very low Today I spent some time on the electrical design. The low emission route would be to use the sun… Read More

From the archives

Clover, April 1

1 April, 2009: OK, so nobody ordered the Sausage, steak, ham, chicken sandwich. Thought we’d get at least one order : ) A little bit funny? Hope everyone had a great April 1st. The board is getting a bit smudgy, but it’s sort of pretty hunh? Figure it’s time for a new coat of paint, one of these weekends… Read More

From the archives

Irish plumbers

11 September, 2008: Greg Vaughn of Vaughn Plumbing helped me install the gas system. I think he did a great job, and once I track down the right regulator, we’re ready to pop a fryer, and possibly another appliance in there. Read More

From the archives

Latest truck design

10 September, 2008: Awning (click link for movie) John and Jinhee have been working overtime to realize our ambitions for the truck in very short timeframe we’re working against. John and I met up yesterday and after having doubts about our ability to pull off the transforming awning design, I’m really excited about the latest take. Read More

From the archives

Henny Penny fryer

10 September, 2008: A friend turned me on to Henny Penny fryers. They make normal fryers, but specialize in “pressure fryers.” These were developed primarily for fried chicken, and supposedly they do wonders for that. But they have other qualities that caught my interest: 30% lower fuel consumption 10-20% less grease on food More moisture and flavor retained in the… Read More

From the archives

A solution to Home Depot runs

10 September, 2008: You’ve found yourself stuck in the trap: you’ve got some sort of little project, and you find you’re spending more time driving back and forth to Home Depot than working. Well, I’m sure some of you have a level of experience and planning that allows you to get it right the first time, I don’t. So I… Read More

From the archives

First stage of counter preparation

8 October, 2008: The first step in preparing the counter tops was “production sanding” them. A production sander is something I learned about over at the Hobby Shop at MIT. It’s a cross between a sander and a planer. Basically it can take rough wood and make it smooth and create two parallel surfaces. This is a great machine for… Read More

From the archives

Tent poles

8 September, 2008: I’ve been talking to John and Jinhee (Single Speed Design) about awning designs. I’ve long loved the way simple tents look (see above), and we’re looking at these as possible references. Tetsuya Ohara, who leads up technical fabric and materials at Patagonia is kindly offering us advice. Tetsuya used to work for a sail maker, which is another source… Read More

From the archives

WARNING: This is going to be a boring post

5 September, 2008: … but if I don’t write it down I’ll forget everything. And I know this will be useful to others someday. I was always skeptical when people said things like “you’re going to have to deal with licensing” as though it was a huge hurdle. I was wrong. Here’s a summary of the city and state licensing… Read More

From the archives

LP tank installed

4 September, 2008: I’ve been having trouble with parking this week. Last week the truck was getting the ventilation installed. Next week the body work will take place. This week I’m babysitting. So I decided to pull into the Home Depot parking lot this morning and install the LP gas tank. I figured I had everything I needed (generator, etc.) and could… Read More

From the archives

This truck is vegetable powered

3 September, 2008:   For those interested in the details, here’s a quick summary of how these vegetable oil conversions work. Apparently the diesel engine can run on vegetable oil just fine, so long as it is (A) the right temperature (~150°F), and (B) doesn’t contain water or particles. It seems that (B) has more of an impact on the… Read More

From the archives

Mary making Clover’s logo

24 November, 2010: Here you witness the magic of our logo. It’s very simple. I’ve had a lot of people ask: “what is your logo?” We struggled with this question for a long time. What you see is very simple, but it went through a few stages. It’s a custom font, designed in vector. Then printed. and traced and re-scanned.… Read More

From the archives

Running on oil

3 September, 2008: Today I drove the truck down to Walpole, MA to meet with Mark at SVOlink (formerly alt energy oasis, www.svolink.com). Mark used to do vegetable oil conversions of diesel engines and now focuses on processing and selling vegetable oil. He took the time to show me his box truck conversion, his processing facility, and talk me through… Read More