About The Off Grid Project

The Off Grid Project started out in a humble little camper out in the middle of the woods. I lost my job in January 2013 and then lost my apartment soon after. I moved into a dilapidated old camper during a blizzard. I originally had no light and no heat. I started making a video series of my experience on YouTube. You can find the beginnings of The Off Grid Project here: The Origins Of The Off Grid Project

About a year before that I had dreamed of starting The Off Grid Project as a side job. I was going to write a book on how to get off the grid for under $5,000 and make a DVD documentary of my work. I tried to start up a Kickstarter campaign but was denied. They said my idea was not creative enough. So I floundered around a bit and made some cool DIY videos which have since become huge hits on YouTube.

As I said, I moved into the old camper in the middle of a blizzard and started to make daily videos of my struggles. I had a lot of success and failures along the way. All of these made for very good video and my YouTube channel grew. I wrote daily blog posts back then of my struggles as well but long ago I ran out of time for blogging as YouTube took up more and more of my time. Now I run daily videos on YouTube, which has become my main daily job.

Through the past years I then moved into an RV which I cleaned up and renovated. This was my home for the next winter. I fared a little better in the RV than I did in the rotted camper. But winter was still quite cold and I woke up to ice on the water every morning.

In the fall of 2014 I began to demolish the old camper which was my first off grid home. This was both a happy and a sad time. The camper had served me well but I needed the trailer for the base of the tiny house on wheels that I wanted to build.

I worked very hard and, with the help of friends, managed to get the framing and roof on the tiny house in short order. In the next couple months John, a friend of mine, helped quite often and we got the walls up and the tiny house sheltered from the elements.

I spent the rest of the winter insulating the tiny house on wheels and working inside. I got kitchen cabinets built, put in a bathroom and a shower, worked in the lofts upstairs, got a cozy living room and much more.

Later I met my wife Melanie. Soon after we had a baby on the way so we sold the tiny house and moved to Michigan on an 18 acre homestead with a "normal" house. This was in order to ensure we complied with all the requirements for having a baby. A tiny house is in a gray zone in some places and we did not want the stress with a baby on the way.

During all this time I have constantly been improving my rain water collection, waste disposal, solar and wind power systems and gardens. I plan to be fully self sufficient within a couple years.

So... stay tuned and keep watching The Off Grid Project unfold on YouTube: The Off Grid Project Daily Video Updates

In the Off Grid Project you will learn how to get your household fully off the grid and independent from the power and utility companies. Never pay for electricity, water or sewer again.

With the rising oil prices, many people are looking for alternative forms of energy. Until now, alternate energy has been too expensive for most people. It takes about 20 years for solar to pay for itself. Wind turbines are very expensive and require professional installers.

We are tied to the grid.

Or are we....

Do It Yourselfers can get off the grid for a fraction of the cost of retail systems. You will learn how to become energy independent on a budget. You can have your own solar power, wind turbine, water supply, sewage, heat, hot water and cooling system - for under $5,000.

Or, pick and choose what best suits your needs and budget.


You will learn how to make your own solar panels at 1/10th the cost of retail. You will learn how to choose the correct batteries for your personal needs and how to hook them up at home. You will be shown how to choose the right power inverter and solar charge controller. And you will be given common household appliance energy consumption tables that will help you plan your own energy requirements. All of this will be shown in a simple to understand manner.

Some families may need to make a small adjustment to their daily power consumption in order to go off the grid on a budget, but these points will be covered as well. Also, how to set up energy saving devices in your home will be shown. And you will learn how to best hook up the solar energy for your particular needs.

You will be shown how to make a wind turbine from common parts that many of us already have in the home. With small changes to a standard AC motor, it can be converted into a wind generator. With a little bit of work in the garage, anyone can make a wind generator.


To be fully off the grid, you will need to have a fresh water supply and waste water disposal. How to set up an independent water supply, using rain water or ground water will be covered in depth. And how to make and use a composting toilet to convert solid waste safely into a useful, rich organic compost.


How to make a solar oven and a solar water distiller will be explained. These items do not need to be expensive, and the parts to make them yourself can be found easily.

You will be shown how to make various types of passive solar heaters to heat your home and water supply for washing and bathing. These pages will cover the design and construction of a rocket stove to heat your home efficiently with very little wood consumption. You can also cook and heat water with your wood stove.


How to use the earth to cool your home will be included as well. Learn how to set up a geothermal cooling system to replace power hungry air conditioners.

The Project

A 32 foot trailer in the woods was the original the scene for The Off Grid Project. The project started out with only a small, homemade 65 watt solar panel for light and to keep a laptop going.

A support forum has been set up to help you complete your own goal. We will be happy to assist you on the way to energy independence. The Do It Yourself World Forum

Note: for $5,000 (or less) you can go fully off the grid. You may choose to invest a little bit more, or less in some areas based on your own preferences and comfort level. You can also build up slowly, and expand, as time and money permit. You can simplify your life and get off the grid for much cheaper, if you want. You set the budget and goals for your own off grid project.

The off grid trailer only had a total operating and set up cost of about $1,000.

These pages will lead you every step of the way, and prove that you can get off the grid on a budget.

The project has been extended and will continue on.

So bookmark this page - read on - And Start Saving!