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Old 02-01-2014, 09:54 AM   #21
tshiggins
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Originally Posted by Vaevictis Asmadi View Post
And I always thought it referred to the tupelo tree.

(SNIP)
Um, wow. I think that's right.

I know the honey from peach orchards usually brings a good price, but the tupelo tree thing is new to me. There's actually a premium varietal honey made from the blossoms of that tree. That's pretty keen. It looks like the hollow trunks of the dead trees were even used to make bee hives, at one point.

The peaches of Tupelo, MS, are well-regarded enough that grocers in the southeast usually label them to make sure people know that they're "Tupelo Peaches." I presumed the song referred to the honey made in that area, too, and I don't think that's right.

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Old 02-01-2014, 10:06 AM   #22
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Originally Posted by tantric View Post
While we're on this subject, does anyone know much about alternate means of making paper? I'm trying to work with crops introduced into Africa by 1000CE. My best options seem to be kenaf and banana fibers, but I can't find what kind of tech is necessary for these kinds of paper.
I don't see any reason you can't make paper by the traditional process from anything you can get a textile fiber out of. Well that and a sizing for good paper, but pretty much any starch will work for that. Bananas seem pretty reasonable.

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There are trees, of course, but African style acacia forests won't stand the kind of denuding that European and East Asian forests took (even given a non-destructive kind of elephant).
The modern papermaking process using wood requires industrial quantities of acid to get the fibers out of the wood matrix - we do it because tank car loads of sulfuric acid and chlorine bleaches are cheap *for us*. It's an industrial chemistry process invented in the mid 19th century, nobody makes paper out of wood before that.

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Since I'm also adding corn (brought from heaven via Jared Diamond), I also considered saying that a form of paper can be made from ground corn cobs and alchemically treated gum arabic. Is that even vaguely reasonable?
I dunno. What are the fibers in corncobs like? My feeling is cobs are too woody for you to extract them mechanically even if there are good ones.
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Old 02-01-2014, 10:13 AM   #23
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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I don't see any reason you can't make paper by the traditional process from anything you can get a textile fiber out of. Well that and a sizing for good paper, but pretty much any starch will work for that. Bananas seem pretty reasonable.



The modern papermaking process using wood requires industrial quantities of acid to get the fibers out of the wood matrix - we do it because tank car loads of sulfuric acid and chlorine bleaches are cheap *for us*. It's an industrial chemistry process invented in the mid 19th century, nobody makes paper out of wood before that.



I dunno. What are the fibers in corncobs like? My feeling is cobs are too woody for you to extract them mechanically even if there are good ones.
A lot of good paper comes from linen fibers, which are produced by the flax plant. That might be too expensive, though. The long fibers made flax a premium for clothing -- especially the loose weave desired in hot climates.

It's also, naturally, very pale in color, and white cloth was pretty tough to make, in ancient times (at least, that's what it said at the archaeological site I visited, in Spain).
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Old 02-01-2014, 01:38 PM   #24
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

Which is where the traditional rag man which bought or scavenged old cloth to be made into rag paper which was the high quality stuff comes in.
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Old 02-01-2014, 02:23 PM   #25
Vaevictis Asmadi
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

Tantric, is there any reason papyrus or a related plant cannot be cultivated outside its natural range?
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Old 02-01-2014, 02:43 PM   #26
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Tantric, is there any reason papyrus or a related plant cannot be cultivated outside its natural range?
Papyrus only works for paper in desert climates. Apparently if you use it in a damp climate it takes up water and goes all slimy fairly quickly.

If I recall correctly, the book on the Chinese printing industry that I read while researching mentioned the use of bamboo as a fiber source for cheap paper.

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Old 02-01-2014, 04:24 PM   #27
Vaevictis Asmadi
 
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

Slimy? Ew.

Didn't the ancient Chinese make paper out of silk? The Chinese silk-worm (Bombyx mori) is east Asian but sub-Saharan Africa has native Bombycids and Saturniids. Most Saturniids can be harvested for some sort of silk, even if the texture is different. Also the caterpillars are edible.

I have heard of paper made from bamboo, however bamboo is woody so I'd think it would present the same issues as tree wood. The main advantage I know of is its phenomenally fast growth rate compared to trees.

I buy paper that's supposed to be made partly from banana fibers, but I imagine recycled wood-pulp-paper is part of it too, and I have no clue if it could be manufactured using pre-industrial tech.
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Old 02-01-2014, 04:53 PM   #28
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Originally Posted by Vaevictis Asmadi View Post
Slimy? Ew.

Didn't the ancient Chinese make paper out of silk? The Chinese silk-worm (Bombyx mori) is east Asian but sub-Saharan Africa has native Bombycids and Saturniids. Most Saturniids can be harvested for some sort of silk, even if the texture is different. Also the caterpillars are edible.

I have heard of paper made from bamboo, however bamboo is woody so I'd think it would present the same issues as tree wood. The main advantage I know of is its phenomenally fast growth rate compared to trees.

I buy paper that's supposed to be made partly from banana fibers, but I imagine recycled wood-pulp-paper is part of it too, and I have no clue if it could be manufactured using pre-industrial tech.
The Chinese were making bamboo paper at TL4, a bit more advanced than when it was first invented, but not requiring industrial technology. I imagine bamboo is a bit easier to break down into fibers than wood.

Apparently silk was one of the original Chinese materials, but they also used mulberry bark. Cai Lun's biography says he made it out of "the bark of trees, remnants of hemp, rags of cloth, and fishing nets," which seems like pretty much any fibrous material could be put to use. I can't imagine pure silk would have been a suitable material, because paper was adopted as a less expensive substitute for writing on silk!

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Old 02-01-2014, 05:46 PM   #29
tantric
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

I was considering silk, but since there's native cotton, I'm not sure silk would ever have been considered. Plenty of bamboo, though. I sufficiently assured at this point that I can say it's made from bamboo and/or kenaf fibers with some form of alchemical additive derived from acacia gum and let it go. There'd actually be a fair about of vellum, too, but I suspect that would be reserved for special purposes. For that matter, there's plenty of papyrus and some form of alchemical treatment would work with that, too. Magic is the path to industry here, so it makes sense that an alchemical additive would replace various acids and bleaches we use.
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Old 02-01-2014, 09:12 PM   #30
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Default Re: [LTC3] Textile Crops and Beekeeping

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Beekeeping related material, hosted by a fan of the game world "HARN", is no longer available directly from the user's website (Andrew Staples), but is still available via Wayback Machine. I've embedded a link HERE for where you can find the Beekeeping material. I've also embedded in THIS link, the overall link to Andy Staple's web page because it has a LOT of good material relating to medieval Farming.
I was offering an opinion on how often the hive can be harvested, everything else we already have data for.

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The place to do some digging about the yields per acre for Hay is on this THREAD I started YEARS ago, but was based upon my dissatisfaction regarding Harnworld's pricing for Hay versus what I was coming across elsewhere.

If you want to take the time to find the various yields for various crops, I think you could probably do a search on my name and say "wheat" to find various posts that contain information I've gleaned over the years. One thread I found quickly enough was THIS ONE.
I was asking for FODDER yields, not wheat yields, so I doubt searching for wheat will have much effect
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