Episode-727- Tom Spargo on Rain Saucers and Rain Water Harvesting

Special Note – There is a segment in the beginning of today’s show about Jan Cline, a woman dying of bone cancer who has had her back yard yard sale shut down due to an idiotic city ordnance.  Please listen to it and consider donating a little bit to help Jan Cline out in this tough time. You an do that here, I have verified that this is a legitimate way to donate and the funds will go directly to Jan.

Rain Saucers are Stand Alone Rain Harvesting Systems

On to our man subject, Today our guest is Tom Spargo.  Tom  independent research and business development consultant to
major Japanese companies in the Silicon Vally clean technology industry.

Tom realized several years ago that clean water wasn’t getting any attention and started thinking about solutions.   Tom discovered rainwater harvesting and came up with his own take on the concept which addressed many typical rain harvesting shortcomings.

To address this Tom invented RainSaucers in 2009 and got funding from social venture capital in 2010.  He launched product this year and now has distributors online and in a few cities.

Today Tom joins us to discuss rain harvesting by the traditional method of roof hook up and how they can save on your water bill.  We then discuss rain barrels with RainSaucers and the new things you can do such as having a new source of potable water (they are trialing this in Guatemala) and setting up a completely off-grid tomato crop (Tom is doing this in my backyard).

Additional Resources for Today’s Show

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12 Responses to Episode-727- Tom Spargo on Rain Saucers and Rain Water Harvesting

  1. People should follow the code enforcement offical and document every time he goes 1 mile over the speed limit. Take that info and demand in front of city councel that he pays a speeding ticket fine for every time he broke the law. “The law is the law.” If this doesn’t work, do it for every person on city councel as well as the mayor. Give this info to the press.

  2. Thanks Jack for putting the info out on Jan Cline even though I don’t know her personally this is such crap no one should have to go through. She has enough to fight without BS from city officials. Any way donated $200 and have offered to bring stuff to her neighborhood so they can have a big ass yard sale at everyones house! In the front yard of course! That would be worth the 1 1/2 -2hr drive for me. Have passed all this info on Jan and your show to all I know. Just wish it was more. Ok now gotta go back and listen to Tom Spargo

  3. We just put up $100.00.

  4. Paypal donation left for Jan. Hmmm… my next tacticool nylon gear is purchase is going to be from JohnWillis!

    BTW nice interview Tom Spargo.


    Here’s another way to produce water that might be worth consdering.

    Terry Lebleu

    Texas Inventor Makes Water Out of Thin Air, Beats Drought

    A look at the patent shows the principle is merely water condensation, such as from a window unit air conditioner.


    If the machine is powered by solar power, wind power, whatever, the cost of operaton approaches zero (not counting water machine & power generator amortization).

    Leblue claims the machine can produce 0.74 gallons (or 95 ounces or 12 glasses) of water per hour.

    Folks who are handy with machinery can make their own from old (but working) A/C window units.

    I have no financial interest in this.


  6. Just sent Jan $100. Hope the rest of the TSP family can help out too!
    Great show Jack!

  7. Salem Oregon City Contact Informaiton:
    Administrative Services Director

    Administrative Services General Information

    Building Services


    Facilities Manager


  8. It took me awhile to fully comprehend this show I was a little distracted by Jan Cline. I have come back and given it the attention it needed. Water is most important. Wow what an idea! How much easier to water way out in the pasture. Now I won’t have to haul huge hoses every where. Plus I wont have to run my well pump that will save huge on my electric bill! It will also make it much easier to plant where ever I want without hauling buckets of water. This most defiantly would give me more flexibility and time by speeding up the process of planting. No more spending 2-3 hours a day watering new plants /trees. Plus if I set them up all over the property I can always have a quick drink or wash up where ever I am. Portable water stations how cool is this.

  9. Foxy Huntres

    So how much is the rain saucer? Just want to know the price, not ready to order so of yet..ty.

  10. A thought on the 275 gallon tote. The metal cage around it could be a trellis, or at least the base of a trellis structure. The first one I came across on craigslist was $75, and the dimensions are 40″W x 48″L x 46″H. Duel purpose water collection/trellis? Worth looking into in my opinion.

    Initial concerns are:
    1. Does the tank sit flush with the cage? Is there enough room for the tendrils to wind around?
    2. Will it block out too much sun on one side to take advantage of the space to grow something that trellises?

    Assuming the sale price for the tank, the price of the rain saucer, and say $10 worth of PVC pipe, the equivalent cost per gallon once full is about $.51. When compared to the drinking water store price mentioned in the show ($2/5-gallon or $.40/gallon) it would take a little over one full tank to then start paying for itself. I’d have to find out what that would be compared to municipal water cost, but using rain water instead of tap water would have to would certainly take a huge load off my personal draw on the system.

    Interesting to play around with. Thanks for the interview!

  11. At first the RainSaucer sounds like an awesome idea, and I’m sure it has it’s uses; however, at $55 each the “awesomeness” wore off quickly. At 4′ in diameter it yields about 12 sq-ft of surface area, whereas a typical 55-gallon drum yields about half that area. So, unless you plan on utilizing a setup of at least a few RainSaucers to funnel into a single rain barrel, I don’t see the immediate benefits. While I like the idea of avoiding rooftop water, I figure I could fashion something in a pinch as rainwater catachment (which is what I would use this for) and save a bit of money at that.

  12. LOL, I am dying laughing about the selective enforcement. I love it, you are so right and I love your presentation of it…