Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Workshop Wednesday-What's in the Pantry?

  As a little birdy, a storage shed must seem like a big apartment complex. In one corner we have some flimsy cardboard boxes that would be adequate shelter. There is also that big four wheeled condo unit but you prefer your privacy. Over in the other corner is a nice shiny snow blower that hasn't been disturbed all summer. It's a multi level unit with lots of storage. The engine seems like a nice place to take up residence. It's dark, cozy and out of the wind. The air box makes a nice pantry for all that bird seed sitting in the other corner of the shed.

  Then there's the lower level. More storage for bird seed.

 Behind that we have a large walk in closet. This is a perfect spot for your prized possession, bird seed. But here's the real selling point of this unit. It has a secret storage area hidden behind a narrow passage in the carb.  Lots of extra room for storing, you guessed it, bird seed!

 Ok, now before I start getting a bunch of comments about how this mess was created by a rodent, not a bird, I realize that. I'm not sure everyone at the shop that we showed this to was as wise. We like to play mind games sometimes.
 I also realize that it's highly unlikely a mouse squeaked through a narrow carb body. It's even less likely that one snuck past an open intake valve.
 What we have here is a case of a home owner leaving seed available to rodents. The mice filled the air box with the bird seed. When the owner tried to start the machine they never knew the problems they would be facing.  I don't know if the machine started for a second or if they just pulled the cord enough times to draw all this seed into the combustion chamber. There was even seed pushed past the exhaust valve into the muffler.
 Parts and labor will cost a quarter of the price of a new machine. Let this be a lesson. Take a moment to look over your motorcycle before cranking it up in the spring. A mouse nest in a muffler makes an interesting show upon startup but smells terrible. Been there.

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