Sunday, December 31, 2017

Hutch Update

 Earlier this month I made a post about a toolbox hutch I want to build. I've had the shell of this thing sitting in my shop the last three weeks and its been driving me nuts that I haven't had time to work on it. Yesterday after a half day of snow plowing I had the afternoon to putz in the shop. I say shop but none of the putzing occurred in there. I had a bunch of welding to do and I'll do that outside in the garage but not in the heated shop. The problem was that the temperature was zero. Ya you just heard me whine a little but really, who likes freezing their ass off?
 Cold sucks but how cold you feel seems to depend on what you're doing. Many of you don't mind a cold bike ride, skiing or snowmobiling but working in the same temps isn't much fun. Well this project is kinda fun so I was able to keep my mind occupied on things other than frozen feet or arctic denutification.

A sunny pic on a cold day.

 I had to work out some details for the rails of the roll up door. I was gonna build the tracks and just weld everything in place but then a revelation came to me. What if I had to remove the door or replace parts of the door? The design didn't allow for disassembly so the other day while I was taking a dump I realized what needed to be done. One half of the rail system had to be removable. After I built it I came up with another way to do it but its too late for that. No matter, the way I made it will work just fine.

 So this is where I quit for the day. The cold in my feet caught up with me as the vision started becoming a reality. Its really just all about getting the ideas out of my head. I know its just a simple roll up door but there are a lot of unknowns that can't be answered until they're tried. Will the door slide smoothly in the rails? How sharp of an arc will the door follow without binding? Those questions were tried and answered on the first attempt but if they don't work its kinda a deal breaker. I still have to make a stop on the bottom of the door, add a lock, lighting, power strip, a shelf, peg board and then wrap the whole thing in sheet metal. I'll keep you posted.


Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Awww, Nuts

 Sometimes things go as planned and other times ya can't catch a break. Yesterday I had a project at work that should have been as simple as tightening four bolts. Instead this will be one of those life lessons that somehow I've never been stung by before.

 What you see in the picture is the side of a stainless steel salt spreader. That pad is about 4" x 6" and is the mounting point for an electric vibrator. All I had to do was install the bolts and tighten them up. The bolts went in about halfway and started getting difficult to turn. I got that WTF feeling and tried to back them out. Nuthin doing. One twisted off. The second twisted off after applying some heat. I cut the third and forth off with hopes of welding a nut on and backing them out. Nuthin doing.  I drilled one bolt out and then broke off a tap trying to clean up the threads. You can see the broken tap still in there. I guess thread galling on stainless isn't uncommon but I've never had problems with it before.
 This morning I was gonna finish this post but I won't have time as the furnace in my shop is out and needs attention.


Sunday, December 24, 2017

Half Day Off

 I worked yesterday morning till noon. When I got home my wife and her sisters Terry and Brooke were at the house playing games. I had a plan to finish up a few things on the upstairs remodeling project then I'd have the afternoon to dink around in the shop. Maybe work on that tool hutch or even blow the dust off the BSA. Phooey. The women were having so much fun with their game and shenanigans that I decided to join in. Getting them to not act like knuckleheads for a pic was impossible and this was the best of the bunch.

 I guess I just need to lighten up, its Christmas!
 Merry Christmas everyone! I wish you all a safe, happy holiday.


Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Cat Toys

  I wonder if cats think we put up trees for their amusement. Thats normally the way it unfolds around here but our tree is up and the cats haven't destroyed it yet. Not a single ornament is out of place. There is no evidence of kitty kat tether ball, ornament punching bag or "sending" any decorations croquet style. I've knocked more ornaments on the floor just turning the lights on and off. Nobody is looking so I figured it would be ok to give Oliver a few scratches as a reward. I'll pet the kitty.

 Uh oh, denied. He shook it off. I suspect this spawn of satan just tolerates me until his evil plan unfolds. Maybe a gift unwrapping session while we sleep or a Mount Everest climbing expedition right before guests arrive. Hes up to something and the other cat is in cahoots with him. I know this is true because typically she would approach the tree like, "oh look at this, something shiny. I must swat at it and not stop till someone freaks out at me".

 I know that you know that I know you're up to something so just watch yourself. Don't look so grateful you old clump of coal. Frickin cat is grumpier than I am.


Sunday, December 17, 2017

This Week Photo Dump

  Sometimes I see things that I think will make a good picture and other times I see things and think WTF? Either way, my phone fills up with pics, most of which are crap, and I'll share a few with you before I delete them.

 What? Motorcycle related content on The Greasy Shop Rag during the winter months? Yep, thanks to some brave soul on a dirt bike. This pic was taken while I was fueling my warm truck. It made me wish I had acreage and a dirt bike. 

 Earlier in the week I was painting a hallway above a spiral staircase. Before I had textured the walls I was able to use my fancy new ladder that folds into a kazillion different positions. That won't work now so I had to use a brush on a stick. If there is any painting done in Hell, I'm sure some poor bastard is doing it just like this.

 If you look at this pic and just see two trains then I don't even know what you're doing on this blog. What I see are two trains hooking back to back to see which one can pull the other. If I were running one of those, this is the day I would get fired. BTW, the train on the left won.

 Git r done! I suppose there are a dozen ways they could have routed these snow plow control cables and this may not even be the worst choice but it sure looks redneck to me.

 And one artsy fartsy pic. With its warm glow it reminded me of one of those floating lanterns. I think if I had the time and ambition and even a smidgen of photographic talent I could make this an interesting picture. Since I have none of those you'll just have to suffer with this phone pic of a skid loader in a salt shed.


Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Snow Day?

 If things had gone as planned, I would not be posting this right now. Not because I didn't want to but because I forgot to write something last night. The weather prediction was for snow overnight and continuing all day. I was to come in early and start relocating the white stuff so people could better get around with their daily business. The storm tracked different and here I sit waiting for my regular start time to roll around on the clock. As I made my way around the internet as I usually do before leaving for work I remembered it is Wednesday and I need to make a post. The need to make a post is about me not wanting to slack off with this blog. I feel if I get lazy about doing it then maybe it will go away and I don't want that because its kinda fun to keep this journal of some of the crap I've been up to. My memory can be selective and sometimes I go back and read this and think "oh ya, I remember doing that" or "I could have done that a lot better". I realize nobody is gonna have a bad day if they don't get a Wednesday or Sunday edition of The Greasy Shop Rag.

 Look what came in the mail the other day. How long do you think I can go without removing the cellophane? That's the question I asked myself as I pondered what secrets might be written on the pages within. My curiosity got the best of me and I whipped out my pocket knife and sliced open the wrapper. The first thing I wanted to know was how many quarts of full synthetic I would need to purchase for my first oil change. It looks like I need seven of them and thats not a number I was expecting. The other day I was tagged on facebook with a chart of the most expensive vehicles to maintain and BMW was on the top of that list. I'm starting to see why.
 So far it has been a good car and the one day my wife drove "the ultimate driving machine" to work in slippery conditions she claimed it handled better than her "confidence of AWD" Subaru Outback. Maybe today she'll get another chance to try out its winter driving capabilities. She hates winter driving so I try to come up with vehicles that make that task easiest. I hope this one is a winner.


Sunday, December 10, 2017

Project List Update

 Based on the title of this blog entry I should just leave the body of this one blank. Because this blog doubles as my personal journal and your go to source for literary wit, I'll document it. Lets start with the BSA. No progress although I did get word from Dave, our nut and bolt supplier, that he found an oddball size bolt for me that I plan to use for an engine mount. He's still trying to find the acorn nuts I requested.
 The toolbox hutch I'm building is inching along. Although its still just the frame you saw in my last post there has been progress in the design...meaning I thought about it a bit and changed the roll up door track design. You should have just interpreted that as meaning "he didn't do shit on that project either".
 I told you about the bedroom remodel in the post called "Texture". Last weekend I borrowed a spray texture machine and blasted the walls in a second bedroom and a hallway. Because those walls are old school lathe and plaster and looked pretty rough I decided to open up the nozzle on the sprayer and not just texture the walls but actually blast them with a layer of plaster. Some areas look great and some look like ass but all the walls look 100% better than they did. The fact that I'm not posting a pic of them should tell you a lot. Its entirely possible we could meet our completion goal of Christmas for this project. That reminds me of something. I ordered a mattress from Amazon. I can just hear the delivery guy cussing about all the packages he has to deal with this time of year and some schmo orders a freakin mattress. I really prefer to buy local but it can be hard to find the time and its just way too easy to order crap from my recliner.
 Project Subaru is at a standstill but as you'll see in a later post I actually did work on it a few weeks ago. I won't tease you any further and you'll just have to wait on the edge of your seats for an update.
 The sportster fuel tank paint job hasn't happened yet. I still don't know what I want it to look like. Because my airbrush sprayer tank project hasn't moved forward either it may be a long time before we see any progress on that one.
 I still haven't gone back over to the other side of the garage to look at the Ultra and see if there are any more scratches from when I tipped it over. I'm too sick about that whole deal to even think about it.
 In other news, it snowed yesterday. First that means my riding season is officially over due to salt on the roads. Second, it means I got to plow snow for the first time this year. I like plowing and this light snow was a good chance to work out some bugs. The truck I run is an F550 with a SnowEx front blade that has power wings that extend to eleven feet. The truck also has an Ebling sixteen foot back blade that makes short work of these light snows. We removed the bed of the truck for winter and installed a Hiniker four yard spreader. Its not the ultimate plowing machine but its a pretty nice setup and I enjoy running it. There's talk of more snow on Monday. Bring it. If I can't ride I might as well be plowing snow.


Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Workshop Wednesday-Toolbox Hutch

 I told you about a toolbox hutch I'm gonna make for the top of my new roller cabinet. I had some time to kill the other night after work so I threw together a shell of what I think I want.

 Odd thing about this project is that I'm doing it without any real goals except to just do it. That means I'm just diving in head first and later after its done I'll wish I had thought it out better. Oh well, it beats sitting in the bar and getting all bent out of shape.

 I have this thing on wheels. I'm not sure what it is but when I got it years ago it was free and I decided I needed it. Hoarder syndrome don't cha know. My best guess is some type of file cabinet but it could be a feminine hygiene product storage container as far as I know. The point is that I'm gonna bastardize the thing and harvest that aluminum roll-up style door on the top. That door will be used as the front of my hutch.
 While surfing Amazon last week I found some under cabinet led lighting that I think will work great inside this hutch. I turned them on yesterday just to see how bright they were. It turns out these things have a remote control with variable brightness and some flashing and strobe features. For the life of me I can't figure out why you'd want a strobe light under a kitchen cabinet but maybe I'm just getting old.
 Updates as they become available.


Sunday, December 3, 2017

Tool Box Locks

 I had been thinking about picking up another tool box for work. The boxes I have now are getting crowded so after giving it some thought I had decided to get another bottom roller from Harbor Freight. These boxes had usually been priced around $369 or maybe $389 but on the day I wanted one they were $429. Screw that. The whole point of buying these is the price. I'd have to wait for them to go on sale.
 Two days later my wife and I were having breakfast at our favorite restaurant when my phone chimed. It was a Black Friday offer from Harbor Freight and among the items on sale was the box I'd been looking at. I showed it to my wife and she said, "I guess I know what you're doing today". That morning I picked up the box on sale for $349. Schweet.

 Having four different locks with four different keys is kinda a drag. I found a set of five locks keyed alike so ordered them from Amazon. Turns out that was $21 shot in the ass because the locks I ordered are physically the right size but are of the style that the key wont come out unless they are locked. Lesson learned, I'll look for the right locks. BTW, Stay tuned for a future post about the hutch I plan to build for the top of this new roller cabinet.

 In other news which isn't really news at all, my truck isn't the greatest but it gets me around for now. Sometimes it seems to have a mind of its own and yesterday while rolling through town the tailgate decided to open. I pulled over to shut the gate and noticed my Greasy Shop Rag sticker on the topper window is looking pretty sad. The ink is bleached from the sun and the edges are rolling up. Time for a new sticker. I have a whole box of them so let me know if you need one too.

 Don't worry Honey. You may be vacationing in Florida right now and left me to finish the plastering in the second bedroom and hallway but I've saved plenty of work for you. I hope you're well rested when you get back because there is a huge mess that needs to be cleaned up :-)