Year 13, Week 21, Day 0ne (week 697)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
92 degrees, blue skies with high feathers and mid level puffs, nice breeze. Some towers built over the Everglades but they marched west and almost out of sight.
We had a continuing week of wet weather all week. It was not constant as it was last week, but you knew you were going to get some weather in some areas of the county during the day. It was not predictable when it would come. Today was the first clear day all week. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.
DURING THE WEEK
Last Sunday, I picked up four large pork roast at a good price. Monday and Tuesday, I sliced steaks out of the meat. I took the poorly cut steaks, and carved the meat off the bone and ground them into burger meat using the meat grinder I got last month.
I mixed seasoning and filler and other stuff into the burger meat and made patties that I froze.
Wednesday, I started the bones cooking in the crock pot. Thursday, I removed the meat from the bones, stuck into the broth some other pork pieces and bones I froze up. On Friday, I took the meat off the bones and put all the bones into the crock pot and broth and cooked them over night, taking them out on Saturday. The broth is super thick with flavor. The best I have made. If I wanted to, I could have eaten some of the bones too.
I am well stocked with pork. I will have to ignore sales on all meat for about a month before I make enough room in the freezer, and ignore sales on pork for several months.
I am planning next week to make Lasagna, using my pasta maker, and using the cooked meat from the crock pot. Since I always modify sauces that come out of a can, this lasagna will be completely home made.
My uncle from Washington State visited for a couple days. We got together Friday night to visit with him. I visited his home back in the 90s and he has acreage with a machine shop and big equipment. He retired from building trucks, and went into a lawnmower repair business. I was fun to listen to my brother and him talk about machining, employees, and the region up there. We got some ideas on how to solve some little problems. It sent us into design mode.
At work, I have some plastic shelving above my monitor where I clip plans on. I have a clip with a bunch of rubber bands on it. I knocked one down and I remembered that one of the "belts" that came with the lathe was a really tiny rubber ring. That got me thinking about the idea of using a rubber band for a belt for the lathe. I selected several wide ones that looked like they might fit the lathe.
On the way home, I stopped at the dollar store and picked up some head bands, and two kinds of hair bands, with the idea they might be stretchy enough to work with the lathe as belts. I could not remember how much room I would have to work with so I got several different sizes.
We saw just a couple yard sales and they had nothing I could not live without. That meant we got back fairly soon.
I set up the mini lathe to test the items I wanted to test. I saw instantly that the hair bands I got were way too big. The rubber bands, even the stiffest ones were too stretchy. I would have to use really tiny diameter to even have a chance for them to work.
The thin hair ties had no grip. They just spun in place with no pull on the pulley. There might be something that could be done to the surface to get a grip, or even stacking a bunch of them together on the same pulleys.
The second type of hair band did not work when attached to the motor. Too much friction, I guess. I killed two of the bands connected to the motor. They worked nicely with the other pulleys though.
The reason these bands work is that they have exposed rubber dots showing in the weave. They grab on the metal pulleys giving traction.
No, these do not a great replacement for real belts. You do get a pack of twelve for a dollar and if they only last a few sessions before going bad, I am not going to complain about that price.
to the right are head bands. They were too long. On the left were hair bands that are too thin and slick to use as belts. In the center are the bands I used that work.
The bands in place on the lathe. the one to the pulley on the left broke after a bit of a test as that is the motor and it provides too much tension or something else and the band could not take it.
My motor started acting up again. It would run, then bog down and stop. While off, it turns nicely, but with the power on, it locks. I could get it spinning after some work but it hated working under tension after a very short while. It worked long enough to give my new belts a test, then I gave up.
A kitty cat had kittens in Mom's yard, back in the corner of the awning area. She was with her babies out by the well, so Mom and I carefully pulled everything out from beneath the awning. we swept the area out completely, then she sprayed bug spray over the entire area. We then put the equipment back. Some stuff got re-stacked or put away so we ended up with a little more room.
Mom hopes that the bug spray might kill some of the fleas on the kittens, or that the smell bothers momma kitty and she relocates them, possibly out by the wood pile.
Momma kitty with kittens nursing, taken last weekend.
Since the lathe was not working, I dug out the dremmel. My plan was on waiting until I had all the rods I needed made, before cutting the hooks into the wood. I decided that since it might be a bit before I can get the lathe running properly again, I decided to add hooks to the rods, making them into crochet hooks.
Completed rods photographed last weekend.
I dropped the dremmel and very slightly bent the metal cutting blade I was using. I tried correcting it but the wobble was enough to make too big a gap. I went to a regular cutting disk. The metal disk had a sanding surface on the face. I use the disk to sand the ends round or to shape before I start cutting. The regular cutting disk does not sand as well as the metal disk.
On a couple thin Mahogany rods, I went a little deep with the hook so it was too weak. I tested them and they broke with no effort. On one I actually had to cut it three times before I got a useable hook, which is why it is a whole lot shorter than the others.
finished crochet hooks. Left side are Mahogany, right side are black walnut. Center ones are bamboo skewers. The short skewer took many attempts to get the hook right. The short Mahogany hooks also required several attempts to get the hook the right.
I am not sure what I will be doing tomorrow. My brother is supposed to be up to haul away some sand. I would like him to look at the lathe motor and see if something simple can be done about it.
I will see what I actually do tomorrow.
Year 13, Week 21, Day Two (week 697)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
94 degrees, nice wind with strong gusts, blue hazy sky with some feathers. A few distant puffs showed on the far horizon over the Everglades but wonderful weather otherwise. A perfect day for celebrating Father's Day. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.
I got a late start today. I got to Mom's house later than I normally do. When I arrived, Mom was talking to my brother. He was on a job and was not going to make it up there.
I set up outside, bringing the metal lathe out to have a look at it.
Mom found a small fishing box with some tools in it when she was digging stuff out of the corner of the awning area. I decided to have a look at it a bit closer.
The box was in bad condition. One side of the shelving mechanism that makes them open and close when you lift the top shelf, was broken off the box.
I removed everything from the box and found that these were router bits, parts and tools. There were a couple wooden rods with beads glued into them. I instantly recognized that this went to Dad's duplicator.
The duplicator was a frame that had a movable attachment that the router fitted into. What you did was to put the work you wanted to copy onto one side, and then the block of wood you were working from into the other. you put a router bit into the router, and there was a follower rod that had an end matching the size and shape of the router bit. As you ran the follower rod over the existing work, the router cut away the excess wood of the work. When one side was done, you rotated the both pieces 90 degrees and did it again. When both pieces had been turned completely around with one bit, you then went to a smaller bit, with a matching follower. One could, if you wanted, to go down to pin sized router bits to get into the fine detail.
Usually what My dad did was to use the duplicator to horse off the worst of the wood and get the shape and proportions right, then he would hand carve the surface and details after that. It was a great tool to do several of the same piece.
Since the tackle box was shot, I dug out another box that I had, removing the screws and hardware stored in it. It started as a carving box, then became a parts box, then I had my dremmel in it for a few years, and then it became a parts box again.
The router box had a board on the bottom that had holes drilled into it for the router bits to slip into, holding them upright and apart. It was held in by two small screws. I drilled two holes in the bottom of the new box and screwed the board into place. A couple bits were too tall for this so they went into the tray.
Dad had a foam mat in some of the tray sections to protect the edges of the bits from the plastic. That was rotted, tore easily. I should do that for the new box but that can happen some time later.
The bits are protected again and in a safe place for now. I would use the duplicator to make something but I have nothing I care to duplicate right now.
I had made some crochet hooks out of skewers. One really thin one had lost the hook, broke off. I took a bit of time to replace it, going too deep several times. the trick is to not go too much over half way deep. it is an easy mistake to make. I went with a thinner cutting disk and finally got it right.
I gave all my new crochet hooks a spray of varnish, a sanding with finer sand paper and another coat of varnish. I did that mainly to bring out their different colors.
I now have to test these hooks to see if I got them made right or have to modify them to make them work perfectly.
I have a bug deflector on the front of my truck. During the repair process we did, I found out that it was cracked. I gave a temporary test with tape, but weather rotted the plastic of the tape.
This week, I took some LIQUID NAILS small project tube, and globbed that along the crack to see if it would hold it in place. It did. Today I dug out some acrylic paint I had and blended it with the black plastic. I then gave it a couple quick coats of spray varnish, mainly to give it the same gloss as the plastic. I should have shaved the lumps of glue a bit before painting it, to improve the looks of it, but the black paint helps it blend in some. it is not sticking out bad.
Liquid nails is sort of rubbery and I have used it to repair some rubber slippers. I have used it for some other quick repairs.
I am not sure what I will be doing next week. If the weather is nice like it is today, I will have loads of work to do. If it is poor, I have other projects in mind.
Of course, I have loads of other projects that need to be done and won't be.
I will see what happens next week.