Sunday, September 22, 2019


I got the new sump installed on the sandblast cabinet. I was able to make it out of one piece, with just a little welding on a couple of corners. Rather than welding the new piece on to the blast cabinet, I riveted it. I fastened it on with Clecos first to make sure I had a good fit and so I could know where to caulk the mating edges. Pretty much used all of my Clecos. I should probably buy some more one of these days. I'm sure I'll be doing more sheet metal work in the future.

Finished sump all riveted, caulked and painted. It's a bit hard to tell from the photo but the white blob in the middle is the PVC pipe cap for the drain. I picked up some new hose for the pick-up feed but it's a little small in diameter. It's reinforced clear tubing, so I don't know if I can heat it up and get it to slide on or not. I'll get out in the shop and see if I can make it happen. It'll be nice if I can get the tubing to fit so I can wrap this project up. I've got a couple of things to blast.

I took the Missus to the hospital for some blood work the other day. Everything came back fine, so the cancer is still in remission. Good news there, by golly! She goes to the oncologist this week, but that should be a mere formality.

Friday, September 20, 2019


Sophia's birthday. If you don't know what the attraction is, you've obviously never seen Boy On A Dolphin.

Hank the First had a birthday earlier this week. He never had too many of them, unfortunately. The older I get the less important celebrating the day of my birth is. I just want to keep having them. I can feel myself slowing down a bit but I haven't kept up with my cycling and walking so that might explain part of it. I have been doing some strength training but I sure don't feel very damn strong after coming home from working a 10 hour day. I suppose there aren't too many people who do though.

Here's wishing all of you out there a happy birthday, whenever the day comes around, and many more in the future,

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Project Update

I made five of these over the weekend. It took me longer than it should have because I didn't have access to the prototype I had made previously. I was going to bring it home and use it as a pattern but the guy had it in his vehicle and was still on the road when I left Friday. The only thing left for me to do is stencil the company name on the tote and lid and they'll go into service.

The weather's been nice the last couple of days. I cleaned up the woodshop after making a mess on the company job and then started cleaning the main shop proper so I could finish the sandblasting cabinet.

I got the new drain outlet welded in and all the metal removed that needed to be removed. The new outlet is 1-1/2" pipe and is facing straight down. The old outlet was about half that diameter and came off the side - it was pretty close to useless. This should make changing the grit or cleaning out the sump much simpler.

I've got the new sump piece all ready to fasten in. Maybe get that done today. I need to mow the back yard and a couple of other things also. I did a little maintenance on the mower yesterday before I mowed the front yard - sharp blades, clean pre-filter, tire pressure check. About six more weeks it'll be time to put it away for the season. That sure won't bother me but it also means, as always,  I need to pick up the pace a bit to get a few more things done before the snow flies.

The power went out a couple of days ago and the new generator kicked in like it was supposed to. I'm thinking we might need it this winter - all the signs are pointing to a tough one.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

Rain Out

I was supposed to drive a late model stock car this morning like the one shown above. It was with the Kenny Wallace Dirt Racing Experience but it was a wash-out. According to their web site, there's another date at a track not too far away in October, if not, I can schedule something else for next season. I was pretty pumped about doing 10 laps in a real honest to goodness race car. Instead, Cuzzin Ricky and I did breakfast as long as we were up anyway and then headed for home. It's been a tough year for us with the races - lots of rain-outs. However, the Dirt Racing Experience also has a two seater sprint car. I think I need to get a ride in that thing next year as well.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Sofa Repair Man

While it might be a little hard to decipher from the photo, it's the bottom of a couch that's standing on end. It ended up where I work because the legs were falling off of it. My boss asked me if I could do anything with it. After taking the cover off the bottom, I was appalled by the construction of the frame. It appears to be put together with floor sweepings with a little bit of glue and a bunch of staples. I taught high school shop classes for 36 years and I don't think I ever saw anything as poorly constructed by high school kids as what this thing is.

I got one end squared away with a combination of lag screws, hardware store corner brackets, some bolts, and even a bit of angle iron welded to one of the leg brackets. I was just getting started on the end in the photo at quitting time but it shouldn't require near as much work since it hadn't been damaged like the other end was. I'll finish it up next week. I've also got another job for work I'm going to try and get finished at home this weekend. I'm only working two days per week but I've got enough work there to keep me busy damn near full time. However, that's not going to happen. The boss is looking to hire some more help but I don't know when or how that's going to turn out. As it is, I'll just keep on keepin' on for a while.

Monday, September 9, 2019

IMS Racing

And I'd be willing to bet about 99% of the population didn't use it either. But that's a story for another day.

Cuzzin Rickie and I went to the midget races in Indy on Thursday night for the BC39 race. It's a big attraction for midget racing fans and drivers with the show running for two consecutive nights. We went last year for the inaugural event and it was a miracle they managed to get the race in with all the rain that fell. This year it was a great night for racing with several qualifying races and a 39 lap main event. With all that talent out there the race was won by a 16 year old youngster who took home $15,000 for his efforts. They added 600 more seats for this years event and it looked to be pretty close to a sellout.

The Brickyard 400, however, wasn't even close to a sellout. The Missus turned the race on and I watched a bit of it before heading out to the shop to work on the sandblast cabinet. It looked like the stands were just about bare. Several sections had no one in them at all, and the grandstands by the starting line looked pretty sparse from what I could tell. I went to the first few races and it wasn't too bad getting around the first year but then they added another event the day before and then it was hard to find parking and took forever to get out after the event. It probably wasn't much tougher leaving after the race than it was after the midget race the other night, both events being held at IMS.

The race used to held in the middle of August and it was always hotter than hell. Now that they've moved it into September the weather should be better suited to sitting on aluminum bleachers for the better part of the day. However, with all the changes NASCAR has wrought, they've really shot themselves in the foot. I pretty much quit watching years ago when I tuned in to the Daytona race at the beginning of the year and sat through about of an hour of Jon Bon Jovi, Gillette razor flash cards in the stands and finally gave up after about an hour without seeing them turn a wheel and took the Missus to the movies to watch The Worlds Fastest Indian - that will give you an idea as to how long ago that's been. Then they went with "The Chase" and now they do some idiotic stage racing. And, of course, your Confederate flag is no longer welcome. I wouldn't be at all surprised if IMS lost money on the race yesterday. You damn sure didn't have to contend with a scalper to get a ticket. Just walk right up and lay your money down at the ticket booth - Plenty of good seats available.

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Gen Set

The crew showed up bright and early to install the generator yesterday. Installation took the three man crew about six hours. Everything looks very professional and I should be all set if we get a power outage. I had them put in a tee fitting to allow me to hook up a smaller propane tank in the event the power goes out when my big tank is low. I've got hose that came with my heater in the shop that will connect to the tank but I don't know if the diameter is large enough to supply the generator. I'll check with the outfit that supplies my propane and see what they recommend. I'll also put something down in the flower bed to set the tank on if I ever need to use it. I've got a 100 pound one for the shop and it's a bit much to move around. I might buy a 50 pounder just for the generator. Nice thing about propane is that it doesn't go bad like gasoline does.

One of the guys on the crew was a former student of mine. Sort of ironic that he was teaching me the ins and outs of the system. He did a fine job, though. Fine young man. Glad to see he's doing well.