I finally broke down and bought a circle template for out in the shop - no more using flat washers, pocket change or chew cans to draw arcs and circles for me. The only thing is, the little Chinese guys didn't get the circles aligned with the witness marks on the template. I drew the first circle after lining up the marks on the template with my layout lines and something didn't look quite right. It's hard to see in the photo but if you make it bigger you can see four circles. There should be only two but after drawing a circle I turned the template 90 degrees and drew a second one just to see how much it was off. I drew a second one from a different row on the template and it was the same way. Thanks Mao.
It did work well enough for me to lay out the brake hanger bracket for the rear brake on the 900. Again, might be hard to see but the top two circles are not concentric due to the witness marks on the template being off. I'll just adjust things a bit when I cut the part out.
I went to an advisory committee meeting at the high school last week. It's good to see that the program is doing well. He's gotten some new equipment since I've left. The co-op director retired and the new guy is actually doling out the money allotted to the school like it should have been all along. One of the other committee members owns a local fab shop and steel supply. Once again, the biggest complaint is guys looking for a job but can't read a tape measure or set their own machines properly. Apparently, wherever they're learning to weld at hasn't bothered to show them how to set up a machine with the proper gas, voltage and wire speed settings. Some of the ones I get at the college, still can't read a tape. Of course, if you never learned it before leaving high school, when would you have learned it? We stress welding skills and just gloss over the academic side of welding. I'd like to see a little more blueprint reading, welding symbols, metallurgy, etc., but there's not enough time to embed it into the classes as things are now. I don't think I'm going to be there long enough to worry about it anyway.
One other thing that came out of the committee meeting was the fact that the school now allows the students to graduate early. It used to be extremely difficult to get out early, this being just one of the things that used to really piss me off. Now it appears that not only will they allow it, they encourage it to some extent. I was glad to hear that.
Winter weather has finally arrived. Cold & snow just like you would expect here in January and I start back to work tomorrow. I put some new tires on the pickup. Even though it's only 2WD, I got some tires with a more aggressive pattern. I rarely drive it anymore unless the weather is bad. I'll get a chance to see how the new tires work in the snow.