Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Recipe For A Crazy Man.

It's New Years Eve and I'm sitting in my living room looking out the picture windows at the snow coming down. A perfect day.
I'm reading the Goliath Stone by Larry Niven and Matthew Joseph Harrington.
One of the characters, Alice Johnson, makes a statement: “I freely acknowledge that I am the sort of person who looks at those charming Currier and Ives prints and wonders how many inhabitants of the snowbound houses are, at that moment, being forced to resort to cannibalism.” As I read that line it got me to thinking.

As a child I remember mostly snippets of what happened around me. I seldom allowed for the feelings of others in my surroundings being more interested in how circumstances affected me. I was the baby of the family for four years. That may have focused my thoughts inward since if I cried or smiled everyone noticed and reacted to my behavior. Anyway....

My earliest memories are of living at Messenger Lake outside of Coldwater, Michigan. Messenger Lake was a marl pit dug out by the cement plant on the south end of the lake. The plant had used the Coldwater river to transport the marl in barges and as the pit was dug and the deposit was mined out the barges went on to dig out and form South, North, Cemetery, Randall, Morrison and Craig lakes before going out of business or running out of raw material at the Waffle Farm Campground north of Coldwater and just east of Hodunk. Since it was a dug pit, the ground on the shore of the lake was a steep bank.

We'll discuss most of that later but one thing sticks out. There was a heavy snowfall and the snow drifted behind the hills surrounding the lake. At the time the snow seemed really deep. But then I was 3 feet tall and a foot of snow was a huge amount. Mom bundled I and my two older brothers up in winter clothes. I'm not sure if it was snowsuits or coats and two pairs of pants. I seem to remember both being worn at alternate times. But I digress. We went out to a small ledge in the bank just to the west of the cottage. Far enough away for adventure but still within running home distance. The snow had drifted to completely fill in the area behind the ledge. In retrospect it must have been a fairly warm snowfall because the top layer had frozen into a thin crust and the snow had become packed to the consistency of Styrofoam. One of my brothers suggested building an igloo. We all agreed that that was a great idea and set about cutting blocks of snow and arranging it in a circle. I don't remember finishing the structure. I think probably lunch or supper interrupted the project. The main thing that sticks with me is that instead of panicking at the thought of deep snow we embraced it and set about turning it to our own purpose.

We moved sometime in the next year to a house on Crippen Street in Coldwater. There was a great deal to do and wonderous things to explore in the new environment. I was older and allowed to travel on my own but usually found myself in the company of one or more neighborhood children. We would fish or swim in the river and, being boys, would hunt whatever moved into our range of attention. The rule was you could never kill anything just for sport. If you killed it you had to eat it. Or at least attempt to. Frog legs roasted on a stick, fried pigeon, squirrels and half a hundred other experiments later we new pretty much what was catchable and out of that group what was edible after catching. We weren't ravenous brutes set upon a path of mayhem. We were an amalgam of backgrounds and creeds that had a common thread in adventure.

In 1978 there was a snowstorm in March. As snow storms go it was a respectable amount of precipitation. The thing that enhanced the experience the most was the wind storm that preceded it and followed it. After watching the house across the street disappear behind a drift of snow I and Lydia went to bed thinking that it was a good thing we went to the store that night before the storm hit.

I woke up to find that the houses across the street were behind a huge wall of snow but the front porch and most of the street right in front of our house was open. The back yard was another huge drift that reached the height of the roof but was separated from the house by a ten foot open spot where the house had channeled the wind and snow away. After digging out the back door I looked over at the hedge row and had an idea. I went out and cut down a couple of box elder trees that had clumped around the base of the trees. With the sticks and some clothesline rope I fashioned a set of snowshoes and had a great time walking along the tops of the drifts and looking down on the houses.
People who would have lived in the Currier and Ives houses would have grown up like I did. Rather than reverting to cannibalism they would be sitting warm and snug around the table eating chicken or rabbit stew. The world is a host of possibilities for the person with the inclination to look for them.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Installing A Quick Adjust Bench Vise Part 2 - a video tutorial by Old Sn...

The basement workshop in the new house had a bench along one wall. For the last two years I got along with using it while I finished up the honey do list. Most of the list is completed. We all know it will never be completely finished. Now that it's getting colder outside I'm working on some inside tasks. The old bench has been rebuilt and this new bench is next. Before I finished off the top I wanted to install the Quick Adjust Bench Vise. I finished it up this week.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Mounting the Basement Bench Vise Part 1 - a video tutorial from Old Snee...

The basement workshop in the new house had a bench along one wall. The only vise was a antique post vise fastened to the front of it. I got along with using it while I finished up the honey do list. Most of the list is completed. We all know it will never be completely finished. Now that it's getting colder outside I'm working on some inside tasks.
When I unbolted the bench vise from the old shop I expected to have it mounted and in use. Finally it is.
This is how I did it.
Old Sneelock

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Benefits of Christmas Shopping.

While Christmas shopping I ran across a nice looking Craftsman crosscut handsaw, a Buck Brothers Chisel, and 2 Jorgensen Pipe Clamps. The clamps aren't much to look at but the chisel and saw are pretty nice. The whole set cost $14.00.



Monday, November 25, 2013

A Method For Drying Turned Wooden Bowls

A question came up on the Old Tools List concerning preventing peach wood from cracking and checking after turning. The discussion worked it's way around to Steve Russell and his method for boiling wood to prevent such problems. After the usual rollicking and rambling amongst the denizens of the porch, boiling was given the Grandstaff stamp of approval and except for occasional flare ups peace came to the peach wood thread.

During one of the bouts of commentary, a person who felt the practice was beneath the dignity of the august body in attendance, remarked that boiling was to be considered equal to the heretical practice of microwaving wood to dry it. I can’t provide any insight on boiling wood but I did do a run of bowls that I microwaved.

SWMBO worked as the Marketing VP for a local zoo. The zoo was creating an Africa exhibit to go along with the giraffe exhibit they were building. They needed multiple bowls to be used as displays in the huts to be visited by the guests. Of course they needed them within a few weeks and dear SWMBO knew that I had made her a 12” sugar maple, salad mixing bowl. With the utmost belief that Old Sneelock would pull out another miracle she said I would be happy to help.

I didn’t have carefully dried turning blanks set aside waiting for such a project. Laminated bowls would not fit in the motif. I had few alternatives. I had read a magazine article about drying wood with a microwave and decided that this was the time to try it.

I went over to Mom and Dad’s woods and cut down a cherry tree that had gotten hung up after the last storm. I cut the trunk into approximately 20 pieces varying from 15” to 8” in relation to their diameter. After splitting I had about 30 usable billets. 

I turned the first bowl that night. After roughing the bowl to about 3/4” thickness I put it in the shop microwave. Yes I know, why did my shop need a microwave? That's a story for another day. The article said that I had to use low power and short cycles. If I recall correctly the microwave was 1100 watts and I ran the bowl through 3 or 4 cycles of 2 minutes each at the #3 setting. I think that would work out to 330 watts. I checked the bowl after each run and the surface didn’t get warm. The first 3 times there was moisture escaping the bowl and condensing on the glass plate of the turntable. After the 4th the plate was dry. I finished the bowl out, sanding and waxing it like I had the salad bowl.

The next day SWMBO came home and said the bowl was very nice. Too nice. They wanted bowls that looked like they were made by hand. Despite my protests that no self respecting turner would make ugly lopsided bowls, no matter where they were,  I finished out 20 of the least satisfying, ugliest, clunky, bowls I have ever made. I still dried them with the microwave. With the usual variations the process worked. Within the two week window, after some long nights, they were completed and delivered. 

In payment for the wood following the same process I made a bowl from the best chunk and gave it to my mother. When she passed I got it back. It’s holding apples in the kitchen. Still in good shape after 17 years.

A note of caution. During the rush to make ugly bowls I left a spigot on the bottom of one that was about 2” thick. When I microwaved it I ran it a little hotter and a little longer, without apparent effect. When I remounted it to turn off the spigot, there was a 1” diameter burned hollow in the middle of the spigot. I think if I had gone another few seconds it would have burst into flame when the pocket opened to the air.   

PS. When I visited the exhibit on opening day I couldn’t help but notice that there wasn’t a single bowl in any of the displays.
I haven’t turned a bowl since. I turn handles for myself. I even use the pretty ones.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Friday, November 15, 2013

Warning - Minor Rant

About 2 months ago a gentleman named Mike Butler posted the following on a friends Facebook page.
"Down with government!!!! Let's fire everyone. Let's start with firefighters, then police officers, then those who put on military uniforms and serve our nation as citizen soldiers, and while we're at out let's fire all the teachers and close all the schools, because what this nation really needs is more dumbshits out there who blame the government for everything they think is wrong with us.

Here's a radical suggestion--read the first words of the Constitution. it begins, "We the People." I am so tired of the negativity toward our nation. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying we should be silent when there are problems and concerns we must face, but come on folks sometimes we need to shut up and instead step up and be the "people" of " We the people."

Ask yourself, "how have you made your neighborhood better today? How have you made your city better today? How have you made our nation better today? Turn off "Fox New Complaints Everyday" and go do something positive for your neighbors.

Oh yeah, I forgot one thing, I'm proud to live in a nation that can elect a President whose name is Barack Obama"

I am never one to let a turd float in the punchbowl so I replied.

Mike Butler makes a point that we should just soldier on. I'm hoping he's going for the shock value of fire the firefighters etc. because that's looking at the wrong end of the problem. Rather than shouting that we should do patently stupid actions like firing everyone, close the White House to tours and serve cold dinners to men in the field, maybe we should just park AF1 and the limo for a couple weeks and serve bean soup to the several thousand support staff. That would save us 100 million or so. Drop half the IRS and pay them welfare. Instead of $80,000.00 a year to harass the citizens they would only cost $20,000.00. each. That's a savings of hmm.... just how many people would that be? 88,203/2 equals 44,102. Multiplied by $60,000.00 that equals $5,292,180,000.00 that's 5 billion with a B saved each year.

Since posting the response I have tallied up a few additional things that I can be proud to live in a nation willing to:
1. Figure out a way to harass and subvert any political opposition to the current regime. By using the IRS to audit the tax exempt status of any subset of the Republican and Libertarian parties the Democrats, under their fearless leader, have been able to stifle any attempt to defeat them politically.

2  Set up the worlds largest spying operation since Stalin. The NSA has spent untold billions of Black Ops money to be able to listen in and record every cell phone, internet, email, broadcast, or carrier pigeon message that anyone in the world would have need of. Freedom of the press? Not on their watch. Fox News doesn't play ball so we will have to sick the NSA on them. Congress too. They might be calling Fox News.

3. Close the national monuments. No small task as it takes far more people to keep the public out of an open air monument to the soldiers who fought and died in WWII, Korea, Vietnam, and the three current wars we are fighting in Libya, Afghanistan, and Syria, than it would to let the gates be open. Oh wait they had to put up gates to keep people out. The monuments were never designed to be closed.

4. Close the national parks. Yosemite, Mount Rushmore, Blue Ridge Parkway. Not only close them but block the roads so you can't pull over and see Mount Rushmore with binoculars.

It's late and I'm tired. Tired of wondering what this ragtag group of refuges from the 60's counter culture are going to cook up next. Maybe just something small like screw up health care. No Way. Not even they would stoop that low.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

A discussion developed on the Old Tools List concerning a problem one of the guys had.

From: Rstrainsr@aol.com

The items to be soldered are copper sheet and brass rod.
How does one solder without melting the adjacent seams?
Is a heat sink in order, if so, is there one that doesn't require  clamping?
Is using conventional supplies such as lead free solder and flux,
handiman propane torch typically used to sweat copper  acceptable?
If anyone can help maintain my status, I know its you folks.
Bowing and scraping in advance...
Bob in Ohio

James Thompson

A bare soldering iron doesn't transfer heat well. It needs liquid solder on it, and the liquid solder is what transfers the heat. The solder will flow easily onto a closed joint if the joint is clean and fluxed. Open joints require  you to add a little solder, wait for the heat to dissipate, then apply more solder, repeat, etc. Dress off any lumps later with a file or other abrasive.

And if you are making a continuous joint, do not lift the iron up off the joint when you are done with that joint. Move the iron back a short distance and drag it sideways out of the puddle. Sounds strange, but believe me, it is the right way to terminate a solder joint.

Troy Livingston
You might try Tix solder, almost the same strength as soft solder but
with a much lower melting temperature.

Taking a bit from both James Thompsons and Troy Livingston posts I have been in a similar situation in manufacturing and hobby work.

I used to work for Borg Warner at their Coldwater, Michigan plant. We made radiators and heat exchangers. Most of the work was short run and or prototype so the plant was equipped to build every part of a radiator, tubes, fins, header, frame, everything.

The tubes were soldered with higher temperature 40/60 solder. In other words, more lead in the mix. To keep from causing leaks in the tubes the headers were soldered to the tubes with 50/50 solder with a slightly higher tin content, and a lower melting point.  If there were repairs needed they were done with 60/40 a mix with even higher tin content.

Finding lead solder is difficult anymore. To prevent lead contamination, plumbing solder is now made from tin and silver 95/5. It has most of the desirable properties of the old 60/40 without lead.

The website below lists different non-lead alloys and their melting points.

Home experience has involved repairing a little galvanized bird house that SWMBO had purchased at a garden supply store. As always she had a plan for how the arrangement was to work and when the bottom broke free from one of them the plan was disrupted. With parts in hand she came out to the shop and asked if there was anything I could do. The bird house was 3” square and strictly ornamental. Using a large dual range electric soldering gun on low, I was able to heat the joints just enough to fuse the existing solder back together without heating adjacent joints to failure.  A quick overlay of 60/40 solder from my stash and SWMBO was ready to complete her plan.

37 years of marriage and now you know why. Happy wife, happy life. 

PS. When I go through smaller towns I always shop at the local hardware store. I occasionally find caches of lead solder because everyone is using the plastic and hose clamp crap now. My shop is a haven for out of date supplies and materials.

Dave N.
aka Old Sneelock

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Building A Woodworking Bench Step 1 - A Video Tutorial by Old Sneelock's...

Step one in building a wood working bench and another step on the path to having the blacksmith shop ready to use this winter.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Video Tutorial on mounting a blacksmith anvil by Old Sneelock's Workshop

I needed to mount my anvil so I created/rediscovered a secure method for mounting myTrenton Wrought Iron anvil to this massive log for use in my blacksmith shop.

I picked up the log at a farm auction near my home in Union City. I had arrived at the auction late because I was on my way home from work. The auctioneer had gone through most of the stuff and, as they usually did to clean up, was down to selling lots. By the time he got to the shed where the log was there was only the auctioneer, myself and two other guys left. With the intent of purchasing the small vise mounted on the log, I bid $10.00. I was the only bidder and bought the contents for $10.00.

I loaded the huge 4 foot tall, 33" diameter log by rolling it up a ramp made from some very heavy planks that were also in the shed. I also loaded up some glass gallon jugs, two  8" x  1" x 8' long boards that were shelves on the walls, and some boxes of miscellaneous junk.

Ryan and Lydia always liked to go through the stuff I brought home from the auctions. Ryan because he could get some cool toys or components for the latest thing he was building in his laboratory. Lydia because some of the stuff was cool and also I think a little to keep an eye on what I was dragging home.

While they were going through the boxes I unloaded the log using the ramp again.

I removed the vise that was lag screwed to the top of the log and gave it to Ryan. As I was pulling the screws I noticed the unmistakable odor of walnut. Turns out the log was black walnut, along with the shelf boards and the heavy planks. No telling how long ago the tree had been cut down but I'm guessing more than 50 years from the day I bought it.

The shelf boards became library shelves that I had the good sense to not mount permanently. When we moved they came with us.

When I brought home the Trenton anvil it wouldn't fit on the 12" diameter walnut log that I used to hold the 50 lb anvil shaped object (ASO) I had been using. To cure that problem, Lydia and I used my two man (1 man, 1 woman) crosscut saw to shorten the log and square up the end so I could mount the anvil on it.

That was over 16 years ago and the anvil and stump have supported a lot of forging over the years. With the new blacksmith shop coming together I hope to soon be forging more.

Dave N.
aka Old Sneelock

One-of-a-Kind 1980 Woodworkers Toolbox

The full extension drawer slides are fascinating. A stunning first project.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Compromise is settling for what works.

Between the mallets, sledgehammers, ballpeen and claw hammers, tack hammers, body panel hammers, and HSO’s I have most of the hammers I need.
One that I don’t have is a design that my father made 30 some years ago.
Dad was a maintenance man at the Midwest Foundry in Coldwater, Michigan.
With the building covering a city block and having spaces 80 feet up and 20 feet down from ground level, walking back to the tool box was avoided if possible. All the guys, I was one of them for 3 years, carried tool pouches. A large and medium straight bit screwdriver, a Phillips, and Quick Wedge rounded out the turning an prying tools, 420 Channelocks, 3 box end ratchet wrenches, a 12” Crescent adjustable wrench and for me a 5” knife made from a 10” mill bastard file with a glued on scale handle and one sharpened edge filled out the 12 pounds of load I carried every day.
You’ll notice there isn’t a hammer in the mix. That was a function of the 12” Crescent wrench. For really big jobs there were up to 20 lb persuaders both purchased and made. But for the day in day out tapping and occasional smacking around of various items the big wrench was the compromise between weight and function.
Many years after I left Dad was offered the position of supervisor and at the urging of family and friends he accepted.
Dad hated the idea of wrecking a tool unnecessarily. One day after replacing one more wrench with the jaw mushroomed into a rivet, Dad cut the face off of a 16 oz hammer and welded it to the back of the last wrench turned in. The next guy to turn in a smashed Cresent got the modified hammer and a lecture from Dad.
By the end of the day everyone of the 12 maintenance men had made one for themselves.

You know you're a Galoot when:  you have a favorite hammer.

You're possibly a Galoot when:  you own more than one claw hammer.

“Sometimes you just turn your boat around and row downstream. “
Bob Temples - 1985
Shipping Supervisor at United Technologies, Coldwater, MI

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Chainsaw Mill

I ran across a well detailed plan for building a Chainsaw Mill at TJ's Woodshop.
There's a link below. It is simple enough to make and uses hardware store items.
Don't know if I'll build it this summer but it's a definite start to a home saw mill project.


From <a href="http://www.woodweb.com/">WOODWEB</a>'s Knowledge Base: <a href="http://www.woodweb.com/knowledge_base/HomeBuilt_Portable_Chainsaw_Mill.html"> HomeBuilt_Portable_Chainsaw_Mill.html </a>

Sunday, January 27, 2013

No Worries Mate. It's a beautiful world.

James Thompson posted a comment on the Old Tools Mailing List that triggered a minor off topic rant so I went off list to comment. It made enough sense I shared it here on my blog.
"-----Original Message-----
From: James Thompson
Sent: Sunday, January 27, 2013 10:15 AM
To: Phil Schempf
Cc: oldtools@ruckus.law.cornell.edu
Subject: Re: [OldTools] Bow saw project
Sometimes I wish I couldn't remember when good ice cream was a nickel a scoop. How in the hell did it get to $2 a scoop? Inflation has a psychological effect on those who can remember it. I will not pay that for an ice cream cone, but younger people don't have my frame of reference. They have no idea that the price is an outrage.This same thing applies to most everything else we buy, including pins for bowsaws.
 See? Getting old is unpleasant. Let me count the ways..... :>)"
I agree completely with you on the appalling rate of inflation. In 1970, at the Midwest Foundry, working as a Class C millwright/maintenance/machine repairman 8 hours a day 6 days per week I made $11,000.00 a year. For a 19 year old kid that was good money.
At $9000.00 the government said I had paid all the Social Security I need to and stopped collecting it.
I could buy a top line Chevy pickup for $3000.00
I could buy a 15 year old 3 bedroom ranch house with a full basement in Coldwater, Michigan for $16,000.00
The following is from http://www.1970sflashback.com/1970/economy.asp
Cost of a first-class stamp:     $0.06
Cost of a gallon of regular gas:     $0.36
Cost of a dozen eggs:     $0.62
Cost of a gallon of Milk:     1.15
After 3 months I had earned the price of a truck.
With an additional 18 months I earned the price of a house.
In less than 2 years of working by the age of 21 I had all I needed to live in Coldwater for the next 35 years just as my father had.
Let's move 42 years into the future.
Fortunately my income has increased at a rate above inflation because I was able to advance to higher positions. If I hadn't wanted to go to school at night, move through 12 companies, and accept driving 150 miles a day for work I would still be working at the same level.
Today a Journeyman millwright/maintenance/machine repairman at my company makes approximately $37,000.00. Looks like a great increase doesn't it? Especially when we consider that is 8 hrs a day 5 days per week. Almost 3.4 times what I made in 1970. Say business picked up and they were able to work the hours I did. At 6 days per week and you add $11,232.00 per year. That bumps it up to 4.3 times what I made in 1970.
According to the Social Securities own website at http://www.ssa.gov/planners/maxtax.htm if I were still working at my original job I could stop paying social security at $113,700.00. That's 12.5 times higher than 1970.
I can buy a 2013 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 for $24,585.00 msrp. That's 8.1 times higher than 1970
According to Hotpads.com at http://tinyurl.com/bbcpc4x
In Coldwater, Michigan a 3 Bedroom house For Sale Median Price is $159,900.  Just a little less than 10 times higher than 1970.
Letters 1st Class 45¢ or 7.5 times 1970 prices. If you don't use a standard envelope there is a bad envelope penalty 20¢ for anything larger, thicker, or otherwise not a standard business envelope. That bumps it up to 65¢ or 10.1 times 1970 prices.

 As listed on Numbeo at http://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-living/country_result.jsp?country=United+States Gasoline (1 liter) is 0.98 $   Not to bad until you consider 1 Liter = 0.264172052637296 Gallons. That bumps the price to $3.71 per gallon only 3.79 times higher than 1970. 
Eggs (12)     $2.00   3.22 times higher than 1970
Milk (regular), 1 liter     0.99 $      Not to bad until you consider 1 Liter = 0.264172052637296 Gallons. That bumps the price to $3.75 per gallon only 3.26 times higher than 1970.
Water (1.5 liter bottle)     1.75 $     Water was free in 1970.
So what does this whole exercise end up with?
A kid today works 4 years to reach Journeyman. With the number of laid off skilled trades finding a startup position in skilled trades is next to impossible.
We'll just assume he hires in right out of high school at Journeyman level.
After 2.5 years of work he will have earned the price of a pickup truck.
With an additional 4.3 years he will have earned the price of a house.
After 6.8 years of work todays kid at 25 can reach where I was at 21.
If he can find a job.


Saturday, January 19, 2013

Salvaging a Wood Auger - a video tutorial from Old Sneelock's Workshop

Wood Plane Setup - a video tutorial from Old Sneelock's Workshop

Ford 8N and the Hydro Hoe - Power Toys

Sharpening A File With Acid - a video tutorial from Old Sneelock's Workshop

Safe Operation of a Bench Grinder - a video tutorial from Old Sneelock's...

Sharpening a Cold Chisel - a video tutorial from Old Sneelock's Workshop

Saw Sharpening Part I Jointing - a video tutorial from Old Sneelock's W...

Saw Sharpening Part III Setting the Teeth a video tutorial from Old Snee...

Marshall Academy Carolers on the sidewalk in Marshall - Old Sneelock's W...

Using A Hand Tap a video tutorial from Old Sneelock's Workshop

Adjusting Hand Grinder Spindle Lash - a video tutorial by Old Sneelock's...

Sharpening A Hudson Forge Crosscut Hand Saw - a video tutorial by Old S...

Clean & Finish A Saw Tote - a video tutorial by Old Sneelock's Workshop

Saturday, January 12, 2013

If you don't use it you lose it.

I used to weld for a living but now that I only strike an arc every once in a great while I always have to weld 6 or 8 inches before I get back in the swing of welding.
When I was a kid making go-carts with my first welder I found that what we called bird s**t welds were caused by not having enough amps to melt the rod. The rod would stick and melt off but left the welds on the surface with no penetration. It looked like a bird dropping. I learned to increase the amps to ...... wait for it.....the settings on the box of rod and then it worked a lot better. 
In the garage there is a 120 amp wire welder, a 200 amp stick welder, an acetylene torch, a propane lead melting pot, propane torches, and enough blow torches to burn down Chicago. I haven't struck an arc in the year and a half since we moved.
I installed a new service in the garage last summer. Got to get the garage wired up for 220 volts to the welders soon.

Best laid plans.

The intent was to move and unload the truck, move the tractor into the garage, and replace the ignition switch on the tractor.
So much for planning. The truck won't start so I put on the charger. No truck means I can't jump the tractor so that won't move. I don't want to change the switch outside in the rain so I'll have to wait until tomorrow.
When the truck wouldn't start I went to Plan B. After straightening out the garage I cut down 2 scrub white maple trees in the front yard next to the driveway. After bucking them into 6 foot lengths I drug them around to the back yard near the compost pile by hand. Right no truck and no tractor.
Went shopping with SWMBO and when I got back it was raining.
Went out to the truck and closed the hood down to keep it dry while the battery charges.
There's always tomorrow. 

Plan for the day.

January 11, 2013 4:14 am.

It's supposed to be 55 degrees today.
The plan is to unload the 1/2 ton of crushed limestone from the back of my old pickup. The last 1 ton load I picked up in Richland sat just a little too long and ended up frozen to the bed of the truck.
Since I usually go to work at 5:30 am. I'm sitting here planning my day for when the sun comes up. Sadie is planning her day also. She thinks I should be playing with her instead of typing.
She's right.