Tuesday, June 21, 2016


There is nothing as boring as an Old Fart talking about his/her medical condition. But this Blog is also my journal so today I will do a short post on current and upcoming medical issues. No response or even others reading is expected, the post is so I have a memo to self.

I've been in AFib for the last three weeks, with pulse running steady at 100 bpm plus or minus about 10 bpm. BP has been inverse to pulse rate. I'm booked for an electroconversion Thursday. Still some debate if I will go through with it but whatever I've got to get back to a sinus rhythm.  For the last three weeks any activity kicks my ass. I ain't gonna live that way.

In addition a month or so ago I tore a biceps tenon in my right arm which in turn has aggravated the torn rotor cuff. Bottom line, once back from vacation (first of September) I'm going to face up to rotor cuff repair. I expect recovery will be six months to a year, during recovery I suspect I may turn sinister or at least learn to do a few things left handed.

There are not going to be many big projects in the near future. I expect most of my shop time will be sitting on the shop stool with a whisky or tea and looking at my tools. Once recovery is under way maybe doing some rust hunting and refurb.


I was working and missed posting about Juneteenth. June 19th aka Juneteenth is one of the most important but largely forgotten dates of USA history. On June 19th 1865 General Granger landed on Galveston, Texas with the news the war had ended and all men were free. For the first time in US history we started, with many missteps, to live up to the Declaration of Independence.

In a just and sane world June 19th would rank alongside July 4th.

I hope you'll had a wonderful Juneteenth.


Thursday, June 16, 2016

Motorcycle Update

I went by the motorcycle shop today to check on the status of the insurance on my 'Wing.  Not much has changed, their adjuster hasn't done anything at this time so my settlement is still on hold. They did mention they would make me a good deal on one of their used stock 'Wings.  I'm not too interested in another 'Wing, they are great bikes but my riding needs, if I have any, have changed. But during the conversation I mentioned that a couple of years ago I had tried to buy back the Kawasaki Vulcan 2000 LT I had traded in on the 'Wing they just burned to the ground and wondered if they still had the V2K.

To my surprise it was stored in a back room, dusty but still all there. I'm not saying I'm going to re-buy it but.....Damn I loved that bike much more than I ever did the 'Wing. The 'Wing is/was a wonderful tool, one of the best Iron Butt bikes ever made but it has no soul. The V2K on the other hand is nothing but soul, shiny in chrome and paint, with two coffee can pistons throbbing between your legs as you feel direct contact with the world and machine around you. Like I said, damn I loved that bike.

A few photos of her:

MsBubba on the V2K in a gas station Winkelman, AZ as I rode the V2K home from the dealer. I must say she wasn't real happy with me at the time. Like most women, too practical. Her question was: "Why do you need another bike, the one you have is perfectly good." Of course there is never a good answer to that question.  Later when she saw the 'Wing for the first time she said "Take that ugly thing back, I want my beautiful bike back."

A glamor shot near Gate's Pass:


A younger and thiner OKGuy near Winkelman, AZ:

Crossing the bridge at Lake Roosevelt, AZ:

Stop light in Globe, AZ:

One last photo, camping in the White Mountains:

There was one through the windscreen with the speedo over 100mph but No need to bore you more :-).


Wednesday, June 15, 2016

LN Replacement Iron Update

I've only the LN #8 left for iron replacement. I expect it will be done sometime but there ain't no hurry because it seldom comes off the wall. If I had a working brain cell it, the #8, would have been gone long ago. Metal jointers are just too big and heavy, after 15 or 20 minutes of slinging that sucker around the shop my body is crying no mas no mas where with one of my wood jointers I can work long enough to get something done and still function the next day.

Sorry for the digression, sometimes the fingers have a mind of their own. It is a pretty simple fix to route out the depth adjustment hole on the cap iron. I used a Drimel with a diamond bit taking just a small amount off before test fits. On most of the cap irons the fit was good after two or three tries.

I've worked the planes with the new irons and modified chip breakers and the feel is the same as a unmodified plane with LN iron. No more backlash than before, if you have LN planes and want to use other irons it is worth the trouble.

Here is a staged photo of my set up:


Sunday, June 12, 2016

Lie-Nielsen A-2 Plane Irons

A couple of years ago Lie-Nielsen stopped production of O-1 tools. I can understand from a bottom line standpoint but....There is that damn but again....Some of us really do not like to use A-2 cutters. I like the LN planes, they are very well made if a little heavy, I can live with heavy. Living with A-2 cutters, not so much.

So of course Hock and Lee Valley come to mind, they both make very good O-1and LV makes PM-11 irons as well, there is just one tiny problem. Both Hock and LV plane irons are just a silly mm thinner than LN's irons. That difference keeps either from mating with the LN frog. The LN depth adjuster has a steep slope and to mate with the cap iron requires a cutter of LN's thickness, other wise it will not let the cutter/chip breaker mate with the frog.

I've gone back and forth, sell all my LN planes but I like 'em except for the irons. Live with A-2 cutters, OK I've tried....It's like a bad marriage, you can make it work but is it worth the effort. What to do, what to do. I've had a Clifton iron on back order for months now (Its specs show it is the same thickness as the LN) but so for no joy.

I finally did a little red neck engineering and enlarged the depth adjustment slot on a Hock chip breaker and installed a LV O-1 iron with the modded Hock chip breaker in the LN #4. It works, the iron/chip breaker mate with the frog and there is little "slop" in the depth adjuster.

I'll live with the mod for a few weeks and if there are no problems the rest of the LN's will get the same adjustment.

Monday, June 06, 2016

This Is My Week To Post About Fire

You should never let the gods know your life is good, if they find out they will slap you around just because.

In the last week, my Houston renter of 15 years wrote he has bought a house and will be moving out on the 4th of July. I had wondered why I had not received May's rent.

Saturday I received a letter from the IRS, never a good sign if there is a return envelope included. It was not too big a deal other than they wanted payment plus penalties for the 2015 taxes I "owed". Humm....those were sent off April 7 and the check has cleared the bank. Turns out someway the 2015 taxes were credited to 2010 taxes which were paid in full a long time ago, 2010 to be exact.

Then this morning I called the motorcycle shop to see if there was any progress on my 2008 Goldwing's start problem. Their answer was I'll let you talk to the general manager. Also never a good sign. The general manager opened with "Your Wing almost burned the building down. The only thing that saved the building was our good sprinkler system." My question was, "I guess my Wing was destroyed?" Ended up the insurance adjusters haven't been out yet and they will get back to me.

Then of course as posted in an earlier post I had tried to burn my shop/house down with a BLO rag last night.

OK gods, I'm humble and my life sucks go slap someone else around. I'll hold your drinks.


Sunday, June 05, 2016

Burning The House Down

Damn Bubba you almost burned the house down. The shop was still hot from the day and I had it closed up so it wasn't cooling off. I'd wiped the tool chest lid once more with the BLO soaked rag before taking a short break for some tea and a cool down. I left the rag bunched and on the top of the tool chest while I cooled off. As I was going back to the shop I noticed a smell and my eyes were burning, it was stronger in the shop but there was no smoke. I looked around and noticed the BLO rag. When I picked it up it was very warm, unfolding it reviled black burned areas. Here is a photo of the rag:

I couldn't have been out of the shop more than 45 minutes to an hour and it was a single rag setting in the open. Normally once I finish with a rag I'll put it in a metal bucket filled with water until I can dump them in the trash but even that will be no more. If I am going to leave the shop for any reason finished or not with the rag it is going in the bucket and I'll make sure the bucket has enough water to cover the rags.


The Fat Lady Has Sung

The almost but not quite traveling tool box is finished. It took several weeks longer than I expected for that sentence to be typed. Whatever, the tool chest is in place with a top and a load of tools. For now it holds most of my wood stock and molding planes, some of the marking and measuring tools along with other misc. stuff. The shop wall cabinets have been moved a couple of times to make a spot for the tool chest where it will be functional and at the same time keep the old tool storage functional as well.

I'm not sure this is the final resting place for both the tool chest and the wall cabinet and tills but for now it seems to work.

On to the tool chest: The inside is unfinished Cypress, the outside is painted with red milk paint and the top is BLO'ed White Oak and Cherry. To my eye it looks pretty good even with all the mistakes and as best I can tell it will fill a shop need.

If it doesn't, the grandpeanut will have a big red toy box. A couple of photos of the chest in its new home:

And one with the top open:

We had a great Spring in the desert, wonderful cool, dry, nights and mornings with midday highs mostly in the mid 80's. While we knew it wouldn't last it was great while it did. Well Summer is here, I saw 108F on the truck thermometer yesterday and it is expected to go over 110F today. I'm starting summer shop schedule, Up and in the shop no later than 0400 work till 1100/1200, break for lunch, a quick dip in the pool, and a nap, back in the shop late afternoon/early evening for a couple or three hours. Life is good.