Sunday, August 5, 2018

Well, that was a bit of a fail.

So,  for "Father's Day",  there were a few items that came my way,  one of which was a package containing two of these new fangled "copper cooking sheets"  for the BBQ. 










Now admittedly,  the Weber Q that I use is considered a "Grill"  as opposed to a BBQ,  but I figured I'd try out one of them anyway.

With pizza.

Hey,  there's a picture of them cooking pizza on the box,  so I figured it should work.  Right?

Meh.

Wrong.



It *looks* OK there,  but the bottom is getting burnt.  I had to quickly figure out how to get the pizza up off the grill a bit to sort of help it cook without completely charring the bottom,  so I used a ceramic pizza stone that I had stashed in the kitchen. 
We still ate most of the good parts.   The slightly *more* annoying part was,  this was a "home made" pizza,  which we prefer over most anything "store bought".

Oh well.

Hey,  maybe I'll try frying an egg,  or something...

Not sure why I'd do that,  and as for vegetables,  I already have a pan type of arrangement that works just fine.  I suppose if I had to do more than one thing,  and space was at a premium,  I'd whip out one of these sheets.  I certainly haven't given up on them just yet by any means.


Meanwhile,  the cuckoo clock repair saga continues,  and I think I've come up with a temporary solution.  Well,  maybe temporary in a more permanent way.  You'll see.

First of all,  I should mention that one of my daughter's friends/in laws needed some hair cutting practise,  as she's about to write her exam (there's exams for hair cutting??)  so after the word was put out for willing volunteers,  I figured I'd offer up my old noggin for some practise.



I used to do this sort of thing at the hair cutting class they used to have over at a local vocational school that one of our previous provincial governments in their infinite wisdom forced the local school board to close. 
A bit of a sore spot with me,  but whatever.

This of course,  was complete with a cuckoo clock tutorial. Because now I'm *so* qualified...*snort*!




And,  remember how I said that one of the local clock repair Dudes said that he never worked on cuckoo clocks in Germany,  and has carried on that tradition here in Canada? 
Well....I get it.
It's time consuming.   Like,  I'd have to charge more than a new clock would be worth.   Quite possibly including the cost to fly over to Bavaria and bring one home.

But I mostly looked on it as a challenge.  At least that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

So my "solution" for the bellows problem?   Well,  I stole a working bellows out of the clock that we have here in the house,  and installed it in place of the one that needs work.



You'll notice on the left side there,  that one of the bellows is missing?   It's one half of the "cuckoo"   sound.  So the little bird was only going "coo...coo...coo..."   Not ....OK,  you get it.

So I brought our clock onto the operating table to do a transplant....



Of course,   when these guys (Cuckoo Clock Guys?)  put these things together,  it seems there's a bit of randomness involved when it comes to installing the bellows,  as the screw hole for holding the thing in place was not the same,  so that was a bit of trial and error,  but the patient has been put back together,  is running,  and we'll see if it continues to do so for a day or two before being set free.

Fascinating sh*t innit??

As it's bloody hot out today,  we're off later for a "pool party",  but I've promised to not take along the camera.

Wouldn't be prudent.

You'll just have to take my word for it.

Thanks for stopping by.

Keep that stick on the ice.


Wednesday, August 1, 2018

My attempts at clock repair.

File this one under either "Rube Goldberg",   or, "Look Ma,  I'm a Neanderthal!"


I've never actually asked someone who repairs clocks just how they manage to hang a cuckoo clock so the weighs are doing their thing so as to monitor ones progress,  so I came up with this "stick method".

Of course,  I have no bloody idea why the thing actually quits after a very short time except that,  after listening and listening,  I determined that it was labouring at a certain point,  so I tried adding a bit more weight to the drive mechanism,  and that does seem to keep it going.

It's been running for a few hours at this point,  so I changed the clamp (read:weight)  to a smaller one,   and we'll see how that works.

Most of the stuff I see 'on the line'  simply shows replacing the movement.  Well,  not only is that something I'm reluctant to do,  but I don't have a replacement hanging around.

Oh,  and by the way,  this in not OUR  cuckoo clock,  although we have one just like it.  I think this is the "entry level" cuckoo clock,  as I know of at least three in our immediate family.  Well,  the family that came over from Europe that is.
No,  this is my sister-in-law's clock,  that she took down to do some painting,  and then the bugger decided to quit.  The question was asked if we'd take it to one of the clock fixer uppers here in town,  and he wouldn't even look at it. 

It went something like,  "I didn't work on cuckoo clocks back in Germany, and I won't work on them here."   (insert appropriate German accent)

If this seems to be the ticket,  I'll sort through some of my lead weights to see if I can come up with something a little more elegant,  with the knowledge that adding more weight to the mechanism might very well mean that it'll wear out in a few years.   C'est la vie.

I also noticed that one of the bellows for the "cuckoo" sound is kinda pooched,  so I might go so far as to try and fix that.  We'll see.

Meanwhile,  it's been a summer of the usual sailing/golfing etc.   With a ever so brief couple visits to a cottage up in Wasaga where the main activity has been building a shed for their bikes and tools.

I have photo evidence.






But first,  I should put in this one that was from July.   I could call this one,  "Old man with spectacles",  but it looks more like I'm having some digestive issues.




Anyway,  the first photo is from last weekend (oh wait,  that was July too,  wasn't it?)  But,  it's a little more done at this point,  and the openings at the top there are ready for some corrugated Plexiglas type stuff to let in some light.
On the wall immediately below those openings,  there will be a cedar shake detail to add some interest. 

 I had some left over from the shed I build for Daughter Number One.



Here we're doing a sort of "hands on"  evaluation of just how far three bundles of shakes will go.
There should be plenty.

I might not get to see much more of this,  as I'm not sure just when we'll get back up there.   No plans at the moment.


Exciting isn't it?

And you know.  I'd sooner do this sort of thing at a cottage,  than sit around all day.  I mean,  I *can* sit around and read etc.,  but eventually I get a little anxious.  Or bored.  Or....something.

I suspect my mind starts to wander to *stuff* I think I should be doing,  and then it's down hill from there.

Anyhoodle,  that's my missive for August so far.  I'll be back at some point I'm sure.

Thanks for moving your eyes back and forth.

Keep your stick on the ice.


Thursday, June 28, 2018

Say Good-bye.

Well,   the time had come. 



Out with this:



And in with this:








Travelling Companion and I had been thinking of parting company with the Mercedes for a while now,  and decided to pull the trigger a few days ago.

The thing is,  it's an 11 (2011),  not that that should be an issue,  but there have been a couple "issues",  shall we say?   And now that we had been problem free for a time,  we thought we'd 'get',  while the gettin'  was good.   So to speak.

I mean,  I've bought both new and used vehicles over the years,  and I'm pretty sure I've never dropped as much dough on a used vehicle (after the fact in repairs,  that is) as we did with the Merc.
I mean,  tires or a battery is one thing,   but the air conditioning compressor crapped out at some point a couple years ago,  thereby leaking fluid onto the serpentine belt,  meaning they both had to be replaced,  etc.

Then,  and this was before we bought the truck,  the damned thing wouldn't start one day,  and it turns out it had to go to the Stealership to have the "ignition module"  replaced.   Of course,  you may have noticed that folks who have Mercedes as their favourite vehicle,  always make sure to have two or three sitting in the driveway,  just so they'll have a backup when one of them craps out.
Had to rent a car for that one,  as they needed the car for several days,  and far be it from them to have a courtesy vehicle. 
I was not pleased.

The "new" car is a '15,  so it's not *that*  new,  but first of all,  it's a Toyota,  and secondly,  being somewhat newer,  it has a few gadgets that we did not have on the Mercedes,  such as a back-up camera and usb ports and such.  Kind of like the truck.

Now I'll admit,  the Merc was a great little car on the handling end of things,  but I suspect we won't be slaloming through any mountain roads any time soon,  so having a little softer ride with the Camry works for me.  T.C. hasn't quite come over to my way of thinking,  but I suspect she'll be OK with it in due time.

Oh and,the "4-matic" thing was pretty awesome in snow,  as long as you also had winter tires I suspect,  but I also think it was the reason our fuel economy never was all that great?

The Camry takes regular gas,  whereas the Merc took "high test".   I'd go as far as the mid-grade,  but wasn't willing to pay more.



So I mean,  if you were to lease a brand new one and take it back at the end of three years?  Well,  maybe that would work.  But we don't lease vehicles anymore.  Not financially sound,  unless you're running a business and it works to your advantage tax wise.   The other thing that we won't be doing anymore?  Getting another Mercedes.


I'm out.

Thanks for stopping by.

Keep your stick on the ice.