Monday, December 28, 2015

Need to start building the ark

It has been raining nonstop alternating between torrential down pours, to just a steady rain for a few days now. Glad it isn't snow, but this is beyond ridiculous. Called the roofer yesterday. I am far from amused. I have a wet spot on the living room ceiling. I went in the attic and it is leaking at a nail, which tells me it wasn't installed properly as overlap should prevent such leaks. I also saw a couple spots where they put the ridge vent in and cut too much board. I see tar paper. They better have someone here tomorrow. If I have to go down there, it won't be pretty. I put a board on the rafters and a small bucket underneath. It is a really small leak, but big enough to stain the ceiling.
I went and saw Star Wars. Thank God there is no Ja Ja Binks type of character in it. Movie was pretty decent. Saw it on the 3D screen. Matinee price was only about $6 with free bag of popcorn and $1 refills. Can't beat it. I debated if I should stand in the rain for a while so I could feel like those that waited in a long line to see it, packed like sardines in their seats. I shared the theater with three other people. Not counting the baby some thoughtful person thought to bring. Thankfully, they left when baby started crying. Got my dentist appointment out of the way. Once I get my permanent crowns put in, I should be done for a while.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas

Hope everyone has a Merry Christmas. Spike and I are relaxing. I just got back from up north, he just got back from the kennel. Good to see everyone, but it is also great to be back home again. My brother did a great job on his house and yard. Has more ambition than I do. Saw my son's new house. It is really nice. Had a great dinner there. Homemade dinners are so much better when you don't have to cook them. Had dinner at my cousins and saw all the relatives for the holidays. Homemade lasagna, doesn't get much better than that. Saw Og very briefly. He got stuck working for the week. We usually go hitting up the gun stores together while I am there. My brother and I kept up the tradition, just wasn't the same without him along. Still nice down here. May hit the range tomorrow for a bit. Want to try out the broomy. May head down to Whitaker gun store and check out their shelves. Would like to pick up some more ammo for a few of the guns. Merry Christmas all.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Thirty minute turn around, not bad

It took only thirty minutes from walking in to the dentist and driving back home. Two wisdom teeth left behind. Came out really easily. I can now relax and enjoy the holidays. It was easier and less painful than getting the crowns. I am so happy I changed dentists. They do it all.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Got a little ammo for the broomy

Found one box of fifty round for a civil price. The reloader I usually buy from was way out of the ballpark on price. He had high fifty round price on twenty round boxes of ammo. I know it is not a popular round, but I can acquire 50 round boxes at AIM for about $17. I am not paying over a buck a round for reloads. I will have to send them an ID and an ammo order. At least I got a little ammo for trying it out. Want to take advantage of the nice weather while it lasts. Precision ammo from Hobart Indiana showed up there as well. They had some odd calibers of ammo for sale as well. Said he was selling enough, he plans on setting up at all the shows down here.

Now, I am off to watch the geriatric group talk about what they are going to do to further damage the economy if they maintain control of the white house. Need to get those nasty guns out of the hands of all the subjects. Need to fix the global warming fantasy. Should be entertaining in a sick way. Also, how to allow all the illegals to flow freely. Have to have an increase in future demorats.

Friday, December 18, 2015

I made it

Vacation. Two glorious weeks free from the humdrum of work. Tomorrow, relaxation, and that is about it. I am wore out. Don't plan on doing anything at all. Probably go to the gun show at some point over the weekend. I do need ammo for my broomhandle. Monday, off to the dentist to get a couple wisdom teeth removed, just for fun and excitement. Still beats being at work:)

Head up north next week for a couple days. My son just bought his first house. Looking forward to checking it out. Visit with my brother and hopefully meet up with Og and the Og clan. Suppose to be snowless which suits me just fine. Go global warming.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

It was a decent gun auction. Not as many quality guns as is usually there. I did get my broomhandle though. Has a reproduction stock and leather, but that is alright, got it for a decent price. Need to get some ammo now. Have to check when the next gun show is. Guy at the auction told me that the reloader I buy from at the armory show stocks the ammo for it. The NICS check took forever. I would have waited for a couple guns towards the end, but they had already announced that the checks were taking about a half hour to call in. They can only call in five people, then they have to hang up and call again. Gives every caller a chance to be annoyed by a long wait time. Last time I waited until the auction ended, everyone emptied out into the call line, and it took a couple hours to check out. Nothing outstanding to wait for anyway. They had a few carry pistols I was interested in, but they went higher than I was willing to go. I lucked out and only had to wait about an hour total to get checked out. Room quickly filled up as I was leaving. Just in time.

In the seventies today. Go global warming. Obummer signed the climate change nonsense agreement. Eleven more months of his nonsense to go and counting down. Got the extra roofing shingles and extras stored away in the shed. Hopefully I won't need them. Drop the dog at the vets tomorrow for his checkup. If the weather is this nice, I may take the Vette out for a spin. One more work week to go. I guess my FMLA abuser is coming back after a couple month hiatus, just in time for the holidays. Should help out a bit as right now, I am the only one that can program the machines in my group. He should be able to get them through while I am out, if he remembers how to program them. I am so ready for vacation.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Two day weekend, and, the big gun auction is tomorrow.

Better still, it was bonus day today. They have a broomhandle at the auction with an new manufacture stock/holster and harness. It has been reblued,  so collector value is out the window. It still looks good and is in great shape. So far, the online bidding is low. Hopefully I can pick it up pretty cheap. The silent auction is lousy. Bunch of magazines for the most part. No full auto at this one. Do have some interesting pistols scattered through the event. The broomy is in the middle of the auction. Take my kindle along. I can follow the online bidding on guns I want, and do a bit of reading during the long bouts of plastic guns.
Sunday is spikes vet appointment. Other than that, I plan on enjoying the warm weather. Feels like spring out there. May hit the range for a bit with any new toys I may acquire. Hopefully luck out and have a pleasant journey up north for the holidays. Be nice not to have to contend with any snow. Go global warming.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

The roof looks awesome

It is complete and looks great. Already had a neighbor ask me about it. I get a hundred dollar referral for anyone who I send their way. I told the guy about it and told him I would split the referral if he mentions my name. I just can't keep a fee like that. They did a nice job. Shed looks great too. It will get a new coat of paint in the spring along with the shutters on the house. Did spend time picking the nails up out of the driveway.
So far, I am off this Saturday. May have worked my last weekend for the year last weekend. This weekend is the big gun auction. They have a broomhandle. Hopefully it doesn't go too high. It is bonus week as well, so Friday, I get another check, yeah.
My son closes on his house tomorrow. His first home. He is doing well. Found out I will be a grandpa next summer which is awesome. I am ready for the end of the work year... Only a week and a couple days to go.

Monday, December 7, 2015

I like my new dentist

I was told by the last dentist, I had to have all my wisdom teeth removed, my gums are bad and I need a deep cleaning that is in the neighborhood of about $1200 out of pocket. I put money in a FSA for this last year. It is running out as it won't roll over, and I have been working so many hours, I couldn't get into the daytime dentist, so, after looking around I found this dentist group. They are open until 7pm. They do almost everything. The dentist said my lower wisdom teeth are healthy, and located where they will not have issues once top wisdom teeth are out. They can remove them instead of me having to go to an oral surgeon. They will do it with a local so I can drive home. She also informed me my gums and jaw bones are not as bad as previous dentist made them out to be. She did recommend a multiple cleaning, but, it will be about $100 out of pocket total instead of the $1200 the other dentist wanted. She said the other dentist routinely recommends that routine to patients as they see it all the time. The money I put aside for the deep cleaning instead is going to take care of the extractions and a few crowns I have been trying to get done. I should be caught back up on everything in January. I need three crowns altogether. I can get two this year and max out my insurance just in time. I will do the third the first week of January along with the final part of the cleaning. I am quite happy with the new dentist so far. Be nice being able to get in to the dentist without having to use vacation time to do it.
Went in at 5AM to get the machines set up for the trainee. Nothing went right. The lathe didn't finish some of the dimensions they were suppose to, so, when I went to grind the tapers to fit the cores, the lathe turned taper hit and locked. Had to sent them back to the lathe group to get them returned.
Got one part back early enough to finish grinder set up and do a first part grind. Mold is due out the door Wednesday, and we still have a ton of work to do on it. I am hopeful I can get Saturday off. Big gun auction going on at the auction house. Only one full work week left in the year, and one of those days is going to be a half day so I can go to the dentist. Sometimes it seems even sitting in a dentist chair having a tooth ground to a nub beats being at work.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

One day weekend is over, back to the salt mines.

President surprised me tonight. I figured he would make a huge portion of his address to disarm the American public. Only a small part of his speech was about the bad assault rifle, you know the AR, what normal people know as the Armalite Rifle, not assault rifle as the gun grabbers call it. Odd bit is, gun control didn't work in California where the shooting took place. Doesn't slow down his rhetoric though. California leads in taking away peoples freedoms with every single "common sense" gun law Obama wants. Apparently, liberals can't figure out the terrorist love soft targets. If they hit up Indiana or Kentucky like that, someone in that group would have fired back. Most people I hang  around with carry, on and off the range. No, they pick California, where they can shoot until the police show up. Or France, where it is all gun free. How about England (remember the knife wielding radicals) where even the police are unarmed. Come on November. I don't care if it is Trump, I just don't want Hillary or Sanders, please......Be nice if all the people that bitch about Obama got off their butts and hit the polls. We could humiliate the democrats, but it won't happen. Many at work don't vote, but whine constantly about what we have in office.

Friday, December 4, 2015

New roof Monday

They are coming out Monday to reroof the house and shed. Added a ridge vent for a couple extra hundred. Should vent better as well as look cleaner by ridding myself of all the turtle vents. Have to hit the dentist up on Monday for some work. Been trying to get in forever, but no time off. Found a dentist with evening hours. I have a day time appointment to get acquainted, then get the evening ones lined out to catch up on some work.  Tried getting a personal day, but they are extremely busy and understaffed. I am the only one left who can program three of the CNC grinders, of which, we only have a total of five CNC grinders, so, I told them I will come in early and work a half day. Should be able to get them set up for the second shift guy to just run. Can't wait for vacation. Two more weeks. They are trying to push as much work through as they can while I am there. Be nice if they would follow through on their promise to hire some more help. We are booked solid for over a year out from what I understand. The plants don't like sending the molds out to any other shops to get rebuilt. They like our work, but there just aren't enough of us left to get it all done. Wish they would get smart and raise the pay and benefits. We lose help every time a major shop comes into town. Bad news is, the major factory that took a lot of our people last year is doing a major expansion. If I didn't have four weeks (soon to be five weeks in a few more years) vacation a year, I would think about going myself. I love what I do, and the machines that I run. Guess I just got comfortable here. If I can handle four more years, not only will I be up to five weeks vacation a year, I will hit the magical rule of eighty they have. When your age and years of service hit eighty, you get an additional one time allotment of four weeks vacation time to use anytime between when you earn it and you retire. Kind of hard to leave when you have twenty years under your belt.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Modern customer

Clerk: so what tires do you want
Me: I show ad with size and ask "do you have the white lettered"
Clerk: Yes, one side is blacked out, the other side is white outlined. Which do you want?
Me: thinking to myself, I asked for white letter, what do you think I want. What I say is " white letter out please"

After glancing over the paperwork and making sure they got the right tire and the right orientation, I catch the courtesy shuttle to my house. Five hours later, when they are due to close, I call to find out if I am going to get my truck back or not. They finally finish up and come get me. It is dark, raining and they are closing up. I am the last transaction. I pay, I go out and admire my nice blacked out tires. IDIOTS.............. It seems like any transaction I undertake anymore I get the idiots that just can't follow the simplest of instructions. It took them five hours to get the tires on the wrong way, I will not tempt fate and try and get them to correct the issue as I don't wish to be carless for another day. Still not as bad as sears. Took the Vette in there years ago and explained to the lead idiot that the tires and rims are directional and have arrows on them. Make sure they orientate them right. They only had one to do as it was a flat repair. Idiots got it on, backwards. Manager seemed put out and wanted me to explain how a round tire could possibly be on backwards. I showed the moron the arrow on the tire displaying rotation as well as the one on the rim. He got all apologetic and proceeded to have it fixed at a snails pace. I haven't used Sears since.

Got home and proceeded to fill out the rebate for a gift card. Don't lower the price on the tires, give a rebate you have to fill out. I go online and fill out info. Comes time to send copy of receipt. I go to scan it in. My wireless printer decided to pull its "offline" nonsense again. It has had a long bout of making me turn it on and off, reset it, resend info over and over. I fixed it. A six foot drop onto the concrete made me feel 100% better. A printer that you can buy brand new for about fifty bucks, and, it being the holiday season where you can get a new one almost free is not the time for cheap electronics to annoy their owners. I dug out one of my old scanners and scanned the document and sent it off. Sometime over the holiday, I will get a cheap replacement printer. It did feel quite stress relieving watching the plastic bits fly.:)

Gaining on list of things to do

Truck is in getting new tires. They have a nice courtesy service. They drop you off at home and pick you back up when your vehicle is done. Awesome. I go nowhere else for tires. They match competitors prices, so there is no need to go elsewhere.  Includes lifetime rotations as well. I also managed to get with the insurance on my roof. They are covering most of the cost of a new roof. I am covering deductible as well as some upgrades I chose to do. I am having them put a ridge vent in and getting rid of the old vent caps. Going to have them do the shed to match the house. Redo the gutters and down spouts and some trim work. Going to have them do some painting as well.  Still, saving a ton with insurance. Should have a roof within a couple weeks. Fifty year roof, so, I will be worm food long before a new one is needed again. Still have two days to relax and eat leftovers. Only three weeks left to work this year.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Made it past the first draft

Four unlucky souls got picked so far for work Friday. They asked me if I wanted to work. They had walked off before I could stop laughing. If I can make one more day, I am free and clear. Big plans for Thursday, sit back with my dog and munch on turkey and taters, take nap, wake up, munch some more. No plans on leaving the house at all. Just one more day, unless I weaken and use a personal day to turn it into a five day weekend:)

Monday, November 23, 2015

Hopefully, only two days left for the week

Won't count on it until I get out of there Wednesday. They have been known to ruin long weekends. Rain Saturday made the insurance checking out the roof out of the question. They are suppose to try again this Friday, when there is a 90% chance of rain. Maybe by spring they will have an answer. Ordered a smoked turkey through a friend at work. his dad does a heck of a job on pork butts and ribs.
The electrical gremlins are going nuts. My coffee maker died, so, off to the store where they had a great price on them. I hear a noise in the dash, my fan no longer shuts off on my truck. It kicks out hot and cold air, I can adjust the temp and somewhat reduce the fan, but, I can't shut it off. Have to look into it over the weekend. At least it isn't stuck in the off position. Would not be good without defroster this time of year. Not sure if it is the control, or, with the sound before it went, if the diverter door broke. Some kind of crunching noise in the center of dash seemingly behind radio right before failure. Always some kind of fiasco or other. Still have to find the time to get in for tires.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Work, work and work some more

Ready for a bit of down time. Wish my FMLA abuser would come back to work for more than a day or two so I could get a nice forty hour week for a change. Don't like a steady diet of no OT, but a week or two of it would be fine about now. Getting a bit on the burned out side. Still need to get work hours in at the club. As much as I would hate to, I may just buy the hours out this year. When I work six days a week, I just don't feel like hanging targets on my one day off. It has been an insane year for hours at work. We keep losing people and they don't replace them. It's nuts. I am hoping on a four day weekend for Thanksgiving. They usually like to work the Saturday after a holiday just to screw up a long weekend.

Insurance is suppose to check the roof out this weekend. Hope I make out decent on it. Neighbor across the street got a new roof after paying her deductible. I could live with that. Not counting on it, but hoping really hard. Be nice to be on the receiving end for a change. Either way, probably doing a new roof soon.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Lots done Saturday

Went out and got my eyes checked and new glasses ordered. Finally got my haircut, barber isn't open late enough during work week to hit. Missed out on tires. Was going to do that today. Woke up during the night sicker than a dog. Spent most of the day in bed. Feel better now. Don't know if it was something I ate, or a bug, but I definitely feel a lot better. Just sucks missing out of a whole day of nice weather off. Dog didn't mind laying in bed most of the day. As long as I got up and let him out a couple times and fed him. Keep hoping they will throw the tires I want on sale. I did get a someone to come out and look at the roof. Don't know if that qualifies as fun or not. He did tell me there is hail damage and I can probably get some money from insurance for part of the roof, so that would be a plus. Suppose to have the agent out this week to look at it. Neighbor across the street told me he made out good, so I figured I would get a quote. I put another roof on, it will outlast me. Back to work tomorrow. Bahh.

Friday, November 6, 2015

Two whole days off

I finally get two whole days off. Not sure what I will do, but I will find something. Thought they would change their mind at the last minute. Our resident FMLA abuser came back for four days after his two week plus hiatus, and is out again. Still like to know how one makes house payments and such doing that. Guess he got an open ticket from the doctor. He is allowed two random days a month indefinitely. Twenty four extra vacation days a year. Awesome. Suppose to be stress related. I should be able to qualify for that. Just have to figure the bill pay out :)

I did manage to get all the machines back on line. Two are bandaged together waiting on replacement parts, but they are running. Starting to do the PM's on the new machine. I am replacing the lexan in the doors as it seems to be the most important item in managements eyes. As long as the machines look nice, all is well. Running is secondary, safety a distant third. Glass is more for looks. I will  never make management. Like my frontal lobe where it is. Did get all the bugs worked out on machine and it does seem to be fully functional again.

I believe I will try and get to the eye doctor tomorrow after the barber. Have to try and get as much done on my full weekend as possible. Not sure when the next one will come up. May try and get the tires for the truck as well. Keep hoping on a sale, but want to get it done before winter. Believe it will be a productive, but restful day tomorrow. Want to chill out a bit, but need to get some things done.

Friday, October 30, 2015

It was an uphill battle

But I won. Cannibalized the servo cable from the machine with the bad motor to try on new machine. Alarm went away and I was able to move the b-axis, somewhat. It had limited movement. I worked it back and forth and freed it up, so it now homes out. I hope to start doing fluid changes Monday. I believe the b-axis needs a good flush and fill. I think some sediment in the oil may have settled on the gear during shipping. Machines don't like truck rides, especially old machines. Good to know it all works before going through the hassle of all the fresh filters and fluids. Looking forward to playing with it.

One more 4AM work day tomorrow. Supposedly my 3rd shift guy will be back after his latest two week hiatus on FMLA leave. Have to check out that gravy train. Anytime I feel like not going to work, call in a FMLA. Machine gun shoot, FMLA. Gunshow, FMLA. Run out of vacation and just not up to work, FMLA. I just have to figure out how the abusers of the system still manage to pay the bills. A part of it I just don't understand. House payments, utilities and such. Every place has at least one, we have two abusers. OT is nice, I just wish it was the second shift gone and not the third. I don't mind staying over, I hate going in early, and 4AM is just too early to get up. Second shift guy has a couple vacation days beginning of next week so I get to go in at 7 and stay late, so that is sweet. OT and sleep in.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

What a week

Used CNC grinder arrived last week. Monkeys they hired to move it in shouldn't have been allowed to move a gumball machine much less a heavy piece of equipment. Still trying to put the pieces together. The guards were piled on top of the encoder cables, chewing them to the point of uselessness. I went out to help them figure the orientation of the machine when it came in the building. They are lifting the machine by jamming forks under the machine instead of through the lift points. Driver starts lifting, the entire interior of the machine starts lifting off of the ways. I holler for lead monkey to stop lifting. Apparently, someone hollering stop and waving their hands does not mean much. Go over and holler at him to stop and come look. He reluctantly follows. He looks dumbfoundedly at machine and finally realizes they left the shipping bolts out of the x axis. They set it down, finally, and I find bolts for securing bed. They still don't lift it according to the machine diagram lift points, but do successfully pound machine into place.

I told them before bringing it in, dry fit the coolant unit outside where you have room so you know where to place it seeing how it has to go in first. No, too complicated. They place it where they think it goes, place machine, realize it is in wrong, pull machine, flip it around, place machine, find out it is wrong again, pull machine, flip again, place machine, manhandle unit into location. I swear it looked like a three stooges movie. Machine is very large and heavy. It wasn't an easy in out. It was quite entertaining to watch. I learned years ago, if people don't want to listen to reason, sit back and watch the entertainment.

Next up, our maintenance man. The only guy I know that every single time he hooks up a machine, the phase is backward and motors run in reverse. Every single time, including this one. It did have a new twist though. He hollers over, it's all hooked up, see if it is running the right way. I flip the main power. Big bang and flash. He didn't hook up the wires to the coolant tank. The people who shipped it unhooked the wires, twisted the stripped ends together and threw them in a  plastic bag. 480 dead shorted a couple feet in front of me when I throw the mains on the machine. Maintenance guy gets the coolant tank hooked up and tells me it is ready. I tell him to flip the mains. Screen lights up. Pumps won't start, emergency chain is not closed. I am very familiar with this machine as I have run one for several years, and, in order to run one, much like a English car, you better know how to work on it. It was fun. Some yahoo decided to tie in on one of the relays to trigger an auxiliary piece of equipment. Other than the fact that they used undersize wire, didn't tag anything, rerouted a few of the factory wires to added relays and had almost no documentation, there was also a bad part thrown into the mix. Once I rooted out their added relays and got the wiring back to spec, it still wouldn't work. I send a message to the people we bought it from and call the service tech I deal with at Hardinge. I tell him about the way the circuit was butchered and how I put it back to normal and it still wouldn't work. He aims me at the digital outputs for the relays. The output for the relay I couldn't get to come in was bad. I grab one of the ones out of the other machine and try it. She fires up. Pumps are running backward as expected. Have maintenance guy flip wires. I am able to home out two out of three axis. Third one, servo error. When machine came in to building, they threw guarding and all sorts of junk in on the b-axis motor and banded them on top of wiring. I look at cables. Looks like a beaver gnawed on the servo cable. Tomorrow, rob cable from other machine to try out and see if that is the only problem with the drive. Unfortunately, I am able to rob parts from other grinder as it decided to eat the motor that drive the wheel head. No cable in stock in America. Cable has to ship from Switzerland. They may make a hell of a watch, but their machines suck to put it mildly. I have three machines I run and work on, constantly. They all come from Switzerland. So, with any luck, the cable works, the machine runs, and I will be up to two out of three machines working. Motor is out being rebuilt for the other one and should be back early next week. Hopefully I can get the cable and a replacement siemens output card by then. Been a heck of a week. Only two more days to go. Hopefully my third shift guy gets back next week as he is suppose to. He loves FMLA. I hate it. Never know when he is going to be at work and when he is going to take a couple two or three weeks off. Only been back from vacation a few weeks and I swear it feels like I haven't been off for months.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Hard to believe

Sure is hard to believe it was only a week ago I was on vacation. Seems like months. What a week. My new machine is suppose to be in Wednesday. Christmas comes early. Should give me time to get some long overdue maintenance done on the other machines once I get it up and running. We are buried with work, so the maintenance keeps getting pushed down the road.

 Going to try and make it to the club tomorrow to get some hours in. I feel pretty run down. Just relaxing a bit sounds like a winner, but want to get my hours in before it gets brutal out there. I finished painting the fence last week before going back to work. Need to finish a bit of yard work tomorrow as well. Running out of nice weather, although it is much more pleasant not sweating while getting chores done. Debating on getting a couple loads of gravel. I can do it now or in the spring. Spring sounds better, but  I would like to get it done and out of the way.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Thanks Obama, can I have another

Had our benefits meeting for next years insurance. Only went up eight bucks a month. We no longer have to pay a copay when we go in to the doctor. Under the new policy, doctor bills you at whatever discount you get for the insurance we have, then, you pay the whole bill, not just a copay. Once you reach the new, much higher priced out of pocket limit, then the insurance STARTS paying. Yep, thanks Obama. On my way out of the meeting, Herb is walking out with his head hung low. So I ask "What's the matter Herb". Herb says "this really sucks. Can't wait until Sanders get in as president, maybe he can straighten this out."  I told Herb I just didn't understand what he was upset about. He voted for Obama in 08 and 2012. He voted for the benefits we are getting now, and apparently, he is ready to bring the next socialist in to help remedy the situation. Rarely a day goes by old Herb doesn't rant about just how great Obama is. Really don't understand the liberals voting in their leaders and then getting all hurt when it effects them negatively. He still has no real idea of what it has to do with Obamacare. Walked away bewildered and hurt, not sure why his hero is getting blamed for the mess. Most of the auto workers are in talks for contracts. I am interested to see how they make out now that the Cadillac tax is starting to kick in full force. I highly doubt the companies are going to eat the whole bill. Unions wanted Obama and Obamacare, now I am hoping they get to share in the aftermath. Hopefully, enough people get effected by the parts that are now kicking in so maybe they actually think before going to the polls. Unfortunately, most of the people at work that can't stand Obama and hate the way it effects them, don't vote. Alternately, the few Herbs we have never forget to vote. How I dread next year.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

That flew by

Only one day left before having to head back in to work. Darn it. New guy called up this morning. He jammed the machine against a hard limit switch. The other machine, he couldn't remember the sequence for starting it up. Headed in to get them going so they would not lose a couple shifts production. What should have been a five minute fix turned into a couple hours. Limit switch has never been hit before. Twenty years of accumulated grime, it went down and didn't come back up. I had to disassemble and clean switch to get machine back on line. Still, not the worst vacation damage. Usually go in to find one machine needing repair after being gone a week. My new machine still hasn't come in yet. Maybe next week.

While driving home yesterday, I noticed a shimmy in the truck at highway speed. Tires look like they are about toast. Getting kinda squirrely in the rain as well. Been researching brands to what people are having the best results with and getting prices. Truck tires definitely get your attention on price. Been meaning to do the brakes as well. Nasty dust on front wheels and don't like the way it brakes. When I bought the truck a year and a half back, they said they put new brakes on it. I noticed at the time how the rotors looked a grooved. Apparently new brakes on a truck they're selling means they threw a set of pads on it. Pads looked good when I pulled them, but I went ahead and put the ceramic pads that I bought on it. Put some heavier duty rotors on while I was at it. An extra thirty bucks per, but I want to see if they hold up better than the cheapies do. She brakes smoothly now, no pulsing and a clean stop. Back looked good so I let them go for now. Tomorrow, I will paint the fence.....

Friday, October 9, 2015

machine gun shoot day

Eight years of going to the shoot, sometimes to both the spring and fall shoots. I finally got to park topside for the first time ever. It is awesome. Shop, buy, drop off at truck and go back for more. Last shoot, I was the first car they diverted to the back lot, which is a heck of a walk or bus ride to the shoot area. Weather was a bit damp, but not too bad. It rained hard for several minutes. A few times, it sprinkled extremely lightly. All in all, quite doable. I picked up some AR stuff. Found a couple guns I was interested in. I even brought money. What did I forget. My FFL license. I keep copies in my glove box so I always have them handy. What I did forget was that my license expired October first. I renewed, but, I didn't have updated copies in the truck, just expired ones. Grrrrr. Pop back by the bank tomorrow and drop some money back into the account.

Start the day off with gunpowder in the air, finish it up with the smells of a steam show. Hit it on the way home. Saw what was open of the flea market. Not completely setup yet. Some of the engines were running. Saw mill won't start until tomorrow. I did pick up some BBQ for dinner though. Probably hit it again tomorrow when everything is up and running. It was on the way home and only three bucks to get in, so it was worth a stop.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Lots of cleaning out of the way

New pressure washer works great. Knocked the green growth off of the siding, prepped the fence for painting and cleaned the walkway. Garage floor will probably be in the spring. I was a bit worried when I read the reviews. Had quite a few bad ones as well as a lot of good ones. I usually have good luck out of craftsman and brigs and Stratton. I figure the bad reviews are the people who fired up the motor without turning the water on and purging the air out of the line. It doesn't take much to burn one of those pumps out. If you follow directions, they usually perform well. Probably hit the machine gun shoot tomorrow, the steam show Saturday, and paint the fence on Sunday. Week off is going by a lot quicker than the work weeks do.

Better,not perfect, but better

Time Warner got my complaint and is refunding my money. They said they never turned it into the credit agencies. They just have a standard way of shutting down accounts. They send it through their collection service, which has a third party name and the letter states that you have been placed in collection. So, I made out better than I thought I would. I get my money back and my credit is clear. Maybe when the Attorney Generals office gets done with the complaint I filed through them, they may see the error of their practices, but it is doubtful. They still think it is alright to scare people into paying an extra fee by threatening them with collection. How a big company like that can behave in such a way is beyond me. I will never do business with them again.

I am enjoying the new service I have through WOW. I just use internet, no cable. I picked up Netflix for entertainment and sling tv for the few channels I do watch. It gives me History, AMC and I picked up the EPIX channels as well. My cable is faster and only twenty five bucks a month for two years. Huge savings and a better selection than before as I only watched a few stations on cable anyhow.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Runabout day

Spent the day running about shopping for a pressure washer. List of things that need cleaning has been mounting. Want to paint the fence and it is a mess. Thought I could just hose it and paint. Not. Throw in the moldy siding on one side of the house and some spots on garage floor, drive and walkway, time for a new tool. I had it down between two washers after hitting the top three box stores and sears. I wound up back at Lowes, where I started my search. The only boxed one they had that wasn't on top shelf looked like it fell from the top shelf. After looking for help, I snagged an employee from a couple rows over. He was stocking Christmas ornaments (yuck, too early to even think about yet). I told him what I needed. He tells me they are down already. I explain I would like one that didn't fall from top shelf. He looks rather put out and tells me he can get one down, but, it will take about a half hour. He stands and stares at me trying to see if this will be alright. I tell him he can go back to hanging ornaments, I will just go to sears. He waddles off.

I get back in my car and notice the driver in the next truck over is a bit overly hairy.

He didn't move at all, not even his head when I walked by. Looked like he was posing for the commercial with the driving dogs:)

I hit sears up and picked up a craftsman with a briggs and Stratton motor. Has about the same psi as the one I was going to get, I just like troy-bilt better. It is about $60 cheaper as well. I hit up the auction to see what they were selling tomorrow. They had nothing I was interested in so I will be blasting my fence tomorrow morning. I want to take a couple rifles to the auction house to go in their gun auction in December. Want to test the waters a bit. I get some good deals once in a while, but, usually the December one, being close to Christmas, people tend to go nuts on bidding. Last year, I was looking at a couple guns I was going to buy new and figured I could pick them up cheaper there. They went for a higher price than new. Figured I would gamble with a couple of guns I don't care for. Lever actions do quite well there for bidding. I have a Rossi I can't stand. It will be one of them going on the block. Most of the day will be cleaning the fence and siding. Probably try painting on Saturday. Figure after power washing, I will have to let it dry out good before painting it. Friday will be the machine gun shoot, weather permitting. Have a steam show to fit in there as well. Spot shoot at the club Sunday, maybe. See how everything goes. Lots happening this weekend.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

It is fall, right?

I would swear it is Spring, and a rough one at that, going by lawn equipment. I go to fire up the edger. It usually fires up on the first pull. I end up pulling the carb and cleaning it after not being able to get it to start, even bringing starting fluid into the mix. Get my edging done. Pull out the weed eater. Guess what, no start here either. Pull carb and clean it up. She fires on second pull and runs good. Knock out half the yard, and, the coupler at the end of the shaft that houses two worm gears, strips out. Hosed. I put it away and pull out the lawn mower. She always starts first pull even after storage through winter. She actually fired up as per usual and I finished up most of the yard. All but the weed whacking. That was yesterday. Today, I pulled out the lower end of my old (20 year old) Ryobi weed whacker and pop it on my troy-bilt  weed whacker. The old head for the Ryobi died a few years back, but I kept the attachments. Wish I had just bought another Ryobi. Did have to hit up Menards for a new real for it as the old one was trashed. I quit using the lower last year because I couldn't find a reel. They are easy to reload line onto and last almost forever, but they do wear out. Fired up the whacker and knocked out last of trimming. Shouldn't be too many more mowings left in the year. Lawn gremlins must have attacked with a vengeance. My spring usually goes smoother than this mowing cycle.

Haven't heard back from the better business bureau on Time Warner yet. They said it could take until mid month. Today I filed a complaint with the consumer department of the attorney generals office. Want to see them change their practices more than giving me back a few bucks. Fined heavily would be nice as well.  I turned in the collection agency they deal with as well. There has to be, or should be a minimum waiting period before turning someone in for nonpayment. I would think it would extend past a couple weeks time. Sure hope they enjoy their sixty bucks.

Tomorrow, start painting the fence. Last work day around the house. I will start fun the following day. Thursday is the auction. Machine gun shoot starts Friday. Steam show starts Friday as well. Not sure of the order I will hit them in yet, but there is lots to do. Including  a huge festival downtown with lots of food.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Gun shows not so big anymore

Hit one last weekend and another today. They both had a lot of empty tables and empty space. Still lots of people, just less on display. Looking forward to the machine gun shoot next weekend. Take my money with that I saved at the last several gun shows. Only a few weeks out from the Indy 1500 again as well. Lucked out and lined my vacation up with the fall festival downtown. It's like taste of Chicago, only in Evansville. They line up a few blocks of downtown with food booths from all sorts of restaurants and organizations. You can definitely find something you like. It runs all day, everyday all week long. They have a decent carnival ride area for the kiddies of all ages. Usually have some decent live entertainment as well. Suppose to be a good week weatherwise. Probably hit the club tomorrow and get some of my work hours in. Not too much time left in the year.

Friday, October 2, 2015

vacation time

Get to start vacation off with another gun show. Last week, the armory, this week, the 4H center. Next week, the machine gun shoot. Freakin awesome. Throw in a midweek auction and things are looking good.
Do have some business that needs handling. Last month, I did away with cable. Had Time Warner Cable. Seems they have a real screwed up way of dealing with people leaving them. I turned in all my equipment on the last day of my monthly billing cycle and got a receipt showing I was good with the world. Owe nothing. One week later, I get a bill for $60. The bill, dated 9-1, was billing me for services up to 9-12. I call and talk with the incompetent people at customer service. After going through a horribly long automated push this button for this service menu, I finally reach a talking head. After putting me on hold several times while he checked on things, talking head tells me that the bill is a mistake, ignore it. I should receive a updated bill showing zero in the mail. I put my new bill and my receipt from disconnect away in desk. I receive a note from a bill collector on the 25th. The idiots at Time Warner turned me into collection for nonpayment. Nonpayment of a bill they told me not to pay. The original bill was typed by them on the 1st, I receive it on the 5th, they turn me into collection on the 21st. After telling me not to pay. I paid them to end the bad things happening to my credit, now, it is time to repay them in other ways. I already hit them with the better business bureau, mainly seeking them fixing anything the nimrods did to my credit rating. Monday, I am calling the consumer department at the Indiana state attorney office to file a complaint. I find it hard to believe it is legal to smudge somebodies credit in a matter of a few weeks. More than the money, I am thoroughly aggravated at the nonchalant way they can destroy somebodies credit and just not care. The lady I talked to on the phone the second time I called Time Warner said she saw the note left by the first guy I talked to and it said he told me not to pay. She didn't see what my problem was with just paying the bill. The collection agency shouldn't be any problem if you pay. What idiots. Totally done doing business with them. I have internet through one of their competitors and am done with cable. Way too much money for way too little service. Have a Roku player and Netflix. More than enough to choose from. Have converted a few people away from Time Warner already, so hope they enjoy their sixty bucks blood money. Unreal.

Friday, September 25, 2015

Gun show weekend

I am off for the whole weekend, and, there is a gun show at the armory, an auction all weekend long at the auction house, and, it is suppose to remain gorgeous outside. It is going to be a great weekend. Got home from work and the neighbor across the street was kind enough to bring over some leftover grilled pork chops fresh off of the grill. Awesome. She is  a great cook. Wish they made air fresheners scented like smoked meats, or bacon for that matter.

At work, I am getting a new to me toy. A CNC universal grinder. I have been requesting one for the last two years, and, it will be here next week. YES. Get to take a look at it before I go on vacation the following week. It has the exact same controller I use on the OD grinder I have now, but it has ID and OD capabilities, and auto gaging for checking size while it is running. It is almost like Christmas in October. It at least takes our capabilities up to the end of the 20th century. Not quite into the 21st, but close.

Tree limbs are all cut up and disposed of finally. Tomorrow, at some point, I will rake up the last of the old mulch and leaves. Gaining on it. All the dead wood is gone. Next spring I will have to start planting some replacement plants as it is getting barren around the perimeter of the house. Just have to make up my mind what I want. Ahh, two whole days off. So looking forward to it.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Steam show day

It was the last day of the Elnora Indiana steam show today.  They have a huge flea market, an antique tractor section, an antique car section, a working machine shop, a working wood shop, a pioneer village and lots and lots more. Very entertaining. I first heard about it last year. It is now an annual trip for me.

Here is a small section of their antiques on display. They go on around the room all the way to the ceiling. Another room has an old train layout, quite massive.

                      This is an antique horizontal saw, with a grinder in the immediate background.

                                        Here is the drill press. They had it running for display.

Here we have the drive for the whole metal and wood shop. I don't think OSHA would approve of the belt set up:)

                                  Here is the a front view for the grinder and horizontal mill

                                        This is the largest of the lathes they had on display.

                                                   Here is the small lathe running.

                                                   Here is the vertical wood band saw.

Here is the wood working side of the building. It operates off of the same motor that drives the steel shop. They are turning rolling pins at present. Last year, I got to see them make baseball bats.

They had a tractor parade. That was cool. They had about anything you could imagine from all eras. lots of great things to see and eat. Definitely be back next year. Next weekend is a huge gun auction. I probably will have to work, but I really hope not. Around 400 guns up on the block. A couple of broom handles are there. Machine gun shoot is still a few weeks down the line. I have a vacations set, so it is a for sure this year.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

well, it will still be a two day weekend...

Have to work Saturday, but I will still get Monday off, so that won't be bad. I was told I should be off  next weekend, which is the Elnora steam show, which is awesome. It is the one with the working metal shop. The working wood shop. A small town setup like pioneer days. Bluegrass music. Lots of good food. Plenty of steam engines. Huge flea market. All said, I would rather work this Saturday than next Saturday.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Well, that worked out great...

I thought I was going to have to move my antennae out of the attic, where I put it last weekend, and move it to the roof. Turns out, the tuner on the TV doesn't pick up over the air signal worth anything. I ordered a box late last week I can connect a hard drive to and I can then record my shows. I received the box today, hooked up the tuner and TV. Picture is perfect. I have to play with the record feature yet. I want to be able to record my shows as usual. Looks pretty straight forward. It does 1080p and surround sound, so it is better than VHS, and with a hard drive (which I already have) it will be cheaper than tapes. I am just happy I don't have to mess with the antennae anymore.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

I am shot

After hitting the frog follies Friday, crawling around the attic installing an antennae and running cable Saturday, and then, spending the third day off back at the Follies, I am thoroughly shot. Follies was a blast. Picked up a chop saw for the garage with an extra cut off wheel for twenty bucks. I found some Rat Fink paraphernalia that just had to come home with me. Saw a ton of cool cars and neat tools and parts. Missed out on the wooden toolbox. It was gone, but if it was something I couldn't live without, I would have bought it first time around. I wanted to see if the guy would drop the price some more. Oops.

Who can resist a rat fink riding a hog, and I didn't have a rat fink bobble head:)

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Day one of frog follies was awesome

I am still sore from all the walking I did yesterday. Today, I cut the cable. I had the other big cable company come out and install just their internet, no cable at all. Twenty five a month for the first year for 30 meg speed. Not bad. I picked up Netflix and Sling TV to cover entertainment at a small fraction of the price. Sling gives me AMC, History, TCM, Epix and a few other live tv channels I like. I spent the day installing an antennae so I can pick up the local channels. The area leaves much to be desired as far as signal strength and location. I originally came from Northwest Indiana, so, you aimed your antenna somewhat northwest and all was good. Down here, the stations are in all directions and weak. I tried an attic mount as I have a walk up attic. It is so so. During the week I will install it outdoors. It will be worth it in massive cost savings. Cable has been beyond ridiculous in cost, especially for the few channels I actually watch.

Tomorrow I plan on hitting the follies again. There was a Gerstner knock off box there that I would like. Being the last day, he will probably deal a bit more. I have a genuine Gerstner box, but this one is nice and a very decent size. It will give me additional storage for my mics and such. Many items I want to check on. Pork chop sandwiches are pretty tasty as well. Not really ready to go back to work, but hopefully next weekend will be a three day as well.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Frog Follies tomorrow.....

Finally time for the classic hotrod show. There are all kinds of custom cars rolling throughout the town. Got out of work a bit early today so I could knock out some chores. Tomorrow morning, in line at the gate anxiously waiting. One of my favorite events of the year. Huge swap meet. For sale coral has a ton of classic cars for sale. Can't wait. Weather is absolutely perfect.  Naturally, it falls on the big Indy gunshow weekend as it always does. Not sure if I can fit both in or not.

 Also have the competing cable company coming out on Saturday. Getting rid of cable altogether and going to internet only. 30 meg speed for only $25 a month for the first year, no contract. Figure Netflix and sling tv will replace cable at a fraction of the cost. Don't watch 90% of the junk on cable anyhow. Want to get my outside antennae up for the local shows this weekend. Have to run the old cable box back Saturday morning. Hate having to do that with the car show in town, but it is the end of the month and I don't want to have to pay another month.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Short week this coming week

Four work days and the Frog Follies starts up. Can't wait. Have a vacation day Friday so I can beat the crowds. This years temperatures are much more enjoyable than the usual scorching August weather. Looking forward to a whole weekend of fun. Naturally, it conflicts with the Indy 1500 gun show. I shall try and get there if I manage to get through the majority of the Follies. There is just so much to see between the cars, the parts vendors, and the huge flea market. Has to be one of my favorite events of the year. Two weeks after that, the Elnora steam show is going on. A few weeks later, the fall machine gun shoot. Lots to do almost every weekend for most of the next two months.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Back to work

It was a nice weekend off. Hit the gun show in the morning. They have a good breakfast with biscuits and gravy, so started off the day good. Not necessarily healthy, but good. Picked up some odd and end tooling and cleaning supplies, then moved on to the flea market. weather was perfect and everyone was out. Good thing about a truck, open fields become parking lots. Had a ton of cool items and antiques. Didn't buy anything, but it was sure fun looking at all the stuff. A couple of the tool vendors that usually show up weren't there. Probably at another function. Only a few more weeks until the Elnora steam show. It is the one with the working machine shop, wood shop and old time town. Really cool show. Huge flea market. Definitely an all day deal.

Finished with the fun stuff and headed home. The neighbor lady was having trouble with her gate in the back yard. The subdivision had a subpar fencing outfit put the fences up on all the houses. They quite quickly started falling apart. When I redid my gate, the hinge post was a whopping five inches in the ground with a handful of cement. Her gate was laying on the fence sorta held on by half a hinge and falling apart. I had some scrap boards from when I did mine, so I was able to get hers somewhat functional again. It isn't real pretty, but it is solid and it works. She is trying to sell the place, so functional is good enough. Did get a nice steak dinner out of it. Any day I don't have to suffer my own cooking is a good day.

Sunday was a little rest in the morning, then, on to my own yard work. Cut up some more of the tree in the front yard. Played around in the garage for a bit. Working on making some brackets for my lathe. I want to hook up some motors so I can run it as a CNC, but I am working at doing it in such a way as to retain the ability to still be able to do simple turning manually as well. Got a couple of ball screws with nuts which should get the slop out. Have almost all the hardware I need, just trying to design the brackets for the motors. Have some good ideas for how I want it, just trying to keep motivated and get it done. I picked up a bare computer case and am using it to hold the power supply and motor drive along with any relays I need. Going to be pretty basic. Run it on Mach 3 software like my little mill. I will still mount the cheap scales on it so I can use them when in manual. Starting to get there. Nice part is, once the bugs get worked out, I won't have to mess with gears for threading and I will be able to cut any pitch I want, including left hand if need be. Won't do heavy stuff, but it will be way more than adequate for the hobby work I fiddle with.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Two whole days offffff

I actually get a whole weekend off. Get to go to the local gun show followed by a trip to the flea market at the local 4H center. Hopefully the rain is done for a while. Try and get the last of the dead tree cut up and disposed of, then, play around in the garage for a while. Have a lot of projects started. Like to start wrapping some of them up. Nice to get a whole weekend off for a change.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

So far so good

Windows 10 seems to have fixed most of what I hated on windows 8. Had to work today, so I still haven't had a ton of time to really get to check it out. I do like having the regular screen start up back again instead of the tiles and having to redirect. Would still like it better yet if Outlook were still the default e-mail utility verses their Mail program. Have to dig around and see if I can find my Office disk and see if it works with Windows10 or not.
Work is still insanely busy, which is good. Got a whopping 2.5% raise rather than their regular 2% raise. Better than nothing, but just barely. They can't figure out why the kids are leaving to go down the road and work at a couple of new shops that moved into town. Every time one opens, we lose help. I have enough years in, I only stick around because of the vacation time I have earned through years of service. I won't live long enough to get to four and five weeks of vacation again. Not to mention, if I can manage not getting fired or killing a boss for the next three and a half years, I will get a one time bonus of four weeks additional vacation time I can take anytime between then and the time I retire.
Actually have a whole day off tomorrow. May get to sleep in until 8 if the dog permits it. Have a cool little local gun show to hit up in the morning. Told the neighbor lady I would put up her garage door opener as well. She is trying to sell her house and she is trying to fix broken things. It is weird. We all do it. Live with something that doesn't work and then fix it so we can sell the house rather than fixing it when it breaks so we can enjoy it. Have done it myself as well. She also has trees overgrowing in back of her backyard gate, making it unusable. Figure her kid with my saw should be able to make that problem go away. Get that out of the way, I have a tree out front of my own house that is going to start going away. Figure I will start cutting and tying up branches a bit each week until the tree is gone. Should be a fun weekend, not.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Hopefully, It will be better

Gritted my teeth, prayed, and hit the upgrade button. Running Windows 10 now. I sincerely hope it is better than 8. It does start up with the old windows look instead of the simulation of an apple product with the silly tiles. I am amazed however. It kept all my files, bookmarks, favorites, even my desktop looked the same, wallpaper and all. Everything except my Norton antivirus. The version I had was incompatible with windows 10. I went straight to my Norton account and downloaded the right version and all is well. I usually wait to let them get rid of the start up bugs, but, windows 8 was about as buggy as a system can get. Have to see how it is tomorrow. I checked a few things out, but it is getting late, so, be able to really look at it tomorrow. One item I did stumble on, and like, is that even though they replaced Internet explorer, it is still there. When you hit the blue e for explorer, it opens the new app, but, if you pull down the setting tabs, one drop down option is Internet Explorer. I will check their other browser out later. I went with the Internet Explorer option because, for reasons only known to Microsoft, the new browser does not have your homepages loaded, I have four tabs for a homepage so I can check out my usual stops easily, and your favorites folder is empty. The favorites can easily be imported. The homepage you have to manually set back up. However, if you pick the Internet Explorer setting, it will pull up the Internet Explorer as it was before you upgraded windows. This means all your favorites are still there and your homepages are unmolested. Upgrade in all went extremely well.

Friday, July 10, 2015


I am thoroughly lost. Roof's uncle buys gun. Uncle fraudulently fills in YES on ATF form saying he bought gun for himself, not someone else, such as a deranged nephew. Uncle gives whacked out nephew gun. Nutjob proceeds to kill people while they worship in church. Nutjob gets arrested. Now, FBI says they screwed up. The nephew should not have passed a background check. The nephew who never filled out a background check because uncle lied. The background system is flawed???????? Uncle filled out form thus passing the test and basically straw purchased gun for nephew. HOW is the background check to blame? Sounds like the media trying to get their new and improved universal background check back in the headlines. The story makes no sense at all.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Yeah, rain, rain and more freakin rain.....

Gloomy and rainy all day today. Headed over to the cinema to take in a show. Checked out the new Mad Max. Came out, it was a sheer downpour, still. Definitely not typical July weather. Usually my grass is burned and brown by now and the lawn mower put up as the yard is ash. Should be some sort of middle ground in here somewhere. Glad I cut the grass yesterday as lawn is a mud pit now. I am packed up for some range time, should the monsoon subside,hopefully before vacation ends. Auction was going to be held outdoors, so, we skipped that. Hoping on a little drier weather.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Vacation, at last

Vacation started out great. My kid came down to visit for a few days. Nice having some company for a few days. He headed back up north yesterday. We hit a few great eateries, took in a movie and went downtown for some fireworks. Took him down to Whitakers gun store in Kentucky. We hit up a local car store that carries some really sweet classic cars. They have an immaculate 71 el Camino. Black in and out. They got in a 71 Mustang. It came in the day before we went there, and had sold that morning. They added a 71 Corvette to the inventory. Has a 454, along with an extremely high price tag. We hit up the range for a bit. Took my AR out so he could try it out. Shot my Luger I picked up a couple years back. Took out quite a few different pistols to play with. Was going to take the M1 carbine out, but, couldn't find the ammo for it. I really need to get my ammo organized. Need to do some reloading as well.

 Today, I caught up on some house chores. Tomorrow, heading to an auction at a house with a lot of tools for sale. Auction house has a few different auctions going on most of this week at various locations. I am enjoying not having to go to work for a bit.

Saturday, June 27, 2015


I work not too far from the local airport. While working mid week, it sounds like a plane is about to plummet into the building. It is loud. Way beyond the sound of a thunderstorm. It passes. Shortly later, I hear it again. The small light bulb in my mind finally flickers to life. The Blue Angels are in town for the air show. I forgot all about it. Totally cool. Went out in the parking lot and they are flying VERY low in formation. We are at their turning point for looping back to the Ohio river. It is so cool to watch them fly and dive, even from a distance. Been quite a few years since they have been down here. Gave us something cool to watch during breaks.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Nice Surprise

Been working ten hour days, six day work weeks for the last few weeks. I was scheduled for tomorrow, and, after the managers had a meeting, the Saturday list was greatly reduced. I actually get a two day weekend. A rainy two day weekend, but, a two day weekend. And, supposedly, we are down to eight hour days next week. Head of the shop must have realized the price of the overtime. Need a bit of down time. Feeling a bit run down. Less than two weeks until vacation. Can't wait.

Last weekend, I hit the first local steam show of the year. Not the biggest, but well worth the four bucks to get in. This weekend, try to get caught up on some chores. If the rain doesn't stop, I am going to have to rent some goats to knock the grass down a bit. Can't believe the amount of rain we are getting.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Cool, he is back

R. Lee Ermey is back with Gunnytime on the outdoor channel. I just stumbled on it. I miss mail call. Looks like some more watermelons  are going to die. He always puts on a great show.

I have the WHOLE weekend off. Both days. Awesome. And, the next two weekends should be a minimum of a two day, if not three day weekends. One for a birthday, the other, a holiday. No gun shows that I am aware of this weekend, so I hope to play around in the garage and on the yard most of the weekend. Put most of my tools back in order last weekend, and got the lathe mounted securely to the bench. Have a few projects to peck at. Suppose to rain some over the weekend, but hopefully it will not be all day.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Very productive day

Only a one day weekend. Work is picking up again now that the weather is nice. Perfect weather. Finished picking up the last of the branches and raking up the last of the debris. Got the weedwhacker back up and going. Yard actually looks great.

After yard work was completed, I got to play in the garage for a bit. Made a special t-nut for one of the machine accessories for work. I never have time while at work for fixing some minor things. Got to play a little on my mill. I finished making the DRO (digital read out) box for the mill and lathe, and got it all installed and tuned in. It is a vast improvement. Easy to see the display as well.

                                                         Originally, with no digitals.

                              Here, I installed scales and the individual readout displays that came with it.

Here is the finished product. I used the same scales, but built a DRO box from plans on the web. It was an easy build, and very cheap. The microcontroller (it uses the texas instruments Launchpad, which is only ten bucks), a Bluetooth module ($5 on ebay), and a few micro usb plugs were all that was needed. The hardest part was downloading the software off of the Texas Instruments website to use to flash the chip. Not the most user friendly download I have done. Once built, the box can transmit the scale info to any android tablet or phone running the display app. Cool part is, it also has bolt circle, cutter offset, and bolt pattern display. If you have a 5 bolt circle you want to drill, and it has a 3 inch arc, you input that info and it displays a list of x and y coordinates for each hole location.  Very cool and cheap tool. I bought the tablet for really cheap on e-bay. It is a Samsung tablet 2, so it is quite dated, but does the job. I plan on putting scales on the lathe. I have them already, just need to install. Cool part is, I can unplug the box from mill and plug the lathe into it. I will slide tablet off mill and slide into the stand I build for the lathe as well, so it will cost nothing. The guy that made the app and designed the DRO did an awesome job. The app allows you to save settings for multiple machines, so I can tune the lathe to a different setting in app and choose which setting when I am choosing machine. Rather ingenious. I do love the net. You can find anything on it.  The web site is  .

After getting lathe lined out, I will be adding tachometers to both machines. The box I made is set up for it already. Just need to make a pc board and put together. Have most of the components I need from radio shack before they shut down. Pick at it a little at a time.

Got everything finished up and then went for a ride in the Vette for a bit. Perfect weather. Have to enjoy it before it becomes the inferno it does in the summer time. Back to work tomorrow. Bah humbug.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Great day off

Started out going to the flea market. It was pretty decent size as the weather was perfect. Nothing interested me enough to buy, but it was still a fun walk through. Saw a lot of antiques. Unfortunately with my age, a lot of the antiques were toys I played with as a kid. Kind of cool walk down memory lane.

After the flea market, I headed to Lowes. Didn't even get out of the truck. The lot was FULL.... Not worth it. I will hit it up during the week when it is empty. Left there to see what Best Buy had going. Found a dishwasher that meets the need at a decent price. Cut out of there and saw a car show going on in the lot. It was just starting. I went home and got the Vette out and returned. There was a 1969 red Corvette convertible in immaculate condition. A Cuda, Challenger, Charger, Nova and many many more classics. My phone battery (my camera) was too low to get any pics. There were no classic mustangs, unless you want to count the 74 mustang II, which I don't. Kind of surprised me a bit.

After the car show, I played around in the garage for a bit. I turned the backing plate down for the new chuck. Drilled and tapped the hole for the clamp to retain the plate. Trued up the front and mounted the chuck. Huge difference. Went from a four inch to a six inch chuck. It will actually be usable now.

                        I mounted plate backwards and turned diameter down to match that of the lathe and put in mill and drilled and tapped hole for clamp. Clamp keeps the plate from unscrewing when doing left hand threads.

Mounted plate and cut diameter to fit snugly in back counterbore of chuck so it runs perfectly true. Trued up face where chuck bolts up and the OD of plate and chamfered all sharp corners.
Here is the new chuck mounted and ready. The one on the bed is the original chuck. I will hang on to it. I can reinstall if I get rid of the lathe down the line. Doesn't eat anything.
Enough fun for one day. Picked up a pizza and chilled out for the night. Back to work tomorrow.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Good choice

Volunteered to work today. Rain, tornado warnings, high winds, good call. Heard about the military show down town on the radio at work. Hit that after work. Lucked out and went in to work early, so I got out in time to see the show. Picked up a few odds and ends. It's always an interesting show. Lots of unusual items. They had an ambulance used in Vietnam on display, and for sale. The military jeep they had was really cool. The collectors have a variety of items for sale, and a bunch of stuff on display.

Tomorrow is suppose to be back to sunny and nice. Hitting up the flea market/antique show in the morning. Then, I want to finish mounting a bigger chuck on my lathe and work on mounting DRO. Need to wash the siding as well. Cut down a few dead trees along house, exposing moldy siding. Yard is starting to look great.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Gorgeous day, and I am off.

Actually got a Saturday off, and it was a beautiful day. Started off with a nice long cruise in the Vette. Went over to a collector car dealer. He was showing a C2 vette in stock. Unfortunately, it was a 1973. Worst of all worlds. Still had the steel bumpers on the back, but had the plastic bumper up front, complete with three cracks all the way through. Worst one was right down the middle. It had the automatic, as the government standards did away with stick on the vette for a few years. It was a convertible, which was a big plus. Had it been a 72, she would have been awesome. He had a few classic cars on hand. A GTO clone, a 64 tempest convertible, a 73 cougar convertible, 70 buick skylark convertible, and two old time VW convertibles. My dad had a bug, and a van. Still can't figure out how any of us kids rode in the back seat of the bug. Been many, many years. He also had an old Bronco in great shape.

After cruising about, I tried out my new lawn edger. It is awesome. I was using an electric edger before. Cords were a real pain as I live on the corner and have a massive amount of sidewalk to edge. New edger, four cycle gas powered. It is awesome. I can do in fifteen minutes what was a couple hours before. The electric was slow going and being light weight, it was harder to get any depth on the cut. Added bonus, the new one has a curb adjustment. Didn't even notice it when I bought it. It is a four wheel unit, The two front wheels favor the center. The back right hand one pivots down at about four different height settings to match curb height. It also has an adjustment so you can go 45 degrees in either direction. I plan on doing that when the ground dries out a bit more. Going straight down was a little mucky, more rain on the way for tomorrow. Once the ground is fairly dry, I will angle cut it. to give it a trimmer look.

 After cleaning everything up, it was play time in the garage for a while. Got the lathe cleaned up. I also installed a couple of replacement parts. I got a new threading chart for it as the old one was completely illegible. Cleaned up the mill and got the vise back on it. Came up with a new floor plan to get a bit more room. I am going to try putting the mill up on the bench so I can put the powder coat oven where it resides now. I want to install the new display on the mill and start mounting the scales on the lathe tomorrow.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015


I ordered a cheapo phone charger off ebay for a tablet I picked up cheap. It has free shipping and says it should arrive no later than 4/12. Cool. I ordered it. Saturday came along and I checked. It was still in Florida. In three days time, it had traveled from one part of Florida to another part of Florida. Monday rolls around, I check, somehow, the post office figured that to get package from Florida to southern Indiana, it needed to go to Michigan. Some weird never before heard of town in Michigan. I checked again today, it is now in Detroit Michigan. I am not in a hurry as I have a charger that will somewhat work, but, I am just mystified at how they can sometimes get the shipping so utterly screwy on a package. Curious to see if it makes the west coast by tomorrow:)

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Lazy day.......

Didn't go to the shoot. Didn't do any more yard work. Did go cruising all the local twisty country back roads in the Vette most of the day. It was an awesome day. Top off, sun shining, seventy degrees. Perfect. I forget how well she hugs the road. Have to keep eyes peeled for deer at all times though. I played in the garage the rest of the day. Bought some micrometers really cheap last year. They were a bit crusty. I sprayed them with PB blaster last year and just let them soak. I was able to salvage all of them. A couple of them were completely locked up. They cleaned up very well. Wouldn't do for work, but, good enough for home. I need to take them to work so I can use the standards to adjust them. One inch micrometer up to six inch for sixty bucks. Three of them are Starretts, the other three were Slocumb. Never heard of the later, but the price was good. Had a bonus two inch craftsman mic in the mix.

Weather is suppose to go back to soggier than usual, so the Vette goes back on the rack for about a week. Got the plates in the mail and they are now installed on all the vehicles. Not ready to go back to work. Time off was fun but short.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

One more day of freedom

Almost time to go back to work. One week off and I still get two phone calls on work related matters. What part of on vacation do they not get? At least I know going in it is going to be a nastier than usual Monday. One machine has been down and I am fighting with the nimrods that supposedly serviced the control, which still doesn't work.  One of the other machines I run developed an ailment. Sounds like a bad rotary encoder. Just once I would love to go back to work and have all the equipment unmolested and working properly. I just hope nobody tried "fixing" anything as that usually creates more issues than it resolves.

Did get the last of the dead wood ripped out of the yard and cleaned up. I put some bird feeders up where the dead bush was by the living room window. Getting quite a variety out there, and a good view. Hoping on getting the hummingbirds back again this year. Lost a couple of the bushes they liked, but I placed some butterfly bushes close by along wit a feeder that should still help attract them.

Still waiting on a quote for the garage out back. May hit the club for the shoot tomorrow. Get some work hours in and see if I can get any leads on a concrete guy. Would like to get a foundation for the garage and a price on a small patio. Have pavers out there now, but would prefer a nice flat concrete pad. It was actually nice and sunny today and suppose to be more of the same tomorrow. Been an extremely wet nasty vacation weather wise. Suppose to be more of the same next week.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Rich's garage's?

Been doing some searching and measuring while on vacation. Garage in back yard looks very doable. Hit a couple places and viewed some models. Would be nice to be able to park the Vette out back and be able to work in the main garage anytime I want without moving vehicles around. Would be nice in the winter as well. Be able to put the truck in the garage. The one I am looking at would allow me to get rid of the shed out back and use the back portion of the garage for lawn equipment. Running power out to it will be a pain, but I will manage.

Been getting a lot of indoor chores done during vacation. Seems I picked monsoon season for vacation. It hasn't missed a day as far as rain goes. Throw in a few tornado warnings for fun, and all is complete. Still better than working though.

Going to skip the machine gun shoot. With all the rain, parking is going to be muddy to say the least. I have a truck with 4 wheel drive, so that would not be an issue. It turns into an issue when you get stuck behind some little subcompact buried to the axles in the mud and they have to somehow get a tractor in ahead of you to tow said vehicle out of the way. They already said one of the local bridges got washed out. Theirs is intact for now.

Finally cleaned up the closets and took a bunch of stuff to Goodwill and some old furniture to a consignment shop. Serviced all lawn equipment and got lawn mowed, fertilized, weed killer applied and some more dead bushes cut up and disposed of. One more dead bush to go, but that will happen tomorrow. Hard to believe vacation is almost over. Hopefully tomorrow will turn out nice and sunny as they are predicting. Like to hit the range at the club for a while.

Friday, April 3, 2015

The neighborhood ducks are back. They walk through the streets visiting different houses along the way. They took a dip in the little fish pond in my front yard and then decided to nap under the tree. Neighbors are pretty careful not to hit them. They walk down the road and you can drive right past them. There is a little man made pond of pretty good size a block over that they usually end their day in. It's pretty cool the way the two travel the little subdivision during the day though.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Happy 20 years anniversary to me...

Twenty years ago today, I started work for a machine shop building plastic injection molds. Twenty years later, I am still making and maintaining molds. Now they are injection, blow mold and thermoform molds.  I now work in our main shop in southern Indiana. A huge improvement over the Chicago plant. Lucked out and took the choice to relocate down here eight years ago as they shut the Chicago facility down completely last year. Hated to see it shut down as I knew a lot of people who worked there. The high taxes and other Chicago fees make it much more expensive to operate than other locations. They doubled the size of the main plant down here and absorbed most of the Chicago plant. I came down here when the absorbed the small machine shop where I worked. The shop down here is much bigger. I also enjoy CNC machining a lot more than all the manual work I did up north. Won't live long enough to get twenty in anywhere else. If I can make it four more years, I will get a fifth week of vacation and I will hit what they call the rule of eighty. When your age and your years of service equal eighty, you get four additional weeks of vacation you can use anytime you want. They roll over through the years until you use them up. May be tempted to try and take a whole month off. Pretend I am a democrat for a month. Only problem, I probably wouldn't want to go back.

It is vacation time. Can't decide between the machine gun shoot or, the NRA meeting in Nashville. I forgot about the NRA meeting. I was planning on getting a hotel room within walking distance and taking in some of the sites while there. Hank Jr. and Ted Nugent are putting on concerts this year.

Got the Vette cleaned up and the oil changed. Blew the cobwebs out of it. Was going to drive it today, but the rain started a day early. Need to detail the inside of the car. It is very dusty. Need to check brakes on the truck for more fun and excitement. Want to do some work on the Mustang as well.

Did get the digital readout box built for the mill. Still need to make a case for it, but the circuit is complete and I tested it out and it works flawlessly. Still have a few project boxes I picked up from radio shack before it closed. Picked up a whole slew of electronic components for pennies on the dollar as well.  Going to make another one for the lathe. Figure I can get the scales mounted on the lathe and the digital readouts installed. Looks great and it's really easy to build. Have to post some pictures as I set it up. Using my old cell phone for the display. If I can find a cheap tablet that has Bluetooth, it will become my new display. Running on Bluetooth, I can easily move the display between the mill and lathe as need requires.  Found a circuit diagram for building a tach that I can attach to the lathe that would display through the readout as well. Lathe has a pulley set up for changing speeds. Found a plan for converting to variable speed drive. When I convert the drive, the tach will be useful.

It's going to be great to be away from work for a while. Need some down time.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

That commercial, it is no longer funny....

The commercial with the giggling girls giving the muddy stray dog a bath, not funny anymore, not even a little. We finally got snow the other day. Eight inches, and all you heard was snowmagedon. Yeah, they don't get much snow down here very often at all. Usually blows by us, or we get a dusting. Well, the snow melted during the day, the neighbor kids are out enjoying the 50 degree weather, riding back and forth along Spike's fence line on their four wheelers. Dog likes playing border patrol There is a rut along the fence line where he ran back and forth. I had to wrap him in towels to get him to the bathroom for clean up. Hoses are still put away for winter and outside lines are shut off, or it would be the hose for him. Finally get him cleaned up, which he did not like at all, and he romps over to the door to go back outside (after drying off on my leather sofa, nothing dries a dog off faster than rolling on a leather couch). NO WAY. He is grounded. Got the leash tied to the back porch. He gets a tiny circle of patio block to romp on until the yard dries out a bit, probably about June. It is a flooded mess. The snow is melting at a radical rate.

 Suppose to hit 60's next week. Not bad. Two snow storms all year. A three inch on Presidents day, and an eight inch snow the other day. They shut the schools down for a week for the three inches we got on presidents day. They were talking sending people home on second shift. The college campuses closed. Eight inches up north when I was a kid was called, snow. Nothing to even be worthy of news. Be happy if it wasn't lake effect and measured in feet. The people over the Ohio river got it pretty good. A good portion of Kentucky got nailed. We lost a few workers for a few days. Farther than I would want to travel for work in good weather. Hopefully that is the last of the snow for the year.