Monday, June 30, 2014

Tuesday Turbo Boost

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Climb On!



Back To The Old Grind!

Not My Victrola: Lee Morse

We haven't listened to Lee Morse for quite a while, and she was masterful in making the switch to electric microphones during the mid-1920's,  "I Like Pie, I Like Cake" is a fun one.


Saturday, June 28, 2014

Our Era Of War Began 100 Years Ago...

Archduke Ferdinand and his wife Sophie were murdered on this date, 100 years ago.  The Great War began a month later, and this world hasn't had much rest from fighting since.  We'll be posting a few poems, and songs as a reminder of the tragedy of what is now known as World War I, at least until it all becomes too depressing.

Don Marquis, the Illinois author and newspaper writer posted a very good thought in his writings by archy:

"the league...incidentally i wonder why europe of today
                    is always referred to by highbrow writers
                    as post war europe
                    they seem to think that the war
                    which started in nineteen fourteen
                    is over with whereas there have been
                    merely a few brief truces
                    that war is merely worrying through
                    its first half century
                    and will only cease permanently
                    when a generation comes along
                    which has forgotten all the old feuds
                                                archy the cockroach"

This was written during the 1920's so we can forgive Mr. Marquis for missing by at least half....

E. L. Doctorow, in the novel Ragtime wrote just a few words at the beginning and end of his book that have stuck in my head.  Here they are, beginning at the end of Ragtime, and then going back to Chapter One:

 "Houdini realized he was now raised to his assigned height...He was upside down over Broadway, the year was 1914, and the Archduke Franz Ferdinand was reported to have been assassinated.  It was at this moment that an image composed itself in Houdini's mind.  The image was of a small boy looking at himself in the shiny brass headlamp of an automobile...(previously)...The little boy had followed the magician to the street and now stood at the front of the Pope-Toledo gazing at the distorted macrocephalic image of himself in the shiny brass fitting of the headlight.  Houdini thought the boy comely, fair like his mother, and tow-headed, but a little soft-looking.  He leaned over the side door.  Goodbye, Sonny, he said holding out his hand.  Warn the Duke, the little boy said."




Friday, June 27, 2014

Weekend Steam: Mostly New, 6 HP Russell Engine

I read about this little beauty in Engineers and Engines Magazine.  This was a discarded, worn out engine that had been scavenged for parts by steam hobbyists for years, when the old boy you see operating bought it and began restoring it.  Most of the parts you see are new.  The boiler, the rear wheels, the crosshead guide, and most other parts were lovingly re-created by the owner and his wife.  If you like this sort of thing you really should subscribe to one or more antique engine publications.  I started reading the Iron Men Album in 1965, and that created a lifetime hobby.  Anyhow, watch this little cutey go!


Ninety Trips Around The Sun...

...Today she's starting 91!  Happy Birthday, Pattie Ann!


"there is no hope for the world unless politicians of all sorts are completely abolished", Don Marquis

Aftermath

Have you forgotten yet?
For the world's events have rumbled on since those gagged days,
Like traffic checked while at the crossing of city-ways:
And the haunted gap in your mind has filled with thoughts that flow
Like clouds in the lit heaven of life; and you're a man reprieved to go,
Taking your peaceful share of Time, with joy to spare.
But the past is just the same-and War's a bloody game...
Have you forgotten yet?...
Look down, and swear by the slain of the War that you'll never forget.

Do you remember the dark months you held the sector at Mametz -
The nights you watched and wired and dug and piled sandbags on parapets?
Do you remember the rats; and the stench
of corpses rotting in front of the front-line trench -
And dawn coming, dirty-white, and chill with a hopeless rain?
Do you ever stop and ask, "Is it all going to happen again?"

Do you remember the hour of din before the attack -
And the anger, the blind compassion that seized and shook you then
As you peered at the doomed and haggard faces of your men?
Do you remember the stretcher-cases lurching back
With dying eyes and lolling heads - those ashen-grey
Masks of the lads who once were keen and kind and gay?

Have you fotgotten yet?...
Look up, and swear by the green of the spring that you'll never forget.

Siegfried Sassoon, 1919

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Crankin' It Up: The 100th Anniversary Of An Era Passing...

...E.L. Doctorow in the novel Ragtime opines that the era of Ragtime basically ended with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand on June 28, 1914.  It would be hard to argue against that.  Everything changed when the Great War began, and we have had turmoil ever since.  These two sides are good examples of entertainment before the war.


Dropping A School Marm

School marms have a well deserved reputation for being dangerous trees to cut.  They tend to break apart, or go in directions you don't want, so when you have the honors of tackling one, you walk around and assess it from a few different angles.  This one turned out to be easy.
 
The sapwood on this tree was rotted and falling off, but the heartwood was solid all the way through.  The base was tall and the two halves appeared to be well attached.  The aiming was done by finding the spot where both stems lay in the same plane.  Luckily, there was hardly any side lean at that spot. The tree was pretty well balanced fore and aft, and I didn't know if it would go by itself, so I set wedges before cutting it loose.  The hinge was made 2" thick all the way across, so there was plenty of strength to hold the tree in place until I tipped it.


Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Melding Old Iron; A Neat Idea

Say you have an old WD45 with no engine, and a gas engine with no cart to move it around.  That's what this looks like to me.  This is a pretty cool way to get more enjoyment from your old gas engine.





Tuesday, June 24, 2014

One Little Field, Two Big Machines, Done In An Hour



It's no fun getting behind big boys like these, but it's not as bad as meeting them.  They were just moving a short way and were just about ready to turn into the wheat field on the right when I shot this photo.  Here is a little of the action.


Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=421482271

Holy Cow, the collectors are coming out of the woodwork for this one.  Even if you can't afford to bid you should go look, and be amazed.  100% of the proceeds will go to benefit the Light Foundation.  Click Here to bid,(snort). This highly desirable rifle will sell mid-day, Wednesday, June 25, 2014.

$3125

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Summer; and Time For Family Reunions

One little corner of our extended family is faithful about reuniting every year, and that happened today.  It was glorious, with sadness, smiles, fried chicken and mashed potatoes.  Here are some of the photos from today.

The Giant City lodge serves meals family style, just what a group like ours needs.

The lodge was built in the 1930's and is kept up-to-date for vacationers, hunters, and others who enjoy a rustic environment.

 Dan did the group photo honors.


I had to move into the shade so my forehead wouldn't blow the camera...


 ...and then it was off to a private cemetery where only a couple families have loved ones.  Susan began documenting immediately.


But, we had serious business.


We had folks from Illinois, Missouri, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Florida, New Mexico, and Austria...


 ...becuase we were burying a loved one who was a husband, father, grandfather, and Marine.



It was a day that will be remembered.

Not My Victrola: Let's Make It A Double!

How scandalous is Pettin' In The Park?  The artist didn't sign it, and that says a lot!  This is a very nice Fox-Trot, and the tune will stick in your head.  Learn the words and you can shock Grandma!


Not My Victrola: Highways Are Happy Ways, Harry Reser


Harry Reser's Rounders - Highways Are Happy Ways by kspm0220s

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Crankin' It Up: A Pity To Waste It and March From The Fortune Teller

Today we wind up the seven inch discs we have been sharing.  A Pity To Waste It sounds a bit too fast at 78 RPM, and I may work with that one and see if the sound quality improves.  The March sounds about right, and is pretty good for being more than a century old.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Hudson, 1954 Hornet...

...The things I see when I am out in the timber.... It's why I always carry a camera.


One Show Ends, And Another Begins


 The basswood is just about done blooming, and the heavenly fragrance is gone.  The honeybees just about carried it off this year, but now they are moving on to other flowers.  Bumblebees and other insects are still feeding on the last nectar and pollen.


The day lilies are blooming now, and this show will last for a while.  This view is constantly changing, with each flower lasting only one day.  You have to carry a camera every time you go for a garden walk.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

What To Post?

So many photos, so many video segments, so many thoughts.  Sometimes I feel like a..






There aren't enough hours in the day.  Lots of projects are kicking around in my head, but work and lawnmowing interfere.  We have more chainsaw vids and photos, lots of engine photos, and important historical things on our minds.  TBS doesn't have the time or inclination to be wordy, but we do enjoy posting for our small band of readers.  I went to the Brunswick tonight, and before I had the camera on the tripod, before I turned on the lights, Brat was on the phonograph purring.  Fans make it all worthwhile.

Ruger's Auction To Benefite The Light Foundation

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=420457142




Ruger's offering this week is very popular, and I can't even get a bid in edgewise.  If you are really determined to have this rare .32 H & R Magnum Single-Six Bisley revolver, take a deep breath and check your bank balance before you bid.  Skeeter Skelton had kind words for the .32 H & R Mag when it was introduced, but popularity never took off the way it should have.  You can't buy a new one like this today, so if you want one, Click Over to Ruger's GunBroker page and knuckle down.  100% of the proceeds from this auction will go to benefit the Light Foundation.

$1401

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The Importance of Mothers and Fathers

John Prine knew this kid, and he talked about this song in an interview.  The song suggests that Wanda was a prostitute, and the father was unknown, but the truth is something that would have been taboo to put into song.  Jimmy really did kill himself after a juvenile court judge told him in court where he had come from.  Parenting well is serious business, and broken families cause more hurt, and more problems than we can know.  If you are a parent, or are going to be, plan on doing it well.  You can't know or appreciate all the responsibility that is riding on your shoulders when you start a family.


Not My...

Victrola  Stereo!

Weekend Steam: Southern Indiana Antique Machinery Show

Andy Gline has his Huber on the sawmill again this year at the Evansville show.  We were entertained by stack talk and the whistle as we strolled around looking at gas engines.  The show continues Sunday, and the weather is ideal, so head to Evansville first thing in the morning.


Evansville is celebrating a century since Hercules engines began production, and the number of Hercules-built engines on the grounds today was quite impressive. There were more 12 HP Hercs in town than at any time in the past. Hercules built five at a time, and they didn't build that size unless there was an order. I think I counted twelve of the big 12 Horse models today, and several of them were running.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Crankin' It Up



 We are reaching the end of the seven inch discs worth sharing.  Brat has been very patient with me as I played thse old timers, and he will be glad to get back to some good dancing records.  One more Friday with a couple of these old ones, and we will go back to some 1920's music.

A Barn...




..Stood Here.  Walked a quarter section of timber today, and found the old homesite; also the trash pile, and the old horse drawn wagon, and a Hudson.  You can tell this was a barn by the hay rail draped over the foundation stones.  There is a manure spreader standing next to it, so this was a busy farm at one time.  I shouldn't get blue when I find places like this, but I do.  More photos will come in another post.  I love Hudsons.  Brat, and a couple of very old 7" discs are uploading to YT now, and I will post him in the morning. It's been a long day, David aka TBS.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

SIAM SHOW! THIS WEEKEND! BE THERE!

The annual steam and gas engine show at Evansville begins Friday, and goes through Sunday. I hope to be there for a while on Saturday to shoot some new video for our blog followers.



Hercules (and Economy) engines were built in Evansville, so expect to see a good lineup of both.



Go Here for the location.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Always Passing It On


 While we cut trees the other day, a chainsaw newbie was with us, so everything we did became a lesson.  She didn't know what was coming...


Crank it up, and start cutting!  Aim completed, and a clean open face-cut was made.

  That first bore-cut is an unreal experience.  Use your knees to push that saw. One steering correction and she had it done successfully,


and punched it from the other side with no problem.  She already has her knee behind her hand for power.


On target; on the ground...


...and cleaning up without rocking the saw.

Here is one of our problem trees.  It had a split, lots of dead wood, and plenty of rot.  Don't let a successful drop make you think you're good.  Size them up and know where they want to fall, and where you need to be in order to be safe.  Trees like this one are anxious to get down, and they don't care if you are under them.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation

<br />
Ruger let one of these Race Rifles out of the safe about a year ago, and a very lucky person bought it away from sleeping firearm fans.  This one is generating considerable interest, but if you gotta have one of these, you better place your bid.  This fine rifle will sell mid-day, Wednesday, June 11, 2014.  100% of the proceeds will go to benefit the Light Foundation.

32 Bids, $1330!

Hazard Reduction



I just had a very enjoyable day dropping hazard trees with friends.  Most of them were completely dead, and rotten limbs and widow makers hung over our heads all day. Every drop went as planned, and nobody got hurt. Here's the first one:


Sunday, June 8, 2014

The Weekend's Over....

...and I'm back home.  My high school class had our 45th year reunion, and I had a great time while Susan held down the fort in Southern Illinois.




Monday morning it will be...





Back To The Old Grind!


Saturday, June 7, 2014

Not My Victrola: Too Much Fun

Once very popular in stage plays and Chautaqua tents, the villain, the maiden, and the masculine hero are memorialized in this classic.


Friday, June 6, 2014

175 years...175 Tractors

My hometown of Washington, Iowa is celebrating 175 years, and this week they have many activities going on.  One of the best in my book was a drive-in of 175 tractors that toured the town and then parked on the square.  175 is too many to put in one video.  I only shot half of it, and I clipped over half of that out when I assembled this video.  My picks are the M Farmall with the Jimmy Diesel, and the farm fresh tractors at the end that would benefit from being polished with a sand rock.


...And, While We Are On The Subject Of Heroism...

...take the time to watch this video.  There were giants in the world back then.


A Post From Ernie Pyle; 70 Years Ago

I took a walk along the historic coast of Normandy in the country of France. It was a lovely day for strolling along the seashore. Men were sleeping on the sand, some of them sleeping forever. Men were floating in the water, but they didn't know they were in the water, for they were dead.

The water was full of squishy little jellyfish about the size of a man's hand. Millions of them. In the center of each of them was green design exactly like a four-leafed clover. The good-luck emblem. Sure. Hell, yes.

I walked for a mile and a half along the water's edge of our many-miled beach. I walked slowly, for the detail on the beach was infinite.

The wreckage was vast and startling. The awful waste and destruction of war, even aside from the loss of human life, has always been one of its outstanding features to those who are in it. Anything and everything is expendable. And we did expend on our beachhead in Normandy during those first few hours.

For a mile out from the beach there were scores of tanks and trucks and boats that were not visible, for they were at the bottom of the water-swamped by overloading, or hit by shells, or sunk by mines. Most of their crews were lost.

There were trucks tipped half over and swamped, partly sunken barges, and the angled-up corners of jeeps, and small landing craft half submerged. And at low tide you could still see those vicious six-pronged iron snares that helped snag and wreck them.

On the beach itself, high and dry, were all kinds of wrecked vehicles. There were tanks that had only just made the beach before being knocked out. There were jeeps that had burned to a dull gray. There were big derricks on caterpillar treads that didn't quite make it. There were half-tracks carrying office equipment that had been made into a shambles by single shell hit, their interiors still holding the useless equipage of smashed typewriters, telephones, office files.

There were LCTs turned completely upside down, and lying on their backs, and how they got that way I don't know. There were boats stacked on top of each other, their sides caved in, their suspension doors knocked off.

In this shore-line museum of carnage there were abandoned rolls of barbed wire and smashed bulldozers and big stacks of thrown-away life belts and piles of shells still waiting to be moved. In the water floated empty life rafts and soldiers' packs and ration boxes, and myserious oranges. On the beach lay snarled rolls of telephone wire and big rolls of steel matting and stacks of broken, rusting rifles.

On the beach lay, expended, sufficient men and mechanism for a small war. They were gone forever now. And yet we could afford it.

We could afford it because we were on, we had our toe hold, and behind us there were such enormous replacements for this wreckage on the beach that you could hardly conceive of the sum total. Men and equipment were flowing from England in such a gigantic stream that it made the waste on the beachhead seem like nothing it all, really nothing at all.

But there was another and more human litter. It extended in a thin little line, just like a high-water mark, for miles along the beach. This was the strewn personal gear, gear that would never be needed again by those who fought and died to give us our entrance into Europe.

There in a jumbled row for mile on mile were soldiers' packs. There were socks and shoe polish, sewing kits, diaries, Bibles, hand grenades. There were the latest letters from home, with the address on each one neatly razored out-one of the security precautions enforced before the boys embarked.

There were toothbrushes and razors, and snapshots of families back home staring up at you from the sand. There were pocketbooks, metal mirrors, extra trousers, and bloody, abandoned shoes. There were broken-handled shovels, and portable radios smashed almost beyond recognition, and mine detectors twisted and ruined.

There were torn pistol belts and canvas water buckets, first-aid kits, and jumbled heaps of life belts. I picked up a pocket Bible with a soldier's name in it, and put it in my jacket. I carried it half a mile or so and then put it back down on the beach. I don't know why I picked it up, or why I put it down again.

Soldiers carry strange things ashore with them. In every invasion there is at least one soldier hitting the beach at H-hour with a banjo slung over his shoulder. The most ironic piece of equipment marking our beach-this beach first of despair, then of victory-was a tennis racket that some soldier had brought along. It lay lonesomely on the sand, clamped in its press, not a string broken.

Two of the most dominant items in the beach refuse were cigarettes and writing paper. Each soldier was issued a carton of cigarettes just before he started. That day those cartons by the thousand, water-soaked and spilled out, marked the line of our first savage blow.

Writing paper and air-mail envelopes came second. The boys had intended to do a lot of writing in France. The letters-now forever incapable of being written-that might have filled those blank abandoned pages!

Always there are dogs in every invasion. There was a dog still on the beach, still pitifully looking for his masters. He stayed at the water's edge, near a boat that lay twisted and half sunk at the waterline. He barked appealingly to every soldier who approached, trotted eagerly along with him for a few feet, and then, sensing himself unwanted in all the haste, he would run back to wait in vain for his own people at his own empty boat.

Over and around this long thin line of personal anguish, fresh men were rushing vast supplies to keep our armies pushing on into France. Other squads of men picked amidst the wreckage to salvage ammunition and equipment that was still usable.

Men worked and slept on the beach for days before the last D-day victim was taken away for burial.

I stepped over the form of one youngster whom I thought dead, But when I looked down I saw he was only sleeping. He was very young, and very tired. He lay on one elbow, his hand suspended in the air about six inches from the ground. And in the palm of his hand he held a large, smooth rock.

I stood and looked at him a long time. He seemed in his sleep to hold that rock lovingly, as though it were his last link with a vanishing world. I have no idea at all why he went to sleep with the rock in his hand, or what kept him from dropping it once he was asleep. It was just one of those little things without explanation that a person remembers for a long time.

The strong, swirling tides of the Normandy coast line shifted the contours of the sandy beach as they moved in and out. They carried soldiers' bodies out to sea, and later they returned them. They covered the corpses of heroes with sand, and then in their whims they uncovered them.
As I plowed out over the wet sand, I walked around what seemed to be a couple of pieces of driftwood sticking out of the sand. But they weren't driftwood. They were a soldier's two feet. He was completely covered except for his feet; the toes of his GI shoes pointed toward the land he had come so far to see, and which he saw so briefly.

From "Brave Men" by Ernie Pyle

Thursday, June 5, 2014

And Even More Heroes

Susan's father never told much, just a little, of his time in the Pacific. When I asked about this photo, he would say, "We had Indians in our outfit."...Nothing More. Well, O.T. laid phone wire. Those men talked through wires he put on the battlefield, and he came home alive. God Bless Them. The last one of the Code Talkers has passed on, so this photo came to mind today. The men he spoke of only briefly are on the lower right of the photo. O.T is fifth from the end of the back row. They fought together on Bougainville, Guam, and Iwo.

Weekend Steam: Eleven Channel Crossings During The Invasion!

This video is several years old, and I hope that the volunteers interviewed are still with us.


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Crankin' It Up, Even More Victrola

A dear friend has donated this Victrola, music cabinet, and a very nice collection of records to our music room, and we continue this week with a couple of Red Label Victors that are more than 100 years old.  Never fear, Brat will be back with his Brunswick.


My Eyeglasses? I Wear Faceplant 500's!*


I've been juggling various reading glasses for several years as I transitioned from mild middle-age-eyes to cataracts in both eyes.  My vision has gone from 20-15 at age 45, to 20-60, and I finally broke down and bought prescription tri-focals.  There's a whole lot that the doctor doesn't tell you when he sets you up with these.

I've been using low power readers for driving and walking; stronger ones for reading and working on the computer.  The upper part of the tri-focals take the place of my low power readers, and give clear vision in both eyes.  The lower part of the lenses do the closeup work.  It took just a few days to train my head how to bob and weave for the right effect, or so I thought.

While trekking through a woods, seeing clear as a bell on my compass target, I was suddenly on my face in the leaves.  I had tripped over fence wire that was about 3" above the leaf litter.  I hadn't seen it at all.  I hit hard enough that blood spurted out of several places in my recently healed hand.  A week later, I walked off a culvert and did another nose dive into a ditch.



The lower peripheral vision in these glasses is a blur, and you don't notice that when you are looking ahead.   The doctor didn't warn me about this, but he did tell me to put them on and not to be switching back to reading glasses.  That advice is out the window, and I've gone back to readers for hiking.  The other thing the doctor didn't talk about is the way these glasses can induce motion sickness.  As I work from one side of my computer, to the screen, and then to the other side for my printer-scanner, the various focal lengths in these lenses provide an out-of-focus, swimming effect that will make you nauseous. 

I have noticed, but never thought about older folks walking with their heads turned down.  When you see that in the future you will know that that person has busted their face into the sidewalk because he/she was looking ahead through tri-focals as they walked.  Why don't these glasses come with a warning label, and why aren't the doctors prescribing them warning their patients? 

* Faceplant, what they do to you.  *500, what they cost.




Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation

http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=417539271


Ruger's auction this week is a 1988 Blackhawk Convertible in .357 Magnum/9mm.  It was sent out for photography, returned, and stored away in Ruger's vault.  It sells mid-day, Wednesday, June 4, 2014, and 100% of the proceeds will go to the Light Foundation.  Click Over to read the entire description, and to place your best bid.

$1325.07!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Are You Ready...

...to make little ones out of big ones?



Back To The Old Grind!


PS:  Someone find this guy and give him a tripod!