Sunday, December 31, 2017

Koda's Gone Where The Winds Hit Heavy on the Borderline...

....Where the Snowflakes Fall, Where the Rivers Freeze When the Summer Ends.  Icy roads on the way to meet Koda's new family reminded me of a song (!) and it's been running through my head all day.  We met up at mid-day, took care of paperwork, and helped Koda work through his case of jitters from seeing new places, people, and real COLD SNOW. One Degree Fahrenheit Snow!  It will be a switch for a little dog accustomed to Southern Illinois, but he will have a cozy bed and loving people to take care of him.  Here we see Koda conducting the adoption interview.  Best Wishes for a Happy New Year for Koda and his Forever Family!


Here's Bob Dylan's song, performed by Lester and Earl.

We Interrupt This Program...

We've been busy with family, dogs, and firewood. Koda is going to his new home today. We should return nearly to normal soon.

Friday, December 29, 2017

Weekend Steam: Old Steam Powered Machine Shop 34 & 35

Merle's snowed in out by Lake Erie, and he couldn't fire up a steam engine for me this week.  Let's all hang out in Dave Richard's Steam Powered Machine Shop and warm up a bit.




Thursday, December 28, 2017

Hotcakes; Can You Say Hotcakes? Ruger Has A New Pistol Caliber Carbine!

Ruger is always pushing great new products out the door to surprise and please their customers, and I think this new little rifle is going to sell as fast as they can build them.  Nobody is saying anything about additional calibers, but I bet those are already in the works.  They have the 9mm ready to go, so that is what they are pushing now; just be patient if you want other pistol calibers, because it only makes sense that those will be chambered, too.  The 9mm packs plenty of punch out of the carbine barrel, and it would be good for home defense, varmint control, and even deer hunting in some states.  CLICK HERE to read Jeff Quinn's written review on his GunBlast site.


Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Ralfy Review: Whiskey Of The Year, What Is Your Defintion of Cozy?

Ralfy lives on the Isle of Man, in the Irish Sea.  He lives in a stone house, and he always is wrapped up for his videos.  Tonight he has a rather small fire on his hearth, and he is "Cozy."  It's a fraction of the fires we have in our stoves, and you can see Ralfy's breath.  He is made of stern stuff, Ralfy is!  I always enjoy his videos, and I think I would like him a lot if I were to visit with him.  Several years ago he made a video with his Mother, and you could tell that he loved her, and she loved him.  He was very kind to her.  That video is gone, and I fear his mother probably is gone, too.  Let this video be part of your Happy New Year celebration.  Ralfy is a good guy, and I like him.


Stayin' Alive!


Back in November I drove to Chickasha, Oklahoma and back in one weekend to pick up Lisa Marie.  It turned out to be 1302 miles.  I went 100 on both Thursday and Sunday, when I stopped in St. Louis to break up the miles.  Staying awake when driving alone can be a challenge.  I am pretty good at pouring coffee from my Stanley Thermos as I drive, because I have been doing it for decades.  Sometimes coffee is not enough, though.  Susan had packed caffeine shots in my snack bag, but they are hard to use when you are driving.  You have to cut the end off a foil tube, dump the powder into a little bottle of water, recap the bottle and shake it up.  Coming through Oklahoma and Missouri on Saturday I had a heavy crosswind and rain that kept visibility restricted. There were wrecks because of the wind, so I had to pay attention to my driving, and I was fighting sleep.  I reached into my snack bag and fumbled around.  The bottle I pulled out said ENERGY!  I did not have my reading glasses on, so I couldn't see the small print.  I thought it was a bottle with one shot of foul tasting psuedo fruit juice with a big shot of caffeine.  I managed to get the seal off of it and started shooting juice into my mouth.  That stuff seemed mighty intense...got about half of it down and put on my glasses.  Holy Cow.  I had just consumed at least 6 shots of caffeine!  I have over-indulged in coffee a few times, and the results are not pleasant.  The main thing is you can feel your heart pound and your chest tightens up.  About then Susan called and asked how I was doing..."I'm trying not to have a heart attack!" is what I told her.  I was chugging water to dilute the stuff down, and I got out at a rest stop and walked around a bit.  I made it to St. Louis and slept just fine that night, but I don't plan on doing caffeine shots like that again!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Essential Fashion Advice For Senior Men!

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Wounded Warrior Outdoors


Well, People's Good!  Ruger is offering a Deluxe Sporter this week that was made in 1972.  The distributor returned it for unknown reasons, and it appears to be as new in the photos from Ruger's website.  Maybe there is a little mark on the left rear of the stock.  If so, that can be fixed.   The reason I say that People are Good is that the next bid as I post this is $760, and suggested retail for a new Deluxe Sporter is a bit over the $400 mark.  Folks are generous!  This fine .22 LR rifle will sell mid-day, Wednesday, December 27, 2017.  The money goes to a good cause, and the winner gets a nice rifle for the contribution.  CLICK HERE, or on the photo to read the full description and to place that winning bid.  $1050

Tuesday Torque: Reversible Marine Engines

Reversible engines are not well known in most of the engine world, but they are well known in the world of cargo ships.  One of my forest landowners had a model of one that he showed me. He worked for an engine company and he loved talking about engines as much as he loved working in his timber.  Click this Link to watch a reversible engine in action as the engine starts, reverses, and then restarts to move the boat forward.  Our Facebook friend Eric Janssen posted this, but evidently the video is not embeddable on other sites.  Remember that when you post if you want your work shared on other formats.  You choose your privacy level on both Facebook and YouTube.


Photo is a screenshot from Eric's video, and is also linked.

OOPS!  The link works only if you are a Friend of Eric.  Oh Well.  Ask Eric to "Friend" you and you can enjoy his posts.  Eric Janssen is an artist who lives on the good ship Valer with his Schipperke Saartje, who may have been Cleopatra in a former life, his wife Lisbeth, and their son.  His posts are always a joy to see.  Eric posts under his name, and also in I Love My Schipperkes on Facebook.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Let It Snow, Dean Martin

Dark Mornings, Dark Evenings

Aren't you glad that you don't have to ride the bus now that you are grown up?!  What a depressing way to begin and end your school day.  In another month there will be a little light in the sky again when they start out in the  morning.


Monday, December 18, 2017

Jesus, The Missing Years, John Prine

This should be in our Christmas rotation, near as I can tell.  Always makes me sad, though.


Carol Of The Bells, Trans Siberian Orchestra

Tuesday Torque: Holt 120

This video shows the final seven days of the restoration of this tractor, which was found in Fairbanks, Alaska.  You can read all of the writeup HERE, on YouTube.  Merle spotted this one for us, and it's a good one.  Can you imagine soldering all of those tubes for the radiator?


Friday, December 15, 2017

Winter Wonderland, Dean Martin

Weekend Steam: Back To The Beginning Of Steam On The Farm

I don't know if Westinghouse was the first engine built for farm use, but I think it is the first to come into general distribution and use.  This one is from 1881, and you will probably never see one at a show.  Boilers have to be built to certain specs and be inspected for public shows, and a boiler from the 1880's is not going to make the inspectors happy.  Click this video over to YouTube and you can see that the owners are confident of the boiler at low pressure for private showings, but they do not plan to make it meet current specs.  It would require a new boiler to do that, and this one is good enough for private runs.

Most of the early portable and traction engines did not survive because of advancements in technology.  The air stackers of later threshing machines required more horsepower, so early traction engines became obsolete overnight.  Boilers were another subject.  There were many bad boiler designs in the early years and boiler explosions were common at sawmills and threshing sites.  If you have been looking at steam engine magazines for the last fifty-something years, you know what I am talking about.

The Westinghouse engines are remarkable because they pushed the Industrial Revolution onto the farm.  There are a few survivors because they were a solid design.  Henry Ford liked them, and maybe they were part of his inspiration.


Many Thanks to Merle for spotting this video for our enjoyment!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Holly Jolly Christmas, Burl Ives

No, Not One And A Half!


This was a nice little patch of riparian timber not far from our home.  In 2010 it was 13 1/2 acres, then the owner cleared most of it after selling out the timber.


One and a half acres remained in 2011.


Now it is gone.  This is not a Forestry post, because this isn't Forestry.  I think Heinous Perpetrators fits it close enough.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Wounded Warrior Outdoors



Chances like this one do not come around often.  Ruger is offering a Left Hand Gunsite Scout Rifle in .308 Winchester.  This is not a production item!  It is ready to use out of the box with its peep sight at the rear of the receiver, or you can mount a scope on the Picatinny rail.  CLICK HERE to read all about this special rifle and to place your bid.  $880

Merry Christmas Darling, The Carpenters

Monday, December 11, 2017

Tuesday Torque: Behind The Scene At An Engine Hobbyist Hideout!

In these videos we see Bob and Rob Gill working with a 1927 Cummins.  In the first video it is running on one cylinder, and Bob finds that the shop air compressor does not have enough pressure for air starting.  It takes a lot of tinkering with old iron to make it perform at the shows.



Bob and Rob lapped all four valves in the air starting system and found that they need 150 psi to roll this engine over for starting.

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas, Johny Mathis

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Angel Eyes, Emmy Lou Harris

Pass It On!

Bob Smith, at Smith Mill, Rinard, Illinois explains the intricacies of a stone bur mill and the milling business.  Bob and Marlene Smith host an open house in October every year, plus special events throughout the year. Knowledge is fleeting and can disappear in a generation or two. Smith's museum is a valuable resource for folks interested in history and industry.


Back To The Old Grind!

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Lisa's Got A Ticket To Ride


Lisa has her harness for trips in the country.  She has been going over to the farm and visiting Jack and his cats.  Jack and Lisa walk well together, but out in his yard she is a bit intimidated when he runs by her.  As long as he is on the leash she is fine, though.

We watched Lisa's mom on Facebook today showing Schipps at a big dog show in Dallas.  That was a thrill!  Time for walking dogs before bed!

Sleighride, Leroy Anderson

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Wounded Warrior Outdoors


You can't go wrong with Ruger's offering this week! It is a New In Box, late 2000 production P 94 DA/SA, Ambi Safety, Ambi Mag Release in .40 Cal with two magazines.  This fine pistol will fit into your life for car, home, or carry.  It will sell mid-day, December 6, 2017.  Click Here to read all about it and to place your bid.  This is a gun that will not attract the collectors, so regular Ruger shooters have a chance on this one!  $525 Someone got a deal!

Silver Bells, Dean Martin

God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen, Mannheim Steamroller