Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Illinois Engine Guy's IHC Titan Rebuild

Gary Bahre called last week and invited me to stop by his shop to see his progress on the engines he bought last December. The Titan engine is ALMOST done. He has all of the parts put together, but it won't run because the rings leak too much. An engine with good piston rings will bounce back when you roll it over to the compression stroke, but the IHC can be heard making rude noises as the air escapes past the piston. Oh Well. Gary will be ordering new rings, and fitting them to the cylinder, but he won't have this project ready in time for Pinckneyville in August. It's not the end of the world, it's just a bump in the road for an engine hobbyist. Stay tuned to this blog for the engine Gary WILL be bringing to the American Thresherman Show next month.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Stay Tuned

Gary Bahre called and asked me to stop by his shop if I was in the neighborhood.  I was, I did; and I have pictures.   More later.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

The Weekend's Gone

Back To The Old Grind!

Crankin' It Up

State Street Blues by the Cotton Pickers, 1922 by TrueBlueSam

The Cotton Pickers recorded this wonderful fox-trot in July, 1922. Played on the old 1920's Brunswick phonograph, just for authenticity.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Weekend Steam: Light 'er Up!

Uploaded by leadingtruck on Sep 15, 2009

Going through the raising steam process on Ja1271 at Steam Inc, Paekakariki a day before an excursion.

When I watch something like this, I think, "Why did I go into forestry?" I was born 100 years too late; that's why.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Not My Victrola: An Old Time Double

Uploaded by edmundusrex on Apr 3, 2009

"Elsie West Baker (Sept.27,1886 Philadelphia, PA - April 28,1958 Manhattan, NY)

She began her recording career by making cylinders for several companies. Somethimes she recorded under the names of Edna Brown, Nora Watson and Mabel West. She recorded most often for the Victor label and became one of the companies most successful contraltos on the black as well the blue labels.

She was also a successful recitalist, traveling widely to give performances."

Uploaded by fuzzbear6240 on Sep 9, 2007

"Columbia A5838 (48828) "The Missouri Waltz" (Arr. by Logan) Played by Prince's Orchestra (Under the supervision of G. Hepburn Wilson). First issued circa late 1922. Played on my VV-VIa.

I dedicate this version of Truman's favorite song to him and his bride."

Thursday, July 26, 2012

One Of The Fascinating Machines You Can Watch At Boonville, Indiana

This big Fairbanks engine is just one of a minor multitude of gas and steam engines you can see this weekend, July 26-28, 2013, at The Antique Steam and Gas Engine Club's 50th annual show, just north of Boonville, Indiana. Click For More Information.   The Fall 2012 show is scheduled for October 11-13, 2012.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Take It Out!

Hollow silver maple, a few feet from a house; the homeowner wants it down.  One problem.

Honeybees.  Nobody wants to stick a saw into a tree full of bees, and you don't want to be around a bee tree if it hits the ground.  Removing the bees is not difficult if you have a few weeks.  A cone made of screen wire has to be fastened over the entrance to the wild hive.  The cone lets workers leave, but keeps them from returning home.  A hive with bees, a caged queen, a few frames of brood, and honey is set up next to the cone so the excluded bees will have a new place to call home.  It takes two or three weeks for all the workers, and newly hatched bees to make the move, and it is actually an easy operation for beekeeping hobbyists.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Travel To The Gun Blogger Rendezvous On The Amtrak Zephyr!

Silver Legacy and Reno Amtrak Station (Click photo to enlarge.)

I'm not going to attend the Rendezvous this year, but looking ahead to future years, I think I know how I am going to travel to Reno.  One way from Chicago to Reno on the California Zephyr costs only $140 dollars, which is a substantial savings over airline travel, and I don't think you have to be groped by the TSA to travel by train.  The trip takes a lot more time on the train, so you have to block out more days on the calendar, and you have to carefully choose which station you will use to board.  Checked baggage on the Zephyr is available at Chicago, Omaha, Lincoln, Hastings, Denver, Glenwood Springs, Grand Jucnction, Salt Lake City, and Reno.  You must check your bags if you are traveling with firearms and ammo to the Rendezvous, so you must plan your trip around one of these stations.  You can also check baggage at four stations in California if you are coming from the west;  Emeryville, Martinez, Davis, and Sacramento.

I am going to stick my neck out and recommend that you do not try to check firearms and ammo at Union Station in Chicago.  Union Station is in the 'Belly of the Beast" of unfriendly gun laws, and I don't know what type of scrutiny travellers might have to endure from Chicago police.  Chicago laws can be looked up on the internet, and what I have read makes me very wary of having unknown people inspecting my cargo. 

If you live in Iowa, Nebraska, Northern Missouri, Colorado, or Utah, Amtrak may be the way to go for you to get to Reno.  Go to the Amtrak website to make reservations and read all the rules.  You must call ahead before you travel with firearms, but the process appears to be relatively easy.

The Rendezvous is only six weeks away, so get busy.  You need to register with Mr. Completely, make your hotel reservations,  and travel plans, and start packing.

UPDATE: Please note that you MUST call Amtrak more than 24 hours before you travel to make a reservation for each firearm, and the ammunition you are taking,, From the Amtrak site: "Notification that the passenger will be checking firearms/ammunition must be made no later than 24 hours before train departure by calling Amtrak at 800-USA-RAIL. Online reservations for firearms/ammunition are not accepted."  Your firearm reservations are handled separately from your personal reservations, and cannot be done at the same time.  Some travellers have found out the hard way that they cannot check firearms for their trip if they have missed the firearm reservation deadline.  Amtrak's website recommends that you arrive 1/2 hour early, but travellers have shared online that you should allow at least an hour, and carry a printed copy of Amtrak's firearm policy with you.

The Cob Speaks

No Corn For You!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Boonville, Indiana, October 12-14, 2012: Be There!

Antique Steam and Gas Engine Club 49th Annual Reunion and Show

Image from Google Earth; Click To Enlarge.
Directions: Thresherman’s Park, 2-1/2 miles north on W. New Harmony Road, 1/4 mile off Hwy. 61.
Boonville IN: Contact Richard Dennis (Eight One Two)Eight Nine Seven-One Four Five Three

Steam engines, gas engines, antique tractors, threshing, sawmilling, flea market, and a shady grove.

What Do You Wear For Eye Protection?

The good folks at Lucky Gunner have done some serious research, and posted important information for all of us who need eye protection at work and play.  Go read this article, and then upgrade your eye pro. 

Lucky Gunner is one of the supporters of the Gun Blogger Rendezvous.

Hickok45 Shoots One Of My Favorites

I've had a .44 Redhawk in my modest collection for many years, and I always enjoy shooting it. It is good for head shots on groundhogs at 25 yards with the iron sights, and is fun to stack old oil filters, then shoot the stack down to the bottom. There is enough steel in the Redhawk to make full magnum loads comfortable to shoot, and with medium loads a kid can shoot it. I've always said that mine shoots like a rifle, and I'm sticking to that description. It's fun to watch Hickok shoot those gongs, isn't it? Life is good.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Monday's Coming!

Back To The Old Grind!

Is Homemade Wood Splitter...

...Is Not Safe!!!

One wrong move from being maimed.

Crankin' It Up

The Great White Way Orchestra; November 9, 1922.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Weekend Steam

Lots of good sights and sounds. Click Here to visit the website for this railroad.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Load Your Range Bag For Mr. Completely's July e-Postal Match!

It seems like another life now, but many years ago, I was lying in wait for a groundhog to pop out of its hole, when my hunting buddy whispered, "Don't shoot it in the head."  I asked, "Why not?" and he answered, "Because Daddy eats the brains."  So it is with squirrels.  Head shot, or heart/lungs.  The boiler room is a bigger target, but you may destroy some meat; a head shot must be done perfectly, or passed up.

Billll, of BillsIdleMind demonstrates that he can pull off either shot to take his squirrels cleanly, and maybe serve up squirrels to his dinner guests with head on, or off, depending on individual preferences.  I'll take a hind leg, if you don't mind, Billll.

See if you can show up Billll by shooting the July target, and send your scans to me.  Follow This Link for the contest rules and target.  We will post the results early in August.

Not My Victrola

Another great performance by Hoagy. Shared with us by bvon44.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Two More Training Videos From Ruger!

Dave provides some good thoughts on reloading, and...

...Lorie and Il Ling school us on drawing from concealment.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Hot Air?

On a hot day what would you use to power your little hot air engine? This little beauty is sitting on an ice cube, and it runs just fine.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Take It Out!

 There is a right way to cable a tree to hold bad joints together, and this isn't it.    This cable is wrapped around the stems, killing the cambium layer with pressure, and opening avenues for wood rot fungi in every stem.
 The tree has bad branch angles and ingrown bark, and it should have been replaced before it ever became a mature tree.  The homeowner cabled it together in an attempt to save it, because it's an important shade at the southwest corner of his house...
...but it's just a disaster waiting to happen, and he has decided to take it out before it falls on someone or his home.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Season Up Your Monday Morning Breakfast!

Back To The Old Grind!

Crankin' It Up

The Great White Way Orchestra recorded this lively fox-trot on November 24, 1922.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Not My Victrola

By the composer, Hoagy Carmichael. Uploaded by skorecki7.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Novo Engine Update From Gary Bahre

Gary has been busy, and will be taking his big Novo to Pinckneyville in August. He sent some raw video to us showing his new baby putting along in his shop. It has not been an easy restoration; several important pieces had to be welded and re-machined, parts had to be fabricated, and he had to perform major surgery on the water hopper to weld a rusted out spot on top of the valve cage boss. Thanks for the video, Gary!

Go West, Young Man...

 ...to the Gun Blogger Rendezvous in Reno.  It's less than two months away now, and you need to make your travel plans, and register with Mr. Completely.  

The Rendezvous is not just for bloggers; it is a fantastic meeting for anyone who enjoys shooting or just following the shooting related blogs.  The days at Reno are packed with activities and range trips, but the focus of the event is fundraising for Project Valour-IT, which was begun by Major Chuck Ziegenfuss.

Project Valour-IT provides voice activated laptops for injured troops and has provided thousands of computers over the last several years.  Register and make your travel plans; it's the most fun you will ever have on a brief vacation.

If you have the time, you can beat the high prices of the airlines by taking the train!  I did some checking on the Amtrak site, and found that a one-way ticket from Chicago is only $140.  You can board at many stops between Chicago and Reno, but you can check baggage at only a few stations.  Click this link for the timetable to view those stops.  You can carry firearms with you in checked bags, but you must board at the right stations to do that.  The Amtrak station in Reno is only TWO blocks from the Silver Legacy Hotel-Casino, so you won't even need to hire a cab when you arrive in Nevada. 

California Zephyr
Departs: 2:00 PM                                    Arrives: 8:36 AM
Mon Sep 03 2012                                   Wed Sep 05 2012
Chicago, IL - Union Station  (CHI)          Reno, NV  (RNO)     Duration: 44 hr, 36 mi:    $140.00

From Ottumwa, Iowa:   Departs: 6:53 PM
                                     Mon Sep 03 2012
                                     Ottumwa, IA  (OTM)    $133.00  (No Baggage Check at Ottumwa)
Click Here for a detailed timetable of the Zepyhr, and to see which stops you must use to check baggage.
The prohibited items list is not an exhaustive list. Any item that is similar to the prohibited items below, even if not specifically mentioned, is also prohibited. Amtrak personnel may determine if an item not mentioned in this list is prohibited.
Item Type Carry On Checked Bags

Firearms or ammunition
*Black powder, percussion caps or any ammunition used with a matchlock, flintlock, percussion-cap ignition system or similar type are never permitted; this includes self-loaded, gunpowder-based modern ammunition.
   No     Yes

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Mom's Been Shopping Again

I visited Mom a few days ago, and we stayed inside to beat the heat most of the time.  One of the places we hid from the heat wave was the Coralville Scheel's store, and we spent a lot of time looking at rifles.  Most guys don't spend much time thinking about the fit of rifles, but fit and weight are a big deal if you are a 100 pound octogenarian.  Mom was getting a bit frustrated when a salesman came along and asked we had looked at a Ruger 10/22 Compact.  It fit, and she can stand flat-footed and shoot this fine little gun.  It has bright fiber-optic sights, and she is sticking with them rather than put a scope on it.

We rose early every morning to go to the range while I was home, and over the next two days she ran a brick through her new rifle, and several hundred through her 22/45 Hunter.  She enjoyed having me there to stuff mags, and I enjoyed watching her shoot.

Mom's not entering the July e-Postal contest, but I think she is doing pretty well with her 22/45.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Are You Blue?

 This John Deere power plant is one of 118 built by the tractor maker for the Pure Oil company.

 Seen at the Southern Indiana Antique Machinery show in June.

Monday, July 9, 2012

More Great Instruction From Ruger!

Lorie, Il Ling, and Dave have been busy cranking out videos to guide shooters; three more in the last three weeks.  Thank You Ruger!

I don't have any personal experience with ankle holsters, but many years ago, a friend bought an ankle holster to carry his Smith Airweight, and carried it that way one day on the fireline. Personally, if you and all your friends around you are carrying Pulaskis, I don't think you need a gun to deal with threats in the wilderness, but he did; for ONE day. The rest of that trip, his pistol stayed in camp. But, I guess using one of these holsters is a good skill to have, depending on your circumstances. We can't always be carrying Pulaskis around with us, at least not in an urban landscape.

If you have read this far, I have a hot deal for you. The Ace Hardware store in Washington, Iowa  (Click for address, phone, and map.) sells guns in their sporting goods section, and they have a couple of Ruger Charger pistols. These pistols are based on the ultra-dependable 10-22 action, and are meant for plinking, informal target shooting, and squirrel hunting.  Ruger's suggested retail price on these firearms is $389, and I recently saw one in a large sporting retail outlet priced at $350.  The Ace Hardware store has had these on inventory for too long, and the price is reduced all the way down to $250!  If you are an Iowa resident who wants one of these fine pistols, you better head to Washington soon.  I don't expect them to stay in the display case for very long at this price.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Serious Business

Back To The Old Grind!

Beat Those Heat Wave Doldrums...

...let Pianomn199 do the pumping!  Fascinating Rhythm, by Gershwin, performed by Zez Confrey.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Weekend Steam; Well, A Little Steam

Mostly big timber, but there is a little steam in there. You don't see Dolbeer Donkeys on YouTube very often.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Crankin' It Up

Big Blonde Mama is one we put up a couple years ago, and it's worth listening to again. The Tennessee Ten recorded this jazzy number on July 23, 1923 on Victor # 19130A

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Shoot the Mr. Completely e-Postal This Weekend!

The weekend will be here before you know it, so read this re-post, print your targets, and take the family to the range! The rules for this contest are designed to make high scores, and tune you up for the fall hunting seasons, so No Excuses!


Squirrel season will be starting up in August, so this is a good time to check your sights and your skill to see if you'll be able to put some rodents in the frying pan. We are going to make this an easy contest so everyone can join in the fun.

The object is to hit the kill zones marked on the squirrels without wounding any game.


Click on the photo or the squirrel target for the link to the pdf, to download and print. Shoot your target at 25 feet, (or the nearest distance at your range) with your pistol, two shots for each squirrel, for a total of ten shots per target. Each shot touching the kill zone is worth 10 points. Each shot touching a squirrel, but not touching the kill zone is minus 10 points. If you were really out in the woods trying to bag a squirrel, you would utilize a rest to steady your shot, and that is what you should do for this contest. Any rest from the bench or uprights is OK; your choice!

If you want to shoot the match with a rifle, shoot your target at 50 feet with your choice of rest for your rifle. Shoot twice at each squirrel. We don't want any wounded game, so dial in your sights beforehand.
Write your pistol or rifle info on the target, along with the type of sights you are using; iron, non-magnifying optics, or magnifying scope. Use the name and/or website you want listed in the results. We will sort them out into classes. Shoot the contest with any pistol, rifle, or pellet gun, you want.

Scan or photograph your targets, and e-mail them to: truebluetravelinman (at) gmail (dot) com. Try to have them sent in by the end of July, and we will post the results within a few days.

If you have any difficulty printing from Google Docs, e-mail me at truebluetravelinman (at) gmail (dot) com, and I will send you the target via e-mail.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Well Past The Century Mark

Built in 1900, this old Reid two stroke still runs like a champ. It was on display at the SIAM show at Evansville.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Big Hercules

Beautifully restored Hercules at the Evansville show.

Sunday, July 1, 2012