Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Oblong, Illinois, August 9-11...

Crawford County, Illinois has a long history of oil production, and the Oblong Engine Show (CLICK)  in August is the place to go in Illinois if you want to see vintage oilfield machinery.  The powerhouse and wells you see in this video is a sample of what you will see if you head to Crawford County the weekend of August 9, 10, and 11, 2013.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Nellie, A Rare Friend

 Nellie's pretty ringing purr always makes me think of this:

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Youth Shooting Sports Alliance

From Ruger's GunBroker page: "Up for auction is a blued Speed-Six®, 9mm Parabellum, double-action revolver. The serial number is 159-95801 and the rollmark date is April 26, 1983. The revolver has never been fired beyond normal testing during manufacture. The Speed-Six revolvers were first introduced in 1971 and were in production until 1988." CLICK to read the entire description, and to place your bid on GunBroker.

AND!!...Take a peek at next week's auction!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Tuesday Turbo Boost

Turkey Creek String Band. Listen 'til you can smile like these kids.

Reborn To Run

The nearest thing to an SUV in the 1920's was a Model T Roadster.  It was lighter than the other body options, and as long as you carried a set of tire chains, you were just about unstoppable. 

When the 1927 model year came out, the T was at its final stage.  It had balloon tires and lower compression than in the early years of production, but it had wire wheels instead of wooden spokes, and the gas tank was up behind the firewall instead of under the seat, so it could climb a hill without having to turn around and back up.  The lack of brakes on the wheels, and lots of room under the fenders allowed it to chug through miles of nasty, rutted mud roads.  It's no wonder that people still love to drive them.

A glimpse under the hood shows that this car is meant to go on the road, and is not for sitting in the garage.  The timer and coils are gone, and a distributor fires the plugs.  An alternator replaces the original generator, and if you look closely...

You don't have to drop to your knees to check the oil!

Pretty neat, ain't it? 

Friday, July 26, 2013

Weekend Steam: Be There!

Boonville, Indiana: Steam and gas engines, threshing, sawmilling, tractors, super flea market, great food, and the weather is awesome for July. Gas up the car, load up the family and GO!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Not Dead By A Long Shot

Check out those rear tires and you have to wonder what's under the bonnet.

PS:  Brat and I will pull out a new record tomorrow.

Billl Shows Us How To Shoot His Target!!!

The end of July and the end of Billll's e-Postal contest is coming soon.  Billll has drawn a picture for us, showing us how to shoot a really impressive target.  I will get on this tomorrow, and so should you.  Lots of Luck!  The good news is that you don't have to be this perfect to shoot a perfect join in the fun!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Youth Shooting Sports Alliance

Ruger's auction this week is one that will grab your attention!  This pair of consecutively numbered .44 Carbine rifles was rollmarked in September 1982, and they were part of an 1800 gun run in the 1985 Ruger catalog to mark the end of .44 Carbine production.  The MSRP in 1985 for a .44 Carbine was $495, which I think would translate to about $1500 today.  The current bid is well under the inflation adjusted price, but I expect that to change come Wednesday when this rare and beautiful set of guns will sell.  Click Over to GunBroker to read the entire description and to place your bid.  It's for a good cause; 100% of the proceeds go to the Youth Shooting Sports Alliance.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Mondays Should Look This Good

Back To The Old Grind!

Boonville, IN's summer show starts next Friday!

Gun Blogger Rendezvous: Let Us Count The Reasons To Go

In addition to lots of range time shooting your own guns, you will also get to shoot other people's guns!

And that's just a start.  Here are several more good reasons to go to Reno.

Gun Blogger Rendezvous, Let Us Count The Ways by TrueBlueSam

Friday, July 19, 2013

Weekend Steam: Boonville's Show Is July 26-28, 2013!

 The Antique Steam and Gas Engine Club of Boonville, Indiana is hosting their 50th annual show next weekend. You will see steam engines, threshers, sawmills, gas engines and tractors, at the shady showgrounds just north of Boonville on the west side of Hwy 61. Click Here for contact info.


Thursday, July 18, 2013

Crankin' It Up: Four Sides In One Take!

William Tell Overture by TrueBlueSam

The William Tell Overture: Parts 1 & 2 by the Victor Concert Orchestra, May 12, 1915; Parts 3 & 4 by Arthur Pryor's Band.  Part 3, September 24, 1909, and Part 4, May 4, 1909.  Through the magic of editing you all miss Brat reaching down and grabbing the turntable, and drawing blood as I try to stop and re-start the record. 

Sorry about the clunks you hear after re-starts; My feet's too big!  It really was one take, (re-starts are edited out) but I have a couple re-starts on Part 3.  Brat grabbed the turntable, and while I was starting over he grabbed me!  Drew blood, he did!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The Rio Salado Target Terminators Made It To Southern Illinois!

I hope you all have been reading about the trials and tribulations of the Rio Salado Target Terminators and their journey from Arizona to Sparta, Illinois.  Danno (SandCastleScrolls) and his Sand Castle Son (SmallestConservative) flew out to St. Louis on Tuesday, and the rest of the team, the coach, and two dads made the trip on the road, towing a camper.  Their vehicle threw a rod before they were out of Arizona, and the rest of the journey is the stuff of legends.  Go read about it on Danno's blog.

They set up camp after 11 PM Tuesday night, and they all were ready to shoot Wednesday morning, right on time.  I scheduled time off from work when Danno let me know that they might need the loan of a shotgun, so even though all the team and hardware arrived, I drove over to Sparta to meet the team and see them shoot a few sets.  Out in Arizona they have to be mindful of scorpions and rattlesnakes, but in Southern Illinois we have chiggers, ticks, deer flies, buffalo gnats, and West Nile infected  mosquitoes.  I brought along a bottle of Buggins to keep off the flying pests, and 100% Deet spray for their ankles.  I have never forgotten my first encounter with gangs of chiggers, and I wouldn't wish that on anyone.

The team from Arizona wound up the day in fine style, meeting the Potterfields (Midway USA) from Columbia, Missouri.  Click over to the SandCastleSon's blog to see the photos.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Nasty Little Buggers: Bagworms!

Bagworms are with us every summer, appearing in May in Southern illinois, but you won't notice them unless you look for them.  They start out small, and you have to really look hard to see them in late May and early June.  Now that we are in mid-July, they are easy to see, but most folks don't notice the insect in its little camo-sack; they notice them by the damage they cause.

These insect larvae will just about double in size during the remaining summer months, and they blend in well enough that most homeowners don't notice them until the needles on their favorite conifer are nearly gone.

Will your tree recover from this much damage?  If you kill the bagworms now, there is hope,but you should have done it a couple weeks back.  Malathion, the recommended insecticide, often won't kill bagworms with the recommended application strength once the larvae are as large as these.  BT spray is more effective at killing large larvae, but you should go to a garden shop and buy a new bottle if your BT has been sitting on the shelf in your garage for a few years.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Worth Every Tear

Kipling Says: We've sorrow enough in the natural way,
When it comes to burying Christian clay.
Our loves are not given, but only lent,
At compound interest of cent per cent,
Though it is not always the case, I believe,
That the longer we've kept 'em, the more do we grieve;
For, when debts are payable, right or wrong,
A short-time loan is as bad as a long -
So why in - Heaven (before we are there)
Should we give our hearts to a dog to tear? 

Read The Entire Poem.

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Youth Shooting Sports Alliance

Ruger keeps on amazing us every week with the wonderful treasures they are pulling out of their safe. This Military Model Service Six is a special revolver indeed. Ruger says: "We have for auction a Service-Six® Military Model double-action revolver. The serial number on this revolver is 153-55968, and the test fire date is April 6, 1978. The revolver has never been fired beyond normal testing during manufacture and was packaged in a special preservative foil wrap for over thirty years. The revolver was removed from the packaging so you can see what you are bidding on. An original Technical Manual for the Service-Six Military Model revolver is included with this auction. Sturm, Ruger produced this .38 Special revolver for the U.S. Army Armament Material Development and Readiness Command, and is marked “U.S.” at the right front of the frame." CLICK HERE to read the rest of the description and to place your bid on

True Blue Sam's Advice For The Love Worn

Those anniversaries sure are piling up, and there isn't much help out there for finding just the right gift every year.  You all probably remember that 35 is Ratchet Loppers.   Is a shovel an appropriate gift for 38?  You have to be careful treading here.  It is the perfect gift...

...If it's a Super Shovel!  Don't make the mistake of buying your wife a plain old round nose shovel, or something like this might happen to you!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Stevens Sure Shot: One More Reason You Should Go To Reno!

Engineering Johnson has announced a fantastic surprise for folks who attend the Gun Blogger Rendezvous this year.  EJ bought this Stevens Sure Shot, cleaned off the grime and corrosion and will be adding it to the raffle prizes at the annual Rendezvous in September.  CLICK HERE to go over to his blog and read all about this fine little firearm.  THEN, click over to the Gun Blogger Rendezvous site for all the information you need to register and make your travel plans.

The addition of this little rifle brings the number of guns being raffled to three.  Hi-Point will be donating another of their fine pistol caliber carbines, and Ruger will be sending a stainless .357 Blackhawk to Mr. Completely for the raffle. 

The Gun Blogger Rendezvous isn't just for bloggers; it's for anyone who is interested in shooting, Second Amendment rights, and following the gun blogs.  You will meet and visit with other shooters, from the casual ones to world class competitive shooters.  The Rendezvous is very much like a family reunion, and you will have three days of range activities, plus great meals, stimulating speakers, and of course, the big raffle to raise money for Project Valour-IT.  Don't miss it!  Click the links, register, and make your travel plans.

Here It Comes Again, Already

                                                                     Back To The Old Grind!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Not My Victrola: Farewell To A Friend

It hasn't been very long since Major Chuck Ziegenfuss took down his blog, and now another blogger associated with the Rendezvous has shut his door; it brought this Woody Guthrie song to my mind, even if it's from a different place, another time. It's always hard to say goodbye to friends, and this song captures that. We will miss you, Derek. Uploaded by Alberto Al, and copied from the Library of Congress. The Dustbowl years came up in conversation with Mom recently. The day she was born, the temp was 104 Farenheit. That was an at-home birth, pre-electric fans and air conditioning. That would be a tough day to push out a baby.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Weekend Steam: I Want One Of These For The Pond!

This fine little steam boat is a home-built project from Sri Lanka. Too Much Fun.

Crankin' It Up: Skipper Joins Team Brunswick; Brat Is Not Impressed

The Whistler And His Dog by TrueBlueSam

Arthur Pryor's Band recorded this rare novelty number on June 18, 1913.  Skipper, the Schipperke wanted to be in on this one with Brat, the record being about a dog and all.  Brat stayed on his end of the Brunswick, and wasn't too happy about a dog invading his space.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Floral Jocularity

Some People Keep You In Their Thoughts...

...some keep you in their prayers; squared!  Our friend Father Malottke prints these on an antique press in his shop, performs a Mass for you, and never forgets anniversaries or birthdays.  It's not easy with Parkinson's Disease dragging him down.  Thank You, Father Malottke.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Disappearing Act

You Pick!

A) Ramshackle
B) Shabby
C) Dilapidated
D) Help Me, I'm Melting!

Prob'ly A Good Story Here

Next to an oil lease road, out in the Middle-Of-Nowhere.  The body looks good, it has air in the tires, but it's being swallowed by the encroaching jungle.  It looks too good; too useful to be abandoned.

This one is on the other end of the same property, so it's a pattern.

The folks at American Forest Foundation would have a cow if they saw how their sign is being displayed, but the landowner has grown a lot more trees than any of those folks have.  I'm not going to complain.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Gun Blogger Rendezvous VIII Schedule, at Mr. Completely!

Mr. Completely has posted the schedule for the Reno Gun Blogger Rendezvous on his blog, and this year is bigger and better than ever.  New activities and new sponsors make GBR VIII a must-attend-event for bloggers and blog followers.  Mr. C has scheduled three days of activities at the shooting range, with bowling balls being launched on the final day.  You don't want to miss that!   Click over to Mr. Completely, or the Gun Blogger webpage to read all about it, and to register for this annual reunion of bloggers and blog friends.

Here is a slide show of Derek, The Packing Rat's photos from the 2009 Rendezvous.  The bloggers visited the Reno Scheel's store that year.  This year the plan is to visit Cabela's.

Ruger's Auction To Benefit Youth Shooting Sports Alliance

Ruger's auction this week is special, indeed!  It is a No. 1 Rifle built to celebrate Sturm-Ruger's fiftieth anniversary, with select Circassian walnut, engraving, and gold decorations.  It is chambered in 45-70.  The suggested retail price in 1999 was $1950, and the current price isn't a whole lot higher than that, allowing for inflation.  Dig deep in those pockets and click over to GunBroker to place your bid.

June e-Postal Scores Are Up At Engineering Johnson

Zeke had a good turnout for the June contest, and the good scores are gratifying.  It looks as though everyone is getting better at shooting these targets every month, and that's a good thing.  Nobody's beating Mr. C, though.  Go look at the numbers and read Zeke's comments.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Not A Garden In Sight

 The boneyard.  Lots of spare parts, and the fence makes them invisible to folks passing by.

Beautifully restored 1969 IH Cub Cadet, with a home-engineered loader on the front end.

It fires right up.  The only part that is not stock (besides the loader) is the custom bent exhaust stack.

The brand new wiring harness was located with an online auction service.  The generator also serves as the starter for the Kohler engine.

I wish I could have taken photos of his very rare, mid-1950's Economy garden tractor.  It was rigged with a hydraulically operated blade for pushing snow, and it looked nearly brand new.  The Economy was parked in a tight little garden shed, and good photos weren't possible.  This lineup is full of restoration projects for years to come.  Like any obsession, One's Too Many, and A Hundred's Not Enough.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

It Was A Great Weekend, A Long Weekend, But...

...Back To The Old Grind!
Dang; it hurts just to think of Monday.

Shootout At Lakewood Marshall's Corral

The Lakewood Marshalls, Cisne, Illinois have their monthly match the first Saturday every month, and it is always fun to drop in and see some of the action.  They are a friendly bunch, and they let me watch, even though I don't have a cowboy hat or boots.  Just like any shooting event, you want to bring eye and ear protection so you can get up close and see what goes on.  I recommend that you use real safety glasses with side protection, because there is some splash-back going on with so many rounds hitting the steel plates, especially if you are trying to photograph the shooters.  Our friend Pine Ridge Jack was shooting black powder in his guns the day this video was shot, and as usual, he gave me more free education during our brief visit.

Jack drops his spent brass into a plastic jug containing a mix of alcohol, Murphy's Oil Soap and water.  All of the black powder fouling is loosened up by the time he gets home, and the final cleaning of his empties is easy.  He showed his cartridge block that he takes to the loading bench.  It has ten holes for his rifle rounds, and two sets of five holes for his revolver cartridges, so he doesn't get crossed up or lose count while he loads.

Here is some of the action you will see at a SASS Cowboy Shoot.  I have cut and moved segments so that you can see the rifle action, the revolvers, and the shotguns together as groups.  The different choices in hardware can be a bit confusing to newcomers.  One of the rifles is a repro of the Colt Lightning rifle, and it is a quick shooter.

 Safety first!  Rifles and revolvers are loaded under supervision... is unloading after your stage is completed.  Jack drops his brass into a cleaning solution when he unloads.
 Jack's cartridge organizer.  It's a wooden block with a leather cover that snaps down.

Little things like this make shooting more enjoyable.

Lot's of neat hardware.

Friendly folks in the town!  They will shoot again the first Saturday in August, weather permitting.  Be There!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Not My Victrola: Life Ain't Fair

While Lawrence Welk haunted the airwaves on Saturday nights during my childhood, Ted Lewis was playing nightclubs to make a living. I seek out Ted Lewis records; I've never done that for Lawrence Welk. Everybody's Not Happy, Lawrence. We were robbed! Here is a great Ted Lewis recording of The Bugle Call Rag, courtesy of John Engels. You can always tell it's Ted Lewis when he gets that clarinet wound up.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Weekend Steam: Who Could Ask For Anything More?

Steam trains, explosions, lever actions, Ann Margaret, and John Wayne.  I haven't watched the Train Robbers since it came out forty years ago.  I need to fix that soon.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Glorious Fourth!

From USMarineBand And...More!!! We can't have a Fourth of July without this one.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Oh, Crap

Click Image To Enlarge.

Cascading Infirmities

A: Swayback
B: Dilapidated
C: Decrepit
D: All Of The Above