Tag Archives: tools

No game this week, again

Family tragedy struck one of the players in our group as her father-in-law died a few days before game. Also, I have been beset by allergies that have really upset my sleep cycle as my sleep aid is just a double-strength allergy pill, minus the buffers. So, instead of putting me to sleep, it just clears up my nose and eyes for the night until it wears off. I was awake after 0700 this morning even though I put myself to bed by 0500.

I ended up sleeping through most of the race today, but I did manage to tune in for the last 20 or so laps, watching Kevin Harvick chase Joey Logano and almost catch him until Joey used dirty air or lapped cars to slow him down to keep Harvick from passing. It was a master class on how to defend a lead in a Cup race. I’m not a fan of Logano, but I do give credit where credit is due, and Joey drove his butt off keeping Harvick at bay.

No progress has been made in the Sprint-T redesign. I have all the major pieces in place, and until I can get some raw stock, which is really hard to come by these days because of the one-two punch of tariffs and COVID19, I really can’t build anything. Even in the case that I was able to find the raw stock, the combination of the stock thickness and having tools sized for bicycle building and not hot rods leaves me with stock with the dimensions laid out but no way to cut and drill to the sizes needed and make the part. It is frustrating to have drills that won’t handle drill bits over 3/8″ when the smallest hole is just under 1/2″ and the big hole is 9/16″ to allow for the thread depth of the bolts and the tap that cuts the thread so those bolts can screw into the part. It’s a combination of lack of power in the motors and the chucks just not being physically big enough to hold the larger drill bits. And for my cutting tools the 1/4″ thickness is pushing the limits of the equipment because when I bought the tools years ago when I was building bicycles 3mm (1/8″) steel or 5mm aluminum was the heaviest stock I was going to ever cut. Building hot rods wasn’t even on my mind. Let’s just say I was in a bit of a state over cars since someone tried to kill me with one, actually several someones tried several times with varying degrees of success, but nobody actually killed me thank [$DEITY]. So for most of this century since the wreck, I have had varying degrees of antipathy about cars.

OK, let me take inventory of tools, parts and raw stock that I need to complete the Sprint-T. I need something that can make square or mitered cuts in stock at least 1/4″ thick in mild or chrome-moly steel. I need a drill press that can handle 3/4″ holes in the 1/4″ steels, and up to 1/2″ thick in aluminum. I need a welder that will weld over 1/4″ thick steel, and that will weld aluminum. I mean I can use oxy-hydrogen to weld aluminum now, but that is a very tricky technique for someone with cataracts to work with, and I’m not sure that it didn’t contribute to giving me cataracts in the first place. Anyway, after the tools I need lots of raw stock, DOM or chrome-moly seamless tubing in 1.5″ diameter and 0.120″ (7 sticks) and 0.060″ (5 sticks) wall thickness, some 1.25″ diameter DOM and 0.120″ (2 sticks) wall for making the tie rod, drag link, panhard rod, and the torque arm. Also needed is a metric buttload of hardware to connect things that have to be able to move in relation to other things, in various sizes from 3/4″ fine thread (pretty big) to 4-40 (tee-niny).

It’s getting late, so I’m wishing you a good night and pleasant dreams.


Planning a trip

I’m going to make a trip to Harbor Freight tomorrow to pick up some things. I need a new 12v power supply (battery charger) for electrical testing, and they have a sale on kitchen shears ($0.39). Also I need to get a cordless version of their take on a Sawzall . This will be necessary to cut the headlight buckets out of a car or truck in the junkyard so I’ll have a way to mount my headlights in the front fenders.

Along the way I’ll also pick up lottery tickets and some candy for Mrs. the Poet because she’s getting a little stir-crazy from not being able to leave the house. She’s been stuck here since she was released from the hospital back on 3/8. I need to get some stuff before I can do anything more on the Mini Sprint-T.

Speaking of which, I have maybe solved a problem with the Sprint-T. One of the things I want to do is use a Tri-Y exhaust manifold, which is expensive as Hell for LS architecture engines. The reason I want to use this is the Tri-Y configuration improves low and mid-range torque without restricting flow at higher RPM for peak power. Well what I want to do is use a dual inlet, single outlet muffler on both sides to act as a large-volume collector and massively boost low and high RPM power because that’s what theory says it will do. Another thing this will do is quiet down the engine a bunch without restricting it any. For the model there are muffler bodies without inlets or outlets available that can be customized exactly for this application. Unfortunately I can’t link to these because the web site they’re sold from doesn’t let me link to individual parts and when I try the links just go back to the products page. parts See?

So, after lunch I get to catch a bus, wait a while to catch another bus, ride for a while, shop, and wait again for the bus home, unless I time my shopping trip right, then wait some more to catch the bus home. [Yay!/s]

Another place-holder post

Not much to say, I got the butane torch and a pack of AAA cells (some people call them batteries, but some people also say the Earth is flat, and we never went to the moon (the first set is entirely contained within the second set)).

I wasn’t able to find the kind of gloves I was looking for because I had to go catch a bus or spend another hour waiting for the next one, and it was raining. So I made a quick dash down the glove aisle at Harbor Freight but didn’t stop to take a close look at anything. What I was looking for might have been there but I didn’t take the time to look hard enough.

We tried to play some Shadowrun, but the files for today’s game were not in the folder when the GM tried to set up today’s running. So we watched while the GM spent a few hours trying to track down the files before coming to the conclusion she either deleted instead of saving, or that she dreamed/hallucinated the whole thing. Then we spent some time discussing side effects of psychiatric medication (of which everyone in the room and on the chat had experience with) and then discussed ordering out or going out to eat. That was settled by doing a time analysis and deciding we didn’t have time for either one before my drop dead for transit time. I live 1:45 by bus away from where we play, so time-management skills are paramount.

Another skill I need to work on is battery-management for my cell phone, because I left the game site with what was supposed to be 2 hours of battery remaining, and ran out of battery before I got to the bus stop. Fortunately the drivers believed me when I said my GoPass was active with a valid pass when my phone died.

Then I got home and put my phone on the charger and ate dinner.

Stock and tools are on the premises, building to commence soon?

The tools and the last of the stock arrived yesterday, and for the most part I’m happy. The stock that replicates the bars in the 4 link and the swingarms is like wet pasta flexible, but I’m hoping for something with a bit more rigidity when it gets cut to length. Part of it is the long column problem, and part is styrene is just not as rigid as other plastics in part because it is heat-formable. So it’s a worse case scenario of unfavorable physics and materials coming together to make something nobody wants to deal with. Except I have to because reasons.

Technically I don’t have to deal with it, I could buy some 1mm O.D. brass or stainless steel tubing and have a much more rigid stock, but that is not compatible with the rest of the materials I’m using, it doesn’t glue the same and putting the fittings on it would be a bit of a logistics problem not to mention the color-matching issues between painted brass or stainless steel, and styrene. Paint just doesn’t come out the same on the metals as it does on plastic.

Also I played around a bit with the tools and while I can do more than I could with the big knife and the single-edge razor blades I was working with I’m still not happy with the control I have making cuts in thick materials like the 0.040 sheet I got this week. What I really need is something like the big knife, but as sharp as the razor blades, so I have the control I have with the big knife. I think I saw something in the Harbor Freight catalog that will do the trick, but I’ll know more when I get to the store when I go to get the butane torch.

And I need to get to bed now, so this is the end for tonight.

I do stupid things sometimes

And yesterday was one two of those times. First stupid thing was extending my walk after ordering the hone I needed to install the kingpins and spindles on the axle. The second stupid thing was refusing the ride home after I started hobbling instead of walking. I can barely walk now because of the pain in the balls of my feet. I walked for 4.4 miles last night which is about 2 miles more than normal. Since the end of May I have walked more than 33 miles which averages out to 2 miles a day, and there were days I couldn’t walk because of pop-up showers in the evenings. But there were 2 extra-point check-ins on my mobile game that gave me an extra 70 points for checking in. That’s the equivalent of an extra 14 check-ins over and above the 25 I get per day, so you can see why I would want to get those check-ins. If I grab a bunch of those I will be back in the black for the weekly $1 gift card. Now the smart thing to do would be to catch the bus to the Wendy’s and order fries and drink soda all day while I walk back and forth between the two extra point check-ins and collect 245 points in 8 hours. That’s almost 10 cents! 😀 and right at 2 miles, and I could take the bus home or within 0.4 miles of home.

I have made zero progress on the TGS2 outside of buying the hone, that will be here tomorrow afternoon. Seriously, I can’t even think right now because of the pain. That kinda worries me, because I’m the guy who wrecked his knees and barely felt it, pulled a couple of my own teeth without painkillers, only took a painkiller because they made me on my last operation, and only needed one on the previous operation. Having something hurt this bad must mean I destroyed something. In fact I think I will take a little lie down because my feet hurt so bad.

That was easy, time consuming but easy

I feel accomplished today. I went for a walk and picked up something for Mrs. the Poet, then got some tools (files) from the hardware for working on the mid-bucket and the Mini Sprint-T, got a present for the B-Day party I was invited to on Saturday, and fitted one of the steering arms to the spindle all by 2100. I had to walk 4.2 miles to get all of the stuff done that I had to leave the house to do, and then spend about 2 hours filing tiny amounts of metal off the steering arm until it fit flat against the spindle registers. It’s a snug fit, almost an interference fit, but fit it does. The material is so hard that there were no actual filings, just a dark powder that got my hands dirty but didn’t actually spread anywhere. I used a mill bastard file that was designed for precision work by the captive brand for Lowe’s, Kobalt. It worked very well. Tomorrow I will take some pictures of the arm I didn’t work on and the one I did work on and show the difference in fit on the spindle.

I also used the walk to rack up check-ins on my phone game that pays me money to play. I hit my limit again. I may not be racking up the big points, but I’m still racking up points to get more gift cards. And then next month I start selling plasma to make up for the gigs I lost in 2016. So Yay! me.

PSA, Opus the Unkillable

I need (get) to buy more tools, and the Feed

Yep, that old guy thing, Always Want More Tools, has reared its head at Casa de El Poeta. I was trying to use that music wire but was stymied by the fact I did not have the tools I needed to break into the packaging! Imagine that, all those tools and none of them will allow me to get to my purchase. What I need to cut the wires containing my music wire is a pair of diagonal cutters, colloquially known as “dykes”. So I will take a short walk to the local home repair and hardware store to purchase a pair or maybe two in different sizes. What I have been using to cut wire with has been the cutter on the Vice Grip pliers as it gives me a lot of additional leverage for those days when the arthritis in my fingers acts up. But it cuts with the back of the jaws, and to snip the wires holding the music wire together I need something that will cut with the tip of the jaws. So, road trip!

The pedestrian who was collateral damages in a road rage incident between a cabbie and a cyclist in NYC last month was released from hospital this week. Video: Tourist Maimed By Cab Last Month Finally Leaves Hospital Yep that pedestrian, and that road rage incident. The driver has yet to be charged in the assault.

A cyclist is critically injured running a red light while riding 2-up on a single rider bike. Teen Injured In Car-Bike Accident Remains In ICU And with the non-helmet wearing we have the trifecta of blame the cyclist. Intersection wreck, use the protocols to avoid, and get the infrastructure right to prevent. Oh and don’t ride 2-up on a bike only made to carry one person.

Update on the deadly car/4 cyclist wreck in NH over the weekend. Bicyclists in deadly N.H. crash shared bond What wasn’t in this report but was an update to a link I already posted is the driver of the weapon vehicle had already been stopped once and ticketed for driving without a license. Had she been arrested for illegal possession of a deadly weapon this wreck would not have happened. Had she been given the ticket and the car impounded until a licensed driver could pick it up this would not have happened. I smell lawsuits coming, whole herds of them, and they stink. More Video Shows Stretch of Road Where Danvers Cyclist Was Mortally Wounded

Another report on the charity cyclist injured in a buzz job in the most deadliest state in the US to walk or ride a bike. Cyclist Riding for Charity Injured in Hit-and-Run While on His Way to Miami The cyclist was just a couple of days away from completing a more than 10K mile trip around the US to all 30 MLB stadiums.

Another blind driver kills another cyclist. Mass. woman killed in crash while raising money for M.S. charity This has not been a good weekend for MA cyclists riding for charity. Hit-from-behind by a blind driver, protocols to avoid or to mitigate the damages, and get the infrastructure right to prevent. As part of that infrastructure make driving while blind a crime. ZZ Top, we need you to update that song from the ’70s “Arrested For Driving While Blind”.

Update on Dale Stetina. Dale Stetina, ex-pro cyclist injured in Lefthand crash, moved to Craig Hospital for rehab Rehab from brain injuries has come a long way from when I had my wreck, but it’s still a tough row to hoe.

More on that left-crossed cyclist killed near SLC UT. Cyclist killed after colliding with minivan I notice they have already started blaming the cyclist for not wearing a glow-in-the-dark clown costume. Still an intersection wreck, use the protocols to avoid and get the infrastructure right to prevent. More Police identify cyclist, 58, killed in crash with minivan in Sandy

Another link to the kid right-crossed in CA while he was going to school. Boy on bike hit, killed by SUV outside Byron school And more BYRON: 12yo boy killed riding bike to Byron Middle School And we have another victim of a blind driver. Right turn that went directly over the cyclist that had just passed in front of her face. Nothing a cyclist of any age could have done to avoid this nor could infrastructure that still allowed parents to drop their kids at school in light armored vehicles. Also Hundreds attend vigil for 12YO boy killed near school

Update on the CA cyclist injured on “Nerd Avenue”. Bicyclist in critical condition following hit-and-run in Chico They found the driver, now will they prosecute? Hit-from-behind wreck, use the protocols to avoid, but from the description of the wreck I don’t think anything short of barrier protected infrastructure would prevent a wreck like this.

Update on a wreck in the Great White North. Popular cyclist killed on the road Nothing new on the mode, she “fell” into oncoming traffic.

An act of terrorism in Oz. Mountain bike riders lucky to escape rope strung between trees on Clarence downhill run Just glad that nobody got hurt this time (unlike the last 3 times).

Infrastructure! news from just down the road a bit. Say Goodbye to 267 Parking Spaces on Lavaca and Guadalupe Goodbye and good riddance.

Infrastructure news from CA, good news this time. Cyclists will get 3-foot buffer under new law Just another law for CHP to ignore or wrongfully interpret.

And those were all the links about bicycles that gave me fits today.

Billed @€0.02, Opus