Monday, November 24, 2014


OK!  According to the rain gauge this has been a very good month for wetness, and around here we like good months for wetness.

Long term average rainfall for November here is 3.36" but this November we pulled down a whopping 8.71", nearly 5 of that in the past 3 days. That puts us 4" over the average annual rainfall with December yet to go. That means that since 2009 when the drought really kicked in we are only down by 17".

But now the sun is back and that's good too!

To celebrate I got the camera out this morning.

This shot proves, despite what some think, that we do in fact have seasons down here in Texas, including a touch of color.

The seasonal changes might be a little more subtle than elsewhere, but then again we don't need a blizzard dumping a couple feet of snow that then hangs around for months to help us appreciate the warmth of a spring morning either. A week or so of freezing nights and daytime highs in the 40's with a stiff north wind will do quite nicely thank you very much!

This is just a lowly well-house, but even the mundane take on a special something in the right light.

And here I was supposed to have a couple photo's taken a little later in the day showing a lone, and very big and scary, snapper sunning itself on the bank at one end of the pond, and way over at the other end, well out of range of being - well - snapped, a taunting clique of various sized box turtles, only I didn't realize until I went to retrieve what arguably might have been the best photos I've ever taken in my life (Of course I have no proof of that but I'm sticking to it.) that the memory card was in the laptop at the time and not in the camera. . .

Sure, when you pull that particular bone-headed stunt a little reminder pops up in the vewfinder; 'No memory card!!'; but it seems to me it would be a simple thing to really idiot proof the whole operation (Because clearly there are real idiots out there!) and just disable the camera when the card isn't in it. . .

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Putting the monkey back in the box, at least until next time

I'm way late in getting this posted as the events that follow happened a while ago now, but I'm finally getting around to it.

If you have a good memory you might remember that I was in the middle of a chainsaw job when said chainsaw fell victim to a wrench the dang monkey was throwing around.

Well a few days later I had opportunity to purchase a few feet of the fuel line I needed and shortly after that the chainsaw once again looked like a chainsaw and not a pile of scrap on the corner of my workbench.

Oh boy! I'm supposed to make this back into something?!!!

The new, shiny yellow fuel line in place and ready to go!

My reassembled throttle controls even look like the before photo I took!!

And humpty all put back together again.

Except that the dang thing wouldn't run worth shiitake!! (And not the mushroom kind. . .) In fact it sounded suspiciously like the 4-wheeler that's been sitting in pieces over in a corner of the barn for months now because I can't seem to make it work despite the hours and hours I've put into it.

The dang thing (Chainsaw and 4-wheeler) won't idle at all and when I open the throttle it bogs down and has no power.

Given my track record with things mechanical, and especially things carburetor, I had virtually no hopes of redemption as I tore the chainsaw back down again.

I had gone on line and done some searching and even watched two videos on installing rebuild kits into chainsaw carburetors and got the impression that the people doing things like this don't think it's that big a deal. But then they've never seen me try it!

I had to get the carburetor out to find the brand and model before I could order a rebuild kit and as long as I had it out I went ahead and took it apart.

 What the hell, it already doesn't work. What's the worst I can do? Make it not work even more??

As long as I had it apart I figured I might as well practice putting it back together again. After all, if I can't manage that there's no sense in spending money on a rebuild kit is there!

So I put on some nitrile gloves, grabbed the air-hose, a face shield and a can of carb cleaner and had at it.

Well I don't know if it was pure luck or if I was suddenly channeling an expert mechanic from the great beyond, but after I did all that screwing around with it the dang thing worked!!

Figuring there was a time limit on this good fortune I quickly suited up in my chaps, long-sleeved shirt and face-shielded hardhat and finished cutting the cribbing I needed with my rejuvenated saw!

With that in place I slapped together a crude platform with some scraps of treated lumber I had laying around and stacked my handful of oak rounds on it where I'll let them dry a few months (The tree was already dead so they've got a good head start on drying already.) before splitting into firewood chunks.

Up until this point I was thinking about trading my basket of 4-wheeler for a couple loads of gravel, but now I'm feeling all manly and macho and just bought a brand new can of carb cleaner, so maybe I'll take another crack at it. . .

If nothing else it will slap the manly right back out of me and I've found that carrying around false manly can be a dangerous thing.