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Sunday, March 1, 2015

Yesterday's storm wasn't huge, but it left two or three inches on the ground, so I took the roadster out for a couple of pictures. Wrapping ropes around the rear wheels helped to get some traction in the snow. Back in the shop, I readjusted the reverse band and filled the side lamps and tail light. All the kerosene I had in them a couple of years ago had evaporated.  I also  made corrections and added a little to  the new web page I made yesterday. Looking at the forecast, I'm happy to see a warm-up on the way. All this snow will soon be gone. Next week is supposed to bring high fifties, followed by high sixties. I'm ready.  



Monday, March 2, 2015

Today's main chores in the shop were fixing some ineptly intalled tacks on the roadster, and polishing.




Tuesday, March 3, 2015

It was bill-paying day. I spent a big chunk of the morning paying bills online and writing checks for the local ones. It was a relatively warm day, in the forties, and I was going to take the roadster to town in the afternoon,  but thought better of it when a bit of moisture began falling. The forecast shows sunny days in the sixties next week, so maybe I can do some T driving then.


Wednesday, March 4, 2015

White stuff fell all morning; first sleet, then sleet and snow, then just snow. When it was all over I think it amounted to less than an inch. I got back to work on the tool box, sanding and then spraying more primer on a few spots that still needed a little filling. In the afternoon I got busy on cleaning out a carburetor, then went to town for shopping. The farm supply is having a closeout sale on winter clothes, so I bought a new coat for next winter. I got there just in time. It was the last one in my size. It was marked down from $49 to $28. I looked at winter shirts while I was there, but decided to wait and see if they drop the prices some more. A couple of them would be nice to have, but I don't really need them. If the price drops more, I'll get them. If not, I'll get along fine without them.  





Carb float valve needles, before & after repair.


Thursday, March 5, 2015

As the snow melted outside, I spent the day finishing up the carburetor I was working on yesterday, and did more sanding and priming on the tool box. By the end of the day the only snow left was a few little patches in shady places. Chances are that will be the last snow of the season, and any more moisture will be rain.


Friday, March 6, 2015

This morning I did more sanding and priming on the tool box, installed the newly cleaned carburetor on the touring, and polished the horn on the roadster. In the afternoon I got out and split the last few pieces of the big old tree that fell down last fall and has been supplying heat this winter. The wood-burning season is winding down. There will still be some cold evenings, but fewer of them, and soon it will be time to start building the wood supply for next winter.  
Saturday, March 7, 2015

Variety was the order of the day. I drove up to the fairgrounds and checked out an auction, but didn't see enough of interest to make me stay. I moved the Suburban, which I had left east of the barn, because I don't like the idea of a big dead cottonwood there falling on it. I parked it where no trees can get to it. I finished indexing all my January digital photos. I dyed one of the new leather pads for the roadster's top iron saddles. It was such a nice day that I took the roadster for a drive around the block (two miles). I would have gone farther, but I didn't want to take the time for more. I replaced the distributor condenser in the non-starting Dodge so it will start. I finished the day removing a leaking wheel cylinder from the Dodge, taking it apart, and cleaning it. Tomorrow I'll run a cylinder hone in it and hope that will smooth the inside enough to stop the leak.


Sunday, March 8, 2015

Today's main job  had to do with that wheel cylinder.  I wanted to use a drill press, one of my cheap auction purchases, to run a hone in the cylinder.  To do that I needed to fix the vise in place, so I spent a good chunk of the morning grinding and filing a couple of square-head bolts to hold it down.
At noon I drove over to Oxford to see what was for sale at the Patterson auction. Not enough to make me stay. Instead I fired up the chain saw and dismantled some dead branches in the yard. Splitting the wood finished my day.


Monday, March 9, 2015

Unexpected plumbing was on today's agenda. A big puddle of water appeared on my kitchen floor. A bit of investigation revealed that the drain  from the sink had  settled and disconnected, so I had to go to the cellar
and raise the pipe to make the connection, then wire it in place. Leak solved. Meanwhile, I kept the hone running in that wheel cylinder all day. The inside surface is getting smoother, but it's mighty slow going. Maybe it will be done sometime tomorrow. In the afternoon the temperature got above 50, so I drove the roadster to town for groceries. The forecast shows several days of upper sixties, so I'll do some more Model T driving.


Tuesday, March 10, 2015

I left the hone running in that wheel cylinder all day while I worked in the shop. I aired up the tires on the touring and the roadster, and tightened front wheel hub nuts on the roadster. While I was at it I replaced a couple of bad hub bolts. I got back to work on the tool box, sanding it with 600 grit paper, then going over it with 800 grit. I should have it ready for final painting tomorrow. In the afternoon I went to town in the roadster again. My Model T driving is improving, but I did stall it at a stop signal and kept a couple of cars behind me waiting while I restarted. I've spent a lot more time working on these old cars than driving them, so I need practice.


Wednesday, March 11, 2015

It was a busy day. I finished honing the wheel cylinder from the Dodge, and went online to find  the new rubber parts for it.  I  sandblasted  top saddle parts from the roadster and painted them, and painted that tool box I've been working on. 


Painted box

Blasted parts

Painted parts


Thursday, March 12, 2015

 
Never went off the place today, again. With the arrival of warm weather, I got started on yard work. I spent about an hour and a half in the back yard with clippers and Tordon RTU, cutting off little trees and poisoning the stumps. About a half dozen were too big for the clippers and I had to bring out the chain saw. I cleared about 300 square feet, and there's about that much still left to do in that part of the yard. In the afternoon I got back to work on the house, removing old shingles from the back wall. I wasn't surprised to find that there are some rotten boards I'll have to replace. The shingles need to come off the wall by the back porch before I remove the old roofing from the porch. That's the last roof I have to fix on the house. Meanwhile, the hone was running on my pickup's lower rear wheel cylinder. Tomorrow I'll paint the upper and lower cylinders and should have them installed before the new rubber parts I ordered get here.  



Thursday, March 12, 2015
 
Never went off the place today, again. With the arrival of warm weather, I got started on yard work. I spent about an hour and a half in the back yard with clippers and Tordon RTU, cutting off little trees and poisoning the stumps. About a half dozen were too big for the clippers and I had to bring out the chain saw. I cleared about 300 square feet, and there's about that much still left to do in that part of the yard. In the afternoon I got back to work on the house, removing old shingles from the back wall. I wasn't surprised to find that there are some rotten boards I'll have to replace. The shingles need to come off the wall by the back porch before I remove the old roofing from the porch. That's the last roof I have to fix on the house. Meanwhile, the hone was running on my pickup's lower rear wheel cylinder. Tomorrow I'll paint the upper and lower cylinders and should have them installed before the new rubber parts I ordered get here. 


Friday, March 13, 2015

Morning chores included wire brushing the rust off those two brake cylinders, masking them, and painting them. While I worked today, I had a hose running at a trickle to wet the ground around the rose bushes in front of the house. Coming out of an unusually dry winter, the drought continues, and I'll have to do some watering this spring, especially for the young plants. When I went to town for groceries this afternoon I stopped at the co-op and picked up another quart of Tordon to slaughter more inconvenient trees. I traveled to town by roadster to get in some driving practice. With all the work I've been doing on Model T's for the last couple of years, I haven't had much of a chance to drive them. I have to concentrate on what I'm doing. I haven't done enough Model T driving to do it automatically without thinking about it. After I got home and put away the groceries, I spent the rest of the day taking more rotten shingles off the north wall of the house. I got rid of all the ones over the back porch, so next I can start taking the old roofing off of that.  


Saturday, March 14, 2015

Winter is winding down, but it hasn't quit yet. A north wind made the high forties feel colder, so I put on my winter clothes when I went to work on the house. The only roof that I still have to do on the house is the back porch, so today I took off all the old roofing. Some of the old boards are rotten and will have to go, but I'll save all the ones I can, especially if they're where they can be seen. After I got the roofing off I set about adapting a scaffold to sit behind the porch. I got that one almost finished by quitting time, and tomorrow I'll make a smaller one to sit on the east side of the porch so I can work on the thing from all sides.


Sunday, March 15, 2015

This morning I put up a scaffold behind the porch and built another to go beside it. I spent the rest of the day taking off old roofing and rotten boards.
   




Monday, March 16, 2015

In the morning I worked on my shopping list for the Chickasha swap meet, which is later this week. I'm including pictures of some items on the list so I'll know them if I see them. The rest of the day I worked on the porch, taking off the rest of the old roofing, removing some rotten boards, vaccuming up the dirt and trash, and pulling the roofing nails that remained. Tomorrow I'll put away the tools and tarp the area, as rain is predicted for Wednesday. Then I'll get ready to be off to the swap meet sometime Wednesday.


Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Winter clothes were the uniform of the day, at least to start. It wasn't terribly cold, in  the forties, but the wind made it feel colder. With weather coming tomorrow, the main job was putting away all the tools and putting
up tarps. Getting tarps in place seems to take forever, especially the first time. If there's a stong wind blowing, that makes it The Job From Hell. Fortunately today's wind wasn't terrible, and I had the job done in a little over three hours. With time out for groceries and to gas up the car, I did a little preparing for my expedition to Okieland tomorrow. I've been making up a list of parts I want to find, and including pictures so I'll know them if I see them
.


Friday, March 20, 2015

Spring! I still had a fire this evening to warm the chill, but the forecast shows several days in the seventies beginning tomorrow.
I began the day in Chickasha, still bargain hunting. By the time it was over I had found almost everything I went for, and had fun visiting with my fellow Model T wizards.  I was home by 3:30 and  had everyting put away by five.


Saturday, March 21, 2015

The day started with a drive to an auction west of Geuda Springs. Finding absolutely nothing of the slightest interest, I came home and spent the rest of the day dismantling the back porch roof. The rafters all have rot, so I have to rebuild the whole thing from the bottom up. I'll save as much as I can, but some of it will have to be replaced.



  



Sunday, March 22, 2015

This morning I finished removing the rest of the porch roof. Cleaning up the debris and removing loose stones I found the east wall solid, but the west wall had a major crack and the front part was wobbly. So I spent the rest of the day with a hammer and chisel, removing stones. I'll have to dismantle the wall down to about four feet above the ground and rebuild it with new mortar.  It's unexpected discoveries like this that make a job take a lot longer than expected.  



Monday, March 23, 2015

Rising late, doing laundry, and running other errands didn't leave me much time for working on the back porch. I did get started removing stones from the northwest corner, working with a hammer and chisel to loosen them. As I took each one off, I took a picture of the next  one to show its position. I'm laying them out on the ground in a row as I take them off so I can put them back in the same order. I hope when it's all done the porch will look much like it did eighty years ago, without the cracked masonry and rotten wood.





Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Today I finished the Great Dismantling of the back porch, removing the west window and frame.  This afternoon when I went to town for groceries I stopped at the lumber yard and bought building materials. Tomorrow morning I'll get started on the rebuilding.


Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Not much got done on the porch today.  I chiseled old mortar off the top remaining stone and vacuumed up the debris.  About ten a sprinkle arrived,  and the forecast predicted actual rain, so I quit work on the porch and put up the tarps.  With time out to plant a rose bush, replacing a dead one, I spent most of the day removing screws and nails from scrap lumber and cutting it up for firewood. It turned out I could have worked on the porch, because after that brief little sprinkle the predicted rain never arrived. That's OK. What I did needed to be done.


Thursday, March 26, 2015

Today I took another vacation from the rear porch project to work on some new wheels for the roadster. My front wheels have loose felloes and spokes, with daylight showing between wood and metal, and one of the rear wheels is the wrong kind for this car.  So at Chickasha last week I bought some rims, and I'll send those to the wheel shop with some hubs I already had, and have some new wheels made up. Today's job was cutting and driving out the old bent rivets, and hunting up some good hubs of the type that's correct for 1915. I still have to sand blast all the parts to have them ready for assembly. Last Saturday I talked to Noah Stutzman, the wheelwright, and he said the turn around time is currently about five weeks. I want to have everything ready to send to him early next week so I can have my new wheels sometime in May.



Friday, March 27, 2015

A morning in the thirties and a cold north wind inspired me to work inside today. I spent the morning working on a piece I'm doing for the Vintage Ford, mostly just taking some of the pictures for it. There will be some writing involved, but most of it will be photos. In the afternoon I started getting parts ready for my new wheels. Actually it was one part, one of the front hubs. It took some time to remove the stubborn outer plate, then it took a lot of time to remove the wrecked inner bearing cup. It was mighty stubborn, and it took a lot of hammering on a drift to make it move. This evening I had fires in the kitchen stove and the living room fireplace. It's quite possible to get some cold weather in April, but it's also possible, and maybe more likely, that these were my last wood fires until next fall.


Saturday, March 28, 2015

Again I drove to Winfield to check out a couple of auctions, and again neither one had anything to keep me there. Most of my day was devoted to preparing parts for my new wheels. Yesterday I put a front hub to soak overnight in Evapo-Rust, and today I rinsed it, dried it in the oven, soaked the inner bearing in 50/50 (automatic transmission fluid and acetone) and drove out the old bearing. Now the outer bearing is soaking in 50/50, and I'll remove it tomorrow. That will make all three hubs (two fronts and a rear) and all three rims ready to go, and I can sandblast all the parts and pack them for shipping to Ohio. That's easier said than done. Sandblasting is always slow work. I had planned to make a new window frame for the back porch today, but I'm out of 20d galvanized nails. I found some at the hardware store, but I didn't want to pay $5 a pound. I'll wait until Monday when the lumber yard is open, and get them at a better price.


Sunday, March 29, 2015

On a lazy sunday morning I jogged three miles, had breakfast and a long, warm shower and spent the morning playing online. In the afternoon I taped a front wheel hub for sand blasting, did a little rose pruning and weeding in front of the house, and installed the repaired wheel cylinders on my truck. Tomorrow I'll put on the wheel and see if I have any luck bleeding the brakes.


Monday, March 30, 2015

A busy Monday started with a trip to town. I took a Model T hub to the welding shop at the juco to have an old bearing race extracted. The early hubs don't have a notch that would let you knock the Timkens out from the other side with a drift, because the ball bearings originally used in those hubs could be reached without the notch provided in later hubs. In this case the welding teacher just welded a piece of scrap across the old bearing race and knocked it out with a hammer. My next stop was at the lumber yard for nails. The nails which cost $5 a pound at Ace Hardware are $1.95 a pound at Woods
Lumber. At home I taped that hub to prepare it for sandblasting, then went to work on the back porch
. I spent most of the day making the new west window frame. Fitting a new frame into the existing structure requires me to build it part way, install it, then nail on a couple more boards. I got the partial assembly done and the extra boards cut, then aged the new lumber with walnut stain. I'll let the stain dry overnight, and should have the frame in place tomorrow. I ended the day with another trip to town, this time in the Suburban. I took a couple of boards back to the lumber yard to trade them for better ones. Those two boards had so many big knots in them they were unusable. When I bought lumber last week I didn't stay and pick them out myself. Lesson learned. Next time I won't leave it to the delivery kid to pick out what he delivers.




Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Today I finished installing the new window frame, chipped the old mortar of some stones, and set them in water to soak so the new mortar will stick to them. It seems I spend way too much time looking for tools when I need them. Someday when my ship comes in and I'm rolling in dough, I'll hire somebody to follow me around and keep track of where I leave things.

Meanwhile, on the cat front, the new spring crop has arrived. I noticed that my black cat was looking unusually fat, then suddenly got thinner. Yesterday I heard mewing in the tool shed, and today I found them in a box in there. There are five. Out of last year's batch, three are still here. The attrition rate seems pretty high, and I suspect a lot of them fall prey to coyotes, owls, and other wild critters. Miss Kitty, my calico, lasted seven years, but I haven't seen her since October. Since I started keeping cats to control mice, I've had to go looking for a new cat only once. They've always produced enough offspring that I usually have at least two or three of them around.  

  
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