JULY 2009



Saturday, August 1, 2009

After doing laundry I did a little work on the TT project, wiring the differential case nuts and making a torque tube gasket. I spent most of the day getting started on some house cleaning chores. This evening I drove down to Ponca City for a little shopping, some good comida Mexicana at Los Compadres, and a movie.


Sunday, August 2, 2009

I spent most of the day on a shopping trip. I was going to buy a front spring perch from a guy out west, but he wrecked it getting it out of the axle. So today I drove over to Model T Haven at Iola and bought an axle with both perches in it. It was a beautiful day for a drive through the Flint Hills.


Monday, August 3, 2009

I discovered the other day that I could order a new mower belt from a local auto parts store. So this afternoon I installed the new belt and tried it out. It worked just fine, and I spent the rest of the afternoon mowing. There's enough mowing left to do to keep me busy for a couple of days, then I can install new spring and perch bushings and get the touring car put back together.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Mayor Mike stopped by yesterday and asked me for a picture of the house to represent Parkerfield on a calendar to be published by the Kansas League of Municipalities. So this afternoon I took a day off from mowing to dig through a box of photos to find one. This happens to be the oldest house in Parkerfield.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Today it was back to mowing. The forecast for triple digit temperatures was about fifteen degrees wrong, with a high in the eighties. No complaints about that here. It was a beautiful mowing day, and I got quite a bit done. There's more to do, so I expect I'll be back at it again tomorrow.


Thursday, August 6, 2009

It was a cool day, only about 80º. I was able to stop at the library and leave Zeke in the car and not worry about baking him. The purpose of the library visit was to find the local newspapers for Monday, April 16, 1923, the date of my touring car, and Friday, August 31, 1923, the date of my TT. I copied the front page of both papers, and one inside page of each to show ads with products and prices. I plan to make a display for each vehicle giving the history/information on it and the newspaper pages showing what was happening when it was made.


Friday, August 7, 2009

This was going to be the day to finish installing new front bushings in the touring car and start putting it back together. But I spent the day instead rebuilding the tool I made for removing perches from front axles. It worked on the first two, but broke on the third one. The push bolt threads stripped out. The redesigned version uses a grade 8 push bolt and nut instead of grade 5, and the bolt is 5/8-18 instead of 5/8-11. The push bolt also goes through a threaded hole 1" long, instead of 5/8". I'll find out tomorrow whether it works.


Saturday, August 8, 2009

No, it didn't. I suspect that welding the nut in place softened the steel, because the push bolt stripped out the threads. So I spent today alternating between two jobs. I started making a new push plate. As the work cooled after each bit of cutting or welding, I mowed. It was a full day of part-making and mowing. I did take time for a little bit of internet research on how to temper steel. I'll see if I can correct the stripped thread problem.


Sunday, August 9, 2009

It was another day of perch removal with breaks for mowing. I got both the bad perches out of the axle I want to use, but I still have to get the good replacement perch out of its axle. I ended the day turning the axle red, letting it cool, and squirting on some Kroil. I'll let it soak in until tomorrow, then I'll see if the perch presses out.


Monday, August 10, 2009

Still stuck. I squirted on more Kroil and left it to soak in. Tomorrow I'll concoct some 50-50 acetone/ATF, the best penetrant, and see if that helps.


Friday, August 14, 2009

Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday afternoons were all the same: trying to get that last perch out of its axle. This is the weekend of the big antique farm equipment show in Winfield. One of the jobs for which I signed up was driving the people mover, so that's what I did for a couple of hours this afternoon. When I got home, I went back to perch removal and finally got it out. Now it's soaking in rust remover. When it's derusted, I'll use the thread file and a die to fix up Ithe threads. After that, all I need to do is replace the old bushing with a new one and paint the perch. Then it will be time to reassemble everything. About time. A job that should have taken a day or two has dragged on for over a month now.


Sunday, August 16, 2009

And it continues to drag on! I can't find my thread file. Ggrrrr. I took a break from all that for the tractor show. This is the first time I've gone all three days. In addition to driving the people mover on Friday, I helped with registration for couple of hours yesterday morning. I spent the rest of the day looking at the old stuff and taking pictures. I took very few still pictures this year, shooting mostly video. When I finish editing and get it all together, I'll post a link here so you can take a look. That will probably take a few days. But tomorrow I'm going to see if I can find that thread file.


Monday, August 17, 2009

A rainy day, with a heavy downpour in the morning. In a few days when the ground dries a little it will be time for another weed pulling session. This afternoon I found my thread file, so tomorrow I'll go to work on that perch.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

My first day of vacation was another rainy one, a good day for indoor work. I spent most of the day on that last perch, repairing the threads, removing the worn bushing, installing the new bushing, and painting. I got the new bushings into the front spring, and tomorrow I'll start putting the front axle back together. The car should be ready to drive soon.


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The day began as another wet one, and I spent the morning putting the front axle back on the touring car. I had it all back together and the wheels on by about 1:30 and the sun was out by 2:00. Zeke got in and we took the car for a test drive. Everything seemed to function properly. I drove down to the East Chestnut bridge to see what's going on there. The bridge was closed for road repairs for "about a week" two weeks ago. It looks like the grading is done and waiting for paving. Maybe it will be open before another week goes by. When I got home my neighbor Dave, who has a runabout, dropped in and we discussed T's for a while. After he left I adjusted the horn. It had quit working, but a turn of the adjusting screw got it honking normally. It was such a nice day that we went for another drive. On the way home I stopped at the cemetery, where I met a woman who told of riding in her dad's Model T coupe when she was a little girl. One of the things that's fun about these cars is visiting with folks who have happy childhood memories of them. Some of the old timers have good stories to tell.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

With rain continuing for one more wet morning before a predicted dry spell, I spent the morning putting together videos of last weekend's tractor show. The hardest part, or at least the most time-consuming, is uploading to youtube. I wound up with three parts, each almost ten minutes long, and each takes several hours to upload. If I ever get the job done, I'll post a link to it here. By the time I finished my video efforts, the rain was over and the sun was out. Zeke and I went to town in the Ford to buy some lumber and do some grocery shopping. The lumber was delivered soon after I got home, and I spent the rest of the afternoon working on a scaffold to use when I work on the roof.


Friday, August 21, 2009

I shot one of the neighbor dogs again this morning. A big German shepherd down the road likes to come out and bark at my heels when I go by, and try to pick a fight with Zeke. Last year I ran by with a starter's pistol, and when he came out to do his thing I gave him a dose of BANG! BANG! BANG! That cured him until recently, but he's been reverting to his old habits. So this morning I gave him a couple of booster shots. We'll see how long the cure lasts this time. I got in quite a bit of T time today, driving up to the court house to pay the registration on the Suburban, buying a couple of jars of kimchi, driving back to Arkansas City for grocery shopping and making an insurance payment, and driving down to Chilocco to gas up the T. At home I put together the third and final pair of uprights for my house repair scaffold. Assembling the whole scaffold and putting it up looks like it will be a pretty big job.


Saturday, August 22, 2009

I spent most of the morning and part of the afternoon at an auction. This one was advertised as including Model A and Model T parts. There were several Model A heads and a few other parts, but the only T items I saw were one front fender bracket and a headlight bucket with holes rusted through it. I did come away with a 1/4 hp electric motor for $1 and a battery charger for $1, so it wasn't a wasted trip. When I got home I spent way too much time trying to upload tractor show videos to youtube. Eventually I got it done, so here's the link. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkViyc5WvgQ


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Today I painted trees. I took a rattle can down in the woods and sprayed white marks on dead trees and branches. In the fall when the leaves are off the trees, those I marked today will be the ones I'll cut up for firewood. I also started looking for small trees to transplant in the fall. One of the big shade trees behind the house is about finished, so I'll need to plant a replacement. I'd also like to have a tree between the house and the east drive to provide some summer shade for the area around the back yard swing. I'm looking for a couple of elms small enough to survive transplanting.


Monday, August 24, 2009

I was Thomas Edison today. I found out what doesn't work. I spent most of the day on the house repair scaffold. I planned to put it together on the ground, then turn it upright.

The problem was that when I tried to lift the thing into position it fell apart. So I finished the day going to town to buy more lumber, then doing some mowing while I waited for it to be delivered.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

It took just about all day, but I got the scaffold up. I did a lot of climbing up ladders, nailing on boards, climbing down, cutting more boards, climbing up, and nailing them on. I finally finished the thing a little before five.


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

One of the chores I did today was reserving some trees for transplanting. There are a couple of places I want to add some shade trees, so I went down the lane to the woods and found some suitable elms. I chose American elm because it's a good shade tree and is faster growing than some other trees. I cut up a plastic bag in strips, and tied a strip to each tree so I can find them in the late fall when all the leaves are off the trees. I've read that the best time to transplant trees is in the fall when they're dormant, so that's when I'll do it.

I didn't start removing old roofing today because the latest forecast calls for a pretty good chance of rain early in the morning. I'll get started after that. I did go to town and buy lumber so it will be here when I need it. With any luck I'll start replacing some of the deteriorated eaves tomorrow.


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Oh boy! Forget about replacing any eaves today. The morning was wet, so I did some maintenance on the touring car while I waited for things to dry out a bit. At noon I finally got started removing old roofing.

What I found was four layers of asphalt shingles and tar on top of the original wood shingles. Prying off the asphalt roofing and bagging up the pieces was pretty slow going. All the layers of asphalt roofing have to come off before I can get the old wood shingles off. Once the wood shingles are off I can start replacing eaves and other rotten boards.






Along with asphalt shingles, I found
several metal strips that had to come out. One of them was an interesting archaeological find. The rusty condition of the plate suggests that it was a at least a few years old when it became part of the roof. Based on cars in the old pictures, I would guess that this part of the house was built around 1930.


Friday, August 28, 2009

Everything takes longer than you think it will. I spent the whole day removing old shingles. I started about seven, was at it until noon, went to town shopping for about an hour, and came back and removed shingles until five.

Today's find was this front page newspaper mat dated Monday, January 18, 1932. That tells us the year when the two north rooms were added upstairs. The mats were tacked on as insulation before the shingles were nailed on. Removing all the little nails makes getting those wood shingles off pretty slow going.


Saturday, August 29, 2009

I got home from doing laundry about ten, spent an hour taking off old shingles, went to the lumber yard and picked up a load of new roofing, then came back and spent the rest of the day back on the roof. I got all but two rows of shingles off, so I'm almost ready to start taking off boards and putting in new eaves.


Sunday, August 30, 2009

It seems I've opened quite a can of worms. Every time I take something off, it reveals something else rotten that I need to take off. Today I removed the last two rows of shingles on the west side of the house and started taking off rotten boards. Some are bad because water has leaked in on them, and others have termite damage. I'm going to have to put up a scaffold for the south half of the west side so I can rebuild everything that needs it. This project gets bigger the more of it I do, but I can't put it off any more. Last winter and spring rain leaked in and collapsed part of the ceiling in the northwest upstairs room. There was even some water dripping from the kitchen ceiling downstairs. I stopped that with a temporary patch, but the place where the water leaked in is pretty bad, and I'm going to have to replace several boards. Fortunately most of the basic structure is sound enough that I won't need to do any major rebuilding, but what I do have to do is going to take some time. This may be like the front porch project a few years ago, when I spent about six months on the job and had to cover everything with tarps and plastic sheeting to keep the weather out.



Monday, August 31, 2009


This was clean up day. When I got home from work I took a broom up on the roof and swept up all the debris from the past few days. I think tomorrow's project will be planning how to cover the work when wet weather comes. Now that I've uncovered so much that needs to be repaired or rebuilt, it's obvious that this is likely to be a long project. Like the front porch rebuilding that turned out to include much of the front wall above the porch, I'll need to figure out a way to use tarps and/or plastic sheeting to keep the weather out until the job is done.








JULY 2009