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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Treat for the lovely wife

Today my wife got a special treat. We went to the hardware store. Most women don't get excited about hardware, but that's one of the reasons I didn't marry any of them.

We were on a mission to find some hardware for the boat. Why didn't we go to a marine supply store? Two major reasons. The big reason is that anything you get just about anywhere else will most likely cost less. The second reason is that the closest marine supply is over 100 miles away.

To complicate matters, we were inventing. Hardware stores are great places to invent things. We love looking for items to be used in ways the manufacturer never intended. Our problem was that occasionally the swing keel on the sailboat would get stuck in the up position. The only sure way to get it down was to get in the water and give a gentle tug. There had to be a better way.

At the hardware store my wife discovered some nice brass plumbing fittings that worked out just fine. I drilled a hole in the top of the channel that the keel swings into. A threaded fitting was screwed and glued into the hole. A nice gasketed brass cap screws on top. Now when the keel gets stuck, it's just a matter of unscrewing the cap and running a rod down the hole -and yes, I did make sure it was all above the water line.

Of course, while we were at the hardware store, my wife just had to look around at everything else in the store. I got away fairly cheaply. The only additonal thing she purchased was a new doorknob for our entrance door.

Now if my wife is really good, I'll take her to the building supply store. Those are down right dangerous to the budget. Had we gone there, I might have found myself replacing the whole front door.

Still, it beats the heck out of those poor guys who get dragged to the mall. You've seen those sorry looking men, holding their woman's packages and purse as the little lady tries on yet another dress. I'd rather hang out at the hardware store any day.



  1. Good fix for a common problem.
    Is it the line which causes the problem ?
    Usually that was it on my 20 Oday.

  2. Usually. Once I picked up a lot of weeds and that did it.



  4. A real hardware store with local people running it. People who can tell you the proper way to solder a valve on, and that sort of thing.

  5. You ever get near the city of Coco down here. Ya gotta go to Travis Hardware. It's a wet dream of old fashioned type hardware stores. They got everthin under the sun, probly got parts ta fix the sun itself lol.

    One time I stuck the swing keel on the Oday, we just run it up along side the shore. Then took a halyard and walked up the beach and pulled the boat over on its side. Tied it to a tree, then I waded in and unstuck the keel.You should have seen the look on the faces of the locals. They couldn't believe that thing floated on its side.
    Ah the good old days...

  6. Travis Hardware. Got it. I love my old Oday. Hopefully I won't have to tip it on its side the next time the keel gets stuck. With good winds, we've sailed it in shallow water with the keel up. Love being able to pull right up to shore. It's a gunkholer's dream.

  7. you got real hardware stores??????

    last good one died to being screwed in by taxes and other bullshit...

    now it is lowgarbage or homejunko unless can travel thirty miles away to a SURVIVING INDEPENDENT!!!!!

    am envious...


  8. You're a lucky (actually fortunate, luck's got nothing to do with it) man. My wife and I can go hardware shopping together and still be in love afterwards too. We actually do a lot of our project shopping at the dump.
    Your right about the malls. Terrible, soul sucking places. Out of a 100 stores, 65 are overpriced women's clothing, 30 are overpriced women's shoes and 5 sell cell phones and video games.