Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Ever growing project list

Seasons are changing. My project list doesn’t seem to get any smaller.

My projects break down into three areas of concern right now. The house, the vehicles, and the boat.

House projects are mostly centered around cold weather preparations. I’ve gotten lucky, as it has been a fairly mild fall. I just finished resealing some joints on my kitchen woodstove. It’s one of those things you keep an eye on when you have an old stove. I noticed they had to be redone when I changed out the kitchen stovepipe. I bought enough stovepipe to replace the basement stove’s, but haven’t gotten around to it yet. It’s been mild enough that I haven’t felt the need to use that stove yet. Chimney could use a good brushing too.

It’s time to change the angle of my solar panels for the winter sun. There are some pretty fancy and expensive systems that do that automatically. My cheapo DIY system requires that I climb a 10 ft step latter with a couple wrenches every 4 months or so. At about the same time I do that, I also check the water levels in the battery bank and top them off with distilled water.

I’ve other little house projects that I’ve promised my wife I’d finish. She’s been patient, but even she has limits. The lady wants a new custom bed frame. It’s reached the point where she’d started to do the measurements for me to cut the lumber. When she starts to do stuff like that, it’s time to move the project up the priority list.

My vehicle projects are in slow motion. I’m still waiting for the DOT to straighten out the small paperwork glitch that’s held up registering the camper conversion. While that’s been going on, I’ve slowly gathered most of the parts I’ll need to convert it to run on waste vegetable oil.

Just to keep me out of trouble, the header pipe on my pickup rusted through. It’s in a tight place with little room to cut rusty bolts. My mechanic could do it in short order using a lift and a cutting torch. However, I’m pretty sure he took the week off to go fishing in Florida.

I really want to use the camper conversion to haul the sailboat down to Florida come January. The paperwork hold up bugs me no end. Worse come to worse, I can put new tires on the old truck and make one more long distance trip with it. If the paperwork comes though on the camper, the truck tires can wait until I come back in the spring.

Then there are the boat projects. In some ways, I’m ahead. The bottom paint is all done, thanks to a break in the weather. There’s nothing the boat absolutely needs to be sea worthy. It’s the little extras I’m working on now. The new cabin hatch with solar panel mount is not completed. A new fuel locker panel could use more varnish.

I want to replace all the wires that go from the outboard to the battery. The insulation is starting to crack. Wrapping the bad sections in electrical tape was an acceptable field repair, but not really a long term solution. All the wire will be replaced with heavy enough cable to run a electric trolling motor. The outboard plug is getting replaced with a heavy duty trolling motor plug. The idea is that I can charge the battery from the gas outboard, or use the same wire system to run an electric trolling motor. How’s that for a redneck hybrid system?
With all these things to keep me busy, it’s a wonder I ever found time to go to a job.



  1. My backyard is plenty big enuff to park and work on ur boat. More than welcome to use it. Leave your truck here too if ya want.

  2. Spud: that's on heck of an offer. Might take you up on it.

  3. You sure have a lot to do, but the things you are doing are "happy" things. It really isn't work when you are doing things that will keep you safe, happy, and comfortable in the future.

  4. Dizzy, you are right. At least I'm working for myself.

  5. The "Job(s)" keep me from doing much of what I'd like to do. That and lack of funds. Come on spring piggy perch season!