Monday, June 29, 2009

Practice Makes It Better

I went out behind the barn, checked my sights from the bench, and shot several targets to improve my score of "6" on my first attempt. I think this one scores "10," which is a pretty good improvement for me. You have until midnight Monday to submit your target to Sebastian. Click on the June e-Postal match on the left sidebar to read the rules and download your target. I hope Sebastian counts my propellor touch; it's a real "edger."

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Not My Player Piano

Here Comes Monday!


Back To The Old Grind!

Clowning For The Camera?

My Great Aunt Bessye Garrison (granddaughter of Wm Tweed, on the far left of the banner at the top of the page) married a photographer, Carl Hornung, and they took quite a few photos of their activities when they were a young couple. I visited another of her nephews several years ago and he showed me a box of negatives that had belonged to her. He was about to throw them out, so I latched onto them. I bought darkroom equipment and made prints of some of them, but darkrooms take time, and I haven't fooled with it for several years. Now, through the magic of computers, we can scan a negative, and a picture pops right up on the screen from ninety years ago. You don't even have to turn out the lights or watch your water temperature.
I have no idea if the fellows with the Burlington Bread Company truck were friends of Carl and Bessye; and I wish I knew why the guy on the running board has his pant legs pulled up for the photographer. The bridge across the Mississippi has been replaced by a new 'artsy' suspension bridge, and I have been across both the old and new bridges many times. The Model T truck is a good looking rig. Ford sold these as a bare chassis, and the customers installed their own body to suit their own needs. You will see a variety of homemade cabs and beds in car shows and museums. This truck has solid tires on the back end, so it is a safe assumption that its delivery routes were confined mostly to city streets in Burlington, Iowa.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Weekend Steam

From the pages of an old Engineers and Engines Magazine come some fascinating California machines. The first engine is Steam Traction Engine #1, made by Holt, and the one below is the second crawler made by Holt in 1904. Holt was building big traction engines for farm, forests, and industry, and began experimenting with tracks in order to reduce the size of his machines. Holt crawlers were used extensively in Europe during WWI. Holt and Best merged in the 1920's to form the Caterpillar company. Click Here, and Here to read articles about Benjamin Holt.


Friday, June 26, 2009

Crankin' It Up




Here is a little change of pace for our Friday selection. Minuet in G, by Beethoven is what we used to call 'Long Hair' music when I was a kid. I wonder if people still use that term. This record has been in the cabinet for many years, and this is the first time we have played it. The artist, Kathleen Parlow, is pictured below. Click Here to read about her.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Southern Illinois Wheat Harvest



Wet weather has delayed the wheat harvest in Southern Illinois this year, and has hurt the quality. The ground has finally dried out enough to allow the combines to work, and farmers are busily harvesting, and then planting second crop beans. Bottomland fields along the Little Wabash have not all been planted yet, due to flooding. The John Deere combine in this video is working across the road from our home.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

It's Always Something

We always have a project to work on. The old barn has had plenty of patching done over the years, and this summer it will get some more. The rocks holding it up have settled in over the last 100 plus years, and when the timbers get down to the ground the termites move in. We have been jacking up wood for several summers and patching in cross-ties to stop the meltdown. The current timber we are looking at is eaten and rotten for nearly all of its twenty feet. The siding boards here have also been hit hard by termites, so we will be buying a bunch of 1 x 12's from our favorite sawmill.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Dramamine?



Monday turned ito a very long day, so this is just a quick video of an engine we saw at the SIAM show. It is a Fairbanks-Morse, and I know that I would set jacks under the back corners of the truck if I had to watch this baby. I nearly get seasick just watching the video.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Summer Weather

We watched thunderstorm activity all weekend, and checked radar regularly to see if anything was coming our way. We were lucky, and didn't get hit by any bad ones. This storm marched by north and west of us, and had a tornado on the ground near Iuka, IL.

A storm that followed the first one had some pretty formations. I see a face in this one.... we do enjoy watching the clouds in flat country.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Not My Victrola



YouTuber KSPM now has a channel on DailyMotion, and is posting his music collection over there. This selection is a great example of Harlem Jazz; Charlie Johnson's band playing "Charleston Is The Best Dance After All."

Here Comes Monday!



Back To The Old Grind!

1964 Comet; 540,000 Miles



This video is downright inspirational! You have to wonder if this lady in video intended to drive her car this long when she bought it, or if she just worked into the mode of driving it forever. She knows how to take care of a car, even watching it on the grease rack to make sure it is lubed properly. I was only mildly surprised to see that she has a concealed carry permit and packs a revolver. I would hazard a guess that she keeps it oiled and stoked properly so it can go into action without fail if it is ever needed. You have to admire her for her Moxie!

UPDATE!

Growing Bolder has posted two more videos of Rachel and Chariot. The Comet now has 577,000 miles, and Rachel is still determined to keep driving it.





Saturday, June 20, 2009

Weekend Steam



Andy Glines was running his Huber at Evansville last week. You have seen him here before, pulling the sawmill at this show, and threshing at Boonville. The weather last Saturday was beautiful, and we had a great time at the SIAM show. In the weeks ahead we will be sharing photos and videos of tractors, cars, and gas engines.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Crankin' It Up



Sascha Jacobsen (1895-1972) graduated from Juilliard in 1915 (According to Wikipedia, which has a very brief article about this violinist.) He later taught at there, and was the concertmaster for the Los Angeles Philharmonic in the 1950's. Dardanella was a very popular song during the early 1920's, and was recorded by many artists.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

That's "A" Nice Ride!

It is pretty obvious to readers of this blog that I like old cars. I appreciate show pieces, but I really am drawn to cars that are driven. This Model A stood out as a car that the owner loves, but is not afraid to drive.

The car suddenly appears to have an interesting personality when viewed from the passenger side. .50 caliber ammo can tool box, Oil Filter!, Headers?

While I admired and took photos the owner came over. He was a very nice gentleman, a career army veteran who has seen the elephant more than once. He bought this car for $25.00 in 1951 and has driven it ever since. He is from Indiana, and used to drive it back and forth from his home to Albuquerque when he was stationed there. The engine is a rebuilt A power plant with pressurized oil system, insert bearings instead of the original babbit bearings, twelve volt alternator, headers, and a Chevy downdraft carburetor. It will go 70, but he runs 55 to 60, which is pretty darn good. I didn't ask, but I bet he prefers .45 autos to 9mm's, and M 14's to black rifles.


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

No Joking!

You have to respect the wringers on old washing machines. This Maytag has a red release bar; if memory serves me correctly, Speed Queen's release bars were white like the rest of the washer. These wringers have no mercy if they catch your hand. They will roll right up to your shoulder, and then spin your skin off down to the bone. If you use one of these old machines to wash your greasers, throw rugs, etc., be sure to check the wringer release bars before you run your clothes through them.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

May e-Postal Results Are Up!

Manfred has posted the scores for the May match. Click Here to go see the results. Thank You Manfred!

Dodge Power Wagon On The Market!

Dodge Power Wagons have been known to make grown men tremble, drool, and get weak in the knees.

Let's see how this gentleman reacts when he looks at the price tag......
No weak knees here; that was a quick getaway. Must not be a real 4-wheel fanatic.

Whoa! Too rich for my blood too!


It is mostly all there. Don't delay if you need one of these.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Not My Player Piano



SilentBacchus has begun posting player piano pieces on his YouTube channel! Here is 'After You've Gone,' to brighten up the beginning of your week.

Look Sharp ! Monday's Coming!


Back To The Old Grind!

Thoughts For Flag Day



If you don't know all the verses of our National Anthem, or if you haven't heard them in a while, be sure to watch all of the first video before you play the second.


Congressman Randy Forbes, R-VA

A big Thank You to Argghhh!!! for posting the first video, and to Curmudgeonly and Skeptical for posting the second one, on their excellent and informative blogs.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Weekend Steam



The Southern Indiana Antique Machinery Club is having their annual show this weekend. Last year we took lots of photos and videos, but never made it to the antique tractors. We are planning to get away early Saturday morning, and hope to get lots of material to share with you on the blog. Here is a replay of Andy Gline's Huber engine running the sawmill last year. Stay tuned!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Crankin' It Up



This Friday we are going to listen to the flip side of the record we played one week ago. The Original Dixieland Jazz Band performs Bluin' The Blues, a Fox Trot, on Victor disc number 18483-A.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Basic Wedge Use In Bucking




This chainsaw student is trying out bucking with a wedge. He was new to saws, and really fell hard for horsepower and throwing chips. Bucking was done beginning on the compression side of the log until the cut began to close, then a wedge was put in to keep the cut open. Cutting continued out the tensioned side of the log. Notice how he kept his body out of line from the bar of the saw; that is a good habit to cultivate.

Just how enthusiastic was this guy? Here he is cutting a disc off the tree he dropped during the class at the Dixon Springs Ag Center. As I left the Ag Center for home, he was loading this into the trunk of his car for a souvenir.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Oh Joy

Ranking right in there with plumbing repairs are broken washing machines. Our Kenmore washer began making an unpleasant whirring/clicking noise on Monday and would no longer spin. It would agitate, so I had hopes that it was not the transmission. We were able to look up a trouble shooting guide on the internet, and disassembled the machine to reach a diagnosis.

The coupler between the motor and transmission had failed, which is not too bad after nearly fifteen years of washing. Mrs. TBS ordered a new replacement part, and she should be able to use her machine again by the weekend. If not for the internet we would have had to call a repairman, and spent big bucks. If I can successfully put it back together again, we will get off for only $22.92. Not Bad.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Untimely Leaf Drop

Falling leaves in June are cause for alarm if the leaves are from a beloved shade tree. After giving this hackberry a good lookover, I focused in on the leaves, twigs and petioles. A few leaves showed fungal spots, and growths caused by mites, but those leaves were hanging on tight.

The yellowed leaves had distorted petioles, and were the older of the leaves. The newer ones showed no problems.

Most of the affected leaves were already on the ground.


Right across the road is a field that has been sprayed for no-till planting. These fields usually have a herbicide cocktail that is a combination of burn down and pre-emergent chemicals. The wet weather this year has delayed farming, and I haven't been seeing the usual calls about herbicide drift. Hackberry is a tree with few disese or insect problems, and spraying would have normally been done before the leaves emerged on hackberry. This tree will be OK. Most of the leaves emerged after the chemical exposure, and they are looking fine.



Monday, June 8, 2009

Better Try This One Again

The goal in this month's contest is to hit the little aircraft, and miss the big one. You get bonus points if you hit five, ten, or fifteen, and you lose points for hitting the wrong plane. I hope I can do better before I have to send off a target for scoring. It is obvious that you all have nothing to fear from me, so make some time this week to shoot a target. Click on the link for June under 'Get Out And Shoot!'

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Here Comes Monday!


Back To The Old Grind!

Not My Victrola



Let's finish this weekend with a great Rudy Vallee song recorded eighty years ago this month, and just as good for dancing a nice Fox-Trot with your baby as it was then. It will put you in a good mood for Monday morning.

Not My Victrola







Kennedy always blows me away when I listen to him. I found some videos this morning of him playing the Bach violin concertos, and they are so good that I have to share them with you. These videos are all three movements of the Bach Violin Concerto #1. Put them on to play and open another tab to do your surfing today.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

A Post From Ernie Pyle; 65 Years Ago

I took a walk along the historic coast of Normandy in the country of France. It was a lovely day for strolling along the seashore. Men were sleeping on the sand, some of them sleeping forever. Men were floating in the water, but they didn't know they were in the water, for they were dead.

The water was full of squishy little jellyfish about the size of a man's hand. Millions of them. In the center of each of them was green design exactly like a four-leafed clover. The good-luck emblem. Sure. Hell, yes.

I walked for a mile and a half along the water's edge of our many-miled beach. I walked slowly, for the detail on the beach was infinite.

The wreckage was vast and startling. The awful waste and destruction of war, even aside from the loss of human life, has always been one of its outstanding features to those who are in it. Anything and everything is expendable. And we did expend on our beachhead in Normandy during those first few hours.

For a mile out from the beach there were scores of tanks and trucks and boats that were not visible, for they were at the bottom of the water-swamped by overloading, or hit by shells, or sunk by mines. Most of their crews were lost.

There were trucks tipped half over and swamped, partly sunken barges, and the angled-up corners of jeeps, and small landing craft half submerged. And at low tide you could still see those vicious six-pronged iron snares that helped snag and wreck them.

On the beach itself, high and dry, were all kinds of wrecked vehicles. There were tanks that had only just made the beach before being knocked out. There were jeeps that had burned to a dull gray. There were big derricks on caterpillar treads that didn't quite make it. There were half-tracks carrying office equipment that had been made into a shambles by single shell hit, their interiors still holding the useless equipage of smashed typewriters, telephones, office files.

There were LCTs turned completely upside down, and lying on their backs, and how they got that way I don't know. There were boats stacked on top of each other, their sides caved in, their suspension doors knocked off.

In this shore-line museum of carnage there were abandoned rolls of barbed wire and smashed bulldozers and big stacks of thrown-away life belts and piles of shells still waiting to be moved. In the water floated empty life rafts and soldiers' packs and ration boxes, and myserious oranges. On the beach lay snarled rolls of telephone wire and big rolls of steel matting and stacks of broken, rusting rifles.

On the beach lay, expended, sufficient men and mechanism for a small war. They were gone forever now. And yet we could afford it.

We could afford it because we were on, we had our toe hold, and behind us there were such enormous replacements for this wreckage on the beach that you could hardly conceive of the sum total. Men and equipment were flowing from England in such a gigantic stream that it made the waste on the beachhead seem like nothing it all, really nothing at all.

But there was another and more human litter. It extended in a thin little line, just like a high-water mark, for miles along the beach. This was the strewn personal gear, gear that would never be needed again by those who fought and died to give us our entrance into Europe.

There in a jumbled row for mile on mile were soldiers' packs. There were socks and shoe polish, sewing kits, diaries, Bibles, hand grenades. There were the latest letters from home, with the address on each one neatly razored out-one of the security precautions enforced before the boys embarked.

There were toothbrushes and razors, and snapshots of families back home staring up at you from the sand. There were pocketbooks, metal mirrors, extra trousers, and bloody, abandoned shoes. There were broken-handled shovels, and portable radios smashed almost beyond recognition, and mine detectors twisted and ruined.

There were torn pistol belts and canvas water buckets, first-aid kits, and jumbled heaps of life belts. I picked up a pocket Bible with a soldier's name in it, and put it in my jacket. I carried it half a mile or so and then put it back down on the beach. I don't know why I picked it up, or why I put it down again.

Soldiers carry strange things ashore with them. In every invasion there is at least one soldier hitting the beach at H-hour with a banjo slung over his shoulder. The most ironic piece of equipment marking our beach-this beach first of despair, then of victory-was a tennis racket that some soldier had brought along. It lay lonesomely on the sand, clamped in its press, not a string broken.

Two of the most dominant items in the beach refuse were cigarettes and writing paper. Each soldier was issued a carton of cigarettes just before he started. That day those cartons by the thousand, water-soaked and spilled out, marked the line of our first savage blow.

Writing paper and air-mail envelopes came second. The boys had intended to do a lot of writing in France. The letters-now forever incapable of being written-that might have filled those blank abandoned pages!

Always there are dogs in every invasion. There was a dog still on the beach, still pitifully looking for his masters. He stayed at the water's edge, near a boat that lay twisted and half sunk at the waterline. He barked appealingly to every soldier who approached, trotted eagerly along with him for a few feet, and then, sensing himself unwanted in all the haste, he would run back to wait in vain for his own people at his own empty boat.

Over and around this long thin line of personal anguish, fresh men were rushing vast supplies to keep our armies pushing on into France. Other squads of men picked amidst the wreckage to salvage ammunition and equipment that was still usable.

Men worked and slept on the beach for days before the last D-day victim was taken away for burial.

I stepped over the form of one youngster whom I thought dead, But when I looked down I saw he was only sleeping. He was very young, and very tired. He lay on one elbow, his hand suspended in the air about six inches from the ground. And in the palm of his hand he held a large, smooth rock.

I stood and looked at him a long time. He seemed in his sleep to hold that rock lovingly, as though it were his last link with a vanishing world. I have no idea at all why he went to sleep with the rock in his hand, or what kept him from dropping it once he was asleep. It was just one of those little things without explanation that a person remembers for a long time.

The strong, swirling tides of the Normandy coast line shifted the contours of the sandy beach as they moved in and out. They carried soldiers' bodies out to sea, and later they returned them. They covered the corpses of heroes with sand, and then in their whims they uncovered them.
As I plowed out over the wet sand, I walked around what seemed to be a couple of pieces of driftwood sticking out of the sand. But they weren't driftwood. They were a soldier's two feet. He was completely covered except for his feet; the toes of his GI shoes pointed toward the land he had come so far to see, and which he saw so briefly.

From "Brave Men" by Ernie Pyle

Weekend Steam

The November-December 1964 Iron-Men Album Magazine has a rare peek at a frightening accident. The same issue has a story about a lady who was entangled by a spinning shaft, a boy who had his toe run over by a traction engine, and a man killed in a tree cutting accident. Good-Old-Days, indeed.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Crankin' It Up



This week we have a real 'Oldie But Goodie;' the Sensation Rag by the Original Dixieland Jazz Band. Last week we were in the Bronx, and now we are in N'Awlins. We are getting around!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Forest Products Re-Utilization

KurtP, over at A Trainwreck In Maxwell acquired a stack of pallets a while back, and has been busy planing, planning, and building. Click over to his excellent blog for a look at what can be made of scraps that others throw away. Pretty nice, Kurt. Mrs. TBS has been wishing for cabinets in the utility room; maybe she will let me buy a planer.

1910? Wow!

I took a shot of these old motorcycles last year, and focused in on the four cylinder engine in the Pearce motorcycle. I totally missed the final drive on this beauty.

Pretty neat for a machine built nearly a century ago, isn't it? (Click on photo to enlarge.)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Steam And Gas Engine Show Season Is Upon Us!

video

The Southern Indiana Antique Machinery show is coming up on the weekend of June 12, and it is a good thing, because I am running low on unused videos of old machinery. Click on the Farm Collector Show Directory (under Stoke Up in the left sidebar) to find shows in your neighborhood. Steam and gas engine shows are good family entertainment, and great places to make new friends, and see 'new' things. The tamper/compactor in this brief video is one of the machines you can see at Old Threshers, in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Hold That Saw!

video

Controlling your saw when you crank it up is an easy habit to acquire, and it will serve you well, protecting you from nasty cuts. Lock the grip between your knees, or hold it on the ground when you are ready to start your saw.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Chirp, Chirp

If you drive a modern car you have a serpentine belt up front that is running accessories like the water pump, alternator, air conditioning, and power steering. I really like the convenience of the modern belt because I remember replacing and adjusting multiple V-belts not-so-many years ago. The only problem I have with the new belts are the annoying chirps that come from the idler pulleys. They always seem to have grease in the bearing when I check them, but squeaky bearings make me nervous, so I have to check if they chirp and I haven't greased them recently.

Removing and servicing the idlers is not too difficult. Our Ford has an idler arm that can be moved with a 3/8 ratchet to remove the belt; the Chevy we had previously required a big set of Channellocks to move the arm back. One bolt holds each bearing/pulley assembly in place. The Ford's pulleys are both held by right-hand threaded bolts; the Chevy had one bolt that was left-handed. Take the pulleys off, tease the seal off the back side with a suitable tool, (pocket knife works for me) and work some fresh grease into the bearing with your fingers, or suitable applicator. Press the seals back into place, and reassemble what you have taken apart. Your idlers should be silent when you crank up again. If you are lucky they will be quiet for several months.