Under the Spreading Chestnut Tree…..

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Forge

Bud picked up the hobby of Smithing about the time he retired. Being a frugal sort, he has cobbled his forge out of scraps and junk.  The only part he bought was an old blower he picked up for fifty dollars at a flea market.  Previous to that acquisition, he used my old hairdryer. He talked his brother-in-law out of a cart from his trash heap.  One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.  The wheels were scavenged from a broken fertilizer spreader, the fire pan from a discarded barbecue pit. He uses old barbecue tongs to move coal around.  The long-handled dipper started life as a bean can and is wrapped with soft steel wire.  With a couple of holes in the bottom, he can either sprinkle or pour water.  Another brother-in-law gave him a broken vise which he repaired, using junk, and mounted on the cart.  He has made many useful and decorative items, including kitchen knives and an umbrella stand to hang six baskets of flowers.  He’s also made many punches and chisels.

 

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Left: Blade is made of high carbon steel.  He was making this one for himself, but I claimed it.

Right: Blade is made of an old file.  This is the first one he made and has been used heavily.

Both are wickedly sharp.  These can not go in dishwasher.  They are my favorite knives.  I always reach for them first.

Before I throw anything out, I have to leave it for Bud’s inspection.  He has snagged an electric kettle , an old electric iron, and and old rotisserie.  He used the rotisserie motor and gears to build a device to rotate items at 6 rpms a minute to keep epoxy from pooling and dripping as it dries.  It comes in handy for making flies.

 

 

Deal of a Lifetime

You’ve seen my posts about my one-hundred twenty-two pound Mastiff mix, Croc.   Just so you know, Croc does have a few faults, but he is a good eater.  I tried mixing kibble with a can of dog food to encourage Buzzy, my little dog to eat.  It’s not unusual for Buzzy to go a couple of days and not touch food.  When he finally gets hungry, he will run by and grab two or three kibbles.  The mix only enticed Buzzy for a day or two, though it did enable Croc to gain ten pounds in a couple of weeks.

All that eating pays off like a slot machine.  Croc regularly cranks out four major poops a day.  Bud does all our accounts.  Based on his calculations, Croc’s poops cost about a dollar each.  That’s one fancy dog.  Hopefully, it was a good economic move to cut him back to just kibble.

All that food creates a malodorous symphony.  Needless to say, Croc is not constrained by modesty and sounds like the tuba section in a brass band. The concert doesn’t seem to disturb him, but he has been known to get up and move when the odor is powerful enough to make his eyes water.  He appears to hold a grudge toward us if the aroma moves him along.  It’s not unusual for him to glare at us accusingly if he’s especially offended.