Coping: Practical Prepping Notes

But first, just to close our the Sasquatch discussion (for now), I did briefly entertain the idea of trying to grab video of one.  The most common place for them to be seen is after a wildlife kill (they seem to like deer) and then relieving themselves in a nearby river or creek.  Tell me a video of a sasquatch doing a butt douche wouldn’t make us fabulously rich, yeah?

Since we are a good ways (2-3 miles) from a likely spot for that to happen (and I don’t want to be labeled a nut for asking permissions), we will let this project slide into obscurity. Just bar talk for now.

Remember, out in Olde Man Labs we do have every kind of sound generating tool (and many of Gary Garritan’s finest (including Garritan World Instruments) at our command, The idea of a stack of Bose speakers on top of a high hill with drivers pushing 130 db SPL’s out in six directions…that was the concept. Entertaining until you do the logistics like the 1/3 mile of extension cord.  We run out about 400 feet.

Figure is a Sasquatch was real (and happened to be in the area for a venison late night), they’d find it impossible to resist looking into a combo of digeridoo blasts spliced with lifted (purported) Sasquatch calls from the wilds of YouTube.  Kind of like a transdimentional being jazz club deal.

Another day, another trans, perhaps.


Still, this did get me all fired on a parallel area of interest, a fascination with Mobius strips. One-sided things.

Armed with a hundred foot role of 1-inch wide 5-mil copper strip, in just a matter of minutes I’d soldered up three interlaced single-dimension surfaces.  The question being “Does anything happen around grouped topological anomalies?

So far, not even a curious Mason has been attracted to it, yet.  Lacking a goat apron, I’m set to offer use of the leather welding apron for their inspection of my….er….notion.

Likely not going to see anything with three – or even four (since height, width, depth, and time seem ever-present and I xcan’t think of how to make a third of one).  But what happens when I get around to adding up to (as many as I can) more?  Anything happen at 13 such interleaved?

Math tried to answer idiotic questions like this (No!  Don’t be an idiot Ure!), but remember science said the Sun moved across the sky, the world was flat, and a whole lot else was gotten wrong.  Making up decimal points doesn’t rule of oddities.

Here’s what the Mobius three-some looks like:

Fanciful stuff – so far about as productive as our “luck attractor” project.

A reader said “You didn’t mention your Winnings on your recent Tulsa trip?

Let’s just say the odds of finding sasquatch are considerably better.  Oh, and cheaper.

Shop Prepping

World experiences a terrible earthquake tomorrow.  Let’s say a global 8.7.  Everywhere.  Nothing is open, power is down, and you need to fix your house.  How yah set?  A few hand tools, some charged-up battery packs and drills?  Hand saws?  Blue tarps?  Collection of fasteners and hammers, screwdrivers and whatnot?

No…didn’t think so.  Why, you probably don’t keep the gas tank half-full, a few MRE’s and a case of water in your trunk, either.

See, this is the defensive (as no power) mindset that could make a difference everywhere some day, or, around  Kilauea volcano any minute.

Shop talk is important.  In spite of what school district lawyers and insurance companies think, being able to MAKE things is a critical social skill.  It is the well from whence America sprang:  Work, build, enterprise.

Reposting correctness bullshit on FB?  Not so useful.  When America was being built, did you ever see neighbors coming together to make a post? Did they form HOA’s?  One’s that could tell them what colors to paint their homes?  Insanity is contagious. But I digress.

Summer is a miserable time to work in the shop in East Texas.  You can only “get after it” until about 10 AM.  By stretching out breakfast until 9, taking a phone call from one of the kids and checking bank and stock balances, that sometimes leaves only 4- minutes for actual work.  I pray for emails that need to be answered before 10 AM.

After that (as in Sunday) it’s only sensible to work for about 15-minutes before taking a cool-down break which means C/L, eBay, Amazon, and the ham radio websites.

92F and 80 percent humidity isn’t much fun.  Dehumidifier helps:  But trust me, while 93 and 68 percent humidity is an improvement, it’s not a BIG improvement.

As we discussed earlier in the year – back in in the ice age of 2018, swamp coolers don’t work. It’s like turning on a rust-your-tools machine.

Putting in the necessary a/c (4 tons, I figure) with plenty of insulation, wouldn’t make much sense.  I’m semi-retired, for crying out loud.  What’s so Uregent that can’t wait for Fall?

In the smattering of time in the shop lately, there are a few prepper / recovery items to mention (you’re welcome to steal ideas here). Let’s start with this one:

You ever in the process of making a little do-hickey in the shop and find you’re going back and forth to the hardware bins more than you’ve got hands on tools?  Bring all the fasteners out on the fastener cart!

I took one of my ATFSO (all-time favorite shop organizers) – those roll-around steel carts – and loaded the top tray of one up with every wood screw I could think of.  The small plastic organizer is the cat’s meow for those 1/2″ and 3/8″ screws you can never find around the bigger stuff.

Mine’s an old red cart, but I picked up another this week because Amazon has ’em on sale ($38 and change) for a Muscle Rack SC3016 Industrial Black Commercial Service Cart, Steel, 220Lbs Capacity.

Shopping Sidebar:  Amazon customer’s must not be very bright.  Amazon offers one cart on sale for $38.  Or, they will sell a two-pack for $160.  I could have skipped the MBA, right?

Next step in the shop tour?  All aboard!

Say you pick up a table-top drill press at a garage sale, C/L, or on sale at one of those traveling tool shows that go around the country.  What’s the biggest upgrade you can add?

Right!  Extended table…like so:

Always leave scraps of wood around your drill press.  You take one of those fancy-Dan short bar clamps and use a block (or two if you want to go totally overboard) so that when you are drilling, everything looks perfectly spaced.

It’s such a little thing, but it’s these ultra-tiny details (evenly spaced holes) that give people the illusion that you know what you’re doing.  Like having all your outlet cover screws up and down instead of….whatever.

The table is from a piece of scrap melamine-covered MDF which is widely used in cabinets.  MDF comes is 3 or 4 different qualities, so do spend the couple of extra bucks for the good stuff.  I used a couple of sheets on benchtops in the shop (edges as you can see with some 3/4″ facing ripped down from either a 1/4 (which is 3/4″ wide – they lie about such things – you know a 2-by-4 is maybe 1-1/2″ by 3-1/2″ right?) or a two by four.

Also notice in the background left is the squiggly chartreuse air hose and nose.  I keep promising myself I’ll blow off the drill press…but a competing theory says a thin layer of dirt protects things.

I owe you a follow-up on the adventures with the plasma cutter.  Here’s a sigil I tried to cut out of a rusted old top to a 55-gallon drum.

This (my very first pass with the torch) is not very impressive.  The straight line is because I had the good sense to set up a couple of welding magnets with a piece of 1/2″ angle iron.

The “circle” and the “bar” cuts were…well, let’s just say they need work.  I will offer a really good excuse for the quality of the cuts, though.  On good stock (not shown) you can actually adjust the air pressure, cutting amperage, and speed of the user to get a reasonable cut.  On old, rusty – not even prepped metal like this, the burn is way less than even.  And outside, under the welding table you end up with some pretty ugly scrap…

Neat, well-trimmed, squared off, rusty scrap…and maybe I will turn it into some kind of sculpture.

Put it all next to the “Luck Attractor” and the “topological anomalies” and write it all up here so our heirs will waste whatever inheritance is left (both dollars) on lawyers.

WHO, if they are any good, will be able to use columns like this one in the evidentiary sense to prove “No, Mr. Ure was not of sound mind…”

We, of course, know otherwise, of course.  Right?    Right?   Right? Right?

Peoplenomics tomorrow looks at a different kind of math – nice thing about wondering off into woo-woo, you can often come out of such encounters with useful concepts that could be really useful…  Otherwise, big-spender, more here Thursday.

Write when you get rich,

13 thoughts on “Coping: Practical Prepping Notes”

  1. Good morning George. Haven’t been around for a while. Busy! The new mobile app will take some getting used to. Love the large font though, way easier to read. Is there an option to go back to the web version. I looked but didnt find one. All is well. Just work, gym, sleep and kids. Not much time for anything else. That and some flirting via snap chat and messenger. Nothing of substance. I have limited patience for high maintenance nonsense.

    Markets been flat.. for a while.. not moving up or down..just a little of both. Reminds me if the summer of 2008… the only difference is the interest rate level by the fed. maybe I was wrong about the Dow hitting 32,000..

    So many people around here cant afford to live alone making solid money. Sad.

    Just popping in. Have a good day!

  2. Global major earthquakes, and you’re worried about ‘power tools’ and ‘fixing your own house’?

    Seems like that would more likely be ‘getting with friends’ because who knows if this was a ‘one-off event’ (not likely!) – People will need to get together for safety, to preserve what remains of civilization . . .

    • That’s easy: I don’t have any friends….and this is not much of a “civilization” is it?
      What are we to “preserve?”

      • “What are we to “preserve?””

        That’s a great question. What exactly are people always trying to “save” – debt payments? the bee killers, Monsanto? The Pope?

        I’m voting for Hillary next go-around. Not so much a vote against Trump, but becasue I’m trying to topple the system so will push with my vote. If I get a free, basic income along the way so be it, but that’s not the intent.

        • That’s the most rational reason to vote Hil I ever heard – install a crime family and get it over with!

      • Well, you know during ‘the Dark Ages’, when everything had ‘gone to Hell’ (or at least people thought so, what with the ravaging Vikings and all) – some thoughtful people like monks cared enough about knowledge and ‘civilization’ to keep the heart and soul of humanity together. Mindless dolts are ‘a dime a dozen’ and are to be avoided.

  3. If you’re retired, even more reason to AC the shop… we only have a few cool fall seasons remaining.
    My 34 year old son has a 2 ton mini-split AC in his insulated 3 car garage… suburban Dallas home. Cools it down real quick. makes a great man cave/shop.

  4. George, you could position a slab of deer meat in your back yard & set up your animal camera to snap a picture when Bigfoot comes in for snack. If you smell a foul odor, lock your doors & get your shotgun. The picture would be worth a fortune.

    I noticed some comments from preppers that refuse to realize that if the Transdimentional beings come after you, you are a goner, no matter how much you have prepped.

    Also, the fake news is a bastion of dissent against President Trump, because it is controlled by another dimension. They are not smart enough to have their own opinions. President Trump, unlike President Obama, presents a potential Transdimentional problem, so they use the fake news in hope of neutralizing him to bring on Armegedon of a sort.

  5. Well my retirement home is prepped to my liking, but if Mme.Pele (Kilauea volcano) decides to sent a finger of lava my way for a visit, the ‘urgent prepping’ becomes “What do I take with me… and where… and how soon.” Thousands here are doing this exercise right now.

  6. Mobius might work better crimped, rather than soldered. Some believe that lead pollutes…

    Landlubbers believed the world was flat. Sailors have known for 6000+ years that it was not, but to say so out loud was heresy.

    Global 8.7? No problem… unless it’s caused by an asteroid or supervolcano.

    Those service/utility carts are neat. My kids think I’m nuts because I buy them whenever I come across one at a yard sale — not to say I’m not nuts, but I don’t think populating one’s workshop with incredibly useful carts is a fair indication…

    I used melamine-covered particle-board shelving (dunno if it was MDF or OSB) for the top to my radial arm saw, when I restored it: ¾” x 2 pieces, glued together with Gorilla Glue. I also used ¾” x 2 pieces, glued, to make two crosscut fences and a rip fence. Not a huge fan of engineered particleboard in any flavor, but Sears’ original pieces were OSB and I loves the slickie surface.

    Drill press is still the less-sexy cast iron, but that’s because I drill much more steel and brass than I do, wood, and the vice is happiest, mounted directly to the table.


    Hank, were I you, I’d have a Jeep, LC, or Rover packed and at the ready, and cash, documents, &c in a Ziploc, in a lockbox or GO-bag that I could just grab. If She vents out her backside, you may only have two hours, and you’re not going to have access to the roads your neighbors will clog up. Generally speaking, you can outwalk a lava flow as long as you’re upwind of it, but you can’t carry much except your life, when you do.

    ’73s, and luck…

  7. Oh George I have to find that forestry investigation report to copy and send it to you.. lol lol lol.. that was done when you were on a tricycle and me in diapers lol lol lol.. you would get hoot out of it.. If my recollection is good a ranger seen that.. washing his caboose after relieving itself in the river lol lol lol..from what I read they attempted to bait it but it avoided all efforts. They found nut cracking area with hammer stones..

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