Monday, May 31, 2004

Preparing for the heat

I am feeling better now, finally. I still have a bit of booger patrol to contend with, particularly at night. My physical activity is back up to regular now that I'm feeling better. So with all my blustering energy I've taken on some new projects.

The first was on Wednesday. I went over to MCE and FE's place to help move some firewood and bricks from the side of the house to make room for the contractors and their equipment. That was some back breaking shit right there. Load up a wheel barrel full of spider laden ( Black widows no less ) firewood and big ole footpath type cement blocks and haul em off to another part of the garden, that will HOPEFULLY be out of the way. Did I mention the spiders? Tons of em. Big, black, bulbous, goo-filled spiders by the fist load. There was a considerable amount of caterpillar cocoons there too, which is something I've never seen close up before. In this area most of the caterpillars are about 2 inches long and solid black and totally fuzzy. It kinda looks like Groucho Marks eyebrow moving along.

Saturday, with the rain-out on the Indy 500, I began to work on the stand for a new window mount air-conditioner. It's an LG brand, 1000 BTU, cold-only model with a remote and some automation features that make it pretty nice. It will be replacing a much smaller one, fitting in the same room and window where the old one is now. Unfortunately these things are made to be put into a up-down sliding window and not a left-right sliding window. Every window on the block is a left-right slider... So a stand and all sorts of window modifications need to be made to accommodate this beast.

Well to get the job done I had to scratch up some plans and run down to homers depot to get materials. That place was a fucking zoo on "feed the monkey day." I picked up a drill, got some lumber and had it cut. I made the mistake of getting brass wood screws, more on that later. I got some paint and some drill bits and more fasteners. Having the wood cut at home depot, was a huge time saver in the long run. It was $1.50 to have them cut it and considering I didn't have to measure it or cut it one by one with a skill saw.. damn well worth a buck and a half.

I got all my parts home and immediately commenced to assemble the design. At first I was a bit un-organized. It was a lot of head scratching and looking for things and not much work being done. As things moved along I got a better idea of what needed to be done in what order and things came together as I had planned. I would be patting my self on the back at bit more if I hadn't foolishly selected those FUCKING brass screws.

I drilled pilot holes, plenty deep mind you, and these were #8 3" wood screws. I must have stripped the head of 4 of them. Did I buy extra screws? Fuck no, I am WAY to stupid to consider the blasphemous possibility that I, the great carpenter, with almost no experience, could make a mistake. "Pfft, how many does the project need? Well, that's how many you buy, damnit!"

So now there are some nicely painted and stripped wood screws sticking out about a 1/4" to 1/2" or so from various parts of my stand. If it wasn't just an air-conditioner stand I probably would have fixed it. I just want to get the fucker done with.