Monday, June 6, 2022

Blue 2, What's your status?

 Well....It's been a busy week.  The new workshop finally had the proper electrical circuitry installed this past week.  A 200 something Circuit Breaker (Watts? Amps? I don't know. I speak Pilot.) That was the critical point for installation of the Air Conditioner.  Air Conditioning being absolutely necessary in this time period in Texas.  The AC unit has been ordered and is expected this week.  However, as we're all well aware.  "Never underestimate the power of Joe to ...expletive deleted ... things up." 

We shall see.  Once that is installed, interior wall installation is next, then calling the young lads with strong backs to move the heavy equipment from the old shop to the new.   

At that point, woodworking wise, all will be right with the world.  Which doesn't mean that woodworking hasn't been going on at Rancho Juvat.  Nosiree!  Mrs. J made an executive decision that the water here is way too hard for our guests and therefore must be softened.  

So it was spoken, so it must be!

Realizing that my plumbing skills are at least as wanting as my electrical skills, I called Culligan, who came and installed a reverse osmosis water softener in each cabin.  Unfortunately, there isn't much spare room in each cabin. So the RO's are a bit of an eye sore.

This one is between the Fridge to the right of the picture and the water heater to the left.  It's "good feature" is it's out of foot traffic way. This cabin had been built for my sister to live in, so its design is a little more home like than short term guest like. However, with the completion of Operation "Everyone move one house clockwise", the cabin is strictly for guests now. So...Mrs. J has spoken.

Still out of the way and now, out of sight also, with a little bit of additional storage on top.

The other cabin, which has always been for guests, has larger guest rooms and a different kitchen configuration, so the RO system couldn't go in there.  Nor would Mrs. J allow it in the Living Room or either of the Bedrooms. which left....

Unfortunately, this will take a bit more creativity.  As...

Theoretically, I could just box it in similar to the other cabin.  But, that pesky light switch.  I think I'm going to do a similar stepped front like the other cabin.  Still trying to figure that out right now.  That's the project for this week.

Mrs. J has planted vegetables in her garden.  Unfortunately, that garden is on the west side of the house.  This is Texas.  She asked me if I would help her set up some netting around the garden to provide shade.  I said OK.

Driving T-Posts?  Now THAT's Fun! Just imagine it's your favorite "dumb as a T-Post" politician acquaintance and drive away.  Fortunately, we'd had a bit of rain the night before.  

In addition to Mrs. J's work orders, I received one from MBD and MG.  Apparently, MG likes to be read to before bed.  Therefore, MBD did research on book shelves and found some she liked in a catalog and asked if I could make some for her.  

How hard can that be?  Well,  when your table saw is in one wood-shop, most of its tools are in the other and your table top power tools are set up in the Garage...Let's just say it's more difficult than I allowed time for.  

The good thing is I learned a lot about several things.  I relearned Fractions as I tried to figure out where to drill a partial hole in the same spot of different pieces so the dowel that would serve as the book rail would be level.

Guess which one I realized I had screwed up the math needed to divide a fraction by 2? (Just in case I forget again, keep the top number the same and multiply the bottom by 2.)

I also learned that plywood is ugly and requires some makeup to be applied to cut/visible edges.  It also doesn't have much grain.  Grain is what makes the latest "In" trend in woodworking, Color Washing, work.  You apply the wash, wait a minute then wipe it off.  The high part of the grain gets cleaned while the low part gets highlighted by the wash.


Top one has the color wash applied.  Bottom has the base stain only.

Unfortunately, my attempts ended up looking like I just dabbed some paint on it.  MBD agreed and authorized a normal white paint job.

So it is spoken, so it shall be.  

And I get another trip to Lowe's as my reward.

So...I've got that going for me!

Peace Out, y'all!


  1. 200 amps, more power and the dilithium crystals should stand up to the demands. That's more than enough to drive a welder. Hmm. Don't weld indoors and don't look at the bright light.

    Nice work enclosing the softeners.

    The bookshelf looks good and there are a number plywood edge treatments you could try next time.

    We expect to finish replacing the rusted top rail of our pool fence today, in theory, and if I added up all the numbers correctly, five sections of top rail will finish the job, and leave less than a foot of scrap. Or we will make another trip to Lowes.

    1. JiP,
      Thanks for clarifying terminology. Not sure if welding is in my future. Lots of stuff I don't know in that skill sett. Well, except for fires.

      Re: Edge Treatment. I used edge banding, but that was even less porous than plywood. Painted them white yesterday got some touching up to do, but they look much better.

      Extra trips to Lowe's are good.

  2. Since your tools and accoutrements are spread among three locations, your daily step requirement is met faster, eh? RO covering looks muy bueno.

    1. I am DEFINITELY making my step count. Generally around lunch.


  3. I see you're keeping yourself busy, so yeah, you've got that going for you. Which is nice.

    BTW, congratulations and felicitations upon the anniversary of your coming into the world.


    1. Will do. Thanks. Delivery of bookshelves to CStat planned for today.

  4. The retrofitting looks wonderful. And yes, plywood leaves much to be desired.

    Good luck on the air conditioner!

  5. Plywood has gone so very far dounhill, just in my lifetime. And that's just the surface you see! Work looks good.

    1. You're right about the wood, htom. Thanks.

  6. Remember how hard and "tasty" Lubbock water was? We had well water after we moved out side of town. Sweet, cool and not too hard. But, lather is overrated. I mean, have you ever felt like you get all the soap off at a motel? I feel oily after bathing when they have a softener.

    I used to make an adjustable book rack with two dowels and a couple 2x12 cutoffs. I'd make them for birthday presents. I don't know if I have any around here to send a picture of. Hmmm....

    200 Amp is the usual service for a full size house. You should have all you need for running large power tools.

    1. STxAR,
      Yes I do, and that was after leaving Big Spring, whose water was nothing to sing about. Our water here tastes pretty good pre-filtering. The RO's are more to prevent the stains they put on the sinks and such. But, you're right about the after shower oiliness,

      Adjusttable Bookrack? Hmmm, now that would be an interesting project.

      Well, they only put in one CB for the 200 Amp service and the AC, so don't know if I'll get to the point I need it for wood working, but more power? But of Course!

  7. Congrats on being electrified!! AC is indeed important, but once you get a sander or a planer or a table saw of some sort in there, it might be smart to not have EVERYTHING running on a single circuit breaker. I'm barely literate in electrical, but I do know that when you start up something (sander, dust collector blower, table saw, AC, etc) there is something called start-up draw...which pulls a bit more than usual and circuits can get overwhelmed and decide they need a break...which leads to you having to take a break too...usually at the most inconvenient time. Talk to your electrical people to prevent damage to your equipment, or to having to call those fellas and gals that drive around in red trucks with flashing lights up top and lots of loud siren type noise. Just my 0.02 cents worth.

    Congrats on your birthday!! Hope you have a great day!!

    1. Suz,
      The breaker panel in the new woodshop has several 100Amp (Thank you for clarifying, STxAR) circuit breakers. The 200 Amp one is intended solely for the AC. So, I think I'm gonna be fine.
      Thanks, BD was great and seeing MBD, SIL and MG was fabulous.

  8. Volts x Watts = Amperes. North American household voltage is nominally 120V but can be as low as 110V due to line loss (how far are you from the substation?). One horsepower equals 746 watts so if you have a heavy duty saw with a 2hp motor then 2 x 746 = 1492W, 1492W divided by 120V is 12.43A which is okay on a dedicated 15A breaker but if there is another draw on that circuit the breaker will most likely pop. Be sure your electrician knows the horsepower rating of any equipment beforehand. A 15A circuit uses 14gauge wire while a 20A circuit uses 12gauge and a 30A uses 10gauge wiring, once the wires are run you cannot change the safe amperage of the circuit without opening the wall and changing the wiring.

    1. Ahh Geez, Al, Sarge promised there'd be no math. Well, except for fractions.
      That having been said. Those are good things to know and I think I'm going to cut and paste this and put it into my important info file on a regular backup schedule.
      Thanks a bunch.

  9. Yes, plywood has gone downhill. A kind carpenter built three bookshelves for our little city library. As volunteer (i.e., unpaid) librarian, I had the job of painting them. Twenty years ago, the plywood wouldn't have been used for concrete forms. The first coat of primer just disappeared. And rough-it was like painting a tree with the bark still on it...

    1. Don, pretty much the same results. Even the White paint itself needs two coats and in some areas three. But they finally ended up looking pretty good. Didn't get to deliver them this past weekend as they weren't dry yet. But it's a convenient excuse to see the kids again.

  10. Well, you're making things 'work', and that is what counts (along with keeping the Mrs. happy)! :-)

  11. Well done, and Happy Birthday! My woodworking skills are limited to repairs and building workbenches!


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