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Monday, September 15, 2014


He got my attention by talking about engineers and politicians.

engineers SOLVE problems by breaking big problems and big issues into small ones, which can be solved one at a time.  Politicians cannot and will not do that, instead making problems bigger and bigger, while lying (to themselves and others) about how they have the knowledge and experience (and power) to solve the big problems.

And that difference is why I hold politicians in such low esteem.

I must confess that I've made my living by being an engineer for several decades.  Actually since 1975.  And yes my career is close to the end, maybe another 5 or 7 years and I'll retire.

Not only is engineering my profession, it is who I am.  Even my hobbies are technical in nature.

I must confess that I have no understanding of the mind that does not use logic and problem solving techniques on a daily basis.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Loading The 454 Casull

Since I'm waiting on materials to finish the deck and I've needed a break from the physical labor, I now have 100 rounds of brass all prepared for loading 454 cartridges.  Well I did. Tonight I stuffed AA#9 and 240 grain XTP/Mag bullets in 50 of them.  I dropped the charge by 1-1/2 grains, expecting the muzzle velocity to be reduced from close to 1800 to somewhere about 1700, or maybe 1750 f/s.  According to my Hornady manual, running at 1800 is a near Max pressure load, and rough on the hand as well.  25 rounds out of the big Ruger at that velocity causes my hand to swell.  It's like getting hit with a small hammer every time I press the trigger.

My 300 grain bullet load is more like a heavy push in the revolver.  Been using H110 to push it close to 1600 f/s from the revolver and close to 3200 from the rifle.  Since higher pressure and longer burn time can both increase velocity, I sent an e-mail to Hornady asking if that much velocity increase means it's pushing the pressure limit in the lever action.  I think I'll wait a little for a response before trying the 300 grain load in the rifle again.

The next time out I'll try the new 240 grain load in the revolver and lever action across the chronograph.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Off The Horses Ass

Apparently the new horse dumped the granddaughter 3 times last week.  The Boss and I went over there today.  Saddled the horse, and the mare went crazy when the Boss even started to mount.  The Boss walked her around the pasture for a while and tried again.  This time Boss got her leg in the air over the saddle, and the mare twisted aware from her.  The Boss slid right off the horses butt and landed on her feet.  Expert help was called.

Seems the granddaughter has been riding bare back, on a horse that's never been ridden that way before.  The horse is part arabian, so a bit spirited, in a new environment with new people.  Seems the granddaughter has caused the issue. It may take several training sessions to fix this. It took the expert about 45 minutes to calm the mare.  She stood as still as a rock being mounted.  The Boss and the expert took a trail ride while I snoozed in the truck.

The Boss ended up riding a saddle that didn't fit her.  It got her bad back hurting, but temporary.  We'll see how she feels in the morning.

We're still learning about horses.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Broke no More

In between house projects I managed to get the 454 lever action back together.  In the process I learned why it locked up at the range.  There is a pin that goes through the bottom of the bolt that keeps the spring loaded ejector in place and is also the connection to the lever.  That pin worked loose.  It then jammed on the inside of the receiver.

The empty case removed showed no signs of excessive pressure.  Having said that, I'm going to reduce the powder charge a little, or maybe find a suitable powder that burns slower than H110.  Dropping the 300 Gr bullet to a little under 2250 F/S won't really bother me much.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Obama = Dickhead

Tried my best to ignore all news programs this last week, but did happen to see a short clip of Obama.  He said he didn't have a strategy regarding the ISIS/ISIL situation.  What a dickhead he is.

Construction Issues

We got back from our little getaway late Thursday afternoon. 

I worked on the deck framing all day Friday.  I've personally built 3 decks before, and this is by far the hardest, partially because of what I'm trying to accomplish, the damn hot weather and mostly because of the material supplier.  Instead of multiple trips with my little truck, I paid extra for all the raw material to be delivered at the same time.

The first issue is that the railing and spindles showed up gray, when the Boss wanted red.  While the son and I sweated, she took the stuff back, argued with the supplier and got the correct color ordered.

Then yesterday I was at the point where I could start installing the flooring.  When I cut open the plastic wrap, the color was correct but the type was wrong.  It was the cheaper hollow core when I wanted the solid material.

The Boss got on the phone and talked to a manager.  The new railing and floor boards will be delivered in about a week.  The trucker will take the other back with him.  Between now and then, I should be able to frame out the ramp entrance to the deck.

The horse we bought is at her new home.  Took the Boss, granddaughter and one of her friends there this afternoon.  I enjoyed watching the girls and their horse.  The Boss picket out a saddle while we were gone, and it seemed to fit the horse just fine.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Still Here, Very Busy

Took the last of my vacation days starting last Wednesday through next week.  Use it or lose it time.

Last Wednesday through Saturday was spent constructing a base and assembling a yard shed for yard tools, and also starting the framing for a deck for the front of the house.  All that between the rain and in the high humidity and heat.  Been working in soggy clothes from the rain and sweat to the point of feeling like I have diaper rash.  I hate it when stepping brings a sloshing sound from my shoes due to sweat.

Took the day off to rest, but went with the Boss to look at a horse for the third time.  The pretty little Arabian mare dances a little when climbing aboard.  The Boss hasn't been on a horse in decades, but gave it a good try.  That's the first time I saw someone fall off a horse, before actually getting in the saddle.  We bought that horse anyway.  The second time up went well, and the Arabian settles right down. Compared to a quarter horse, she's like riding a cloud, so I'm told.

I got on a little Walker that was so responsive that I had to be careful about the signals I gave, whether intentional or not.  It was a strange feeling.  The last time I rode was years ago in the Rocky Mountains on a wilderness elk hunt.

Tomorrow we're off to a cabin for a few days of relaxation.  Then this coming weekend, I'll be working on the deck again.  Hopefully the weather won't be so hot.