My Sky Color

A forty something Dad, Husband, Engineer guy living in Western Oregon. Reflections on all things in life. A few technical things and whatever else comes along.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Bragging Rights
So I have been mechanicking lately. I have the lawn tractor operational. All fluids changed, new starter belt, wiring straightened out, drive system adjusted and lubricated. You can see who is happy. I need to build a trailer so I can put him to work.

The oldest gave a presentation to the School Board about class activities. He started off with an experiment then gave some examples of idioms. No note cards just from memory. The experiment spilt hot water all over the table which made it exciting.

This is Dad carefully dumping the baking soda into the vinegar to launch the rocket. The first try resulted in premature launch while I was still holding the rocket. This one worked with about 50 feet in the air achieved.

Saturday was all blue sky. I worked for a couple hours to get the old TD9 loader running. The eldest help for several hours pulling out dead trees. One big alder was only 1/4 dead. I tried to dig around it so it could be pushed over. In the prcess I dug up the cable tv/computer, made a big mess, got stuck down in my hole and ended up cutting the darn tree down with the chain saw. The neighbor dug me out with his wheel tractor. The boy got to drive for awhile dragging logs up the driveway to burn or be cut into firewood.

I am learning with old equipment you can't have too many good batteries. I am getting a free Jeep Cherokee to find a home for.

I received my latest E-bay purchase, a 300 Whisper Contender barrel. It is a specialty cartidge that uses a very small case to launch a heavy 30 caliber bullet at subsonic velocity. The bullet is a very efficient flier so it loses very little velocity down range. Its original purpose is for use with a silencer. It will shoot lighter 30 cal bullets at over 2300 fps. I don't know if I will go the legal silencer route due to the cost and hassle. I will probably just use it for hunting and shooting fun.

Lots going on. Nine days to visiting Mickey Mouse. It is all about the children. DMP

Friday, April 14, 2006

The 3-legged goat is doing okay. He is making his way around on three legs. The splint is holding up and hasn't been eaten. I am planning on calling the vet for some free advice on how long I should keep the splint on. He is a large animal vet with his feet on the ground. He told me that goats are worth 100 bucks and a visit to our place would run 250 bucks. You do the math on whether or not to put them down.
If you need a little patriotic twinge, check this out:
By the way, the lawn tractor made the maiden voyage last night to the delight of a 6 year old.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Vet Bills... Not!
When spring comes to the NW odd things start happening. The frogs start croaking first in February. Then the trilliums show their faces and bloom. The relestness in the air affects the goat herd as well. They run and jump with a little wild stallion kicking here and there.
We had a strange thing occur this spring with the sap coming up in the trees and then a hard frost. The evergreens got frost bite.
The big goat, Spike, likes to wander in the spring. Fences are only for looks to him. He can hop over most 5 foot fences like a deer. For the past 10 days the battle to protect the flowers in the yard from goat attach has been going on. After tethering him over night so he didn't get to sleep in the barn or boss the herd around, we thought he had gotten the message. He stayed in the pasture all day giving the appearance of being a good goat. Last night it became more than he could stand and he jumped out. This time he didn't clear the gate completely. I wasn't watching but my wife saw it. He caught his right from leg and wrenched it. So there he is hobbling about on three legs with the right front held high. After getting everything battened down for the night I went and checked him over. If I held his knee I could move his hoof side to side. He broke it a couple inches down from the knee.
Now goats are a hundred dollar kind of critter so getting the vet out is crazy at $250 a visit. Spike is the last of the three goats that came with the place and he has lots of character. He grows wonderful wool. So I didn't want to have "put 'em down."
My mind kicks into gear on how to fix a broken leg on a goat... I spot some scrap 1x1 aluminum angle. We gather the lights, scissors, aluminum angle and the duct tape. We throw the goat and hold him down. I cut two pieces of angle and cover them in tee shirt strips to limit the abrasion. I then get one attached to the hoof and inside of his leg. So in what position do you splint a goat's leg? I made my best guess and taped 'er down. Unlike what I have read and seen on TV there was no pulling and setting required. The joint wasn't sucked together be the tendons and muscles. I taped the other "splint" to the outside of his leg, then wrapped it up with duct tape. The poor guy, you could tell it really hurt when I moved the leg around.
Now time will tell. It will either work or it won't. We would like to keep him around but it is a quality of life versus selfish desires. It really is no fun shooting your pet. DMP

Thursday, April 06, 2006

New Home - New Future
So Theo has a new home. He now lives with a young Coast Guard family from Virginia. He was an interesting pet. Due to his nocturnal life he wasn't the most feedback giving of pets. Hopefully he will be well cared for and happy as a rodent(?) can be. He may not be a rodent. DMP