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MacGuyve-risms in the shop


#1

In a thread about Cloud Domes, someone wrote:

I have been using half of a large Heinz white vinegar bottle in
much the same way as a Cloud Dome 

I haven’t tried this use, but I found another good use for a vinegar
bottle in the shop.

I managed to destroy the original plastic dip basket in my pickle
pot (don’t ask…). An identical OEM replacement was wildly expensive
in all the catalogs and websites I checked. My brilliant husband,
who was a big fan of the old tv show “MacGuyver”, came up with a much
cheaper solution.

We use citric acid in the pickle pot. He thought for a bit about
what would stand up to citric acid, poked around the house, and found
an empty gallon-sized vinegar bottle. He cut the bottom off to the
same depth as the old basket, and drilled a couple hundred holes in
it with a hand drill. Then he removed the wire handle from the old
one and attached it to the new one. It fits perfectly inside the pot.

It’s been in the pickle pot for over two years now and looks brand
new. Cost? I think the gallon of vinegar cost $1.69. The vinegar was
used for household cleaning, so the bottle was actually a freebie.
And we’ve been using the cut-off top part of the jug as a funnel when
we drain the oil out of the vacuum pump to change it, so we didn’t
waste anything.

–Kathy Johnson
Feathered Gems Pet Motif Jewelry
http://www.featheredgems.com


#2

My pickle pot, a small crock pot, had no basket. I poked holes all
over a plastic butter tub using an ice pick and made a bail with
"telephone wire". I have rolls of this wire salvaged by my dad long
ago - basically just insulated copper wire about 18g to 20g counting
the insulation. We use it for LOTS of things!

Several years ago, I used silicone caulking to fit a cottage cheese
container with IV tubing and a sliding clamp to make a water drip
for times when I use a flat lap on the end of my Genie. The geyser
doesn’t work right and I don’t want to use re-circulated water on the
lap even though I’m not faceting.

Pam Chott
www.songofthephoenix.com


#3

I live in the American Southwest where “swamp coolers” are common.
For my pickle pot I use the plastic strainer basket from the swam
cooler pump.

Epaul
www.gemartist.com


#4

Pam, I use telephone wire for all sorts of things myself, it will
hold pieces of a larger project together without doing damage to the
work because of the coating. (not for soldering) I use it like one
would for binding wire but on wood when I’m clamping & gluing a
piece. For my pickle pot basket I use a tiny plastic Oxyclean scoop
with the handle cut off with a bail made from copper wire with tiny
holes drilled in the sides for my tiny pieces. Or a strainer from
the hospital that I received when I had my last kidney stone. For
larger items I use the handy butter tub also with a copper bail. I
have a thousand or so nettle bearings the I got from my brothers
mechanic, they are out of the U-joints of the semi trucks and they
are perfect size to use in my homemade wire jig. I have some that
I’ve polished up really good and put in a small file handle I use as
burnisher. and others I’ve ground to a fine point and used as a
graver. The metal cup thingys that they came out of are now used as
ashtrays in the mechanics shop as well as mine. I use some for
votive cup holders too. The Mechanic saves me all sorts of things
now. Including some of the bigger ball bearings from some other part
of the trucks that he’s replaced. I don’t know what I’ll use those
for but I’ll save them until I figure it out. I’ve used aluminum
flashing on the walls of my shop to reflect light and because I
love how it looks, with stainless steal strips that I salvaged from
a welding shop.

A coffee can serves as a dop oven with a small old oil lamp to burn
the alcohol.

But my favorite of all is my water source, it is the spare fuel tank
the wall above one end of my bench it holds 5 gallons of water. I
use a small galvanized oval shaped wash tub that collects the water
that drips from the used tubing from my son’s nebuliezer, that fits
onto the tiny sprayer I got at walmart out of lawn & garden dept for
$2.50 for 2. When the tub gets too full I set a fountain pump it it
and plug it up and it sends the water back up to the tank, the water
is filtered by a reusable coffee filter with a paper filter as well.
Eventually the I plan on having it set up to where the water will go
from the tub or some other holding pan to a 5 gallon bucket with a
beallage pump ( the kind of pumps that are in larger boats that are
water depth activated) that will then filter through a new fuel
filter back into the tank. This tank once contributed to his
crashing the airplane, there was too much weight on the back of the
plane and the wind was working against him and the back wheels
snagged on a fence. He was flung out, landing first on his shoulder
breaking the bone in his upper arm, then on his hip that was snapped
out like a donut. It could have been so much worse, but I’m glad to
know the second tank wont be going up with him again. I’ve got alot
more homemade things in my shop but that=92s enough for now. –

Love & Light Jurnee Moon


#5

I have a rather large item made of silver, and wanted to tumble it.
After considering and discarding a few crazy ideas, I settled on
getting a small drink cooler, one of those two gallon cannisters that
looks like a miniature version of the big coolers you see on trucks
at construction sites. It has a screw-on cover, for which I made a
silicon gasket, and a couple of fittings, which I sealed with silicon
compound. (I used that two-part silicon mold putty from Rio Grande,
great stuff.)

Once I was sure it wouldn’t leak, I put my tumbling media in it,
along with the item, sealed it up, and then wrapped it up in a heavy
blanket. I stuffed my dryer with pillows and blankets, stuck this
lump into the middle and packed it tight, and then I ran the dryer on
the “cool air” setting, so it wouldn’t cook the plastic. Lucky for
me, I broke the timer on the dryer so I can just turn it on and walk
away for any length of time, instead of having to keep coming back
and resetting the timer every thirty minutes.

Loren
http://www.golden-knots.com/


#6

Hi Jurnee,

. . .   The Mechanic saves me all sorts of things now. Including
some of the bigger ball bearings from some other part of the trucks
that he's replaced. I don't know what I'll use those for but I'll
save them until I figure it out. 

I’ve heard of welding larger diameter drills to them as handles and
using them for dapping. Not too helpful if all the bearings are the
same size, though. :slight_smile:

    But my favorite of all is my water source, it is the spare
fuel tank from my boyfriends Parachute Plane. It is in a steal
brace hung on the wall above one end of my bench it holds 5 gallons
of water. I use a small galvanized oval shaped wash tub that
collects the water that drips from the used tubing from my son's
nebuliezer, that fits onto the tiny sprayer I got at walmart out of
lawn & garden dept for $2.50 for 2. When the tub gets too full I
set a fountain pump it it and plug it up and it sends the water
back up to the tank, the water is filtered by a reusable coffee
filter with a paper filter as well. Eventually the I plan on having
it set up to where the water will go from the tub or some other
holding pan to a 5 gallon bucket with a beallage pump ( the kind of
pumps that are in larger boats that are water depth activated) that
will then filter through a new fuel filter back into the tank. 

How is this water used? Over time you might need to be concerned
about bacterial growth in the reused water. It will probably become
unhealthy even before molds or other evidence of contamination become
visible.

Pam Chott
www.songofthephoenix.com


#7

OK Here’s one for you;

Take an electric light dimmer and an outlet, make a small box, { or
use whatever} and install with the dimmer connected to the outlet
and a power cord connected to the dimmer, {easily found from any
trashed electrical]. Then purchase a cheap soldering iron with multi
tips and file them down to a point a spoon and a chisel tip. There
you not only have a light duty controllable rheostat, but a
controllable source for wax working!

Ringman


#8

Hi Pam,

I’ve read that you could use the ball bearings for dapping. But
these aren’t any bigger than my thumb and I already have a dapping
set. One day their use will be revealed to me until then they are
just pretty.

The water is for grinding/cutting stones. I do it all by hand with
my flexshaft. I also thought about the bacterial growth in the
water so if I’m not going to be working with stones for a few days I
just drain the tank. in the mean time I put a little Clorox bleach
in the water. I don’t reuse it more than 2 or 3 times any way and I
never really fill it full. I can just see it springing a leak and
making a huge mess in my shop. I’m in the process of shaping plexy
glass to dome over the top of my tub so the water doesn’t go all
over the place, I’m tired of my safty glasses being spattered with
gritty water and I’m tired of being soaked all the time it’s too
cold for that this time of year.

Love & Light
Jurnee Moon


#9

Loren, Very very interesting.

I make large items from sterling silver, hollow ware stuff, and was
always trying to figure out a way to tumble, looking more to harden
the silver. I have an old electric dryer that the element is burnt
out and was saving to make a tumbler for some other art work that I
do. I was just going to hard wire and put a switch, no timer or
anything. But what you said and do got me thinking. I could probably
make a rack to hold a large tumbler container, instead of having it
bounce around and make a lot of noise. Now is there a rule of thumb
of how big of container compared to the size of the object being
tumbled, and how much media? For instance if I have a goblet 7 inches
high and 4 inch diameter. I have never tumbled so I guess time to do
a little research. Thanks

Warren Townsend


Trenton, MI 48183