“Portable” is kind of a state of mind.

Finished what I originally wanted to do around one this afternoon and put all the tools away. That means dragging a lot of things, light and heavy, to the powershed.

powershed
One of these days – not this year, that’s for damned sure – I’m going to find myself wanting to replace or at least sincerely upgrade the powershed. I built it in 2012 out of the pieces of a much older shed some neighbors had used for a pantry, just because that was the year I first got a proper power system and I needed a roof over the charge controller, inverter and batteries. At first it was my pantry – what with the rodents that was always problematic – and just sort of fit my tools and a little seasonal clothing storage around that. Last autumn I was able to move the pantry and all the clothing out, which freed up a lot of room for tools and spares. The powershed works great for that, and I gave it a new floor last autumn, but to be honest the Lair is looking so much better that now I’m starting to think the powershed is a little shabby for the neighborhood. 🙂

But I digress. There’s room in there for all the tools, which I do try to keep out of the weather.

Anyway, I thought I was done working until I’d had a cup, wrote a blog post, ate a late lunch and had a walk around. Then I saw some tweaks that needed doing, and decided I didn’t feel like quitting after all.

stuff
Amusingly, just a few minutes after I set that piece of 4X4 under the middle of that one railing, I came inside to an email from a longtime faithful reader who said, “Dude, that one side railing is too long. You need a support there.” Yeah, I saw that.

Anyway, that meant dragging all the tools back out in the sun. I worked while I barbecued some pork for supper and breakfast, which helped me keep track of time – a pound of pork roast take 45 minutes in 15-minute segments, turning it each time the kitchen timer dings*. Keeps me honest.

Just fiddling, mostly, but it used up the last of my want-to. And then I was faced with that most terrible of decisions…

gen
“Carry it inside, or cover it and shove it under the addition?” I’m just going to want it again tomorrow, or in a day or two. Big Brother even sent me a custom cover for the thing, because it’s just so nice. And it does weigh about 60 pounds, which is a value of “portable” that seems more portable at the beginning of the day than at the end.

But it is indeed so nice. It’s apparently not set up for high altitude – as we discussed not long ago – so I don’t get the full benefit of all that built-in niceness but it’s still one damned fine little generator, and this is coming from a guy who learned to hate small generators in my first few years here. And I know enough about small engines to know how to keep it nice. Step one: Don’t leave them out in the weather.

I used that nice custom cover to keep it from getting dusty while it spent most of the winter emptied and carefully mothballed – indoors.


*Try it with crack sauce for marinade, which I guarantee would convert a vegan.

About Joel

You shouldn't ask these questions of a paranoid recluse, you know.
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12 Responses to “Portable” is kind of a state of mind.

  1. Ben says:

    We need to help Joel with his project list: How about porch roof & screening in FY 2019, and new power shed in FY 2020?

    Of course, we should assume that Landlady will want the new shed to be “cute”. So I will kick off discussion by proposing a miniature of the original lair, with the same roof and (of course) the same paint.

    Consider Hardie board over a braced 2×4 frame. Design it to be critter-tight and use a store-bought door.

    Ideas?

  2. Mike says:

    I took a look at the “crack sauce” because I’m always on the hunt for stuff like that. The $8.67 USD price for 2 bottles looked pretty reasonable so I went to Amazon’s Canadian site. On Amazon.ca the price tag of CDN$ 20.08 + CDN$ 36.82 shipping per bottle looked a little steep for me, so I’ll just have to take your word about how good it is until I find a retailer that carries it up here.

  3. Andrew says:

    Joel, you need to make/get a ‘power wagon’ for your generator and select tools to fit into. It will help your back and give you an easy way to quickly move it when you’re beat from working.

    Plus, I am sure Landlady will enjoy seeing you pull around a wagon.

  4. Ben says:

    Mike try Walmart.com for the Mae ploy sauce. Increasingly it pays to shop when buying on the Internet .

  5. jabrwok says:

    you need to make/get a ‘power wagon’ for your generator

    Seconded. Putting heavy stuff on wheels makes life *so* much easier. A web search for “DIY generator cart” turns up lots of good ideas.

  6. Ben says:

    For carrying the generator all you really need is a cheap hand truck and a bungee cord. You will find other appropriate uses for the hand truck, and your back will thank you every time.

  7. Mike says:

    Thanks for the heads up Ben. The problem isn’t getting the stuff from the States, it’s getting it through Canada Costumes, When I looked at Walmart.com and a few other American sites last night, I found it has the same shipping issues that Amazon has. I then did a check with Canada Customs and for whatever reason, the Canadian Government has a hate on for this stuff. Never fear though, last night I found a Canadian restaurant/grocery supplier that carries this product and this morning I was into the local market and had a chat with the manager. He has agreed to order a trial batch for me so I should have a taste in a couple of days, a week at most. Now, I just hope that after all this running around the sauce lives up to it’s billing. :^)

  8. Edward says:

    Check! Joel needs a new better storage/power shed. Would 8X8 floor space, and 8 high walls front tapering to 7 ft rear do the trick? That represents 13 sheets of exterior grade plywood, 7 treated 8′ 4×4’s for the floor support and a mess of 8 ft 2×4’s. for verticals and roof supports. Oh yeah, one nice steel door with frame and lock. Maybe 400 in materials? 20 readers at 20 bucks each and done, BTW – small 18X18X18 inch box of useful stuff on way to your mail drop.

  9. Kentucky says:

    I just priced 1/2″ CDX plywood locally . . . $34 per sheet . . . that’s $442 right there.

  10. Andrew says:

    Ben, the reason I suggested a wagon is I forgot completely about a cheap hand truck. Doh! But… sometimes, especially over bad ground, 4 wheels good, 2 wheels bad. Especially since I don’t know how much Joel’s leg affects his balance (I have problems using a hand truck on mostly level ground, so I tend to judge others by my balance, or lack thereof.)

  11. Norman says:

    They’ve gone all kinds of spendy in recent years, but I’ll enter a vote for the 4-wheel 2 ft X 4 ft garden carts (Lowe’s, Home Despot, Amazon, et al). I got mine from Lowe’s back around 2002 for about $60 on sale, dropped a 3/4 plywood “floor” in it and never looked back. Only down side is pneumatic tires which require air from tme to time (I’d vote for “flatless” except I’m not sure they’d suffice for the (supposed) 1K lbs capacity of the cart). During the 2004 hurricanes I used it to ferry a 160 lb gennie (EU3000i) and some other stuff around, recently used it to haul 82 lb concrete blocks 5 at a time for a wall I was building. The sides hinge down and are easily removable, stuff way longer than 4 ft can be carried, some – now – have lawn tractor-friendly handles (or adapters for the handles) so they can be gasoline-pulled, and a little Redneck Engineering with some steel angle iron, 3/4 rod, and a cut lengthwise 55 gal drum easily produces a hinged “dump bucket” that fits perfectly, (the non-welding among us can use 6-8 five gallon buckets for the same purpose), and for the storage-space-challenged it can be stored vertically on its back end.

  12. Joel says:

    Oh, don’t remind me. I had a chance to scrounge one of those little metal wagons three years ago – and I passed because the tires were rotten and I didn’t know at the time how or where I’d ever get replacements. Turns out it would have been simple, since right after that Neighbor D replaced the tires on his own that they actually didn’t cost much.

    Sigh. Figured at the time, I’ve already got plenty of junk lying around the yard, y’know?

    I do have a cheap handcart, though, and for some reason it never occurred to me to use it on the generator. I’ll be doing that right after breakfast today. I don’t imagine it will work with the chop saw, but it should be fine for the generator.

To the stake with the heretic!