Daily Archives: May 4, 2012

Mechanical Disadvantage – Fulcrums, Chinese Steel and Gorilla Glue

Hi readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read this morning.

The project outdoors seems simple enough.  Clearing the intrusive cedars from under the oaks. 

Establishing a gentle downhill grade across slopes.

Creating a series of rock and brush berms to intercept the runoff and direct it across the slope to slow the concentration times during heavy rainfall runoff.

I followed the grades with a carpenter-level and board, mainly, keeping it to about a quarter-bubble.

Filling the deep ruts in the road with brush to rob the water of the siltation load.

Even the tools are uncomplicated.  But of course, a person has to find a wheel barrow tire that isn’t flat.

I eventually found this solid rubber one – bought the wheel barrow from a garage sale for the solid rubber tire.

I was a long while getting to it.

But a solid rubber wheel barrow tire beats a dozen Chinese flat ones.

The arms on the loppers you see in the green wheel barrow don’t provide a lot of mechanical advantage and require a lot of stoop labor.  Naturally, I was elated when I found this one in a thrift store with telescoping arms.  $8 US bucks.  Cheap at twice the price.

When I got home I broke the first arm off in about 20 minutes.  After I cut off the break and put it back together I broke the other one off 20 minutes later.

Chinese steel rears its ugly head.

This was obviously going to require some modifications.  A sleeve to go over that weak point, something to fill in the space between the sleeve and the joint/handle.  Nothing to it.

I was going to melt down some old shower shoes to pour into the space, but Gale suggested silicone caulk. 

But my tube of caulk was dried out, so I decided on Gorilla Glue instead.

Here’s how long it took to discover the next weak point in the design.

The culprit.

Who but the Chinese could produce a bolt a man could spang break in half?

Well, Mister Commie, you might think this is over, but it ain’t.  I’ve got another dance or two left in me.

Old Jules