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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 04-22-2007, 09:58 AM   #221
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
As I mentioned to someone else, this beats the crap out of driving a desk and dealing with corporate BS.
Couldn't agree more. It is very satisfying to look at something that you've done to make the home better. None of it may be very complex in itself, but it all adds up. And a fixed sink has more real impact than crafting and coordinating some obscure new policy that will be forgotten or OBE in 6 months.

I'm getting better at deciding which jobs shold do myself and which I should hire out. A big part of the decision is how much fun the work will be. Regardless, I've found it useful to do enough research to know exactly how I'd do the job IF I did it myself. It's the only way to know if the tradesman I eventually call in for an estimate (if he will show up) knows what he's doing. \
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 04-22-2007, 10:31 AM   #222
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
I went out for a pump gasket yesterday and came back with a gasket, a new weed whacker (40cc's!), a bunch of slide out shelves for the pantry, groceries and I had sushi while I was out since it was taking so long.
I think you are just experiencing a very full job jar. It will continue until you make the place yours. Not ADD more like JJD (job jar disorder). I had that affliction after I bought an acreage for about three years.

But you will really enjoy it when the job jar returns to a reasonable level.

Also the memories of work probably bounce around in your head while you perform simple physical tasks. I always used to come up with work solutions while riding the lawnmower.
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 04-22-2007, 12:28 PM   #223
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

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As I mentioned to someone else, this beats the crap out of driving a desk and dealing with corporate BS.
I am however suffering from extreme attention deficit disorder. I start out to do something and an hour later discover I havent done it yet, but i've spackled, painted and reattached four other things.
I went out for a pump gasket yesterday and came back with a gasket, a new weed whacker (40cc's!), a bunch of slide out shelves for the pantry, groceries and I had sushi while I was out since it was taking so long.
This cannot draw a comparison with listening to a couple of 40-50something guys whining for three days straight about how they want a program renamed to what they like, because the whole thing is similar to an idea they had three years ago but never were able to get approved by management.
Or having the thirtieth 'cost cutting' meeting where we decide to keep all the 100k a year people, but take away their cell phones so as to make them unreachable when someone needs the important knowledge they have that is the reason for paying them the 100k in the first place.
C'mon, guys (and I mean that in every Dave Barry testosterone-poisoned sense of the word), are you really paying attention to what we're reading here?

While enjoying this impassioned indictment of the modern American workforce, one incredibly significant and culturally critical phrase leaped off the screen at me:

40 ccs!!!

Dude, I'm impressed. I'm envious. I'm feeling incipient consumer lust. Does that come with a fuel backpack and its own wheels? More importantly, does it come with its own Kevlar apron & chainsaw boots? Exactly what steroid-fueled weed needs a whacker with that horsepower?

Just to level the playing field, I'm sure that next year's celebration of the Darwin Awards will come with a separate 40-cc category... "Hold my beer, Bubba, while I start this puppy up and show you how to git 'er done!"
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 04-22-2007, 07:22 PM   #224
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

Hey, if you want one you better run fast to Sears, they're clearancing the 40cc models out for $179 and I got the last one at my sears, with another guy buying the second to last one right in front of me. The replacement is a 31 or 32cc unit. Useless.

Do bear in mind that this has the click-lock attachment setup and I have a whole shed full of those, including the chain saw, the tiller, the edger and the humongous hedge trimmer. My old 31cc unit used to cough a bit on the tiller and the hedge trimmer.
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 04-22-2007, 09:31 PM   #225
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

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Originally Posted by Cute Fuzzy Bunny
Do bear in mind that this has the click-lock attachment setup and I have a whole shed full of those, including the chain saw, the tiller, the edger and the humongous hedge trimmer. My old 31cc unit used to cough a bit on the tiller and the hedge trimmer.
I'll have to take a look at that. I'm using separate machines for the bougainvillea hedge (10' high) and the back slope weedwhacking, and the storage is getting a little out of hand...
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 04-22-2007, 09:41 PM   #226
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

Its the bomb. I bought up a bunch of the attachments for $70-90 each with a 20-25 rebate or gift card at lowes or other places over time. Nice to have one large power head to maintain and just a bunch of sticks for the rest. Theres a blower and some other attachments for it as well. Its a four cycle unit, so no gas/oil mixing, doesnt smoke as much, and should last a bit longer.

I tried out the trimmer on the new head. Quite impressive. Gives about a 5-6' reach from the hand you're pulling the trigger with. I was chopping back 15'+ high hedges using a short ladder with relative ease vs the electric jobbies and the electric hedge cutters on a stick all sucked. Not a lightweight tool and...umm...it was quite a 'manly' item even with the 31cc powerhead, so its something you'd want to use with some caution (oh go ahead and get after me about the 'manly' thing ladies...)...with the 40cc head its a monster. Cuts 3/4" limbs with no trouble and 'nibbles' through inch thick material with a little effort.

I dont have anything super tall at the new place, but I have a lot of stuff thats wide and 'off the path'. Its nice to be able to cut a smooth top on a 10' wide shrub without having to wade into it.

If you're having trouble finding the 40cc unit at your local sears, Orchard supply hardware had a bunch, but last time I was in there they didnt have it on any clearance sale, still the original $229 that was holding me at bay the last six months or so.

Pretty much still a bargain if you load up on 3-4 of the option heads, sell all your old discrete units for a reasonable price, and cut your garage space needs and maintenance needs by a bit.

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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 05-04-2007, 08:42 PM   #227
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

Well, if anyone gives a hoot, tomorrows the last 'big push'. Most of our stuff is here and whirled up appropriately, except my tools are all over the garage in various boxes and on shelves here and there. I can never find what I'm looking for. We're down to the stuff we're not sure we want anymore and a couple of pieces of ancillary furniture I could live without.

Except for painting a couple of parts of the exterior that were replaced by the dry rot guys, and installation of some nice cheap marble tile I found for the two fireplaces, we're all done with the work in the new house. Temporarily.

I cut in our new whole house fan yesterday. Way more fun than I should have.

Gabe has decided that this is the moment in life to start potty training himself. We got him his own special seat for the toilet, which is fine because he has his own bathroom in the new house. He's gotten good at popping off his pants and diaper and hopping up there himself.

The only fiasco was when I let him out of my sight for ten minutes and then came upstairs to find him bottomless with a large grin on his face and some 'footprints' in the new carpet running from the bathroom down the hall and up the stairs to the master bedroom.

Which gave me the perfect excuse to unbox and set up the new carpet cleaner! :P

So far 7 days with only one poopy diaper and that happened when he was asleep.

He is also two, and quite terrible. We havent started plotting out how to get him into preschool next week to get rid of him for a few hours a day, but its getting close to that

We're loving the new neighborhood, we like the better selection of stores and restaurants, my wife likes her new job a lot, after much wrangling we got our Cobra set up until her new benefits kick in the month after next, we rolled over her pension and 403b accounts, and we've found all sorts of very fun stuff to do with toddlers in the area.

Now...all I gotta do is clean up, paint, recarpet and sell our old house in a dropping market. Some nutjob decided to help us with market values last week in the old neighborhood by announcing he planned to shoot up all the schools in town. I hope the cops are still kicking him. And one more reason to get the hell out of there!

http://www.appeal-democrat.com/onset...e=article.html

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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 05-05-2007, 01:56 PM   #228
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

Keep those updates coming-- I'd love to watch the homeowner's secret video of your first "Designed to Sell" open house!

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Most of our stuff is here and whirled up appropriately, except my tools are all over the garage in various boxes and on shelves here and there. I can never find what I'm looking for.
I think I saw them in the pictures you posted of your old safe. You haven't thrown it away already, have you?
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence
Old 05-06-2007, 11:47 AM   #229
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Re: Changing the balance of quality of life and financial independence

Sure have. I dropped it into the bottom of the 96 gallon trash can at the old house and covered it up with junk. Bet the trash guys eyes popped out when he set the arm on it and it registered about 250lbs as it picked it up.

The epilogue to that story was that after seeming reticent about sending me a set of new keys for the safe without massive and unnecessary paperwork, and claiming it might take up to 2 weeks, they sent me a set which arrived the next mail delivery day after I hacked the back off of it.

So finally someone was actually effective and speedy at rendering service, delivered far more than they claimed and at high speed. And it was not only useless, it annoyed me.

By the way, on that odd sprinkler repair, I was able to drill into what was left of the glued-and-screwed broken off post with a 3/4" spade bit and a steady hand, used the shop vac to suck out all the particles and as it turned out, about 4 gallons of water ("huh...why is the suction hose heaving like that...?"), then glued a regular piece of 1/2" pipe into the hole, cut off a 1" piece of 'sleeve' from the end of a piece of plastic pipe joiner, slipped that down and glued that over the junction, then glued a male fitting over the top of that whole mess. So I ended up with a pipe inside a pipe. No leaks. Although when I turned on the water, I realized that the very next fitting down the pipe about a foot away was improperly glued and ALSO leaking.

So I did the right thing and covered it with dirt, put a plastic junction box over the whole thing and decided that the extra gallon of water a day it'll leak when the valve is on is just a little extra irrigation.

And I found the coolest product on the face of the planet. The whole irrigation system is composed of those rainbird ratcheting sprinkler heads that are noisy and require almost constant maintenance or replacement. And the guy who owned the place before me went nutty with the landscaping bark and in some areas its 6" deeper than the top of the ratcheting popups, so they fill up with bark once a week and wont move. I really like the sealed gear drive units but wasnt thrilled with digging up 37 rainbird ratchets, probably breaking off some more glue-and-screws, and then burying all new gear drives.

So I find this Hunter PGP-ATR. You pull up the top of the rainbird by the cover, use the usual rainbird wrench to unscrew the 'guts' from the housing, use a shop vac to suck up any dirt, bark, etc, then this PGP-ATR screws right into the rainbird housing. Voila, its now a hunter sealed popup gear drive.

I was able to replace the 15 or so worst offenders in about 4 hours total. I wiped out the local commercial irrigation supply store of their entire supply of these, so i'll have to wait until they restock to do the rest. Bummer. :P
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Old 06-14-2013, 03:17 PM   #230
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The gate valves that used to be universally used in almost all home faucets/taps are terrible for not opening or closing after awhile. The newer quarter-turn ball valves valves are only a few bucks more and definitely worth the money whenever you get a chance to replace one of the old style gate or globe valves. Better flow rate, reliable opening and closing, etc. I've put them everywhere--shutoffs to the sinks and toilets, washer, hose bib, etc.
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Each valve is designed for a different purpose, and each has its advantages & drawbacks.

When an old gate valve (or throttle valve) is replaced by a new ball valve, the "new" feature (especially materials) is probably more significant than the type of valve. But that doesn't necessarily mean that it's better (or will last longer) than the valve it replaced.

Ball valves & gate valves can leak across their seats much more easily than throttle valves. (Admittedly leaking into the washing machine is a lot better than leaking on the floor.) When a throttle valve starts leaking, you have several options for tightening/torquing its parts to keep things under control until you can get a new one... not so many options with ball or gave valves. With some faucets I'd rather replace seats & gaskets any day than have to rip out the old valve and put in a new one.

. . .

So... buy the valve that's designed for its intended purpose. If you're going to be operating it a lot and it needs to adjust the rate of flow, buy a throttle valve. (It usually has a rubber seat to seal the flow path.) If you're going to be turning something "on" or "off" once in a while, no throttling required but "no leakage" is important, then I'm biased toward gate valves. If you're going to operate something very infrequently or if you need something that quickly slams shut, then use a ball valve.
Well, it has been six years, but there's no statute of limitation on eating crow. Nords was right (not that I doubted it after reading his post). The quarter-turn ball valve that I installed at an outside hose bib has failed, it started leaking across the seals. Since these types of valves can't be repaired by the homeowner, I had to replace it. I installed a conventional globe valve (with seals that can be replaced, seats than can be dressed, etc). The cause of failure of the old valve appears to have been rust on the "stainless" ball of the valve, which almost certainly destroyed the valve seals. The water also is very hard (this is installed before our softener), it is possible that played a role, too.
For hose bibs and other frequently-operated valves: Don't choose a quarter-turn valve.
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