Sunday, August 4, 2013

Dumpy Quits

Yesterday started out fine.   I took Pam to Gloversville to set up for Railfest, a fine community event held annually to raise money for charity.  Every year, a different charity is chosen.  I was part of the organizational committee of the first Railfest held, I think, in 2004 and served as its first treasurer.

I helped Pam set up her canopy and then hied myself off to buy ten gallons of diesel for Casey the Backhoe.

When I arrived at the property (needs a name), my motorcycle was laying on its side as well as Earl's small trailer.  A big wind?  No.  The beach umbrella is still upright.   I noticed that a tire was missing from the trailer.  Vandals?  No, that tire was flat.  Who would steal a flat tire.  Earl must have taken it to fix it.  But what of the motorcycle?  The kickstand didn't sink in the dirt because it fell the opposite way.  All I can figure is that it was pushed over by a curious bear.  A biker bear?

Earl and I got Dumpy unstuck from the mud in short order and I parked him up by the foundation for Earl to fill with the backhoe.  While he did that, I plowed the land.  Not with a bottom plow, but with the back blade, which is like a snow plow but mounts on the back of the tractor.  I angled it and as I made each pass, the blade knocked down the high spots and filled in the low, while pushing the rocks off to the side like it was snow.

Earl waved me over.  Dumpy was full.  I hopped off the tractor, jumped in Dumpy and dumped him.  As I backed him up the hill to the foundation hole, he stalled.  I started him up and he idled rough and stalled.  He will only idle with the choke out and any attempt to give him gas stalls him.  We sprayed two cans of carburetor cleaner into him to not much avail.

Pam and I had dinner arrangements with friends and I needed to leave around 4 PM.

"Going out for dinner?  You don't need that shit.  You can eat home.  You need to get working over here if you're going to get anything done.", said Earl.

"We have a couple of weeks to get the hole dug.  We have time."

"You don't have as much time as you think you do."

Earl is right, of course.  I need to get cracking, but outside forces are delaying us for the most part.  Now, it's plans from the architect.  Since John the Architect doesn't design post and beam houses, we're hiring a new architect who specializes in them, Brad the Post and Beam Specialist Architect.

We discussed what the problem might be.  Carburetor?  Plugs?  I don't know if it has a solid state ignition or not, but points?  I'll have to sleep on it.  And I had to leave Earl in mid-victory beer.

I fetched Pam and we hied ourselves to Lake Pleasant, which is appropriately named, for our dinner date with friends.  What a beautiful spot right on the lake.  It's a "camp" that's been in Jack and Connie's family for many many years, modernized appropriately but keeping the rustic charm of an Adirondack retreat.   Connie gave us a tour, and Pam made notes of many things she'd like to do in our Unabomber Cabin.  Old friends Kate and Chuck were also there.  Chuck is becoming quite the chef in his retirement, preparing a fine dinner of lamb.  After dinner, we sat out on the deck by the lake and enjoyed the neighbor's fireworks.   The stars were spectacular, the Adirondacks being relatively free of light pollution, and the Milky Way as vivid.  It was tough to leave, but we were both tired.  And cold.   Fall is on the way up here.

I got out of bed at 6 AM this morning at the little voice in my head shouted "IT'S CRUD IN THE FUEL TANK, STUPID!"  Ah!  That could be it!  I had a 1930 Pontiac with a rusty fuel tank.  It would run great and then sputter and die.  I kept a wrench in the car to remove the fuel line, blow it out, reconnect it and it would run fine until the next time.   I'll bet that's it.  I'll have to blow out the fuel line and check the fuel filter this morning.

I read several webpages each morning before writing the blog to see what's happening, including the small local newspaper the Leader-Herald.  There, on the front page, is the feature story about Railfest.  They interviewed Pam, but also stuck my name in the article.  Why, I don't know.  I wasn't at Railfest, and my apartment hadn't burned down.

1 comment:

  1. So did Pam buy the rolltop desk? The way you're losing weight you'll fit in it soon!!!