Driveway on the way

Today went smoothly, the people that are hauling fill for me will also be leveling it and doing minor landscaping, these guysare amazing. They are working hard and things are progressing at a reasonable rate. Today they shipped a loader over and built a driveway, it is made of clay and rock (nature’s concrete), it is very solid and nice to drive on. Wanda and I went out there to check it out, we are happy with it.

The driveway is two feet higher than the average field height, and about 18 feet wide.

It seems a bit like a dream, just a few weeks ago I was asking Wanda where we wanted the shop/house and where we should put the driveway. A few quick doodles on the site plan and a run with the mower to cut out the outline and it’s being done. I keep thinking, are we doing this right, will this look good when it’s built like this?  We just drew a turn around loop in the driveway by the garage and it’ll be in tomorrow; set in stone, and clay. Well it’s too late for second thoughts anyways, we may as well decide where we want the house to go and make a place for it as well.

Stuck truck

There’s a Kenworth stuck in our field. We hauled the first load in this morning and sunk the truck and trailer. It all goes to show that even when it’s dry in top, and you drive heavy things over the grass it doesn’t mean you can drive a trailer load of fill in there. It’s a good thing we have excellent well equipped neighbors. Our neighbor to the south has a International TD9 that pulled it out like nothing, I was amazed. The driver still managed to get a lot of fill hauled in today.

Happy birthday Jen

Happy birthday Jen. We went for dinner in Selkirk with Jen and Tre tonight at an Italian restaurant. They cooked with real cream in there sauces, it was rich, I can still feel it inside me. Sorry gallbladder.

Things are rather busy lately, We’ve been looking for landfill to build a driveway and build up an area under the shop. I bought a tractor today, it’s a Cockshutt 40, I think it’s a good deal. I got the tractor for 5 K$ and it comes with a snow blower, and a brush cutter.  The tractor is nice, it has a front end loader, a three point hitch, live PTO and live hydraulics.

I’ll add some pictures later (I don’t have any yet), as for now Wanda and I are going to watch a movie.

Oh, all the talk about putting high resolution and low resolution pictures will have to wait for a while, I tried some experimenting and it looks like I have a lot more to learn before I can implement it. For now I am going to change how the pictures load by using multiple progressive passes.

Trees on 44

Today we went to Lac Du Bonnet with Jen and Tre, we were going to pick some blueberries but we never got to picking any, it was a good trip though. We saw some large trees that were knocked down by the large storm that went through last Thursday. I am going to try to put pictures into the site in low resolution with a high resolution picture on mouse over (this means that the bad picture will turn to a good picture when you move your mouse over it). I am hoping that it will improve page loading times.

August long weekend 2007

Wanda and I went to Saskatchewan to visit her family. The trip was good, it was the first real trip that we took with the Jetta, the fuel mileage was excellent. The entire trip was aver 1200Km, and we used $65 in fuel. I have no complaints. We have been buying diesel fuel for about $0.83/Liter which is reasonable. I remember the first time I filled my truck with gas at $0.87/Liter that wasn’t reasonable, it’s funny the way we get used to the raised prices of things.

We stopped in Foam Lake for a burger and deep fried ice cream, the burger was good, the ice cream was not. I tried to feed the ice cream to a cat who wouldn’t eat any, and neither would I. I saw a elephant slide that is similar to the one Wanda hurt herself on when she was a kid, the difference is that this one is blue and that one was red.

Wanda and her parents made some borsht tight from the garden. I know it’s normal, but is seems kind of strange to me, they just picked vegetables cleaned and cut them then boiled them and it was made. It was a good meal, we’re still eating it.

Jetta rear end alignment

While checking the rear brakes on the Jetta, and flushing brake fluid I noticed that the rear tires were wearing on the inside (too much negative camber) and had worn the tire to the metal threads. It was time for a four wheel alignment. I had Wanda take it to a reputable shop for an alignment, they called me and told me that I would have to get a new rear axle because this one was bent and weakened beyond repair. After work we went to a local scrap yard where we purchased a used rear axle. It was a reasonable $145 after tax. As I set up the car to install the new axle I decided to do some measuring of the new axle as compared to the old one they were the same, our axle was not bent at all. Being a mechanic myself I have a good guess as to what went on, I think the kids that work at the reputable shop did not want to have to remove the rear wheel bearings and axle shafts a few times to shim the axle stubs so they said the axle was bent instead. The fix was to measure how far the wheels were out of alignment using a carpenters level and a tape measure, calculate what angle they were out using trigonometry and then calculate the shim required to correct it, it took a 0.034″ shim on the left and a 0.072″ on the right, it took an hour or two but I got both wheels bang on. The thing that gets me is that they could have fixed it (I even called before I brought it in and asked if they would do a job like that) but didn’t want to, and now I have an in store credit with a scrap yard that I never buy from. It just goes to show that you don’t need an expensive machine to align your car if you are willing to spend some time to do it yourself.