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Home Repair and Maintenance


When we moved into our house, there was a wood stove insert in the downstair fireplace. But it was missing the power cord for the blower. So now that we are finally getting around to getting it going, I am trying to hunt down a power cord for it. It’s got a weird connector.
Gibraltar wood stove power connector for blower
If I can’t find one, I will either replace the little connector on the blower side, or just hardwire a power cord to the blower. I checked Home Depot, but they weren’t very helpful. The guy at the customer service desk sent me back to electrical, and after waiting for about 15 minutes for the HD electrical guy to finish helping a single customer (he was still with the customer when I left), I finally gave up and left. They need other people or something. I will check Radio Shack, and maybe some wood stove stores tommorrow. I also might check an appliance store.

I had been watch an auction for an old Craftsman 4 1/8 inch jointer (model # 149.21871) on eBay. It is local so I can pick it up and save shipping. The price got close to my bidding limit. It is an older model, but looks pretty solid. It doesn’t come with a stand, so I will have to make one. I haven’t used a jointer since junior high school wood shop. I figure I can use this for playing around laminating some different types of woods. Maybe I will make some laminated martial arts weapons.
I was also watching a 14″ bandsaw, but was not familiar with the brand. I am keeping an eye out on another 14″ bandsaw that is a well known brand. I expect it to go high in price. I am not sure at this point how much I am willing to bid. I got a few more days to decide though.

Rand Lathe Duplicator
I have been watching an auction for a Rand lathe duplicator on ebay. It looks similar to the $170 duplicator sold by Harbor Freight. I set up a snipe bid for a little over $50, and when I got home from my Aikido class, I saw that I had won the auction for a little over $40. The shipping $22 something. The duplicator apparently had been returned with a hole that had not been threaded, and a chipped cutting tool. Hopefully there is nothing else wrong with it. I have a nice Craftsman tap set, and can tap the hole with the needed threads as long as they are standard. I don’t have a metric set, but I can always pick one up if I need to. Can’t have too many tools. Depending on how badly, and where the tool is chipped, it may still be usable, but if not I have a 3/8 inch Delta cutting tool, and some 1/4 inch blanks. I might be able to repair the tool my slow speed grinder.
I visited Harbor Freight Tools today. That place is cool. I am a bit leary on some of the power tools. They look pretty cheap. Actually most of the stuff looks cheap, but depending on what you are looking for, the stuff may work for what you are doing. I picked up a sledge hammer, and a wood splitting wedge. It is raining today, but hopefully tommorrow, we will haul some wood that I cut last year up the hill, and at some point I can split some wood. So when we get our fireplace cleaned and inspected, we can have some fires, and heat the house some using wood. Maybe that will cut down on our electric bills. I just hope there is nothing wrong with the fireplace. If there is, we will deal with it.
I also picked up some C-clamps. I have been goofing with my lathe. I took a 2×4 and glued it together, and weighted it down with weights to dry. But parts of the boards didn’t get adequately pressed together. So I bought the C clamps, and will try another one, and press the boards together, and hopefully have better results. The first boards I glued together, I have been turning into a baseball bat. Just for fun. It is the wrong kind of wood for a baseball bat…too soft. And since the boards have an open seam in a couple spots, that makes it all the more unuseable. But I am getting better with the tools, and the lathe. I may try to make a bed post with the next couple pieces I glue together.

I got my cutting tool on Monday. Tonight I got a chance to hook it up to the guide piece. It did better on the cheap wood that I was playing with. I then tried to use it on a piece of maple, but every time, it would just dig into the maple, and stick. Very ugly! Back to the drawing board!

Dewalt DW703 Heavy Duty 10 inch Compound Miter Saw

Dewalt DW703 Heavy Duty 10″ Compound Miter Saw


SUMMARY: Kicks butt over a miter box!

I have been using a miter box, but lets face it, a miter box sucks! I needed to cut dowels with nearly perfectly flat ends. The miter box wasn’t working worth a snot. The regular saw that came with it did a lousy job. I switched over, and started using a hacksaw which gave me cleaner cuts, but still not straight. I was looking at the Delta unit which was half the cost, but after reading reviews, I decided to spend a little more…okay twice as much, and get a better tool. I love this thing! Lots of power, and nice clean cuts. If I lower the saw slowly, I get reasonbly clean cuts with the stock blade. Love it, and I am sure I am going to get a ton of use out it! GOTTA LOVE DEWALT TOOLS!
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