ScrapHappy October 2020: On the Rack

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Does what it says on the box

Of an evening at Chez Snail, there are a variety of entertainments to be enjoyed, with some coming out of a box rather than a bottle. One such amusement is Qwirkle, which in stark contrast to our other favoured game of Scrabble, has no interest in correct spelling whatsoever. It’s a great game, simple to understand and uses different parts of the brain compared to Scrabble. You have to match up coloured tiles for points. And points mean, er, very little really.

Unlike Scrabble, the game does not come with any type of tile holder (not a long-lost cousin of the lead singer of Slade) and it is this deficiency I address in this post.

I think it was a pen holder or something originally

I think it was a pen holder or something originally

It was one of those ScrapHappy coincidences, in fact. A few days before, the Snail had been clearing through her office/sewing room/SnailCave and had come across a piece of an old easel she used to use when teaching. Most of the rest of said easel was propping up the pipe feeding rainwater to one of our water butts. “Can you think of anything that this bit of metal might be useful for?” she asked, and I, in my customary way, had shrugged and put it in my office/workshop/studio/unholy-mess-of-a-room for safekeeping.

If this were a radio programme, there would be “time passing” music now.

Days pass and we are playing Qwirkle in the Limery, tiles balanced end-on, occasionally falling over (the tiles, not us. We sit down to play, it means the wine has less far to travel.). The Snail mentions about having tile racks and a lightbulb goes on over my head – well, it’s dark and the Snail has put the lights on. I head to my writing space/junk pile/guitar store and emerge with the piece from the old easel.

By chance, the tiles fit perfectly. A ScrapHappy post is born!

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About to get the chop


Figuring out some support

Figuring out some support

I cut the metal into two racks and used the rest to provide angled supports. As the tiles fitted exactly into the racks, there was no space for a nut and bolt to hold the supports on so I used superglue.

Unbelievably, there was almost no swearing during this phase of the project. No, really.

Two days later, one of the supports fell off, to absolutely no one’s surprise. There may have been a little swearing then. I used sugru to reattach it. Oddly, the other rack has remained in one piece.

After all that, time for a game of Qwirkle and a long drink!

oOo

These ScrapHappy posts are curated by Kate, who provides links to other (mostly sewing) ScrapHappy bloggers at Tall Tales from Chiconia on the fifteenth of every month. I have sneaked one or two non-fabric-based ScrapHappys in when no one was looking!

Lots of other happy scrappers contribute too, so check them out:

KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean,
Joanne, Jon (that’s me!), HayleyDawnGwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin, Vera, and Nanette

Categories: recycling, ScrapHappy, Sustainable Stuff | Tags: , , | 12 Comments

Mend it Monday: The Shed’s too wet without Roof

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Can’t Stand Losing You – well, any more of you…

Chez Snail’s shed was looking somewhat tatty in the roof department (a description that can equally be applied to me) and had, for the last year, been wetter and wetter inside after every drop of rain (which in Wales amounts to a fair few drops). It was time to put a new covering on before the next forecast monsoon was upon us…

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So Lousy – this side isn’t much better

The last time the Snails fixed the shed roof, it was with the felt stuff, and it basically covered the bits of the roof where the original felt was either peeling or missing, presumed in a garden about ten miles away. The Snail did some research on t’interweb and found this material called Coraline, which I thought meant it was made from a blend of snow globes and Neil Gaiman books, but in fact turned out to be corrugated bitumen sheets.

The stuff arrived and I sawed it into pieces of appropriate size. There are no pictures of this as the language filter on my camera deleted them. It turned out that if you cut bitumen sheeting with a saw, the blade becomes coated in the stuff. It also turned out that, following bitter complaining, the Snail arrived with a can of WD40 with which to clean the saw. There was less swearing after that. The following day, we both set about putting the sheets in place. You will notice that I was not the one on the roof. This is because, in an inclusive world, there is no earthly reason why anyone, regardless of age, sexuality or belief, should not be able to climb on a roof and hit it with a hammer.

Unless, like me, you’re a wuss when it comes to heights.

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Knocks Hand – actually, The Snail didn’t, keeping all her fingers safely out of harm’s way

It only took a sunny Sunday morning (about 3 hours, we started at 10a.m. so as not to completely destroy the lie-in of anyone in the vicinity) and a million nails with special waterproof caps to fit the eight sheets and four ridges in place.

Two days later, it started to pour with rain. We had nearly an inch of rain in 24 hours.

Inside the shed, it was drier than Jack Dee standing in the Sahara on a pile of silica gel.

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Invisible Pun (couldn’t think of any more)

oOo

Categories: gardening, repair | Tags: , , | 28 Comments

ScrapHappy September 2020: Illuminated Words

As with many of my ScrapHappy projects, this was a really simple idea that took ages to realise! As I have already mentioned on more than one occasion, my original Generation 3 Kindle became irreparable and was replaced by a Generation 2 model (earned through the medium of cheese-making). My Kindle cover has a built-in LED reading light, one that is powered off the Kindle itself – provided you use a Generation 3 model.

But if you could attach some some batteries…

My original plan was to use my non-patented bulldog clip battery holder (see here for the gory details) but with a smaller clip and smaller batteries. It was important that the cover still close once the batteries were fitted.

After three near misses between tiny button cells and my eyes, I decide to use slightly bigger batteries and some other holder. And then it hit me – and it wasn’t a button cell.

From one of the boxes of carefully stored bits and pieces came this – the circuit that was in a leaving card no less, one that made the sound of someone crying profusely every time it was opened**. 

Leaving Card Boo Hoo

I knew hanging on to this for a decade would pay off

I just needed to cut away the bits I didn’t need, reconfigure the holders so that there were in a straight line and that would be that…

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In pieces…

I wired them such that the holders didn’t obstruct the page-turn buttons, and hey presto!

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Checking they fit…

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And then there was… a set of functional light emitting diodes

oOo

* Plan is a grandiose word here, vague idea is more accurate.

** Clearly the one which has the sound of someone breathing a sigh of relief was sold out.

These ScrapHappy posts are curated by Kate, who provides links to other (mostly sewing) ScrapHappy bloggers at Tall Tales from Chiconia on the fifteenth of every month. I have sneaked one or two non-fabric-based ScrapHappys in when no one was looking!

Lots of other happy scrappers contribute too, so check them out:

KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Lynn, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean,
Joanne, Jon (that’s me!), HayleyDawnGwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin, Vera, and Nanette

Categories: recycling, ScrapHappy, Sustainable Stuff | Tags: , , | 13 Comments

Cores and Effect

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Wire or wool?

A while ago, I took this picture of cables at the Science museum (I know a photogenic subject when I see one*) and remarked how like hanks of wool they were. Well, have a look at this**:

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What’s all this then?

It reminds me of crocheted coasters as made by the Snail, and heaps of balls of wool:

In fact these are…drum roll… cross-sections of various types of electric cable.

Cool, huh?

Sometimes I wonder if I should be knitting or soldering!***

oOo

* Oh yeah?

** Picture from here. I first saw this on Twitter – the image is on Imgur but I can’t see who to credit. If it’s yours, let me know!

*** The answer is soldering.

Categories: General silliness | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

Mend It Monday: The Joy of Stick

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Spot the problem… there’s always one wire that comes off

I have started to sort my way through my electronics stash and came across this relic of computing – a cheap joystick. Being me, I wondered what the connections on the plug were and whether there was any damage/rust/icky stuff inside…

…and being me, I managed to break one of the wires when I took the bottom off*. Time to fire up the soldering iron! Fortunately, I was going to do some work on my next project (see September’s ScrapHappy for details, once it is, you know, September and actually written), so the iron was already warming.

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Job done, a job that would have been done quicker if I hadn’t spent some time with the joystick attached to the desk, while I pretended to fly a spaceship. Simple things and all that… perhaps I’ll keep it!

oOo

* This is old enough to mean that whoever manufactured it didn’t care about it being opened up and fixed, even if it was the opening up that precipitated the requirement for fixing. Ah, #righttorepair!

Categories: repair, Sustainable Stuff | Tags: , | 6 Comments

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