Saturday, February 28, 2009

A New Toy

It took a while but David and I were finally able to get our planets aligned and I was off to Langley to pick up the car.

Before I left I did the usual checks on the trailer. I realized that while the ramps work well when clamped down on a tire they were not designed to ride well when there was no car there. In order to get rid of the problem of the ramps flapping around in the breeze and breaking the hinges I came up with a simple solution.

I took two pieces of scrap 1 X 12 I from my lumber pile and cut them to the same length. Then I drilled a small starter hole in the center of each end and screwed in a ¼” lag screw, leaving about an inch sticking out. When the heads of the lag screw were cut off that produced a small metal pin. Then I drilled four holes; two twenty six inches from the hinges in the center of wheel tracks and two twenty six inches from the hinge in the center of the ramps.

When the boards were placed so that the pins went through the holes and the tie down straps pulled tight, the boards formed a brace the kept the ramps from moving. Worked like a champ.

No matter how you cut it the trip from LaPlace to Langley is a bone crusher. I had tried to arrange it out so that Rusty could make the trip with me but work schedules nixed that idea. Instead we swapped cars and he drove the Mercedes wagon and I borrowed his truck. I got off to a late start but forged ahead.

I had used Map quest to select a route to Langley. It worked. The instructions were easy to follow and I had no problems with them. I did not realized however that there were that many two lane roads left in the entire country. I think it took me over all of the ones remaining in Mississippi and Arkansas.

I arrived at David’s late in the afternoon on the second day.

David was just great and helped get the car loaded and strapped down. By the time we had chatted a bit and got everything loaded up it was well after dark and the ice storm warnings were becoming bothersome. The temperature in Oklahoma was in the twenty’s. Way too cold for this hot house flower.

David suggested a different route going back which turned out to be wonderful. It was all multilane highway and much easier on the driver than the trip up. I might have been a few miles longer but the comfort made it well worth while.

So, three audio books and 1500 miles of driving and I was back home with a new project to work on.