What I Shed Today

lightening up a little at a time

swing blade repaired

on September 26, 2014

Sometimes I feel that if all my projects were placed in a single pile, they’d form a new peak climbers would have to bag. In fact they are largely in piles, which hinders reasonable progress toward getting them done. I mostly decide what to work on next by triage: what must be completed in order to accomplish what’s become urgent? Then I go digging.

Tonight I shed the project of re-attaching the blade to the swing blade handle. All it needed was a bolt and nut … but then, I haven’t needed the swing blade, so in its pile it remained. Tomorrow, however, I said I’d deliver it to the community garden so Melanie can begin whacking down the grass and weeds that got ahead of everyone this summer. (She’s on a quest to find her potatoes.)

So I went to my little drawers of odds and ends of fasteners and found a round head machine screw that matched the others on the tool. Then I said to myself, “Self, that may have worked loose in the first place because washers weren’t installed under these screws and nuts.” I’m not an engineer, but I am the son of one, and I like the feeling a washer provides, that the force is spread out a little more when the tension goes on a fastener. Washers are to screws and assemblies as a couple mugs of coffee are to me and my day … it all works better if they’re there. So I fished eight washers out of a drawer and put the swing blade back together better than the day it was made. I wire-brushed the rust off the cutting edges, too. I deserve my swing blade merit badge for this evening’s work.

By the way, if you don’t know this tool, I’m pleased to introduce you. It isn’t as serious as a scythe or kaiser blade, but it will take down grass that’s gotten too high for the mower without wearing you out as soon as they will. And compared to a string trimmer, it has a carbon toeprint … a pinkie toe, at that.

This is not the "sling blade" of the Billy Bob Thornton film of that name. That's a kaiser blade. As Karl Childers says, "Some folks call it a sling blade. I call it a kaiser blade."

This is not the “sling blade” of the Billy Bob Thornton film of that name. That’s a kaiser blade. As Karl Childers says, “Some folks call it a sling blade. I call it a kaiser blade.”

shedding style: repair
destination: Evergreen community garden

Comments welcome … do you have clutter that wouldn’t be if it didn’t lack a screw and nut? (Don’t forget the washers!)


2 responses to “swing blade repaired

  1. Anne Lene says:

    I might have some clothing that might need mending (which will not be done by me as I’m hopeless at it) and sometimes the occasional household thing that needs repair, but my tools, my tools are ALWAYS fixed immediately… I can’t stand it when they are “broken” ;-) (yeah I know, weird for a girl, but that’s just how I am… :-) )

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