Life at the end of the road

November 10, 2020

A simple job, aye right :-)

Filed under: animals, Land Rover, pigs — Tags: , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 9:02 am

I stopped giving ‘wee dug’ bones years ago cos Molly just doesn’t no when to stop, no matter how big the bone is she’ll gnaw away at it until it’s vanished, growling fiercely if you try and remove it from her vice like grip. Now I guess that’s quite normal behaviour and for a regular sized dug would be fine but she would literally chew away until she burst or at least chew away until she was the size of and as hard as a small barrel Smile She would then become constipated and be unable to pooh for days. Sure she would try but nothing would come out and when it did, after several days I’d marvel at the size of her deposit Smile Hope you’re no reading this over breakfast and if you are I apologise. Anyway the bone from Sunday’s lamb roast was just too good not to share with my faithful companion so much to her delight I gave it to her yesterday afternoon outside. At least then she’d not be eating it on my bed or sofa and I could remove it from her and put it in an outside bin before she went solid about the waist.

Apart from her vanishing with it, this seemed to go to plan and I manged to find her and distract her long enough to remove the bone by loosing off a few rounds with a shotgun. The one thing Molly loves above all else is the prospect of me shooting something, the very act of unlocking my gun cabinet will usually have her by my side whining in seconds. Obviously cos she was outdoors somewhere I actually had to fire the gun at some fictitious pigeon before for she came charging round the house whereupon I retraced her steps and deposited the remnants of Sunday dinner in the bin.

Trouble is wee dug has been getting up every couple of hours since and whining at the back door to go and look for her bone Sad smile Still, there’s some bits of meat left from my ‘left over’ feast last night that I can add into her dinner tonight, hopefully that’ll give me peace and a better night’s sleep. Not that I’d have had a great one anyway, I seldom do, especially the night before returning to work. I’m actually quite excited about the prospect, barring my fortnight in dry dock I’ve not worked for months, between broken ribs, docking and holidays I’ve not actually worked on the Raasay route since August!!! Not that that is unusual for the rest of the country with furlough and all but it does feel strange. Hope I can remember how to shutdown the ferry tonight then start her up in the morning Smile

Turned into an epic

I’ll not be ‘turning to’ until late afternoon right enough so I’ll have time to do a few more Land Rover, croft related tasks, the first of which will be to find Rodney, Bismarck and Tirpitz who spent the night ‘off the radar’ and never came home last night. Then I guess I’ll clear up the bomb site that is my workshop, yesterday’s simple task of getting my front lights working turning into ‘major surgery’.

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The day getting off to a fine if not greyish start which set the tone for the day so I didn’t feel so bad at being inside the shed all day working on my lights.

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The left hand side loom to the front I’d already joined to the original one yesterday so before refitting the headlamps I buffed up the Perspex lens with toothpaste. Basically cos that is all I could find, the best thing I’ve found for repairing glazed plastic headlamps is Duraglit  or Brasso

Duraglit Wadding Metal Cleaner and Polish 75g BRASSO 5601014015018 | eBay

but I had neither. You need something that is ever so slightly abrasive and I’ve found Duraglit ideal for removing tiny scratches on glasses, lenses and CD’s that jump. T cut also works but after hours of fruitlessly searching for mine (I have now just remembered where it is) I went and raided my bathroom for some toothpaste, it too is like a very fine abrasive paste and I’ve used it in the past for gently lapping in diving compressor valves. Sure you can actually buy special kits for refurbishing faded headlamps but I guess they’re just rebranded metal polish or something.

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All that went ‘damn fine splendid’ until I came to the drivers side where I couldn’t easily remove the old loom to join it to the new one. It was only a few inches short right enough and I could have just spliced in a new section but I’d planned to fit a new outer wing anyway. The old one had a dent in it which would have meant removing it to repair and I wanted to get rid of the side repeater lamp and it’s hole. Rather than fiddle about blind with spanners I just cut the wing off at the seam and removed the now easily accessible nuts and bolts with a socket and ratchet or grinder if they were seized, which one or two were.

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It was once the outer wing was removed that I noticed the large hole in the galvanised inner wing so I removed that with a view to repairing it. Another boodly epic cos you have to remove everything that is attached to it in the engine bay first. I gotta say, I was tempted to fit new ones. The later plastic ones are about £110 each but I figured I could effect a reasonable and invisible repair by welding them (chances are the left hand one is the same) then giving them a good painting prior to refitting.

Almost 9:00am now, found the wee piggy’s about half a mile away grubbing about in the birch wood looking very pleased to see me, or at least the feed bucket.

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Molly greeted them by trying to bite their ears and well all trundled back to the croft,

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the crows having stolen another three apples and the deer watching on with amusement Smile

November 8, 2020

Taking Calum for a walk :-)

Filed under: animals, daily doings, food, Trucks and plant — Tags: , , , — lifeattheendoftheroad @ 8:30 am

Not much in the way of stars this morning, black, mild and dry outside, no sign of yesterday’s spectacular star studded sky and numerous constellations many of which are only visible during the winter. Not that I know many of them but Orion and Pleiades are at least two that you only see at this time of year and both were showing off the previous evening. It was a ‘pure peach’ of a day on Saturday but before I realised just how lovely it was gonna be I spent some time on the Land Rover ‘spaghetti’.

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My goal being to get the instrument cluster and various warning lights working but as is often the case, something that seems relatively straight forward on the surface turned into an epic. Sure the gauges and their backlighting was straight forward enough but trying to get the ‘low fuel warning light’ to work sent my brain into a spin. Sure, it’s really easy, there are three wires on the sender unit in the tank, one goes to the warning light, one to the fuel gauge and one to earth. That’s what it shows in all three wiring diagrams that cover the three different looms in my Landy, so a simple task of utilising one of the 20 wires I’ve run through the chassis that is not already spoken for and then connecting it to the white and slate coloured wire that goes to the warning light. Not a chance, after much trawling of the Internet after giving up on all the wiring diagrams in the Haynes manual I discover these threads, ,

and this little PCB taped into the instrument cluster loom. This appears in no wiring diagrams or parts books and was buried in the wiring loom I had bought off eBay to replace the one lost by Tayside Land Rover. Whereas early Defenders use a simple three wire system later ones have three wires on the sender unit but the white and slate one that goes to the low fuel light does not actually go there!!! no, in fact it does not go anywhere!!! it just ends inside the loom around the bulkhead. The ‘low fuel warning light’ being controlled by this little secret module that turns on the light when the fuel gauge (green and black) wire reaches a certain resistance value that corresponds to a few litres of fuel in the tank. Sure, it’s a good idea, just wish they didn’t keep it secret Smile Luckily, it was a pure peach of a day so I gave up on the fuel light for a while and took Molly and Calum the Kubota over to Torran after giving him a good greasing, filling with fuel and loading his spare buckets into a trailer.

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I had some drains to clear and some exploration to do to find the course of a water pipe and had had enough of being stuck inside a shed on such a fine day.

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Surprisingly enough the pigs didn’t follow and after twenty minute of bouncing down the track at less than walking pace Molly abandoned me too.

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It is much further than the sign suggests Smile Only ten minutes walk right enough but a good half hour in the digger.

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Keenly watched by a golden eagle Molly and I walked back to get the buckets before I spent the afternoon fruitlessly trying to get my fuel light working. It being far too nice to go inside and consult the Internet. Something I should have done much earlier in the day, it would have saved me hours that I could have spent in the sunshine Smile

Anyway, it’s well after 8:00 now, the pigs have been fed and let out, Molly and I have done our exercises


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the ‘first breakfast’ is almost eaten and the second pot of coffee made. Time to go and attack my fuel light once more before I return inside to have ‘second breakfast’ and put my leg of lamb in the oven. No marinade today, methinks I’ll just rub some olive oil, garlic and rosemary over it then cook it ‘low and slow’. Thought it was beef when I dug it out the freezer and I’ve no mint sauce Sad smile

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