Monthly Archives: October 2009


Classic Old Time Attic Service Scuttle

Normally, I only accept service calls from rental property tenants when I have an established relationship with the property manager or owner.

However, this past weekend brought a call from a single mother who had a justifiable concern about the security of her apartment through the attic equipment service scuttle.
Read More


Small parts finaglery to connect toilet and valve

Pottyology-of or dealing with the repair and maintenance of potties (toilets) (commodes).

So one day my phone rings and the client informs me he has managed to acquire a genuine European Toilet and transport same back to these United States.

In a time before flexible supply tubes were widely available and unaware the dimensions of American plumbing were completely incompatible with European fixtures he had already sent one plumber foolish enough to accept the challenge screaming madly off into the night

He said, and I quote “I sense some difficulty in the installation”.

Needless to say, I certainly could not resist this invitation to personally witness mayhem “in situ”, so I hopped in the truck and drove out to take a look.

Read More

Basic Metal Swing Set

Basic Metal Swing Set

In the beginning the world was filled with basic metal swing sets. (Okay, in the beginning of the beginning the backyard playground was a tire suspended by a rope from a tree limb! A little before my time!)


And, of course, in 1937 the backyard playset was built from scratch with lumber from the sawmill and threaded pipe from the hardware store.

Anyway, the metal playground swing was a true kit with factory finished steel tubes and predrilled holes and hardware to assemble it all.

Then came the wood swing set with plastic accessory kits which included instructions for the assembly of the swing set from stock lumber to which the plastic accessories could be attached.


Early in the 1980’s Lowes Lumberyard came up with a unique marketing idea called the Treeless Treehouse. Crude by today’s standards this was a backyard playhouse designed to be built by Dad over the weekend.

Read More