Monthly Archives: October 2011

This is really great stuff!

While I spend a lot of time with 19th and 20th Century materials and hardware, about a decade ago I ventured into a real 21st Century project when asked to special order completely synthetic casing to be used as trim outdoors on a commercial building louvre.

The piece you see in the video can be cut, drilled, nailed and painted just like ordinary wood or metal.

It is also completely rot and insect proof.

I had a chance to inspect the installation about two years ago and it is as good as new over a decade later!

Wow! I found the original project install picture in the archives! The keystone breaks are PVC and the radius connectors are flexible synthetic 4 1/2 inch “colonial style” exterior casing…


When I made this video, I hoped something really gross and icky would be caught on tape. Sadly, that was not the case. This dryer was actually in pretty good shape.

Since I already had the footage it seemed a good idea to remind people to keep the lint around their laundry room under control.

Over the years I have been periodically called to remove the odd dead critter clogging a dryer duct – birds, squirrels, the occasional oversize rat- you get the idea.

In the process I became acquainted with dryer lint- a quick burning fuzz that will pretty much accumulate anywhere inside a duct or even within the metal walls of the dryer itself and is extremely combustible.

When wet, lint clumps up and clogs the duct to cause overheating of the dryer rod; when dry, said lint floats into every conceivable nook and cranny available and is subject to instant ignition of the flammable kind.

It does not hurt to periodically inspect and clean the area in and around your dryer to prevent unexpected calamities.

For entertainment purposes only. Do not try this at home.

Remember, this video is a demonstration, not a tutorial. If you are unfamiliar with appliances or mechanical devices call a knowledgeable technician to assist you.

Wad Of Super Absorbent Material

Sooo, a few weeks ago it seemed we were up to our earlobes in 19th Century Technology here at the International Handyman Headquarters. CLICK LINK HERE

Recently, (last week especially) all roads seemed to lead to Pottyology. (Again!)

In addition to P-Traps so fragile (frag-gill-lee) they can be crushed with light pressure from a fingertip,CLICK LINK HERE we had one of our semi-annual drain clearing riots over at one of our
favorite ancient office buildings.

For your edumafication a photograph of the result when bad things happen to good toilets.

The porcelain fixture must be detached from the floor and a long metal cable inserted into the pipe underneath to clear out whatever ails the clogged plumbing.

In the picture you see a wad of super absorbent synthetic material easily purchased at pharmacies and supermarkets everywhere –which somehow traveled into the company toilet.

Now some of you may think it impossible for one little tiny wad of this stuff to clog a four inch drain.

You would be correct.

The one you see is the one that did not get away. There were at least half a dozen of her little buddies packed so tightly into a four inch pipe that the cable actually bored through and punctured this one in the middle of the clog.

Once the tension was broken the rest of the gang just scampered off into the city sewer lines.

Folks, the only manufactured material that should go into a toilet is bathroom tissue.


Anything else will just gunk up the works.