Okay, enough already
03 April, 2006 - 19:24
You ever have one of those days where you just can't do anything right? Like filling your bowl with cereal and sitting down to eat and only then realizing you forgot the milk, so you get up and pour in the milk, sit back down and then find that you don't have a spoon... That was how my day was. Some higher force was intent upon tucking me back into bed. This is kind of a boring story but I have to tell it in order to be done with it. So kick back, pour your milk, and let's get on with it.
I am not always the most organized person. That being said my goal this morning was simply to go out to Rocky Branch and hang some gates that needed some hanging. In order to do this we had to be able to cut a 3/4 inch hole in a thickwalled 4 inch steel post. Need an acetylene cutting torch to do this. Really not such a big deal... as long as... you have a torch.
Actually, we do have such a torch. And in fact it had just been recently serviced. Doing good so far. Javier and I load the torch in the truck and I get all the other tools that I think we'll need for the day. It's about ten minutes to Rocky Branch. Just long enough to make you gently twitch if you forget something.
So we get there and unload the tank setup, which by the way, with an acetylene tank and an oxygen tank weighs about 180 lbs. I then take the nice shiny recently serviced torch out of the plastic bag that it came back in... and then see that the torch does not have the cutting head. Ah!! Whoops. I forgot that I took the head off when I sent the torch to be serviced. Guess I'll have to run back to the house and get the head from the box in the barn. Darn.
I wasn't that perturbed because believe it or not I forgot a few other things too. So back to the barn we go, find the cutting heads and other forgotten things and thirty minutes later we're back at Rocky Branch. Oh good. We get the cutting head on and then attach the hoses to the torch. Geeez, the threads on the oxygen hose sure are banged up. I guess that's okay. Let's turn on the gas. Wow, I guess that's not okay. Gas hisses out of the oxygen connection. Darn.
After ten minutes of reassuring ourselves that we do know how to screw something together we decide that the problem is indeed the damaged threads. Double darn.
Luckily we have another torch... back in the barn.
By this time we are in need of food. So we stop and pick up some lunch on the way home. Food is good at this emotionally critical juncture. So fed and revived we grab the other torch (after checking the threads) and head back to El Ranch.
This time I am sure we are ready. We have everything. Torch works. I mark the spots on the first post and begin cutting. Hmmm... it's cutting okay, I guess. Can't quite get the flame adjusted properly. It keeps jumping on me. Damn this molten steel sure is warm! Okay, let's stop for a moment and reassess this torch. Everything seems to be adjusted correctly. I just don't understand. "Look!" says Javier, and I follow his finger to the gas gauge it's pointing at. What?? Why is the gauge on zero? Oh my. We don't have any oxygen.
Guess what? Quitting time!! We'll try again tomorrow after I go see the gas man.