Assembling a Treadmill? Read the Instructions!

I bought a treadmill on Friday, after a finger wagging session with my wonderful doctor. For a number of reasons, walking outdoors (which I LOVE) is not an option most of the time. In fact, I had wanted a treadmill for a long time.

Things got silly, just trying to bring it home. We ended up with THREE vans: my van (known as the the Gramma van)  is filled with seats, a wheelchair (Mr Periwinkle — for Clive Cussler fans LOL) and a pink walker named Rosie. The dog van, and obvious choice has only front seats(so Mr. Dog can be transported) BUT the weather was 22 degrees, snowing, AND windy and the doors froze shut. Only the two front doors could be opened, and then only after much finger crossing and many warm, fuzzy thoughts!

Fortunately, my sister and her family were visiting and they had a smaller mini van. We moved stuff around, put down the rear seats and slid that puppy in!

My B-i-L and nephew carried the huge box up the porch steps and stood the box on its side in the front hall.

Saturday afternoon, I moved furniture in the extremely small TV room (I want to watch TV and walk, of course) and Jeffrey did some additional tweaking later that day. Luigi (all 175 or so pounds of him) was in seventh heaven because there was a large space in the middle of the room to arrange his bone collection (he has 7 or so beef bones to chew contemplatively) and to lie down.

That doggy joy was short lived however.

At about 1:30 PM on Sunday Jeffrey and I dragged the box into the TV room. We had to shut Mr. Dog out, so he headed to his nest in the living room, most unhappy.

With direction in hand, we unpacked the box and started assembly. With my building and drafting experience, I was Tech Director for the project. The directions were actually not too bad. They provided 1:1 scale outlines of the screws, bolts and washers, which was a wonderful help. We ended up with 2 extra parts, not mentioned in the instructions. Jeffrey wordlessly handed me the bag with the parts, the instructions, and went out to the front porch for a smoke! I had to find them in the exploded diagrams. They were cup holder related, btw.

It ended up taking us a bit over 2 1/2 hours, with no fights or arguments and only one laughing jag. Unfortunately, we were doing heavy lifting when the laughing jag started… All in all, it was a pretty easy process. It DOES take two people, both capable of lifting heavy things . I am really glad it didn’t need to happen on late on Christmas Eve.

The treadmill works well, the room is REALLY crowded and Mr. Dog is back to having limited space. ;-) I need to scooch down in my chair and look under Teddy’s console to see the TV, but I can live with that!

I got a ProForm 505 CST and I have named him, Teddy. I have already walked 1 1/2 miles and will be heading to the back of the house for lunch and a walk (on Teddy) as soon as I post this!

Yay, Teddy!


When I dream…
All my shelves are level and my walls are plumb…

I don’t know what it is, but I am sure all of you other Tool Geeks, can understand…

I get emotionally attached to some of my tools. I have my favorite straight blade screwdriver sitting in one of my pencil cups here on my desk. It went thru college, grad school, and many years of work as a designer, Technical Director, and union stage hand. It has a myriad of paint colors on the handle, because I used it to open paint cans when I worked as a scenic artist. I stole it from my dad. ;-) I didn’t like the way the Craftsman screwdrivers fit my hand, so this was the one I used most often…

In college, my parents bought me a used drafting table. it was one of the big ones — 60″– with four drawers. I spent a summer working to buy a cover, sliding straightedge and other related equipment. It has gone everywhere with me until now…

My Mom is coming home from the hospital (we hope) and needed to have a bedroom on the ground floor. My canvas painting studio was the obvious room. I had the drafting table and a large light table (home made but good LOL) and, one of them had to go. The light table is also a 60″ with drafting straightedge, so it can be used to tracing OR drafting. This meant that it is the obvious keeper.

So… the drafting table got sent to the EKU Theatre Department. It was very tough, watching it loaded into the van.

Jeffrey had unloaded its contents and I was fretting about where my proportional divider was — another tool to which I am emotionally attached. I have used the proportional divider for so many tasks over the years. Jeffrey was kind enough to find the proportional divider so now it is sitting in front of my on my desk, under the monitors. ;-)

The light table is now upstairs, and the downstairs room is almost ready for Mom, but I still keep thinking about that drafting table and all of my personal history directly related to it!


When I dream…
All my shelves are level and my walls are plumb…

Toilet Repairs Made Easy

We have a lovely new toilet in the recently renovated bathroom in our 100 year old house. I really appreciate how much better it works than the old one it replaced. I really like how it looks, as well. It is very sculptural and appeals to my designer’s eye.

That’s why I was surprised when I flushed it this morning and it sounded different. Now, let me take a moment here to say that while I am TOTALLY unmusical, I am attuned to sounds. In fact, I once diagnosed a loose bit in a router from across a scene shop… it just didn’t sound right.

The second time I flushed the toilet this morning (actually 5 minutes ago) it REALLY didn’t sound right! I quickly backtracked and saw that something was wrong… the water streaming across the floor was my first clue, and the face full of water I got when I lifted the tank lid made it definitive! In fact, I would say that the toilet practically blew up.

I ran upstairs to the laundry to get an older towel (the towels in the bathroom are the new ones that match the renovation) and handymen, if you aren’t particularly aware, using the NEW towels is not appreciated… not pointing fingers here, just offering a woman’s perspective. In this case, I carefully chose one of the green towels that doesn’t look good in the new bathroom, leaving the green towel that DOES look good.

As the water died down I looked in the tank and could see the problem. The narrow tube that brings the water into the tank was hanging loose and squirting water EVERYWHERE. Imagine crazed hose in silly video!

Looking around I surmised that the tube (actually, the *Bowl Refill Tube*) had come unclipped but I didn’t know WHAT it needed to be clipped TO. I suspected that it need to be clipped to the vertical tube with the water level mark (called the *Overflow Tube*, as I learned shortly) but I wasn’t sure. I also didn’t know whether it needed to be clipped for the water to flow INTO the overflow tube.

I headed online (Yes, I am an information junkie and I LOVE being able to research anything in the world so quickly).

I did a quick Google. It took me a couple of tries to word my query so that I got the right information. What I needed was a clear diagram showing the relationship of the bowl refill tube and the overflow tube.

I found a great one here:

I headed back into the bathroom and clipped the bowl refill tube onto the overflow tube, so that the water flowed INTO the overflow tube. Now that I have seen the side view, it is easy to understand how it all works and see that the water needs to flow into the overflow tube. In my defense, peering down into a water squirting maelstrom, it is not as obvious! LOL

Next, I put the lid back on the toilet and — pay attention here, handymen — I picked up the wet towel and carried it to the laundry room and CAREFULLY DRAPED it over the washing machine so it could dry out. Trust me on this, part of the Fix-it process is to PROPERLY disposing of the accoutrements used in the rescue!


When I dream…
All my shelves are level and my walls are plumb…

Makita LXFD01CW Big Savings While Supplies Last

This is a Gold Box sale so it is only available today and while supplies last! The savings are pretty good, so if the Makita LXFD01CW has been on your wishlist, this may be the time to grab it.

OK I have to admit…

As a tool geek, June is my favorite month and Father’s Day is my favorite holiday!

Why? you may ask… after all I am not a father (and actually, to be accurate, I am not a mom either! LOL)

This is my favorite time of year because of all of you wonderful men who ARE Dads… and to Father’s Day — with all of the WONDERFUL tools sales and deals! *VeryBigGrin*


When I dream…
All my shelves are level and my walls are plumb…


I know that you are familiar with this chair, even if you can’t ID it by name…

It is a Modern Classic and dates back to 1955.

While its appearance is simple, its construction methods are not. Incorporating technology such as pressed and formed plywood, here is a fascination video showing exactly HOW the Series 7 chair is made.

Of course, I wish that they had given a bit more detail about the actual construction methods used and a little less *ART and MUSIC*, but it is well worth watching, none the less.

Here is another video that I found with additional information. The plywood has a layer of cotton to give it additional strength… who’da thunk?

And if you are inspired afterward, check out the actual Series 7 Chair HERE

… and HERE


When I dream…
All my shelves are level and my walls are plumb…

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