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Sunday, October 14, 2018

59 Years Ago

This week in 1959, my dad brought the "new to him" 52 Mercury home. Wish I could say I remember the day but I was just a kid and a car was just a means of dad getting us from point a to point b. It took a few years for me to get hooked on flathead Fords and just anything with wheels in general.
That old Merc took us everywhere we needed to go for the next ten years. Seemed like a long time in those days but really ten years does not seem like much now.
By the fall of 69 the old flathead V8 became inpossible to start and it was relegated to retirement. After about ten years rest it got a new lease on life when my brother removed and rebuilt the engine. Then it had another even longer retirement until the fall of 2014 when I got inspired to see if it would still run. 30+ years of outdoor storage took their toll on the body but the old flathead was soon running smooth as ever. And I was hooked on flatheads all over again.
The original bill of sale.

Friday, October 12, 2018

That Was Close

I nearly had to go back to harvesting but right on cue, as the swaths were almost dry enough to sample, the clouds rolled in and light rain started. Turning to snow tonight they say. Why not? The swaths can't get any wetter. Every day gets a little shorter at this time of year. And with the unseasonable cold temps there is a very slow drying process happening. We need several good drying days to get the seed dry enough to store. I don't own a dryer or I'd be finished likely. Big dryers are expensive. Old small ones can take a lot of fixing and expensive repairs. And they all burn propane. Except the ones that burn natural gas. Carbon tax? Sorry folks, I'd really like to burn less fossil fuel (and money) but the only way to do that is to stop growing crops.
Picture from a few years ago in a more normal year of good weather.

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Hope Deferred

...maketh the heart sick. I think its an old biblical quotation (Arthur Nevard?) that I have used before here. But its very appropriate for our dismal harvest conditions over the past almost month. Last dry grain harvested here was September 11. There is a huge amount of money laying out in the fields in unharvested canola and not looking like much chance of it getting harvested this fall. And spring harvested canola is basically chicken feed and a salvage operation. Every day we look at the forecast with hope of improvement and all we get is cloud, fog, frost, snow or rain. And cold? Propane use is up 2 1/1 times normal in Sask. mainly due to grain dryers running.
In some ways it will be a relief when real winter snow settles in and we lose all hope, park the combines in the shed for winter and get on with other concerns.
Almost dry enough to cut some of the frozen dead grass around the machinery yesterday so I was doing a little of that with the JD lawn tractor at maximum height so it would not plug the mower. Cleaning up the mower later I managed to bash my head on the sharp angle iron of the welding table. Did not knock myself unconscious but oh man, the blood? Head wounds seem to bleed the worst but eventually with lots of cold water and paper towels I was left with just a large lump on the forehead. Seems like I need to wear a helmet whenever I leave the house.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

And Then It Rained Again

And now its snowing again. Combines safely parked in the shed out of the rain and snow. 1/3 of the crop laying out in the field getting soaked again. I could be shoveling snow before the day is over. October won't likely give us enough sun and heat to ever dry those swaths. Spring harvest? The wildlife will wreak havoc on the swaths. I'll be ok but for many this will be devastating. Things can always be worse but this is a bit depressing.
Oh well, head to the workshop and maybe turn on the furnace and work on the Merc. Or design a snow blower attachment for the combine.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

And Then It Snowed

Some video shot while I was hauling hay bales home from the hundred acre woods last week. The last really nice day before it snowed on the weekend. I still have one more trip to make but I'll wait til it warms up a little more. 5 miles on the road with an open tractor you don't want to be doing if its cold.

Friday, September 21, 2018

Carbon Tax

I'm familiar with the concept you have to spend money to make money in this farming business. But a news interview this morning suggested that by paying the liberal's proposed carbon tax, we will actually get more money back than what we paid in. ?? How is that possible? If I'm going to have to pay more for the fuel I burn farming, heating my home and transporting my product to market, how is that good for me?
The proposed carbon tax starting next January will be $20 a tonne. So many tonnes of carbon do I have? Or produce? Just how do they figure out this magical formula that will make some of us rich by spending our money on a carbon tax? It sounds like one of those schemes where you just hand over your money and trust the government to take care of it.
Link to the National Post article.
Carbon Tax Will Pay?

Monday, September 17, 2018

Speedometer switch final

Well its too wet to harvest and we will be shut down for the rest of September if the forecast is right. So a good time to do some upgrading on the Merc before the weather gets too cold. The speedometer quit working many years ago and was beyond my skills to repair. Turns out the 53 parts car has a fully functional speedometer. All I had to do was a transfer it from one car to the other without losing any parts or breaking anything. I managed to do that and now have a working speedometer. Also took a few miles off the car in the process. Its original speedometer had just over 82,000 miles on it. The replacement is something over 78,000.