Friday, July 04, 2014

Life saved... Drive shafts are mindblowingly awesome!

Happy 4th of July!

"So there I was," in the passenger seat of my GF's Miata rolling home after wings and an ordering mistake that left me on the far end of buzzing (some might call it drunk)...  Anyways, we are driving home and about two blocks from our house we spot a little sparrow (or maybe a finch) hyperventilating in the middle of the road.  We are on Old Scenic 98.  It is the road right along the Gulf of Mexico so on the 4th of July it is pretty much the busiest road on earth.  That little bird was right there in the lane basically lined up to be hit with tires.  Lindsay pulls up next to the little bird, stops the car, opens the door and grabs the little bird and runs off toward the side of the road.  I am sitting there, the world is happy and blurry, my GF is off saving the life of a little bird... when I look at the rear veiw mirror... and pretty much there was about a billion cars all backed up behind us.  This is a two lane road.  One lane for each direction. There was a backup about two miles to the east behind this miata with the door open, right in the middle of the road.

In super slow motion, the Sheriff rolls up from the opposite direction.  He is also stuck in traffic, just in the opposite direction.  He looks at me with a face that says, "What the fuck dude?  You are going to sit there and block traffic today on this road, in this place, at this time, in my county?"  (he was very eloquent with his facial expressions...)  Either way, I knew he wanted an answer even though he didn't ask a question.  Though by this time, he had turned on his lights.  I shout across the traffic... "There was an injured bird in the road, my GF is saving him right now!"

This seemed to satisfy the sheriff to the point he turned off his lights and started rolling slowly away.

Lindsay got into the car, sweared at me for talking to the cop... and started driving the last two blocks home.  Over the course of these two blocks she went from happily satisfied that she had helped this little bird to she hadn't done enough and the bird was probably dehydrated and going to die imidiately and it needed to be collected, brought home, and taken to a shelter.  Despite what I thought was logical arguments that the bird was either a goner anyways, or you saved it's life already... she was still quite distraught about the little bird.

I decided "ok, I''ll go bring back the bird and we can take him to the vet."  So when we got home, I got a shoe box out, Lindsay filled up a glass of water for him... (I pulled out some tuber-ware and filled that with water and left the glass of water.)  The plan was, I'll go find the injured bird, put him in the box, give him some water if he wants... then when I get him home we will take him to the vet or the wild life rehabilitation center that she is a volunteer at.

(she had to get ready for work)

I walk back to the tree where she left the bird.  When I got there, the bird scampers away... I turn to get the shoe box to put him.  When I turn back I can't find him.

Some old couple start shouting at me from the balcony of a condo, "Hey, that baby bird flew away!"

After some shouty discussion, it was ascertained that the bird was safe up in a tree, they saw my GF running across the road and putting the bird in the grass under the tree, but now it flew away.

Good enough for me...  Good work Lindsay!

Also, the old blue buick has been having some vibration problems for the last year or so.  I have been ignoring it because it didn't seem to much life threatening.  Well it has gotten worse in the last few months and a few days ago I desided it was to scary to drive the buick to work anymore.

Not to get to deep into the details, there is a magical spring with a ball bearing in my drive shaft.  When they get worn out, the buick shakes enough to change radio stations on you.  That was where I was.

The AMATEUR SOPHIST always complains that i don't have any tools...I always disagree, but if I am honest, I basically have a welder and a few rocks as all of my tools.

So there I was, looking in the repair manual and it tells me that I need a bench vise to press the U-joints out of the drive shaft. As crazy as it is, I have never owned a bench vise.  So, I decide to take this opportunity to buy a new tool.  Still cheaper than taking it to a shop.

So I buy a bench vise.

As I am rebuilding this driveshaft, I discover that it is much easier to just pound out the U-joints out rather than press them out with the vise. So... imagine me, in the garage... dimly lit like a cave, pounding on my driveshaft with a mini sledge hammer.  (I would have used a bone or rock, but it is florida and the bones rot to fast and there are no rocks here.)

Turns out bench vises are still useless.  I wasted my money.  I should always stick to my favorite tools.  Hammers and rocks!

Also, in my trying to figure out how to rebuild my drive shaft, I watched the following video.  I know it might be a little nerdy, but think about the fact that shafts that are solidly coupled can spin at different speeds at the same time!

Yea... I am right with you... I can't wait till I can smoke pot and watch old high school shop instructional videos too!

Until then... gin.

So, I guess what I am getting at is that, "Lindsay doesn't give a fuck, she will inconvenience the shit out of thousands of people for a swallow... and driveshafts are much more complicated than one would expect."

Also... I have the buick drive shaft back together and is is so smooth... (I forgot how smooth the buick electra can be...)  basically driving the buick is like drinking Malibu Rum with a straw looking at a freshly exfoliated stripper's ass.

That's right... the Buick Electra is that smooth!