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Old 05-17-2016, 10:54 AM   #463
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Originally Posted by pmclemore View Post
Place a salt shaker on the outside window sill. He'll suspect a trap and go elsewhere.

Pat
How about a pepper shaker? I don't get why a salt shaker would scare a bird? But the area is on the second story above the walk-out basement, so it isn't so easy placing anything there.

He has been hitting the window less and this morning I saw two birds sitting on the roof above the area. I sprayed them with the hose and they flew away. Maybe the attacker has found a mate and is mostly interested in being a father, over and over again. We often have large black birds sitting on the roof and then riding the thermals. They pair off and we don't know what they are. They are as big as ravens, but I never see ravens pairing. Crows, slightly smaller, usually are in larger groups. I looked in a Colorado bird book and couldn't find the large birds. Our hope is the large birds, whatever they are, like to eat small birds and they return soon.

Countertops #2 and #3 are built and have received a coat of Danish oil. Have to cut and mill wood for the next one, but making granola now. I have been working long, long days at this and my ancient body hurts a lot. I guess the only way to stop hurting is to die; I'll take the hurt.

Ouray in 5 days.

Gene
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Old 05-17-2016, 11:27 AM   #464
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Ever heard of this for birds? We tried it on our windows for a few years, with a mixed verdict. Might be worth a look.

http://windowalert.com/
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Old 05-19-2016, 12:02 PM   #465
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Thanks young'. We'll check it out. The bird is less bothersome the last few days, so ignoring it is easy to do.

Countertops are progressing nicely. I have figured out just how many strips I can glue without the glue drying too much (3) and not having to clamp as much. Clamping and unclamping, ad infinitum, takes a lot of time and wears out my old hands and wrists. So I glue 3, clamp, glue another 3, clamp to original 3 and so on. Much faster.

All was going well yesterday afternoon and I thought I'd finish earlier than I thought. I put the finished countertop pieces on scrap 1x4 with drywall screws driven through. The piece rests on the screw tips and air can circulate and allow things to dry faster. It is also easier to coat the sides, front and back. Note also the shop floor was painted with epoxy paint so it is very smooth. On top of that I have anti-fatigue mats the previous owner left (thanks, Frank). I was carrying the newly glued piece to where I was going to put a coat of Danish oil on it. I got to where I needed to be and the anti-fatigue mat started slipping on the smooth floor, I started to fall, put out my left hand while still holding on side of the 30-40 pound countertop and saw one of the screws pointing right at my thumb. It all gets hazy then, but the countertop hit the edge of the workbench and continued to the floor. The puncture wound was not too deep, but bleeding like thumbs do. The countertop was in 3 pieces on the floor.

I went calmly to get a band aid (after screaming @%*&%@ plus more of the same and "Owww!") and came back to see the damage. Just then Barb showed up and was trying to figure out if I was mortally wounded. The board had separated where the most recent glue joint was plus the one next to it, so I had two large pieces and one strip. Some wood had started to splinter but was still attached.

Looked fixable, so I got out the glue, the glue brush (just learned recently of glue brushs, makes it much easier) and clamps that I had just put away. Lots of glue, especially where the wood was splintered, lots of clamps in all directions and after unclamping and checking, everything back in place except for one small hole. I filled it with sawdust and glue, reclamped. Resanded. Checked again after a while, saw the splinters were all healed (remove clamps from that before glue completely sets or you have a new problem). Let it cure for another period of time and it looks fine. If you knew what happened, you can look and see a problem faintly. I muttered a lot, was angry with myself for slipping and frustrated because I added an hour and half to work time and I was really ready to crash. Got a coat of polyurethane on pieces 2 and 3 and Danish oil on the barely damaged piece.

I'm doing this whole thing better with each one—they come out flat, glued faster, places where there's a slight space between strips are fewer (I'm learning the nuances of the planer and jointer) and the urethane is going on smoother with a brand new polyurethane brush. Looks like I'll have all the countertops ready for the stove installation at the beginning of June.

So, I'll really need the rest we will take in Ouray. Opened the trailer and put some clothes inside. Next, put some water in the tank and load up the truck. Put more coats of polyurethane on countertops. Wash house windows. Help Barb get ready for guest, trip and party after we get home. Note that crazy people remodel the kitchen, have a guest, take a trip and then a few days later have a party and continue remodeling all within several weeks. When I had pneumonia, I could hardly stand sitting around. I guess work is my fate, but now I don't get paid for it.

We haven't had snow for couple weeks, but lots of rain. Staying cool most days, but getting warm enough to start the swamp cooler. Ouray should be pleasantly cool as it is higher than here—it is about 7,800', 900' more than our house, and, thus 2 or 3 degrees cooler, maybe less because the box canyon means early and late parts of the day get no direct sunlight. Thinking about taking a drive south on US 550 toward Silverton or somewhere. Maybe naps will be good too.

Gene
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Old 05-21-2016, 12:47 PM   #466
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Why, Gene, - everyone knows that you catch birds by putting salt on their tails!

Perhaps the birds here back East are just used to doing things the traditional way.

Pat
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Old 05-24-2016, 04:32 PM   #467
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We bought the decals youngpeck suggested at Bird's Unlimited (cost 25% more than online). The bird seemed to ignore them and just attack 18" away. But less attacking and we aren't home, so all is well.

Our friend visited Sat. and we spent a good evening catching up, having a birthday pizza for Barb and our traditional falling asleep watching SNL. Sunday meant driving to Ouray and staying at the KOA. Big trees, lush vegetation in this valley, make it a welcome change from the desert. They clustered about 5 trailers in one spot, but the rest of the CG looks pretty empty.

Sat. night was a very good meal at the BonTon in Ouray. Sunday we had a good breakfast at Kate's in Ridgway, soaking in the Orvis hot spring and then the mandatory nap. Better food experiences here than in Moab. Monday night we had a fire featuring scrap wood from a year's worth of remodeling. Had dinner at Buen Tiempo yesterday evening—workmanlike food—tastes ok, lacks imagination, does the job. Table salsa tasted like it came out of big can. There's more wood for tonight and maybe tomorrow.

Friend Kevin left this morning, so we slept even later than usual. The weather is cool and pleasant, but it may go down to 31˚ tonight. The sewer connection is MH height and I have about 12' of below grade sewer line and don't want it to freeze. Probably wouldn't, but I don't want to think (i.e., worry) about it.

We decided to go to Silverton today. It is a small mining town (now a tourist town) on the way to Durango. There are three major passes on the road (US 550), but only Red Mountain Pass (11,018') to Silverton. From Ouray, the road climbs quickly in a series of switchbacks and then follows the Uncompaghre River south. You are a hundred feet, more of less, and straight down, above the river, there are no guardrails and not a lot of shoulder either. That goes on for a couple of miles, but depending on your feelings about guardrails and heights, it can seem like a lot of miles. There's a tunnel and a snow shed—still had some snow on it today. Eventually you cross a high flat valley and then get to the main area for mining from the late 19th century until the early 1980's. There were incredibly rich deposits of silver. Some of the old mines have been sealed, some restoration has occurred and there are old workings to look at. Because of minerals released by mining, the creeks and rivers run red from iron oxide and there are other things like arsenic in the water. Before mining, the water ran clear and clean. The companies left and the public ends of paying for the cleanup.

After that flat valley, another series of switchbacks takes you to the top of Red Mountain Pass and just beyond the summit, we had to stop. "Blasting, turn off radios, phones". We waited about a quarter hour and with no idea how much longer, we turned around. Blasting can take 20 minutes or more than an hour, and then we would have to face it coming the other way. When we got back to the CG we heard it took 15-20 minutes each way on Sunday, so worse today probably.

But it was a pretty excursion, though only about 15 miles. Lots of photos.

1. The first countertop I built. Subway tile will be installed around and make less obvious the different color of oak on the sides.

2. This is what you see as you approach Ouray. They like to call the town the Switzerland of America.

3. Ouray is very hilly and anyone who lives here will have strong legs or won't get around much. Lots of Victorian era buildings, some with Swiss modifications unknown when the town was young. This was where some the mine execs lived. They had the money to build elegant homes. This is the south half of the business district. A series of switchbacks starts at the end of the main drag.

4. On the way up the switchbacks, this is what you see from time to time—the peaks of the San Juan Mountains.

Gene
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Old 05-24-2016, 04:47 PM   #468
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1. As you drive along the road with the deadly drop off, you come to a tunnel. They do a good job keeping this road open in the winter. How would you like to drive a plow along here in a blizzard? I think they've only lost one plow since the road opened long ago.

2. The snow shed. This is a frequent avalanche chute and this concrete structure keeps the road open. They have used snow sheds, usually wooden, on railroads across the Rockies for well over a century.

3. This is where the road crosses a wide, flat valley. The valley is very wet this time of year and the upper reaches of the river meander through the meadows.

4. A mine building for a hoist in the Red Mountain Mining District. Silver ore was so prolific here there were scores of mines operating off and on depending on the price of silver.
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Old 05-24-2016, 05:08 PM   #469
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And more:

1. The executives who had to be close to the mine—engineers, assayer, superintendent, would have houses for the family near the mine. The miners would be housed in dorms and eat at a communal dining hall. If there were local owners, their houses would be in a nearby town. Since there was mining here until the 1980's, this building may have been a house or office before things shut down.

2. This track went into a main portal for a 100 mile network of drifts and tunnels that extended under the mountains to Telluride and close to Ouray. In the distance the red blotches are dirt and rocks from many mine portals. There were 6 towns in this area at one time, but none of them still exist. A railroad from Silverton shipped ore out (no track made it to Ouray to the north) and eventually another railroad (now a tourist railroad) brought ore to Durango.

3. Mountains!

4. The road back sans guardrails. It looks worse up close, but all those photos were too blurry.

Gene
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Old 05-24-2016, 07:13 PM   #470
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Gene, Picture 4 of the mine building is very quaint.
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Old 05-24-2016, 10:21 PM   #471
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Gene, Picture 4 of the mine building is very quaint.
I lucked out on that one—the snow and light were great and some massaging with the computer and I'm a professional, or just lucky.

On this trip we hit 60,000 miles on the trailer. I thought we were around 55,000, but forgot to add in last year's trip to Vancouver Is.

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Old 05-25-2016, 07:50 AM   #472
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Hi Gene,
We like the Adobe Inn in Ridgway.

On the subject of birds, we have used the "Scary Eye Balloons" with success. Available on Amazon. We were having a problem with birds making mud nests under the eaves of the roof. We hung the balloons and they never came back. Moved over to a neighbors, who called me asking where to buy the balloons, which he then put up the next season.



In fact, we still have one hanging under a deck to keep the birds out.
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Old 05-25-2016, 02:01 PM   #473
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Steamy, I'll try the scary eye as soon as I can put together an Amazon order. Thanks. A shotgun blast through the window may be the most effective idea, though Ken will have to come down here and replace the window for me.

Wee went out to Kate's Place again for breakfast and then took a ride up to the Dallas Divide. It is a low pass, just under 9,000, but some pretty views, a ride alongside Ralph Lauren's enormous estate and then back to Ridgway and a stop at Lupita's Bizzare Bazaar. The owner is not named Lupita, but the name was creation of Susan and her friends drinking and trying to think of a name for the store she was about to open. Lupita's it was and now her daughter has Lupita 2 in Palisade, Colo. Lots of weird stuff and some normal gifts in her shop. I'm not sure the "Bizarre Bazaar" part was the product of the same drinking event.

Ridgway has a lot of infrastructure work this year. There is a new public parking lot on an empty lot. One of the main side streets is being paved and other sidewalk and street work is going on.

Photos:

1. A view towards the state highway. Most of the town streets are dirt, but paving is starting on one street. The "business district" stretches over to Clinton St., one block north of the state highway. The 1915 Sherbino building is now a brewery and up Clinton are a new cafe, an old theater and newly remodeling storefronts waiting for a lessee.

2. Kate's Place, once named Sandy's when we started going there, is in a well kept building with another business in the back, outdoor seating and a brand new concrete sidewalk.

3. The highway west to the Dallas Divide and eventually Telluride, climbs up to a series of flat areas with farms, and it isn't too long before you get mountain views. There was a lot of snow in the past month, so the snow caps are big, but everything below 8,000' is clear.

4. A view south from just below the summit of the Dallas Divide.

Gene
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Old 05-25-2016, 03:20 PM   #474
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The counter top looks nice and flat. Is it oak? I think you said you were starting with the rough lumber?
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Old 05-25-2016, 06:44 PM   #475
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Bill, Yes, it is good quality, rough cut red oak. Each strip averages 1 1/8" deep (I was using 5/4 lumber). So planing removed about 1/8" off two sides. Different sized pieces used for side grain look better if they are all a little different. Although most of the side grain was a straight grain, some had beautiful figure in it and I tried to have the pieces like that in the front and middle. Since it is hard for me to see just how the grain will come out before I finish the piece with oil and polyurethane, I have had some pleasant surprises and one piece has such wonderful grain it could be hung on a wall as art. I guess I'm an accidental (or just lucky) artist.

More photos:

1. Looking down into Ridgway. Note the jagged peaks in the background, the San Juan Mountains. In the viewfinder the mountains are much clearer and don't seem so washed out. Not sure what I'm doing wrong.

2. "Lupitas". The apostrophe is missing!

3. A mountainside close to Ouray. Look in the upper center for a house and then trace the road hanging off the mountain with switchbacks. i'd guess the house is 700-800' up. There's another house at the left switchback (out of the photo). Quite a driveway and quite a lot of maintenance. Land is hard to come by since the ranchers are holding on in the valley and people want the views up top, or near to the top. I wonder how long they keep those houses?

4. Most people cleared out this morning, giving the KOA guy a chance to cut the grass and make a lot of noise. Note the TV antenna is up on the MH—there's no TV reception here and he has his satellite anyway. People do strange things.

Gene
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Old 05-25-2016, 06:58 PM   #476
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Daisy has been parked across the ditch ("ditch" is western talk for an irrigation channel or ditch) from us. It is a Shasta #262 or 282 (hard to see from across the ditch) of a run of 1,941. It is in excellent shape. Note the wheels are painted the same yellow as the bottom of the body. The license plate says Oklahoma. Photos below.

Tomorrow we leave and get back to our form of work (long hours, no pay). Seems like we take the trailer to Mancos this summer to see an old friend of Barb's and so we will then look for CG's in the San Juan Mtns. Gotta stay high in the highest state in the summer to stay cool.

Gene
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