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SPS Meduim Kit Shaft Storage


Storage of the SPS shafts require removal from the coupler housing. I own several heavy duty dishwashing plastic pans that I use for draining oil on various pieces of equipment. They are large enough to hold the prop and the skeg. One quarter of a cup of oil is poured into the top of the shaft and the shaft is stood upright in the corner of a room. The flange bushing has lands and grooves cut into it which allows water to cool the bushings as well as to lubricate the bushing and shaft. Over time the oil will drain out the bottom of the shaft preventing corrosion.

Throttle Cable Wire Lock Stop Holder Swivel

In the manuals that came with my two Honda GX390’s they each show an illustration of a remote throttle linkage, but nobody stocks these.  


I believe that I found the best design of the throttle cable wire lock stop holder swivel on the internet on eBay.uk…


Once installed on the throttle arm this design allows secure adjustment from the top side using two wrenches or sets of pliers. Even with expedited international shipping these were cheaper than what I found locally which were horrendous to install. Brilliant!

Cable Return Spring


Having picked up a small spring kit, I replaced the cable return spring today. It’s really just an assist to the throttle control lever and does not serve a strong function, but I like that it returns the lever fully to its idle condition as a stronger spring. #18 in the diagram below…




Winter Projects

A week ago the temperature was -63F/-52C. In spite of this the dog still needs to go outside to air. He needs boots or he will freeze his feet. Furthermore, we go for regular walks all winter except on the coldest of days. Once the temperature drops below 0F/-20C he needs boots for extended outings. The first boots I ever tried were commercially made. They were good. They had nylon socks and were attached with a 4″ wide piece of neoprene that wrapped around his shin between his feet and knee/elbow and attached with Velcro. Eventually the Velcro wore out, the nylon wore through, and the sock came detached from the wrap. At that point I decided to make my own. I now sew a single tube out of treated tarp canvas fit to come up over the knee/elbow. I attach boot laces that wrap twice around the leg and tie in a bow on the outside so that they do not rub when he walks/runs, slipping the end of one end through the opposite bow and cinching it tight so that it cannot come undone while walking but can be easily be untied when the walk is over. I sewed a new set for him yesterday as his old ones were quite worn. I make them large enough that they do not bind in any way. They last a couple of years and are only worn when it is colder than -20C.

And then there is decoy painting and rigging.  There’s no sense waiting for better weather when I could be out doing something else.  These cold weeks are perfect for preparing for duck hunting which starts here September 1. 

Getting Up Too Early…

…is a vice habitual in horned owls, stars, [and] geese… Some hunters acquire it from geese, and some coffee pots from hunters. It is strange that of all the multitude of creatures who must rise in the morning at some time, only these few should have discovered the most pleasant and least useful time for doing it.

– Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac

Picture 347

Off Season


It’s worth watching out for specials in the off season. Next duck season I will be expanding my decoy spread. I found these decoy bags in a local store on sale. I checked out prices on line and today when I was back in town I stopped and bought them. They are half price. I was back in town to buy groceries. It’s wonderful living in a province that considers hunting, fishing, and trapping supplies to be essential items. We are currently on CV19 lockdown and all non-essential goods are not for sale. One measures 47″ x 50″. The other measures 30″ x 50″. Buying these brought me back three years ago to when I bought the Tracker 1542 itself, which I did at a great discount at this very time of the year.

Looking For John Muir

I am losing precious days. I am degenerating into a machine for making money. I am learning nothing in this trivial world of men.  I would break away and get out into the mountains and learn the news.

– John Muir

Any fool can cut down a tree because they don’t run away.

-John Muir

Christ told his disciples to consider the lillies of the field and how they grow, now whose advice am I to take, yours or his?

– John Muir

Healthy Dog Buscuits


I published the balanced dog ration I have used for decades on an earlier post. I also make my own dog treats from the same basic foundation, namely, whole grains of: wheat, barley, and oats. The oats and barley are unhulled. These feedstuffs cost me about $25 per 55 gallon drum. I mill these with a three roller roller-mill for the normal ration (equal portions by weight). Then I feed this through our flour mill and make a coarse flour out of it and bake this into a loaf of bread in a bread machine. When the loaf is done I slice it into 1″ thick slices, cut in into 2″ cubes and bake it in a convection oven to make it very hard. This lasts a very long time…sort of a hard tack. It is very hard and works well to clean my dog’s teeth as treats throughout the day. They love it and it is a fraction of the cost of buying dog treats at the store. Plus it is much healthier for them.

Here’s the recipe:

1 cup water

5 cups milled-then-ground fibrous grain mix

1/4 cup vegetable oil (corn, canola, etc.)

1/4 cup skim powdered milk

1/4 cup molasses

1 teaspoon mineral block salt

2 teaspoons yeast

You have to use a spatula to wipe the sides of the baking pan in order to get it to form into a loose ball when it is first being kneaded, adding more flour to get the right consistency.

It is very hard, full of very hard bits of cracked grain, scours teeth, and lasts a long time when kept in an open air tin. I even enjoy chewing on it.