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Old 11-18-2012, 01:57 PM   #1
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Default Filing down jagged edges of thick plastic after using a sawzall

Ok.... we sorta drifted over here, http://www.wildlifegardeners.org/for...waukee-wi.html, "The tanks in some of those YouTubes are the exact same Schutz 330 gallon tanks I've got and so far I've used a sawzall (sp?) and cut off the tops of 2 of them. There was a YouTube on getting off the top bars I watched and 1 day I went out there and just did it!!! Which reminds me.... it's all jagged where I used the sawzall. Is there any way to file that down so I don't keep snagging my shirt sleeves every time I reach in? I doubt I can use a metal file doing that... there's probably a special file I should buy, right>>>?"
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Then.... the wildman said this, "Well if ya got a sawzall, you should also have a little 110v grinder! I've had good luck with mine, a 4" grinder is small and very powerful, (remember to use safety face shield, & heavy gloves for steel repairs). Or there is an file that will work just fine.

4" Angle Grinder

10" Flat Bastard File

Since you cut the top rail off your container crate, could you just sawzall the square tubing, flush with the top of the next rail below...so there are no stick up portions to become impaled upon? Or if you insist on the stick ups, can you use a tire iron (from your car)...insert the iron inside the square tube, bend the stick ups over, then, when bent over (ideally bend the square tube over--double) then smack the bent tang end of the stick up, toward the tank, just enough so no one can get snagged in any direction of contact upward/downward/ or sideways, with the container.

If you did cut the uprights flush with the top of the next rail below, a modern method might be covering up the jagged areas (think duct tape), or there are at least two old timey ways: beating the jagged smooth with a hammer yields the 'hammer forged wrought iron fish tank look', or trim with a permanently attached wooden rail that covers the jaggedness, paint it with sign that says: 'see the owner for bags of fish feed $1.

ww
""
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Then... I said this, "I think I'm gonna find a place for the jagged edge questions so I don't screw up this thread with tools!!!"
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Sooo... here's a new thread on filing down the jagged edges of a Schutz tank!!!
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Old 11-18-2012, 02:03 PM   #2
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I went outside and took some photos. I did something really stupid and wasted the upper side of a tank so I had to have 2 kids haul that 1 out and haul a new 1 in last night and then I unscrewed the upper support bars of the frame and used the sawzall again so nothing out there looks amiss and… those 2 kids are sworn to secrecy because I just don’t need any grief right about now. I can still find a use for the 1 I trashed I'm sure... what to do with it will come to me some day.... I hope. The frame's still good and the lower portion of the tank is unaffected. Anywhooo.... I'd been rooting around in my husband's tools since he was gone for the day trying to find something that I could use to file down the edges and just about the time nothing jumped out at me as being the right tool.... I spotted my Weed Dragon just sitting in the garage doing nothing and got a brainstorm.... why not use it to melt the edges... afterall.... it's HDPE 2 plastic>>>? VERY bad idea.... especially inside a greenhouse where there was no fire extinguisher. This is a Weed Dragon, http://www.weeddragon.com/. I 'spose I don't need to say anymore, eh?
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Ok…. I screwed up big time trying to melt the jagged edges and ended up melting about 1 square foot of the side of my Schutz and a label on the side caught on fire. The edges weren’t melting so I decided I’d move the torch in closer… oh well…. live and learn. It’s under a tarp on the driveway right now because I’m not exactly in the mood for any comments from my husband… what he doesn’t see…. he can’t comment on. I looked at your angle grinder. I love Harbor Freight BTW!!! If we’ve got something like that…. I’ve never seen it and he got up bright and early and took off for breakfast with friends… I’ll ask him when he gets back but… I’m pretty sure we don’t and I’ve decided I’m gonna buy 1 but…. I’ve got a few questions now that I’ve been poking around and reading. Here’s my 1st question… is it true a 4 ½” angle grinder can accept 4” AND 4 ½” discs? Are these grinders really good at removing rust like some of the reviews say? I’m looking at 1 of the reviews on the tool, 4" Angle Grinder, “Mine also was used 3 times and gave up the ghost.
So did the basic 4 1/2".
Not to mention the 4 1/2 Heavy Duty is not just WAY better it's also cheap, you can get the 4 1/12 basic for $14.99, $9.99 if you pay attention, and the 4 1/2 Heavy Duty for $19.99, $14.99 if you pay attention, and they can both use 4" or 4 1/2" discs.
Get the 4 1/2 Heavy Duty then you won't be disappointed,unless maybe you get a rare lemon.
Some other folk reviewing the tool said similar so I searched their site and found the heavy duty 1, Heavy Duty 4-1/2" Angle Grinder. The prices is the same for both it’s just that 1 is a 4” and 1’s a 4 ½”. Is there any reason why you suggested a 4”…. was it just the 1st grinder that popped up to give me an example of what they looked like or do you own it and love it>?. Sears has a bunch of these grinders ranging anywhere from $34 on up to over $300, Angle Grinder from Sears.com. If I bought from Sears….I’d be able to run over and feel how they feel if that makes any sense. The other thing is I think Sears guarantees all tools for life. Maybe they exclude motorized tools though…. I dunno. There’s 1 that’s about $15 more expensive than the 1 you picked out that I spotted that has decent reviews, Craftsman Evolv 4 1/2 in. Small Angle Grinder - Tools - Corded Handheld Power Tools - All Corded Power Tools. I wouldn’t have to pay the $7 shipping and handling fee…. just about $2 in sales tax so that brings the difference between the 3 down to only $10 and it’s got a little bit bigger motor. Is a little bit bigger motor worth an extra $10?
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1st photo shows 330 gallon Schutz tanks... 2nd shows the jagged edges that HURT!!! 3rd photo shows how I'm temporarily using em until the holidays are over so I can get those chicks out of the house and why I'm getting zinged every time I reach in the tank. They've got to stay out there.... I don't have any other place to put em in this weather!!!
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Old 11-18-2012, 04:13 PM   #3
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pawprint the Equilibrium of a new tool

Ya the grinder is good value tool,~~just because some nut tore up their brand new grinder and sent a 'gripe E-mail' doesn't mean you will get a dud. Tell em you want a 'good one', and tell em wildwatcher sent ya (if that don't work, just ask for the pretty girl discount)! The guy gripes because he can't make his $30 grinder work...I wouldn't listen to that guy for much, he probably would tear up a $250 grinder also, if he is going to drag it from the back of his pick-up (he forgot to tell that part of the story)!

If ya get a 4 1/2", it is alittle larger, and will be alittle more versatile because it can accept 4" or 4 1/2" grinding wheels and since it is same price, you might go either way 4" or 4 1/2"...it's your money so you have to choose, basically the motor/gear head is the same, the main difference is the blade shield size. Just so ya know~~mine is a Chicago Electric/chinese import I bought from Harbor Freight, over 20 yrs ago, and..........the one from Sears is also a chinese import with a different label, both are good units. You didn't really think 'Sears' made that grinder...did ya? Since you have never used a little grinder like these, I would highly recommend testing one at Sears or home depot, Harbor Freight or Northern Tools probably has a store in the city of Big Shoulders, or maybe your neighbor with the homemade greenhouse dolly has one you can test run.

I did not realize you were cutting the plastic & leaving it jagged, the plastic is easy, use that duct tape, or re-cut with a different, smoother cut sawzall blade, use a blade with smaller teeth, your probably using the extra course toothed 'fence post blade', try the extra fine toothed 'metal hack saw blade', the extra fine blade is probably in the bottom of the box the sawzall is stored in. Another easy way to cut plastic smooth is heat your gardening/kitchen knife blade red hot, then cut the plastic with the heated edge. If nothing else you can practice on your torn up container, while experimenting, please practice some 'plastic welding techniques' also. Heyyyyyyyy lots of people use those things as 'the ugliest dog proof outdoor trash can holders'.

And while your 'creating' can you get the plastic tub out of the metal cage on your 'burned/sawed/duct taped experimenter'? I mean why stop at just cutting the top off and catching it on fire~~~because maybe you can still use it for something, maybe laid on its' side as an outdoor closet, or up-side down~~~ as 'huge outdoor glow orb', with a snazzy holiday specific paint job, with the right treatment, I doubt anyone would notice that is even square!

ww
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:43 AM   #4
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Alrightie….. you’re right…. “real” people tend to post negative reviews unless…. they’re bought and paid for shills. I keep forgetting…. very few reviews are legitimate at sites like that unless they’re from whiners so I probably shouldn’t go by those but…. they suck me in because I keep thinking they’re all legitimate and they’re not. BTW….. I found out we’ve got a 7” angle grinder…. I didn’t see it because it was in a case. It’s pretty big and heavy so I’m gonna take a pass on using it. He said go buy a smaller 1 or try the belt or the palm sander… they might load up but they could work and if they don’t work…. he’s got a little propane torch for sweating pipe joints he’ll look for that he “thinks” I could use that he “thinks” would work…. egads…. here I go again… if at 1st I don’t succeed burning the greenhouse to the ground…. try again. I was thinking it might be time to resort to duct tape and just call it a day but naaaa…. I want a new tool!!!
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You gave me what I wanted to know about the angle grinders. The 4 ½ is more versatile than the 4” and if Sears isn’t going to guarantee the brand they’re selling for life like they do their hand tools…. there’s no reason for me to be shelling out an extra $10. I know what a 7” grinder feels like now and…. that’s too much tool for me just like larger chainsaws are too much tool for me. Next time I go to Sears I can ask to hold their 4 ½”. That’ll give me an idea of whether I could reasonably expect to be able to use it or not. If a tool weighs too much…. I can’t control it properly so there’s no point buying it.
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That homemade dolly didn’t belong to 1 of my neighbors…. it was at Polyface Farm. Somebody there made it and they use it to move chicken tractors around and I took a photo of it thinking I could make something like that myself but…. somebody here found a dolly for sale and to be honest with ya…. I don’t know how to weld yet so… I went and bought a dolly like what was suggested. Our old dolly got trashed so it’s not like we can’t use the new dolly for things other than the chicken tractor. The 1 I bought has solid rubber tires and is rated to 600 lbs.
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Ok… back to the jagged edge…. I didn’t realize I was leaving it jagged either. There were an assortment of blades in with it and it’s not like they were labeled so…. I used the blade that was already in it. I had a hard time starting the cut. The blade wasn’t going in and was dancing all over the top of the tank. I just kept at it and lowered the handle to almost horizontal with the tank and finally it cut down so I could get going. Now that I know how to start a cut… I could re-cut using a blade with smaller teeth in it. I still think the edge will need to be filed down though.
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Another easy way to cut plastic smooth is heat your gardening/kitchen knife blade red hot, then cut the plastic with the heated edge.” I actually tried that because I’ve used knives heated up to redhot to cut through the tops of 2 liter pop bottles and 5 gallon buckets before. It woulda worked I think. Problem was two-fold…. the plastic on these Schutz tanks is ¼” thick and by the time I made it from the kitchen stove out to the greenhouse with my knife…. it had already cooled down and wouldn't even make a dent in that thickness of plastic. These tanks are bulky…. I thought about having somebody help me move 1 onto the patio to get closer to the kitchen stove but by then… I remembered we had a sawzall.
I've got electricity out there. I've got a wood burning tool that heats up pretty good.... think that would work?
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:54 AM   #5
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Huge outdoor holiday glow orbs for me out front… somehow I don’t think that would go over too well where I live…. nice try!!!! Here’s my game plan for the torched Shutz tank sitting out on the driveway under a tarp…. I’ve got a heavy duty bolt cutter. I’m thinking I can cut the frame down to ¾ its current height by snipping off the vertical supports just above the upper side rung. It’s aluminum so I can’t imagine it being too hard for me to snip…. if it is…. I’ve got kids at home right now that are waaaay stronger than me who could hack down the frame height. The tanks do slip out of the frames easily soon as you remove the top braces or…. cut them off. Anywhooo… once I get the frame cut down… I’ll just use the sawzall again and cut down the actual tank level with the frame. Voila!!! A brand new chick brooder for the living room that I can lean into that’s draft free with no “evidence” of the torch number I did on it that might even fit through the front door. How’s that for “creativity”!!! And…. my husband will be so proud of me for being resourceful.
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FWIW…. I really think somebody like your or spruce or suunto or NEWisc could make $$$ running tool workshops for white collar workers. I see power tools on shelves and even though I can read what they are on the box…. I have no clue how to use most of em. That goes for most hand tools too…. like the specialty screw driver I had to use getting off the top bars on the tanks. I took 1 look at the screw and knew I’d never seen anything like that before and couldn’t use a regular or a Phillips screw driver on it. I had to go online to find out I needed something called a torx screwdriver. I found a few in my husband’s toolbox but…. the screws were on too tight and I couldn’t get em off so that’s when I learned I needed a torx bit and a ratchet which…. my husband kindly left on the kitchen table for me before he went to work chuckling. 1 problem…. I’d never used a ratchet before and did great getting the screws off soon as I learned to put my “wrist” into it but… not so great reattaching the supports because I didn’t know the very basics of putting a ratchet in reverse.…. now I do. I’m not stupid…. really…. I’m not. My interests were elsewhere in the past is all and I missed out on golden opportunities to learn from my elders by doing. There was a definite division of labor in our house when I was growing up which didn’t help matters either. I’m trying to make up for lost time…. I’m getting there… slow but sure!!!
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Old 11-19-2012, 01:21 PM   #6
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I think you deserve 5 stars for the chicken hotel you made; Wasn't it you who figured out the Fortune 500 company's interests laid in our not using our creativity?

You found out the dragon weeder wasn't the best way to work plastic. Most times fire isn't going to give you a workable surface but sometimes rubber/plastic deflect grinders or saws or clog up; Now you'll know what works and what doesn't.

Most of the tools at Harbor Freight are well built for a do-it- yourselfer; Any tool can be destroyed in the wrong hands.

Practice cutting down that container nice and even and then file that edge.
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:10 PM   #7
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shopping cart ~jag-a-licious~

ohhhhhhhhhh man NOW we are having wildlifegardeners fun! This thread rocks even if it seems like an unauthorized advertisement for chinese import grinderz!

Ok no one, absolutely no one thinks your stupid, I would even say 'your absolutely brilliant'! Just so ya know Equilibrium, I heard that the great Albert Einstein had several 'scary' fires in his greenhouse, so your in good company! I have hopes you shall continue laughing all the way throughout this ~~jag-a-licious~~ thread! The fact that your hubby is chuckling off to work is always a good sign, now lets remember the basic rule to keep him chuckling when he gets home: no, NO, nOOOOOOOO running with red hot knives!

If I were to host a white collar workshop, I hope ya know that wearing the Christmas Elf Uniform is just one of the perks for white collar types with toy making ideas, or tool selection ideas for the job at hand. The Christmas Elf Uniform also comes in handy, when in YOUR neighborhood, it kind of gets those people in the holiday decorating spirit! Here is an idea that would save you the price of buying a grinder, and requires no special wrist action...turn your 'experimental' container up-side down, tie rope to it, tie other end of rope to back of your car, drive like 'nothing is wrong' until the top is smoothly ground from being dragged on the pavement, quickly yielding the perfect chicken coop! This method requires the Christmas Elf Uniform and timing, 0700 during the morning commute should be an excellent time to drive your coop around town. 0700 is when Chicago traffic is at a standstill, so you can jump out and check your grinding progress, also onlookers will be satisfied that you obviously 'know what your doing', because of the 'white collar uniform' & frequent 'middle of the road inspections'.

Now you tell us that you have a wood burner, why didn't you say that earlier, that should be safer than running with hot knives! But still, a trip to Sears just to hear you say: "Next time I go to Sears I can ask to hold their 4 ½”, should be worth it, also the Sears model might come with a plastic tool box to store it in, the one from HarborFreight just comes in cardboard box, with instructions written in chinese! LOL Did you know that a 4" grinder can eliminate other specialty tools? ohhHHHHHHH yeah, just grind the heads right off the specialty screws & voila, unbolted in seconds, and no digging around for the right sized torx bit! I've used my 4" grinder on steel, cast iron, aluminum, plastic, fiberglass, concrete, paint, bricks, wood, they even make a 'sander disc pad' that you can stick sand paper too. So check on the grinder, but also check on the various 'blades' to put on the thing, kind of like your sawzall, different blades for different grinding materials.

ww


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Old 12-05-2012, 12:18 AM   #8
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spruce> You found out the dragon weeder wasn't the best way to work plastic.” Ha ha ha…. that I did…. that I did!!! What really surprised me was how fast it melted the plastic. 1 second everything looked like all was well and the next second…. it was like the whole upper portion of the tank disappeared into thin air.
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I DO really like Harbor Freight!!! I keep a “wish” list of what I want from them and from Sears on my computer and…. another list of building materials suppliers. Sometimes I just go to Harbor Freight looking to see if any of the tools I want are on sale.
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I used a different blade from the box that had finer teeth and it made all the difference in the world!!! The edge was still a little jagged but nothing like the other tanks. I found a metal file and spent all of like 10 minutes smoothing down the edge. I just filed it the same way I file my nails but…. I still WANT a grinder!!!
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ww> My mom used to quote Einstein and I guess I turned into my mom when we had kids because I started quoting him too. Here’s 1 I had up on the frig for a few years, "The only thing more dangerous than ignorance is arrogance."
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Speaking of chuckling husbands…. we went to an exhibit and out to dinner with 1 of his friends last weekend. We were really close to a HUGE Cabella’s so we had to make a pit stop because…. they’re both into camping “stuff”. They let me off at the door then parked. I walked in on my own and beelined it to the knife counter. I was looking for a Schrank Old Timer ‘Muskrat’ knife that a friend told me I “needed”. They didn’t have the exact knife I was looking for but…. you know how it goes when you’re toy shopping…. you have to start holding and giving every knife that interests you a test “feel”. So I’m at the counter and the young man is pulling out knife after knife for me to “feel” and he looks at me and informs me that if I can just tell him what kind of a knife the person I’m buying the gift for wants…. he can suggest a few. I hear “chuckling” behind me. I turn around and it’s my husband and his friend… I shoot them my “knockitoff” look. The young man looks at my husband and his friend not making the connection we’re all together because they walked in after me and proceeds to ask me again if I can tell him what kind of a “gift” knife I’m looking for. His persistence reduced my husband and his friend to out and out laughter and the poor guy was totally thrown for a loop. I told him the “gift” knife was for ME and that I’d know which 1 I wanted soon as I got 1 in my hand that “felt” good enough to stab husbands with and to ignore the 2 hyenas behind me because 1 of em was my husband. Get this…. he says maybe 1 of the hyenas could suggest a knife I’d like. Men!!!
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The Christmas Elf Uniform also comes in handy, when in YOUR neighborhood, it kind of gets those people in the holiday decorating spirit!” Can you like post a photo of yourself in an elf uniform complete with tights>>> It would really cheer me up and get me in the holiday mode!!!
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turn your 'experimental' container up-side down, tie rope to it, tie other end of rope to back of your car, drive like 'nothing is wrong' until the top is smoothly ground from being dragged on the pavement” When my husband reads this….he’ll tell me you’re contributing to the delinquency of his wife!!! FWIW…. if I would have thought of that…. I might have tried it…. not on the road but just around our neighborhood. I was tired of getting sliced and diced up every time I reached in the brooder.
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Sorry about not mentioning the wood burning pen…. the kind I’ve got sorta looks like a curling iron. I thought about trying it but decided against it. I was thinking I’d be there all day dabbing the edge with the hot tip and then I got to thinking about how I’d get any plastic off the tip so I could use it on wood.
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I didn’t know a grinder could eliminate other specialty tools…. I did decide I HAD to have 1 though but there’s no rush right now since I took care of the jagged edge. I went to Sears…. their 4 1/2” grinder is a manageable weight. I want it…. I need it…. it has my name on it and…. my husband says he might buy me some accessories if I behave myself. Uh huh…. sure. He won’t be buying accessories for me…. he’ll be buying em for himself so he can play with MY new grinder!!!
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Old 12-05-2012, 10:05 AM   #9
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snowman mom's quotes are the best

Ya a folding knife is nice choice, for those that dash around at times. Stabbing chuckling husbands will get you on Santa's naughty list, so be careful that way! It is kind of funny tho, Americans haz a kitchen drawer full of knives, probably a butcherblock thing with more knives, and they need one more to carry around in pocket. LOL

'Contributing to the delinquency of his wife'~~uhhhhhohhhhhhh, and I've been 'good' all this year & now at the last minute I'm on Santa's naughty list again. LOL

Now why would I change your vivid imagination with a real pix, of me in Elf Uniform~~complete with tights~~ but if it helps, I'm the big one with turkey feather in his cap!

I guess I'll get another 'saleman of the month' trophy, for you got the sawzall to perform properly, filed for smoothness, and yet you insist: "I still WANT a grinder"...that's why I told ya 'tell em wildwatcher sent ya', hoping for a commission one of these days.

eeerrrrr-ummm so the container out in the driveway, covered with tarp, has been justified & usable now? Still not going for the hideous 'glow ORB' idea--I get that. And how many containers have you modified so far? And your going to make em into fish tanks, did I hear that correctly?

Sending Happy Merry Christmas Wishes to you & yours.

ww
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Old 12-07-2012, 12:21 PM   #10
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I've got the kitchen drawer loaded with knives just like everybody else and I started buying knives to use outside just because I keep hoping to find some sort of a class somewhere that will go over "real" knife use. I probably should go to the senior center and bring my stash with me.... that'd get results!!! The teeny tiny little Swiss Army pocket knife I've got is just too small to be of much use to me except for filing down a finger nail if I tear 1 off. I could really use a pocket knife that's a little bigger.
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Ummm... I've been living with a bunch of exhibitionists I tell you. These kids are NOT modest.... you'd think they'd run for a towel when they're out of fresh 1s but no.... they saunter along in their birthday suits dripping everywhere on my floors and my husband is no better than them. I swear there were days it was like a gym locker room around here leaving zip nadda nothing to anyone's imagination so.... a man in tights would be something new.... get me a photo!!!! I wanna see you all dolled up "manly-like" in an elf costume!!!
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About the grinder.... the 1 my husband has is too heavy. 1 thing I've learned about me and tools is that if it's too heavy for me.... I'm gonna tire out fast and that's when I'll end up hurting myself so.... I could really use the smaller grinder... some day. Not that I know exactly what I'll do with it but ever since you described it as being able to be used for a lot more things than just grinding.... it went to the top of my list. I'm really out of the phase of wanting bathrobes and I never was into jewelry or candy. Gimmie TOOLS.... more tools and knives too!!! And.... I want a little hand gun that shoots .22 shorts that's just for me so the next time 1 of our chikcens decides to try to kill itself and is half dead.... I can put it out of its misery myself without waiting for my husband or running to the vet. I just found out the little 22 pistol we got from who knows where that I kept for just such an occasion doesn't work. I finally had enough courage to pull the trigger on a chick that somehow got its leg and wing hung up in a hanging feeder.... I have no idea how it did that overnight but.... it did and.... nothing happened. So... I pulled the trigger again and again.... nothing happened and again and again and again while the poor thing was just sitting there and still nothing so I want 1 that's my own that works because now I know for sure I would use it if I had to. Chickens are a part of our life now.... hawks always have been and there's a big hawk nest in striking distance of our chicken run so I have no doubt she'll take a few more of our chickens for her young next year. Hawks and chickens don't mix not to mention I really should write a book on the 101 ways chickens try to kill themselves. Anywhoo.... I NEED my own little .22 just like I need that grinder and a normal sized pocket knife!!!!
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