101 Uses For Napalm #2

Building airplanes and otherwise tinkering with everything gets one involved with a lot of design type work or if you prefer, backyard engineering. For example, in the rebuild of the Skyraider (Wandering Stepchild Returns) I converted it from a tail dragger to a nose wheel configuration, which required that I design and build the nose wheel, mounts and attachment fittings. Some of this type stuff requires that you wander through hardware stores and lumber yards looking for something that you might be able to use to accomplish something or other. And then again, you might think up something that you might use and go looking for that particular item.

Now the fun part starts when you are wandering through the store, looking for that item – and that ever-helpful sales clerk comes up and says, “May I help you find something?”

“Sure, I need a six-inch long compression spring, ¾ inch in diameter with a linear spring rate of 25 pounds per inch.”

Now that’s pretty clear, right?

But then comes the zinger from Mr. Ever-helpful, “What’s it for?”

Well, gee – I’m going to take a piece of 1” by .058 wall thickness 4130 chrome-moly tubing and cut a ¼ inch slot about three inches long in each side and insert an AN4-11 bolt through it to hold the spring and place that inside a 1 and 1/8th inch piece of .058 wall thickness tube with a ¼ inch hole in it that will line up with the slot in the inside tube and hold the spring so that . . .

What difference does it make? He either has the spring or he doesn’t.

Yesterday I went to Best Buy and as the transformer thingy that I plug into the wall outlet to power one of my wireless headsets is only working part time, I thought I’d look for one of the same voltage that I could cut the plug off of and replace with the one from the headset.

“May I help you find something?”

“Looking for a universal 9 volt transformer.”

“What’s it for?”

“Boilerplate, flight of two Fox fours at your 320 for 42. Feet dry heading for angels 15. Delta fives and Nape. Can we be of service?”

Oh yes!

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