Sunday, August 21, 2022

Disappointments abound


What is wrong with this picture?
I went to my favorite big-box store to buy some seal strip for a door. The original strip was scratched away by Zeus telling us that it was time to let him in.

I think I have replaced the seal strip at least three times. This time the thick, open-cell strip that I have been using was not available, possibly due to supply-chain issues.

"No worries" I thought. I bought the next size down.

Measuring the gap that it needed to span I saw that I was at about 0.600" at the maximum. 

Again, "No worries". I cut a strip off wood from a 1-by-6 to narrow the gap. Being a fan of the Taguchi Loss Function, I tapered the strip to provide a gap that was exactly mid-range of the gap this seal-strip claimed to fill. That is (0.25" + 0.375")/2

Imagine my surprise when I installed the strip into the newly narrowed gap and saw that the strip was not compressed. Nope, not at all. It just "kissed".

What the heck!

I pulled out the digital calipers and measured the height of the seal strip fresh off the roll. It was 0.317" high. How can a strip that is 0.317" tall close a gap that is 3/8" (0.375") across?

Am I missing something?

The good news is that there is only 4 inches at the bottom where there is a gap. I will give the strip a few days to relax and grow. Maybe it was compressed to get it into the package. If it does not grow to fill the gap, I intend to glue a bit of shim or popsicle stick to the bottom of the door to close up the gap.


  1. Which points out what was an inconvenience but is now becoming a real problem: If there is something for which you have a real need (and by "real need" I mean "nothing else will do," or "a lot of work / money will be involved making something else work / fit" not "I'd rather have it in blue"), best determine it NOW and lay in multiples in anticipation of it not being just hard to source but completely unavailable.

    Eventually your stash will run out but with enough on hand perhaps by then the supply chain will have caught up (HA !), the assembly to which the component is affixed will have been discarded or replaced, or you will have died and and no longer care.

  2. It is for this sort of reason (along with the Bribem-inflation that we seeing, do not believe your lying eyes!) that, having stumbled upon some OT, I invested same in new tires for TDW's vehicle, as well as my own.

    Said tires do not appear to be required for months and months, presently. Buying today locks in (a) availability, as noted above, as well as (b) today's price.

  3. Interesting... throwing out the default "go to" explanations of world cognitive decline, diversity hires, and social stigmatization of competence... Perhaps some "new material" was employed, and was too new to know it's full shrinkage over time?

    Throwing out the "go to" explanations really is mental gymnastics these days... but hey... good excersize.

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