Sunday, January 29, 2023

Little pieces

I weighed the wood I brought in today before we started burning. I had 20 lbs-4 oz and we got a five-hour burn out of the wood.

Our burn-rate came to just a freckle more than four-pounds-per-hour. The living-room (call it 700 square-feet) went from 66F to 75F while the outside temp is 24 and there is no wind.


Those brownish cylinders that are approximately the size and color of cooked possum guts are the hand-rolled noodles.

I remember going to a cabin with my dad once and there was not much in the way of groceries. He made something that I remember him calling "Gleece", or at least that is how my 9-year-old ears heard it. It was basically little balls of bread dough (minus the yeast) that was rolled between the palms of our hands into "worms" and dropped into boiling soup.

The magic of the internet brings us this. Close enough for government work.

Dad's people spoke German. His mother was from the Baltic regions based on a congenital disorder she had. His father was from the southeastern corner of the Austrio-Hungarian empire.

I gave it a whack. I used whole-wheat flour but I am sure almost any ground grain would work, masa, buckwheat, barley, rye-flour...

Cheap and filling. And if you are hungry, delicious.

Taco/chili seasoning

I have been using a modified version of a taco seasoning I stole from All Recipes.

  • One tablespoon commercial chili powder
  • One teaspoon non-iodized salt
  • One teaspoon black pepper
  • One teaspoon onion powder
  • One teaspoon ground paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground, dried garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon star anise powder (freshly made)

This version has less cumin and more cayenne than the All Recipes version. A few other measurements were tweaked as well. There really is no "right" or "wrong" combination. It is a matter of what doing what you and your family like and having a basic, versatile mix that saves time.

I have been using one tablespoon per pound of meat but will be dialing back a little bit in future ventures.

Rose seeds

I found some donor plants for rose seeds. Three of them were in front of the Arby's in Charlotte, Michigan. Another was in a garden in front of a hospice (I only pilfered two hips from that bush). A third donor was located in southeast Eaton Rapids and I will ask permission before liberating some hips.

Comments on the "Dumb Question" post

Thanks a million to everybody who commented on that post. The comments were 20X times better than what I wrote. I sent the link to Belladonna and suggested that she read it (and the comments).

In the past, she has been bruised by "favoritism" and I think the comments will be useful to her to give her a focal plane to snap what happened into focus.

Sixty Month Goals

The ever-lovely and brilliant Mrs ERJ and I are going through the process of hammering out our sixty-month goals. People without goals never know when they have arrived or if they need to make corrections to the course they are steering.

I keep having little sub-goals sneaking into my brainstorming list. For instance, I want to catch, clean and eat at least 12 meals of local fish per year. That would be 24 "plates" of fish between Mrs ERJ and I.

I am not sure I can talk Mrs ERJ into carp but I could catch one and use it for cut-bait and catch a mess of channel cats. Between that and panfish it is hard for me to imagine that I would fail to catch that much fish in four-to-six outings.

Rust remediation

An earlier post talked about a .308 Winchester with a rusty barrel.

A short session of shooting suggested that the rust was mostly on the exterior of the barrel and that the rifling was "good enough".

I spent part of this weekend sanding down the outside of the barrel that was rusty and then spray-painting with "cold galvanizing" primer and then flat-black enamel. The primer is usually much cheaper locally than it is over the internet.

Most rifle barrels are now painted rather than "blued". Bluing is a form of oxidization. That oxide coating is then impregnated with oil.

Even though it sounds like heresy to paint a rifle barrel, consider how long the paint on automobiles lasts. Given a good surface treatment (phosphating), primer and then UV resistant color-coat, there is no reason the exterior of a rifle barrel cannot be as corrosion resistant as the hood of a Toyota. One tip is to use primers and color coats from the same manufacturer as there is a better chance you will avoid an unfortunate incompatibility.

And there is absolutely no law that prohibits you from coating the final coat of paint with a rust-inhibiting oil to seal any cracks, pinholes or other imperfections in your paint job.


  1. how do you know about the size and color of cooked possum guts---ken

    1. Q: Do you know what sound a possum makes?
      A: Thump-thump

      It is a southern Michigan thing.

    2. I got it. Took awhile. Duh.-----ken

    3. Lol, EastTN thing, too.

  2. Good on you for hammering out the details. A goal without a plan is just a wish.
    Possums are tick magnets, they groom off and consume many pounds of ticks during their lifetime. Unless one becomes problematic around here I am pretty much live and let live.
    Whistle Pigs are another story though.


  3. My Hoppes 9 once caused the paint to peal off the barrel of a pistol I owned. How do you figure what is a safe cleaner?

    1. Hoppes is essentially a lacquer thinner(amyl acetate, I think)with some extra stuff thrown in to deal with metal fouling. It will attack some paints but leave others. Choose the paint type wisely; CeraKoat or DuraCoat, for example. As far as a good cleaner goes, nothing beats the stuff purposely made for guns. However, I will say that Kroil is a good addition to the cleaning arsenal.

    2. Lol@ kroil... in my term at the paving company, each guy had their own special blend of penetrating oil, and natch theirs was the best! Asphalt driveway paving afforded several opportunities to put them to the test...
      The funniest sight would be one of the half-wits running around the shop trying to hide from prying eyes whilst playing alchemist with the various bottles of concoctions.

  4. ERJ

    Goals are exceptionally useful. Commitment to a clear mission builds resilience and determination; all are lacking in certain segments of our people. I do best setting small weekly goals that contribute to the mission. Our little market garden and livestock operation almost require it to match work flow to weather conditions.

    In a former life we painted rifles and all manner of mission support gear. It worked well despite aggravating some of the senior brass. Metal prep is the important part. Degrease well with acetone and remove all corrosion or contaminants. Thin coats of Krylon matte rattle can paint holds up remarkably well, even on plastics. Not as well as the heat cures finishes but good enough. Easy and cheap. Be cautious with cleaning solvents to avoid stripping the paint.

    Cleaning solvents. In a that former life we used a lot of JP8 as a powder solvent. Worked great. Follow up with a light oil, like break free.

    Ed Harris developed his Ed’s Red home brew cleaner to replicate WW2 rifle bore cleaner. It works superbly. Instructions can be found easily on the interwebs. Ingredients from your local box store or auto parts store. It’s all I use now for routine cleaning. Copper fouling is managed with Sweets 7.62’or Butches Bore Shine.

    Gotta keep those fishing rods ready to go, especially then rimfire versions 😉

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  6. Some years back, i purchased a CBC single shot .410 in a pawn shop for less than $50. The bore was clean, but its outside finish clearly told me 'barn gun'. After cleaning off accumulated outside metal finish, I sprayed with outdoor bar-b-que pit paint, giving a dull finish that is easy to take care of outdoors. Its a sho-nuff woods roamer now.

  7. What grit sandpaper did you use? Asking for a friend

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  9. J Dub

    I’ve refinished a bunch to tools over the years. If the rust isn’t too deep I start with 220 and work up to 400 for a rust blue finish.

    If pitting is deep, bead blast first. After that I start at 120 and work up.

    It’s a lot easier if you put polishing grit on a hard wheel with a little adhesive.


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