Nostalgic moment- a return to where it all began

I was in Supercheap Auto yesterday, having a look around during their 20% off sale, and experienced quite a déjà vu moment. There was a lathe that looked surprisingly like mine. It may be Rockwell rather than GMC, and not the old GMC blue, but other than that it was very familiar.


This is where the collection and workshop began….with a basic lathe. The lathe needed a workbench, which was made from sleepers scavenged from around the property, and I needed a saw to cut them down. Bought the Triton circular saw, and the rest is history.

Back to the lathe, and a set of chisels is also in Supercheap.


At that price, they are Supercheap, and no doubt super crap, but no matter.

If you are thinking of getting into turning though, consider the Nova Comet II. May be 2-3 times the price, but you are getting 10x the lathe!

So that is that


A profound thought: the Roving Reporter commented he’d never seen the shed so empty, and the fact is, it has never been as empty as it is in the photo, even during construction. The original 6×3 was collapsed into the centre, and the new walls built around the outside. This is the first time the shed has actually been devoid of content!

Ground Zero



Space, the final frontier

I have been busy tonight, trying to maximise the amount of floorspace available in the garage (which already contains many boxes of tools, a dust extractor, 2 lathes, bandsaw, a large stack of timber, and boxes of household goods) in an attempt to be ready for a big day tomorrow.

Tomorrow (yes, even though it is a holiday!) a truck will turn up at my old place, with 3 removalists and one clear goal. Empty the workshop. (This is not to say I didn’t appreciate the offers, but this way I can save my back, and have a hope of moving everything in a day).

Depending on time, it may only be emptied of the big machines, or I may find they have time to move more- will play it by ear. In the garage, I have managed to create a hole that is 3500×3500. Will it be enough?

I have made a rough sketch on paper, drawing the footprint of each machine, and it


to work. Just.

Guess there is no way I will fit a 3x3m shed like the one I first started in, with a Triton Workcentre, Router Table, SuperJaws and GMC lathe!

Still no new shed on the horizon. Going to be a long journey.

I am finally back, cooking with gas

Gas hasn’t been the problem however.  Nor electricity, water, phone, Foxtel.

The only industry that cannot sort its cr@p out for when someone moves house is the ISPs (internet providers).  For an industry at the forefront of technology, their service sucks big-time.  Sure, they say the right things nicely when you ring them, but with that sugar on top answer “It’ll be 6-10 days for your internet to be connected”

Why???!!  Oh, and it didn’t take the maximum 10 days promised.  It took 14.  14 days for a straight-forward setup.  Hate to see how long it’d take to do a complicated one.

Foxtel managed not only to be up and running within 24 hours of moving in, but that included a physical satellite receiver install, and cables run through the house.

All the other services also happened seamlessly, without interruption.  But not the internet.

I was with Commander (once they bought out People Telecom) and moved to iPrimus (which uses Commander as their actual internet provider), so there is no issue there.  And the house was connected to ADSL2 to the only exchange in the area before the previous occupants left, so I wanted to use exactly the same wires, and connections, so no problem there either.

I can only put it down to one thing.  Cr@p customer service.  As in they don’t actually care about their impact on the customer.  I even forwarded a letter of complaint to the Red Tape Commissioner (recently set up by the state government), but no reply from their either.  Must take too much red tape to reply.

Whatever the reason, whatever the lame excuse, I’m back baby, and 3x faster than before. (Yes, I should have a lot more, but I have given up caring – comes down to the telcos providing a decent service.)

The regular show can now recommence, without trying to force it through the dog of a 3G or E service of a Telstra mobile!

Hard day at the office

Finally had a chance to do some damage in moving the shed(s) yesterday. With my folks, and Father-in-law, couple of trailers, we emptied and removed (relocated) the garden shed, and the smaller shed (3×3).

Amazing what you can pack into a small space- trip after trip was required, culminating in the relocation of air compressor, dust extractor, Jet lathe and Jet bandsaw (14″).

I came up with a way to power the trailer loading as discussed in the other post. Now mounted and tested in practice.


It has 680kg of pull (single line)

There’s a Jet in my rear view mirror!


Still all the big tools in the main shed to go. It is very disconcerting to have my tools in a shed I have to ask permission of the tenants to access. Moving sucks. And still no plan on the long term shed solution.

One company wanted payment before even quoting, and expected $5000 just for plans and permits. Seriously, a shed shouldn’t be this hard.

But there again, one of the big reasons I have been quite quiet recently is I am still having to write this on a mobile phone, and one that is struggling to see 3G in suburban Melbourne.

Moving shed is not a pleasant experience. Like “Your life on the lawn” (Reality TV show), but I’m not looking for everyone’s opinions of what I have.

Going away present

I moved to Oz December 98, and soon thereafter bought a small cactus. When we moved to our first home (the one just left), it was planted. After 14 years, it had grown to 5 stems, each around 6′ high.

Never flowered before, so as I was making a late night run to continue moving out of the sheds, I finally got to see one of the blooms in full flower. They only last a night.


A Plateau

As you’d appreciate, it sure has been a busy time, but we seem to have found a narrow plateau on this upward climb on which to take a short breather.

Been frequenting the local hardware stores, and I say stores as neither Masters or Bunnings seem to be able to address every hardware need.

Masters have the staff levels, and the call buttons which although annoying when they bellow across the store “Assistance requested in hardware” or some such every few seconds, at least it gets the store staff moving quickly! Bunnings (when I was in there tonight) had staff, but they were hard to find, and busy when you did (serving customers). Name of the game.

The house is looking in a pretty good state, considering how recently we moved, the garage a lot less so. Sure plenty of the boxes are tools, but I need to do a bit of a sort. Need to make some room too, as the majority of the shed (and none of the large machines) have been moved as yet, and they don’t have anywhere to move to.

As much as I had great plans to be organised, and move the shed in one swift hit, time, preparation, storage space and budget have all detrimentally impacted those plans, so now I am looking at a much more piecemeal move, tool here, box there.

To that end, I have a couple of ramps that I purchased for moving items out of the old house and down some steps (which are primarily intended for trailers), and an electric winch designed for 4x4s. I’ll mount that on the towbar end of trailer, and use it to pull each machine on board. It can pull around 700kg.

Quite curious to see how well it will work.

Had a builder out today to look at the shed situation – not sure just what direction to take to resolve that issue- sounds long and drawn out, and expensive. Having an easement running right through where I wanted to build is not helping.

So that is where things are at – a bit in limbo (or is it purgatory?)

Home is where the boxes are

Been a bit quiet, I know. Feels like the move is endless, and there seems so much still to do.

As of last night, at least I feel like the house itself is ready, but it has been to the detriment of preparing the shed. I was planning for this weekend to finish the move, but there’s too much still to do.

Going to have to get serious about the replacement shed. I’ve emailed a few companies, and sent some details to one of those websites where they claim they can arrange 3 quotes, but so far to no avail. Time to start ringing them directly, just as soon as I can find 5 minutes in my day.

At least now I am in the new place, I can accurately measure up, and have builders physically see the site.

In the midst of all this, I have also been trying to get the articles for ManSpace finished. And I still have my full time job to do! When it rains, it pours.

Compact Vac

Getting Foxtel sorted out for the new place, and as the guys are crawling through roof spaces, saw a vac they had bought in to tidy up. Larger than a hand vac, more portable than a traditional one. 18V Milwaukee


It’s a bit of a screamer though!

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