Ever have one of those days without energy?

Got up, came downstairs, sat down, woke up three hours later. We’re not the Lone Ranger in this. Plaintiff II meant to attend a newly ordained priest’s first sermon, and arrived in time for the applause. He who slept through services in a plush recliner will not be the first to cast a stone, and the padre apparently thought it was funny.

In our defense that is a very comfortable chair. In fact, we hear it calling, and the calls will probably overwhelm us after lunch.

Yesterday was 86 degrees out, and we did some yard and lawn and airplane work, and bought a tool box at a neighbor’s yard sale, and got somewhat cooked with all of it. Today it’s in the low fifties, cloudy, with a fresh breeze. Bicycle wasn’t fun.

The tool box was a large double-stack Craftsman Pro box with a lot of Snap-On and Mac tools, and a story. Our neighbors are retiring to Florida. He is not a mechanic; his son was, a motorcycle mechanic. (There are some oddball Harley tools in the box, we think). After the son perished in a bike accident, the box of tools sat, until it was time to move. He put a reasonable price on the toolbox. We didn’t bargain (unusual for us, cheapskate New Englanders).

There is nothing of interest in the lawn work, except that we’re playing with a manual reel mower. It can’t cut any high grass, but seems like a great workout once the power mower gets us ahead of things. It’s silent and very neighborly.

Finally, the airplane. What we thought was a couple of nights’ work assembling the flaperons turned out to be more work than we expected (or that the plans let on). Flaperons are control surfaces on the trailing edge of a wing that serve as both ailerons (lateral control surfaces that roll the aircraft around its longitudinal axis) and as flaps (surfaces that change the effective camber of the wing, providing increased lift, and a steeper ascent and descent, at low airspeeds). All airplanes since about 1914 have ailerons, which were Glen Curtiss’s clever end run around the Wright Brothers’ patent on wing-warping; all airplanes that cruise at 100 knots or more have flaps (and many slower ones do, also). Combining the flap and the aileron lowers part count and empty weight (these are good things), and trades off a little control-system complexity for increased structural simplicity.

By and large, the parts fit extremely well. We are impressed and more with the quality of the Van’s RV-12 kit. We have encountered exactly one place where we believe the kit could be improved, one place (well, several places relating to the same thing) where the plans are a little off, and, we think, about four places where we had to refer to the builder forum at Van’s Air Force. (In addition to that, some bracket machining that would have been trivial for us but has caused other builders of earlier kits great stress is now done for you at the factory. Gotta love Van’s). For us, the journey is the reward, but you can also buy one already built at a factory.

This entry was posted in Administrivia on by Hognose.

About Hognose

Former Special Forces 11B2S, later 18B, weapons man. (Also served in intelligence and operations jobs in SF).

12 thoughts on “Sunday Sleepwalking

Alan Ward

Ah yes the ubiquitous garage sale tool box. Always a great deal, too bad it came to be available in that manner.


You may come to regret the push-reel mower… I certainly did.

I can only mow over the same pesky blade of grass so many times before I lose it and tear it out of the ground in frustration. It was easier when our lawn was relatively small. Now that we’ve moved, I caved and got a gas mower. Whew.

John M.

“…unusual for us, cheapskate New Englanders…”

My opening gambit in one fine Eastern land was, “what’s the final price?” The response to that merely opened the negotiations.

My Yankee great-grandfather’s opening gambit was always, “what do you have to get for this?” I find it catches most Americans so off-guard that they’ll just up and tell you their bottom dollar. I got a screamin’ deal on a Glock 29 once that way; likewise an Old Town canoe.

Under the circumstances, I understand why you didn’t. Sometimes a fair price is just a fair price.

-John M.


We have one of those self powered mowers that I think is an antique. It still works.

I’ve encountered that same issue on a day off Hognose. Especially if I worked then got out in the summer sun 95F/115 heat index and done work.


My Grandfather in the heart of what is now the ghetto of detroit had the “original” lawn mower of that variety and in the absence of children it would be my last choice. A friend of mine worked tools at sears and he described their ultra over engineered model as “The Stephen King” because of how they come back to buy an actual lawnmower. It’s THE tool for a putting green. It’s otherwise a pain. Thinking about this makes me feel guilty about the dullness of my lawnmower blade.

Talk about first world problems. Is my grass the right color? Will my neighbors think I’m a POS if I have more than _____ dandelions this spring? The misanthropy flows like a river. How many years till I finally lose my temper on some ignorant douche over his tidings of “Happy Memorial Day”?

I bet my temper losing incident will be related to either A. The FLAVOR of the tap water or B. Something related to Ice.


Hello Weaponsman,

Do you have a contact mail address that I can send a query to?

Hognose Post author

Try hognose at network impossible dot com. I should probably put an address on the page since I’m no longer in the closet.


The sheer joy on a weekend when you physically work, right? I’ve never been a morning person, able to up and out in five minutes, but when you combine that with an afternoon shift that sinks you into slumber thirty minutes after walking the door and rising for a looong morning with the books, it’s a right proper recipe for pitying those admin types with all that money that’s not worth the living it costs them.

Alan Ward

You had to go and bring up the flying machine, just when I had twenty minutes to spare…then I started measuring the space next to the garage for a new small shop, as the wife won’t give up the parking spot for no stinking plane. Then I started calculating time available before retirement to build times for each set of parts. Then I started comparing build costs for both standard and quick build. Then it was off to the Transport Canada site for more info on reg and pilot cert. Then it was another half hour on the different models the have.

So much for my Sunday night!

Hognose Post author

Why should my wives be the only ones that hate me? My brother’s wife, my friends’ wives… might as well have the whole distaff side of humanity furious at me.

Fortunately, if that happens, it’s not very serious.


Ever have one of those days without energy?

Who? Me? 🙂