So after the awful tragedy of Friday night I spent the rest of the weekend trying to keep myself as distracted as possible to avoid focusing on the loss of Tuki and my role in it. During the day I got on the tractor and did my best to mow the yard. After two weeks of torrential rain it looked like hell. I got more cut than I expected at first which at least made things look a little less chaotic.
I was glad that the submersible pump that I ordered showed up. I wasted little time before hooking it up behind the chicken coop. There was a small hole that was dug out by the chickens by their playground which is where some of the deepest water resides. I took an unused pot and placed it in the hole, it fit pretty much perfectly.
The reason I used this set up was I wanted the pump to be slightly below ground level so it pumps out as much water as possible. I ran two extension cords from the shed and 150 feet of hose to the large drainage ditch in between our property and the one to our east.
I plugged in the pump and it started humming along. The other end of the hose was so far away I couldn’t verify it was working until I walked over to the ditch. I was glad to see/hear a strong flow of water dumping out the end. The pump has been running constantly since about 3PM Saturday and has dropped the water level back there by several inches. The problem is there is SO much water, I bet it is easily 15-20 thousand gallons, that even with the 1/3 hp pump going full speed it is going to take a long time to get the water out of there. By yesterday afternoon there was an appreciable difference, enough that the chickens started to venture further back. I have a feeling the pump is going to be a permanent fixture in the chicken yard during wet season.
I spent a lot of time getting my feet wet with 3D printing. I had two big issues, oozing and some prints lifting from the print platform. I addressed the lifting print by using a trick others posted with this model printer. It involved flipping the print bed upside down so the glass side is up. After doing that I applied blue painter’s tape to the glass. The prints appeared to adhere consistently after that.
The oozing was a pain. Basically before a print begins the extruder (print nozzle) is brought up to operating temperature, somewhere between 200 and 220 degree celsius (400 degrees!). As it hit that temp some of the plastic filament starts to melt and run out of the extruder. Depending on how much, it can screw up the print as the unwanted plastic gets in the way.
To fix this I used multiple remedies. I set the printer to run at a slightly lower temperature which slowed down the oozing but didn’t totally eliminate it. I also would babysit the start of the print job. Just as the extruder got to temp but before it actually starts printing I quickly grabbed the stuff that oozed out and cut it off. Finally, I started putting “brims” on the pieces which creates a thin outline around the base of the model. During the brim creation any junk that was on the nozzle normally will come off and should not affect the model building itself.
The printer has been working pretty much non-stop all weekend. I printed a mudguard for the Msuper, an external spool holder for the printer which allows larger filament spools to be used and five pieces for a gun model that Cindy is making for her Supercon costume. I have quickly seen why 3D printing can become a rather addicting hobby. Watching the printer build a model is somewhat mesmerizing.
Saturday night we watched Assassin’s Creed, our latest Netflix rental. I never played the video game the movie is based on so I really had no frame of reference. I thought even without that background the movie stood alone pretty well as decent B+ entertainment.
Sunday morning instead of running I again put in time on the rower, 30 minutes to simulate roughly what my 5k runs consume. Rowing is a different kind of uncomfortable compared to running. The lack of impact is nice and the overall body benefit is surely higher. However I don’t get quite the sense of accomplishment rowing 30 minutes compared to running the same amount of time. I’m not sure why.
Cindy and I got out for a hot but fun ride on our electric unicycles mid-morning. It was the fastest sustained riding Cindy has done to date. She really is getting to the point where she can concentrate more on just enjoying the ride experience instead of having to constantly fear losing control.
I got to talk to my dad yesterday to catch up. As in most of our conversations there are portions where dad grumbles about various things in the world that just piss him off. I am excited that he appears to be still moving forward with his plans to install a large scale solar array on his property.
Sunday afternoon was pretty chill. Katie came over to visit for a little while and I spent time working on more 3D printing, paying my bills, and playing a little WoW. Cindy worked hard to make my Father’s Day as pleasant as it could be which I appreciated.
I took Sadie back this morning to Ali’s place. We spoke only briefly about the Tuki incident. If I would have talked about it more I am pretty sure both of us would have started crying. Lucky goes home this evening so all of a sudden the household gets a lot less crazy and quieter. The lack of Tuki’s steady contribution to the sound environment in the house is something that is going to feel very strange for a long time…