EDC mid October to mid November 2017

Pocket dumps and knife pocs taken in the last month. Oldest to newest… 

Advertisements
Categories: Daily-cary-log, EDC, Hanks, knives | Leave a comment

A new idea; cord or zipper pull ends. 

Had this thought while turning beads last night, I’ve seen others do this,  and I used to do a few when my beads included modified cartridge cases.  Bored one end of a pair of my medium sized aluminum beads out larger.  Forms a snug fit over a knot tied in a single strand of u-gutted 550 cord.  

(Yes I know I need to re-trim the flash on those holes… I somehow missed it before polishing them.)

I need to play with the hole size. See if I can get one big enough in this metal stock, to fit over a knot of two strands of gutted 550. So that they could be put on loops of 550 cord.

  I know I can fit that into my magnum beads, but I’m not sure it can fit in this “large” size and leave material for much of an outer design. 
 Also need to try it in my “small” sized beads, a hole size combo that will fit micro cord knots. 

Categories: Adventure Metal Works, Aluminum, Beads, EDC, Fabrication, Frigid-Metals, New Products, Products, Prototypes | 1 Comment

Beaded shop side tracking… 

Went to the shop to do a few things last night, only got one done. I got side tracked with other ideas… “What ideas?” you ask? I’m glad you did! 🙂








Coming soon to a sales page, to be announced soon as well. 🙂

Categories: Adventure Metal Works, Beads, Brass, Custom, EDC, Fabrication, Frigid-Metals | Leave a comment

New utility knife. 

Been having the idea lately,  related to having a couple Mora knives around, “just how much knife do I need?”

As in, I carry some pretty fancy traditional folders… but a blade is a blade.  In the past I’ve carried a folding razor knife for years, and been pretty happy. Did find that I prefer a longer edge though than that, generally.

Larely I’m also like the idea of carrying a fixed blade, right now opening a folder in the cold/snow/gloves is being annoying.

But the low cost Mora is too big for easy carry. So I want a Mora, only smaller…

I thought I’d see what I could find fixed, small, low cost, just your general disposable who cares type knife.

First thought was a small steak or boning knife from Old Hickory. They’re great steel, a popular knife to modify for woods use.

Saw on a forum, a guy(in an amazing blast from the past, I knew this guy on another long dead forum about a decade ago!) using a Victorinox boning/butcher knife (sometimes called/sold as a “rabbit knife” ) as a small field knife.  Small, low cost but Vics great steel. Nifty!

(Guys name is Spork, now on BCUSA, his pic, stolen by me.)

 But it being a little bigger than what I’d like for a general use knife, I suddenly remembered some small Vic steak and paring knives we had when I was a kid. They were a great cutter, always wicked sharp, but small and light.

Turns out I’m not the first to think of them for out of the kitchen use. Someone had beat me too it in a way, they’re popular in some circles as cheap disposable self defense knives. 

I find a knife(any knife) for self defense, quite honestly a stupid idea, but this helped because it shows these in nice sheaths! Kydex sheaths! More on that in a second..

For $5(inc. Shipping!) I can’t go wrong!

Amazingly a Victorinox paring knife costs less than an Old Hickory paring knife!

I can buy a kydex sheath for these things for from $20 to $35…  For a $5 knife. I don’t think so Tim! ;)

These are stolen from various places on the net… I’d give credit but can’t really remember where.( Kydex sheath for victorinox paring knife can be Googled, and should show where… that’s how I found them. )




I REALLY hate pressing kydex, but for $10 max in materials I already have, I’ll do it for this. ;)  

So, semi modular neck sheath will be seen here soon. :) Meant to do that in the shop last night but got side tracked.

And yeah honestly this won’t change what folders or anything else I carry or use… I like them, and that’s reason enough to use them. :) 

 But the thought concept/experiment of “all I need is sharp steel, not fancy steel” is fun to play around with every now and then. :)   that’s how I got my first Mora years ago.

And I had previously been wanting a small light field fixed blade anyway, so I might be finding it. We shall see!

 This really does seem great so far for a general utility blade,  both EDC and woods.

3.25″ blade, 4″ish handle.  Honestly still a little bigger than I had in mind. Seems they’ve changed in the last 20 years, little  bigger than they used to be, maybe 10% or 15%?

 

With Spirit for scale;

Will see how it goes, I can always re-grind the blade, and trim the handle.

Blade is thiiiiiinnnnnnnn. 

I thought it needed a fob. :)

Had this chunk of shimmery green acrylic pen blank in the shop, had previously made a bead from it, seemed fitting, so I made it one.

And no, none of it is zombie green…I HATE that fad!   I just get tired of the cliche neon orange or red for outdoor visibility. Went with green for bright but Different. 😀  

Categories: Custom, EDC, knives, Modifications, New Gear, Outdoors, Theory/Thoughts, Winter, Woods tools | 1 Comment

ATV plow, first use. 


Got 4″ of powder last Thursday night, finally enough to try out the ATV plow! 

 I built the mount, and had it all ready in early October of 2016. But the night I finished it, and went to test ride with it mounted, is the night the clutch went out. I didn’t know what to do with the clutch until spring of 2017, so the wheeler and plow sat unused all winter. I never got to try the plow until this weekend!

SO, Anyway, I used the Prairie to plow my yard and driveway Friday. Works great!  

One small section of drive plowed;

Took about the same amount of time as it does with my truck… Truck moves more in one pass, but takes more time to maneuver… The wheeler is smaller, easier to turn and has better visibility. But not as much power or blade size to move a lot at once. 50/50-90 kinda thing.  I’ll break it up from now on, truck for large bulk areas, wheeler for the tight spaces, trimming up. 

Did have one problem. The plow doesn’t have an upward stop for lifting the blade… Just where you stop the winch. So if you go too far, it just keeps pulling. Sometimes it’s hard to tell if you have it all the way up or not. 

Broke some welds on the mount pulling it up too far.  Will need to re-weld that, and make some sort of positive stop that hits the bumper or something, so I can tell for sure when to stop the winch.. 

I’m thinking just a upward angled bar braced off the plow, that would hit the bumper, and be a solid stop I’d feel. Maybe have it high enough that I could see it… Something like that. 

Got the main mount piece with the breaks inside melting/drying out now, will get it done and back on in the morning,  so I can plow the new 2″ or 3″ tomorrow afternoon. 

I’m really not surprised it broke… I’m only semi professionally trained at welding, still not real good at it, and this was done with a rather light welder for steal this heavy… 

 And it was being torqued at this area by a 2000# winch, with about 3′ of leverage added… It simply tried to hinge on the welds and sheared them, and is now hinging/flexing others.

 Looks like I missed welding straight across the back edges too, which would be a lot of loss of strength against pull in this direction.. Whoops.  

I’m actually happy it broke where it did. This piece is a 2″ receiver hitch mount, that goes into a 2″ receiver tube mounted on the wheeler. Breaking at the female side on the wheeler would have been a Lot bigger of a pain to fix! 

And the plow itself hinges onto this piece. Breaking the plow side would have been worse too, mainly for being able to get it into my heated shop where the bigger welder is set up, and I’d probably have gad to do a lot more re-engineering if part of that broke.

All in all, if it was going to break, it’s the best area for it.

This time I’ll full box all 4 edges where the two pieces stack,  maybe drill a couple holes in one and plug weld it down to the 2″ square tube… Maybe add a cross plate above the tube. And use a much bigger welder for more penetrating heat.

Yeah, apparently forgot to paint it against rusting before I parked it last year too… 

Anyway, onward to custom plow mounting 2.0!

Categories: Adventure Metal Works, Alaska-Life, ATV, ATV Accessories, ATVing, Automotive Work, Custom, custom-made-tools, Damages, Fabrication, GetOutdoors, Modifications, Outdoors, Scrounging, Vehicles, Welding, Winter | Leave a comment

Quartz to mechanical pocket watch conversion. V1.0

Back in mid May, I bought a cheap Chinese mechanical pocket watch. To be used as a movement donor, to fix one of my favorite quartz pocket watches that has bit the dust.  The quartz watch is special because it was one my Dad bought me.

I spent two days on ebay searching the watches for a dial/face I liked,  that was easy to read… Many mechanical watches have an unreadable color scheme,  or too much skeletonizing to be readable. 

I do like the dial in the quartz watch, but this process is a LOT easier if I don’t have to change the dial/hands between the movements. Or even remove them from the movements!


The project got shelved at the time. Then I realized how much I like the watch itself… The case is a little lightweight (cheap-ish) but it was nice enough, and went into rotation. Making it harder to canibalize for the other one.   

Every time I though of it, I put it off for various reasons.

Anyway. Today I was swapping watch chains around so I could carry my other mechanical pocket watch, and saw the quartz one on the shelf. Thought, gee wouldn’t it be nice to carry that one. And thinking how long it’s been since I carried the newer mechanical one… 

I thought oh why not, and took them apart right then. 

I always figured this would be a case of the mechanism not fitting, or the dial, or spacing ring etc, and turn out to be a real hassle to figure out.

At this point I did think that if nothing else, if it all went in ok, but the spacer ring didn’t fit, I could build a mount ring, or spacers with Sugru. 

Pulled the back covers first.

Measured the case diameters inside, quartz was 0.06″ smaller… PFFT! close enough!    

Pull plastic spacer rings, screw the crowns off (I need to find finer pliers for the next time, Victorinox Spirit tips were a bit big but worked great– you have to hold the inner shaft on the mech, and turn the crown off of it.) 

The mechanical dial was a touch smaller than the quartz one, but did fit ok. 

The mech. watches plastic ring fit the quartz case well enough, just had to whittle off some spacer nubs on its edge.. 

Room enough that the back plate went on too. 

Hands cleared the front glass. 

All perfect.

Except… 

The mechanical movement is thicker. By a few thousandths. So the stem shaft wouldn’t line up with the hole in the case/spring.  At least, not with out offsetting the dial in the case and binding the hands, and the crowns use.. 

I got that figured out with firm placement of the dial in place, and flexing/slightly bending the stem rod to line up, then starting the threads. Once started and seated it simply flexed the shafts where it needed it. 

Unfortunately…. (saw this coming, didn’t you?)

In the process,  I was handling a bare unprotected mechanical movement. That was running slightly… Somewhere I stopped it wrong, or pressed wrong,  or tweaked something… Ended up with a fine loop double up in the main spring/balance spring. 

Even if I could take it apart (oi.) I doubt I could straighten out the spring and make it work.  And I’d probably never get it back together right. 

So, at that point I had a half installed broken movement.  

I went ahead and finished the install, trimming the the plastic ring, etc.  

It all fits and would work great. If it still worked. Lol. 

So now I just need to order another of those watches to canibalize… A little more careful this time. 

Thankfully I’m only out about $12 on the broken one. It’ll still only be a $24 conversion! 😀 

Only took three pics of the whole process, will take more the next time. 


Mechanical spacer ring in quartz case;



The spring after I was done trying to push the loop out… Yeah. 😦


Categories: Custom, Damages, EDC, Improviser, MacGyver, mechanical, Modifications, New Gear, Sentimental, Sugru, Watches | 1 Comment

Thrunite TH20 Headlamp 

I use a headlamp A LOT. They’re worth their weight in gold for most forms of mechanical and automotive work, and a lot of maintenance and carpentry too.  

Dimly lit places where you need both hands free abound in most of the work, and play that I do.

It’s also dark 1/2 to 3/4 of the day for a good 6 months out of the year here.  I never go anywhere without a flashlight year round. But in the winter I never go without a headlamp as well.  I really do get that much use from one in general,  and I’ve found that 9 out of 10 emergencies/mishaps/adventures happen in the dark. 

 I decided after my moose hunting trip this year that I needed a newer, brighter headlamp.  The one I have works great, and has for about 10 years now. It’s bright enough and has taken anything I’ve thrown at it. 

But compared to what the other guys were using, it’s a candle to a locomotive!   LEDs have progressed a lot in the last decade, and even then this light is the older style bubble LED lamps.  

On the highest mode out of three, it’s a good 50 lumens at the most.  Enough for general work in pitch black, but at dusk it leaves a little to be desired. And sometimes more light is simply better in the deepest dark. 

So, I did some digging, research, and browsing but didn’t really get anywhere.  

Figured I’d post a thread @ the edc community forum soon, and ask for recamendations.   

I never got that far. 

In one guys thread a couple weeks later, he posted his new headlamp.  Two friends started asking questions about it, both also looking for something new. Within a few days they’d ordered theirs.   They both loved them. 

3 glowing reviews, and a feature set I liked, I couldn’t go wrong, I went ahead and ordered it!


Box contents;







With my older Browning light;



The specs on the Thrunite TH20;

Firely mode 0.3 lumen

Infinity low; 1.6 lumens

Infinity high; 230 lumens

Turbo high on an alkaline or Ni-MH AA; 250 lumens

Turbo high on an lithium ion 14500 rechargeable “AA”; 520 lumens (!)

The light is aluminum housed, and runs on a single AA cell, or a rechargeable 14500 cell. 

Now, you might be asking “what’s infinity mode?”  Put simply, the light doesn’t have previously set brightness levels for normal use. It has one mode, and an infinite adjustment within it.  Lowest is 1.6 lum, highest is 230. 

 Press and hold the switch and it slowly ramps up through the range, simply stop at the level of light you want!

Operation is simple. 

From Off, long press to get the firefly 0.3 lum mode. Regular press to turn off.

Also from Off, regular press goes to infinity mode, and the memory puts it at the last used brightness (so you don’t have to remember adjust every time). 

Long press in infinity mode ramps up till you stop. Next long press ramps down, and alternates every press.   Regular press to turn it off.

Fast double click from any mode gets Turbo. Double click from turbo gets you SOS flash. Regular press to turn off.

I really like the infinite adjuster! I can get just the light I want, and it’s easy to go up or down.  Sometimes preset modes are either too bright or too dim, depending on where you are, what reflects the light etc. This I can adjust easily,  up or down as needed. 

I gained some durability with aluminum over plastic (although the plastic has never been any trouble even in rough use, and extreme temperatures).  

It turns out just slightly heavier than the other light, being AA and metal, but the other is 3 AAAs which are the same or more bulk, and it was bigger overall.. It evens out very well between them. 

The Browning has a pad on the back for against the head, while the TH20 is rubber mounted, no pad, but just as comfortable.  

The Browning has 3 click set angle adjustments. The TH20 is an infinite angle, set simply by rotating it in the rubber holder. 

The Browning has a very “cool” light output, an blue tint.  A tint that bothered me at first, but I got used to it, hadn’t really noticed it for years.    The TH20 comes in either a warm, or cool tint emiter, your choice. I chose the warmer, more yellow, natural light tint, since I prefer not to have the blue tint whenever possible. 

One big gain is the change to one battery. AAAs are easy to find in general,  but if your scrounging them in an emergency finding three of them can be a pain. Most devices that take them only run two.   

Finding a single AA on the other hand is relatively easy! They are more common, and like AAAs, most devices run on two of them. 

Lots of subtle differences,  but all gains.

I have the infinity mode set at about the same light level, or a little brighter than high on the Browning, which was my most used mode. I’d guess around 75 or 85 lumens… It’s a distinctive jump to Turbo, but dimmer than 100 lum.   

I’m running it on an Energizer Ni-MH rechargeable AA cell, the same voltage as a alkaline AA. So my turbo is only 250 lumens. I don’t yet have a 14500 cell to use, to get the 500+lumen turbo mode.

Overall, I’m extremely pleased.  An excellent light, especially for its cost. I’d have paid a lot more for the quality, build, and features. This is only a $30 light! 

http://www.thrunite.com/thrunite-th20-high-output-and-light-weight-aa-battery-led-headlamp/

Categories: EDC, Flashlights, New Gear, Outdoors, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Field Holster; chest carry. 

I’d decided that I need a new holster for my .357. (Vintage Ruger Security Six, 4″). Field holster I guess you’d say… I don’t concealed carry often anymore, just open carry for hunting/hiking. 


Until recently I’ve done belt carry, have a great pancake holster from Simply Rugged that works phenominally. 

But I can’t do belt carry anymore;
Problem #1, it kills my screwed up hips, and #2 at current weight loss level/clothing sizing, keeping my pants up is impossible with the weight of a gun…Hell, it’s hard enough without the gun. Lol. (belt tight enough to hold it all up, cuts into back/hips too much, back to problem #1)

I’ve tried regular shoulder holsters. No go. Got a leather Galco “miami classic” style for a full size auto, have had it a decade, worn it a total of maybe ten times. 

Borrowed a buddies Uncle Mikes vertical nylon job for hunting last month. Wore it once. Rode ok once adjusted, but where it was secure and somewhat comfortable, I couldn’t reach the gun to draw it! 

I’ve had nylon ones twice in the past before. Got a great vintage Bianchi leather job that a good friend gave me, but it’s too big for this gun(actually hoping to convert it to chest or bandoleer carry for my .41 mag Blackhawk ). 

Anyway, I can Never get any slight semblance of comfortable, or secure, at the same time, and never an easy draw either way… 

Add to that the layers of straps you get with the holster, a backpack, and a rifle sling while out and about in the woods… Just no. There’s too much of the world sitting on my shoulders anyway, don’t need to add more! ;)

I’ve thought about a bandoleer setup, but that ends up on the hip cross draw… hard to reach (yes, I still have a bit of a spare tire to reach around, and add a heavy jacket, forget it!) and in a place that would interfere with backpacks, pack frames, and I think a slung rifle.. 

So, my last ditch idea is to attempt to try a chest rig… 

They’re actually extremely popular up here in AK for bear country fishing, and some hunting. 

Yes it hangs on shoulder straps, at least one..but the weight sits on the chest, not under the armpits. And it should pull on the back more than straight down on the shoulders.. I think. I’m thinking it will be more secure feeling and more accessible. And probably more comfortable, leave me some range of arm movement without under arm binding. (Hopefully!)  

So, a couple weeks digging around, and some fantastic suggestions from friends on a forum, and I made a choice. 

I ordered a holster last week. I’d seen these before, and looked at them off and on, but wasn’t sure.

But I decided for the cost –About $40– I couldn’t really go wrong.. If nothing else I could modify the snot out of it. ;)

But really, I decided I needed something low cost to try, to see if chest carry was even the answer, without dropping $70 to $150 depending. Expensive risk, if it turned out chest carry wasn’t my thing.

So, the make is Skyball Mountain Holsters. Amazingly, made in USA. Only places I can find them are Facebook and Ebay, apparently it’s a small business, no dedicated website.

I dug around and found out that the current Ruger GP100 is super close in size to a Security Six, so I ordered the one for a 4″ barrel GP100.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/262234099076

It fits the gun perfectly! 
(Being a open non formed holster, it actually fits All of my mid frame ~4″ hand guns almost perfectly!)

These are built a little different than the average chest harness. The average seems to be an around the body horizontal strap, then the holster sits on that or straps down to it. Then the shoulder strap goes over and attaches to the horizontal strap on your back.

This one is the horizontal strap, and then the shoulder strap goes around from the holster, and BACK TO the holster…

It works. But it adds another strap crossing under your arm, and for me it’s a bit uncomfortable crossing that high under my arm. (I’ve a bit of fat there and it presses in anoyingly)

But even having said that, this thing is SUPER comfortable!! 

I threw it on with the 357 over a light hoodie a few nights ago, and went out and split a days worth of firewood. 45 minutes swinging a splitting maul, lifting, moving logs, etc. and I only had to reposition it a few times. That’s pretty upper body active, more so than any average time I’d normally be wearing a gun.


My only little problem is the way it sits, all the tension is pulling to the left side… The straps don’t hold it to the right if it’s pulled left. But it’s a left hand draw. So it drifts left during draw. Grabbing it with the right hand durring draw fixes it obviously. But I might not always have that hand free, so it needs a hold down strap on the right.

There is a loop on the barrel end of the holster (probably for a hold down), so adding a short cord, I’m thinking shock cord for a little movement, should be easy, run down to my belt.

One other thing, not really a problem, is the chest strap, on me, is extended almost all the way out. Not a design flaw, I’m just a big guy. So I’ll have to get an extension strap for wearing it over a heavy coat. It’s all 1″ strap, and all ends are held with SRBs, so it’ll be easy/cheap to add/remove as needed. The shoulder strap on the other hand, oddly has like another 10″ of outward adjustment, it’ll be fine.

Overall, I really like it. It works, and is verry comfortable. 


As to mods, I’m trying to find the site I saw a T shaped side release buckle on recently… 

It was simple the male or female side of the buckle, but the strap side had the slots on it at a 90 to the buckle… So you can slide it to any place on a strap and have the buckle T off. It was for camping/hiking packs, like to add a sternum strap or similar. Just can’t find it again! 

Anyway, was thinking one of those or similar on the around the chest strap, put it in the back, and clip the shoulder strap into it, doing away with the under arm strap. 

I’ll wear it/use it a while as is and if I don’t get used to that strap there, I’ll look into moddling it. But for now it’s fine!

Fat guy in a holster;

[​IMG]

My view;

[​IMG]

And the bonus, I can pick and chose what I want to carry;

4-5/8″ Blackhawk;

[​IMG]

Ruger MK2;

[​IMG]

Beretta Stamped SAA;
(3.5″ barrel us a little short in there, but I think it’ll balance ok/hang ok)

[​IMG]

Browning BDM 9mm;
(Which is great for now since this is my usual winter woods carry gun. No bears then so I don’t need the .357 etc.)

[​IMG]

:)

Categories: Adventures, Alaska-Life, ATV, ATV Accessories, ATVing, Backcountry, Clothes, GetOutdoors, Guns, Hunting, Life-Philosophy, New Gear, Outdoors, Woods tools | 2 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: