tased by a digital camera
Tuesday, July 22 2008
I've had moderate success getting my GE digital camera working again after accidentally getting sand into it at the recent Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival. The key was to use the suction end of my ever-versatile shopvac. Still, though, there remained some sand between the LCD and its protective cover and I wanted to get it out. So I disassembled the camera into various pieces (a much easier task than diassembling a Canon Powershot) and slurped at it more with the shopvac. Then, though, I felt a strange tingling in my fingers as I held it. Could a digital camera really be shocking me? Then, bzzzap! I found myself involuntarily flinging it part way across the room. The little bitch had tased me, bro! The camera was still working after this ordeal, though not quite as well. I also found myself handling it much more gingerly, avoiding the exposed contacts of the 220 volt/20 microfarad capacitor storing the flash charge. I'm sure that's what had zapped me.
I spent most of the day putting bluestone on the front (north) and west sides of the woodstove pedestal, starting with a carefully-cut piece of local bluestone I'm using as a door to cover a small match/tool storage shelf in the front. Using epoxy and tiny bolts, I'd attached hinges to the side of this rectangle, and once I had it hung, I could start attaching the fixed pieces of bluestone that will be on either side of it. Wherever possible, I tried to take advantage of natural straight edges in the bluestone fragments as I framed the sides of the hinged bluestone door. I reserved the unnaturally sharp cut edges for the unseen places at the top and bottom edges of the arrangement.
I always forget how nasty it is to work with a wet saw. Because of the way I hold my head as I make an unguided cut, the blade tends to fling its emulsion of ground up bluestone and water onto the line of symmetry between the left and right side of my face. This line continues down my neck, chest, and ends as a wide stripe somewhere on my belly. This bothers me only insofar as it puts chalky debris in my mouth and ruins the view through my eye protection goggles. Others, though (including Gretchen and our neighbor Andrea, who popped in randomly) were mostly alarmed by my appearance, which Andrea thought resembled a so-called mud person (not in the David Duke sense of the word).
My wet saw could only cut to a depth of an inch or so, and so when I needed to slice up a thicker slab for the front of one of the two pull-out drawers, I had to resort to a handsaw spinning a diamond wet saw blade. Since 11 amp power handsaws are not safe for working in wet environments, I had to do it dry.
I have two handsaws. One is a Craftsman saw I've had since 1990, which I used in the construction of the Shaque. The other is a Black and Decker saw which I bought in 2002 to help with working on this house. One of these two saws has ruined bearings and is called "The Fucked Saw" and is used "only for nasty shit." Can you guess which one it is? Hint: if it were human, it wouldn't be old enough to drive. I only use the Black and Decker for dubious jobs such as dry sawing bluestone with a diamond wet saw blade.
Eventually, though, I was able to cut a piece of bluestone measuring 11.5 by 24 inches, and I attached it to the front of one of the pedestal drawers using six screws and a perhaps a whole cup of mortar-like tile adhesive. Surprisingly, the drawer worked perfectly with its heavy new front.
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