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Something Wonderful: Make It New



And now it’s your turn:

Man Ray, Cadeau 1921,

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  • mmack July 15, 2022, 5:05 PM


    Thanks 🙏🏻 for the video. I love seeing items being restored, especially airplanes ✈️ or cars 🚗. An iron is pretty darn cool too.

    As my Greatest Generation parents heard:

    Use it up
    Wear it out
    Make it last
    Or do without

    Good to see they made it last. 👍🏻

  • Cynyr July 15, 2022, 5:38 PM

    That’s a great channel, been following him for years. He’s in Switzerland, is a master machinist, and makes a good living from hos videos.

  • ghostsniper July 15, 2022, 7:09 PM


  • Jack Lawson July 15, 2022, 7:31 PM

    We did this to EVERYTHING from dry-cleaning equipment, laundromat washers and dryers, every tractor, truck and piece of farm machinery, dump trucks and Caterpillar equipment we owned.

    Take them apart to the last bolt and screw, sandblast, re-wire, paint and reassemble them.

    Looked better than new… but it was more than fun in that barn sized shop on my Father’s Minnesota farm a mile north of my hometown. Lots of friends, beer and brandy too!

    This brings back a lot of memories. Probably why I have difficulty throwing sturdily made items away. Learned ALL the trades there.

    No wonder the latest generation needs Communism… they don’t know which is the business end of a screwdriver.

    Jack Lawson
    Associate Member, Sully H. deFontaine Special Forces Association Chapter 51, Las Vegas, Nevada
    Author of “The Slaver’s Wheel”, “A Failure of Civility,” “And We Hide From The Devil,” “Civil Defense Manual” and “In Defense.”
    “There are three kinds of people in this world. Them that think they have learned by education, them that learn by observation and doing, and there’s them fellers that just have to piss on the electric fence, and find out for themselves!” – Changed slightly by me, but a Will Roger’s quote.
    From Jack Lawson… an American in 1RLI Support Commando and attached to Rhodesian “C Squadron” SAS Africa 1977-79

    • Vanderleun July 15, 2022, 8:19 PM

      “No wonder the latest generation needs Communism… they don’t know which is the business end of a screwdriver.”

      One hopes that, in time, they get a very pointed lesson about the business end of a screwdriver. You could buy a couple of hundred at Harbor Freight so cheaply that you could just bury them all twice and walk away.

    • ghostsniper July 16, 2022, 8:04 AM

      I fix shit all the time. So often that I usually don’t even take note of it. Been this way all my life and I suppose I got that gene from my dad who was a fixer extraordinaire. Why do I fix shit rather than pitching it and buying another, or hiring someone to fix shit that can’t be pitched? First, it’s faster. Ever try to hire someone to fix something? They might be able to get to it next week. Second, it’s less expensive. Nobody works less expensive than you, so you may as well fix it yourself and go buy a case of your favorite with what you didn’t spend.

      I’ve spent a lifetime collecting tools and learning how to use them, and I collect all manner of things just in case I need them in the future. When I need a 1/2″ x 2″ bolt-nut-washers from the hardware store I don’t buy just the one I need. I buy a whole box of 100 of all of them. Most tools I have at least 2 of them. Some how I have (8) 9/16″ box wrenches. shrug

      This past Monday I had to fix the porch floor in front of the front door. I built that porch with my own 2 hands 15 years ago and I built it to last longer than me. Now, I had to disassemble part of it because, in 2 years, this is the 2nd time that a possum crawled up under the floor and died. The smell was atrocious as you can imagine. The porch floor is too close to the ground to get to that carcass underneath, so the boards had to come up. The boards are 5/4×5-1/2″ PT deck boards and they were drilled and screwed to the joists with 3-1/2″ long star socket deck screws, slightly countersunk below the surface so the snow shovel won’t hit them. Over time the deck boards have swollen slightly, hiding those screw heads. Getting them out was difficult. Plus, when I build that floor I used the longest boards I could get, 18 footers. I ended up having to free-hand cut the boards in mid-air with the 7-1/4″ circular saw, which, if you’ve done that, can be unnerving. That 40 tooth blade tends to catch and jump at full throttle.

      Once the boards were up I could look down between the joists to find that possum, which was elusive. It wasn’t where I thought it was, so more boards had to come up. Last time I did this my mutt Shannon was a big help with her sniffer in finding the culprit. She’s been sick for the past 2 weeks (better now) and her sniffer wasn’t workin right. So I finally found the possum and I was surprised at it’s advanced state of decomposition. Hair, bones, and liquid. Very little meat. Strange. The smell was ghastly, so I had to work quick all the time. And the flies. And the maggots.

      I used the big red snow shovel and a hoe to haul it up out of there in one fell scoop. Right into a black trashbag lined amazon box, then carried back to the property line at the rear of our property about 300 feet away. (2 years on, the other box/bag/possum was set in the same place and now it is completely gone. Nothing left at all. Mother nature is a mad scientist! Now the repair work can start. The repair was unremarkable and the whole episode took maybe an hour or so. That smell lingered for a day or 2 and I swear it embedded itself into my nasal linings and even still crops up now and then. Do nasal passages have latent memories?

      Next up was the skimmer for the pool. At 15 years old it finally gave way. It was sort of cheaply made in the first place and my wife had already purchased a new one. But I hate to throw shit away. So, a couple dabs of PVC pipe glue to fasten the net back to the plastic frame where it had pulled loose. Clamp and let sit for a few mins. The skimmer has a small plastic “handle” that was screwed onto a long aluminum pipe handle and the plastic part had split and was wobbly. I grabbed a piece of 1″ pvc pipe from my scrap bin, split it end to end on one side with the dremel, then fit it over the joint (splint) where the plastic connected to the aluminum. Drilled 2 quarter inch holes through it and installed through bolts with washers and nuts. Done.

      Next up was a battery powered Shark vacuum sweepr that no longer held a charge. Seemingly. Turns out, the charger was bad. Went through my box of old chargers from the past 30 years and none were quite right. So, since I have a lot of Ryobi 18v tools and some old batteries and chargers, I decided to try to make an adapter out of all this stuff so that the Shark would run off of Ryobi 18v batteries. I knew I could do this cause I did the same thing with a Black n Decker 12v blower a couple years ago. (unfortunately the Ryobi 18v batteries were too much for the B&D 12v blower motor and I quickly blew the commutator. (fried it)) So yeah, it’s not as purty as it used to be but the Shark is back on it’s fins and the wife has used it several times now. She said it feels more powerful somehow. Turns out the Ryobi batteries have more amp hours than the old ones.

      Anyway, fixing goes on around here all the time, sort of as a matter of habit meeting need. I have a severe addiction to doing shit with my hands and figuring stuff out with my head. Can’t help it, I was born this way. Now, I have a big bucket of dirty red shop rags sitting over there that aren’t going to jump in that washing machine theirselves.

  • chicagobob July 15, 2022, 9:00 PM

    I use phosphoric acid, it removes the rust and doesn’t attach the metal as much as muriatic acid.

  • Terry July 15, 2022, 10:37 PM

    One of my grandfathers was a blacksmith. His shop was on the same property as the family home. His favorite hobby was boxing.

    So all of us kids learned to operate the blacksmith equipment, forges, anvils, anvil tooling and heat treating, etc. And for relaxation we boxed.

  • jd July 16, 2022, 7:44 AM

    “Something wonderful” in so many ways not the least of which is that the artist (?)
    is Swiss (I’m half-Swiss). Where else but here would we see (unless subscribing) that particular video if not for American Digest and its artist ?

    “6-12 Hours a Day, 7 Days a Week, 20 years. I’m taking the rest of the day off.
    by VANDERLEUN on JULY 10, 2022”

    This artist deserves a steady income.

  • KCK July 16, 2022, 9:33 AM

    The iron restoration is amazing and has an interesting aesthetic quality to it. I have a bunch of unconnected responses to this post.

    I particularly like how he has to lathe a new large component part. My father in law and brother in law are farmers, and have 2 LARGE lathes. If you can’t source a part for an engine repair, you make your own part. And tools. From scratch.

    Who irons clothes, nowadays? I do on occasion, and I also iron cotton paper if it gets a wrinkle.

    I have a 1930’s print article of Man Ray photography, which is a rarity and is valuable enough that I store it with fine art originals by master artists in my collection. Nudes, not irons.

    I hate sanding.

    • jiminalaska July 16, 2022, 11:41 AM

      I’ve Dover’s 9 1/2 by 12 inch 105 works by Man Ray on the top shelf, six and a half feet up, of my art books section. I just noticed it’s twix Alberto Martini’s Renor and Bernard Soulié’s Japanese Eroticism. Hum.

      I don’t hate sanding but I would put it two steps below chain saw sharpening. 🙂

  • Diana July 17, 2022, 10:18 AM

    As a wife I appreciate this kind of work. My husband is very handy like the man on the video. Later I repay him with homemade pie and homemade whipped cream.
    Thanks for sharing his talent.