Well, not quit, quit, but hang ‘er up for awhile to regroup. Let me explain. Yesterday afternoon was a gorgeous fall day. The sun was out, making the colors of the autumn trees brilliant and the moist warm soil simply smell wonderful. Definitely a time to do something outdoors.
I was working in the house, getting ready to can up some on-sale turkey breasts and David took the bulldozer down the hill to do some clearing in front of his main deer stand. During the three years we’ve been here, those little popple trees went from shoulder high little wisps to twenty foot high bushy tree trees. There were also some large bunches of alder and a few fir trees that needed to be cleared out of the area to ensure a good shooting lane in several directions. No one wants to shoot a deer they can’t see at least a good portion of.
When I finished working, I went down to help David chain up the trees and watched as he pulled them out just like I pull weeds out of the garden rows. That 1010 John Deere has plenty of power without even thinking about it. I can only be a few minutes outside at a time because I don’t dare leave Mom home alone, so I jumped on the four wheeler and went back up the hill to check on her. I told David he shouldn’t take the crawler across the little creek closer to his stand. It was getting late in the afternoon and I didn’t want problems.
So of course when I came back, where was the crawler? Yep. Well it was going okay, but I just had this feeling….. And when he turned around in tight quarters, the track hit a stump and peeled off. Ker-screech. Nifty…… The rear end was down in the swampy creek and the blade was up on high ground.
We worked until almost dark with a huge pry bar (tanker’s bar), raising the front end of the dozer up with the down pressure on the blade. Then David had the idea of releasing the grease pressure in the tightening arm to let the grease out that provides track tension. To do this, he unscrewed the bolt that is on top of the assembly. Sure enough, when he shoved back on the front wheel and track, the assembly slid backwards, a big gob of grease popped out the top. So he did it twice more, shoving against it for all he was worth. Lots of grease and the tension was much less.
I wanted to read the shop manual first, but it was almost dark and what the heck, maybe the kid’s right?
Right. Well, we got the track back on and went to re-fill the grease by pumping it into the special fitting with the factory grease gun made for that purpose. But as we pumped, it was evident we were out of grease! Had to gently back it out the way it was and go to town this morning for more grease.
We returned all gung ho, but were quickly shot down when grease not only went into the fitting but ran out in a steady stream from a hole underneath. At this point I went back up and read the shop manual. What we should have done last night was to unscrew the cap bolt SLIGHTLY to allow the grease to escape from the hole underneath. Oh oh!
I talked to my friend Will, in Washington, and he said he thinks there was a little spring/ball valve in there that blew out with that first big gob of grease. Oh great. I went back down and dug around in the piles of grease that I could find. Nothing.
To make a long story short, we put the track on like five times totalled and got kind of smart by jaming a heavy bolt against the tightener to hold the tensioner tight enough to drive it up the hill, back home. David almost made it too, but near the top, the bolt bent and….you guessed it, the track came off again. Now we’re talking about a track that weighs probably four hundred pounds here and it’s NOT handy to handle.
We’d just about had enough of the bulldozer for the day and just parked it. We quit. Kind of. Tomorrow I’ll call a John Deere parts dealer and find out what we need and get it ordered. In the mean time, we’ll have a mental health vacation for a couple of days. Read the directions first!
Canning goat’s milk
I have a question that may or may not be able to be answered. I have nubian does in milk and want to can some of their milk. There are directions for this in my Goats Produce Too book to both use a
hwb or pressure canner. However, I would also like to can sweetened condensed milk. Would the addition of the sugar change the canning time? (Goat’s produce says to can at 15 lbs. pressure for 10 minutes)
No. The addition of sugar won’t affect the processing time of your milk. I process my milk at 11 pounds pressure for 10 minutes, but it would depend on your altitude. I live at 1,500 feet above sea level. But when I lived in Montana, I was at 7,400 feet and processed everything at 15 pounds pressure. — Jackie