Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Rotten Stringers & Waste Wicks

I Solved 2 significant problems this week.

[1] Rotten Stringers

For 22 years, this ramp has served us well.
But the stringers laying in the dirt finally rotted,
and the ramp crumbled.

It was a hot sweaty job to remove and salvage the boards. It amazed me how long the ramp stayed usable, considering how soft and rotten the stringers had become.

I will need some rock for 'filler'.

Nothing comes easy -
so I haul the heavy rocks on a cart

Dig a trench in the rocky terrain, using a steel bar, pick-ax, and shovel.
                    Then build a form for the cement.
                                          Carry the gravel & water in 5-gallon pails, up from the lake
                                                                   Now mix the cement by hand.
Let the cement cure for a week. Then screw the boards onto the new stringers.
Now the finesse work.  There is nothing level or flat with natural rock, so I'll build rock & mortar cobblestones to connect the ramp to the bedrock path. 

Someday when we're old we'll appreciate walking on this smooth level surface.

The 'repair' should last the rest of my lifetime, because I really don't want to do this job again. Ever.

[2] Waste Wicks

This was a sweaty and strenuous job in hot weather.  I was concerned with 'sweating off my flange', having much difficulty with this while trekking in Nepal. I shared this story as Ostomates Only - Heat Induced.

I had talked with Gordon Scott of Ostomy Armor  about his new Waste Wicks.  While these Waste Wicks were originally designed to reduce emergencies by 'mopping up minor leaks', we thought they could also be effective in mopping up the sweat between ostomy-pouch and skin. 

So I stress-tested these Waste Wicks during the 'rotten stringers' project.

First day, with a new flange and no Waste Wick, I sweated the flange off. 

Next day, with a new flange and doing similar work at the same hot temperature, I used a Waste Wick and the flange stayed on. 

For 4 days I worked hard in the hot sun, and the Waste Wick did its job - preventing 'sweating off the flange'. I got normal flange wear-time, even under very hot and sweaty conditions!

I have also used the Waste Wicks for soaking up the sweat playing hockey for the past several months. Same positive results - no 'sweating off the flange' and normal flange wear-time, even under very sweaty conditions!

... And an amazing sunset at the end of the day

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing. My son is an underground miner who is going though a tough patch and may need surgery. We're gathering any info we can get to reassure him life isn't over. I wish you well and again, thanks for sharing.