Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Fun with machines...

I've been immersed in machines recently. First, my wife surprised me by purchasing this Honda Trail 70 motorcycle. This little minibike has become quite a collector's item. The Trail 70 was made in the early 70's. It's a small motorcycle intended for riding trails and fields (not like a dirt bike). My family had one when my brother and I were growing up, and we both have fond memories of riding around the campgrounds on our weekend camping trips. (My brother probably has fonder memories, since I only remember forgetting how to slow down and running it into a tree. But that's beside the point). At one point, our parents asked us if we should keep it, and we both said "no." It was sold.

Since reaching adulthood and realizing how stupid that was, we've been searching for one. They've been coveted little bikes, so the prices have gone sky high. My wife found one on the "For Sale" bulletin board at her office and showed me the pictures. I said "We gotta buy it!" A week or two later, I had forgotten about it, but she secretly negotiated the sale and it is now ours. Hopefully, we'll be picking it up this week sometime.

I've also been playing with a little lawn tractor like this one:

This is an old John Deere 111 Lawn Tractor that my dad bought for me a few years ago. I wasn't using it so my father in law took it for a while, and now I've got it back. The thing leaks oil like you wouldn't believe, won't hold air in the tires, and the blades are so dull they wouldn't cut a piece of cheese. I've begun tearing it down in my garage and hope to have a decent little mower by the time I'm done. I believe I've located the leak (a gasket on the engine block), and the blades can be easily sharpened or replaced. Add some new tires and the thing will be a nice lawn tractor. I'm not sure if I'll keep it or sell it, but I look forward to getting it back to respectability.

Also, check out my brother-in-law's tractor:

He let me drive it around the lawn over the weekend. Fun! It really, really turns on a dime!

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