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mechanism mock-up, preparing for more floor work, diner - Rounding up the Usual Suspects
Steve's Livejournal
mechanism mock-up, preparing for more floor work, diner
I've done some brainstorming over how to build a mechanism to lift a bookshelf onto heavy-duty casters, keeping it level enough that it doesn't tip. I came up with a design that doesn't hurt the floors or require too much muscle power, but after much research I concluded that I don't know how to do the engineering to calculate whether the mechanism is certain to snap with budging, perform perfectly but be expensively over-built, or worst, appear solid in use but explode into splinters without warning.

So, rather than try to find a structural engineer who knows how to calculate the breaking strength of a wooden structure with wooden parts, I decided to build a mock-up. My reasoning is that if it works with cheap lumber, it will be completely sturdy with good hickory. (According to my research, hickory is the strongest wood that's not absurdly expensive – almost ten times stronger than framing lumber.) If it collapses into splinters, I will have to adjust the design.

So, this morning I went to a lumber store to buy some cheap wood. I couldn't find the stuff I had planned to buy (pine "common boards", which is not too strong, but but also stronger than framing lumber), so I had to recalculate the amount of wood for the type available. It worked out that I can get the entire mock-up out of a single eight foot two-by-six, just over $7.

But instead of building the mock-up, I worked on a few more immediate projects. One was to get a bid for some textured surface for our sloped cedar boardwalk, which is a nicely built (and probably over-engineered) ramp that's treacherous during the rainy season. (And in Seattle, the rainy season is actually three seasons long.) Along with that I requested a bid for the same stuff on our cellar ramp. The manufacturer of the stuff has a great brand name: Slip Not.

The other task above the priority of the mock-up was to clear out stuff that I had stacked in the way of finishing the office floor. (The stuff had been stacked on a nice old bookshelf, but "J" wanted the bookshelf so I had to put the stuff somewhere.) I found a sad-looking old shelf in the garage and stacked the stuff on it. (Now J said she wants the sad old shelf for garden tools, but not enough to claim it before the office floor is done.)

In the afternoon, J had an appointment near our favorite diner. The appointment went smoothly, and we indulged in a yummy brunch there afterwards.

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