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Previous owners and their plumbing!

Old 08-31-20, 09:25 PM
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Hondo Gravel
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Previous owners and their plumbing!

mostly Was fixing a busted water faucet no big deal dig it up replace to leaking pvc parts. But it was on a T on the main water line for a lawn faucet! And all local hardware stores are closed! You branch off the main line with a cut off valve for lawn faucets! Now I have to dig a hole the size of a crater to fix it. One of the pvc slider things I donít know what they are called. Real fun in the 102 degree heat. No water in the house but half of the place has water. Because I reconstructed the bonehead plumbing because if a simple faucet away from the house needed repair I would have to shut down all the water! GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR! One night without indoor water inconvenient but not that terrible. I just filled up some containers for the toilet etc etc. I have outside water because I made a jury rigged water cap. Took a bath using a garden hose in the backyard good thing Iím in the boonies.
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Old 08-31-20, 09:55 PM
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Hmmmm, So how close would you say your closest neighbors are?
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Old 08-31-20, 09:57 PM
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You don't have a mains shut off? How does the city/county or whoever shut off your water if you stop paying?
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Old 08-31-20, 09:57 PM
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1/4 mile. If I was caught on a game camera I guess that got some fodder on me
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Old 08-31-20, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
You don't have a mains shut off? How does the city/county or whoever shut off your water if you stop paying?
I have my own water well. It has a main shut off. I have other shut off valves in various places that I installed over the years. Just have to pay the electric for the water pump. Spoiled when it comes to water usage.
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Old 08-31-20, 10:05 PM
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My house was a fixer up, in which I had to do considerable upgrades and repairs to. I affectionately call my house the Winchester Mystery House Part 2, since I never know what I'm going to find. So far I keep finding numerous beer cans under the floor, under the house, in the attic, or digging them up in the yard.
It seems that Burgermeister and Coors were the choice of whistle wetters of the day, and I can easily tell what part of the day when the work was done to the house by the "slight" deviations from code work.
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Old 08-31-20, 10:16 PM
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I can't believe it's still 102 degrees down there. I was cold for a lot of yesterday, somebody else woke up to frost on his tent. Summer ended about two weeks ago, which is a shame because it only started about four weeks ago.
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Old 08-31-20, 10:19 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
I can't believe it's still 102 degrees down there. I was cold for a lot of yesterday, somebody else woke up to frost on his tent. Summer ended about two weeks ago, which is a shame because it only started about four weeks ago.
A few more days of 100+ then we will get a cold snap of lower 90s I just ate 4 pickles to get some salt my legs and back were cramping. Pickles takes care of that. Sweating gallons today.
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Old 08-31-20, 10:24 PM
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The people that built the house in 2002 did a great job with everything but the crazy plumbing. The guy is a hydrologist with a degree from Texas Tech! So I get all because he knows better. But yeah find mystery beer cans I didn’t drink So I wonder if the beer and lazy plumbing are playing a role.
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Old 08-31-20, 10:25 PM
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Ok, a quarter mile is pretty good.
I’m actually kinda envious, especially nowadays.
Holed up outside of NYC for the time being and I still have neighbors practically on top of me on three sides...
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Old 08-31-20, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Hondo Gravel View Post
The people that built the house in 2002 did a great job with everything but the crazy plumbing. The guy is a hydrologist with a degree from Texas Tech! So I get all because he knows better. But yeah find mystery beer cans I didnít drink So I wonder if the beer and lazy plumbing are playing a role.
Could be worse. I found an 80's skin mag and a homemade bong (Lowenbrau) bottle when doing some drop ceiling work last year.
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Old 08-31-20, 10:29 PM
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Being cold sucks.
I’ll take temps in the 90s/100s any day over the cold.
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Old 08-31-20, 10:30 PM
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Originally Posted by skijor View Post
Could be worse. I found an 80's skin mag and a homemade bong (Lowenbrau) bottle when doing some drop ceiling work last year.
Good Score haha!
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Old 08-31-20, 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Hondo Gravel View Post
I have my own water well. It has a main shut off. I.
Doh. I more carefully read your story and obviosly I misunderstood the first time. Got it now.

I grew up in a home with well water from up a hill across the street and a pump in the basement. One drought summer we (that means us kids) drained it playing day after day with the hose. Well... our neighbors further down the hill had city water - it was the last home on the road that did. So we (that means the parents) strung together a half dozen or so garden hoses and fed city water from their spigot into ours. It was the best water pressure we ever had.

We had a nice cool weekend in the high 90s' with monsoon storms that fizzled before they rained here, so just dust and smoke from nearby fires. But it signals the start of fall and the end of 115's I suppose.

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Old 08-31-20, 10:59 PM
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Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
Doh. I more carefully read your story and obviosly I misunderstood the first time. Got it now.

I grew up in a home with well water from up a hill across the street and a pump in the basement. One drought summer we (that means us kids) drained it playing day after day with the hose. Well... our neighbors further down the hill had city water - it was the last home on the road that did. So we (that means the parents) strung together a half dozen or so garden hoses and fed city water from their spigot into ours. It was the best water pressure we ever had.

We had a nice cool weekend in the high 90s' with monsoon storms that fizzled before they rained here, so just dust and smoke from nearby fires. But it signals the start of fall and the end of 115's I suppose.

Makes 102 a cold snap. I guess getting older the heat beats me down more. My younger self didn’t notice until I got my annual bout of heat illness The municipal water in town about 8 miles away has superior water pressure with that huge tank several feet up on the water tower. Gravity is the way to go.

Last edited by Hondo Gravel; 08-31-20 at 11:02 PM. Reason: Heat related poor grammar
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Old 09-01-20, 12:12 AM
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Yeah, it finally got crazy hot here. I rode 50 miles Saturday and the temperature peaked around 126F, according to my bike computer, but *only* 106F according to Google. Two days later I'm still too tired to ride. I drank plenty of water but it was kinda stupid riding 4 hours in that heat.

While I miss my former rural home, I don't miss the repairs and maintenance. It's practically nonstop. My grandparents built it and while granddad was meticulous about adhering to standards for the structure itself, over the years I discovered he took some shortcuts with plumbing and electrical wiring. They were in an unincorporated rural county with no zoning restrictions, so he may not have been aware that some of the contractors he used were incompetent or taking shortcuts.

They had two wells and two septic tanks, dug, plumbed and wire at different times. Each showed significant differences in competence and function.

I suspect my great aunt's husband must have "helped" with some of the wiring and plumbing. It showed some of the same farm-rigged cheapskatery as his own home next door: a complete lack of electrical grounding in the barn; some plastic plumbing intended for mobile homes, buried underground around the well. Years later after he sold that place the relatives who inherited it were constantly trying to patch things together. Eventually the plumbing failed and flooded the house. They just let it rot. Shame, because it was a nice little lake cottage, kinda crude but really only needed to have the plumbing and wiring redone. The structure itself was fine and he used good solid wood paneling indoors. Kinda looked like an old fashioned captain's cabin on a ship.

I can't remember any emergency repairs in good weather. It was always during a thunderstorm, 100+ heat, sub freezing cold, etc. Or at least it seemed that way.
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Old 09-01-20, 12:25 AM
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Whoever bought the house I grew up in, holy crap. Pre-PVC, we're talking iron. My dad's idea of plumbing repair was various kinds of putty, goop, tape, epoxy, clamps, and inevitably a container under every p-trap to catch the drips. He was a numbers guy, a human computer back in the day when such people were needed. Number crunchers should not be allowed in hardware stores. The absolute worst thing that could happen to us was being ordered to hold the flashlight while he attempted a plumbing repair. There's nothing quite like an angry accountant trying to fix leaky plumbing, demanding a 9 year old bend the light around his head onto just the right spot. More fun were his electrical skills. Rumor had it when he wasn't sleuthing financial shenanigans in the army air corps during WWII, he worked on airplane wiring, which somehow explained why all light switches were down for ON and up for OFF. Between that and my mom's depression-inspired hoarding of everything including 1 billion empty syrup bottles in the attic, whoever bought that place was in for a ride.
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Old 09-01-20, 05:20 AM
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Fixing to get caffeinated and go get the parts and play in the mud like a pig all day. Another 100+ swamp day and with forecast thunderstorms this evening I better get it done. Keep my focus so I don’t make any silly errors. Horrible location being near a fence and the overpriced garbage Hughesnet satellite dish and the main sewer line. And those blood stealing rose bush thorns. On my old family ranch I replaced the old metal rusted out pipes with pvc and never put a lawn faucet directly on the main line. Branched them off with a cutoff valve. Faucet breaks shut it off isolated to that one spot. Repair without shutting down the. whole system. But like you all said I’m in a rural area where code violations are the norm. My barn is a code violation not unsafe but wouldn’t pass an inspection in a municipality.

Last edited by Hondo Gravel; 09-01-20 at 05:21 AM. Reason: I need coffee
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Old 09-01-20, 10:24 AM
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Got the piston now waiting for the water to drain


Oh what fun
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Old 09-01-20, 10:34 AM
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My exwife's parents cabin was built during the depression, and had suffered from time, the elements, neglect from entitled family members and too many ham handed attempts at repairs with whatever was on hand. Every spring we'd go up to open it for another season, and there were usually several trips to town for parts to repair stuff that had worked last fall.
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Old 09-01-20, 10:45 AM
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Years ago, in a house I sold long ago, I redid the bathroom and had to do a bit of non-standard plumbing to make it work. In short, I had to marry modern plumbing standards into some sort of archaic lead pipe that did not fit anything modern.

Well, I don't care to really admit what I did. It worked, but it was ugly.

Before I closed up the wall, I wrote an apology to any future homeowners with a Sharpie on the nearest stud. I hope anyone who has been in that wall since then has forgiven me.

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Old 09-01-20, 11:53 AM
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Successful I’m all out of cuss words for 2020 I can’t cuss anymore. I scraped that faucet don’t need it there anyways. Now a hot shower. Now on to the next thing that needs fixing but isn’t urgent.

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Old 09-01-20, 12:08 PM
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No bubblin' crude? Did you try shooting it first?

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Old 09-01-20, 12:09 PM
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Every time I think of plumbing repairs I remember that scene in Moonstruck.

I just remembered some gawdawful bassackward wiring a guy did for my granddad's dock on the lake. As granddad got older he had mobility problems. Being a farm boy at heart he used a small tractor rather than an electric scooter or wheelchair to get around his vast 3 acre property. Besides, he could mow a little here and there as he was riding around inspecting the fences and whatnot.

Anyway, granddad's office faced the lake, and he wanted to be able to control the outdoor lights on the deck outside his office, and the dock about 100 yards away, from multiple locations. A complex but workable bit of wiring.

The electrician got the wiring right. But instead of running the wiring to the dock either through waterproofed conduit attached to the underside of dock (in case the lake level rose, which was rare but did occur every few years), granddad wanted the wiring elevated. So the electrician used PVC pipe as a makeshift guardrail and handrail. Completely unsuitable for the task. All it accomplished was to elevate the wiring a couple of feet above the dock. But in the direct sun the pipe quickly broke down, sagged and the joints fell apart. Meanwhile, we all feared that granddad would either run his mini tractor completely off the dock (yeah, he drove on the 4 foot wide dock), or would try to use the PVC pipe as a handrail and fall in and drown or, since the lake was often dry, break some bones.

Country living in unregulated rural Texas counties (and elsewhere, I'm sure) is an exercise in enjoying the grand experiment in freedom from government intervention that gave us libertarian paradises like Deadwood, Liberia and every part of Central and South American controlled by drug warlords.

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Old 09-01-20, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by canklecat View Post
Every time I think of plumbing repairs I remember that scene in Moonstruck.

https://youtu.be/1slibJ52yoc
Bringing this on the cycling topic - that plumber is Vincent Gardenia, who played Dave's father in the (mercifully short) TV (Sean Cassidy) version of Breaking Away.

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