Grit Blogs > Adventures of Old Nebraska Dave

Working on Old Plumbing Plus a Garden Update

A photo of Nebraska DaveThis has been a very strange garden year to be sure. It's seems that everything produced over abundantly but it's being short lived. The cucumbers were coming in so fast I was buried in cukes. Then one day they just dried up and quit. The potatoes seem to be Ok from the ones that I've dug up, but the green peppers, that's another story. From eight plants I havested 6 beautiful peppers early in the season then nothing. I see now there are two or tree smaller peppers but nothing of real importance. The onions were a bust. The tomatoes are going gang busters but now there are signs of leaf curl, and I expect in another couple weeks they will be done. All grown the same as last year but just different weather patterns, I guess.

 Official garden Van Camp bean can rain gauge 

The last rain here was a real gully washer. Much to my surprise the next morning as I toured the garden and checked the official bean can garden rain gauge, it was full. It had rained a good four inches over night. Being 40 feet above the river level and no where near any flash flood creeks, my garden and property were exempted from any damage. Not so for some other folks. Stories came out about sewers backing up into houses and low lying streets were under water for a time as the storm drains just couldn't handle the torrential rains of the night before.

My pickles didn't turn out as well as I would have liked.  After letting them set for about a month, I cracked open a jar and had a taste.  They taste great but are mushy.  There's nothing worse than a mushy pickle.  I'm glad I didn't make a whole bunch until I get the proceedure perfected.  Yeah, I'm getting smarter in my old age.  Ah well, I'll give it another try soon.  I can always buy a couple store cucumbers for practice.

Today's another year older and hopefully not any farther in debt.  Yup, spent the birthday relaxing and eating barbequed ribs at my favorite restaruant with my youngest daughter.  Tomorrow it's back to the challanging stuff like working on old plumbing.


The decision was to replace that old faucet in the 1/2 bath that has been causing grief. As you can see it hasn't been used for a while. It's time to put this sink back into use. The wrestling match between the old bathroom faucet and me ended with faucet - 1 Old Dave - 0. Of course it teased me with the deception that I was winning by making it just hard enough to test my demolition skills. After wrangling the rusty faucet lock nuts with 45 years of corrosion and finally using a sawsall to remove the old faucet, the false perception was that the fight was going in my favor. Alas after the battle raged for two hours and a feeling of accomplishment came over me, the final test with water pressure on showed the error of my thinking. Water pressure on and sink faucet off, all was good. Hot water on, all is still good. Cold water on, spray on the wall and water dripping on the floor. Cold water off. Spraying and dripping quit. Hmmmm, defective faucet. The thought crossed my mind that my idea about using a used faucet laying around to save a buck was a dumb idea turned out to be true.

Home improvement store here I come ... again. That's not all that bad because on the way home seeds from the local nursery will be purchased to plant the fall garden. The faucet display just happened to have a clearance sale on the exact faucet needed. Yahoo!! So, once again it's time to drain down the water system, remove the some what used defective faucet and replace it with a nice new one. Hopefully this one will last another 45 years. Then it will definitely be some one else's problem. Ok, so let's begin.

 Removing the old faucet 

Yeah, it's a messy job but someone has to do it. I keep trying to get my soon to be seven-year-old grandson to help but he's not having anything to do with bathroom repair. He keeps saying, "Grandpa, I'll have a job," which means he'll be hiring someone else to do that job.

At the end of day two it's the faucet repair - 2 Old Dave - 0. Ah, the joys of working on 45 year old plumbing. The new faucet was great and installed just fine but just a little drip started from around the stopper in the sink. Well, OK, a dribble. So no problem a new stopper came with the new faucet. Yeah, however, removing the old stopper was not possible and well, I broke the sink trying all different methods trying to remove the rusted solid plumbing under the sink. As you can clearly see that 45 years ago all the plumbing was metal which corrodes and rusts together magnificently. A bigger issue is the pipe that goes into the wall. After decades of close contact the two became one. Now the rusted pipe has to be chiseled out of the galvanized pipe. Oh, boy, I'm looking forward to that.

 New Faucet 

Well, the good news is that the new faucet is installed.  Right? That was the goal wasn't it?  This seemingly never ending saga will have to be concluded in another post next time.  So, until then, may your plumbing keep flowing and your sink stoppers remain sealed.  Oh man I really think it's time for a cup of coffee .... and a nap.