Thursday, August 30, 2012

Catching Up

Raccoon's love sweetcorn!
After 9 straight days of travel and non stop fishing, it's surprising what starts piling up around the homestead.  Along with having tickets to see Alan Jackson last Friday night and Blake Shelton on Saturday night at the Minnesota State Fair, it leaves little time to do anything other than getting caught up with my projects.  One thing I didn't have to do was freeze any of my late crop sweet corn but it wasn't because of time.  As stated before I have good sized garden and fresh sweet core is always something to look forward to.  The strategy is to plant half the 6 rows in early May and the other half after Memorial Day.  This would assure there would be a crop before I went to Alaska and by the time I returned the second planting would be ready to go.  My favorite is a bi-colored kerneled corn called Honey'n Pearl.  It is sweet and holds well over a week of riping time.  This year I didn't buy enough seed to plant the last 2 rows so I substituted an old favorite of my Dad's, Northrup King's K199 Hybrid.  Man did that grow and is almost 2 feet higher than the first planting.  What was really nice is the cobs are very high up on the stalk, high enough to assume maybe the raccoons would leave it alone.  Fat Chance!  Obviously there was a smorgasbord and I wasn't invited.  Tuesday morning's discovery of nearly every stalk of the K199 either tore down or had the ears cropped off looked like the first picture. So much for freezing corn.  With my tomato's starting to ripen, rather than processing corn I got out the live trap and a can of sardines out of the boat.  I'm sure the one in the trap wasn't the sole perpetrator of the damage but it's a start.  The good new is......I don't have to freeze corn!  No worries, there is some from the first crop in the freezer.

New muffler, carburetor, and newly connected alternator
I have been real anxious to get my Ferguson TO35 tractor running like a new machine.  Although I could drive it fine, there were a number of issues that needed attention.  The tractor was originally configured for 6 volt, positive ground.  The previous owner Wes attempted to modernize the electrical system by switching it to a 12 volt negative ground which most vehicles are configured today.  This involves changing the starter, removing the generator and adding an alternator, then rewiring the ignition.  As well the carburetor was pretty well shot and with the original manufacturer out of business, rebuild kits are not available on the market.   In the past 2 weeks I have removed the old muffler, rethreaded one of the manifold studs and replaced it.  The alternator was not even hooked up so that needed to be correctly wired in.  The carburetor, well I ended up buying a rebuilt rather than trying to fix it.  The rest of the wiring was cobbled together so I tore it out and replaced it with more modern wire as well replaced the oil pressure gauge and swapped the ammeter for a voltage gauge, a better indication of whether the alternator is working.  Unfortunately after all that work the ignition system runs worse than ever.  Discovering that the coil was wired backwards did little to fix things and after bypassing the entire electrical system and connecting the coil straight to the battery, it still runs like crap.  My next step is to install new points and condenser hoping this will work.  Frankly it's not that complicated but it sure has my gears spinning.  Hopefully I can get it purring and move to the next 2 issues, my oil leak and the PTO engagement.  Those days working for Vic are really paying off!

2 nice silvers from the Bachatna
This weekend should see me finally get back up to Mille Lacs and start prefishing for my trip on the 21st.  The full moon is this Friday and I will probably not take advantage of it until Sunday as I am heading out on a motorcycle trip with my brother on Saturday.   My tomato's are really starting to turn red and the peppers are at their peak.  This year I went with some of the heirloom varieties including Brandy-wine, a fabulous eating tomato and Amish Paste, a large meaty type destined for salsa.  The raspberries are coming on strong and will be reserving some to make wine with my neighbor Lory.  We shared a bottle of his rhubarb wine the other night and it was hands down better than the commercial rhubarb wine I had at the State Fair.  He's got 6 more gallons brewing as we will start bottling in October.  I would like to try and get out on the river sometime as well.  Because it hasn't rained in a while, the water level is very low.  This should help to concentrate the fish and with the slower current allow more time to cast the hot spots.  As well the river is much easier to read and it might be a great time to target walleyes.  I simply cannot end without another picture of 2 beautiful salmon I caught a few weeks ago.  The one on the left is good sized hen (female) and the hooked jawed fish on the right is called a buck (male).  Lord knows why a chicken and a fish have the same designation on the female gender while a deer and a fish have it on the male side.  One of life's mystery's, sort of like why my tractor at the moment doesn't run!


Beaver Creek Cabins & Guide Service said...

Hmm, I think those are both bucks (why not stags?). One is just fresher than the other and the nose isn't quite as bulbous. Of course, I could be wrong but only the guy that cleaned them would know for sure.

AK Keith

Dave Anderson said...

You are probably right! it just wrote better that way:-)