1st Day of Spring

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Finally, I say.  Spring officially starts at 4:45 pm CDT today.  That is good news for cycling in general.  Daylight saving time is the biggest boost for bike racing, but spring is a mental line where we feel optimistic that the weather is on the upswing and better days are ahead.

I noticed last weekend, which was warm in Topeka, that even in the bad neighborhoods, people seemed to be out and cleaning.  Spring cleaning I guess.  Some people were even doing yard work, which might be the only yard work done in those areas all year.  I guess we are pre-programmed to do chores when the weather gets nice?

I‘ve been trying to fix a garage door opener the last couple days.  I hate it that we live in a throw away society.  I’m not sure if the Internet has made that worse or made it better.  I think it is easier to just order something new now, but it is also easier to locate hard to find parts.

But, so far, I’ve not had any luck with locating the part I need.  I need a small brass bushing that the motor shaft rotates on.  The company, Chamberlain, doesn’t even have a data base that shows the replacement parts of any of their products pre-1993.  This opener is from the early 60’s I think.  1993 was the year that they started putting those stupid safety sensors on the door rails, by the floor, making it so the door won’t move if the beam is broken.  Usually when I put up a garage door opener, I just wire those things up on the ceiling about an inch apart, so they never get knocked and don’t affect the operation of the door.

So, I went and bought a new opener.  I’m pretty sure the opener will work with the same chain and rail thing, but I’m not sure about that yet.

KU is playing their first game in the NCAA tournament  in 30 minutes, so I have to finish up.  It’s raining out, so I don’t feel so lazy watching TV during the day as I normally would.  Funny how that is.

This is the bushing that is worn out.  It has a  lip on it and it allows the shaft to spin in the metal housing.

This is the bushing that is worn out. It has a lip on it and it allows the shaft to spin in the metal housing.

New head unit.  I hate throwing good stuff away because it is still repairable, but without the correct  replacement part, it is valueless.

New head unit. I hate throwing good stuff away because it is still repairable, but without the correct replacement part, it is valueless.

10 thoughts on “1st Day of Spring

  1. DK

    Too bad on the old garage door opener. With the repair it likely would have outlived the new one. Berry Bearing or the like would have had the bronze thrust washer you needed. Probably less than a buck.

  2. Wildcat

    Funny. My Dad did the same thing with his new opener’s sensor. The two beams face each other a couple inches apart. Same install location – up on the ceiling. You two are a lot alike. Doesn’t like the automatic safety things that have been put into place the last few decades. He tells the story all the time about when Honda started installing clutch safety switches in their cars. So you would have to have the clutch pushed in for the engine to start. He had an ’85 Accord and the clutch switch malfunctioned all the time – the car thought the clutch wasn’t pushed in so it wouldn’t allow him to start the engine. He wired the damn thing together. He also rarely wears a bicycle helmet.

  3. Terrence Keenan

    Check Fastenal? Even if it’s not stocked, sometimes a friendly rep will do the measurements and call a supplier.

  4. Mike

    I’ve had some stuff like that custom machined. It was suprisingly affordable. But,I know a guy.

  5. Sean YD

    The Jayhawks practiced (for real, not the “show” they put on at the “open practice” Thursday) at my daughter’s high school. Omaha really pulls out the stops for these teams, providing a VIP motorcoach and a police escort even the president would be proud to enjoy.

  6. Mark G

    What’s up with the van you bought in California,does it need transmission ? The ford still road worthy ?

  7. donkybhoy

    Dont throw out the old one. Chances are the new one wont last long, capitalism dictates that we need to keep spending and therefore things are not made to last anymore in order to make us spend.

    A brass washer like that could be made pretty easily at a workshop.

  8. Larry T.

    Or you could just open the garage door the old fashioned way and save the electricity, labor and expense of a new unit. When I had a garage door replaced a few years back the guy looked at me like I had two heads when I declined the installation of an electric motorized opener. One note on disabling the safety switches on those things….if some child gets his/her head stuck in there and is injured, you’ll catch hell if they find out you bypassed the built-in safety thing required by law.

  9. H Luce

    I went through two of those things in four years, five years ago. The failure mode was teeth stripping off a plastic gear, so you can see the obvious planned obsolescence. I just put a handle and hasp for a lock on the outside of the door, and an equally simple mechanism on the inside. No electricity involved, no breakdowns, no waste, no safety issues… and your garage door is half the size of mine.


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