All about the brew, all about the gears!

Winter Woodwork Projects

I’ve been puttering away this winter on few little woodwork projects in the new house.  My wife wanted a bench in the entryway for us to store mittens, hats, baseball gloves and things in.  She had this wooden bookshelf that I had custom made for her nail salon back when we opened it in 2012.  Since we moved the salon into our new house this past year, it had no use.  So, i took it apart and starting fashioning it into what she wanted.

This was the basic framework of it.  wood glued and large screws to hold it together.  She had stated in the past that she was sick of the exposed buttons over the countersunk screw holes.  So I ended up hiding everything on this project.

I built a front framework for it, and basically built it around the containers we already had in our possession.  She loves black so this project ended up with a black glossy look.

It’s got a 1 inch foam topper on it, then covered in fabric, simply stapled up under the top lip.  Not visible is the 2×2 frame under the cabinet, and the rear foot I placed in the middle, so that about 550 lbs of human can sit on it safely.  Turned out pretty good.

The other project was also her request, which was for my new shotgun to be put into the living room decor, but in nicer looking display.

I measured the gun in question and built a single gun rack specifically for it. I found the general guideline on Pinterest, then modified it for my gun. It was made from the same black bookshelf’s wood.

This is after I sanded it down, put a light stain on it and felt to cradle the gun.  The ceilings are 9 feet in the living room, so I have little worry of it falling into little hands, but I may add a small hing lock above the stock at some point in the future. I still plan in hunting with this gun, so it will be an empty rack for a month a year:)


Liberty Tires

If you look a few years back in the Gears Section of this blog, I installed some small lift springs and some larger tires. Liberty Spring/Shocks/Tires Well, the time had come to replace those tires after about 45000 miles.  I chose Treadwright mostly for cost, but also out of curiosity to see for myself how they’d last.  My wife’s 2014 Honda CRV does most of the driving duties at distance now, so the Liberty stays in town an spends most of it’s miles in the woods now. Original tire size was 225 75 16 p rated all season, which is about 29.28 x 8.85 inches.  I had been running a 215 85 16 E rated all terrain, which is around 30.38x 8.4 inches.  Heres a photo of the original change: stock is on right, my previous tires on left.


I chose a 245 75 16 this time and also went with E rated again and a mud terrain pattern this time. Normally these are 30.46 x 9.6, but the tread wrights run a bit larger due to the remolding.  Here’s a photo of this change. Note the smaller ones are the large ones in the above photo but worn out now.


I had to shave some plastic off, and use my heat gun to get them to fit.  the washer bottle bottom is now exposed, albeit sprayed with some underlining to protect it some this winter.

I had my shop fit only the spare so I could cut at home in my leisure.  Then take it in to get the rest mounted. I had to cut some more when they were put on.


I like the overall look, and will be honest with my readers of the performance of them over time:)




I’ve completely let this blog die in the past year. Here’s to no more!  I haven’t been drinking much beer, and I haven’t been wrenching on things too much, so I figured I would share what I have been doing.  I have made a few interesting items over the past year for gifts that I would love to share with everyone!

The top two photos are of a wine rack I made for my sister for  Christmas last year.  It’s all loaded up now:)  There’s a small box I made to carry all my essentials in my jeep, complete with a fold down work surface to keep the saw off the carpet and other items at a more comfortable height to work on. It has handles and weighs quite a bit, but loads and unloads easily from the back.  Even with the hi-lift on there.  The gun cabinet is an old project that I have kept up with over time, fixing things and shoring it up.  And the last two photos at the bottom are a headboard I made for my wife a year or so ago.   She wanted a place to store books and nick-knacks.  It’s in the flesh on the left, and stained and installed on the right.  I plan on knocking out a few more Pinterest inspired things this year for Christmas as well:)


Founders KBS

I haven’t posted on this for just about a year.  I have had a few good beers since then, but mostly just been running through sammy seasonals.  I didn’t realize what I had in my possession until I got home Friday night.  

  I had visited a friend and as usual polished off a couple of his “leftovers” that no one else wanted or left behind.  There was a christmas ale and something else not memorable.  I left his house and swung by Merchants On The Corner.  It was 5 minutes after closing, and the door was locked.  Chantal let me in because she saw me, thanks Chantal!  I grabbed some sixer of winter ale and was ready to be on my way, when she mentioned they got a limited supply of something from Founders just in.  I bought it and didn’t realize what I had till I got home.  Apparently there is some hype around this beer.  I don’t keep up too much with new releases or the forum boards online.  I understand it’s not simple to get.


   This is an 11.2 ABV beer and has 70 IBUs.  My palate has been accepting lately of over 50 IBUs.  Must be changing, because that’s all I used to be able to handle.
The last Barrel Aged Stout I had was a 2012 bourbon county brand stout.   It was good.  It was tasty… I got a little drunk…this is better in my opinion.  Pours like old engine oil.  Which is what I expect it to look like.  Smells like dark chocolate, hard alcohol and a coffee sweet tartness to it.  Mouthfeel isn’t too thick, and while I could sense the boozeiness in the sip, there was none in the aftertaste.  Let it warm as you drink it and the character changes a bit.  But still no bad aftertaste. 


I got artsy with the photo.  Ya know, except for that bud light cap in the background.  It has a bottle opener in  the brim.  I have no idea why!

Sometimes roads are not as they appear..



Holy Grail Ale

Holy Grail

My loving sister actually picked this up while coming back from Bangor a few weeks ago, along with a few others that I’ll share as soon as this head-cold passes completely.  Yeah, it’s sort of gimmicky.  But that’s fun in it’s own way.  It’s 4.7% ABV and 141 calories.  It’s considered a English Pale Ale and made by Black Sheep Brewery out of the UK.

It poured a nice light amber color.  Decent enough head quickly ran away.

Good carbonation, fruity banana and just touch of malt.  You could drink this all day.  No issue.  Nothing adverse about it.  As for the bad reviews I kept looking at. “I don’t want to talk to you no more, you empty headed animal food trough wiper. I fart in your general direction. Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.”  French Soldier.

Ellen's Coffee Stout

I had the pleasure of pouring this at a local beer tasting about a month ago.  We sold out (or drank it all) that night, so I waited till the store got re-stocked and picked up a bottle.  It’s brewed by Atlantic Brewing out of Bar Harbor Maine.  (I’m far enough north to actually say it with the “r’s” intact.)  First off, the name is a play on words against Allen’s Coffee Brandy, a very popular drink among the, um, high class folk of Maine.  It’s made with coffee from Crooked Porch Coffee, also of Bar Harbor and there is a little touch of Madagascar Vanilla in there that really smooths the coffee flavor out and takes what would otherwise be some bite out of it.

It poured very dark with a small rim for a head.

The smell was coffee, roasted chocolate, and vanilla.  Taste was like a smooth coffee chocolate.  Not too thick, and very easy to drink.  There was a little bit of bitterness afterwards much like dark chocolate leaves in the mouth.  During the tasting there was Chocolate Espresso beans in front of the beer, which everyone loved while drinking the beer. (Although it may have led to me being up all night:))

Ellen’s Coffee Stout

This limited edition stout is brewed using fresh roasted coffee from our local roaster, Crooked Porch Coffee of Bar Harbor, Maine, and milk sugar in addition to barley malts. Adding a touch of natural Madagascar vanilla yields a touch of gentle sweetness and creaminess to the brew.