Quick Win

Weekends have been spent doing and redoing the conduit and electrical line in our trench. Last weekend in a frozen trench. There is a whole tale of woe to tell but I’ll spare you to give you a little upbeat tidbit instead. Besides the inspector will have the last word on that one.

I came back tired and nearly thawed, eager to have some bacon, eggs, fresh baked bread and espresso. Our machine is no great shakes and has been coming apart for a while, with a big crack forming in the plastic handle. I’ve been eyeing this and thinking about ways to fix it. Maybe filling it with epoxy? It looked like there was a little bolt holding the metal portafilter to the handle deep inside the hollow handle. Could I make something and drill a long enough hole to attach the metal part? Maybe step down a hole to get a small socket in there?

So when it did finally come apart in L’s hands I had a game plan, but there was a sense of urgency. Morning coffee depended on it!

I found a doug fir 2×3 scrap in the garage and cut it to size. Then I drilled a hole all the way through it freehand and began drilling the shape of the metal part into the end. Chisels came out to finish the job, drill again, chisel. Then I dropped the bolt in and presto a handle that was functional. I thought about stopping there. I wanted to stop there. It seemed funny to bring back my 2×3 rough framing job and call it good. But I couldn’t.

I went in search of a knife… only finding an ancient fish filet knife and began to whittle and carve at it. Dry doug fir chips and splits more than taking a clean shaving so I switched to a coarse rasp.

In two hours I was done. I did it once. It went to plan. It is stronger and more attractive than the original. I’ll varnish it tonight to make it fully kitchen ready.
Gosh I needed a quick win.





About M. Agriculteur

Designer, motorcycle junkie, traveler, wanna-be iron butter (more butt than iron), builder, foodie, farmer wanna-be.
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4 Responses to Quick Win

  1. I think I would have made coffee with the half finished handle and planned to go and finish it later, my need for the coffee would have been too great 🙂 That said, of course, probably something else would have come up while I was having coffee and I would have moved on with the rest of the day, not remembering the handle till I needed it again the next day. See? That’s why a lot of things here are half finished, and you have a beautifully finished coffee scoop thingy handle, and have stilled moved on to the other projects in the day.

  2. I fretted about it for a minute, but then said to myself, “Self, when are you going to get another 2 hours to mess around with this project?” It fits my gorilla sized hand well, but I am still tempted to shave a little more off so it fits La Femme’s petite paw better. So I COULD say it is unfinished yet and that I only did enough to make coffee again. 😉

  3. Deb Weyrich-Cody says:

    Hello, Merry Christmas & Joyeux Noël, M. Et Mme. Agriculteur! I followed you home from Sailor’s Small Farm and have been alternately cheering and wincing while reading posts (we love the Vinyl Café around here too, btw; )
    Nice job on the espresso (packer?) handle! It’s probably already too late but, if your varnish doesn’t wear well, you might try a couple of coats of tung oil instead. It’ll soak right in and not form a “skin” like varnish does (Lee Valley Tools has a couple of versions depending on your preference: )

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