Saturday, December 14, 2013

Beverly Hills or Bust - Sculpture Road Trip Day 4 Loose Bolts and Snow

     We slept so well after pulling our all night drive that we missed the free hotel breakfast.  We tried to walk to a place near the hotel, but it was too damn cold so we drove over to Baker Brothers Deli

One of there Breakfast Specials was the "90210" which fit really well with our Beverly Hills or Bust.

The "90210  Breakfast Special"

      After breakfast we checked the ropes holding down the Swinging Jenny and discovered that the man's right toes were up in the air.
The nuts holding the sculpture down had worked loose
 My original sculpture had two 1/2" nuts welded into the right foot.  One in the front and one in the back.  The left foot is up on it's toes so it only has one attachment point.  The three points make a tripod which is a stable configuration.  The foundry decided that they would only put one 3/4" nut in each foot.  The 3/4" stainless steel nuts and threaded rods are strong as hell, but don't prevent the sculpture from rocking forward and back.  The other thing is that Duncan, who has worked in bike shops, asked several times if we shouldn't be using "Locktite" to prevent the nuts from working loose. We were assured that the Locktite wasn't necessary. 

Turned out the Locktite was necessary
     The winter storm was on its way and overnight the wind had picked up from the north and the temperature had dropped into the teens.  Not the best weather for working with the ice cold nuts, bolts and  tools.  This time we used Locktite.

    Doing the repair cost us several hours and soon after we left Amarillo the snow started falling.

Snow is starting to fall as we leave Amarillo

   It was so cold that the snow was light and powdery and the big trucks blew the snow out of the right lane so the sparse traffic keep moving right along. Then when the snow had reached about 3" I suddenly noticed red brakelights coming on at the top of the hill.  When I put my brake on I realized that we were suddenly driving on ice.  At the crest of the hill we could see several trucks and cars had swerved and skidded off of the road.  For the next couple of hours we stuck in a one lane traffic jam.  It was pretty intense driving. Finally, by the time we got to Albuquerque, New Mexico the snow had stopped as the winter storm stayed to the east of the continental divide.

    We stopped for dinner  at El Cafecito  in a little town of Grants, New Mexico.  Duncan had eaten there last summer on his mountain bike ride from Canada to Mexico along the Continental Divide.

My dinner entry was $4.50

     We bedded down for the night in Flagstaff, Arizona.

Day 3 Driving across the middle of the USA

 Gassing up in the predawn hours.  It is foggy and sometimes we get a heavy drizzle.  At least it is pretty warm. 

By dawn we reached Saint Louis, Missouri.  Since the St. Louis Arch soars way up into the sky we thought that it was only appropriate to have Swinging Jenny visit it.

 It is so foggy you can't see the top of the arch.  Can you imaging a Swinging Jenny that tall?


After seeing the Arch we were ready for a good breakfast.  We found  Chili Mac's with a parking space right in front.

We had a very pleasant breakfast here.  Good food and friendly people.  They liked the Swinging Jenny even used this picture as their profile picture on The Chili Mac's Facebook page.  Click here to see it!

First order of business is to check the phone.

This reminds me of the Edward Hopper painting

Back on the road again.  Taking a break in the middle of somewhere

Half way across the country near Joplin, Missouri we are 1600 miles from home and 1,600 to LA.
 They get you coming and going.  

Texas Panhandle Sunset

Driving into the night. We decided to stop in Amarillo, Texas

Feeling hungry we found a funky Road House called Coyote Bluff

Great use for an old claw foot bathtub:  Fill it up with ice and beer!

Had to try the "Hamburger From Hell".  It was hot, spicy and delicious.  If you are ever in Amarillo, Texas you should check it out.
Then time for a good night's sleep. On the way to the hotel we saw a bright shooting star in the Northern sky heading toward Roswell.  Aliens maybe?   Checking the weather there was a major winter storm coming, but with an early start we should be able to avoid the snow as we continue to head west.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Beverly Hills or Bust - a Sculpture Road Trip Day 2 - Picking up the cast stainless steel Swinging Jenny

Arrived at the foundry
Doing the final touch up work.  In the foreground is the original Swinging Jenny. You can see where it was cut into pieces to make the molds.

 I will say I do like the look of the stainless steel.

 Securing the Swinging Jenny to its base.  Two 3/4" stainless steel threaded rods go up into the man's feet.  I always like to have three or more attachment points because a tripod is stable. 

 The Metal Men and the Artist.

Loaded up, tied down, and ready to roll.

We celebrated being on the road with a good meal.  I didn't manage to eat half of the stake.  We decided to drive on through the night and get some miles under our belts.

Off into the night.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Beverly Hills or Bust - First Day

Monday December 2

After a restless night with maybe an hour of sleep alarm went off at 4:30AM.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Fountain Ice Fun.

You never know when the fountain comes in handy.  I made the fountain back in 1976 but didn't get around to building the pond until 35 years later!  Typical, what's the rush?


Jay Lagemann

Begin forwarded message:

From: YouTube <>
Date: December 1, 2013 at 9:13:11 AM EST
To: Jay Lagemann <>
Subject: Congrats, your video's now on YouTube!

Congrats, your video's now on YouTube!
Way to go, Jay Lagemann!
Your video's now on YouTube.
Fountain Ice Fun
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