Pat's Log
Mon, 08 Jan 2007

Clarinet Cleaning with Brasso
20070107 Like most of the things I do on weekends, it was completely out-of-the blue that today's major activity should take place. I had a sudden idea to try cleaning the various badly-tarnished pieces of my clarinet with Brasso. I bought my clarinet on eBay about six years ago, and when it came, I realized it had badly tarnished chromework. It had brown rust spots, green rust spots, and an overall rough yellowish haze.

I have not been able to find much about this clarinet. I had searched the internet when I first received it based on its markings, which indicate it was made by "H. FREEMAN N.Y", a stamp indicating it was made in France, and the serial number 1723. Suffice it to say that there is no real information out there. The spattering of message board posts indicates it is probably about 50 years old, but that is it.

On to the cleaning. It became quickly apparent that it would not be possible to clean up the metalwork without getting a lot of liquid onto the wood body, so I disassembled everything. It took approximately three hours to clean the lower half. I will have to do the upper half at some other point; it is smelly and tedious work. Nonetheless, it worked very well, the clean parts really shine. The clarinet looks as it should, silver and black.

In other news, my one-year membership to the Carleton Athletics Centre expired today. The plan was to go three times per week over the last year, and I went three times per week with few exceptions. I have renewed for another year.

[] | posted @ 04:44 | link
Thu, 04 Jan 2007

20070103 I meant to wrap up some 2006 items here over the Christmas break, but the network connection this web server is plugged into was down the entire time.

Anyway, last June, during the Carp airshow, I stumbled about a large FirstAir scrap plane. I was very curious, so I went next to it, reached up, and pulled on the handle to open a hatch. Couldn't see inside. Little did I know, the hatch on the starboard side could only be closed from the inside. Feeling bad about leaving it open, I went to the other side, opened the other hatch, and tried jumping in. You have to understand, floor level was at my eye level, and there was nothing below the bottom of the hatch; suffice it to say it was very difficult to jump/climb into. I did it eventually, getting my perfectly new white clothes very dirty in aluminum dust in the process.

The plane was an Hawker Siddeley 748 (HS748), originally made by Avro. The inside of the fuselage was sad. What is now a pile of junk used to soar the sky. Now, it was just sitting in an aviation field, stripped of anything valuable, slowly rotting away. I eventually closed the hatches and left. It was a neat experience.

As I was swimming tonight and thinking about this, I had a bit of a daydream. I was a passenger on a 767 flying near Ottawa, and both of the pilots were disabled for some reason. No one else knew how to fly a plane, and since this was my dream, I decided to take charge. It was weird, because I had visualized the whole thing, from contacting the airport, to asking for a diversion to Mirabel where there would be less chance of hitting something, to asking for a pilot plane that could lead a glide path. Ten minutes of this before I interrupted myself! Bizarre!

[] | posted @ 04:40 | link

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