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Old 03-04-2010, 03:28 PM   #1
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Favorite jury rigging story


definition of jury rig: to erect, construct, or arrange in a makeshift fashion

http://www.merriam-webster.com/netdict/jury-rig

I know this is a how to DIY site but I thought itd be fun to just throw out a few funny stories about a home improvement job that you had to jury rig.

Whether it was because 1) You didnt possess the proper tools for the job or 2) you didnt possess the proper materials at the time or 3) perhaps you just werent aware of the "proper" way to fix it or whatever the reason is. Most of us have probably done it from time to time

I can tell you that after owning my first home for about 6 years, I learned quite a few handy tricks on how to use what I had on hand to fix something. Most of the ideas escape me at the moment ill try to post them as I think of them. Perhaps some of your experiences will jog my memory.

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Old 03-04-2010, 06:03 PM   #2
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Favorite jury rigging story


Super glue for paper cuts.

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Old 03-04-2010, 07:54 PM   #3
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Favorite jury rigging story


Bought a bottle of wine to celebrate our new home a few months ago...only problem was, corkscrew was packed up in a box at the other house.

I did the only thing I thought might work and that was to drill a 2" screw partway into the cork and i grabbed a pair of channel locks and using them as a lever, pulled the cork right out.
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Old 03-04-2010, 08:10 PM   #4
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Favorite jury rigging story


Fun idea for a thread!

I was doing an inspection of the sheetrock in a new high school's fire-rated exit corridor. The attachment of the sheetrock is critical to the fire-resistant rating of the wall. They had a lot of pipes and ductwork above the grid ceiling to work around when installing the rock, and when I was checking the screw pattern I realized that they didn't use screws 8" on center like they were supposed to................They used a black permanent marker to draw little screw heads on the sheetrock that they thought was high enough that I wouldn't expect it. There were literally hundreds of little black dots up there.

Needless to say I not only turned it down, I called a meeting with the entire crew, their foremen, their company's management and we had a little discussion about basic ethics.

It ticked me off at first, but it was honestly pretty clever and it was hard not to grin too hard when chewing on them about it. It became a standing joke for the remainder of the project that the sheetrockers would show me their nail bags whenever I came by to prove that they weren't carrying markers.
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Old 03-05-2010, 08:14 AM   #5
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Favorite jury rigging story


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Originally Posted by thekctermite View Post
Fun idea for a thread!

I was doing an inspection of the sheetrock in a new high school's fire-rated exit corridor. The attachment of the sheetrock is critical to the fire-resistant rating of the wall. They had a lot of pipes and ductwork above the grid ceiling to work around when installing the rock, and when I was checking the screw pattern I realized that they didn't use screws 8" on center like they were supposed to................They used a black permanent marker to draw little screw heads on the sheetrock that they thought was high enough that I wouldn't expect it. There were literally hundreds of little black dots up there.

Needless to say I not only turned it down, I called a meeting with the entire crew, their foremen, their company's management and we had a little discussion about basic ethics.

It ticked me off at first, but it was honestly pretty clever and it was hard not to grin too hard when chewing on them about it. It became a standing joke for the remainder of the project that the sheetrockers would show me their nail bags whenever I came by to prove that they weren't carrying markers.
Pretty clever indeed....However Im not privy to what that would mean in case of a fire but I assume black dots would not cut the mustard. Could them not using screws in this case cause a serious problem or would it not make much of a difference?
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Old 03-05-2010, 08:19 AM   #6
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Favorite jury rigging story


Well...nothing to do with repair work but....I had a MC plate stolen
So I cut a piece of steel the same size, painted it white
Then I used red magic marker to draw in the outer outline & the numbers
I was never stopped
Plates were only good for 1 year at the time & the Inspection sticker was the same as a car & kept in your wallet
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Old 03-05-2010, 11:12 AM   #7
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Favorite jury rigging story


I served on a "Petit Jury" (six members) once. The Judge "charged" the jurors (gave instructions) before we even heard what the case was about. He told us we would award the Plaintiff $10,001 even before we heard the case, a traffic accident. Well, IF you knew me--I stood right up and asked the Judge how he could tell us this before hearing the case. The Bailiff came over and told me to "sit down and shut up". Wrong move! I kept insisting on an answer and the Judge found me in "Contempt of Court". I whipped out my wallet, asked who to pay so we could continue this case. The judge ordered me evicted from the courtroom, but--both of the attending lawyers asked for a conference with the Judge. It seems that they both wanted me to stay as I was outspoken, and they felt like I would be impartial. Then one of the lawyers explained to us that this case had been before the Judge, in chambers, and no resolution had been reached. Therefore, under State Law(s), this hearing was necessary and the Law plainly stated that there was a minimum $10,001 award. We heard the case, fruitless to say the least. The defendants insurance company had offered a settlement (undisclosed). We awarded the $10,001, as directed, and the Plaintiff fainted in the courtroom. Th insurance offer was $35,000, we found out. The Contempt of Court fine was $35. worth every penny of it. The Judge told me that he had never had anyone stand up to him in his courtroom before. I reminded him who paid for that courtroom and his robe. Just another "jury rig" story. David
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Old 03-05-2010, 12:55 PM   #8
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Favorite jury rigging story


Awesome story Thurman! Thanks for posting it.
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Old 03-05-2010, 01:54 PM   #9
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Favorite jury rigging story


Generally i'm not a fan of doing it. The only time that comes to mind was when the throttle body on my 88 Plymouth was sticking open at highway speeds. I drilled a self-tapper into the firewall and ziptied 20 rubber bands to it to add extra tension!

As far as the house goes, we are discovering funny things. It definitely seems that the old owner lived by 1 rule:

If it breaks:

1: Re-attach it with a thumb-tack
2: Re-attach it with Scotch-tape
3: Paint over it!

I found the wallpaper border was attached near the corners with scotch tape
The door that binds a little bit... some of the wood flaked off - it was re-attached with scotch tape.

Etc.
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Old 03-05-2010, 02:55 PM   #10
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Favorite jury rigging story


Sounds like someone needs to teach the previous owner about duct tape!
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Old 03-05-2010, 02:58 PM   #11
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Favorite jury rigging story


Quote:
Originally Posted by CoconutPete View Post
Generally i'm not a fan of doing it. The only time that comes to mind was when the throttle body on my 88 Plymouth was sticking open at highway speeds. I drilled a self-tapper into the firewall and ziptied 20 rubber bands to it to add extra tension!

As far as the house goes, we are discovering funny things. It definitely seems that the old owner lived by 1 rule:

If it breaks:

1: Re-attach it with a thumb-tack
2: Re-attach it with Scotch-tape
3: Paint over it!

I found the wallpaper border was attached near the corners with scotch tape
The door that binds a little bit... some of the wood flaked off - it was re-attached with scotch tape.

Etc.
Typically a novice DIY'er prefers to use duct tape for most repair jobs. Your guy mustve been an extreme novice
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Old 03-05-2010, 06:37 PM   #12
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Favorite jury rigging story


Boss and I tried to help someone by jump starting them. Something wasn't grounded properly and the throttle cable burned off. How we going to drive home with no throttle control.
Take a roll of hookup wire connect to throttle on carb and run out under edge of hood and in side window of truck. Truck is a stick shift so he drives working throttle, brake, clutch and I shift the stick when he say 2nd, 3rd, etc. Then when we get home he makes permanent repair using a brake cable from his bicycle.
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Old 03-05-2010, 06:54 PM   #13
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Favorite jury rigging story


Quote:
Originally Posted by toeey1 View Post
Bought a bottle of wine to celebrate our new home a few months ago...only problem was, corkscrew was packed up in a box at the other house.

I did the only thing I thought might work and that was to drill a 2" screw partway into the cork and i grabbed a pair of channel locks and using them as a lever, pulled the cork right out.
Did the exact same thing when my wife and I were first starting out in a little apartment. Didn't have channel locks though, so after turning in a drywall screw with a screwdriver, I used the claw of a hammer to pull the cork out.


When I worked for the city (Public Works), jury-rigging things was our daily job. We'd have to improvise in whatever way possible, as we often didn't have the supplies (or tools) needed to correctly do most jobs. Some memorable examples:

One day we had to go out and seal a gap that had opened around a storm grate in a concrete curb. We had some caulk-like substance that was made for this. However, we only had a couple tubes of the stuff on the truck, and it was a big gap. After going through one tube and knowing there was no way we had enough to finish this, we started stuffing whatever we could find into the hole: rags, old gloves, coke bottles - any and everything we could fit in there. Then smoothed over the top with the compound and it looked good as new!

We had an old, secondary garage that we kept little-used items in, such as watermain fittings, etc. It was decided that the new John Deere mower took up too much room, and they wanted it down at the other garage. So another guy and myself drove it over there, only to find that the roll-up door didn't go up high enough to let the tractor in. The ceiling had the clearance, but not the door. So, we loosened he screws on the roller of the top flap of the roller, so as the door went up, the flap fell down and allowed the door to raise higher. This was a complicated process involving one guy to drive the tractor, and at least 1 other guy with a long 2x4 to manage the door. The door was then closed and secured by wedging the 2x4 against the top flap to keep it up. Wasn't pretty, but it stayed like that for several years.

When a sign was turned or leaning, it was nothing that couldn't be fixed with a big pipe-wrench, a cheater bar, or the bumper of the truck.

I'm sure more will come to me as I think about it. Working there was a good lesson in how not to do things.



My favorite is something I still use to this day - the shop bandage. A paper towel and electrical tape > anything ever made by Johnson & Johnson.
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Old 03-05-2010, 07:02 PM   #14
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Favorite jury rigging story


And of course someone else MUST have cut a can & used that with hose clamps to fix an exhaust pipe with a leak

I remember in freezing cold weather stuffing cardboard & rags into my radiator (66' Mustang) to keep it from freezing
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Old 03-05-2010, 07:09 PM   #15
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Favorite jury rigging story


I'm constantly learning new tricks - I've used the started motor of a car, some straps, and a wrench to break a persistent bolt loose off a suspension part (THAT WAS SCARY) THANK GOODNESS for impact tools!

Here are two:
One belongs to the former homeowner - I imagine the thought process went like this: Hey, that hole is exactly the same size as a corn cob - It is likely that it was painted over and remained in place since the 1940s!


This one is mine - I broke a pipe and had to remove some threaded galvanized plumbing (Yes, it will get replaced). Got out my biggest pipe wrench and pulled and pushed with all my might and the only thing that happened was the pipe flexed. I had to pull a bunch of T&G off the ceiling and I notched two pieces to brace the pipes and was able to get them loose.

I was especially proud of that one - give me a big enough lever.....

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