Monday, February 13, 2017

Our Financial Plan

Updated February 2017  First published November 2010.

A year and a half Eight years ago we took Dave Ramsey financial peace class.  Four Eleven years ago we become debt free.  Ten Many years ago we started paying down our debts faster than the minimum payments.  To manage our money we have used Quicken, MS money, Donor Manager, Dave Ramsey's software, Dave's paper forms, Crown Financial's software, and Crown's paper forms.  We are on our second seventh year of using our own simple one page paper budget each month.   A second quarterly paper form tracks our savings and investing.  A third form, which we have not used since 2006, tracked how much debt we had, principle, interest, and number of payments remaining for each loan.  All three of these forms are Excel documents printable and readable on one page and are the best tools for us to manage our money.

For the most part we follow Dave Ramsey Baby steps.  I STRONGLY recommend following his plan as close as possible, think how many people have been exposed to his plan and succeeded.  The closer we followed his plan the better our life has gone.  Yet I still would do some things differently.  If I could go back and tell my 18 year old self what to do it would be:


0. Make a will, and get a 5 year term life insurance 5x your annual income if you are married or have someone to support.
1. Get and use The Household Money Organizer Workbook.
2. Quickly get to the point that you live on last months income.  What is made in May is spent in June.  What is made in June is spent in July. (This is different than what DR recommends, see #4 below)
3. Have a spending plan.  Each month write a new one. Remember 1/12th of the yearly bills.
4. Have an emergency fund of of $1000 to 1 month income.
5. Pay off every single debt except the house.  Use Dave Ramsey's debt snowball.  While doing this read Dave Ramsey and others to get educated on God's way of handling money.
6. After all the consumer debt (baby step 3) is paid off Boost the term life insurance to 10x your annual income, the end of the term should be about the same time you plan to retire.  Correct me here... I would love to know what he thinks of this.
7. Expand item #2 to be six months.  What is made in January is spent in June, what is made in February is spent in July.
8. Make that emergency fund 6 mo to a year of income.
9. Create sinking funds for the next car / other big purchases.
10. 15% of your pretax income to retirement. Use Gail Jarvis's Saving For Retirement Without Living Like a Pauper method.
11. Help out the kids for college.
12. Pay off the mortgage.
13. Build sinking fund accounts into super-fund accounts. 
14. Retire wealthy.  Be reasonable, if you find yourself with insane amounts of money you need to:

15. Give give give.  Because really that is the goal goal goal of doing this whole thing for me.

I admit I am so frugal I have trouble spending a free gift certificate so having conservative financial practices is not hard for me.

In the fall of 2016 we bought a house, for the past 10 years we were renting.  That puts us in the step 7 - 8 - 10 of our plan.  We used our sinking fund to put down on the house.  I picked up a more expensive hobby, lost my job twice, broke a leg, etc etc... the more faithful we have been to the no debt stance the happier we have been, but I am driving the same car from 1999, wear older clothes, bought less house than we could "afford," the list goes on.  It is a lifestyle, we are not choosing to live like paupers but we don't live like engineers either.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Monitor stand

 Continued tonight on the latest wood project.  For a while I have been resawing boards, gluing, and thickness planing a little each day moving the project forward.   Yesterday I whetted a 1/8th thick piece and set it in some clamps to dry.
Today I cut a grove in the bottom side of the top and cut the sides to mate the four parts together.  I also sanded everything.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

locomotive three

Well after trying to convince myself to not buy it for a year... I did buy it.   A propoane fired Falk built by Jesse Livingston.  He is 87 now and liquidating his locomotives, a shay, a Filer and Stowel, an american, a Newbe and this Falk.  This little guy has a smaller boiler than some G scale locomotives.

A few things need to be fixed in order to steam it.  The bar connecting the drain cocks is bent.  I need the tubing for the propane system, and a regulator.  Need to buy the oils and greases to keep it lubricated.

Long term... a few changes too, the reverse lever interferes with the throttle lever.  The green and red paint.  A better tender.  A displacement lubricator for the gypsy winch.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Glass rack

In the last house we had the ability to hang goblets under the cabinets.  We miss that, well Anna and I do.  So tonight I grabbed a bit of teak and ran it through the table saw to cut to width, then the planer to clean up the thickness, then the table saw to cut a 10 degree angle, and again to cut off a tab, then last I ran the boards through the router with a round over bit.  Nancy thought the boards looked very nice.  All they need is some cleanup sanding, maybe some finish and then they can be mounted under the cabinet.

The teak feels like it is waxed after being cut, what an odd feeling.


I also kept working on the mirror harp for the dresser.  It will be ready for staining and varnish tomorrow.





Monday, January 23, 2017

other stuff

I have been busy in the shop and outside.  Fixing my car, moving rocks in the front yard, turning a top on the vertical lathe, fixing dresser harps, reading books, watching videos, eating, sleeping, working, and playing.  Just no pictures.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Jeffrey Storage Battery Truck Research

Below is a reference to Jeffrey Bulletin 13B in the August 6, 1912 FUEL Magazine talks about how the use of the SBT is about 5 years at the Jeffrey plant.  That narrows the construction to 1905 or 1906



The Jeffrey put out a massive campaign in 1912 talking about use of industrial tracks in place of hand carts, horse carts, etc. a typical example:



I should list all the publications they contacted as there are some interesting names, but I trust google to remember for me.

Sunday, January 08, 2017

dust fan

This weekend I worked on setting filters around a box fan to reduce the airborn dust in the shop area.  It is not done but it is working, with one filter before and after the fan.   It will remove the visible dust, but I do not plan on it filtering out the ultra fine dust.  It is one of three steps of the dust control system.  1, the cyclone for chip removal.  2, the fan for floating dust. 3, an ultra fine dust filter.

Sunday, January 01, 2017

completed projects

 The computer I was using to blog did not want to communicate with my iPhone.  Today I switched to a different computer and I am going back to post past projects.
The key holder is finished.  In my last house I had a my keys on nails in the hall closet, with a bowl for my wallet and change.  In this house we are using an antique furniture and I did not want to add nails.  This is the same oak that I was interested in using as railcar siding so this is a test of methods.  I have to work to choose better stock as this one had wormholes and splits.

 Next is this tool.  Harbor freight has a coupon for bar magnets for holding tools for free with purchase.  I used three of them next to eachother above 1/8th inch plywood.  First I tried to make a body from 2x4 stock but it kept splitting as I screwed in stuff.  I switched to some 3/4" plywood for the body, and the bottom is hinged.
Note that it almost works great.  I found that as I released the door the metal bits will fall towards the floor, and towards the hinge, and it could end up rotating around the door onto the magnets. 

 The setup I used to cut the log into boards.... an 8 ft 3/4" on each end. 

 Nancy took some pictures of me wiring up boxes for shop lights for the shop.  I am not fond of the idea of going into the panel to hook up the circuit so I will utilize the help of Robb, a licensed electrician.  He will also help me in running electric for all the tools.


Well a sad day... no not really, I have kept a 18" x 70" section of HO track, used as a yard in the Bower house On30 layout for the past ten years.  In an effort of cleanup I removed the track and electric from the former closet door.  Now I have a shelf for the shed or I can make a new model railroad.

Dust collection system.
 I have not completed any more.  Well I did two things, I bought an amp meter at harbor freight and a wind meter off the internet.  Reading up on chip collection systems and fine dust removal.  And why it is important to remove both from the shop.
 The fine dust is the real issue, it is about the size of smoke particles and can cause breathing issues throughout the whole house.  With Nancy and two kids with breathing issued already and myself getting sinus infections easily I am looking at what it will take to mitigate the risks.
I think that what I did will be useable, but having the amp meter and wind meter, to which I will be adding a pressure differential gauge (a tube of water) to have the best performing system.

The kids christmas present in the living room.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

projects continued

Today's projects include:
Continuation of working on the key holder to the point of applying finish.
Installing 3 shop lights over the shelving and desk area.
Installing 4 more shelves for shoe boxes adding 24 more spots.
Trying my hand at making two sleds for the table saw. One is off by .016 over 8"  The other I did not measure.
Put the bench grinder together and placed it on the arbor vice stand where it lived before.
Reading an email from Grizzly about dust collection system design.
Some cleaning of the shop.
Tearing apart the On30 yard on a door that has sat unused in a corner of the basement for over 10 years.

Yesterday I fixed a mirror of Nancy's.  The glass was loose, I copied the original method and installed three wedges per side to hold the glass and reinstalled the cardboard backing.

Monday, December 26, 2016

key holder

Today because I am still uncertain if I am doing the right thing with the ductwork I put on a dust mask, onion rings, safety glasses, and hearing protection and cut up one of my pieces of oak.  


First I ripped it into four pieces on the bandsaw.  
Used the jointer and then the planer to make them a consistent thickness.  
Added lap joints.
Then glued them together into 9x27 and 13 x 13 inch panels.
I took a bath while waiting for the glue to set.
Then I cleaned the parts up with the planer and hand sander.

Then I started work on making a crosscut sled for my table saw.  
The whole time I had woodworking videos playing on youtube.
And I did not take a single picture.

Tomorrow I will use the sled and finish the project.