You know what’s really annoying after a big natural event?

After you have assessed damages, done clean up, hopefully got your power back soon enough and are on your way to some sort of normalcy? Packing your stuff.

Of course, it is not just “trow shit in the box and put it away.” It needs to be properly cleaned, preserved if needed, replace spent items and even improved on stuff you already have.

IE: I realized that my seriously hand-made heavy-duty extension cord was missing from action. I did happen to have plenty of spare cable from another job and the male and female plugs I had as spares were used. Now they need to be replaced.

Somehow some humidity got in the generator’s gas tank and it was performing a bit roughly. I had to go out and cruise around till I found an open gas station and bought two small containers of gas treatment. That solved the problem and one is now stored in the Generator box of stuff.

And yes, in the next couple of days, the generator’s gas tank will be emptied and the oil changed before storing it. I am also making the tires flat-free because South Florida weather will ruin rubber like termites to cheap wood.

What is on my list to buy? An adapter to fill the 1 lb propane bottles from your BBQ propane bottle. And I need to look for an adapter hose to connect the gas stove to the regular BBQ propane bottle. I would love to have both options.

Another Streamlight Siege lamp will be bought. I can’t stop singing the praises of this little thing.

Maybe another pair of good gloves just to leave in the hurricane kit. A back up for the back up of the originals.

Something always go wrong, but this time it was non-consequential. The stove’s knobs came apart, I am guessing cheap plastic. I did not enjoy having to use pliers to get some cooking done, but I remembered I had 2 bass guitar volume knobs somewhere in a closet from a AK safety lever modification project from years go. The fit was tight enough a mallet was needed to convince the knobs to go in. Don’t knock it, it worked.

Some clean ups are bigger than mine.

6 Replies to “You know what’s really annoying after a big natural event?”

  1. That which does not kill you, makes you stronger, or some philosophical BS like that anyway.

    Consider that you had the equivalent of a “live fire exercise” exposing the weaknesses – and strengths – of your plans.

  2. Every hurricane i’ve been thru here in Floriduh was a learning experience. Irma showed me that although i felt prepared, i can do better.
    Thanks Miguel for the suggestions. I need to get a few of them siege lamps. Flashlights are good but these will make a nice addition to my prep kit.

  3. I’ve suggested that people who went through the hurricanes sit down and have a debrief. Write down all the stuff they wish they had, had done, had learned, ect.
    Then, next year around June, read through the list and plan accordingly, when prices are cheap, everything is in stock, and there’s time to replace what broke.

    Having an idea of how much fuel your genset uses per hour is a good thing as well.

    As for the genset, when end of the season comes, you’ll want some fuel stabiliser and some fogging oil. Put the stabilizer in the tank, run the genset till hot, then shut it down, pull the sparkplug, and spray the fogging oil inside the cylinder. Crank it a couple of times without the plug, then close it up. Drain the tank and put the fuel in your car or lawnmower.

  4. RE: putting the generator away. Try this: empty the tank, drain the carburetor (some engines don’t have a float bowl drain, you’ll have to remove the float bowl), empty the fuel filter if it has one – some of the Hondas, Yamahas, etc. have a petcock with a filter bowl – disconnect and drain the fuel line to the carb, then with the fuel line disconnected, spark plug still in the cylinder head (it needs to be installed to get good vacuum) the choke closed and the throttle held open crank the engine through several times. This will pull the last of the fuel out of the carb passages so the passages are dry, otherwise the tiny amount of fuel left in the passages will turn to gum. Then remove the spark plug, squirt Joe in PNG’s Fogging Oil in the cylinder, crank through a couple times, re-install the spark plug, let it sit in the sun with the gas tank open for a while to make sure the tank is not just empty but dry, inspect and/or change the oil, it’s all set for storage.

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