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We Are Flying Solo

May 24, 2015

Prize Giveaway! Guess The Time To “Brilliant Redneck Solution…Fail”

It seemed like such a good idea at the time…

I know, you’ve probably never used that sentence.  Heh.  But here’s your chance to profit from yet another of my ingenious ideas!

Your prize:  a $10 gift card to SmartPak…and my admiration for your thorough knowledge of idea fail.
My endless love...

To Be Fair, It Was A Good Idea

Arriving home from work a couple weeks ago, I discovered that apparently a chupacabra had attempted to jump my fence.

Drawing by Michael Lee (2007)
SRSLY!  It was the only conclusion I could draw from the evidence.  For newcomers, my fencing is primarily the pre-existing & perfectly built hi-tensile wire, lined with a strand of bi-polar HorseGuard tape (Best. Product. Ever.); only the tape is hot.

I walked out the back door & found the top two wires (this is heavy-duty 12 mm galvanized wire) were snapped clean off about 1” from the corner & the tape had been snagged & stretched. 

Fortunately, HorseGuard is extremely well made, so while stretched, no wires or nylon fibres were broken, so that was a simple 5-minute job to re-tension.  Wire…less simple.

Epic Richard being epic
Thanks to Solo’s awesome Minion & wonderful neighbour, Richard (who has the big, professional wire crimpers), I spliced the wires back together & was able to repair the tensioners (I can’t remember if I’ve posted my discoveries about the amazing safety features of correctly-installed hi-tensile [post#17 in link]– but there are a lot, thank goodness!) that gave as designed when Mr. Chupacabra barged in.

What Really Happened?

Honestly, I still don’t know for certain.  Our deer are fairly small.  The damage was exactly the same as when Solo jumped through the fence when we first moved in.  :/  But he was still in (unless he jumped out, then back in?), there were no hoofprints of any kind on the outside, & neither horse had a mark on them.

See – chupacabra.

Let The Games Begin

The final missing piece was a pair of nails that held the wire insulator to the post.  At least I think so.  The insulator was pulled off, meaning the nails would have been ripped out.  However, because the wire fence came with the land, a few of the insulators are not nailed on anymore.  Naturally, I don’t remember if this was a loose one before or not.

Thx, Northern Tool!
But horses…nails…I had to do a thorough search.  I’d returned the borrowed giant draggy magnet I used to clean up after house construction, but I do have a very strong magnetic dish for studs that is also handy for random “I dropped another steel thing” jobs. 

Just holding it though, means I have to walk around bent over, holding it close to the ground.  Back arthritis.  Ow.  And it’s small.  So “let’s get creative, what can possibly go wrong?”

You’d think that’d be a warning flag, would you?

Tell me that's not genius
Brilliant Idea

Hey, it’s a magnet – why don’t I stick it to a shovel & then I don’t have to bend over?  OH SNAP!  I have to bush-hog that field, why don’t I snap it to the bottom of the tractor bucket:  TWO-FOR-ONE!

I was oh-so-careful, sticking the dish to the bottom corner of the FEL (Front End Loader) so I could see the edge from the driver’s seat.  I needed to keep a careful eye on it because it would require keeping the bucket extremely close to the ground to work, with frequent adjustments in order to not bump the ground & pull it off.

Because one of the first Laws Of Tractor Use is “anything you attempt to attach/use with a tractor will inevitably fall off/be dropped & you will run it over.”  Yeah, I bet you’ve done it.  But NO!  I was not going to let that happen, I was going to be vigilant!

Well, the Tractor Laws are like the Laws of Physics:  non-negotiable.

How To Win

In case it’s not blindingly obvious yet, yes, my dish is now, um, a different & distinctly flatter shape than it once was.  Hey, why does a magnet dish need edges anyway, it’s still magnetic?!

To enter:  in the comments, you get to guess how long I was proud of myself before I felt a thump & yelled “NOOOO!”  The closest person to elapsed time between idea implementation & idea fail wins!  You will have ten days from the time of posting to put in your guess.

Bring the noise.


  1. I bet that thing that broke that there fence was....ten foot tall. He had beautiful hair.

    For the rest of ya :)

    1. Would you like me to draw you a picture?? Haahahahha!

  2. Hahha! Oh no! Well, my guess is 9 minutes :) And that's based on how long it took for the large plastic flowerpot I was standing on to collapse under me, ruining my sense of pride ;)

    1. Ah yes, that is how I learned you cannot stand on those black Fortiflex buckets. :/ LOL!

  3. Ugh - mistakenly stood on a (soon to collapse) flipped over bucket while clipping once...

    Super embarrassing - plus as I landed inside the bucket, trapped, I waited for a flailing horse to stomp me while breaking the cross ties in a giant freak out. (he didn't bat an eyelash btw)

    I'm gonna say 3:30 ;D

  4. I'm going to say approximately thirty seconds because that's how long it would have stayed on there without getting destroyed if I was driving!

  5. Great idea, too bad about the tractor physics!

    I'm going to guess an optimistic 5 minutes of success

  6. Oh no - I hate it when my genius inventions backfire horrifically (tho they always do...). Guessing 7 minutes

  7. A glorious 2 minutes before it fell off!

  8. ROFLMAO, the optimist gives me five whole minutes! Dang, I'm even infamous for fail on the interwebz, hahaha! Are the masses right...or is there hope for me yet? (there's a loaded rhetorical question)

  9. That sounds like something I would do! I'll guess 12 minutes

  10. Ahahahaha. I'm going with 45 seconds. This seems like one of those instant fistpump-to-ohcrap situations. :)

    1. Hahahahhaha, dang! Although aforementioned attempt to stand on a small Fortiflex bucket lasted all of about 4 seconds. Ow.

  11. I'll be crazy and say 25 minutes, just because no one has guessed high yet.

    1. Oooo, going for broke & bidding high, I like it! ;P

  12. I'm going to guess 10 minutes. Brilliant idea, by the way! :-)

  13. Sounds like a brilliant idea to me! I'm gonna get all crazy and say 45 mins because what the heck!

  14. Dagnabbit... SmartPak has something against us Canadians, so no guess :(

  15. My guess is going to be 15 minutes. Been there done that, broke my ankle is three places. It was an excellent idea at the time. Surgery, permanent hardware, 3 years later and I can totally tell you when its going to rain. Not so much a good idea anymore.

    1. Ow. I've got one of those internal barometers too (see Solo's last Training HT in May 2011) -- useful, but damn, it hurts. They need to hurry up & figure out how to grow new cartilage already.

  16. Oh man, don't you just hate when you think you have a BRILLIANT idea, and then you do it and you're face palming yourself being such an idiot? I do that ALL THE TIME.