Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Flying the Flag

It was Canada day yesterday. A time for all patriotic Canadians to fly their flag. And that is just what we did. It took me three days to do it but I got her done. How hard can it be? not real hard unless you want to go a little bit over board like I did.

You see a year ago I bought a flag because it was Canada Day and I like flags (although I think Canada's flag is a little boring compared to some) and I like it when people fly flags. So I bought a flag and it came with a 4 foot pole and a bracket to allow you to mount it on a building. Well last year at this time I had just finished my skirting on the old trailer and I mounted the flag on that. Then I up and sold the old trailer and had to take my flag down. There was no place to mount the bracket on the new trailer or on the deck as I did not want to try to drill holes in everything. So after careful consideration I decided to mount it on the deck railing. That part was easy the how to burned out a few more brain cells. All I had to do was mount a board on the railing attache the bracket and I was in business.

Easier said than done. I devised several methods of mounting a backer board. All very complicated and none of them that would not mark up the railing. I was concerned that If the railing was all full of holes it would detract from the resale value. Yeah like I'm going to sell the place! It will be in my will. So Ellen will get it but that is another issue. Anyway I still wanted to find a way to mount it without scaring the aluminum railing. Also the pickets in the rail are solid aluminum and more than not wanting to mar them I knew they would be the devil to work with. So I thought about it off an on for a while since last September. And I came up with a solution this weekend. Hose clamps.

I decided that if I attached hose clamps to the backer board and then clamped them to the uprights I would be able to accomplish my goal. But I ran into a problem. The spindles are only 3/4 of an inch or so and a clamp small enough to go on them was nigh impossible to work with. First off you can't open it completely then put it back together because the bend is too tight to get the screw started again. Trust me. I have the cuts and blood stains to prove it. So I had to go with a clamp that was really too big for the job. Now how do you tighten it so that it holds snugly. the Answer was Hose. If I put a small piece of hose around the spindle where I wanted to attach it I could clamp the hose to the spindle and voila. But can you imagine they don't sell short lengths of rubber hose? At least in Sundre they don't. They will sell you a 25 foot garden hose that you can cut down but that was pretty wasteful. So I looked around the hardware store.

Hardware stores are great places to browse. They have all manner of wonderful things. Most of them have no relevance to this story. But it was still fun to browse. What I found in my search was rubber strapping that is used to repair rubber hose. That was the solution to my problem. I wrapped the spindlles in the rubber strappping. I made the wrap large enough to accomodate the large clamps and that did the trick. With four clamps attahce to the backer board I clamped the backer to the rail and that did the job.

Oh yeah the backer was 3 foot by 10 inches. Now if you are thinking that is an awful lot of space to be hanging a Flag bracket on you're right. I could have got by with a piece about 10 by 10 but where's the fun in that. Here is what I came up with!

And here are a few more details on how I did it. Now my sign is completely removeable and won't mar the railing spindles.

Oh yes the name, well we are Beagle people and it just seemed appropriate. And Belle and Dixie like it just fine.

Relaxing on my finally finished deck....