Archive for the 'reuse' Category

At The Dump (it’s all happening)

By Tom Read

Lawnmower wheel gets new life as garden gate support, an example of creative re-use made possible by Texada's "heavy metal dump."

Lawnmower wheel gets new life as garden gate support, an example of creative re-use made possible by Texada's "heavy metal dump."

Zebras are reactionaries

Antelopes are missionaries

Pigeons plot in secrecy

And hamsters turn on frequently

What a gas

Ya gotta come and see

At the zoo

From At The Zoo, a song by Paul Simon and Art Garfunkle

Like a certain fictional zoo, much more happens at Texada Island’s heavy metal dump than meets the eye of a casual passerby. Texada’s beloved dump, also known as “Lot 6,” offers a wealth of opportunity for the imaginative and creative visitor.

Earlier this week my friend Jim and I went shopping for wheels and more at the dump. It’s not actual shopping, of course, because everything is free for the taking.  It’s not an actual dump, either, because technically this place is a transfer station. So, thinking of transferring something worthwhile to ourselves, we arrived late one morning for a bit of a boo.

Upon entering the yard suddenly we were in a different world. We beheld treasures. This place is called “the heavy metal dump” because it’s got heaps of scrap metal in various forms, plus car tires, spent car batteries, dead vehicles and battered appliances — but not electronics. No household garbage, either — that’s sacrilege!

Like pilgrims on a mission, we were in search of small but tough wheels for the swinging end of a couple of yet-to-be-built garden gates.  Now, a longish garden gate needs a wheel at the latch end because otherwise the whole structure sags and drags. And what did we see as we entered the sacred grounds of the heavy metal dump? Wheels everywhere! Wheels on castaway lawn mowers, on shopping carts, on and off kids’ bikes, on upended barbeque units, and stand-alone wheels detached from unknown devices, then abandoned hither and yon as casual dump decorations. We filled a five gallon bucket with several most excellent wheels, then moved on to the really good stuff.

I found a roll of thin but strong wire, practically new. Jim found a large, heavy workbench vise with broken innards, but felt certain he could repair it. Then we both came upon the remains of a small trailer, and some distance away, two perfectly serviceable quad tires, already mounted on wheels and axles. Wow! Something magical began to unfold as we picked our way through the jumbled dump. Here, several metal shelves, barely dented; there a compressor off a large truck, worth several hundred dollars if given a little touch-up by a mechanic, and, behold: a set of almost-new truck tires hidden in plain sight.

But the best find of the day came when we discovered two abandoned weed-wackers. It happens that after nine years my gas weed-wacker had recently burned out its ignition coil. Jim surmised, correctly as it turned out, that at least one of these dump delight weed-wackers would have a perfectly good coil. When we got home, he made the switch, so to speak, and now my old weed chopper runs like new.

It’s a happening place, all right. Ya just gotta come and see at the dump!

Much more happens at Texada Island’s heavy metal dump than meets the eye of a casual passerby. Texada’s beloved dump, also known as “Lot 6,” offers a wealth of opportunity for the creative visitor.

Earlier this week my friend Jim and I went shopping for wheels and more at the dump. It’s not actual shopping, of course, because everything is free for the taking.  It’s not an actual dump, either, because technically this place is a transfer station. So, thinking of transferring something worthwhile to ourselves, we arrived late one morning for bit of a boo.

Upon entering the yard suddenly we were in a different world. We beheld treasures. This place is called “the heavy metal dump” because it’s got heaps of scrap metal in various forms, plus car tires, spent car batteries, dead vehicles and battered appliances — but not electronics. No household garbage, either — that’s sacrilege!

Like pilgrims on a mission, we were in search of small but tough wheels for the swinging end of a couple of yet-to-be-built garden gates.  Now, a longish garden gate needs a wheel at the latch end because otherwise the whole structure sags and drags. And what did we see as we entered the sacred grounds of the heavy metal dump? Wheels everywhere! Wheels on castaway lawn mowers, on shopping carts, on and off kids’ bikes, on upended barbeque units, and stand-alone wheels detached from unknown devices, then abandoned hither and yon as casual dump decorations. We filled a five gallon bucket with several most excellent wheels, then moved on to the really good stuff.

I found a roll of thin but strong wire, practically new. Jim found a large, heavy workbench vise with broken innards, but felt certain he could repair it. Then we both came upon the remains of a small trailer, and some distance away, two perfectly serviceable quad tires, already mounted on wheels and axles. Wow! Something magical began to unfold, as we picked our way through the jumbled dump. Here, several metal shelves, barely dented; there a compressor off a large truck, worth several hundred dollars if given a little touch-up by a mechanic, and, behold: a set of almost-new truck tires hidden in plain sight.

But the best find of the day came when we discovered two abandoned weed-wackers. It happens that after nine years my gas weed-wacker had recently burned out its ignition coil. Jim surmised, correctly as it turned out, that at least one of these dump delight weed-wackers would have a perfectly good coil. When we got home, he made the switch, so to speak, and now my old weed chopper runs like new.

It’s a happening place, all right. Ya just gotta come and see at the dump!

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