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Sunday, April 14, 2013

Buggy Blues.....

Ever since Pearl arrived, well, ok..... long before that.... I have been wanting a buggy. I remember the one that sat in my Grandfather's shed when I was a kid. It belonged to my Great-Grandfather. When my Dad died in 1972, my mom put it on the sale - against my pleadings to keep it.

I was "too young", she explained.....

It sure would have been nice for her to have listened, to me! I ain't too young no more! I realize that she was going through a tough time, and had to make a lot of decisions, but I sure would have liked to preserve that bit of heritage. I would LOVE to have that thing now, but will need to make do with one I build.

So, to THAT end, I have been scrounging parts from scrap piles, old barns, and Amish men, as well as a lot of "drawing and scratching my head, in order to build my buggy. One - of many - good things about living amongst the Amish, is being able to go over to their place and measure one of their carriages when I need to.

And to be able to ask questions when they arise.

While my buggy won't be "authentic", it will incorporate a lot of old style "engineering.  While I doubt any Amish will be asking me to build one for them, It will fit right in with their style. So far, my BIL Mark and I have put together a frame, we have some half made steps , and my FIL gave me some Cedar boards to plane down for the box (body).

I haven't had TONS of time to work on it, but it is coming along nicely. This afternoon, I managed to get the holes for the frame hangers drilled, and the hangers themselves put on. I just set the springs on the hangers to see what things looked like. Here is the photo - everything is upside down, but you can get the "gist" of it.

Buggy Frame

I hope to get most everything bolted together, then take it all apart to clean and paint.

While I was looking around, I spotted about 50 different designs of buggy steps. Most of them had a square, round or oval "pad" and bolted onto the wooden frame in three spots. The ones I plan on building, are 4" square, and have expanded metal for "tread". I wanted it to be strong, but not "slick" if your shoe was wet. This SHOULD fit the bill.

Buggy Step

Here is a close up of the rear spring. They still need bolted down, but that involves two U-bolts, and I haven't removed them from the old buggy frame I got from an Amish neighbor.

Rear Spring

HOPEFULLY everything will start coming together in the next few weeks --

Pearl wants to go for a drive....

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