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What's the stupidest thing you're ever done in your shop?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by rockable, Sep 12, 2010.

  1. guitar man
    Joined: Sep 13, 2010
    Posts: 210

    guitar man
    from Tulsa OK

    A burnout :eek:

    had just finished changing out a tranny and wanted to test it out, it was raining cats and dogs outside so I decided to smoke 'em up on the dry concrete . I had a few, well, more than a few cold ones by then so my reaction time wasn't what it should have been.

    Long story short, it got away, and me, a '63 Ford f100, a brand new air compressor I had just bought and other various and assorted things wound up going through the back wall of the shop and wound up in the back yard against the fence.
    When that air tank ruptured it sounded like a cannon shot, I thought I was dead for a minute!:eek::eek::D
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2010
  2. vtwinpartss
    Joined: Nov 18, 2008
    Posts: 335

    from NOR CAL

    I let a friend of 10 years rent half of my shop from me......boy did I get screwed.
  3. Not calling friends to perform major tasks!
    I have removed the body from my 34 twice by lifting the whole body and chassis, supporting the body and then lowering the frame. The last time left a permanent scar on my forearm.

    Put my convertible off the frame and back on and onto a rotisserie myself several times. Typically these are several hour events, using gravity, leverage, and basic physics to your advantage.

    I put the big block back into the chassis by blocking the motor on the floor and lifting the chassis over it (because I could lift the chassis) and then raising it into place to install the fasteners.

    Simple phone call would make it a lot easier.... I Just don't like asking for favors.
  4. jdj9410
    Joined: Sep 4, 2007
    Posts: 324

    from Paris TX

    Grabbed an air hose and uncoiled several feet off the holder on the wall. Think I have enough. Head for rear of car and end up about a coil too short. No problem I'll whip the hose and get a coil of the hanger without walking back. Had about a foot of hose hanging down with quick coupler on the end. Whipped a good hard pop at the bracket and the tag end of hose snapped the quick coupler hard into the left nut. Hit the floor like a sack of wet cement with a horrible pain from the affected area up to my left side and couldn't get any air. Couldn't speak or yell even. Hit it real hard. Boss didn't see it happen but walked by just afterwards. Didn't say anything or act like anything out of ordinary, like folks writhing around in excruciating pain on the floor everyday is normal. Hurt for hours afterward worst pain in life. And I even shattered a knee once jumping off 4 wheeler traveling 50+ mph that stuck on the back of a sprint car. That pain was bad but not even comparable.
  5. elmitcheristo
    Joined: Nov 10, 2007
    Posts: 351


    This last winter I was helping my dad put a new 235 in his 53 Chevy truck. We had the old 216 straight six out and needed to pull some parts off of it. A guy that I work with had just given me his "old junk engine stand." This is one of the cheap engine stands with only three wheels and the awkward straight six was mounted up nice and high. I used a pry-bar to turn the engine over and what do you know. That engine stand went over lightning quick while I was kneeling down next to it. I jumped back and when it landed, one of the rocker arms went through the top of my foot crushing one of the tarsal bones. I was off of work for three months but at least it didn't land on my head. While I was at the hospital, a few friends stopped by to help clean up my garage and pick the engine/stand back up. And she went over again. Beware of the three wheeled free engine stands!

  6. barry mazza
    Joined: May 18, 2006
    Posts: 130

    barry mazza

    Was alone working in the shop. Had a floor jack shoved way under a severly dropped 50 Merc, lowered as much as you could with double stack of blocks and de arched springs. The frame was setting on jack stands.
    Pulled out the stands and got down on the floor to remove the jack , turned the handle only "a little" jack colapsed down pinning me under the gas tank and bumper.
    Super panic set in as I was getting crushed, tried to turn but was stuck. Big time panic freaking out yelling and screaming but, no one around. The more I tried to turn the worse it got.
    Finally chilled out and just could get my fingers on the jack handle and starting to try and get it to go up with little tiny pumps. Good thing is was an old American made cause 1/4 inch by 1/4 inch it came up enough to get out.
    Very stupid , I remembered that still to this day, could have been all over under the friggin Merc.
  7. Wheelie
    Joined: Nov 26, 2008
    Posts: 234

    from Dallas

    Poured a whole bottle of aviation sealer on my new dickies, literally bought them the day before. If you ever use aviation sealer you know how this shit is. I also grabbed a hot bearing race stuck on a spindle that a co worker heated up and didnt f'in tell me. I had a blister on my palm that literally bubbled up a good 3 inches. Went back to work immediately after quick hospital visit. Turned wrenches one handed for about a month.
  8. traffic61
    Joined: Jun 15, 2009
    Posts: 1,514

    from Owasso, OK

    Not my shop, but my brother in law's shop. This past July 4th, we were making oxy/acetylene balloons which were then tied to a pair of helium filled balloons for lift. A fuse roughly two feet long was duct-taped to the fuel balloon, lit and the release was made. Detonation was usually at an altitude of about 50 feet and about 100 feet or so downrange. Really impressive, foolish, but impressive none the less.

    The weather had been rainy all day and it cleared up around 6:00 PM, so we went to work being idiots. It has been a rarity for an injury free Fourth to occur for about six years now. Around 9:00 we decided to make another balloon bomb. My brother in law went to work on the explosive balloon and I set about rigging up the helium balloons.

    As I was topping off a balloon, I heard a pop, then felt a huge pressure wave hit me, followed by the loudest ringing in my ears since Jethro Tull back in 1980. The balloon detonated prematurely in my brother in laws hands. Sort of like a personal Hindenberg. The shop had this funky haze and we just all sort of staggered out and said "Huh?" to almost every question that wasn't yelled at us. It scared the crap out of the kids who were watching. Oddly, he had no scorch marks and no significant damage that we could determine. That was when we noticed he had a few burn marks on his favorite T-Shirt. He lifted it up and his stomach was covered with hundreds of small lacerations. It looked like damn near every blood vessel in that area ruptured. I did not ask him what it looked like below the belt, I had this image of Darth Vader's old fellow. It took a while, but he healed up nicely. Oddly, both of us have had weird sinus congestion ever since and the occasional return of ringing in the ears. For some reason, whenever we talk of the incident, the "Jackass" theme runs through my head.

    All that we could determine was that when he flipped the balloon around to tie it off, it had rubbed against his shirt and static electricity set it off. He had one of those "virtually indestructable" Otter Boxes for is iPhone on his belt at the time. It was blown off and broken, the iPhone sustained no damage. I figure they won't want to use this as a testimonial. I told my wife that I do not want to try to top this year, so I am retiring from the pyrotechnical end of the celebration. She tells me that I have a short memory. She's probably right.
  9. Lowriders Art Gallery
    Joined: Apr 9, 2010
    Posts: 612

    Lowriders Art Gallery
    from Montana

    You know how that little voice tells you to quit but you don't? Working on the garage roof, with a skilsaw cutting plywood. Wind started picking up, and I knew I should quit. Just one more cut and I'll be finished with this side. Started cutting, wind grabbed the plywood, saw jumped and went right across my left leg. I was up on the roof, alone , and miles from help. Decided it was time to grow a pair. Knew better than to look. I just casually reached down, and pulled everything back together. Drove to the neighbors, and was doing all right. Neighbors friend had lost an arm and part of a leg in a bad motorcycle wreck years earlier. Neighbor said lets see how bad it is. His friend said "Oh shit", that's when I knew it was bad. We traveled over 35 miles in a clapped out Subaru wagon, on dirt roads to the hospital. Made it in 18 minutes. The ride should have killed everyone. Only one Doctor and a sadistic nurse working. She scrubbed the leg with a wire brush, then stabbed me with pain killer. Doctor had a bigger emergency, she stabbed me again. I got stabbed five times before the Doctor was available. Intern came in, asked how I did it. I told him on a table saw. He came back about five minutes later and asked again. Told the nurse to quit stabbing me with the needle and start stitching instead. Told her I preferred tuck and roll. No laugh or anything. This happened over twenty years ago. Now I have neuropathy, and this leg drives me crazy. When you hear the little voice pay attention.
  10. Mark68
    Joined: Sep 12, 2010
    Posts: 130


    I've done a few of these- a tablesaw met my left thumb last year while cutting the new flooring for the kitchen. I was feeding the board in manually and reached around the blade to finish the cut when the board kicked a little and for some reason i tried to stop it by smacking my hand down on the board,By now i'm sure you realize that my thumb went down directly on the blade.Luckily i set the blade so it just poked through the board less than an 1/8" and the blade took some meat but never found bone.I still have minimal feeling in the tip of that thumb.
    Another good one was i guy i worked with in a chevy dealership back in 88.We worked in the new car get ready dept.and on occasion we would have to install/swap accessories for a waiting customer.This guy got the job of swapping a painted rear step bumper for a chrome one on a full size chevy pu.He proceeds to put the truck in the air on the lift high enough that he could stand under it,gets out his air gun and pulls out all the mounting bolts without supporting the bumper or lowering the truck and asking for help.So the bumper swung down and got him in the shoulder and back of his head knocking him down before it came completely off and hit the ground just behind him. He seemed ok aside from having his bell rung but then said this-- "no one told me the bumper would fall if i took out all the bolts" he went out on disability and i never saw him again.

  11. youreviltwin
    Joined: Oct 21, 2008
    Posts: 69

    from fl

    ive got a few.

    dropped a 25 gallon fuel tank from a suburban that was 3/4 full from the tranny jack as i was putting it back up. took me a while to wash out all the gas from the shop before someone blew it up.

    i bolted a swap i was bringing out of a car wrong and dropped the engine through the bay as i was jacking up the cherry picker. luckily it was the old motor that was being replaced but i didnt crush anything

    and i have to say the straight stupidest thing ive ever done was under the influence of alcohol i tried to cut a pipe with a chop saw and didnt notice how hard i was actually pushing down and ended up shattering the chop saw blade as i was croutched over right between my legs as it sat on the floor and took a chunk of the blade on my thigh about 5 inches from the jewels had shards of chopsaw blade in my arms. that was the scariest. from that point on once we start drinking after work no power tools were or are to be used anymore.
  12. barry mazza
    Joined: May 18, 2006
    Posts: 130

    barry mazza

    DUMB THING #2.. Putting a new rear into a car for a customer, car rear cribbed up on a steep angle. Kept smelling gas in the shop when I would go in. Looking around found no leaks or spots on the floor.
    Smell got so strong that I had to find it, turned out that the 1/2 inch fuel line through the electric pump had filled up the engine with fuel. The car on a steep forward incline.
    In my rush to get the gas out of the engine I decided to pull then plugs and hit the starter and hope it would blow the gas out the cylinders.
    I dropped all the plug wires down, [Caddy engine], got in the car to hit the starter and well what do you think?? It did turn over..... Forgot the coil.........booooom!!!
    Instant garage fire and I mean burning all over this guys finders and firewall not to mention my garage ceiling.
    After firing off 5 powder units and not getting anywhere, my helper grabbed his Halon out of his car and we were able to put it out.
    However , lots of damage and talk about scary stupid shit, my house was connected to the shop. Wood frame, would have been the whole friggin place burning.
    Hey , fun with cars.............can't beat it, like paying someone to beat your ass!!!
  13. Big Nick
    Joined: Sep 7, 2005
    Posts: 847

    Big Nick

    cleaning up a cut I just made on a motorcycle fender and said I dont need my mask, this will be quick, the angle grinder has a 60 grit flap disk on it, caught the fender, jumped out of my hand, rode up my neck and across my cheek and up the side of my head and down over my ear. Left a nice welt but i have no idea how it didnt break skin, I wear that mask all the time now.

    Also just Sunday I put a Sporster motor in a rigid frame, as I was lining up the rear motor mounts the front slipped jamming my thumb between the motor and the rear mount and the front was no locked in place, so I had to use my right hand to pull my left thumb out. Luckily I just bruised up the nail and the nerve as I have no feeling in the finger, I should have dont that the correct way instead of being so impatient.
  14. SoCal desert dweller in the 80's wearing my 'Hang Ten' corduroy shorts and no scivvies.

    Working safely though, had some welding gloves on my feet since I was wearing Jap-Flaps. Welded on my car trailer most of the day. If I'd only had a welding helmet for my nuts...
  15. mtkawboy
    Joined: Feb 12, 2007
    Posts: 1,213


    Shot a 44 magnum in the dark of a metal garage into a garbage can to see how loud & bright it would be. No one could hear or see for quite some time
  16. mason-d
    Joined: Jul 22, 2009
    Posts: 146

    from san diego

    pulled a 265 sbc out of the bed of my truck without and engine lift with a friend and forgot that my name wasnt arnold schwarzenegger, his gripped slipped and well, thank the good lord for steel toed boots. lesson lerned take 5 minutes to hook it up to the lift.
  17. Leevon
    Joined: Oct 5, 2009
    Posts: 400

    from Nixa, MO

    It's not the stupidest ever but it's recent so I still wince when I think about it. I got a fulton-type visor for my '50 pickup and couldn't wait to see it on the cab. The cab was just mocked-up, sitting on a frame which was on jackstands. I needed to support the visor so it wouldn't buckle and I grabbed the nearest step I could find - a 5 gallon bucket, on a slick concrete floor, DUH. As I'm just about to set the visor down in place, reaching across the windshield the bucket takes off and there's no fenders or anything to stop my descent into the frame and all the other hard sharp crap laying around. I go about 280lbs so I hit hard, bruised the crap out of my side and cut my arm and walked around funny for a couple days. To add insult the visor crashed down on my head.

    My wife was standing 10 feet away, maybe next time I'll ask her for a hand. :eek:
  18. 49ratfink
    Joined: Feb 8, 2004
    Posts: 18,100

    from California

    one stupid thing I did was take the gaurd off my bench grinder to use it as a buffer. I had to cut it off, so there was no putting it back on.

    some time later I needed to grind something so I put the grinding wheel back on. lucky for me I have a thing about rapidly spinning objects and not being in a direct line with where they are spinning. I stood to the side and hit the go button and that wheel broke in half in a split second and went flying across the garage and hit the wall with a big BANG!

    lessons learned here are to stand to the side when powering up equipment and don't take the gaurd of your bench grinder.

    while we are on the subject of grinding and polishing here's a tale if a person who just does not think. I have a big Baldor polisher on a stand. I rolled it over by the big door hoping that the polishing mess will go outside and blow away in the wind. I am polishing a stainless fender spear from a 49 Chevy. I have the fender spear kind of on the bottom of the wheel, pointy side away from me. my idiot buddy comes up in direct line with the spinning buffing wheel and starts talking as if there are no spinning objects with spears pressed against them in the area. if it had slipped it would have speared him right in the stomach. I asked him if he thought that was a good place to be standing and he shrugged it off and kept talking.

    I stopped what I was doing and waited til he left.
  19. oldpl8s
    Joined: Apr 11, 2007
    Posts: 1,405


    I had a similar situation, just a few more minutes with the Skilsaw, until I cut through the cord to a shower of sparks. Listen to your little voice and finish another day

  20. yardgoat
    Joined: Nov 22, 2009
    Posts: 724


    Done that also,quick tan,faster than any tanning bed.HURTS bad..........YG
  21. yardgoat
    Joined: Nov 22, 2009
    Posts: 724


    Had to put a trans in a vw beatle and had it on floor jacks.Friend borrowed my floor jack so had to get under trans and just press it up in position.It was the old swing axel,so no wheels or tires on rear of car,almost there just 1 inch forward and the car started moving forward,NO wheel blocks up front.Ijust got out but my hair was pined to the floor by the bumper.Had to cut it with my pocket knife to get up.Ididnt thank the Lord then cause i didnt know better,I DO NOW. ,but he saved me,that was close.........YG
  22. Went to a wood lot to pick up my Woodmizer sawmill. i didn't take my 4x4 3/4t but my 64 Acadian wagon. It was Friday night and I was in a hurry as I had stuff i wanted to do and had to get ready for a job on the weekend.
    Hurried in the logging road to fast and the crossmember pulled a granite rock out of the ground about the size of a bread box and rolled the entire length of the car. the oil pan and one side of the dual exhaust got flattened. As it was passing underneath I looked at the gauges and the oil pressure went to zero. Turned the car off since the sump pick up was knocked off the pump, no major damage done to the engine. Turned the car around and coasted down to the enterance of the road (still on a hill) and parked the car. It gets better.
    I go home and get my truck and tow bar. I realize I have to remove the driveshaft to flat tow the car so I crawl under the rear and proceed to remove the driveshaft. When I yank the driveshaft out the car disappears from above me heading down a large hill and into the back of the 3/4 ton ball hitch on my truck damaging the grill.
    I kind of realize that fact that I use to indulge in herb in those days probably was the root cause. I had to buy a new oil pan and muffler and part of the exhaust and I was up and running again. I am amazed at times I made it to 50.
  23. nofin
    Joined: Jan 7, 2010
    Posts: 321

    from australia

    Lets just say that its not a good idea to beat out a fire on the front of your trousers caused by welding slag trapped there when leaning against a van mig welding a patch into a driprail, especially not with the hand holding a hammer...

    Safety tip: give the grinding wheel a "ring" test before you put it on the grinder. Hang the wheel off something, or just hold it on a screwdriver or something through the hole and tap it with a hammer. It should ring like a bell. If it makes a dull thud noise it means its cracked, and will come apart at speed.
    Joined: Jul 14, 2010
    Posts: 19


    stuff like this is why i started shaving my head at 16
  25. 35ihcc1
    Joined: Aug 27, 2010
    Posts: 19


    I wanted to wire wheel the top of my welding table for grounding one night. I rolled my truck, welder, and just about everything in my garage outside and started to tip the table over. While I was lowering it I didn't realize how heavy a 4'x6' 3/8 table could fell and caught my middle finger under it. Well I couldn't lift it by myself so I had the bright idea to just pull my finger out....bad idea. My finger split and the table squeezed the meat out like a tube of toothpaste. Do you know how hard it is to push a full steel truck back in a garage with one hand?
  26. Mr.Musico
    Joined: Jan 7, 2007
    Posts: 1,607

    from SoCal

    filled a latex glove at the end of a broom stick with acetylene and lit it ..ears were ringing for several days
  27. gasser38
    Joined: Jan 13, 2008
    Posts: 94


    I pulled a pretty dumb stunt yesterday. Been customizing a bicycle for my daughter. Went to spread some spot filler on it. Had a small tube of the red stuff about the size of a tube of silicone. Also had a tube of red silicone laying on the bench about the size of a small tube of spot filler. You can put two and two together. Spread quite a bit of it on there before I realized what I'd done. Don't know if I've ever felt that stupid before.
  28. When building the trans tunnel on the rod in my avatar. Dad was heating the sheet with a torch and I was on the outside with a crowbar bending it into place. It was heavy gauge stuff so it took a lot of heat to get it to bend. We get it just about right and I laid the crow bar down (red hot).

    Went to the tool box to grab something and when I came back dad decided we needed to bend it a bit more. So I grab the crow bar....

    ....and burned the shit out of my palm. It was no longer glowing but still hotter'n hell.

    I was only about 12 years old....and thereafter I would always test out every crow bar before I picked it up to see if it was hot. LOL
  29. fatman1
    Joined: May 18, 2010
    Posts: 15

    from hiram ohio

    well here is one of my dumber stunts. one night in the garage i was working on stretching a new Harley gas tank, i just got welding it and pressurized it checking it for leaks, found a couple pin holes. so i go and start welding the pin holes next thing i know im sitting on the floor. All that i remember was a loud pop and a sudden pain in my chest. What happened in my rush I forgot to release the ir from the tank and it EXPANDED sending the rubber plug that i was using to block off the fill opening into my chest. from now on i am much wiser
  30. Lord Purple
    Joined: Sep 22, 2006
    Posts: 201

    Lord Purple

    Another jack stand story....

    Took my '34 out of the garage the other Saturday for a local trip and noticed the fan belt was squealing a bit, just a quick adjustment.....
    The lower alternator bolt is awkward so put a jack under the I-beam and lifted the car up off the floor. I was reaching under the car from behind the front wheel nipping up the bolt when bang it slips back off the jack and the chassis rail slaps my head from above my left ear diagonally down past my eye tearing up some flesh in the process. It was so close to my eyelid an eye Doc had to sew it up.

    The stitches were removed yesterday.


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