We assumed the term “Borg” was widely understood. It’s used pejoratively for giant home store chains who overshadow smaller hardware stores. It refers specifically to the fictitious cyborg race from “Star Trek: The Next Generation” who “assimilated” other cultures into their own. However, the specific etymology spawned some differing opinions.
“Their traveling space vehicle was a huge black cube” explained Jerry Kershner. Just as the Borg were recognized by their large, square vehicle, so do we recognize the boxy look of Home Depot and Lowe’s storefronts. However, reader Mark Burge insisted that Borg “technically only refers to Home Depot. It is an acronym for Big Orange Retail Group, tying it to Home Depot’s orange color scheme,” as opposed to Lowe’s blue color scheme.
Gee, I wonder how the Blue Oversized Retail Group feels about that. – Editor
After John Brock said gluing Western red cedar for exterior furniture was one of the few times he would recommend using Gorilla Glue®, Ronnie Thompson asked “Why does he not recommend using it more often?” John replied ” I think Gorilla Glue is an excellent product and is the right choice under specific situations, primarily outdoor projects where its waterproof properties are important. I would not use it for indoor projects, gap-filling situations, or anywhere reversal might be needed. For indoor glue-ups I prefer hide glue (super strong and reversible) or a tried-and-true aliphatic resin glue like Titebond. Both are easy to use, very strong, easy to store, have minimal mess, and low-cost. Besides, no matter how careful I am, I always manage to get glue on my fingers and Gorilla Glue stains them badly.”
Rich Flynn wrote in to offer a suggestion for dealing with polyurethane glue stain. “To remove the stain on your fingers from any of the polyurethane glues (e.g. Gorilla), just wear some latex or nitrile gloves for a few hours. Make sure that your hands really work up a sweat. When you take the gloves off, the stain will be gone.
Of course, if we already had latex or nitrile gloves around the shop, we’d consider wearing them during the glue-up. We hear that works, too. – Editor
Solvent Disposal Redux
Someone named Mike Butts, who identified himself as a career firefighter, pointed out that “mixing used solvents with Kitty Litter and disposing of it in the trash only produces a five gallon bucket of hazardous waste. Kitty Litter does not make substances nonhazardous. It only absorbs them. Disposing of it in the trash is not only environmentally unsound, it is also illegal. Please dispose of solvents safely.”
We heartily agree, though to be fair, the original writer implied that he lets the litter dry first, using it only as an evaporation media, and not an absorption media. Specifically, he said “Turn the litter every day or so until the solvent is evaporated&” – Editor
Pepperidge Farm DOES Remember
Peter Johnson wanted to know if any one remembered a Black and Decker accessory for drilling perpendicular holes.
“I do” replied Lee Gibbons, “mainly because I have one.”
Scott Glasgow also piped up, saying “Not only do I remember that accessory, I still have mine. It’s a kind of brownish smoked plastic, about eight or nine inches high, and the cup section is a little over five inches high. It’s not something you need often, but when you do it’s pretty handy.”
Gerald Kornelsen walked us down memory lane with his comments. “The drill accessory was called the DrillMate. I still have mine. I also have the RouterMate, a straight-edge gizmo, and the WorkMate. I used to have all the B&D power hand tools. They weren’t professional duty, but they were well-made hobby tools. They came in three versions: green was good, orange/red was better, and gold was best. For a couple of years, I got B&D stuff for every Christmas and birthday. Ah, the memories!”
Screws for Outdoor Work
Commenting on a question about screws for exterior furniture, Jim Huta wrote to suggest “You should try Spax outdoor flathead.”
Another from Down Under
After one Australian took umbrage at our character assessment of his ilk, we were delighted to hear an opposing viewpoint.”As an Australian-American of some 36 years standing, and a denizen of Tasmania, I took your remarks about Australians as intended; as a compliment. Far better to be “cocksure of themselves, a bit wacky, not afraid of experimentation” than to be run-of-the-mill. It’s the equivalent of the Yankee “can-do” attitude.
– Jack Pindell
Woodbridge, Tasmania, Australia
To which we say “Good on ya, mate.” – Editor
You Make Us Blush
We got an early Christmas present in the form of these kindly words from a long-time reader. “I’ve enjoyed Woodworker’s Journal since it was in the newsprint format, and still have many of the old issues. From time to time, I refer to them for inspiration, and the enjoyment of looking through them. Keep up the good work.”
– Chuck Arkon
We’ll certainly try, Chuck. – Editor