Things that go bump in the night…

Posted: September 14, 2010 in Antique trucks, Dogs, Hot Rod, Rat Rod, Vintage trucks

While getting the roadster cleaned up  to Nat’s North Friday morning, I heard what I thought was a car crashing in front of our house.  Kim and I both yelled to each other, “What WAS that?”.   She thought it’d come from the shop, and there was no car wrapped around a tree on our street, so I looked in the shop.

Sure enough, it WAS from the shop!   What had happened was the Diamond T had rolled off the jack stands.  I had the rear wheels off, axle on stands, and the front wheels were on the wheel stands (two disk blades with pipe between, tires set on them, about 14″ tall).  I’ve used these things for 30 years, very handy, and as they are dished, to roll off, the car has to roll uphill.   Which, evidently, can happen when a tire goes flat.  ( The left front tire has a slow leak. )

When I’d jacked up the back to pull the wheels, the truck was pulled back a little, so the front tires were no longer centered on the stands.  Tire went flat, pushing it back even further, and it rolled backwards and off.   The horrible crashing noise was the stainless grill halves sliding off the roof, down onto the cowl, bouncing off the engine, fenders and hitting the floor.   Nothing was damaged, aside from a small paint chip on the edge of the cowl when the grill hit it.  No big deal.

The scary thing is that I’ve been working under this on the rear fenders for two weeks with it setting like this.  Fortunately, I’d left the floor jack under the rear axle,  no weight on it but it was locked and up about an inch from the center.  The truck just rolled back, fell down onto the jack at the rear, and the front dropped the 14 or so inches down to the floor.  If the jack hadn’t been there, the truck would have fallen onto the rear hubs (the wheels were off), the fenders and running boards would have been crushed, lot’s of damage of handmade, one-off pieces.  It would have been a huge set back.  Even worse, I could have been under it when it happened.  Of course, it was on jack stands, the jack there too, but still, it would have been scary at the least.

In addition to that, our dog Frankie, a 12 year old English Cocker,  was apparently hit by a car on Thursday evening.  We’d let her out before bedtime, as usual, and she didn’t come right back to the door, not usual.  She’s very hard of hearing, but I went out and whistled and clapped (which she can hear) and after a few minutes heard rustling in the leaves at the end of the house.  Sure enough, it was her in the dark, but clearly something was very wrong.

We called our Vet (it was 1030 pm) and he met us at the clinic where we left her.  All of us thought she’d perhaps gotten into something and eaten a huge amount of something (the Vet thought she’d been poisoned), given her history of pancreatitis.  Lab results revealed no elevation of pancreatic enzymes, but very elevated liver enzymes, perhaps poisoning and acute liver failure,  but the next day (we left her) he discovered a laceration on the inside of left hind leg from ankle to abdomen.  She was shocky, low blood pressure, and didn’t bleed.  He surmised the shock was trauma, most likely from being struck by a car, and she came home, lame and sore, Saturday noon.

She’s still not herself, but getting better, spending her time in the guest room, her “comfort” zone where she has always gone when frightened by storms or not feeling well.  Thank goodness, we thought we’d lost her for a while there.  Again.

So, all’s well that ends well.  The best dog ever is on the mend, the truck is not ruined, I’m not squashed, and life is good!

  1. Brian Rowley says:

    Wow. Looks like a series of mishaps and you all came through in pretty good shape. Hate to hear about our fury friends getting hurt. I went through a scare last winter with Toby but everything seem to be a-ok now. $$$$.cc
    Make a better plan for keeping the Reo up and off your chest and it sounds like your good to go. Our safety programs at work tell us that there a number of near-misses for every “recordable”. Kind of like the cat with nine lives thought.. Let’s not use up any more “lives”

    • flynbrian48 says:

      Brian, You’ve got that right. Complacency is everywhere! Just when you think your little dog is human, they do something very dog-like (in this case, we think she was chasing the opposum which was dead at the end of the driveway when we left for the vet clinic) and remind you that they’re really dogs after all! Out on her leash in the evenings now, and tethered when outside unattended.

  2. wow…that’s a lot to be thankful for!

  3. Penny says:

    Oh, I hope your poor Frankie feels better soon. I assume that the vet ascertained that she isn’t bleeding internally?

    My sweet 15 year old dog was rescued, and too old for us (SPCA) to put her up for adoption. As I had groomed her for many years before her “Dad” died, and then she went through abuse with his heirs, I kept her, as she knew and trusted me. She is so loving and loved, so I know how we are attached to these senior dogs.

    I have a fenced yard, but I go out with her to make sure no one has thrown something nasty over the fence.

    I am so glad that you were not hurt, nor any property.

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