Sunday, 12 July 2020

Invent and make, or buy........

Yesterday I was rooting around in my boxes of bits and bobs, tools, screws, and metal bits, things that might come in handy for something. I need a longer arm when I am walking around making a video, because holding the camera in my hand does not keep it steady. It's hard to concentrate on the camera when I need to look at my feet. So what's the solution, a longer arm.
 
I suppose I could buy something that is made for the job, but you know me, I try and make things with what I have already got. After about an hour or so, fiddling around with screws, trying to find one which fits the tripod hole at the bottom of the camera. I eventually found one, now what? What can I use for an arm, and how can I fix it to the screw which fits the camera. 
Throughout this process I thought what the heck am I doing, it is now two hours since I have been messing around with this. Should I give up and take the easy way out and just buy the extension that I need. I stuck with it, hands now filthy with all the searching through mucky junk. Frustrations building up, I know what I need but I can't find one. Let's try this, or, maybe that will fit. 
Eventually I cracked it. A wooden coat hanger, a hole drilled into the end of it, a piece of metal from a door bolt, a piece of rubber, and two screws. 


Not perfect because I can only point the camera forward. Carrying a coat hanger with me is not very convenient, the extensions made for the job are telescopic and collapsible. Well I'll give it a try and see if it makes any difference to my shaky videos.
Throughout this I wondered at what stage do I give up. Is it worth the effort. Why not look through a catalogue and buy one? But where is the fun in that. If we gave up on every problem we have and threw money at it to resolve it, then that creates a need to earn more money. By choosing what we spend our money on means we can create opportunities to be inventive, with the added bonus that it exercises our brains. By giving in and buying and not trying to solve our own problems, we become robots. 
I know this is in contradiction to my recent post about spending money at Go Outdoors, but I cannot make a decent waterproof jacket and trousers, and I definitely can't make a pair of boots which will last three years or more. So, the message is, invent and make when you can, buy second hand if you can, but buy new only when you can afford it. 
Time for breakfast on this sunny Sunday morning. Toodle pip.  ilona

24 comments:

  1. We were always brought up with the old adage " waste not, want not", well done Ilona!

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  2. Hi Ilona, there are several things you could have bought to do the job, but well done to you for reclycling/reusing things you already have.
    I know you are thrifty so you can spend money on the things that are important to you, such as caring for your pets, your holidays, go walking outwear etc.
    I have lapsed a bit on the frugal ways, because I have had a few very traumatic months, but I have goals and I want to have more days out and holidays and enjoy more family time so back to hard work and thrifty ways for me to achieve my goals, I have always followed you, you are an inspiration to us all. xx

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    1. Never mind. Pick yourself up and get back on the frugal bandwagon.

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  3. It will do the job fine I am not very but I do try as I cannot afford to buy new stuff only if I cannot find a way.

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  4. Well done!.As I was reading,for a moment I thought that you was going to tell us that you gave up and went and bought one....I should know by now that Ilona doesnt give up,lol.You really do have some great ideas and are so creative!!xx

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  5. Hi, a great idea, would an old fashioned fold up wooden ruler be the answer? sturdy but portable? Jo

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    1. It might do, but rulers aren't vey thick to screw into.

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    2. Could you glue a small block of wood to the end of the ruler?

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    3. I haven't got a wooden ruler, and a plastic one wouldn't be any good.

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    4. not being DIY savvy myself so a good point, there are probably lots of ideas on google for selfie sticks, can't wait to see what you come up with!

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  6. Brilliant! You may come across something that will make a telescopic arm in the future, but that is a job well done

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    1. Do you know, it was only recently that I threw away the main part of a telescopic umbrella.

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    2. Bet you are kicking yourself over throwing that away

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  7. That is genius!
    So fun to see.
    It would be a LOT more futzing, but have you considered making the arm collapsible/foldable, to make it easier to carry with you? (There'd be another afternoon gone, making that happen...)

    You encouraged me to look up extension arms for phones--I could use one. They aren't expensive (some are under $20), but I like yours better!

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    1. That's an idea, I need a hinge. I'll see if I have one in my bit box.

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  8. I love to make things and use a bit of serendipity. Got it from my Dad who used to call it mackling. He would say 'I can mackle it up. This meant using bits and bobs to mend things without spending money !!

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  9. You are full of inspiration and good advice,Ilona.

    Just watched the video of the caravan "musical breakfast" . So funny and nice to have a giggle at the end of this lovely day.
    Thank you. Susan xx

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  10. That is fantastic. I have always really enjoyed improvising rather than buying yet more 'stuff'. It's not just about saving money for me; I really enjoy the challenge and the pride I feel when I succeed in making something that fits the bill. It doesn't have to be all singing, all dancing. It just needs to do the job. I would encourage everyone to have a go at improvising. The worst that can happen is that it doesn't work and you have to purchase the item.

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  11. It is an admirable philosophy in a throwaway world MQ. I trust there were no foul-mouthed expletives as you were scrabbling around trying to find the bits and pieces you required!

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    1. I am in the habit of muttering an odd f and s and b word when things are not going right. Good job there is no one around.

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  12. Well done Ilona! My Mum used to say "you can only spend your money once" so what you save on your camera arm you will be able to spend on something else you will enjoy more. I hope the new "coathanger arm" works for you.

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  13. Make do and mend has never gone out of fashion. Yes, it's easy to just buy something, but if you can make it yourself, it gives you a great feeling. But it's always the way, you get rid of something, then not long after, realise it was just what you needed. Ho hum! xx

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  14. i am the same with anything to do with house furnishings......duvets, curtains, tea towels, dusters, etc......all recycled from odd bits of fabric!

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