Washing machine drum firepit – ON FIRE!!

You’ll be relieved to read I am done with writing about my sex life, I don’t really have any further tales to share, and I guess readers are either bored with my WordPress or couldn’t give a monkeys about my love life, why would they? (Btw that’s not the reason for writing them).

Either way there’ll be no more stories of boobs and wet kitties.

You promised NO more posts Andrew!

Oh yes firepits!

Do you recall the saga that was converting my old washing machine drum into a firepit? That particular ‘How to post’ is here on my blog, anyways tonight I filmed the first fire burn and uploaded a 2 minute video onto YouTube. 😁

Ok not quite ON FIRE!! More trying the homemade firepit ignited.

Yes I filled my converted washing machine drum with pieces of wood and newspaper, waited until our Sun disappeared into a gloomy dusk because I am a responsible nextdoor neighbour, after all who wants their evening spoilt with smoke drifting across the resident’s gardens?

Alas as you can hear by the audio, I am unable to 🙄 narrate whilst holding a camera hence I tend to sound very strange, and as you all know men are incapable of multitasking? Incidentally I’m whispering so as my neighbours don’t think I’ve finally lost the plot!!

Shepherdson 2019


Washing machine Review & ‘firepit’ saga (pt3/5)

Two Post today! But first an Update and a Review.

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My new washing Machine

Amazing how the absence of a camera lens (above) distorts photos taken by a tablet, I think I’ll stick with my £8 Fuji eBay purchase in future.

For those readers unfamiliar with my unforeseen washing machine saga series, I began by intending to show you how to replace a rubber seal on my 19 year old Bosch, I changed the part but the appliance never worked again? And the reason why wasn’t even my fault………. read here if you need to but lol I wouldn’t bother 😀 .

So I’ve given up any dreams of becoming an electrical appliance maintenance engineer, and instead decided to upcycle/convert the old washing machine drum into a fire pit/garden incinerator or better still BBQ, and please do read that post here. (Helps for later)

However before I write a ‘How To’ guide for making a drum firepit (remember upcycling means taking a defunct product and converting it into something usable) I thought I’d share a brief review of my new machine pictured above ABSENT OF AN ACCOMPANING YOUTUBE VIDEO!

(As an aside, WordPress is a haven for expressing yourself through the written word, so perhaps I shouldn’t post tooo many of my own YouTube videos here? Not to worry my ‘Blog’ features less than 1% video media.)

Now to my first product review, by that I mean a buyers first thoughts.

Where was I? Oh yes my review of something purchased, one day I’ll learn the art of keeping my thought processes on track!

As I’ve written before my previous Bosch washing machine lasted 19years, my Hotpoint Refrigerator finally died 18years ago and I’m writing not a jot about my Hotpoint Freezer for fear of tempting fate!!! Have I been lucky? I guess so yes, but don’t get me started with regurgitating my kitchen oven rant or I’ll be still here 1000 words later still spitting feathers.

I’d guess the maxim ‘you get what you pay for’ applies to everything in life, a Bosch appliance isn’t the cheapest to purchase however as we’re informed they’re built in Germany a Country that builds quality engineered products, alas unlike mine own which appears to manufacture very little these days but that’s a WHOLE different BREXIT story.

Early days! I’ve only used my new Bosch Vario Perfect Serie 4 for a handful of washes, but all’s well and good and machine operates as instructed, not forgetting of course a Bosch comes with a 2 year manufacturers warranty as standard 🙂

Finger’s crossed, I very much doubt it’ll last another 19years but who knows?

Two very pleasant gentlemen from ‘John Lewis’ (upmarket UK store) both delivered and fitted it two weeks ago, and I hadn’t realised washing machines no longer require hot water feeds, no the only two pipes that need connection are the cold water inlet feed and a drain pipe taking the ‘dirty water’ away. They installed the appliance giving me brief operating instructions before leaving and advising I begin with a 4hour 90 degrees wash cycle, that sounds frigging expensive!

90 degrees Celsius for heavens sake! (Does anyone wash at 90 degrees? Discuss)

The accompanying guide manual is a little daunting reading to begin with, phrases like Speed Eco Water, Heavy soiling, Plus/Rinse Plus/Wash and the like, but then again don’t they say Washing machines are designed by men? Select a cycle by turning the control dial and there are ten cycles to choose from cottons delicates etc, each option displays the spin cycle speed, beginning to end time also temperature as a pre-set and I guess you choose your favourite then stick with it for many years to come? Btw I didn’t know this, but the faster the spin the more creases that are put into the garments err wow? I’ll get the hang of it, oh and there are additional settings for short eco washes pre soaks etc but a couple of hours at 40 degrees has suited me fine for this past 20years.

A major improvement compared to my old Bosch machine is the spin cycle is a whole lot quieter than before, and of course if you never overload the drum in weight then you’ll never experience vibration problems applies, yes my Bosch quietly spins itself into a 1400 purring cycle and as I’ve hinted at finger’s crossed no problems yet.

So does anyone actually concern themselves worrying about garment crease levels? Or do you throw in 2 detergent tablets, close the door and wash at 40 degrees for a couple of hours every single time?

A. Shepherdson 2019


Upcycling! My Washing Machine firepit (BBQ?)

I’m hoping this Googled image (above) gives you an idea of what a washing machine DRUM fire pit looks like, yes they can be used as BBQ’s 🙂 (garden incinerators?)

Below you see my very recent homemade video uploaded to my YouTube Channel…………. don’t get tooo excited I receive very few views on the site AND make no money) but hey making videos is much the same as WordPress……….. fun……… why not have a go?

(My apologies for whispering, Sunday morning and I didn’t want my neighbours to think I was going loopy talking to myself!!)

Upcycling – Upcycling, also known as creative reuse, is the process of transforming by-products, waste materials, useless, or unwanted products into new materials or products of better quality or for better environmental value.

So you are maybe aware of my ongoing washing machine saga no? Well to cut a short story even shorter, several weeks ago I had planned to share write a post with accompanying video on how to fix a broken washing machine blah blah blah lol, well it didn’t happen, I fixed the new part but the machine err never worked again!

Who knows what went wrong? Not to worry, my Bosch appliance was 19years old so I wasn’t about to pay £90 call out plus parts, and then it may never work again anyway?

So I decided instead to extract the stainless steel drum from within my washing machine and upcycle/transform into a wood burning fire pit, never heard of them? Well you’ll find tens of videos on YouTube, also they cost £25 on eBay so if you have a broken down machine why not make your very own for zero pounds/dollars……….. anyways my firepit project was a success…….. jeez extracting the drum was hardly rocket science and very easy to do!

Why not have a go yourselves, now you may be wondering how hard can this be? Well I’d guess the skill level is a medium, anyways why not read my following post where I’ll explain ‘how to’ and judge for yourselves, err when I’ve written it that is.

So to wrap up todays upcycling money saving post, my very own How to, Do it yourself, Step by step explanation will appear here sooon…….…..

A. Shepherdson 2019 

Use Vinegar! Costs less and it works

This post isn’t blogging advice per say but its dawned on me over this past 10 months, those people Reading my thoughts March 2018 won’t be the same as today, so if you haven’t already noticed Andrew’s WP is an eclectic jumble of personal anecdotes which I guess is the theme, jeeze I’d get so bored writing about just one topic hence the tag-line ‘Blogging Thoughts Photos and Life’……….. (another way of warning you I’ve written a true tale sharing the first occasion a ‘knicker-less’ lady sat on my face 😛 , though I should add I’ve enjoyed more pleasurable experiences in my lifetime!)

:/ A post I’ll save for another day.

This evening I have a household tip for you which I’d guess many male/lady Readers will already be aware of but hey the magical cleaning effects of Distilled Vinegar still astounds me……. ‘no s*** Sherlock’ these are seriously impressive results!

Several posts previous you may have watched my instructive YouTube Video where I show you How To change bathroom basin taps blah blah blah………… well just be aware I live in an area of the UK plagued by hard water, Oxfordshire, seriously Limescale is deposited into every appliance that heats water as a process of its purpose in life, kettles, washing machines, dishwashers, plumbing joints, Limescale f***s them one and all.

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Basin drain pipe BEFORE being dipped in Vinegar 😦
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Basin drain pipe AFTER being dipped in Vinegar 🙂 ……… I know it’s a frigging miracle!!

The very first time I tried this ‘Life Hack’ (isn’t that the term cool kids say on YouTube sharing easy tips for solving technology problems?) I was amazed, in fact so amazed I’ll show the ‘before and after pics’ side by side!

Hmm :/ I wonder why ‘Johnson and Johnson’ doesn’t share this £0.34 household cleaning tip with customers?

Without wishing to labour my incredulity tooo far, I’m absolutely amazed how a God awful looking Limescale’d component can look spectacular sparkling shiny and brand new after immersion, and better still I didn’t have to spend a fortune buying fancy plastic bottles (future landfill) full of corrosive chemicals that DON’T work ANYWAY? Furthermore Vinegar is completely safe to humans and metals though apparently being a mild acid it can redden human skin, so wear gloves (I didn’t he says wincing when a little entered a cut on my hand) but hey I’ve lived to tell the tale.

Wear rubber gloves!!

I should add my Grandmother pickled many a garden food stuff in Distilled Vinegar so I doubt a little on the hands will kill me, and better still this life hack requires zero elbow grease which if you are lazy like me is fabulous, so what’s not to like about cleaning components using a 34p bottle of Vinegar? What’s more the magical liquid is guaranteed to work (because chipping away with chisels doesn’t!) Btw if you are worried about plastic destroying aquatic environments you can still purchase Distilled Vinegar sold in glass bottles! 

Immerse in Vinegar, wait 10+ minutes then watch the Limescale just fall away, btw please comment if the information I’ve imparted is wrong suspect or hazardous, thank you.

©A. Shepherdson 2019.

MY new YouTube video: ‘How to fit a ………

….…………… my narration does improve! But as you’ll understand us guy’s are incapable at multitasking! Thinking and speaking whilst holding a camera lol ain’t so easy, it improves!

Jeeze I just had a thought!!! You know my previous Post, the sexy story with the warning NSFW, well don’t panic my new YouTube Video isn’t of an adult nature, NO definitely not, today’s 11 minute video displayed below instructs the viewer How To Fit New Taps onto their Bathroom Wash Basin, 

Btw narrated by me Andrew Shepherdson 🙂 .

Calling a Plumber can cost a fortune, so if you need to fit new bathroom Taps why not Do-It-Yourself, as for basic tools required a water pipe wrench and adjustable spanner should suffice. 

Regular Readers to my WordPress will almost certainly understand this ‘blog’ is eclectically themed, basically I write about ‘everything and anything’ that captures my imagination, the reason? Easy, variety excites my creative juices rather than blogging on one single theme, btw I should add I’m finished with writing sexy adult stories for the foreseeable future 🙂 , 😦 ‘Gemma’s Wet Kitty was perhaps a little tooo explicit for classy ladies with sensitive dispositions.

Please comment with questions or if you’d like to read a ‘How To Guide’, a written descriptive Post with photographs which could perhaps compliment the video.

©A. Shepherdson 2019

YouTube’s ‘How To fix something yourself’ videos are fabulous

Watching YouTube videos is great fun if you have time to waste spare, but amongst the skateboarding border collie videos, or women taking part in braless wet tee shirt competitions! Would you like to see videos of wet tee shirt competitions? No? Ok no. 😁

(Each to their own lol)

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But sift through all the YouTube silliness and you will discover ‘How to’ videos both filmed and starring men and women showing/instructing/demonstrating to the viewer ‘How To’ fix something anything! Several years ago I installed a complete new bathroom suite and virtually learnt to tile walls by watching YouTube videos uploaded by enthusiastic amateurs, and yes they knew what they were doing and had the digital footage to help.

Now cutting a short story even shorter, I’ve filmed several ‘How to’ videos such as ‘How to cast concrete’ and to answer your next question ‘why do people do this?’ The reason why is as simple as passing on tips and ideas whether cooking, gardening or installing a kitchen sink. I’ve filmed several because they’re fun, lol I have a frustrated TV presenting ego but most importantly I’d love to think I’ve saved someone their hard earned money by having a try themselves………….. after all finding a Tradesmen, finding a Tradesman who will do a good job and won’t charge you a fee you’ll need a small bank loan to pay for, are all bloody nightmares. 

(Ok if you have a young family then I DO understand spare time is non existent.)

Jeez I watch those Tradesmen cowboys on the telly, thick unskilled highwaymen who’ll rip off innocent pensioners out of their savings……….. AND do a botched job!


Many years ago my Central Heating Pump stopped working, *****d it was, I remember opening the airing cupboard door gazing at the pump beside the copper water tank and thinking tooo myself, shall I fix it myself or call a Gas Fitter? Yep I opened my copy of Yellow Pages, took a punt on a guy I’d never heard of before, and yes he installed a new pump and yes my credit card took a hammering! He did a good job but overcharged me for the parts (after comparing his invoice to internet prices) and his frigging labour charges were astronomical (all Tradesmen are astronomical), so from that point on I promised myself to find and watch self-made YouTube videos and within reason have a go myself.

Now ok I’m an engineer by trade but still to this day I get a little nervous taking something apart myself and all I can advise is confidence is key. So here’s two observations, I’d say if you are both intelligent and practical then simple DIY isn’t rocket science, be methodical take your time, do your research and most importantly you’ll save money so why not have a go at fixing that wonky door?…..… Ok if the project involve electrics then DO NOT attempt it yourself EVER, get an electrician in who’ll do a safe and secure job, however I’d say most other ‘small’ projects are doable.

Hmm so now I am asking myself have I just explained in four paragraphs information you already know? After all that’s why people spend their Sundays wandering around DIY shops looking for paint wood nails and tools! Not to worry, the point to tonight’s post is ‘How To change a Washing Machine Door Seal’, this is the introduction the instructional post and accompanying video for my little YouTube Channel will follow sooon. 

Looking at the picture below my reason for fitting a new seal is simple for all to see, mildew mould! As you know if you allow cold water to settle on a surface give it time and mildew grows, whether that be window seals or bathroom tile grouting, mould is unhealthy unsightly and impossible to remove and my washing machine is a case in point. Just recently several black marks have appeared on freshly washed clothes and I have an idea where they came from!

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My Washing Machine Door Seal after removing photographed 15/12/2018

A ‘How To’ post follows sooon………….. 

©A. Shepherdson 2018

Casting ‘objects’ from concrete will…….

…………. SAVE you money! Oh yes it will and better still making concrete is easy. (Because I lay naked in my garden this post concerns the screen I made to stop people looking at my ass!)

Okay regular readers to this blog will already know the posts are varied, the themes eclectic well even for me today’s post ‘casting things from concrete’ is a little surreal and out there, but I thought someone may be interested and yes making your own ‘objects’ can save you money………… in fact what you can make is ONLY limited by the size of your imagination.

However if you live in a large Metropolitan City apartment complex such New York, err then you may have space issues?

A question! How much would you pay for a bird bath to go in the garden, a bath such as in the photos below? £30? Why not concrete cast your own for £2! What you’ll require is an old frying pan without handle, and an old washing up bowl. Place an open face down frying inside a washing up bowl, make sure it’s positioned in the middle and fill the washing up bowl with concrete, allow to set for 36 hours (no more), prize out the pan lid (carefully), invert the bowl and hey presto the bath should come out………………. and a the mould should always be made from wood or plastic but a frying pan should come out easy………….. read on!

A tip for you, wrap a sheet of kitchen cling film on the inside of the pan surface, and after setting the frying pan WILL come out easy leaving a fantastic finish. (Cling film will help with whatever you make 🙂 )

Or how about these concrete ‘stones’ cast with a hole in so you can insert screen poles, thereby keeping them upright, and note in the photos below I couldn’t push the screen’s poles into the ground anyway!! Why? Because the 5 concrete ‘stones’ are resting on loose rocks.

So I ask you, if you purchased 5 ‘stones with holes’ to support your rear garden screen, keep it upright and weighty enough to stop the wind blowing over, how much would you pay for 5? £60 or perhaps more!

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Below are more photos of the supporting stones manufactured by myself but this time in close up!

…………. and now for several additional photos of my screen and note I know one pole looks as if it’s leaning and that’s because I haven’t cast the concrete ‘stone/stand/weight’ as of right now! Call the screen a work in progress.

And if you’ve been following my Blog posts recently then you’ll have worked out why a garden screen is required, I sunbathe naked (there is a post) and I’d rather not have people walking past looking at me through the gaps in my fence! 😀 I don’t mind but you know, children walk past so one has to be careful.

I hope this post is useful to someone reading because yes,

Read More »

My gardening (mini) Project!

Something a little different for you this lunch time, remember my Blog posts are eclectic and whatever captures my imagination at the time, they could be adult themed then again they might not be…………….. lol all very Forest Gump and boxes of chocolates!

One or two people who Follow and Read my WordPress will know throughout the summer months I grow Raspberries in my rear Garden, just so as you know I live in the United Kingdom, the Cotswolds to be 😉 more exact.

This year’s fruit crop is in the midst of flowering with bee buzzing bees transferring pollen between plants and to show the fruit I hope to be picking below are 2 photographs showing last years crop, taken in late August………. jeeze where does the time go? Scary, only seems like last week I was picking and eating them………… and remember they’re 2017 pictures. 

The variety I planted way back 2015 were late summer fruiting, you can buy early season canes but I didn’t have much success with those, no idea why? Anyways several weeks after taking the above photos my Town was hit by an Electric thunderstorm, a truly spectacular evening (clears the air stops me watching my neighbour Helen undressing down to her bra and……… 😉 ) all very impressive, but the wind rather damaged my Raspberry canes however not to worry I’d eaten plenty of bowlfuls that summer…………… warm cream and cold Raspberries yum yum! 😀

So being at a loose end Sunday afternoon I constructed a frame, not bodged mind I’m an engineer by Trade and all without plans or sketches. No I raided my Garage of timber, measured marked and cut lengths to a line then screwed together gluing the 45 degree corner braces, just to give the frame extra strength when the gales hit which they surely will!

Then I screwed the rear of the frame to my neighbours garden fence, but he’ll be fine because he’s a lovely guy and a great neighbour, then finally to finish my mini construction project completed I painted the frame and began to stretch garden string between the A frames. That should help to stop the wind snapping my Raspberries in half!…………….. Note looking at my photos below the twining is unfinished.

Why the need for A frames? Hmm I may add a couple of hanging baskets with Strawberry plants inside, we’ll see! 

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Btw 🙂 I’m not showing off you may glean an idea or two from my very easily made, functional, minimalist garden frame that may help plants in high winds, oh and with easy access to the front for picking fruit……… and there’s plenty of scope for………… well whatever takes my fancy! 

©A. Shepherdson 2018