Sunday, July 24, 2016

Word of the Week: Patience

Week 7 was spent with maintenance, fixing machines and boats that still needed to be finished. If you remember back to my first week in maintenance I was working on the hull of a boat repairing holes in it. I got to work on the same boat again only this time it was a little easier. All I had to do was wire up a new radio. At the time I thought this was a difficult task because it took me an entire day to hook everything up and test if the radio was working but I had no idea what was my future with maintenance was.

Day 1 of Track Fixing
  The boat radio took place on Monday and when I went to work on Tuesday I had no clue what was about to happen. We were borrowing a Caterpillar 257B which is very similar to a Bobcat, and the machine had tracks so that it would move across the sand easier. Our problem was that the drive wheels for the tracks had bearings that had locked up and it had taken them two weeks to get the parts and get the old track and drive wheels off. My task along with two other maintenance employees was to put the new tracks on and change the drive wheels and bearings. The machine didn’t want to do anything easily for us, everything that needed to be changed had to be fought with and caused us to think for hours about how to defeat this machine. We had to pick the machine up by the track with 2-ton chain hoists so that we could fit everything where it needed to be. Then once that happened bolting everything in was difficult. To hook up the tensioner we had to push down on it with a fork lift, then use a ratchet strap to get it into position finally. The machine tested all of our patience and forced us to work together as a group to fix it.

View From Wheelhouse of the Barge
Luckily for us we had finished the machine by Friday and all we had to do then was load it onto the barge and take it over to the island. After taking the barge over to the island we then had to drive our fixed machine over to our work site. we were thrilled when everything went on without any problems and it was the first official test of our repairs. The heat and humidity caused us to get called back early allowing for a nice calm ride back on the barge. 
Week 8 is going to be with resource management. 

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