Home Factory



Ricardo-Bofill-cement-factory-yatzer-2.jpg Ricardo is an architect who lives and works at home. Home is a former cement factory.


Melbourne Design Week 2018 is underway and us RUDE Guys were relating to this article featured in The Age newspaper’s M insert last weekend.  All the individual stories were of interest to us, as they involved the reuse of stuff, by designers. 

Us RUDE Guys are not designing for sale and profit however we reuse and repair, and occasionally we will reinvent and revamp our secondhand finds.  Whilst flashy upcycling is not our aesthetic, we can definitely appreciate what’s involved.  And that’s why we enjoyed reading the article and finding out more about the designers, and what’s on during Melbourne Design Week.

And from the article these were the paragraphs [refer below in orange italics] that made an impression.  Why?  Because we agree with Dale Hardiman Designer that this is how we could be living in our homes. 

[“Only a handsaw, drill and screws are used for construction,” he explains. “I took away any machining and CAD. None of the work was sketched. It’s about the intuitiveness of making. I use rudimentary tools to display the ease with which we can reuse these objects to have structural capabilities.”

Hardiman hopes to inspire others to get on the tools. In his eyes our homes are veritable mini-factories capable of local production.

“Furniture manufacture requires buying hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of machinery to [mass] produce objects,” he says. “[But] the average household is like a workshop; with gas and electric ovens.”]

The RUDE Home is a very private place.  Daily, we share an incredible amount on-line, that’s why we prefer to keep our home space private.  Sometimes we feel like we lead authentic double lives.  We like to meet people out in public because it gets us out and about and also keeps us socially connected.  We travel once or twice a month as Mend It, Australia and visit repair cafes and similar events. 

For us, our house [the building] is like a makerspace, large shed or garage – a thriving workshop for repair and maintenance jobs that are never ending, in our mission to keep things out of landfill, and money in our pockets.

It is not unthinkable for us to be pulling apart a chainsaw on our antique wooden dining room table.  Or sewing in the main bedroom that’s now a studio.  Or fixing a sewing machine on our kitchen’s bench.  Or cutting out fabric for curtains in the entrance hall or on the kitchen floor.

Beat The Man, hire out your own space for free, and be industrious from home!!


Image via www. Waste-into-Wonder



Tinkering Tenacity



Image Source:  www


“Tinkering, however, is not just the art of repairing what is broken. At its heart, it is a playful activity, tinged with a measure of risk, but absent any great consequences.”

Freddie Luchterhand-Dare ~ Senior Strategist at Landor

A Rude Record early February blog post opportunity. 

Our tinkering tenacity at Rude Record and Mend It, Australia has grown stronger as a result of meddling bureaucrats enforcing restrictions on our rights to participate in our local community. i.e.  if you don’t become a formal volunteer [under our control] you will not be permitted to play with the others. 

We find it troubling that many of the bureaucrats making decisions for our local communities do NOT actually live or play in them. We chuckle at the thought of a bureaucrat asking us to fix something for them.   They would not dare!

Refer to the link at the end of this blog post.  This may happen to be the best article on tinkering that we come across for 2018.  Time will tell.  Us RUDE Guys just had to share it, because it’s very well written and covers some interesting points, related to repairability in the digital age.

From the article as follows, and us RUDE Guys could not agree more:

“But it seems the long-silenced tinkerers are finding their voice again. A series of ‘protest’ movements are gathering pace globally, pushing back against this notion of ‘obsolescence by repair prevention.’ Far from niche, their call has increasing gravity. A loose army of consumer advocates, repairers and ordinary individuals – in other words, owners of all kinds of devices, from microwaves to toys – are now coalescing. “

“Of course, the complexity of some appliances (think a photocopier) has always been beyond the skills of the average spanner-wielding person.”

RUDE Boy had never fixed photocopiers in his life.  Decades ago, he took a job troubleshooting, servicing and repairing them for a year, saving the day for many frazzled office workers.  Oh, and he can wield a mean spanner too, and does not take kindly to bureaucrats, who haven’t got a clue about tinkering, telling him what he can and can’t do.

Beat The Man and keep developing your tenacity for tinkering. 



Mend It, Australia


Social media is changing the way we communicate and the way we are perceived, both positively and negatively. Every time you post a photo, or update your status, you are contributing to your own digital footprint and personal brand.  Amy Jo Martin


Brand is not a product, that’s for sure; it’s not one item. It’s an idea, it’s a theory, it’s a meaning, it’s how you carry yourself. It’s aspirational, it’s inspirational.  Kevin Plank

Us RUDE Guys have added a new concept to our brand that piggy backs off the ethos of Rude Record.  Mend It, Australia launches itself out in the community on the 10th February when we tinker travel, over an hour away from home, to volunteer at the Geelong Repair Cafe – Highton.

Our RUDE and Mend It branding reflects reducing consumption, reuse of available resources and the right to repair without interference.  Locally at Imagine Melton Zero Waste, we promote resource recovery and say no to landfill, preferring to champion alternatives, such as zero waste measures, like composting.

At Mend It, Australia Facebook page we showcase Australian and global mending, fixing and repairing events.  We post interest articles and videos about the mission to mend movement.  And most days, we also like to shout out about what we are reusing and repairing.  We hope our posts inspire our page followers to think twice before chucking things out and heading off to the mall to buy new.

As for this blog, RUDE Girl was writing a weekly blog post, however it looks like I will only be able to manage monthly/bimonthly this year, as we will be busy trekking around the countryside, participating in Repair Cafe events.

RUDE Boy has worked part-time for many years, as he is transitioning to retirement.  He has just told me he plans to fully retire this year in October [it’s not common knowledge yet, but who reads what I write anyways!]

We have been making some plans for this milestone forever really.  However, we started to focus more on it last year.  In 2017 we were involved in mending at Mend It, Melton [MIM] events in our local community but MIM did not work out for us.  Bureaucracy decided to take over and its reason for doing so failed to align with our Rude Record brand.   There are no more Mend It, Melton events in our local community, however I  still administrate the Facebook page here

Thanks to the bureaucratic meddling of Mend It, Melton, us RUDE Guys turned a rotten situation into a positive and voila, Mend It, Australia was created.  And our idea around flexible tinkering travel was born.

Stay posted for some stories back from our tinkering travels by following us daily on Rude Record or Mend It, Australia.




“Australians are extremely risk averse.”  David Gianotten / Architect at OMA

It is becoming more and more apparent to us RUDE Guys that many Australians are loosing their larrikanism, and becoming very schoolmarmish in behaviour.  Aussie bureaucrats are top of the class when it comes to accepting the status quo and not wanting to take risks.

In today’s The Age playful parents prevent anxiety in kids because they are encouraged to take risks safely.  A good reason for repeated exposure to things that might feel unsafe, like tinkering.



Image: www

Unfortunately, what this type of behaviour leads to, is lack of innovation.  If you do not want to risk take, you can only draw on things that have been tested.

Therefore, the quote above by Mr Gianotten, is pretty spot on as far as we are concerned.  However, it does not relate to us RUDE Guys, as we pride ourselves on being calculated risk takers, especially when it comes to our tinkering.

Below is our last You Tube video for 2017 and our Happy New Year well wishes.

This video is about having fun in the shed and tinkering the day away, however it’s also about safe risk when tinkering with machinery and electricity.  If you are competent you do not need a licence to tinker!!

Beat The Man and keep bloody bureaucrats where they belong ~ away from us innovative folk, and our kids too.


Tinkering Travellers


It probably comes as no surprise that RUDE Girl read Katherine Wilson’s book in a day.  What would have taken Katherine a couple of years, if not more to research and write, I was able to enjoy the fruits of her labour in less than eight hours.  It was an easy read for me because tinkering and tailoring are my passion.  And everything that was written, was pretty much what us RUDE Guys experience and more.  It was wonderful to have all the theory on tinkering [and there had not been that much, until now] in one place.

Katherine Wilson follows us on Facebook at Rude Record, and it was bittersweet when she commented that she wished she had met us, before she had written her book.  We will be here for her, when she returns to write the sequel, featuring a different lot of tinkerers.

This year we reached out into the community to share our tinkering skills.  In July our participation was ended by bureaucrats.  Yes, The Man was telling us we had to officially sign up as formal volunteers, in order to be able to tinker in a grassroots community program of our creating.

Of course, that was never going to happen.  And we recently found validation for our big fat NO WAY in the most unlikely of places.  In the book Jesus for President, its author Shane Claiborne writes,

“Jesus calls us to be peculiar but also engaged in the world we find ourselves in.  We are to be relevant nonconformists.  We are to develop countercultural habits and norms and live them in the midst of an insane world.”


The above quote from Jesus for President, inspired us to post this video below.  Some how we think that Jesus would approve of our radical stance, against our over governed and risk avoiding society, that’s now under the control of the insurance industry.

Organisations in our local area are in crisis mode after a cluster of avoidable baby deaths at the local State funded maternity hospital.  It appears to us, that since this tragedy, they are in a scramble to mitigate risk and are going overboard. 

The world has gone insane because governments, multinationals, insurance companies and local organisations are colluding to condition the masses, in an attempt to make them believe that they [the masses] will be protected and better off.   We are not buying it and in our opinion, it’s all about control of the masses, and making profits for the multinationals etc.

And when a local church run facility costs $40 per hour to hire a room, for our FREE three hour community mending event, you really are left questioning where are we heading as a society.

We were reading last night how Australian liberalism is at threat and we could not agree more with Peter Greste as follows:

“Australia likes to think of itself as a larrikan country, that country that calls a spade a f…ing shovel; straight talking, no bullshit kind of country that had maintained that sort of frontier spirit…..it feels like we’ve become incredibly bound up by rules and regulations….”

On page 250 of Tinkering: Australians Reinvent DIY Culture, it highlights that Keal, a state police prosecutor and recent migrant from the UK expressed contempt for Australia’s ‘risk avoiding over governed society’ , where Katherine Wilson, the book’s author wrote that Keal’s comments suggested a beating-of-the-system pride that characterised all the tinkerers interviewed for her book.

Or in Rude Record‘s words Beat The Man!!  Us RUDE Guys are committed tinkerers and we will continue to share what we do from our home [not totally controlled by Big Brother…. yet] via social media.

We have cars and will travel to spaces and places that promote and encourage us to connect and engage with our community, as Jesus did, hence the birth of Mend It, Australia – The Travelling Tinkerers.  We refuse to sign away our right to repair without interference, to large agencies or governments.

“Beat The Man and tinker travel.  The road is where you are free to help others and not become a slave to an unjust system, based on control and a lack of humanity.”



Mend or End?



Image Source: www



RUDE Boy’s STIHL MS250 (42.5mm) chainsaw

Us RUDE [reusers (and repairers) of unloved discarded excess] Guys take great pride in maintaining our things.  We are not materialistic but we are true materialists.  We cherish, respect and care for the things that serve us well.

The STIHL chainsaw in the above photo was bought new by us about eight or nine years ago.   It has rarely been used and only for domestic use.  RUDE Boy was told and researched that STILH was the best for chainsaws.

Hell, this chainsaw was one of the few things we purchased new and it’s stuffed.  CACTUS!  Reinforces why we are not fans of spending big dollars on things that are manufactured to fail.  Yes, STIHL chainsaws are the best for planned obsolescence!  And yes, we will make sure we share our misfortune in an effort to warn others.

RUDE Boy took the chainsaw in for a service when it stopped working,  He was mortified when he was told the piston and bore had been scored and there was no compression.  He was then told it would cost over $AUD1,000 to repair it with STIHL parts.  Or $AUD670 with after market [generic] parts.

As in this article here [recommended reading], we were faced with the question of mend it or end it.  As we are the  Mend It, Australia team, we feel compelled to try and mend it, and share the experience on our Facebook page.

RUDE Boy has researched and ordered a motor from China for $AUD50.  He is reasonably confident he can replace the old motor with a new motor.  And hopefully, cross fingers and toes, this cheap part will make our hacked STIHL chainsaw serviceable again.

$AUD50 compared to $AUD1000 for repair is a huge difference.  We will try mending before ending.  It’s too early yet to say Beat The Man.  Stay posted.

Oh, and if we have to end it, because it does not work, we have been advised that ALDI sell a good domestic chainsaw for $AUD100.

House of Straw

Image Source: www

Image Source:  www

Us RUDE Guys do not live in an eco-designed house.  It is an early 1970s glorified tent!  It has some features that are sort of ‘green’ like roofing insulation and energy efficient globes in our light fittings.  Some rooms have curtains that are lined, and we have outside awnings on the windows.

We do however strive to reduce our carbon footprint in other ways.  We reduce, reuse and repair.  We rarely travel preferring stay at home mending and making do.  We are wary of expensive products that are labelled/certified ‘green’, refusing to be green washed by The Man.

What we do admire is others who owner-build with sustainability in mind.  And we would not rule out buying an already built eco-house on a small parcel of land in some sleepy seaside town.  Time will tell when RUDE Boy retires later in 2018.

On the topic of sustainable housing, National Sustainable House Day 2017 is fast approaching.  We just had to share with you Peter and Natasha Miles’ straw bale house in Merrimu, Victoria just up the highway from where we live.

A few years back, we spent an informative hour with this lovely couple .  Us RUDE Guys went to their property to collect some items they had generously listed on Freecycle.  They invited us into their home after we expressed a great interest in their building method.  At the time RUDE Girl had just completed a carpentry course and my eyes were wide open to future possibilities.

We would highly recommend that if you are looking to visit a sustainable house on September 17th take a drive to Merrimu and visit the Mills.  We know for a fact that they will make you feel most welcome.  Refer newspaper cutting below.

Oh, and what did they generously offer on Freecycle that we collected from them.  A digital camera that we used until were handed up mobile phones with cameras.  A computer hard drive that is still operating in RUDE Boy”s desk top computer.  And a lovely electric throw rug that was used many a time, and one such time was when RUDE Girl was very ill and suffering from shock.


Straw Bale House Merrimu Aug 2017

Straw Bale House ~ Merrimu.  Image Source: http://www.starweekly.com.au/pub/melton_moorabool/