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.


The Purple Stitch


To be radical is to grasp things by the root.

— Karl Marx

This past week has been busy.  Not frantic busy, just full on.  Us RUDE Guys are staying away from the mall, and Christmas parties are few and far between these days.  However, it still is a busy time of year, when you start to wrap [excuse the pun] things up.

RUDE Girl spoke on local radio at 979FM about Rude Record and Mend It, Melton.  Part 1 of the interview is on our Facebook page @ruderepair.  Part 2 of the interview is to follow shortly.

It seems like it has taken forever to get the launch of Mend it, Melton up and happening.  Earlier in the year, us RUDE Guys had been briefly involved with the launch of the first Repair Cafe for MelbourneThe folks of Melbourne’s inner west, are wonderful, however we had to venture out of our town, to attend repair events.  And we also were keen to create and establish an Aussie back-to-basics, no bulls**t  grassroots ‘in ya backyard kinda’ model.

When the opportunity came up, we cautiously accepted the challenge.  Why?  Melbourne’s western fringe dwellers have very set ideas on how things should look when rolled out.

A steering group was formed by Linking Melton South and it met to discuss possibilities.  It was unanimously decided that our town, would establish its own unique model and use the word mend.  Hence the title Mend It, Melton ~ Fix it, Don’t Flick It.

[Thank you to my Facebook friend and grammar cop Glynis, for the instruction to add the comma between the two words, It and Melton.  It was accepted by the group]

The above flyer by Ben, is advertising the launch in a week’s time.  The logo’s graphic depicts a mechanical cog/wheel and sewing stitches, but these also represent the train and track of the event’s railway location.  The colour green is for nature and keeps environmental issues around waste in the limelight.  Us RUDE Guys requested a single purple stitch be included.  It depicts the radical ‘right to repair’.

Mend It, Melton for us RUDE Guys, has been inspired by those make do and mend generations that went before us, our own personal hands-on trades’ backgrounds, and an unflinching ‘right to repair’ and Beat The Man attitude.  We feel it’s time to share our skills and abilities within our local community.

It is hoped that Mend It, Melton will invite some interest in our local community.  We know it will start slow.  And of course the train station location, whilst ideal for a launch, will have it’s limitations. Why?  There is a small shipping container on site with minimal room for fixers and their stuff.

Time will tell……and if Mend it, Melton does not work out for us, we will still be RUDE Guys, reusing and repairing at home and on-line.  Oh, and there is always that community that awaits our full retirement…..keep watching this blog!


The Shopping Container at Melton Railway Station.  Image via Linking Melton South


The Little Library at Melton Train Station.  Image via Linking Melton South


Mend It, Melton Launch – It’s Official!  Image via Linking Melton South

Grasp things by the root, that’s the grassroots and Beat The Man!!

The inspiration for this blog post came from Reece Harley


Like Reece Harley, RUDE Girl loves street art.  This was circa 2003 in Port Melbourne.  It was the last time I bought new clothes and shoes.  I only recently discarded the Just Jeans brand jeans.

Blog Day & Pizza Nite


RUDE has been busy converting old VHS tapes to a digital format.  This has to be undertaken in real time.  It takes many hours and a lot of patience to listen to my deceased father, God rest is soul, talk non-stop for 40 hours!

Seriously, I am very glad he recorded never seen before footage of the family.  And in the following months, I am going to be editing this footage into short digital stories.  I am planning to share my digital recreations with family in the form of ‘experience’ gifts for their birthdays and Christmas.

Anyways, whilst we have been going back to the 80’s and 90’s playing videos, RUDE Boy mentioned that I needed a new longer lasting battery, for my video camera.  It was purchased off Ebay and has been wonderful but the small battery is inefficient.

The new battery cost $70 [including postage and handling].  Yes, we actually bought something new!

According to the advice, it was best for this new battery, to be flattened twice before use.  We could have just let the video camera run and not engage.  However, I was never going to ignore the camera.  The opportunity was there do actually make recordings of something not nothing.  And I did.  There is about 60 minutes of us hamming it up, with no intention of sharing it.

Of course, RUDE Girl loves nothing better than to share, and I thought some five minute video vignettes, would serve as an anthropological study on how people [us] in the 21st century interacted with each other over pizza.  Well, maybe not so much that but what a noble reason, hey!

I thought back to my Dad’s old videos, and what parts took my attention.  It was the footage of family interacting over a meal, talking about nothing much at all.  For me those moments in time, were heaps more meaningful to us, than Paris at night or the Palace of Versailles.

Below is a five minute video of a chat we had over pizza whilst running the battery flat.  This is part 2 and there could be more parts to come for posterity.

Beat the Man and make your own healthy and cheap in-house pizza!  And dare to dance afterwards, to work off the calories.


Pizza Nite Invite



A RUDE Pepperoni and Mushroom Pizza


Pizza makes me think that anything is possible.  Henry Rollins

I will always eat pizza! Always. Dylan Penn

Tomorrow is Friday in the RUDE household.  That means blog day and pizza night.

Part 2 of the above video, with us chatting about nothing much at all, while we flatten our video camera’s new battery, will feature on tomorrow’s Friday blog post.

Come and join us for homemade pizza, a drink and a ‘nothing much at all’ insight into Friday nights at the RUDE dining table, in Melton, Melbourne, Australia.

And the irony is, RUDE Guys eat our homemade pizza at the dining table with candlelight, on wooden boards and we use cutlery!  Not very rude, right?

Beat The Man and make your own pizza at home!!


Relish for Repair


via ifixit

There is one advantage to having nothing, it never needs repair.

RUDE have been continuing on with our de-cluttering.  We have undertaken the bulk of it.  RUDE Boy reckons we have easily taken a tonne of stuff to the local charity shops.  As time and energy permits we are now in the process of fine tuning storage of that stuff which remains.  And we still have to go through the photos and personal papers.  And the small storage shed in the backyard.

We feel lighter and more in control.  And are able to think about new projects for 2016. I made a decision to say cheerio to some unfinished projects from 2015.

Photos below: RUDE Girl’s first ever attempt at weaving.  I made up a cardboard loom and weaved this piece.  I decided that the loom was taking up too much room in my studio.  I took the fabric off the loom.  And I am going to make a small lined purse with a zipper.

Years ago RUDE attempted to get a Repair Cafe off and running in our town in the outer west of Melbourne.  The interest was just not there.   Then we lost interest due to the apathy.  We are not procrastinating types.  And we believe there was no point flogging a dead horse = life’s too short.

In 2016, and all going well we hope to volunteer some of our time and skills to the very first Repair Cafe in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.  If we cannot have a Repair Cafe in our own suburb we will go to where one is happening.  Stick it to The Man, yey! 

Here is an article about the initiative and launch as follows:

The launch of Melbourne (Inner West) Repair Cafe will be on Sunday, 21st of February, 2016 from 11am to 3pm, in the Yarraville Gardens, Yarraville as part of its Living Future Festival during Sustainability Week.

RUDE Boy will be demonstrating as follows:

1.  how to fix a leaking garden hose

2. how to change a three point electrical plug on an electrical cord

and if any person brings along an electrical appliance that’s not working, he can test it with a multi meter.

RUDE Girl will be demonstrating as follows:

1.  what is sashiko mending?

2.  examples of basic sewing/mending

We will be in attendance for all of the event and will be chatting generally to the public about the first Repair Cafe on the 6th March at Rhubarb Wholefoods from 10am to 12md.

We hope to meet some of our blog followers in Yarraville on the 21st of this month or at future Repair Cafes.  Please come and say hi to us if you are in the area.

Check out the repair of RUDE Boy’s around the house shorts in this video

RUDE Boy’s now famous Fabiani shorts will be on display at the Repair Cafe launch event.  Kylie’s op shop hot pants [photo below] do not even compare.


You can Beat The Man by saying no to buying new, until you are sure an item cannot be repaired, by the friendly tinkers and tailors at your local Repair Cafe.

RUDE Boy Rocks Disruptive DIY

Men, we don’t get much, as far as holidays go – Father’s Day.


RUDE Boy is on a break away from his part-time employment for 6 weeks and has been doing some odd jobs.  We cannot get enough of his fix-it acumen.  I have let him know he has a wife not a life, and there is no rest.  That there is time enough to rest when you are dead!  Oh dear, I do hope you all get our Aussie humour and that there is a ‘u’ in humor.

These light fittings were both rescued from landfill.  But the dish shaped retro 60s light fitting fits the decor better.  The three pendant light fitting has been replaced.  We just had a check on eBay and the retro 60s fitting was $40.  Ours cost a couple of dollars.  It still has the original brown Bakelite light globe holders.

Snapshot 2 (26-06-2015 4-06 PM)

Three pendant light fitting from landfill has been replaced. Handmade place mat it sits upon is one of two and was also rescued from landfill.

Snapshot 1 (26-06-2015 4-05 PM)

1960s retro light fitting rescued from landfill has replaced the three pendant light fitting.

The Vulcan hot water system that has been removed by RUDE Boy was 18 years old and rusted out.  He sourced a secondhand Rheem 400 litre electric hot water service on eBay for $150.  New, these systems are priced around $1,600.  And then of course there is the plumber and electrician costs to add-on top of that.  RUDE Boy doing this disruptive DIY has saved our household $1,800 or thereabouts.

Snapshot 4 (26-06-2015 4-12 PM)

18-year-old Vulcan electric hot water system 315L has seen better days.

Snapshot 5 (26-06-2015 4-12 PM)

7-year-old Rheem electric hot water system 400L purchased on eBay for $150.00. Works a treat!

Beat The Man and be disruptive, if safe to do so, and you can!  Oh, and the hot shower was lovely.

Cloche and Crochet

Hello to RUDE’S followers and thank you for following our blog.  Many of you know that RUDE Girl writes a weekly Friday blog post.  I really love sharing our frugal journey with you all.

It’s now 8pm in Melbourne, Australia as I write this blog post.  RUDE had another priority today, and that was to do some housework!!  Yes, boring but it could not be put off any longer.  Lots of dust on the floorboards and furniture.  And the cork flooring in the kitchen really did need to be mopped over. My feet were sticking to the floor, yikes!

Another thing RUDE has been doing a bit off in the last few days is de-cluttering.  We have given some stuff away but have also been selling some things on Ebay and Buy Swap Sell sites.  We do not really enjoy selling as a rule, however it has bought in a little bit of extra play money.

Anyway, because it’s getting late I am doing a quick post this Friday.  I just have to share that I have been making cloche caps or capats out of recycled fabric. I wanted to make a contemporary cloche capat out of denim.  The fashion article titled Denim Revolution below inspired me to create a new look cloche with a vintage twist.

Denim Rev Weekend Sat 13 Jun 2015

Photo source: Weekend Liftout Sunday Herald Sat 13 June 2015

I adore 1920s style fashion and it really does suit my tall and lean frame.  I am definitely not suited to 1950s style as there is no hourglass shape happening with me.  And I do not like any clothes that are waisted, preferring to accentuate my hips.

1920s Style Fashion


Vintage denim skirt made in Australia. Rescued from landfill. Fabric used to make a cloche cap.

I have made three cloche capats so far, and then realised I required crocheted flowers to embellish the caps.  Therefore this week I taught myself to crochet with the help of some very helpful Youtube videos, such as Craft4Love and bobwilson123.

2015-06-15 14.20.42

Right side view of cloche with handmade crocheted flower

Denim Cloche Cap

Denim cloche capat handmade by RUDE Girl


Lace cloche capat [photo from the internet]. RUDE Girl would like to make something like this for a wedding.

“The right hat may also enliven our imagination of the past….an old-fashioned cloche, a picture hat, or a toque trimmed with a pouf of polka-dotted veiling is just enough to make us feel as if we were living in another, romantic age”.  ~ anon

I am currently making a cloche from red fulled wool and plan to add a purple crocheted flower or heart.  The red jumper that was fulled was rescued from landfill.  I have my daughter’s wedding in December and if my hair is still very short, I would like to make and wear a lined lace cloche.  Not sure yet but plenty of time to practise cloche making.  I would really like to crochet a cloche capat but have to find a tutorial on Youtube, as I do not like following written patterns.

Beat The Man and be your very own milliner!