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To be a true Thriftster, you have to use duct tape (or another form of adhesive) to salvage or maintain pieces of your equipment in order to make it last longer than anyone thought humanly possible. By the way, this is Rule #14 in your Thriftster Handbook.
My use of duct tape on my Lean Green Machine (as I fondly call her) started last month while on a family vacation in northern Minnesota. On a sunny day, I was driving down the road with my mother riding shotgun – and brother in the back when we suddenly heard some rumblings and knocking sounds coming from the passenger-side door. It was the door panel – and it was coming loose. My mother – acting instinctively and with daft maneuvering – rolled down the window and promptly stuck her right-arm out to hold the panel in place (see photo).
Shortly after, I was able to pull over at a gas station and my brother and I went to work. Like true professionals (who have done this sort of thing before) we sized up the door, looked at each, nodded and started unrolling tape.
My brother laid down a few strips to secure the panel in place. He was so meticulous in his taping, that he left no outward sign of duct tape holding the door and panel together. It was beautiful.
And, it held. For almost two weeks until I was driving down the highway and heard the familiar rumbling sounds coming from the passenger side. I was able to do a double-over-cross-wrap around the door, with a under-side mount to secure the door in place (only attempt in extreme situations, such as this). While not as clean-looking as the bro, it has since held.
I realize my duty as a responsible driver on the road is to make sure my car is properly secured with no flying objects coming loose while driving down the highways at speeds just over 55 mph. But, I don’t have any immediate or long-term plans to fix my door panel. I’m confident my duct tape will hold. I’m even looking at purchasing green duct tape to match the exterior. Who knows.
If you see my Green Machine driving down the freeway and we happen to exchange a passing glance – throw me a quick tip-of-the-hat and I’ll be sure to nod back in your direction.
Keep at it Thriftsters.
What’s the latest thing you’ve duct-taped?