|Gene hammering the lid to make it fit.|
If it is necessary to ship about 500 pounds of rock, it is most often shipped in a 55 gallon metal drum. These drums are used to ship rock all over the world and come in a variety of sizes; even though they all held 55 gallons of crude oil or juice concentrate originally. The top of the barrel is cut out, a cover made with some sort of metal ring to attach the cover to the barrel; usually with a bolt to hold it.
These rings and covers also come in a great variety of sizes and designs to match a particular barrel. The barrel rings may require a specific size bolt or a bolt of sufficient length.
|Veronica on the barrel holding the ring while Gene hammers.|
Now, when a barrel arrives somewhere, the rock is taken out of the barrel, used or displayed or whatever and the barrel lid and ring are thrown into a pile of other barrel lids and rings. When a barrel is shipped the barrel is filled with rock and a lid and ring are selected from the pile of lids and rings to seal the barrel. They never fit properly; especially in Tucson.
|Almost done hammering.|
In the picture accompanying this blog is a method commonly used to make a slightly too big barrel cover fit a slightly too small barrel. If someone stands on top of the lid while someone else beats on it with a big hammer; it can be made to fit the barrel. The ring has to be bolted on before the person gets off or the cover may pop off. The ring in this particular case was slightly small, requiring a longer bolt than usual. Such a bolt could not be found even though these various sized bolts are placed in a box for easy recovery when needed. When a nut was finally attached to the barely long enough bolt to secure the ring, the person on the barrel was allowed to get off and not required to travel with the shipment to its destination.
|Will it fit?|
|Success! Fitting the ring around the barrel.|