Thursday, August 25, 2011

Daryl's Memoirs

I left school when i was fifteen and started my apprenticeship in 1962. In those days you finished school after grade ten and went straight to work. Most of the time people got jobs through word of mouth or someone would vouch for you and say you were a good kid. There didn't seem to be as much of an age gap as there is these days. I guess people just grew up faster and by fifteen i was treated like all the other men.
A friend of my fathers got me a job as a Fitter and Turner for J.H. Stronman. I think my dad put the word around that his kid needed a job and that's how it came about.
The workshop was at Stones Corner but is no longer there. I think theres a radio station on part of the land where a section of the workshop was. I'm not sure i haven't been to Stones Corner in a lot of years, but most of the industry moved out in the 70's so its all different to when i remember.
In those days when you had a job interview it was normal for the owner of the company to come out to your house to meet your parents, have a chat and make sure your a good kid.
The year before when i was still at school i saw a pulse jet rocket in the window of a hobby shop on Adelaide street in the city. I can't remember why but the shop was closed on what must have been a Saturday. After looking at it in the window for a good while i figured i could make one myself without having to buy the kit. My dad always bought Popular Mechanics which was like a hobby book from England, and from memory there was a small article on pulse jets which helped somewhat.
The pulse jet i made worked, but didn't work real well. It had a spark plug when it should have used a glow plug and not having a welder i brazed the rocket together, and when it got hot it blew out the side. I never bothered with jets after that.
When the owner of J.H. Stronman came for the interview i showed him the pulse jet I'd made and i think that's what got me the job. I started the following Monday and got assigned to a fella named Tom machining rough castings to make winches for ships or making dies to stamp stainless steel plate into ash trays mostly.
Not sure what else there is to say. Hope that helps. Daryl

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