Yesterday I wanted to make a special thank you card for a friend who recently gave us a wonderful gift. I decided on an idea that matched her personality and assembled my supplies.
As I started working on the card, I decided it needed more texture – a bit of embossing perhaps, for the background of my focal image. So I pulled out my die-cutting machine and a favorite embossing folder. But when I got ready to run the folder through the pressure rollers in the machine, the handle wouldn’t turn at all. I’d been having some problems with the handle mechanism for a while, but now it was totally frozen.
Of course, my warranty had recently expired and I didn’t have a clue what the problem was. All I could see were dollar signs to replace one of my favorite crafting tools. And I wasn’t happy at all!
So I did the unthinkable – I began to take the machine apart to see how it worked. I wasn’t sure what I’d find or even if I could fix it, but since I’d probably have to buy a new machine anyway… I decided to risk it to satisfy my curiosity.
Since you can find just about any kind of information on the Internet, I went to my favorite craft forum, Splitcoast Stampers, to see if anyone there had ever had trouble with their die-cutter. Lo and behold, I did find several crafters whose machines had developed problems similar to mine. Following their links, I arrived at one site where the photos showed a dismembered die-cutter as the crafter shared her problem and how her wonderful hubby fixed it.
Like my friend’s machine, my problem was a little bearing inside the handle mechanism which rusted and broke, preventing the crankshaft from turning to move the pressure rollers. My hubby confirmed the diagnosis. But because I didn’t realize it when the problem started, I had forced the handle, causing the crankshaft to twist as well, making it almost impossible for me to get it out.
To make a long story short, the owner of a local machine shop was able to get the twisted crankshaft out for me. I called the die-cutter manufacturer and was able to get inexpensive replacement parts – so in about a week, my machine will be as good as new!
Often, it’s little things in life (like those tiny bearings) that build up to cause us big problems. We try to force our own solutions, without God’s help, causing even more problems. But if we keep focused on God and our relationship to him, trusting in the advice from his divine “fix-it” manual, we will function smoothly, no matter how much pressure life puts on us.
Thank you Lord, for your Word that gives us peace and keeps us on track in the mists of life’s pressure. Amen