Picture of Handy Tricks 8: Island Handy Tricks
Handy Tricks 8: Island Handy Tricks! Do stuff with stuff on an Island.
I go back to Maui periodically, so watch this space for more tricks.

To see even more handy tricks, check out the rest of the saga at
Handy Tricks 9: Oodles of random tricks
and Handy Tricks 7: Bike Mods and Projects
and Fifty Handy Tricks.
and 40 More Handy Tricks
and Australian Handy Tricks
and Guatemalan Handy Tricks
and Yet More Handy Tricks
and Handy Tricks Six!
For a bunch of things that didn't work, check out How Not To.

First Trick: Old tires are perfect to park a boat on.
These are the Maui Wailea Canoe club's 6 person racing canoes. The canoe never touches the ground. The paddlers pick it up in the water and carry it onto land. They set it on tires or in cradles lined with carpet scraps.
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Step 1: Canoe Dolly with Golf Cart Wheels

Picture of Canoe Dolly with Golf Cart Wheels
Wailea Canoe Club has this slick homemade dolly for putting boats in and out of the water. Purpose-made beach wheels are expensive. Wheels from junk golfcarts are free.

Step 2: Wind Speed Flags

Picture of Wind Speed Flags
At Kite Beach Maui.
The flags are different lengths and possibly different weights.
If a flag is flying straight out, that makes it easy to read the number. That's the windspeed.
If a flag is hanging and wagging around, there's not that much wind.

Step 3: Lazy Man's Cherry Picker

Picture of Lazy Man's Cherry Picker
Johnny V the surfboard guru has a Surinam Cherry tree in his yard in Haiku Maui. The fruits look like little red pumpkins. They're really tasty like tart cherries. Here's how you harvest them, just put some sheets under the tree and let it dump cherries on them. He says "If I don't rake them up every day It's like walking through a pile of mush. And you can't kill these things. Want some saplings? Here's a hundred of them." He points to a forest of surinam cherry tree shoots sprouting under the tree.
NoviceRick7 months ago

thats not a great example. i have seen painted ones with longer 'petals' and turned totally inside out (so you see no tread). looked like flowers

NoviceRick7 months ago

I love good wood. will remember that

NoviceRick7 months ago

you are so halarious lol

qolque3 years ago
Ok, regrettable the way it works, but you can't seriously mean this as a handy trick?! You suggesting I try this on my island??
sockless4 years ago
It's the same here in New Zealand, we have honesty boxes on the side of the road and in workplaces, some of them even have open boxes for the money, so you can get change for your fiver. Sadly some people are ruining this custom.
CapnChkn6 years ago
Prickly Pears are one of the most cosmopolitan cactuses in the world. As cactus goes, fairly mundane, some of the species are downright evil! Cactus is common here in Florida, and I can tell you getting a spine in your flesh is not a fun project. The hairs are a nuisance at best. All of the hairy spiny things that come from a cactus are barbed, and not meant to be pleasant by any means. I remember one drunk night where I finally laid down only to wake with the hairs from a cactus all down my back. Euell Gibbons, and who remebers him? He says in one of his books (Stalking the healthful herbs?) to use some heavy gloves, slit the pear down the side, and peel the skin from it "untouched by human hands."
aren't prickly pears called "dragon fruit"? in Mexico in only one small town going thats between Guzman and Guadalajara is the only place in the world that you can find different colored "prickly pears"or dragon fruit or the spanish name "pitayas". they are white, yellow, red,purple. the white ones are the sweetest.
its not the only place in the world, and i know because ive bought pitayas in Puebla from the farmers there. They had even a pinkish variety claimed to be "unique", so you get the point. Pitayas are not like dragon fruit (altough they could be related, i dont know). But for what i know, and i live in Mexico and have some knowledge of it, pitayas are just a variety of "tunas", (fishy name, uh?), this is, the fruit of a cactus called nopal. I know this is a very old thread, but guessed it should be fine to spread the light :D

"Stalking the Wild Asparagus"! Amazing book, and an amazing guy...
Johenix erosser5 years ago
"Stalking the Blue Eyed Scallops" and "Stalking the Good Life" too. All three need a reprinting, maybe in a single volume.
Here in Kingman, Arizona jumping cholla is notorious. You barely touch it and it hooks on to you and gives a painful sting
TO take the hairs off you can take a bucket of sand put your pears in it cover them with some sand then shake away, and the hairs come off after a lil.
i singe the hairs off of my prickly pears.
When I made prickly pear jelly a few weeks ago I  boiled the fruit before I peeled them to soften the glochids.
Legion5 years ago
I believe it is legal so long as the cab of the truck is full. I seem to recall that in the driver's manual.
Hawaiian hitchhiking is a wonderful way to get around and meet interesting people though.
Tobita5 years ago
I used to want to open a coconut plantation. Then I thought of coconut crabs....
rsakamaki5 years ago
got it wrong here. Lau is leaf, hala is pandanus.
TimAnderson (author)  rsakamaki5 years ago
Mahalo Nui! My mistake, it's fixed now
BoeroBoy5 years ago
And yet MORE toilet worship. That makes 4! :-)
BoeroBoy5 years ago
Star seems to have a toilet fetish. Rage against the Latrine and now this? Hmph.
SG1Oniell5 years ago
Slow down this aint the mainland, that's great, Island Time was so relaxed.
SG1Oniell5 years ago
Nice, I used to live on Maui at Makena for a while, I loved it there. Beautiful work, reminds me of the good days. And the sugar cane, reminded me of how badly it smells when they burn it. Driving from Makena to Lahaina town was a pain whenever they were burning. The Coral fort and Banyan tree still there?
I Here in Mexico they sell sugar cane cut up in bags, and they even sell cane juice. Yum!
ramedia6 years ago
The life guard station is on skids because it needs to move back in the winter and forward in the summer. That is the same here in Los Angeles. Not to say that your beach isn't eroding.
scafool6 years ago
We used to pick them with tin cans, we used to scorch them with a quick fire (grass, straw) to get rid of the spines.
Grey_Wolfe6 years ago
Excellent nipple-thorn removal technique. lol Though for anyone with actual hair on their chest, it might be a debate as to which is worse. lol
jwilliam6 years ago
Not sure it's really worth the comment, but that style of flame has been around the custom paint scene for quite a while. There are online tutorials and books on how to do that. I think it came from a Californian, but it's been a while...
dchall86 years ago
I drive past about 1,000 bushels of pear fruit every weekend. My aunt used to make pp jelly that was amazing with a very delicate pink color. I have always been tempted to pick some of the fruit and make some, but now I'm glad I didn't. I've had those tiny thorns in my hands from cleaning up my mother's cactus garden as a kid. It is NOT pretty and is definitely something you remember for the rest of your life. I like the canoe dolly and the umbrella ideas, too.
Ich, we have people who use toilets for planters here, too... :/
BigD1456 years ago
Or maybe give Hawaii back to its people.... Unfortunately, I doubt that.
Hoopajoo6 years ago
The best way to get the barbs out of your skin is to coat the affected area with white school glue, let it dry and carefully peel it off. It carries the thorns with it. Seconding Sleighbedguy, singing them is the best way to avoid the barbs. I use a pair of heavy leather gloves with a thick fleece lining to pull the pads and pods. then I get a good bed of coals going and burn the thorns off. Also, a potato peeler is perfect for skinning the pads and pods.
Try singeing the fruit before you pick it. This removes the cactus spines(thorns) before they get in your skin.
shooby6 years ago
That coconut milk blending islander was pretty pasty looking. Maybe spend more time climbing coconut trees, less time in the kitchen.
LinuxH4x0r6 years ago
Good tips! I'm looking forward to picking some of those prickly pears this year