What’s That For?

On my way to work, I spotted a few trucks parked along Washington, near where the construction is happening along Wabash Avenue.

The thing on the right caught my eye, as I was walking past. The grill on top made me think that fire was involved in some way. The more I looked at it, the less I knew what it was or how it worked. And the more curious I got.

What was the trough for? Did this machine use the bricks nearby? Was it some kind of auto-brick laying machine?

I happened to spot three guys standing on the other side of the truck. After lingering around a few seconds, I caught the eye of one of the crew. I apologized for interrupting, and asked what the machine on the truck was and how it worked.

Turns out, the machine is a mixer for mortar. I’m familiar with a regular cement mixer, so I wasn’t expecting a mixer to be so flat/horizontal. But paired with the bricks nearby, I guess that makes sense.

The guy also pointed to a wheelbarrow nearby, saying that the mortar is poured into the wheelbarrow… making me think that the mixer itself stays on the truck. Maybe it makes for less loading/unloading.

Funny thing – while I was walking by I was thinking about the various build tools I use at my job (things like npm, Gulp, and Webpack that make coding easier).

I thought about this mixer in much the same way. I knew folks nearby used it, but I wasn’t sure how. What does it do? How is it used? Why do you use it, and does it make things easier?

Same questions, different profession.

Always Ask
Alex and His Mysterious Box
On the Merits of Curiosity and Being a Little Extroverted

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