If you live on a farm there is a fair chance you may understand the following directive:
“Fill up the 5020 from the 44, then take that roll of No.8 out past the 66. You’ll need a 5/16th and your 410 but don’t take the dogs because there is 1080 about”.
I’ve been having a little fun this week with some great farming girls in a group with the unfortunate name of “Girls R Traders” (named by a man would you believe!). We’ve been collating the farming terms that are reduced to their barest abbreviations, which in many cases is purely a number. So if the above directive is all gibberish to you, read on for an exposé of farming by numbers.
1080: A type of poison used for feral animal control. It is also fatal to dogs so we have not used it on Rocky Springs. Other poisons include 24D and 245T.
1/25/100: Rainfall records: 1 inch = 25 millimetres = 100 points. Irrelevant. Zero is still zero whether it is inches, millimetres or points.
2 tooth: A young animal (cow or sheep) losing its baby teeth (milk teeth) and getting its first adult teeth. The price per kilogram for an animal drops remarkably once it starts “cutting 2”.
2 inch: The diameter of water pipe. We have fittings for ½ inch, ¾ inch, 1 inch, 1½ inch and 2 inch pipe. You can guarantee that when a pipe breaks under the house, in 40 degrees, it will be some obscure diameter such as 1¾.
22: A small rifle, suitable for most jobs on the farm, with a caliber of .22. Other popular rifles include 223 and 303. This is all gibberish to me!
24/7: Average working week of a farmer.
4×4: A four-wheel-drive vehicle; one capable of getting around Rocky Springs rocks.
4/5ths of f@#k all: The amount of rain we’ve received recently
40: winks. I wish.
410: A small shotgun, also known as a snake gun and beloved by farmwives all over the country. For bigger threats try a 12 gauge.
44: A 44 gallon drum usually used to store fuel but has a multitude of uses including rubbish bin, grain storage, dog kennel and the very popular fire bucket.
444: A bloody good wine from Wyndham Estate. Very useful after a full day mustering on Rocky Springs.
450: Brian’s KTM dirt bike. Dangerous.
5/16th: A type of spanner. All spanners are referred to by their number, either in metric or imperial form. There is a No. 10 in every farm vehicle we own.
50/50: The survival chances of the average Merino sheep. Obviously this entry was submitted by one of the Girls R Traders because I know 4/5ths of f@#k all about sheep. Now Brian on the other hand …..
555: Another good Wyndham Estate wine. What excuse would you like?
66: A 66kv power (electricity) line. We have one that dissects the property. A lightning strike to the 66 caused a fire on Rocky Springs last year .
D4: A little bulldozer. I would like a D6, 8 or 10 to deal with some of these rocks on Rocky Springs.
No. 8: A thick, pliable fencing wire. Aside from fencing it has been used to hold together just about anything on a farm.
PN16: A type of poly water pipe where the PN refers to Pressure Number. PN16 is high pressure pipe. We use it to pump from our bore to our header tank. If we put PN8 here would have poly pipe with a big hole ripped in it.
WD40: A lubricant. Tie it up with No. 8. Get it off with WD40.
Well, the Girls R Traders and I are exhausted. Who can add to this list?