Fire And Ice

Not the old video game. I unearthed a couple photos from the depths of my Flickr account, taken after an ice storm in 2005.

A Christmas Star



Rainy So. Freeport Harbor

So. Freeport Dinghys 2

We went down to Harraseeket Lobster Co. for anniversary supper yesterday, and my wife was kind enough to tool around the cold, rainy, wet wharf for a few minutes so I could take some pictures. A couple more after the break!

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Repairing A Mic Stand Adjustment Bolt Thingy

There’s got to be a better term for those little knobs that you tighten (or loosen) to adjust mic stands. And this is actually about making new ones for replacements. Anyway. A couple of these knobs stripped or went missing and here’s how I put wooden knobs on standard (cheap) hardware store bolts to replace them. Continue reading

On Vacuum-Pumping Water Out Of Large Things Filled With Water

If you, like I, have a boat full of water (and sticks, and leaves, and dirt, and other crud I was scrubbing out of it), then you also may not want to just tip it up and let all that trickle through the hull drain at a slow an increasingly clogging rate. Never mind the residue left inside the hull.

My trusty garden-hose siphon was not going to cut it this time, either. I could have used a bailer… but that’s just not as much fun. And no, thank you, I didn’t want to use my trusty Rainbow vacuum cleaner to pump a gallon at a time again (an often dicey and tedious prospect). And more splashy-messy. So I used good ol’ R2VAC2 as a suction pump/super-siphon starter.

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Heavy Weather

I don’t think I’ve ever seen that orange icon, until yesterday, at which point it was novel. Now, if I look carefully, I think I can see R2D2 and C3PO wandering across dunes. I never thought I’d look forward to 90° weather in Maine.

When The First Idea Doesn’t Work…

When I put the headlight on the snowblower and then proudly wrote a post detailing my amazing methods and proclaiming “it works”, well, I should have waited because it doesn’t. It held up the light until I actually started the tractor. Then it slowly tilted because the clamp wasn’t tight enough and I spent that hour of snowblowing in between correcting the light angle. Continue reading

In Which We Upgrade An Antenna

As I’m sure you all know and undoubtedly agree, the bigger the antenna the better it works. This is true of wide-band receive aerials, anyway, at least up to full wavelength or so (I think – my antenna theory is a little rusty these days). Most people don’t like ten-foot antennae on their car, though, so most AM/FM receive antennas are quite a bit shorter. I, however, being a fan of good radio reception and also of big antennae, decided it was time to upgrade the car again. Continue reading

It’s Spring, And The Servers Are Migrating

I got another eMachine tower from a friend on freecycle a couple weeks ago (thanks Dan!), which is, conveniently, an upgrade from my current tower. We have progressed from an Athlon 2700+ to a 3.3Ghz Celeron D with faster RAM and SATA on the motherboard, too! We are way hip, dude. So to upgrade we will go. The trick is to fit my DVD burner and twin 250GB PATA drives in with the stock 120GB SATA disk all into the minitower. I had to put my old Promise TX2 (ATA-100) controller in for the big drives since the blessing of modern progress has given me a four spiffy SATA channels but only one ATA. And I need that for the optical drives. Things could be worse.

Like, for instance, running out of power connectors. The blessed progress also gave me only two standard molex connectors, two SATA power connectors, and a floppy drive plug. (Like I said, modern progress.) I had to use my trusty power splitter and hack in another molex from my collection of wire bits.

Thanks to said molex also having a floppy power plug attached, we have sucessfully adapted Floppy Power to Non-Floppy Things, both cleverly and non-destructively. If you, too, find yourself in need of adaption, get one normal-size paper clip, straighten it out, cut it into four fairly equal pieces, and stick them into one of the floppy power plugs, like so.

Then, plug it into the other floppy power plug. Make sure you match up wire colors or things will blow up. (Or, at least, smell bad and not work again, ever.)  Your paper-clip pins will probably get pushed out the back of one of the plugs, which is OK as long as you push them back in with your screwdriver or something. That’s why they are so long to begin with.

Then, plug it all in. Nothing wasted! All I need now is more RAM, though that’s not so critical running a light-duty file/backup/media server with Crunchbang.

Installing a Vacuum Gauge in a Volvo 240

In my quest for fuel economy – and in the interest of having more gauges and fancy lights in my car – I installed a vacuum gauge. Since I drive a car made well prior to the advent of ODB-II I am left out of all the fun electronic things one can plug in that way I must instead resort to old-school mechanical-type things, like a vacuum gauge.

I though I’d document it since the forum people say, essentially, you hook it into the manifold or vacuum line, you can figure it out, it’s not hard. They’re right, but I like photos. So here they are.
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