Wednesday, November 22, 2017

November 21st

I took Tilly to the vet's for her annual.  She had a few injections, and spent the afternoon sleeping.   She was stiff in her legs where the injections were when she got up, so I spent a few minutes worrying about her, but she's fine.

November 20th

I went to the eye-quack.  I need new glasses again, and spent a while walking around with dilated pupils - I always hate that.

November 19th

I'm covering our APAC enginerd, who's on holiday for the next 3 weeks, so I pottered around doing pretty much nothing, then started work at 14:00.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

November 18th

I started the day going over to the airport to meet Dennis to sell him one of my old Rotax 503s.  I preflighted the Flightstar, then found one of the hangar doors is totally jammed, so I can't get the damned plane out.  When Dennis arrived, we loaded the engine up in his car, and then he and his friend Jerry went for experience flights with Ken in the gyroplane.

I bailed out and went home to get ready, then met Russ in Sacramento to go and see Guns and Roses at the Golden 1 stadium.  I'd like to thank the Sacramento taxpayers for building a new stadium for the billionaire Maloof brothers' basketball team, as it's actually a pretty nice arena.  There wasn't a backup band, so they started at 20:00 and finished shortly before midnight!

Thursday, November 16, 2017

November 15th

I went to the EAA meeting, where we voted for the board next year.  I'm not on it :o)

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

November 14th

I went back to the airfield to try and get the flywheel off the 503.  The penetrating oil hadn't helped, so I started adding heat to the flywheel until it popped it off.  Yay :o)

November 13th

From talking to Ken, the guy who's looking at buying one of my 503 engines doesn't want or need the flywheel to the gearbox, so I figured I should pull that.  Vic got me a 3 jaw puller assortment, so I took that over to the airfield and got it all hooked up and tried to yank the flywheel free.  No dice.  I've got it as tight as I can get it by myself, so I sprayed some penetrating oil on it and left for the evening.

Monday, November 13, 2017

November 12th

I started the day doing some updating on the EAA website, then I went to the airport to talk to Bruce for the newsletter.

I then met a guy about one of the gearboxes I have for sale - he took it, but later discovered that he'd left a part in the hangar.  Oh well, he can pick that up later.

I went over to the powered parachute flyin to see what was going on, and to watch some of the guys leave for a little flight.  I took the Flightstar out for a bit, but it was cold and bumpy, so I wasn't gone for long.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

November 11th

I started the day at the airport, cooking breakfasts.  We had hoped that the guys from the powered parachute flyin were coming over to join us, but they flew later because they'd had to wait for the for to burn off.
I took a load of tools with me, to work on the gearbox that's on the 503, and that came off really quickly.  There were a bunch of gyroplanes there, as everybody was waiting to see Larry fly his Tangogyro, but a check engine light grounded that, so I went up in the Flightstar for a bit.  It was pretty cold, so I was unimpressed when a guy in a Mooney asked us to extend to allow him to do a 6 mile instrument approach - I could have got in and landed in the time it took him to get there.

In the evening, I spent a little time getting Kodi working as the default media centre application working, so we'll see how that works out.

Friday, November 10, 2017

November 8th

I took the van to get the wheels balanced, and rotated while we're at it.

When they bring a vehicle in to the bay, they beep the horn to alert their cow-orkers that they're coming in - the guy who drove the van in liked the horn, so he beeped it over and over again.  It's such a friendly little sound, after all :o)

The balance was only off on one wheel, so I now have a new weight to paint, and I need to do the centre caps again now they've been off.

November 7th

The Proofpoint buyout press release went out, and we had a meeting with the Proofpoint manager and HR person.  They seem nice, but for the moment everything'll continue as it is now.

November 6th

We had an all-hands meeting at work to find out we're being bought out by Proofpoint.  Sadly it's not for billions of dollars, so I won't be retiring any time soon.

Monday, November 6, 2017

November 5th

The clocks went back, so I got up at an ungodly hour, and ended up changing all the clocks in the house.

After wasting time around the house, I went to the airfield to see the guy about the engine.  He seems interested, but we couldn't split the engine from the gearbox, so I'll sort that out and call him back.  Of course, by the time we'd finished cursing at it, it was too late to fly (it now gets dark at 17:00).

Sunday, November 5, 2017

November 4th

It's started raining, so I'm thinking summer's done with.

I've been corresponding with somebody who's interested in buying one of the old plane engines I have.  I was supposed to meet him at the airport in the afternoon, so I headed over there early to get some safety wiring done on the plane before he showed up.  Well, he didn't show up, so I ended up going home.  He called to say he was having some problems with a pickup he was doing in Folsom, but that he hoped to get over later.  Later came, and he called again to say he was picking up an ultralight, and the truck he'd rented had thrown it's reverse gear, so he'd been spending a lot of time and effort getting that sorted out, so was going home.  Fine, we'll try again tomorrow, maybe.

In the evening, we watched "War for the Planet of the Apes", and it was pretty good.  I'm hoping they'll leave it there, as the trilogy tells the story of Caesar's life, but I'm pretty sure they won't.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

November 1st

A new month, so here's the solar stats:

Power billed

Power generated









In the evening, I went to the EAA board meeting, where things and stuff were discussed.

Monday, October 30, 2017

October 30th

I took the day off, and wasted most of it watching TV while playing around with Kodi on the home theatre PC... Windows Media Centre is back down to 5 days' guide data.  I think I've got most things working for the TV and DVD, and it's mostly there for the Blu-Ray stuff too (might need some more software to finish that though).

October 29th

We replaced a leaky hose in the kitchen, eventually getting it all put together with the various adapters and washers and suchlike.

In the afternoon, I went over to the airfield and took the plane out for a bit.

In the evening, I played around with Kodi on the home theatre, and (hopefully) fixed a problem with the guide downloading.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

October 28th

I started the day at the airport, supervising Tom cooking breakfast for a bunch of the EAA membership.  Don came over from Cameron Park with his gyroplane to do a presentation, and eventually we had a bunch of people there to listen to him.  He did several introductory flights - I even took one and played with forced landings.  I headed home to get cleaned up and then headed back to take the Flightstar out for a couple of circuits.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

October 22nd

I had intended to go flying, but when I was going to head out, the wind was listed as 12 miles an hour, gusting to 17.  So I decided to stay home, but at ~17:30, it had dropped to less than 5mph.  Bummer.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

October 21st

The home theatre PC has been having trouble downloading the TV Guide, so I started playing with Kodi again.  I've got in installed, and the TV stuff set up.  It should be downloading the guide itself (but I'll have to wait and see if that continues working), but it threw an error when I went to set up a season recording.  Shortly after this, the Windows Media Centre guide downloaded, so at least I have time to get this working.  I need to test things, then get it to deal with DVDs and Blu-Rays, and then I'll finish the move over to it.  Probably.  I still like WMC, as it's easy to use, but the constant Microsoft screwups are getting tiresome.

In the afternoon, I went to the airfield and looked at the oil pump on the engine - it doesn't seem to be shutting off properly.  It's not the cable by itself, and it's not the pump by itself, so it's probably the routing of the cable.  I've rerouted it a little, and that didn't seem to help too much, but it had closed down properly when I came back from my flight.  I'm thinking the rattling of the engine helps :o)  Still, too much oil just means that it's using about as much as when it's being pre-mixed, so I'm not going to lose too much sleep over it.

October 18th

I went to the airfield and barbecued for about 25 of my closest friends.  Bruce explained everything that had happened at the latest airport hangar meeting (short version - the rent is only going up by around 10%, and they're not going to be insufferable dicks about everything else), and Marty talked about his career designing propellers and rotors for the XV-15 and V-22.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

October 17th

I went to the airfield for a hangar tenant meeting.  Basically the city is taking over the hangars, but doesn't seem to have a plan for how they're doing it, and have communicated this lack of a plan poorly.  We'll see what happens, but it'll be interesting.

Afterwards, Ron and I met at Costco to do the shopping for tomorrow's member's meeting barbecue.

Monday, October 16, 2017

October 15th

I started the day getting up on the roof and washing the smoke residue off the solar panels.  We'll see how long that lasts.

I changed the (endless, so I cut it off with the Dremel) chain and rear sprocket on the DRZ (it's been looking like it has some tight spots, and the rear sprockets are cheap).  The bigger (16T) front sprocket has only been on there for ~3,000 miles, and looks fine.  And is a pain to find - a lot are reported to let the chain hit the cases.  While I was working on things, I made a backing plate for the (cracked) number plate.  When you have a sheet of reasonably thick aluminium, everything is fixed by a piece of aluminium :o)

In the late afternoon, I went to the airfield and took the Flightstar out for a bimble.  The smoke's not terrible, but it is reducing visibility.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

October 14th

I started the day working, then I started the process to factory reset and restore my (slowing) Nexus tablet.  Hopefully this'll fix everything up right.

After that I went to the airfield, in case anybody showed up for the poker run.  Nobody did.

I then went over to Richard's hangar to heckle him working on his new spinner, and help him re-fibreglass it when he cracked part of it drilling out a poorly placed rivet.  After that, I went home for a bit, to do some more work, and update the EAA web site.

I went back in the afternoon, rearranged the hangar (Richard Pearl's bloody golf cart should be behind my plane, so I don't need to get it out to go and fly) and went out for a few circuits.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

October 11th

Ron and I decided to cancel the poker run on Saturday due to the 4 fires in the area that are killing visibility.  One is at over 850 acres, and is less than half contained.  The forecast wasn't showing any wind above 6mph before the weekend, so even if the fires were put out, there still wasn't time for the smoke to dissipate.

So obviously the wind came up this afternoon and cleared the smoke out of Roseville.  Of course, Auburn and Cameron Park are probably still a bit smokier, but we had a couple of people unable to get to Auburn 2 years ago, so it's probably the right decision.

October 10th

I got up early and played around with the hacked version of Windows Media Centre on the Windows 10 home theatre PC.  Deleting it (v6) and reinstalling the latest version (v8) seems to make it work, but I've lost the ability to search the guide for programmes, and the Blu-ray software (PowerDVD) has disappeared from WMC.  Still, it's working for now, and I have time to look into Kodi (again) and JRiver hopefully before they put in another update that breaks it.

October 9th

We started up the home theatre PC to watch TV, only to have it start upgrading (again) to Windows 10 Creator's Edition.  Despite being told not to.  And the fact that it was actually recording a programme when this started.  I can see that I'm going to have to figure something out, as Microsoft are going to force this update on me whatever I say and do.  Back to Windows 7, maybe.

October 8th

Too windy to fly, so I just pottered around the house again.  I got to go through the "backing out of the upgrade" process again on my home theatre PC, as the Windows 10 Creator's Edition breaks the hacked version of Windows Media Centre that I'm running.  Again.  I went through and did everything I can find to stop it upgrading again.

We did get to spend some time on the bracing of the tree in the front garden, as the wind had bent and broken the hollow metal support tubes that were already out there.

Sunday, October 8, 2017

October 7th

I started the day at the airport cooking breakfast for 20 or so of my closest friends.  Bruce and I then went out and dropped off cards for the poker run next week.

I went back to the airfield in the evening and took the plane out for a bit.  Jeez, it's getting dark earlier.

In the evening, we watched "Wonder Woman".

Thursday, October 5, 2017

October 5th

I took the van for its smog test after work, and it passed :o)  That's that for another 2 years :o)

October 4th

I went to the EAA board meeting, where things and stuff were discussed.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

October 3rd

I called the smog guy, and he said "come on over", so I went on over.  After sitting in the waiting room for 45 minutes, I went out to see how he was getting on - he couldn't find the evap cannister.  I had no idea what he was talking about, and he couldn't explain to me what it did, and he was aiming to close so we bailed on it for the evening.  When I got home, I looked at the evap diagram that's in the engine bay, and found that he's (probably) talking about a charcoal cannister that plugs in to the fuel pressure regulator.  I followed the hoses out of the fuel pressure regulator and found the charcoal cannister after a brief search under the rear wheel arch.  Oh well, I can now go back again some time :o)

October 2nd

I went to try and get the van smogged, but the guy was too busy.  Bah, maybe tomorrow.

October 1st

A new month, so here are the solar stats:
Power billed

Power generated









I had intended to go and drop off some of the cards for the poker run, but it was too windy (as in gusts over 20mph), so that didn't happen.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

September 30th

I went over to the airfield and took the plane out for an hour or so - there was a hot air balloon that launched before me, so I ended up going around him on the way back :o)

I "helped" Richard with some fibreglassing on his front cowl, then met Jim to go and drop stuff off for the poker run.  Unfortunately one of his magnetos failed, so we couldn't go - he's rebuilt the other one recently, but this one is a PITA to get out, so he was putting it off.  Well, now it gets done, I guess :o)

September 29th

I dropped Mum and Dad at the station to catch a bus to Stockton, a train to Bakersfield and a bus to Long Beach.

Tilly's exhausted.

September 28th

We went over to the airport so I could take Mum up in the Flightstar.  She's impressed with the new engine :o)

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

September 25th

We got up early and went to the airport so that Mum and Dad could fly with Andy in the N3 biplane.

We went through the Galleria and picked up Dad's Jelly Belly jelly beans, and stopped at the Green Acres nursery so Mum could take a look around.

September 24th

Dad and I got up early and went to the airport to take the plane out for a quick flight.  After that we went home and all went to Folsom to look around the old town, then on to the outlet stores.

September 23rd

Dad and I went to the airport first thing in the morning to cook breakfasts before Andy's presentation on his Cessna T-50.

September 22nd

Tilly and I went to Sacramento airport and picked up her grandparents :o)

September 20th

I spent the evening at the EAA membership meeting cooking burgers for ~25 of my closest friends :o)

Monday, September 18, 2017

September 17th

I started the day updating the EAA website with the latest newsletter.  I then got up on the roof and washed out the gutters where the angles of the roof join, as they get clogged with mud and cause the rain to flow under the tiles, causing all manner of other problems.

In the afternoon, we went to the airfield and took the plane out.  No alarms flying 2 up, even though it was 90F out.  We still hit ~6400rpm on takeoff, and that was generally good for ~800fpm.  It was very bumpy out, so we didn't fly for long, but that's the first time I've taken a passenger with the new engine :o)

Sunday, September 17, 2017

September 16th

We went to a van meetup at Folsom Lake.  Tilly had a whale of a time playing in the water with Vic, and we got to watch a guy in a Syncro bury his van up to the axles in soft sand, then just drive out.  I had been thinking of going flying in the afternoon / evening, but I was just too damn tired.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

September 10th

I helped Vic with some of the stuff for her company picnic, then went to the airfield and took the plane out again.

September 9th

I tinkered around in the garage making some braces for the (aftermarket) mirrors on the DRZ, then in the evening went to the airport.  I've been seeing the coolant temperatures running quite high, so I drained out some of the 50/50 antifreeze/coolant mixture, and put back in just water (I reckon I'm now at around 40/60).  The coolant temperatures are now better :o)

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

September 4th

Today was Labo(u)r Day, when Americans celebrate the wins of the union movement by going shopping.

I started the day at the airfield.  It was still smoky, but at least that means it's not too turbulent.

We watched "Avatar" while Vic did some stuff for her staff picnic later this month.

September 3rd

It's all smoky and hot still, so I changed the oil on the Jeep, as that's been bleating all weekend.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

September 2nd

I started the day at the airport cooking for the first Saturday breakfast - it was pretty damned hot already, so there weren't a massive number of people.

In the evening, I went back and took the plane out - it was over 100F, but there was pretty much no turbulence anywhere.  The smoke meant I couldn't see much though.

September 1st

A new month, so here are the solar stats:

Power billed

Power generated









The van was taken away, and I got a call around 4pm to say it was all fixed up - it was the new cylinder.  The thing is, I can't pick it up until Tuesday morning, due to the holiday on Monday :o(

Ron came over and picked up the old sofa that we've decided we don't need any more - that'll go into the hangar at the airport.

In the evening we watched "The Empire Strikes Back: Revisited".  I'll be honest, it's so long since I've seen the original and the special editions that I couldn't tell you what had been changed without checking :o)

August 31st

I went out to the garage and found a lot of brake fluid on the floor - one of the new cylinders is definitely leaking.  I put some brake fluid in the (empty) reservoir and pumped it up to the point I could turn the van around (obviously it was the wheel against the wall), then called Stephan's to see if they had any bright ideas what it could be before I jacked the van up to take a look.  Scotty said it was most likely the cylinder itself, and it'd need replacing again.  They're sending a tow truck tomorrow to get the van, as it obviously can't be driven like this.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

August 30th

I rode over to the airport good and early, and took the plane out until it got too bumpy, then stopped and looked at Chris' PC on the way home - I left him installing Windows again.

After I'd been home for a while, I was going out on my bicycle ride, and decided to ride over to Stephan's and pick up the van.  So, 25 miles and 2 hours later, I got to sit in traffic on the way home.

We went out and rented "Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 2", and I noticed something on the floor under the van - one of the new rear brake cylinders seems to be leaking.   Joy.

August 29th

I got up early and rode the DRZ over to the airfield to take the plane out.  On my first takeoff, the engine coughed a little, so I landed and took a look at it.  Everything looked fine, so I'm thinking it's because I didn't have the electric fuel pump running (the 582 can pull more fuel than the vacuum pump can supply).  I went back out, with the electric pump running, and everything was fine for several circuits, so I called that fixed.

When I got down, there were a bunch of guys over at Will's hangar, looking at his plywood spinner - there are a couple of cracks forming in it, so we all stood around making helpful suggestions on how to fix that.

I picked up some new jets for the carbs, and found that Chris was trying to clear a virus from his PC, so we played with that for a while, and I suggested just reinstalling Windows over the top of his current installation.

Monday, August 28, 2017

August 28th

I've taken the week off to kill some vacation time, and Vic was off today, so we took the van and dropped it off for a checkup - it's been over a year since Stephan's last looked it over.  They've announced that the bearing I changed is a little loose (it's had a thousand miles or so to bed in, so I'm not really surprised) and that one of the rear brake cylinders is starting to leak, so I said to hang on to it and fix those squawks (as I know I'll get around to it eventually, just not right now).

It was 109F, so I gave up on flying again - it's supposed to cool down a little tomorrow.

August 27th

I went out early and took the plane out - the exhaust gas temperature got quite hot on the climb out (thicker air, as it was cooler, so it was probably running a little lean), but not as hot as it has been before.  I pottered around for a while, then went home.

When we went out to get something to eat, we went over to the Tesla dealer to see if they have anything about the Model 3 - they don't, but they're expecting some in October.  The Model 3 is still longer than the van, so I don't see me getting one just yet, but it's always nice to see the latest hotness.

I had thought about going back in the evening, but it was 108F, and I just couldn't face dragging the doors open again, so we watched the Game of Thrones finale.

August 26th

I started the day at the airport cooking breakfast before Bruce's Foreflight presentation.  I went back in the evening and took the plane out for over an hour to finish up the test flight process for the new engine - then it was a pile of paperwork before going home.

August 25th

In the evening, we watched "Alien Covenant", and I'm not convinced that they haven't painted themselves into a corner there.

Friday, August 25, 2017

August 20th

After pottering around the house all day doing things and stuff, I went to the airport in the evening and took the plane out for a proper flight.  It's a bit quicker, and climbs nicely without too much drama - I was cruise climbing away from the river, and not paying attention to the vertical speed indicator.  I noticed at just over 1500', so I then had to lose height before heading back to the airport - a nice problem to have :o)  Not long now until I can fill the log book in and take passengers again :o)

Sunday, August 20, 2017

August 19th

I was having trouble getting back to sleep after the bloody rabbit started thumping, so I got up and put together the pre-registration stuff for the EAA Poker Run, and got that all set up and active on the website.  I've sent out a notification to the board, and 2 of them have already registered (so 4 hands in total).

We went to the airfield so Vic could try flying in the gyroplane, and while we were there, we pulled the jets out of the carbs and Ken drilled them out a tiny amount.  In the afternoon I went back, and that doesn't seem to have changed the EGTs at all, so I raised the needles one click, and that seems to have done the trick.  I'm still going to look at the larger main jets, but for now I can fly away from the airport :o)

Friday, August 18, 2017

August 16th

We went to the EAA membership meeting, where Bruce talked about Oshkosh.  Ken's on at me to go next year :o)

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

August 14th

I got out on my bicycle, and I don't know if it's the cooler weather we're having just now, the wind being in the right direction or the new headset and chain, but it feels almost like a new bike :o)

In the evening I got out to the airport and fiddled with the plane a little - I made sure the carbs were upright and level, and swapped the EFT probes over.  I only did 2 circuits (the wind was beating the crap out of me), but the EGTs didn't get anywhere near as high as they were yesterday, but I'd still like them to be a bit lower.  We'll see if I decide to raise the needles.

Monday, August 14, 2017

August 13th

We went out to get supplies (supplies!) and picked up a beach ball for Tilly - she really likes playing with them, and this one lasted almost 3 minutes.

We then got ourselves sorted out and replaced the leaking sprinkler valves in the back garden.  You're supposed to go valve to threaded connector, glued on to the pipes coming out of the ground.  That was looking problematic due to how close to the ground the pipes are (because of the patio), so we cut the old sprinklers off, installed a threaded to pipe fitting to the threaded adapters coming out of the ground, and then a short piece of pipe before the next threaded adapter into the valve.  This means there's about 1/2" of pipe you can cut to remove the valve, and then you just unscrew the threaded adapter and replace that bit.  There's an extra adapter there, true, but the pipe doesn't get shorter every time you do something with the valve.

I had intended to go flying in the evening, but the wind was gusty (it's cooling down in the next few days), so I decided to try and get out in the week.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

August 12th

I started the day at the airport cooking breakfasts before a talk on online flight planning.

When I got home, we moved the fish tank into the front room, and I spent some time on the EAA web site.

It's Tilly's birthday, so she got a couple of her favourite cookies.

When the postie finally arrived, they brought the operating limitations for the Flightstar, so I went out to the airport, put (raw, no more premix) gas in the plane and took it out for the first flight.  It accelerates and climbs great - usually I'm at 600' (ultralight pattern height) by the end of the runway, but I was there about half way down the runway now, and the VSI showed 800-900' per minute, despite the almost 3,000' density altitude.  Great!  Not so great was the overly high EGT on one cylinder.  I did a couple of circuits and put it away - I'll look at swapping the sensors in case it's a sensor problem.

When I got home, the postie had been again and left the water tank for the fridge, so I got that installed and now we have water and ice in the fridge again.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

August 11th

I figured the best way to make sure I wouldn't get the operating limitations today would be to pick up the bicycle, so I could go to the airport this evening.  As a lunch, I went and picked up the bicycle, and it's all sorted out.  I didn't get the operating limitations today.

In the evening, I installed a new chain on the bicycle.  I've read stuff that says you should be changing it every 1,000 miles or so, and thought "whatever", but was surprised at how much the old chain has stretched compared to a new chain.  You have to break the new chain to the right length, so I now have a new tool.

Later on, I got the new router working - the stunted software on the Arris 6580 router / modem makes that a lot more difficult than it needs to be, so I've kept that covering the older 2.4GHz devices.  5Ghz devices are now running a lot faster  - I'm seeing over 100Mbs to the interwebs.

Friday, August 11, 2017

August 10th

I called around, looking for bearings for the bicycle, but due to the planned obsolescence, nobody has them.  One very helpful guy (Roseville Cyclery) suggested changing the whole headset, as that wouldn't be that much more expensive (the bearings alone listed for $48).  Sadly he didn't have a headset in stock, but Performance Bicycle did, and would install it cheaply enough (I don't have the bearing puller and other tools required).  I took the bicycle over after work, kind of hoping they could do it then (I can change _motorcycle_ head bearings in about 20 minutes), but I get to pick it up tomorrow, all sorted out.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

August 9th

I spoke to Dilly at the FAA, and he's working on my new operating limitations.  Hopefully he can get those out today, ans I might even get to fly with the new engine this weekend :o)

The steering on the mountain bike has been getting a little stiff, so I figured it's time to check the bearings.  I got them out without too much aggravation, and found what looks like a flake of paint in the bottom one.  They don't feel great, even after a cleaning, but I was trying to get everything back together, and even with Vic's help, it wasn't having it.  While taking it apart again, one of the sealed bearings came apart and dumped the balls all over the floor.  I've found most of them, but it looks like I'll have to get new bearings before I can go riding again :o(

August 8th

I pulled the fridge apart and found the leak was coming from the hose that leaked last time.  When I ploughed through a bunch of parts diagrams, I found that there's a water tank with hoses going in and out, and I ordered one (rather than splice a new hose to the current old, tired hose).

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

August 7th

When I went to get Tilly an ice-cube at bed time, I found that the fridge is leaking water again.  I pulled it out and turned the water off - I'll play with it some other time.

August 6th

I went to the airport and installed the battery cable, and tested the oil level warning light (works!), then buttoned everything up and made sure it all still works.

I spent some time working on stuff for the EAA, and then I updated the operating handbook for the plane.

August 5th

I got up early and headed to the airport to cook breakfast for the great unwashed.  After that was done, I went and worked on the battery for the plane - I got the mount installed, and cut the battery cables to length (I needed to take them home to crimp the ends on).  I also drilled a hole in the panel for the 2 stroke oil level warning light, but I can't test it without power.  While Ken was there, I got him to help me weigh the plane, and when I got home I figured that it's now a lot better, weight and balance wise.

August 4th

When I was on my bicycle ride, I came around a corner on the trail and found a horse had crapped all over the place.  "I don't want to hit that", I thought, and went around the outside, only to crash in all the tangled grass, sticks and holes over there.  I've scuffed my knee and elbow up a bit, but it's not too awful.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

August 2nd

I went over to Lincoln for the EAA board meeting.  Things were discussed.

August 1st

A new month, so here are the solar stats:
Power billed

Power generated

July 31st

I took the day off so I didn't lose it because I have too much holiday accrued.  I was mostly tinkering with stuff in the garage, but I got out on the mountain bike (it doesn't seem any easier to pedal) and got some EAA stuff done.

Monday, July 31, 2017

July 30th

We went out and got things and stuff, and when we got back, I replaced the brake pads on the mountain bike.  The rear brake was still dragging a little, so I tried adjusting it.  That didn't work, so everything came apart and got cleaned and put back together with a little lithium grease, and now it's working OK.

I made up a battery mount for the plane, but didn't get around to going and installing it yet.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

July 29th

We swapped some furniture around in the house, and then I went to the airfield to look at the plane.  We ran it to get the oil injection system primed, then drained all the gas and weighed it for the weight and balance check.  It's slightly forward biased, which I think it probably mostly due to the exhaust system sitting further forward than it was with the old engine.  With fuel, it'll be OK, but I'm thinking I'll try and move the (~8lb) battery behind the seat and see if that makes it closer to perfect, rather than add weight to the tail (we reckon ~2lbs would do it).  It's a shame, as I had been thinking about getting a LiFePO4 battery for the plane when all this was done, to save ~6lbs :o)

When I got home, I took the wheels off the mountain bike, as I'd found a chunk of tread missing on the (pretty bald) rear tyre.  I swapped the front to the back, and installed an old directional front tyre.  I tear up rears, not fronts.  I found that the rear brake is sticking a bit, and I reckon new pads should help there (these are still the pads the bike came with).

In the evening, Jen came over and we barbecued for the first time this year.  Time flies when you're in a coma.

July 28th

We watched "Kong: Skull Island", which was pretty good but is obviously meant to be the setup for a new franchise.

July 27th

I was in the office today, so managed to lose $20 playing poker before riding home.

Friday, July 28, 2017

July 26th

I got up stupid early and rode to San Francisco for work.

I crashed at Dave's, so we watched dumb TV and ate pizza.

July 25th

We went to the last downtown Roseville thing of the year, just to look at the old cars and see what else was there.  We ran into Jen while looking at the old cars, but she didn't have either of hers there.

July 24th

I went over to the airfield after work and tied the plane to the van.  I then put in chocks and ran the new engine in.  For an hour.  Still, it was getting between 6200 and 6300 rpm at full throttle, so my guess at the prop pitch looks to have been pretty much spot on - there are a couple of things that need doing now (like safety wiring the prop), but it's basically ready to fly as soon as the FAA give me a new test area.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

July 23rd

I went over to the airfield to meet Ken, and we got the header tank installed, and wired in the engine.  We found one of the carbs was a little sticky, so we swapped in one of my other carbs (after swapping the jets), finding a crack in the one that came with the engine.  It's been like that for a while, as there's scuffing on the carb slide.  We got everything back together, and then started the plane.  It sort of ran, but one cylinder was running poorly.  We put the plane back in the hangar and went to lunch.  When we got back from lunch, we looked at the plug on the poor running cylinder, and it was wet, so we decided to swap this carb too, and found the choke body missing, so it's been running on full choke the whole time.  With that all sorted out, the engine ran fine.  I found it interesting how quiet it seems to be :o)

Ken left to go and do some stuff at his brother's, and I got the air filter fitted, and did some safety wiring.  I'm hoping to get back during the week and run the engine in, as that's about an hour's work.

In the evening, we watched Game of Thrones - we ended up watching it on the home theatre PC via a web browser, as the Chromecast really didn't want to play.  I've read a whole bunch of complaints about the HBO Now app via Chromecast sucking, so maybe the new router I've ordered won't help anyway :o(

July 22nd

I was on call, so I couldn't be away from the house for too long.  Vic and I went over to the airfield and got stuff done on the plane - mainly getting the coolant temperature probe all wired up and ready to go (that involves taking the whole EIS out of the instrument panel, which is as much fun as it sounds).

Friday, July 21, 2017

July 20th

- Dude, why is everybody upset that the lead singer of Limp Bizkit died?
- Not Limp Bizkit, Linkin Park
- Oh man...

I went over the the airfield and tidied up a few bits and pieces and some wiring to the new motor.  I figure there are only a couple of things to do before firing it up for the first time :o)

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

July 18th

Today I discovered that the fridge is leaking water.  I pulled it out, turned the water off then cleaned everything up.  It's amazing how much dust collects under these things.  I took the back off the fridge and cleaned out everything I could get to.  One of the water pipes was cracked about 3" from where it goes in to the valve, and luckily what was left was long enough to plug back in.  It looks like I'll end up having to tear the whole thing apart to replace the hose next time this happens, but for now we're good.

July 17th

When we were watching Game of Thrones, there was a lot of stuttering, so I spent a while getting the network to talk on 5GHz and 2.4GHz.  It should be easy, as the router / cable modem supports both bands, but not at once.  We have some older devices that require 2.4GHz, so I've set up an older 2.4GHz router to cover those.  Now (hopefully) everything should be working correctly.  We watched the Game of Thrones episode again, with no stuttering, so hopefully this is fixed, but I'm going to get a new, faster router and set the router / cable modem to just pass through.

Monday, July 17, 2017

July 16th

I went to the airfield and did some circuits until it got too busy, then put the plane away and started disconnecting the Rotax 503 engine.  Ken and Todd got back from breakfast just in time to help remove the prop (I'd loosened the bolts, but had been bothered about dropping it) and then unbolt the engine and take it off.  We then got the 582 installed on the engine mounts.  Ken modified one of the exhaust mounts and got the exhaust manifold installed while I tightened up the engine mounts.  When he went to meet his brother for lunch, I installed things and stuff, including running new wire for the coolant temperature sensor, then gave up and went home.

In the evening, we watched the series premier of Game of Thrones.

July 15th

I started the day picking Vic up from the Jeep dealer - it was in for a recall on the airbags.  This meant I didn't get to fly this morning, but we went to the airfield to drop off the new (to me) Rotax 582 engine and gubbins.  I had been hoping to fly the gyroplane with Don, but he had a lesson at Cameron Park (where he's based), so he wasn't coming over to Lincoln this weekend.

I tinkered around the house until it was time to pick up the Jeep again.  By this time, it was too hot to do anything, so I didn't.

The Raspberry Pi that I use as a DHCP / DNS server took a dump on Friday, so I played with that a bit.  I think it's the SD card, as the original 8Gb wouldn't install a new operating system, but a new 16Gb card worked just fine.  Now I just need to get around to configuring it and reconfigure the router to no longer do the DHCP stuff.

Friday, July 14, 2017

July 14th

I took the day off, due to a "use it or lose it" type of thing.  Obviously Tilly didn't let me sleep in, so I got up, got on the roof and washed the solar panels (after Jim posted about them being dirty on Facebook).  When I got down, Caroline and Kathy were coming past, and said they'd been concerned because the garage was open - well duh, I was on the roof :o)  Unfortunately, this distracted me from what I was doing, and I left the side gate open, which Tilly found shortly afterwards, and took herself on an adventure.  When I figured out the door was open, and she didn't come when I called her, I figured the dogs barking was where she was, and hopped on my bicycle to go and see.  I was on my way over when she came gamboling over from somebody's front garden, so I clipped her to the bicycle and walked home.

I had a guy come over to buy an old monitor from me, which was nice - more space, more money, what's not to like?

I got out on my bicycle, which is something I rarely do when I get a day off, then went to sell off an old graphics card.  Yay!

I even got time to get some work done on the EAA website.  I should take time off work more often.

Monday, July 10, 2017

July 9th

I got up early and went to the airfield, where it was quite windy.  I did circuits again (not wanting to be too far away when it starts warming up and it gets too bumpy), and chatted to Ken when I got back.

I put the toilet together again when I got home, and it seems to be holding fine now, so I called that done and headed out and changed the oil in the van.

I had thought about going to the airfield and flying again in the evening, but it was 105F and I couldn't face fighting with the hangar doors again in that heat.

July 8th

I started the day really early (couldn't sleep), putting the toilet back together and a little water in it to see if it was fixed.  I got yelled at for making too much noise, so I went to the airfield and did some circuits until it started to get busy, and bumpy.

When everybody else showed up at the EAA hangar, I cooked breakfasts until Bruce's presentation about flying his Bay tour.  As soon as that was over, Ken came and got me to go and fly the gyroplane with Don.  I set in the front this time, where the instruments are, and with a better seat belt that made me feel a lot more secure.

After that, I went home and checked the toilet to find it had leaked through one of the bolts that holds the tank on.  So I pulled it all apart again and silicone'd up those fittings too.  Again, it was to be left overnight to cure.

In the evening, I went back to the airfield and took the plane out for a flight, getting back not long before it got dark.

July 7th

I decided to use some silicone to seal the toilet up, but unfortunately the stuff I had in the garage was all set solid, so I had to go and get some more.  I said everything up and let it to cure overnight.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

July 4th

Today was a holiday, when Americans celebrate Brexit 1776 by going shopping.

My day started with a phone call from a customer at 07:25 because he didn't understand something he'd been told by a cow-orker.  He's in Canada, and somehow isn't aware of Independence Day, yet I'm aware of Canada Day being on the 3rd this year due to the holiday itself being on a Saturday.

I got a new flapper valve thing for the toilet, and put that all together the way the picture showed, but that caused a massive leak.  It seems there's another gasket that you need, that isn't included in the flapper valve kit.  Vic went and got one of those while I cleaned everything up and to it all apart again.  We had a couple of goes getting it all together again, but it was still leaking, so we left it.

July 3rd

Tomorrow's a holiday, so obviously the fireworks started tonight.  Tilly was all kinds of wound up by this, meaning nobody slept well.

July 2nd

I started the day at the airfield, where I took the plane out for an hour of circuits until it got too bumpy to have fun.

When I got home, I turned the water off and took the hose fitting off the bottom of the toilet, and we went out and got parts - a new tap fitting, hose to the inlet on the toilet and ballcock.  Of course, it's still filling itself from time to time, so the problem seems to be the flapper valve is leaking (as the old ballcock had been hissing on and off, I assumed it was the ballcock, but that all needed replacing anyway as the washers were disintegrating).

In the evening, I went back out to the airfield and took the plane out for a flight.  It was pretty bumpy and windy, so I didn't do much, and headed home after about an hour.

July 1st

A new month, so here are the solar stats:

Power billed

Power generated









I started the day at the airfield, where I got the plane out and then it wouldn't run properly.  Ken got back from a flight as I was tinkering with it, and we checked the floats, jets, carbs etc as it seemed to be a fuel problem.  It  didn't seem to get any better, so I decided to come back later with more tools to throw at it.

Don was coming over to give Ken lessons in the gyroplane, and Todd was having a trial lesson, so I asked if I could get a trial too... no problem.  Then Bruce showed up, and he took a trial lesson after Todd got back, then Tony showed up and he took a trial lesson when Bruce got back, and eventually I got out.  We figured I'd sit in the back seat to solve the problems with the pre-rotate and everything, but that meant I couldn't see everything and didn't have as many instruments.  It was shakier than the Flightstar, and I didn't feel comfortable with just a lap belt (I'm used to a 4 point harness), but it was fun.  It seemed we had only just taken off when we went back, 40 minutes later :o)  It's definitely something I'd be interested in, if I could afford a $85,000 plane.

At home, I tinkered around with a leaking toilet, and decided to get all the parts to fix it.  Tomorrow.

In the evening, we went out to get things and stuff, then went over to the airfield with more tools.  I wanted to try new spark plugs at the very least before going home to regroup.  The plane started just fine, and ran just fine all the way up to ~5400 (which was all I could hold it to on the brakes).  Typical.  Vic suggested I try a circuit, and it ran just fine for that.  Typical.

June 30th

Whenever I left the house today, I could smell burning wood, but I couldn't see any smoke or anything so I decided it was somebody smoking fish (it happens, as several neighbours have fishing boats).  So, we were watching TV when the fire brigade showed up - Jim pointed them around the block, as it seems our neighbours over the back had their fence on fire - Kathy was directing their hose on it, but it had been tall sheets of flame.  Obviously everybody over there was oblivious to this.

There's thinking that it's the 12v landscaping lights, but that doesn't make sense to me - they don't draw enough power to cause this, and I'd been smelling smoke all day.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

June 25th

I cleared out some work stuff, then took my desk apart and dusted everything for the first time in ages.

I then went out and looked at the air conditioning on the van again.  This time I found the disconnected wire, and the compressor now runs.  The pressure seems a little low (even with the new coolant I've added), but at least it's blowing cold air, rather than warm air now.  I've zip tied the connection so it hopefully won't drop off again, but also so it'll be obvious if it does.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

June 24th

I started the day at the airport listening to a talk from Norcal ATC - there were a bunch of things I never realised, for example that their radar is 2D, so they have no idea how high I am (like, so high, man).  I'm going to start listening in, and telling them where I am and how high I'll be so they can vector people over me, rather than around me.

While I was there, I replaced a couple of breather hoses on the plane in the hopes that they've been causing it to run a little lean, and are the cause of the high cylinder head temperatures I've been seeing.

I was on call, so I spent a fair amount of the day just playing Warcraft and responding to tickets about spam from over a week ago.  /sigh.

I had intended to fly in the evening, as it was supposed to be cooling down.  It didn't cool down, so I couldn't face going out to the airport while it was 102F, so I went out and took a look at the air conditioning on the van.  It hasn't been working, and I got some leak stopping goo for it.  The thing is, the pressure on the low pressure side is stupidly high, and the compressor isn't running.  I peered at various things and stuff, but I can't see why.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

June 20th

We watched "Logan" - it was excellent, and it's nice to see a good wrap up of a superhero story.  Of course, they'll go and reboot Wolverine with Channing Tatum or something.

Monday, June 19, 2017

June 18th

I headed to the airport stupid early again, as the forecast was for 108F.  It was again pretty windy aloft, and today there was an inversion at around 1000-1100', so it was much warmer up there than at ground level.  Luckily there were very few planes around this morning, so I didn't have to fight anybody to land on 33, the upwind runway.

Bruce and I tinkered with his iPad and the projector, but everything's working fine now.  Shame we ended up cancelling Wednesday's meeting, as it'll still be well over 100F.

I tinkered around with the plane, and talked to Jack until Mike came back from his camping trip and we could see the PT-22 he's bought.

When I got home I replaced a strap that I've used to mount the catalytic converter on the van - the old one's disappeared, and there's vibration from the catalytic converter hitting the bracket I've put back there to mount it to.  I used 2 hose clamps :o)

I spent the rest of the day playing Warcraft and hiding from the stupid heat out.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

June 17th

I got up stupid early and headed to the airfield to fly before it got hot.  It was a bit windy at height - I thought the airspeed indicator was playing up when I was seeing 33mph ground speed and 58mph airspeed.  Turning around, I saw 60mph airspeed and 85mph ground speed.  Dicking around, I got my ground speed down to 18mph at one point.  When I got back to the airfield, people were still landing on 15 despite the ~10-15mpg wind from the North, so I landed with the traffic.  While I was putting the plane away, I saw a go-around, and that seemed to break everyone of using the downwind runway, so they moved to 33.  Doy.

There had been a plan to have a Vanagon meetup at Folsom Lake, but the water level is too high (yay!), so we'd talked about meeting up at a local coffee shop.   We loaded Tilly into the van and headed over there, about an hour late.  There was nobody there, so after letting Tilly adventure around for a while, we went home.  There were a bunch of people who did the same thing, so maybe we need to organise better next time :o)

I headed back to the airport to see the end of the LRAA annual meeting, then look at Bruce's iPad displaying on the projector.  We decided that the problems he's been having are due to the Lightning to HDMI adapter, so he went and replaced that.  A text from him later said it was working with his TV just fine.

In the evening we watched "The Accountant".

June 16th

We watched "Jason Bourne".  If you're a fan of wobbli-cam and jump cuts...

Monday, June 12, 2017

June 11th

I pulled the attic fan out of the garage (as I'm not convinced it's helping any), and Vic helped me install it in the loft of the house, where the one up there had stopped working.

While I had the ladder out, I figured I'd get up on the roof and reset the weather station sender, as it's not been sensing rain recently (yeah, I know, it's June, how do I even know this?).  Last time it did that, a reset fixed it.  Then I figured I might as well clean the solar panels and the dryer vent.

In the afternoon we went to the SPCA volunteer appreciation event.

In the evening we watched "Victor Frankenstein" - it was OK, and I noticed the hat tip to "Young Frankenstein", which is still the mark to beat for Frankenstein movies.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

June 10th

I got up early and went to the airport to cook breakfasts at the Airfest event.  We eventually ran out of sausages and the pancake mix, so I'd say we were successful :o)

June 7th

I went to the EAA board meeting.  Mostly we talked about the Airfest this weekend.

June 6th

After work, I headed to the airport and took the Flightstar out for a bit.  It was pretty bumpy, so I ended up cutting my flight short and heading home.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

June 4th

I mounted the Snoopy fence painting to the wall in the hallway, and played Warcraft.  The wind was a bit blowy in the afternoon, so I gave up on flying for the weekend.

June 3rd

I started the day cooking pancakes at the airfield for the EAA first Saturday breakfast.  Afterwards, we painted some wood panels for somethingorother to do with the Airfest next weekend.  A couple of us helped Ron with getting his wheel off the Columbia, then I went home again.

After lunch, I felt a bit unwell, so I gave up on going flying.

Friday, June 2, 2017

June 1st

A new month, so here are the solar stats:

Power billed

Power generated

May 30th

We watched "A Dog's Purpose", which is a schmaltzy pupper story with a happy ending.

May 29th

Today was Memorial Day, when Americans remember their war dead by going shopping.

I pottered around the house, and made up the fence panels with the Snoopy painting.  I ended up breaking up some of the dirt along the side of the house so we can look at replanting grass seed.  I was too damn tired to do anything after that.

May 28th

I went to the airfield in the afternoon and went out for a flight again.  I had intended to weigh the plane with a view to doing a weight and balance for a possible Rotax 582, but the plane rolled off the scales, breaking them.  So I threw those in the bin and gave up - I'll look at the build manuals and see what they say about putting in a 582 on the original build.

May 27th

I tinkered around with stuff in the house for a bit in the morning, and painted up some battens to use for the old Snoopy fence painting.

In the afternoon I went to the airfield and flew for a bit before going and shooting the shit with Tony and co for a while.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

May 25th

The fence guys finished up the fence, and did the bit between us and Walter over the back while they were at it.  Yay, all done for now.

May 24th

We're getting the fence between us and Jim replaced, and after a few false starts, they arrived and started work.  Tilly was very upset about people stomping around in her garden, but calmed down a lot once she'd got to inspect their work.  She wasn't a fan of having to go out on the lead though.

I've saved the parts from the Snoopy mural that was on the fence, so I can figure out something to do with it, rotten wood and all.

Monday, May 22, 2017

May 21st

I started the day by changing the (leaking) radiator on the Jeep.  With Vic's help manhandling the thing in and out, it took me ~2.5 hours, from picking up tools to being done, including tidying everything away, and I'm calling that a success for now.  In the afternoon I went to the airfield and washed the plane, then took it for a flight.  It seemed to be running a little hot still, so I'm thinking that was down to the >90F air temperature as much as anything.

May 20th

After dinking about in Warcraft, I went to the airfield - Ken had suggested that the pitch on my prop needed changing, so I tried taking off ~1 degree.  It seemed to climb OK, but the extra RPM meant that the cylinder head temperatures got quite high, which was upsetting to have to watch.  When I got down, I set it back to where it was before.

May 18th

I'd taken the day off as a comp day, so obviously it was too windy to fly.

May 17th

It was the EAA membership meeting, so I went over to the airfield and cooked burgers, then listened to Richard Pearl talk about his crash last year (it was a cascade failure - one dumb decision after another).  Luckily, other than a scratch on his harm, he was unharmed, and hey, that's what we pay insurance for, right?

Sunday, May 14, 2017

May 14th

It looked like it was going to be bumpy, as there were cumulus clouds popping up around the place.  I pulled the front of the Jeep apart to try and find the coolant leak.  I couldn't see anything leaking out, but I'm pretty sure it is the radiator, so screw it, I'll get a new radiator and replace the replacement that we had fitted just over 2 years ago (that comes with a 2 year parts warranty).  I put everything back together so Vic can still drive out while we're waiting for the parts to come in.

In the afternoon, we went out to the airfield so I could change out a dead strobe bulb.  The plane was on the other side of the hangar, as the Mooney's gone, but at least it's still at the front :o)  Everything went swimmingly until I turned the power on, and the engine tried to start.  There was a loose wire (found the screw on the floor), so I got to deal with that too.  Anyway, strobe replaced, wire reattached (and taped up so it won't try and start the plane if it were to drop off again) and everything seems to work.

May 13th

I started the day at the airfield, where Scott gave a presentation on the scrapping of the WWII air force (there were a load of Mustangs at McClellan).  Gary said it had been very bumpy, and he flew as the sun came up, so I gave up on flying and went home and worked on the EAA web site.

Monday, May 8, 2017

May 7th

I pottered around the house until it started to cool down, then went to the airfield and went out for a flight.  It was pretty windy, but fairly constant, so not too bad.

May 6th

I got up early and headed to the airport for the EAA pancake breakfast.

We then flew out to Sutter for their open hangar day - we've decided to do some flyouts as a group this year, and 12 people in 6 aircraft went.  I flew with Ron in his Columbia 400 - it's nice to see how the other half lives.

Back at Lincoln, I installed the repaired strobe controller, only to find I have a dead bulb.  I chatted with people, heckled Steve working on the Thunder Mustang and eventually went out for a few circuits - it was getting bumpy as there was a front on the way in, so I cut that short.

Friday, May 5, 2017

May 4th

Happy Star Wars Day!

I switched the houses from trying to warm itself up to trying to cool itself down.  It's supposed to be cool over the weekend, but then it'll probably be hot until November :o)

May 3rd

I went to Lincoln for the EAA board meeting.  There's still a lot of annoying stuff going on with the city and the ground rents for the hangars, and I'm looking forward to not having to deal with this any more.  By the sound of things, there's a non-zero chance that the city will screw up the airport completely and it'll become a ghost town.

May 1st

It's a new month, so here are the solar stats:

Power billed

Power generated

April 30th

I didn't feel great today, so I just played Warcraft and caught up on TV.

April 29th

The wind was gusty, and I didn't feel like fighting with it, so I just wasted the day around the house.

Friday, April 28, 2017

April 27th

The trolley on one of the garage door openers puked out part of the plastic bushing, so I ordered a replacement (from Ebay - Sears want almost half the cost of a new door opener for just the trolley assembly).  That arrived, so I decided to install it.  My plan was to let the front of the opener down, and just take the old one off / put the new one on there, but it hit the spring that opens / closes the door.  So I took the whole damn thing down.  All told, it took me about an hour, and Vic was driving up just as I was finishing attaching everything to the door again (I thought she'd hit the button to open the door, and knock me off my ladder, but luckily she saw the lights on).

April 26th

We went and met Vince for dinner, before he heads off to Arizona.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

April 23rd

We went to IKEA in Sacramento so Vic could get some storage stuff, and stopped at Costco (I love you) on the way back.  I think I'll be living on peanuts from now until the big tub I bought is finished.

I went over to the airfield and talked to Vince about Jack's projects, then changed the front tyre before going up for a short flight.  It was warm enough to not wear a jacket, but a bit bumpy, so I ended up not staying out for very long.

April 22nd

Today was Earth Day, so Tilly and I went over to Mahaney Park to see the show.  Roseville Electric confirmed that you can't have a permit to generate more than 100% of your power usage.  We didn't hang around for long, as Tilly wasn't happy with the running fire engine and garbage truck.

I went over to the airfield and chatted with Chris about some of Jack's junk^H^H^H^Hproject aircraft.  I reckon the Flighstar that was never finished would do him just fine.  I tidied up a bit of the wiring for the strobe controller (that I've taken off for the moment), then took the plane out for a bunch of circuits.

Friday, April 21, 2017

April 19th

I went over to the airport for the EAA meeting about instrument approaches.  They're very complicated :o)

April 16th

The forecast was for rain, but the Warcraft servers were down, so Tilly and I went over to the airfield and reinstalled the compass, and took the strobe controller (that's stopped working) off the plane.

Shortly after lunch, it started raining, but the Warcraft servers were back up, so it wasn't an awful day.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

April 15th

We started the day with Vic renting a carpet cleaner while I put the family room rug out on the patio, and then we spent a few hours washing it to try and get the fish emulsion smell out.  We seem to have been pretty successful.

In the afternoon, I went to the airfield with a couple of things to look at.  I took the compass out to try and refill it, but couldn't get the cap off, so I went for a bunch of circuits (almost 2 hours!) and took the compass home.  I managed to get the cap off and fill it most of the way.

April 14th

The rear brake pads needed changing on the Jeep - the fronts don't look too bad at all.  The pads arrived, so I got those installed in the evening (it doesn't get dark until 19:30 or so).

April 9th

The weather wasn't too bad, but I just didn't feel great, so I wasted the day playing on the computer.

April 8th

It was raining on and off, so I just played Warcraft.

One of us ate a load of fish emulsion that was being used in the garden, and then threw it up on the rug in the family room, so I spent a fair amount of the day trying to get that cleaned out.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

April 5th

I called Roseville Electric about putting more solar panels on the roof, for a possible electric car.  I'm not allowed to generate more power than I've used in the previous year, so basically I'd have to get the car, use the electrickery, then after a year I could look at putting up enough panels to generate more power.

Right now I think I'm ~500W of panels from breaking even, so basically it isn't going to happen until after I maybe get an electric car.

In the evening, I went to Lincoln for the EAA Board meeting.  Fun times.

April 4th

I got out on the pushbike at lunchtime, and I've figured out a new route... it's about 11.5 miles, and there are bits I can add in if I want to go a little further.

I had intended to go flying in the evening, but there was a wall of dark cloud approaching Lincoln, so I gave up on that idea.

April 2nd

Another windy day, so I stayed home and played Warcraft.

April 1st

A new month, so here are the stats:

Power billed

Power generated









I started the day at the airfield cooking breakfast at the EAA hangar.  It looked like the wind was going to pick up so I scratched any idea of flying, and went and did stuff around the house.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

March 29th

We went over to Vic's storage unit to hand over some stuff to Gwen and Walter for their garage sales to fund a swing set for the kids.  After that, we went to dinner :o)

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

March 28th

I managed to get out on my bicycle for the first time this year.  A lot of the trails I use have been buggered up by the rain over the last few months, so I'm going to have to work out new routes.

In the evening, I went over to the Chevy dealer to see the orange Bolt in normal sunlight (it was overcast on Sunday when we looked at it).  No, still copper.

I got called for work in the evening, and spent hours working on a problem until I could pass it off to the Europeans to look at.  I need a vacation.

March 26th

We went and did some running around, and ended up at the Chevrolet dealer so I could see the Bolt in orange.  It looks copper, so meh.  We had a long chat with a sales dude (who admitted he didn't know much about the car, which was refreshing).  I got to show Vic the view from above thing on the Premium model, and she really liked it.  We're negotiating, as the Jeep is coming up on 7 years old now :o)

March 25th

Vince came over so I could pay him for the annual on the plane, and give him a toy Mini, and we spent a few hours putting the world to rights.  You're welcome.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

March 19th

We pottered around doing nothing much, as I was still pretty tired from yesterday being a long assed day.

March 18th

I flew to Salt Lake City, then on to Sacramento.  SLC is actually pretty efficient as a first port into the US, at least a lot faster than Los Angeles.  Tilly kind of remembered me.

March 17th

We went to the Retreat, at the end of Mum and Dad's road, where we ran into Vince while we were waiting for Caroline, Rom and Juno the dog to arrive.

Friday, March 17, 2017

March 16th

I met Jason, Fiona and Rob for dinner in Staines.

March 15th

I took the train in to Wokingham to see Phil and Andy, a couple of guys I used to work with at HP, and Samsung in Andy's case.

March 14th

I had been aiming to see Terry, Vince and Emma, but her mum was sick, so i just had a quiet night.

March 13th

We went and had dinner with Barry and Veronica, who I haven't seen for years.

Monday, March 13, 2017

March 12th

We went down to Sussex to see an aunt I haven't seen for over 20 years.

March 10th

Sue was supposed to be coming down, but didn't.  I went and met Jason and Laura.  Eventually.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

March 8th

I met Jason for dinner. When I got home, I got to try and help Caroline get her new printer working.  Over Facebook messenger. I think we were successful.

March 7th

We went to the chippie :o)

March 6th

We rewired one of Dad's storage heaters, as the switch had failed.  In the evening, I went out to dinner with Emma.

March 5th

I arrived in the UK, and spent the day eating bacon sandwiches and drinking Lift.

Saturday, March 4, 2017

March 4th

I started the day at the airfield, cooking breakfasts.

Then I went and caught a plane to Salt Lake City, where I sat next to a very entertaining drunk girl, and on to Heathrow, where I had a row to myself :o)

March 1st

A new month, so here are the solar stats:
Power billed

Power generated









In the evening, I went to the EAA board meeting.  We had it at a restaurant in Lincoln, rather than the usual pizza place, as the pizza place is shutting down :o(

Monday, February 27, 2017

February 25th

We (including Tilly) went to Sacramento for a van meetup.  Tilly was wiped out by the time we came home :o)

February 20th

Today was President's Day, when Americans celebrate George Washington's birthday by going shopping.

It was wet and blowy, so I celebrated George Washington's birthday by playing Warcraft.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

February 18th

The weather's pretty crappy, so all I achieved today was posting my state taxes (I submitted the Federal stuff online).

February 15th

The last tax form was posted, so I got my taxes finished.  Thanks to the £'s drop in value due to the Brexit, I'll be getting a refund from the Feds and the state this year :o)

February 12th

I spent the day farting around on the computer, then went flying, where I flew over the Feather Rive to see how the flooding looks at the moment.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

February 11th

The highlight of my day was changing the oil in the Jeep - I did some other minor tweaks while I was looking at it.

In the evening, we watched "Sully" - an entertaining enough film, but massively inaccurate about the role of the NTSB.

Friday, February 10, 2017

February 10th

I took the van over for a wheel alignment.  It was steering to the right, and the tyres were making scuffing noises, so I'm glad the road was wet, and it's only a few miles to the alignment place.  It took an hour or so, and everything's great now.

February 9th

I went out into the garage, mounted the speed cable to the dust cover, and installed that on the van.  Then I bled up the brake caliper on that side (all the brake fluid had run out of the open line), and reinstalled the wheel.  Then I put all the tools away and took the van off the axle stand for the first time in weeks and weeks.  I took the van out for a short drive, and it seemed OK, with a little scrubbing on the tyres.  I've made an appointment for a wheel alignment :o)

February 8th

When Vic had left for work (so I had the space), I went out and mounted the hub, disc and caliper to the van.  Sadly, the mount for the brake line wouldn't mount like it had on the old upper ball joint, so I had to wait for Vic to get home to help me take the ball joint mounting bolt off and put the brake line bracket underneath it, then put it all back on again.  We then struggled, and eventually managed, to get the brake line connected to the caliper.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

February 7th

Once it had warmed up a little, I went out into the garage and tidied up the spindle, masked it off and threw some Rustoleum paint on it. While waiting for that to dry, I turned down an old bearing race and used it as a drift to mount the races in the hub.  Then I went inside and watched a movie while killing time.  I went back out, and mounted the lower ball joint on the ball joint adapter, but I didn't think that the ball joint would rotate on itself - luckily there's an 11mm straight edge so you can hold the ball joint still while tightening it up.  I found the tie rod end and the upper ball joint had a 5mm Allen fitting, and got the tie rod done, but not the upper ball joint as I just couldn't get everything to line up.  I greased up the bearings and put them in the hub, then waited for Vic to get home so I could get a hand to mount the upper ball joint.  Progress is being made :o)

February 6th

I've taken the week off to stop me capping out my holiday.

I checked The Green Button forum, and people are starting to see guide data appear in Windows Media Center.  I started an update, and lo and behold, it worked.  I like it when I don't really have to do anything :o)

I ran Vic to work in the rainstorm so I'd have the use of the Jeep, and she wouldn't get soaked riding in.

Tony has a hydraulic press, so I went over to press out the ball joint I need to replace on the spindle for the van.  It's tricky to get the thing all lined up, so he ended up just hitting everything with a large lump hammer to get it all apart, and tapping the new ball joint in with a drift made from a piece of steel tube.  Hey, it works :o)

I was almost on the freeway when he called to say his lunch appointment had cancelled, so I turned around and headed back.  We picked up Bruce and went to lunch.

At home, I got the ball joint adapter back on the van, and put the new bearings in the freezer to make them easier to fit.

I even remembered to pick Vic up from work :o)

We watched "Seventh Son" in the evening.

February 5th

The weather sucked, and I'm out of things I can do on the van for the moment, so I pretty much wasted the day.

There's been a problem with the Windows Media Center guide download for the last few week, and I've been following progress on The Green Button forum.  It's funny that the first few pages are people talking about the problem, workarounds, what they've done, then there are 10 pages of people saying "me too" and whining about Microsoft when if they'd read the whole thread, they'd have seen it's a Rovi problem that's affecting Microsoft.  They've just noticed because WMC popped up and told them they only had 3 days of guide data left.  Anyway, here's hoping they get it fixed before it runs out on Tuesday so I don't have to spend Tuesday figuring out EPG123.

In the evening, we watched "The Huntsman: Winter'sWar".

February 4th

I started the day at the airport cooking breakfasts - the weather was crappy, but Tim's Carbon Cub was out of the hangar for maintenance, so we didn't have to feel bad about it sitting in the rain.

We ran about picking stuff up and running errands.  We stopped by the Chevy dealer, as their website shows that they have an orange Bolt, but they don't have an orange Bolt.

I picked up a ball joint splitter, and found that it wasn't big enough to fit the ball joint I wanted to split with it, so I went and swapped it for a pickle fork - a split wedge chisel, basically.  We used that and broke one ball joint on the van out, but I couldn't get it to work on the other one I wanted to split.  Oh well.

Friday, February 3, 2017

February 2nd

I got Vic's taxes all ready to go.  I'm still waiting for stuff so I can do mine, and it looks like that'll be another couple of weeks.  FML.

February 1st

A new month, so here are the stats:
Power billed

Power generated








In the evening, I went to the EAA board meeting.  Looks like we'll need to find another place for these, as Pizza Round-Up's probably closing soon.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

January 31st

I've been sent a VOIP phone for work, so I've got that set up using ethernet over powerline to my desk, then power over ethernet into the phone.  I don't know why, but that makes me smile, as it's totally stupidly overcomplicated.  They don't seem to have WiFi phones, or I'd have tried for one of those.

January 30th

A guy on the Faceberk Van page was looking for a zip for the tent, so I cut up the old tent that I'd managed to tear a hole in, and sent the front panel to him.  Hopefully he'll get that by the middle of the week, as I dropped it off at a post box to go tomorrow.

I went to the airfield, did some circuits, went away for a bit, came back and did a couple more circuits then parked the plane for the day.  I'm thinking I need to replace the front tyre soon, but I want to get the van fixed first - I hate having more than one thing broken at any one time.

January 28th

The replacement spindle for the van came in during the week, with a lot of unnecessary crap on it, so I spent some time taking that apart.  Sadly the ball joints are ruined, so I'll have to get somebody to press those out and press new ones in.  Oh well.

As the weather was nice, I went out to the airfield and went out for a look around.  It wasn't too cold, but I was wearing my ski pants :o)  The fields are flooded for the birds to nest, and there are a lot of birds about.  Usually I'm a ways above them, but there was one long chain of birds that caused me to climb above them (while staying under the Beale controlled airspace step).

Monday, January 23, 2017

January 22nd

It was another crappy day (good for ducks, as they say), so I stayed in and played Warcraft.

January 21st

The weather station has been reading low on rainfall.  I thought it had stopped working when it was reading 0 during a rainstorm, but there look to be bug fixes for this behaviour.  Applying the new firmware reset the whole bloody thing, meaning I got to go through all the setup process again.  Anyway, it's done now, so let's see how it does going forward.

I went out to get some stuff, and ended up at the Chevy dealer and test driving a Bolt.  It's smaller than I'd thought, but it drives like a normal car.  The heater seems to knock off a fair bit of mileage though - I think we drove maybe 10 miles, and took over 20 miles off the range.  They're going to call me when they get an orange one in, so I can go and see the colour :o)

I tried heating up the brake hub of the van to get the bearing race out, and it wasn't budging.  It looks fine, so I think I'll probably just leave it in there now.  I just have to wait for the replacement spindle to get here, and that seems like it's taking forever.

Friday, January 20, 2017

January 18th

I went to the EAA membership meeting, where we had a talk about Billy Mitchell, the father of the USAF.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

January 16th

Today was Martin Luther King day, when Americans celebrate a civil rights pioneer by going shopping.

In the afternoon, I took the Jeep over to Lincoln and took the plane up for some circuits.  There was a helicopter in the pattern, and then a bunch of people started coming back from wherever they'd gone, so I gave up a little early and went home so Vic could use the car to go to the vet.

In the evening, Valerie came up from Monterrey to crash with us so she can go and argue with the contractor's board in Sacramento in the morning.

January 15th

Lincoln was listed as marginal VFR, so I spent the day playing Warcraft and watching TV, including the awful Point Break remake.  The photography was awesome, the script... not.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

January 14th

After it had warmed up a little, we went out into the garage and managed to get the remaining bearings out of the wheel hub, and get the spindle off the van.  The ball joints are still attached, as getting them off will destroy them, and I'm currently figuring I'll end up replacing them anyway.  Once I get the new spindle, I can figure out what needs to be replaced, based on what comes with it.

January 13th

I decided to make a start on the hub for the Van... based on how the inner bearing races were welded to the spindle, I've been putting this off, but the first (and failed) one came off without too much argument, so I'm hoping that's a good sign.  We went out to get dinner to celebrate :o)

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

January 8th

It rained again, so I spent the day tinkering with the computer and playing Warcraft.

I did get out and look at the van, and undid a bunch of bolts that are going to have to come out to swap the spindle.  The bad news is that I'll have to replace the tie rod end on that side, too, as supposedly you can take the castellated nut off, turn it over, put it back on and then hammer the thing out.  All I managed to do is bugger up the threads, so yay.  Still, it shouldn't be too bad to change, and I was figuring on needing a wheel alignment anyway.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

January 7th

We're supposed to be having a biblical flood and storms this weekend, so we've cancelled the pancake breakfast at the airport.  I stayed in and played Warcraft most of the day, but we did go and try to cut the bearing race off the front wheel spindle on the van... no dice.  I cut a slot in it, and we hammered a chisel into that, but it never cracked off.  I've given up for now, and started hunting down a used spindle to just replace it.  I'm going to see if the bearings will come out of the hub, and maybe I'll get to replace that, too.

January 4th

I borrowed the Jeep and went to the EAA board meeting.  It sounds like we're going to get Brian Shul for our March meeting :o)

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

January 3rd

Back to work.  Joy.

It's been bothering me that the HTPC doesn't drive the TV down to black, as the new TV is capable of displaying total black, rather than gray.  I found that the NVidia graphics card sees a monitor on HDMI, and ass-u-mes it's an LCD TV, so goes into "limited RGB", rather than full RGB mode.  That was just a tweak in the NVidia control panel (after updating it to get that to work) and now I'm getting proper black.  Now I'll have to recalibrate the TV...

I managed to get the hub off the front wheel spindle on the van, but I have a feeling that the bearing race is pretty much welded on now.  We'll see.

January 2nd

It's still cold and wet, so I played Warcraft, but I did get some more of the bearing race cut away on the van, as it looks like it's going to be hard to find a new setup (I have a line on one, but the guy doesn't want to pull the parts just yet, as it's immovable then - I did offer to send him my old, broken parts to help).  That went swimmingly until the Dremel failed, so in the evening when we went out to get something to eat, I got a new one.

January 1st

It's a new month (and year), so here are the power stats.


Power billed

Power generated









I spent most of the day playing Warcraft, but I did get out and start cutting away the bearing race on the van.  Well, until it got cold and I got bored of it, anyway.