Monday, September 18, 2017
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
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
Tuesday, September 5, 2017
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.
Sunday, September 3, 2017
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.
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)
Thursday, August 31, 2017
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.
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
It was 109F, so I gave up on flying again - it's supposed to cool down a little tomorrow.
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.
Friday, August 25, 2017
Sunday, August 20, 2017
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
Tuesday, August 15, 2017
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
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
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
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
Thursday, August 10, 2017
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(
Wednesday, August 9, 2017
I spent some time working on stuff for the EAA, and then I updated the operating handbook for the plane.
Thursday, August 3, 2017
Monday, July 31, 2017
I made up a battery mount for the plane, but didn't get around to going and installing it yet.
Sunday, July 30, 2017
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.
Friday, July 28, 2017
Sunday, July 23, 2017
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(
Friday, July 21, 2017
- 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
Monday, July 17, 2017
In the evening, we watched the series premier of Game of Thrones.
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
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
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.
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.
Tuesday, July 4, 2017
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.
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.
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.
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
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
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
Monday, June 19, 2017
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
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".
Monday, June 12, 2017
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
Sunday, June 4, 2017
After lunch, I felt a bit unwell, so I gave up on going flying.
Friday, June 2, 2017
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.
Saturday, May 27, 2017
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
Sunday, May 14, 2017
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
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
Friday, April 28, 2017
Sunday, April 23, 2017
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.
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
Shortly after lunch, it started raining, but the Warcraft servers were back up, so it wasn't an awful day.
Sunday, April 16, 2017
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.
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
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.
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.
Thursday, March 30, 2017
Wednesday, March 29, 2017
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.
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Friday, March 17, 2017
Monday, March 13, 2017
Thursday, March 9, 2017
Saturday, March 4, 2017
Monday, February 27, 2017
Sunday, February 19, 2017
Sunday, February 12, 2017
Friday, February 10, 2017
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
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.
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".
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
Tuesday, January 31, 2017
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
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
Tuesday, January 17, 2017
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.
Saturday, January 14, 2017
Tuesday, January 10, 2017
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
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.
Tuesday, January 3, 2017
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.