Thursday, March 21, 2019

March 21st

Well, the Jeep's gone.  Paul texted me and said they wanted to surprise their daughter (who the car's for), so they were going to pretend they were coming to me to pick up a car part.  They knocked on the door, Tilly barked, I said "let me come out, so she doesn't bother everybody" and we wandered out to the drive, where the Jeep was parked.  I opened the garage door, and pointed at the pile o' stuff from the Jeep, and Paul asked his daughter what she thought of the Jeep.  She said it was cool, so I gave her the keys and said "here, have it".  She was like "whatever" until they said it was hers, at which point she pretty much collapsed on the floor :o)  She and her mother drove of in it, and Paul and I did the paperwork, then he left to join them at lunch.  Yay.

March 20th

I agreed the sale of the Jeep - basically they're buying it as a gift for their daughter, so they want us to hang on to it until the weekend.  Sure, we can do that.

March 19th

I got up early and advertised the Jeep.  I started getting interest almost immediately, which is a good sign :o)

In the evening we finished tidying it up, and took all our stuff out of it.

March 18th

We spent some time cleaning the Jeep up and getting it ready to sell.  Yes, it's been almost 9 years, so it's time for something more practical :o)

Sunday, March 17, 2019

March 17th

Chris and I were going to meet up at Auburn to run down the canyon, and video ourselves doing it.  I left early, and he was running late, so I flew over towards Folsom Lake and up the river to approach Auburn from the South for once.  Of course, the wind was blowing from the east, so I couldn't do a 45 join, and had to do an overhead join, just in front of Chris.  We compared notes, started cameras and headed out - it's the first time I've taken off on 07 - usually we're on 25 by the time we get around to leaving.  We ran down the canyon and a good time was had by all - my video is here.

As I approached Lincoln, there was a Rans Coyote behind me, and I figured he'd be going faster than me in the circuit, so I slowed right down and let him pass, then toddled on.  I was on finals and offered to let Andy get out in front of me, but he said he wanted to watch me land.  No pressure then :o)

When I got home, Vic and I went out to lunch, and she suggested going to the Chevy dealer so she could see just how f*ck off bright lime green "Shock" is on the Bolt.  They didn't have one on the lot, but offered to drive over to their storage lot and get one - we went along for the ride and Vic drove it back.  We then asked for the numbers, and spent a couple of hours dealing with their nonsense before I gave up and said it wasn't going to work out.  I fully expect a phone call in the week.

March 16th

I'd agreed to meet Chris and Randy at Auburn airport for lunch, but I wanted to dink about on the way.  Of course, you talk to one person and then another, and then another, and you end up rushing to just get there on time.  After lunch we ran down the canyon to Lincoln, as Chris wanted to talk to Ken, who'd already left.  Oh well.

The window winder thing broke again on the van on the way home, so I think I'll need to find a stock VW regulator to replace the aftermarket one.  In the meantime, I might convert it back to a manual window.

Monday, March 11, 2019

March 10th

Vic and I went over to the airfield and took the plane out to shoot some video - the image stabilisation works excellently.  I took off on the same runway as everybody else, despite the ~8mph tailwind, and listened to the people in the pattern finally sorting out using the correct runway.  We flew up the canyon (a bit higher than usual because it was blowy), turning back when I started to see water on the windscreen.  There was a point where I'd throttled back, put the nose down to the point where we were doing 80mph, and we were still getting sucked up at 600' a minute, so we headed back to Lincoln.

March 9th

I went over to the airport and sanded down the epoxy I'd put on the nick in my propeller.  I then noticed how bad previous repairs were, but I think I'll ignore those for the moment.  I made sure the new mount was going to work for the GoPro, stuck it on the mast and went over to the EAA hangar and cooked lunch for about 30 people.  As it was alternatively raining and blowing a gale, and I was on call, I went home and played Warcraft.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

March 3rd

It's still crappy weather, so I played a bunch of Warcraft, then went to the airport and put some goo on a nick in the prop - once it's dried, I'll sand it smooth again and look at putting some prop tape on it to hopefully protect it from small nicks in the future.

I was working in the afternoon, so I... worked.

March 2nd

I went to the airport and cooked breakfast for 20 or so of my closest friends.  It was throwing it down with rain on and off, so I wasn't going to be able to fly, and the van was blocked in, so I stayed and heckled the Board meeting.

March 1st

A new month, so here are the power stats - all the rain recently hasn't helped any.


Power billed
Power generated

Thursday, February 28, 2019

February 27th

My new GoPro arrived, and I quickly found out that 4K video takes a lot of space - ~2Gb for 5 minutes of Tilly running around.  Also, I'll need a bigger computer and newer software to really edit it (the GoPro Quik stuff... isn't good).  I ended up downshifting everything to 1080p so I could throw together this.  Of course, the weather's going to suck this weekend so I doubt I'll be able to do any shooting from the plane to see if it fixes the vibration problem.

Monday, February 25, 2019

February 24th

The weather wasn't as nice as I'd hoped, so I decided to stay in and fix things around the house.  I also installed a smart garage door opener controller, so I can now open the garage door with my phone.  The controller supports IFTTT, so I'll have to look into that at some point.

In the evening, we watched "Bohemian Rhapsody".

Sunday, February 24, 2019

February 23rd

We went to Costco to buy cheese and Dr Pepper.  After that, I went to the airport and took the plane out for a while - I played with the calibration of the instruments a little, as they seem to be overreading.  After landing, I did a little maintenance, then headed home.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

February 18th

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

Of course, the weather sucked so I couldn't fly, so I wasted the day.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

February 16th

It was  on and off windy, cloudy and sunny, so I gave up on flying (plus I was on call) and worked on some updates to the EAA website.  I also went out and looked at the window regulator on the van.  I took the door apart so I could get the regulator out, then took that apart.  I think the problem was that it was assembled dry, so I put a load of white lithium grease in it and put in all back together.  It seems to work better, so let's hope it's fixed.  If I'd known what I know now, I'd have used the new regulator to rebuild the original Volkswagen one.

February 13th

I've been playing with cameras on the gyroplane, but vibration makes video unusable :o(  I've been looking at getting a new, image stabilised camera (we bought the Contours for hang gliding, after all, and they work great for that), and noticed that GoPro are doing $50 off the new Hero Black 7.  With a free hat and memory card.  Sold.  Wait a minute, they have a trade in program, where I can send them one of the old, broken cameras I have lying around, and they give me $100 off the list price, so I'd be paying $50 for a 64Gb card and a hat.  I've decided to go that way, and pay $25 for a 128Gb card and live without the hat.  I'm looking forward to seeing how it works out on the gyro.  And to getting the Contour mount off the mast.

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

February 10th

The window in the van stuck again, so I think I might have to take the regulator out and figure out what's going on there.

Vic and I flew to Auburn to meet Chris (who flew in from Cameron Park), Jack and Marianne (who drove) for lunch.

February 9th

I ended up at the airport, cooking burgers for the EAA.  Despite the rain, there were a load of people there.

February 8th

It was a grim looking day, so I stayed in and played Warcraft.

Friday, February 8, 2019

February 7th

I went to the airport and took the plane out for a bit.  I had been intending to do circuits for a while, but there was a helicopter practicing auto-rotation emergencies, so I left him to it.  I figure he's paying something like $450 an hour, I'm just dicking about.  I did think of telling him he needs a gyroplane, as that's always auto-rotating :o)  After over an hour, when I practiced turns and stuff, I headed back.  I was doing an overhead join, looking out for Jamie in her gyro who'd called a 45 degree join, only to find her about a mile North of the runway, where she called an extended base entry.  OK, I powered up and flew over her, then did a long final approach.  She said she was having trouble spotting the airport, so ended up further North than she thought she was.

Thursday, February 7, 2019

February 6th

I got up early and headed to the airport to fly to San Carlos with Bruce and George, so we could practice our radio work into controlled airspace.  When we got back, everybody had stuff to do, so I took the plane out for an hour or so of just playing around.  Randy landed shortly before I took off, and when I got back I found out he'd just finished his cross country, so all he has left to do is the flying test :o)


February 5th

I spent the afternoon looking at the cumulus clouds and deciding not to fly.

February 4th

I've taken the week off, so obviously the weather sucked today.  I stayed in and played Warcraft and caught up on TV.

Monday, February 4, 2019

February 3rd

It was another awful weather day, so I spent some time on the EAA website and a Powerpoint presentation for BRuce.  I also swapped out the Sony radio in the Jeep for the original one, as we're talking about replacing the Jeep and want to get it back to stock.

February 2nd

I started the day at the airport cooking breakfast - the weather was terrible, but we had a load of people show up, including a new guy who brought his grandson.  He wanted to see the gyroplane, so I took him over to the hangar and showed them.

I spent some time talking to Bruce about controlled airspace radio work, in preparation for a (hopeful) trip to San Carlos.

Friday, February 1, 2019

February 1st

A new month, so here are the stats:

Power billed
Power generated

In the evening, Jen came over so I could look at her computer, then we went out and got something to eat.

January 31st

When we got back from bURNING vAN, the driver's side electric window crapped out.  I took the door apart, and it was one of the little plastic gears in the window mechanism.  I dug around, and found that the electric window manufacturer makes a fitting kit with the part I needed.  Yay!  They no longer make them.  Boo!  I spent a while checking with everybody who has them listed on their website, and finally found somebody with the fitting kit in stock.  So I ordered 2 of them (that's 4 replacement gears - surely enough to tide me over).  Today, they showed up, and I got the door apart again and installed it.  Everything once again works as it should.

Monday, January 28, 2019

January 27th

I met Chris and Randy at the airport, where we flew Randy's kids up to Auburn for breakfast.  It was decided that we'd go straight there, but come back down the canyon when it was hopefully warmer.  It was also decided that I'd lead, so I headed out, constantly updating them on where I was.  I turned left and ran down the canyon with the occasional ADS-B hit from somebody in front of me.  It was them - Randy had followed the wrong river, so got to Camp Far West Lake before me.  Oh well, it just meant we landed last, rather than first :o)

January 26th

I got up and headed to the airport.  A couple of the guys were talking about going to Petaluma for lunch, but the forecast had said it was going to be misty there, so I'd been toying with flying with John in his Citabria.  The AWOS at Petaluma said the weather was just fine there, so I bundled up and took my plane - it took about an hour and ten minutes, with a bit of a tailwind.  When we were joining the pattern, there was a guy who joined just after me in a (much faster) Cardinal, but he let me go in front of him to land, rather than me extend out to Seattle so as to not clog up the pattern.

Coming back, there was a headwind, so it took an hour and a half or so, but we landed with lots of daylight left.  Enough that I flew over to Marysville to do a quick touch and go with Randy.


Tuesday, January 22, 2019

January 21st

Today was Martin Luther King Jr Day, when Americans celebrate the civil rights pioneer by going shopping.

I had the day off, and it was a nice day, so I went to the airfield.  Chris was coming over from Cameron Park to see Ken, and we were going to lunch, so I got there a bit early thinking I'd fly before he got there.  I ended up a bit later than I'd hoped, so I was taxying out as he approached.  I did a couple of circuits, then toddled over to see the guys.  Chris was leaving his gyro for Ken to replace an EGT probe, so he jumped in the back with me and we flew to Auburn with Randy to meet Tony and Stacey for lunch.  When we got back to Lincoln, we puttered about talking Randy through planning a cross country, then we all headed home.

Monday, January 21, 2019

January 20th

Yesterday was beautiful, so we went to the coast, but today was cold, wet and windy, so we stayed in.

January 19th

We all went to Ocean Beach for bURNING vAN 2019.  Tilly was so tired heading out to come home that she had to be helped into the van :o)  Just as we got home, there was an awful noise when I tried to wind the driver's side window down, so I'm hoping that's not me needing to replace the window regulator again :o(

January 18th

Due to working the Australian shift, today was my Saturday, so I had the day off.  Of course, it was rainy and windy so I couldn't fly, so I spent the day playing Warcraft.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

January 13th

We met up at the airport early - Randy and I, and Chris came over from Cameron Park.  For want of anything else to do, we went for a flight over my newly discovered canyon.  Randy's allowed to solo, but not land elsewhere yet, so we headed back to Lincoln, where it was decided that Randy would ride with Chris up to Auburn for lunch.  Just after we'd landed, a couple came over and said "weren't there three of you?" - it seems we'd flown over their house earlier :o)  After lunch (in our flight suits, as we were on the patio in the cold wind), we headed back to Lincoln so I could drop the gyro off and head home to start work.  I left Randy and Chris heading out to get gas, so for all I know they're still flying :o)

January 12th

Randy wanted to go flying, so we met at the airport early, got the gyros out and went along the canyon I flew yesterday.  After an hour, we landed and I went to cook burgers for the EAA barbecue.  Chris came over from Cameron Park, but too late for lunch.  We sat on the EAA board meeting until he had to head back, then after the meeting was over, I went and "helped" John with the wiring in his RV6A.

January 11th

Today was my Saturday, as I had to work on Sunday covering Australia.  So, after playing Warcraft for a while, I went to the airport and took the plane out for a flight.  I ran up a canyon from Camp Far West Lake reservoir towards Auburn, over Lake of the Pines and home again, and it was an interesting flight.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

January 6th

It was another cold and wet day, so I started out playing Warcraft until I started work (I'm covering Australia for the next 2 weeks).

January 5th

I got up early and went and cooked breakfast for about 20 of my closest friends.  Despite the awful weather, a fair number of people showed up.

I changed out a dried out fuel vent line on the gyroplane, then went home.  We went over to Cycle Gear to look for some boots and a jacket for Vic, and other than that, stayed in out of the wind and rain.

In the evening, we watched "The Predator".  It mentions the earlier movies, but I think it would have been cute to see a cameo by one of the stars of the original.

January 4th

Jen came over for me to look at her new laptop - basically get the backup stuff set up, and figure out what we need to put a hard drive in it (it has an SSD, and a slot for a hard drive) - it needs a disc tray.

We went out and got dinner while it was backing up :o)

Thursday, January 3, 2019

January 2nd

We watched the Tom Cruise "The Mummy".  Well, that's a comic universe that isn't going to happen.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

January 1st

A whole new year, so here are the stats:

Power billed

Power generated










I met Chris and Randy at Lincoln, where we tightened up Chris' parking brake cable, then we headed out.  Randy decided to go with Chris, as it was pretty windy - gusting 20mph.  When I pulled the rotor back to get the wind through it, I actually started going backwards, so I had to push it forward a bit to get enough ground and rotor speed to take off.  We flew to Nevada County, where it was a lot warmer, and not at all windy.  There was nothing going on there, other than a guy who's at Lincoln a lot pottering around in his RV-6A.  We didn't even get out, and headed off to Auburn, hoping to get lunch there.  We detoured on the way and played around over the Rollins Reservoir for a bit.  When we got to Auburn, the cafe was shut, so we decided to just go back to Lincoln and go to Subway.  At Lincoln, we fixed a broken bracket on Chris' plane, washed out his air filter and left it out to dry, then went to lunch.  When Chris and I got back to the airport, we oiled and installed his air filter, then he headed back to Cameron Park, and I headed home.

December 30th

I went to the airport and took the plane out for a bit.  It was a lot hazier than yesterday, so I didn't go anywhere, I just pottered around.  When I got back, I did a couple of small wiring tasks on the plane, mostly getting the ADS-B receiver moved to the front, thus freeing up a 12v socket for Vic's heated gloves if necessary.