Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Underwriters Laboratories

Did another Alpine run this morning in preparation for a weekend rain event.  Got home in plenty of time to rig up the pump in the shower and do a quick test.  Worked as predicted...perfect flow - perfect temperature.  Can you spot the potential code violation?  Yes...I will address that issue.  59,65,34,0,C

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Fluid Dynamics

Turns out my low psi on-demand hot water heater is just on the cusp of getting a little too little pressure from the gravity feed on my solar shower tank.  The flow is minimal and the water actually gets too hot even on the low setting.  Although I had already done some research on the matter I thought I would try hosing in two lines from the tank for a little real world experiment that ended up proving the theory.  Thanks to the laws of physics regarding the conservation of energy, and some guy named Daniel Bernoulli - it didn't work.  (I won't hold a grudge against him though because the Bernoulli principle can also be used to calculate the lift force of my paramotor wing.)  As I suspected, doubling the feed in did not double the pressure or increase the flow.  Looks like I will have to add a pump to the mix after all.  Just so happens I have one that I used years ago for a misting system experiment in the greenhouse.  (Note: the inner tube leak on the trike tire is definitely repaired now.)  62,71,37,0,B

Monday, November 28, 2016

patch job...

Somehow I have made this far in life without ever having patched an inner tube.  Today I finally got my chance.  Noticed this morning that one of the trike tires was low.  Two days ago I noticed this stickery branch barely stuck in the tire.  Found the tiny hole by submerging the tube in a bucket of water.  We'll see if the patch holds by tomorrow.  Note to self: add some tire repair gear to the flight kit.  64,73,53,0,B

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Psalm 55

22 Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee...

Saturday, November 26, 2016

flight worthy...?

Waiting on a few more parts arriving next week before testing begins.  62,72,49,0,C

Friday, November 25, 2016

Burro Friday

Decided to put off all ground testing till after the holiday weekend...just in case.  Definitely not a good time to have an emergency.  I seem to have developed a new respect for caution.  To err on the side of caution is to use or show more of it than may be needed so that you can be sure that you are using or showing enough of it.  In the meantime - here are some burros.  57,61,52, .01",B    

Thursday, November 24, 2016

thanksgiving day..

Been a busy two days.  1. Got all the redundant axle ends finished. 2. Got the paramotor firmly attached to the cart. 3. Broke the pull rope on my generator - replaced it. 4. Rigged a makeshift seat so I and do some ground testing - still haven't decided on how to do the final seat rig yet so I will see if anything else breaks before I commit.

Was just about ready to fire up the machine for a ground test when I decided that Thanksgiving Day is not a good day to get hurt so I will wait til tomorrow.  Looking forward to an extravagant seasonal meal tonight.  Happy Thanksgiving!  67,78,52,0,B

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

i'm ending the vlog

Yes...that was a clickbait title - for my blog.  YouTube personality  Casey Neistat announced on Saturday that he was ending his daily vlog.  With only a few missed days, Casey was able to post a well produced and interesting daily video log on YouTube for over a year and a half.  Needless to say, some of his 5.8 million subscribers are a little disappointed.  Since 2010, he has uploaded over 730 "films" to his YouTube channel with over 1.3 billion views.  By comparison, I have uploaded 99 videos to my meager YouTube channel with 799 subscribers and just over 1,000,000 views.

His signature style - bold opening title graphics, time lapses, drone footage, perfectly matched soundtrack, a frantic daily schedule, and roaming around on an electric skateboard have been emulated by any number of other YouTubers hoping that "the Neistat formula" will work for them.  Even the camera gear he uses is being copied.  As someone familiar with film production, when I watch his videos I see things others might not when following his daily escapades.  Although it may appear seamless, all I can think of is how much work goes in to setting up each "shot".  When I first began my blog, planning the day and the photos was rather daunting but nothing compared to what Casey has accomplished.  Like him - I have a formula that has become second nature (but a lot less work).

All that being marks my 3,000th post and over 3,000,000 visits to my blog in a little over 8 years.  I'm not ending the blog.  61,75,44,0,B

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

wire lock pins...

Got all my wire lock pins in place.  These are typical of PPG trikes to make it quick and easy to break down the machine and/or easily replace a broken axle.  The tricky part was getting the front end square with the rear end since nothing is perfectly flat and level out here.  Used the "straighten tool" in my photo editing software to figure out what I needed to do to line it all up.  69,73,51,0,B 

Monday, November 21, 2016

Sunday, November 20, 2016

when your heart is in the right place...

Colossians 3

23 And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men;
24 Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.
25 But he that doeth wrong shall receive for the wrong which he hath done: and there is no respect of persons.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

a sucker for some BBQ

Got suckered into another BBQ sandwich down south today.  Randy posted a picture of the special today (the Queso Grande) and I made the mistake of being hungry when I saw it on Facebook.

This is going to be difficult to understand unless you know a bit about paramotors.  Got the foot pegs tacked in place then figured out the height for a seat support on the trike today.  The harness is actually its' own seat but it needs to rest on a small platform built into the trike when on the ground (the cinder blocks are only there to get the right distance above the trike frame - I won't be flying with them).  To get a better idea of what I am talking about, I have added a photo of a simple trike that has the seat support.  BTW - the simple trike from Skycruiser is $1,000 with shipping - I have spent $450 on my DIY project.  Once in the air, the harness raises a couple of inches off the support when everything is suspended from the wing.  I may end up going with a different harness.  The one I have is separate from the motor and you put it on first then put the motor on your back with its' carry straps (like putting on a backpack).  If this doesn't work out for me, the other harness permanently attaches to the motor frame and might make things a little easier.  I am waiting to see how it goes with what I got before I plunk down $750 for a new harness.  55,67,42,0,B   

Friday, November 18, 2016

ground crew...

Had some help from the ground crew today.  Cut up some more bits for the frame...stops for the cage and a little reinforcement for the fork.  I think I did my best weld of the project today (now that it is almost finished).  59,69,47,0,B

Thursday, November 17, 2016

frame mounts...

Got the frame mounts mounted today.  I think it is about time to clean up the work bench.

In other news...the road crew was out today and repaired McKenna Gulch.  Unfortunately, the root cause of the problem still exists.  70,83,57,0,B

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

getting my bearings...

Was figuring out the front wheel mount and found a potential problem.  Decided the inner shaft collars against the wheel were a bad idea (in case they come loose) and making a couple of bearings to keep the wheel centered in the fork would be a good idea.  (I call them bearings but they are really spacers since they don't need to turn - but bearings works better for the title of the blog.)  My method for getting a nice square cut by hand instead of my chop saw is to wrap the piece squarely with paper cut to the appropriate width and mark it with a Sharpe - the paper edge gives me a nice sharp line to follow.  I cut them a tad long and ground them down till they were just hair tight.  Finished all the welds that were only tacked together and the front fork is done. 70,83,43,0,B 

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

new postcard

Decided it was time for a new Field Lab postcard.  I really liked the "Ben in the fog" images so I spent the morning getting the file ready to upload to VistaPrint.  Took a couple of hours because I had to find the original large files then doctor and crop them to get what I was looking for.

Cut apart the errant axle ends and made the adjustment.  67,80,43,0,C

Monday, November 14, 2016

fork on...


Sunday, November 13, 2016


A lot of Christians are sharing stories from religious leaders and how they believe Donald Trump has been sent by God to save the nation.  It is very dangerous to trust any politician...and even more dangerous to trust the words of mortal men proclaiming prophecy.

2 Peter 2

But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.
And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.
And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not.