Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Plants prepped for a cold snap...

My big oldest living tomato plant sprung back to life after I thought it had been killed in the last freeze. Fired up my spare "MrHeater" to hopefully keep the plants cozy.  30,35,32, .05,B

Monday, January 30, 2023

First rain?

Good chance of some road wrecking weather coming up.  Been seeing a lot of daily traffic lately.  Wondering how many of them are aware of what happens when it rains out here.  Any bets on how many vehicles will get stuck?  45,65,48,0,B

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Saturday, January 28, 2023



Friday, January 27, 2023

motor madness...

Hooking up and synchronizing a second stepper off a single ESP8266 microcontroller went surprisingly well.  Still ran into a few idiosyncrasies that made no sense - but found work arounds.  50,64,24,0,B

Thursday, January 26, 2023

stepper motor hell...

Fought with this all day and finally figured out (I think...) how to get it to cooperate with the micro controller and software.  Pretty frustrating when you try sample code exactly - and things don't work.  Tomorrow I try to get a second motor running off the same controller and coordinate their movement.  47,54,33,0,B 

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

another clock kit from China

You can buy one here.

Tuesday, January 24, 2023

#2 out in the world

They sure grow fast!  The brother (or sister) that came to visit is just a month older than the new baby.  45,54,38,0,W

Monday, January 23, 2023

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Ponder this...

  Proverbs 4:26  

Ponder the path of thy feet 

and let all thy ways be established.

Saturday, January 21, 2023

Friday, January 20, 2023

Thursday, January 19, 2023

Arduino world...

Sucess at programming and firing up this little self-setting digital date and time clock using an ESP8266 Node MCU with an SSD1306 OLED display module.  Once plugged into 5VDC, this wifi enabled microcontroller goes online automatically and gets the correct time and date from a network time protocol (NTP) server.  I had to change a few lines of code from a sample I downloaded in order to get it to work. 58,67,27,0,C

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

Old art

Light fixture I built 25 years ago from parts I found in a great junk yard in Connecticut.  Back in my "arty-farty days" in NYC, I must have ventured there about 10 times.  Plugged it in and it still works.  After all these years I'm going to repurpose this for a clock project I have in mind.  53,65,40,0,W

Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Monday, January 16, 2023

quick turnaround...

Spotted some new action in the nest at 4 AM yesterday. The momma dug it up and was in there for a while. After she came out, she spent a lot of time grooming herself "down there". She came back this morning for what I assume is the first feeding. It will be about 2 weeks before whatever is in the nest is big enough to be spotted on camera. Wondering if there is more than just one in this litter. 65,76,47,0,B

Sunday, January 15, 2023

in and out...

Mark 7:15  There is nothing from without a man, that entering into him can defile him: but the things which come out of him, those are they that defile the man.  

Saturday, January 14, 2023

The program...

I have always considered computer programming to be way out of my wheelhouse.  I seem to have quite a blind spot when it comes to any kind of programming language.  A while back I ordered some inexpensive microcontrollers to try with my rover project but found I didn't need them right away.  I thought I had lost them when I cleaned up a couple of weeks ago but now they are found.  While doing what seems to be my daily clock search on the internet, I came across a lot of digital clock tutorials and have been binge watching them for 2 weeks.  This morning I tried my hand at the Arduino IDE [Integrated Development Environment - software for building applications that combines common developer tools into a single graphical user interface (GUI)] and was magically able to get an ESP8266 Node MCU to run a sample "blink led" program and after I made some changes to the code - it ran that too.  What I have discovered is that it may actually be doable for me to make some interesting things with these as there is so much info available online...especially YouTube.  Now that I got my feet wet, I ordered some more controllers, OLED displays, and stepper motors to experiment with for some new clock projects.  To get an idea what I mean by inexpensive - that order (5 controllers, 5 screens, 5 stepper motors) was $46 on Amazon.  If I didn't mind waiting a month, I could have ordered them all from China for about 25 bucks.  For scale, the board I fired up is about 1" x 2" - the boards and OLEDs I just ordered are about 1.25" x 1.25" and the stepper motors are 1" in diameter.  67,75,30,0,C

Friday, January 13, 2023

Thursday, January 12, 2023

Wednesday, January 11, 2023


Very nice animated digital clock screensaver available by download for $9.99. This gives me some ideas for another clock build. Thinking about collecting parts for such an elaborate project, I really miss the Canal Street of the 80's in NYC - especially Canal Surplus, Canal Metals, and Canal Plastics. Back then I could source all kinds of obscure sculptural elements from there and I used to venture down to lower Manhattan every Saturday just for inspiration. You can get this screensaver here.

Tuesday, January 10, 2023

tank trick...

Simple way to stop water from shooting out of a tank while replacing a faulty valve. A "ball" of plastic bags blocks the outlet as the water pressure presses against it. When the old valve is removed, the remaining water in the outlet pipe pours out and is replaced with air. You can hear that air bubble up in the tank and see the stick move when I place the new valve in the outlet pipe. 74,80,34,0,C

Monday, January 9, 2023

Livin' the life...

This little rabbit has more than tripled in size in just 2 weeks and is certainly living a life of privilege - born in the greenhouse completely protected from any predators and in a burrow made out of food. Spoiled by living in a literal "all you can eat and drink buffet", it should be noted that in the wild desert cottontails rarely drink, and free water does not appear to be a requirement for either their survival or reproduction. They are drawn to moist areas because of succulent vegetation and morning dew, but in the desert without any rain for months at a time (or a provided water bowl), they are sustained simply by whatever moisture content is in the vegetation they eat. 69,78,37,0,B

Sunday, January 8, 2023

Stumbling block

Romans 14:12 So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God. 13 Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother's way.  

Saturday, January 7, 2023

State of the Water Supply...

As of today, I have 17,625 gallons on tap.

Friday, January 6, 2023

last clock kit

You can order one here.

Thursday, January 5, 2023

Dome Clock

  Had this clock idea in mind for a couple of years.  
Recently found the parts for it so built a prototype.

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

All plugged in...

Got all of my new "plug in" clock kits fired up. Didn't bother trying to get them all synced up perfectly. Impulse buy of the year was the Divoom Pixoo64 pixel art display - showing my YouTube stats (with 4096 leds). I have a smart plug coming next week so I can have Alexa turn the lighted ones off at night. Also rigged up and hung a cheap display case for some of my favorite pocket watches. I always keep one clock set on Daylight Saving Time year-round. 61,71,34,0,B

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Late Christmas

My Christmas orders finally arrived.  Gonna crack them open tomorrow.

Monday, January 2, 2023



Sunday, January 1, 2023

Happy New Year

First clock kit of the year. This one went together pretty quickly - but I had to go over all my soldering a second time before it worked correctly. You can buy this kit here. 71,80,38,0,C