Saturday, August 1, 2015

Saturday Already?

Sheesh.......time sure flies when you:

A) Don't Know What You're Doing

B) Are Having "Fun"

C) Are "retired".

Seems like I have less free time now than when I was working!

Or maybe it's just the backlog of projects I'd been saving "For When I Retire" that are finally getting my attention.

Writing up a PowerPoint (Libre Office "Presentation", actually) presentation to give to the Iowa staff on RF safety.

The speaker last month at the "other" radio club was a former SoCal Edison guru on RF Exposure, and he's offered his services to us.

So, while we've made the required calculations, he has the proper, calibrated test equipment to actually measure the RF field strength at various distances from our antennas, and tell us how well we meet the requirements.

One thing I deliberately did when I ran the calculations was to completely ignore any feedline loss, and used 100 Watts "at the antenna" to generate the results, giving us "Worst Case" results.

I keep pushing to actually measure the power at the antenna feed point, but nobody else seems interested. It's starting to look like another "Let Jim Do It" project, but knowing the guys, as soon as I drag in the gear and announce what I'm doing, several people will tag along to observe and help.

And I'm cleaning out the garage AGAIN. Seems like "stuff" just condense out of thin air to fill up garages in SoCal, especially when there's NO CAR in there!

My son is bringing over his pressure washer today so I can finally get all the grease/dirt/oil/crud off the bottom of the Supra under the engine bay so I can swap out the power steering hoses and get it smogged. The last time I took it in the refused to smog it, saying the high-pressure line to the power steering rack was leaking, and "Spraying fluid all over the place", making it unsafe to work on while the engine was running.

I looked under the hood, and while I could find a few drops of power steering fluid, no way was it "Spraying all over the place". I understand their concern, though. A long time ago I had a second generation Celica that had a cracked exhaust manifold, a common problem. Being extremely low on $$ at the time, I just let it go. I'd only paid $500 for the car, the crack happened right after I had it smogged to transfer the title, and it wasn't that loud.

WELL......the exhaust leak was pointed right at the high-pressure power steering hose, and one day when I was coming down the street, about a block away from my little bachelor pad, the hot gas finally burned through the hose.

Ever see hot hydraulic fluid under high pressure hit a flame?

Yep, it went BOOM, fire and smoke belched out from under the car, and one of my neighbors who happened to be walking down the street at the time said it looked like something out of a movie. There wasn't enough air under the hood to keep the fire burning, and it was low on fluid, so at least the car didn't burn to the ground.

So while I was upset that they greatly exaggerated the leak the Supra has, I can see why the mechanic was hesitant to work on it.

Oh, well.....

Time to go out and get greasy. Hopefully the power washer and the stuff I vought at Home Depot will get the car clean on the bottom.

I just hate working on crummy, greasy, grime-covered cars! It slows you down, and is a PITA......


  1. And by power washing it, you're going to find all those 'other' little leaks... Standby... :-(

  2. The bottom of the car is rock solid, no leaks there.

    We were going along great until the pump seals blew out, and that put a stop to all the "fun" pretty quick.

    SO....I ordered my own pressure washer from Amazon. It was $50 less than the Big Box stores, and had Free Shipping since my wife is a Prime member.

  3. It's way too hot to work on the car during the day. I think that sometime around twilight you could bang out an hour or two...maybe it's just my lazy streak.

    1. No, I'd call it a "practical" streak.

      Between the high humidity we've been having here, and all the water we were blasting around, we were soaked about 15 minutes after we started.

      We'd go in the house to cool off since the wife turned on the A/C for us, and then back out to work another 20~30 minutes.

      The time between work periods was also to allow the degreaser(s) we were using some soak-in/dissolve time.

      I'll do another post later today with some pix. The Toyota guys are after me to post some pix, so I'll put the front of the car up and get the Nikon ready.

  4. Gotta learn to say NO! It's because you have free time the bloodsuckers dive in to snatch it.

    1. Oh, I say "NO!" a lot more now than I did a year ago!

      I learned my lesson with the "other" radio club I refer to occasionally.

      I wound up doing everything last year, and I finally snapped.

      I don't mind doing things on the Iowa because it's truly appreciated, there are people willing to help if I just ask, and I can see a "greater good" to this activity than I could at the other club.


Keep it civil, please....

Kludge or Clever?.....<i><b>You Decide!</i></b>

 SOOO....after I unsoldered the leads connected to the photocells, as directed to in the manual, I was able to get the photoresistors for th...