Category: hobby

Old tech Triumph Bicycle: Bottom bracket bearings replacement

My bicycle is from the 1970s, and is quite old. It even has a label that says “Made in Canada”, it is that old. Triumph brand. Yet its steel frame, heavy but strong, lives on. I make it live with maintenance. As with most of my bicycles, this one was used and abused by a Chinese neighbour, and then left for dead, rusted and in terrible shape. I took pity on it.

Imperial 535 Sewing Machine Pedal: Opening it up

Imperial 535 sewing machine pedal. Some springs had come loose, but after replacement did not sew any better. Photo 2 by Don Tai

Imperial 535 sewing machine pedal. Some springs had come loose, but after replacement did not sew any better. Photo 2 by Don Tai

I thought that my Imperial 535 sewing machine pedal was a bit too sensitive, so today I opened it up. The bottom cover simply slides off, but is really tight. I had to use a screwdriver to pry it open a bit.

Inside there are no parts that I could see that required repair, only a bit of dust. Two springs were loose inside, so I put them back in place. The pedal works as it did before, so no improvement in function. The four rubber feet have long disintegrated. I could drill out the rivets and replace them, but would not improve the functionality of the machine.

Trigger, Willie Nelson’s Martin Guitar

Willie Nelson's Martin guitar, Trigger

Willie Nelson’s Martin guitar, Trigger

I do love this story, of a guitar that is so special, that has stood the test of time through maintenance and a bit of luck. Willie Nelson is not gentle with this guitar, Trigger. A testament to quality build.

It has been beaten up, but also maintained, and used to full capacity. The new sound hole might even enhance its sound. What more can a player ask from an instrument? This really goes against the glitz and glamour of the shiny new toys that you can buy off the shelf and throw away once you’re tired of it.

Grain Process Enterprises, Toronto: I bought Dark Rye Flour

Dark rye flour, 10kg bag, from Grain Process Enterprises, Toronto, $12.50. Underwhelming store, but adequate.

Dark rye flour, 10kg bag, from Grain Process Enterprises, Toronto, $12.50. Underwhelming store, but adequate.

I have been baking bread for a good 9 months now, using white wheat flour and whole grain wheat. While it is nice, I’ve gotten tired of it. Many European people seem to really like rye in their breads. I do like rye bread as well, which has a very different taste. I searched for a source of rye here in Toronto, and found Grain Process Enterprises in Scarborough.

How to Add A New Emoji to QQ

Chocolate emoji: I could not find an appropriate chocolate emoji for QQ, so I shrunk a larger image down to 32x32 saved in png format, transparent background, and imported it into QQ. Original large image.

Chocolate emoji: I could not find an appropriate chocolate emoji for QQ, so I shrunk a larger image down to 32×32 saved in png format, transparent background, and imported it into QQ. Original large image.

I’m on QQ, Chinese social media and messenger, and wanted a different emoji that I could not find. Here’s how I added one.

You’ll need to edit your original graphic. The file format size is 32×32. Save your file in .png so you can have a transparent background. You can reduce the size of the image of your choice, but the simpler the better, as at 32 x 32 px almost all details will be lost. I have sized existing QQ emojis and they are 28x28px or smaller. This is a more appropriate size.

Gift Economics vs Scarcity Economics

During this pandemic it is clear that this CoVid-19 virus has crystalized that we have those with a lot and many more without, who are forced by circumstance to serve others. Those without also overwhelmingly get sick and die more often than those with. The disparity between the rich and poor is ever widening, which degrades out society.

Bucket Head Wet/Dry Vacuum: Tear Apart and Inspection

Bucket Head Wet/Dry Vacuum, disassembly and quality inspection

Bucket Head Wet/Dry Vacuum, disassembly and quality inspection

Thrown to the curb, this was, with its tail cut off. So sad, I had to take it home, give it a try and possibly a second life. This unit pleaded underdog, discarded and forlorn. Unremarkable in appearance, ’tis a vacuum, for sure, but where is the bottom? The Bucket Head wet/dry vacuum is meant to couple and sit on top of the standard inexpensive Home Depot 19L 5G bucket, sold separately. It just clips onto the top of the bucket, hence the name “Bucket Head”. The vac head even has slots for the bucket’s wire handle!

Imperial Sewing Machine Model 835: Photos and User Manual

Imperial sewing machine model 835 in blue, front view. Photo 1 by StaceyM.

Imperial sewing machine model 835 in blue, front view. Photo 1 by StaceyM.

Lovely, really! StaceyM has a really lovely blue and white Imperial sewing machine Model 835. His Mom bought it in 1965 at the downtown Montreal Simpsons. He inherited it in his teens and has been sewing ever since! What a great story!

The Imperial model 835 has a side mounted thread tensioner, allowing a slimmer and seemingly simpler needle area. The large stitch length knob is easy to see and adjust, with a huge reverse button in the middle. This is very convenient. Two buttons on the right side of the machine allow for a lighter pressure foot for delicate materials, as well as no pressure when you wish to do darning (both use the left button). The rightmost button is for regular sewing with a regular pressure foot.

Motorola Droid Razr XT912: Death of Tech Device

The Motorola Droid Razr XT912 seems like a nice enough smartphone. Small, slim, with a carbon fiber back. Friend David bought it from, I think Canada Computers, refurbed. After using it for a while the battery life was reduced, then he used it as an MP3 player. In the end I received it and used it as a desk clock. Finally, it would no longer reboot, seemingly in a boot loop.

City of Toronto Gym Opening: L’Amoreaux Community Center

It has been 5 months since I was able to work out at my community center gym. Today 2020 Aug 17 the Toronto public gyms reopened, but with significant changes. Overall I felt that the City of Toronto did a really good job in infection control and cleanliness, considering pandemic circumstances.

Though I have been strength training at home, I don’t have the weights required to get a good pump and build strength, so it has only been maintenance. Working out at home, which will continue (I will explain) is a bit boring and at times very difficult for motivation. Still, when you have no other options a home workout must do.