Category: hobby

Replacing the 4 Wire Phone Plug for a Smartphone Headset: Hints and Tips

Replacement 3.5mm 4 connector headphone jack, varnish, shrink wrap, new jack completed, Photo 05 by Don Tai.

Replacement 3.5mm 4 connector headphone jack, varnish, shrink wrap, new jack completed, Photo 05 by Don Tai.

After many years of careful use, the headset that came with a long gone Blackberry smartphone lost sound in the right ear. If I wiggled it “just so” the sound would reappear, but with any further movement the sound would again be gone. It was clear that the wire would need to be cut back and the 3.5mm phone plug would need to be replaced. Because I do like the feel and the quality of the headset and mic, this was worthwhile to repair.

Proofing Box: Home Made DIY options

After doing many versions of focaccia, bagels, pretzels and sourdough bread, it was obvious that during the rising period, or proofing, that temperature control is critical. We were using a stainless steel bowl, a pyrex plate as a cover and an incandescent lamp to raise the temperature. This made our proofing take many hours. For sourdough, even 6 hours was not enough.

Many DIY options exist. This is not complex. You need a heat source, humidity, an enclosed box and maybe a fan. It is also nice to see the dough rise.

Nutribullet NB101-B: Cleaning and Internal Review

Nutribullet NB101B was non-functional. A cleaning of the actuator switches fixed it. Three drainage holes were unclogged. Now it works.

Nutribullet NB101B was non-functional. A cleaning of the actuator switches fixed it. Three drainage holes were unclogged. Now it works.

A friend gave me his Nutribullet NB101-B, a small blender used for smoothies. The blender was non-functional but intact. He said that the blender was well used, but started acting intermittently, after which it stopped working. There are many youtube vids on cleaning the blender, and the cleaning did fix the problem. There are, of course, extra details that I discovered.

Sheffield, England: Mapping Exercise

I’ve not been here, but a friend is here. I hope my greetings and good wishes will find her and that she is well. Sometimes the journey is difficult. you get stuck in a downdraft and for all your effort, there’s nothing you can do but get sucked down. There is a lot of luck in life, and at times your luck might run down. Friends can help you, if you have then and they can find you.

GPS: 53.378760, -1.480519
Plus Code: 9C5W9GH9+GR
UK, Sheffield, 17 Cavendish St

UK, Sheffield, 17 Cavendish St, Map by Google

UK, Sheffield, 17 Cavendish St, Map by Google

Royal 1212x Paper Shredder: Forensic Analysis

Royal 1212x paper shredder, shredded the teeth on a plastic gear, rendering it inoperable junk. Bought from Costco.

Royal 1212x paper shredder, shredded the teeth on a plastic gear, rendering it inoperable junk. Bought from Costco.

Friend David brought me his broken Royal 1212x paper shredder. The motor runs but the shredding teeth no longer turn. He bought it from Costco for about $100. As with other “Made in China” shredders I’ve taken apart, I suspected a plastic gear broke. In this case the plastic gear slowly shredded its internal teeth, leaving the shredder motionless, useless and broken. This shredder is still available on Amazon and other places, so it is still for sale. I suspect that other shredders from the same brand have the same internal components.

China Shandong Province, Yantai City, Qingnian Jiayuan; Virtual Tour

It is not as nice as actually being there, but when you’re stuck in Toronto it continues to be interesting. It is a lot faster.

Today I’m going to Shandong Province, Yantai City. It’s a coastal town about the size of Toronto’s 4M people. In China that’s a 3d tier city, barely big enough to warrant note on China’s large single page map. The place I’m going to is somewhat near Ludong University, about 1.5km away.

Shandong Province, Yantai City, Ludong University, Qingnian Jiayuan 山东省,烟台市,鲁东大学,青年家园。

GPS: 37.533098, 121.366479
Plus Code: 8Q93G9M8+5J

Shandong Province, Yantai City, Ludong University, from Baidu Maps

Shandong Province, Yantai City, Ludong University, from Baidu Maps

Seam Grip Sealer and Adhesive: Usage Tips

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Seam Grip Sealer and Adhesive, McNett, instructions are not good but it does eventually seal.

Seam Grip Sealer and Adhesive, McNett, instructions are not good but it does eventually seal.

I bought this from a local MEC store (new packaging, same product name) here in Toronto for a seam repair on two Goretex jackets, where the seam tape’s adhesive had failed and the seam tape was hanging loose. After reading the instructions it was clear that they were not very good.

Sweden’s Greta Thunberg Chastises Adults for their Climate Change Failure

She’s 16 and very cute, though she has a temper. In fact, she is correct. The adults of the world are ruining the environment, and her generation and beyond will need to repair it. While the outcomes are irrefutable the contributing issues are complex. While there is no excuse for wrecking the environment, there are reasons why adults are not more proactive.

People need jobs or they cannot live. Many of these jobs involve natural resources. Canada, for example, has oil in the ground that has been traditionally extracted and sold to customers around the world. If we stop the burning of oil completely, these jobs will disappear and people’s lives and families will be destroyed. While this can change, in the long run, we have no mechanism to do this yet.

Book Review: Bully of Asia: Why China’s Dream is the New Threat to World Order

Stephen Mosher, Bully of Asia: Why China’s Dream is the New Threat to World Order
2017
This book provides a historical perspective to try to explain China’s current hostile behaviour to the US, ASEAN and the world.

Intro
-While other conquerors allowed subjects independence, China rules with dominance in all aspects of life, using the mandate of heaven
-China looking to dominate the world in order to bring harmony, peace
-US idealists: work with China, find common ground, find a mutually beneficial solution
-US offensive realists: world is a perpetual competition, China wants to dominate
-China are offensive realists, for a very long time, always perpetual war, which is why they want to dominate SCS, the world
-China need for domination deeply rooted in history
-in order to maintain order, China uses nationalism, patriotism

Vintage Canadian Bicycle: Nice Lines, Dubious Quality

Vintage Canadian looper bike, no brand nor model, est circa 1950s. Photo by Don Tai

Vintage Canadian looper bike, no brand nor model, est circa 1950s. Photo by Don Tai

A neighbour here in Canada gave me this bicycle. She had started riding this when she was 8 years old, and the bicycle was well used and handed down at that time, so this bicycle could be over 70 years old.

This bicycle is a “loop bike”, for its classic swooping top bar, single speed with a coaster hub, a reverse pedal brake. The bike runs on 800c, 28×1.5″ tires. Vintage it is, with a slew of problems. Overall I do like the look, but the ride is pretty bad and somewhat scary. For cruising around in a flat are this might be Ok.