Friday, 18 November 2016

08:08 – Barbara just left to drive over to West Jefferson, where she’ll spend the day with Frances, Al, and their friend Marcy. It’ll be wild women and parties for Colin and me today.

Barbara and I drove over to Blue Ridge Co-op around lunchtime yesterday and signed up to have a propane tank installed. Lowes is supposed to deliver our gas cooktop on, bizarrely enough, Thanksgiving Day, so we told Blue Ridge Co-op to schedule installation of the propane tank for the first week of December.

We opted for a 250-gallon tank rather than the 120-gallon tank. The 250-gallon is the largest they’re allowed to install above-ground, and we didn’t want to get involved with the cost and hassles of a buried tank. The 250-gallon tank holds about 230 gallons when full. That should last three or four years if we use it only for cooking, even if we’re cooking for more than just the two of us. They’ll also install a quick-disconnect fitting at the back door, which we can hook up to our generator if necessary. Propane costs about three times as much as electricity per BTU, but that’s not a major concern if we’re using the propane only for cooking or in an emergency for electric power.

The gas cooktop we ordered comes standard with a propane adapter kit. It has an electric igniter, but specifically says in the specs that it can be ignited manually if the power is down.

Email from Cassie, who’s been reading what I posted recently about canning. She’s never pressure-canned anything, but they have only the small freezer in their refrigerator and she’d like to can meats that she buys on sale, particularly dark-meat chicken and bacon, as well as game that her husband brings home from hunting. But the thought of botulism scares her to death, and rightly so. She has no canning equipment or supplies, and asked me what I thought about it.

I told her that I’m no expert on pressure canning. The few times I did it I was helping someone else who was an experienced canner, and the last time I even watched was 40 years ago. That said, I told her that credible authorities, including the USDA and Ball, say that canning meats is safe if one follows directions exactly, but that just to be extra safe one should always cook canned meats thoroughly before eating them.

I suggested that she carefully consider the costs of commercially-canned meats versus DIY pressure-canned meats. She’ll need a canner. All American canners are the top of the line, but they cost $225 to $300+ depending on capacity. The 23-quart Presto canner I bought costs under $80, and does the job just as well as the more expensive canner. I suggested she also pick up a set of canning tools and a copy of Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving.

She’ll also need canning jars, lids, and bands. I suggested Walmart as a good source for those. She needs to decide between quart jars, which hold about two pounds of meat, versus pint jars, which hold about one pound. The trade-off is that the jars cost about the same for either size, but that with just the two of them she may not want to have her meat stored two pounds per jar with no easy way to preserve it after opening a jar other perhaps than maintaining a constantly-simmering pot of pottage. If she does opt for pint jars, I recommended that she buy a second canning rack so that she can process twice as many jars per run. It also wouldn’t be a bad idea to buy spares for the gasket, pressure gauge, and pressure valve.


63 thoughts on “Friday, 18 November 2016”

  1. Canned chicken tastes good, as does canned tuna. Canned red meat generally all has the same flavor and it’s not a great one. Everything tastes like Dinty Moore beef stew for some reason.

    FWIW there is a lot of discussion of canning meat, esp hamburger at www the survivalist blog net. (all one word with leading and trailing dots)

    I like pouches for meat, particularly the shredded beef and meatballs from Rip n Ready.

    https://www.amazon.com/Rip-Ready-Shredded-Beef-Broth/dp/B00M33Z76E

    I buy them off the shelf at my local grocery in the ethnic food and prepared meals aisle.

    I like their taco meat too.

    Pouches have some advantages for me, in that they don’t rust, but they are harder to stack and less sturdy. The better taste is a MAJOR plus.

    nick

    added- I’ve been looking for alternative canned meats since 1999. Sweet Sue offers canned whole chickens in some areas. Beanless chili can be a good start. I also have imported from Holland canned hot dogs for the kids. I have several flavors of seasoned meat (pork and beef) in pouches (mexican/hispanic style) from the supermarket. Canned hams filled a shelf at one point. The quality varies, but they are edible and a nice change from chicken. SPAM type canned meats are widely available and prized in some cultures. I find them salty and not so appealing. However, my local asian grocery stocks over 20 different flavors and brands so there must be SOME that I would like….

  2. Ruh-roh. Barbara is pretty accepting of my activities, but we now have twenty five-pound bags of macaroni sitting on the dining room table, and another 20 bags still sitting in their shipping boxes. She stood looking at the pile, and her only comment was, “Think ya got enough pasta there, Butch?”

    Fortunately, I don’t think she remembered that we have another 300 pounds of pasta already in LTS.

  3. @Nick

    That link you posted has one review, at one star. Also, paying more than $16/pound for shredded beef sounds excessive. Either the canned Costco roast beef or the Keystone beef chunks are much, much cheaper, and in my opinion taste just fine. And the Keystone ground beef tastes pretty much like any ground beef.

  4. Urk. I just opened the shipping boxes. There’s not twenty five-pound bags of macaroni in there. There’s thirty bags.

  5. On home canning, I’d recommend digging around at Backwoods Home magazine for Jackie Clay’s stuff; she’s apparently done a LOT of canning over DECADES and I’ve read the questions people have for her and she would appear to be the resident expert on it.

    http://www.backwoodshome.com/blogs/JackieClay/

  6. @RBT, only linked to provide a picture and brand, I buy it off the shelf for about $2/pouch IIRC. I think there is only one review due to the price being so much higher at amazon than elsewhere. Guy claims it made him sick, and maybe it did, but JEEZ, if it did, he should do more than just post a review! If it was REALLY contaminated, hundreds of tons need to be recalled before someone gets seriously injured. I can’t take a review like that seriously.

    My kids ASK for the meatballs….

    n

  7. Yeah, I never buy anything from Amazon now unless I’ve verified that the price is competitive. It often isn’t, sometimes by a multiple of literally five times or more.

  8. Ebay is headed the same way. There are a whole bunch of sellers who buy at retail and then resell on ebay. If you don’t have a dollar store in your area this might be a service, but it’s a great way to spend more than needed if you just assume ebay prices are good.

    I had this happen yesterday. I was looking for repair parts for some gooseneck lights for my radio rack. They were available on ebay, and thru dealers, but the prices seemed way high. Went to the manf. direct sales site, and they had the parts for 1/2 to 1/3 what the other online sellers were charging. And they had a flat $3 shipping option. I used paypal to buy them and they’ll be here in a day or two.

    It’s easy to price shop now, and there are lots of reputable sources online, outside of ebay and amazon.

    In fact I’ll argue that Amazon’s fairly recent development of allowing grey market, second sources to fulfill regular orders is DECREASING their value proposition. I don’t mind getting NOS, or an item that is shipping from some picker in OK City, if it’s priced accordingly and fully disclosed. What I don’t want is paying for something and thinking it’s factory new, and straight from the factory or distributor, when it’s not.

    nick

  9. Absolutely. On-line resellers are trying to maximize profits, which is extremely difficult to do.

    Walmart does this even more ineptly than Amazon. I ordered twenty 5-pound bags of macaroni from them a couple weeks ago, at $4.48/bag, or about $0.90/lb. That was a decent price. A week or so ago, I intended to order a second twenty bags when I noticed that they’d reduced the price from $4.48/bag to $3.17/bag ($0.634/lb.). So I ordered thirty bags instead of twenty. When I checked yesterday, their price was back up to $4.48/bag. Still, I ended up with 250 pounds of macaroni for $184.70, or a weighted average of $0.74/lb.

    And Walmart really, really needs to hire some fulfillment experts from Amazon. Those 50 bags of pasta arrived in at least eight separate shipments, ranging from one box that had only one bag in it to another box that had a dozen bags in it. Walmart wastes a lot of money on unnecessary extra shipments.

  10. Are the separate shipments from different locations? Odds are their system is picking from various locations that have the stock.

  11. I was looking for repair parts for some gooseneck lights for my radio rack

    I need new fill valves for my washer as the current valves are leaking into the washer. A couple of days after the last wash I find water in the bottom of the wash tub. Went to the Sears site as they always have the parts. I found the part easily enough. Sears has excellent diagrams and part searching. The part was $70 plus tax plus shipping. So I took the part number to a local appliance shop. They offered the same part for $66 plus tax, no shipping. Part has to be ordered but will arrive a day before the Sears part will arrive. Chap said they normally stock in a closer warehouse but the warehouse allows a part to run out before they reorder.

  12. “Are the separate shipments from different locations? Odds are their system is picking from various locations that have the stock.”

    Yep, that’s exactly the problem. IIUC, Walmart uses tiered warehouses, with a few large, central warehouses that serve only other warehouses, and many smaller warehouses, each of which serves 100 or more nearby stores. Granted, a customer order for 20 and 30 bags of macaroni is probably relatively uncommon, but at most it should have taken two shipments, one from the nearest regular warehouse and, if they ran out, one from a large central warehouse.

  13. May have something to do with optimizing shipments. I am certain that Walmart probably packs large containers for a regional destination. Perhaps part of your order was used to fill the remaining space in one container thus requiring another box for another container.

    When I was dealing with Unisys the technicians that did the servicing would get packages via Fed-Ex every day. One time they got an envelope with a single small washer. Unisys’ contract with Fed-Ex was so large it was cheaper to send Fed-Ex than by mail. Unisys would pack large Fed-Ex containers that fit in planes with each container for a region. Thus Fed-Ex did not have to handle any of the packages in the container until they got to the region, perhaps even city. Unisys probably paid by the pound and adding a single lightweight package might have cost a couple of cents.

    Unisys also had a contract with Duracell for AA batteries. Tens of thousands of batteries a month. The techs would get a bag full once a week for their portable dial-up devices which consumed batteries at an alarming rate when on the phone line. Cost to Unisys was said to be at $0.015 per battery. No one in the office bought AA batteries for three years.

  14. I’ll add two thumbs up for the canned Keystone and Costco/Kirkland beef. The family likes the chili and stew that I make with them.

    My wife cannot take a lot of spice/heat in her chili. She really likes these recipes that use Bush’s White Chili Beans (http://www.bushbeans.com/en_US/product/mild-great-northern-chili-beans):
    http://www.bushbeans.com/en_US/recipe/easy-white-chicken-chili
    http://www.bushbeans.com/en_US/recipe/classic-white-chicken-chili
    Using a Costco rotisserie chicken is the best, but the canned chicken works out well too. I make double batches and freeze.

    Remember, recipes are not written in stone, use them as a suggestion to experiment now and determine how you like things.

  15. I’m sure Walmart has ORSA podded the shit out of their shipping. These are the kind of cases we looked at while I was doing my MS in ORSA. We looked at airline scheduling a lot and companies that did a boat load of JIT, shipping, etc. Dr. Bob is certainly an outlier and probably doesn’t affect the bottom line.

  16. @ray, there is enormous variation in price and availability of appliance repair parts online. I usually search several sites (including sears) until I get an actual manf part number, then I search specifically for that part. This usually gets me the best price, then I need to see if I can get ALL my parts from the same place. Many of the online stores seem to just be front ends to the same backend data, with minimal style sheet differences between them.

    Saving on tax and shipping can make a big difference in the end price too.

    One of the reasons I love B&HPhoto for electronics is their no tax, free shipping, combined with very competitive pricing, lots of stock (direct ship from manf), and a decent search engine (if you have part numbers.) They used to be very high price, and mostly sold from their catalog. Now, even though they still produce the catalog, their pricing is great.

    nick

  17. Yeah, I’ve been ordering from B&H Photo since about 1967. If they don’t have something, I use Adorama.

  18. “Dr. Bob is certainly an outlier”

    These days, maybe not so much…

  19. Re Dollar Store and similar. (Almost) always $1 a can for veggies vs. recently $.33 a can for new stuff at our local Winco; and running $.49-.56 at the mainline stores on sale. Keep an eye on your local ads, etc.

  20. I also get cheap moisturizing bodywash/shampoo at the $1 store. Shampoo works just as well as BW for me.

  21. One of the reasons I love B&HPhoto

    Have spent several thousands of dollars with those chaps. Never an issue. Did get an item once that obviously been opened as the internal packaging was wrong. Called B&H to let them know that they had an issue. No desire to return item as it worked, looked new, and was fine by me. But B&H gave me 15% refund no questions asked. I had not even asked for anything, just letting them know of an issue.

    Shipping is free if you buy enough. Biggest item is no tax. At 9,75% in TN that adds up quickly on several thousand dollars. Hope it remains that way even though TN is trying to make it not so. Newegg charges tax because they have a distribution facility in the state, ugh.

    then I search specifically for that part

    I did. The local price was the best because shipping put other places at, or slightly higher. Even with the local tax. Plus it is a local business which supports the school system so I like to give them business when I can.

  22. They’ll also install a quick-disconnect fitting at the back door, which we can hook up to our generator if necessary. Propane costs about three times as much as electricity per BTU, but that’s not a major concern if we’re using the propane only for cooking or in an emergency for electric power.

    I may have to break down and get a generator. Something like one of those very quiet Honda 2 kW or 3 kW. We lost our electric power yesterday for 30 minutes just as I was throwing my morning oatmeal in the microwave. You know, oatmeal is nasty cold and uncooked. Before I make any purchases though, I’ve got to pay my property taxes on the house (paid the horrendous office property tax first) and pay for the office property insurance ($7K). Sigh.

  23. I may have to break down and get a generator. Something like one of those very quiet Honda 2 kW or 3 kW. We lost our electric power yesterday for 30 minutes just as I was throwing my morning oatmeal in the microwave.

    BTW, I do have a long term solution for cooking. I have an unassembled four burner Gas Grill in the garage with three large propane tanks. I also have a Coleman stove with a dozen small propane tanks. I am not a total poser …
    https://www.walmart.com/ip/Char-Broil-4-Burner-Gas-Grill-with-Side-Burner-Stainless-Steel/47428776

  24. I saw that list of six books for preppers; the usual Sun Tzu and Machiavelli, sure. I expect the average prepper is gonna get more accomplished by reading various manuals and .pdf’s for tools and machines and firearms, etc. Or cookbooks. For the latter I highly recommend the late James Beard’s “American Cookery,” in paperback, as the handy-dandy-all-in-one cookbook for us Murkan derps in the kitchen.

    Six books for inspiration and strategic thinking? I have my Douay-Rheims Bible and Saint Edmund Campion Missal, and a handful of first aid, self-defense, etc., stuff. I’m not about to imbibe ancient Chinese or Renaissance Florentine principles at this late stage of life.

  25. RE: Canning – My wife learned canning from her grandmother who lived her whole life in a log cabin outside Atoka Oklahoma. She can can almost anything but meat. Her pioneer family NEVER caned meat. They “preserved” it by salting, smoking, or making jerky. My favorite treat she makes is cinnamon pickles. Cucumber chunks marinated for a couple of days in a liquid made from vinegar, sugar, and melted red-hot candies. I have never seen anything like this for sale commercially. She makes a BIG batch in the bathtub every couple of years, cans them, and we ration them for holidays. Yummmm
    BTW: Grandma’s cabin was donated to the town of Atoka after she died and is now on display in the city park. Wife spent many summers living in that cabin when a child. Lots of good stories.

  26. Ebay is headed the same way. There are a whole bunch of sellers who buy at retail and then resell on ebay.

    How about the game where an Amazon Prime *retail* member sells items on EBay with free shipping and then sends you the item as a “gift” — a blatant violation of Prime terms of service unless you pay extra to be a business member.

  27. I remember doing a couple of deals on eBay back in the day where I got rooked; one taking place via “private” communication between me and a seller, and another where I stupidly paid for a printer that never arrived and no company/seller at the other end when I checked into it.

    Hopefully it’s better than that nowadays.

    As for Amazon, my smaller Kindle just updated itself and also informed me earlier that I now have “Alexa.” Tried it out, seemed OK, may try it out some more with HARDER questions. Say, wasn’t “Alexa” the voice for some standalone box you hadda buy not that long ago? If so, it’s now on the Kindles, too.

  28. Hopefully it’s better than that nowadays.

    Right now, I’d say EBay tends to favor buyers, but they drift back and forth over the years.

    My last printer came from the school surplus sale. $25 for a LaserJet 4000N.

    The big drawback of the surplus sales is that they attract dirtbags into the neighborhood from Austin’s picker culture that buys/sells on … EBay!

  29. My current, and most all future laser printers were on a $5 pallet from a school district surplus auction. I’ve got a stack of the smaller ones with toner, so when this one runs out, I’ll get another in here.

    Currently an HP Laserjet P1005.

    n

  30. I hate inkjet printers. Always seems to get smudged. I’ve got five laserjets at the office and one at the house.

  31. “Am I going to get banned for political posting now ?”

    Naw, I think the idea was for us toning it down a bit, after the overload we all got over the past few months of the “campaign.” I’m one of the worst offenders, if not THE worst, and I am trying manfully to avoid political chit for a while. (instead, I’ll yak about my traditionalist Latin Rite Roman Catholic stuff and medieval epic poetry).

    Here’s a goofy little alert for any of y’all that might have a Yahoo email account; I just got notified in all three of my backup email accounts that a sign-on attempt was thwarted that was coming from the Ukraine, about two or three hours ago. I’m behind an offshore VPN on a Linux machine, but of course the old Yahoo account is web-based email, just like gmail, fastmail, etc. And this just after reading Samuel Culper’s latest info on the ongoing attempts of state entities to monitor our national power grid and other networks, usually state entities like Russia and China.

  32. There was massive vote fraud in prog precincts. My guess is that with an honest count the dems would have finished about 5% to 8% behind rather than 0.08% ahead.

  33. Please, talk about politics, prepping, and the rest of the stuff we talk about. But we really need to make a 90% cut in discussions about portable, battery-operated, hand-held illumination devices.

  34. “…we really need to make a 90% cut in discussions about portable, battery-operated, hand-held illumination devices.”

    Hear ye! Harken and take note, citizens!

  35. There are some largish small ones on sale at costco ATM. Not much more than the cost of the included duracel batteries for LED and aluminum bodies.

    Not my idea of edc but for distributing in various places, ~$6 each is a decent price….

    n

    “aw, I’m such a little stinker ain’t I?”

  36. ““aw, I’m such a little stinker ain’t I?””

    “Eh—ain’t I a stinker?” (Bugs Bunny)

    Any of y’all notice that the early Bugs was kind of an eerie and demented character until they softened him up to be a jovial prankster?

  37. But we really need to make a 90% cut in discussions about portable, battery-operated, hand-held illumination devices.

    Are you still getting 1,000 spam concerning these per day ? If so, how do you have time to do anything else ?

    Before we switched our domain mx record to gmail, my office admin got over 10,000 spam joe job bounces one day. I had to go into her email account on the server and manually delete the spam email using vi. That was a bad day.

  38. Here’s a goofy little alert for any of y’all that might have a Yahoo email account

    What is this Yahoo that you speak of ?

  39. Here’s a data point for obola care
    Family of 4, kids are 7 and 5

    “healthcare costs. $1256.40 a month for high deductible healthcare. and $1,839.62 a month for a more comprehensive low deductible plan.”

    [more than our 15yr mortgage on a 2400 ft2 house in a nice suburb]

    “on the plus side, it’s a 12% increase, not 30% like some people are reportedly getting socked with, on the minus side, 12% of a pretty hefty amount is a chunk of change still. $131.52 a month extra. ”

    [I’ll remind readers that TX didn’t accept the Medicare extensions that would have obligated TX taxpayers for decades to come.]

    [This coverage is a PPO thru a nationally known insurer. It is no longer offered except to businesses that had it last year.]

    -unless we have some sort of catastrophe, we will never get out of the deductible.

    nick

  40. There was massive vote fraud in prog precincts. My guess is that with an honest count the dems would have finished about 5% to 8% behind rather than 0.08% ahead.

    Sounds like NC needs Voter ID. We have it here in Texas and it appears to work well. We had a moron XXXXX idiot here in Fort Bend County who decided to “test” the system and vote again at another precinct. The poll workers called the sheriff’s department and the idiot got himself arrested.
    http://www.click2houston.com/news/man-arrested-for-trying-to-vote-twice-in-fort-bend-county

  41. Here’s a data point for obola care
    Family of 4, kids are 7 and 5

    “healthcare costs. $1256.40 a month for high deductible healthcare. and $1,839.62 a month for a more comprehensive low deductible plan.”

    Welcome to the club. Everything is broken and nobody knows how to fix it.

    My business Silver PPO healthcare insurance with BCBS is going up 10% on Dec 1 to $8,400/month for 14 people.

    I am getting hit with serious cost increases in all taxes and insurance and no corresponding increase in income. We are going to have cutbacks in 2017 no matter what happens.

    BTW, in Texas you can get Business PPO health insurance with just two people who can be a husband and wife if both participate in the business. My wife is our office administrator and separate on the policy. She used to be employee #7 on the policy that got a price break. But, that price break was forbidden by Obolacare.

    Be careful about going to Emergency Rooms that are not in your network. That is how my employee walked out of Methodist Sugar Land with a $12,000 bill earlier this year after a 36 hour stay.

  42. I’ve got five laserjets at the office and one at the house.

    One year ago I picked up a new Brother Color Laser printer, duplexing, networked for $139.00. Yes, toner is expensive but I am still on the original toner that shipped with the unit.

    I also have a Canon color inkjet printer that I can print pictures and also print on DVD’s. Paid $59.00 for the printer. Ink is expensive as are all inkjets. I get the ink at Costco and have to buy all five colors (Magenta, Cyan, Yellow and two black cartridges) in one package.

    Miss the old HP Laserjet printers, as in circa 1990. Those things were expensive and reliable. But a parallel interface is difficult to come by in a computer. You can use converters, USB to Parallel, (I have) but they don’t work that well.

    I would like to get one of the Epson printers with the large ink tanks.

    https://epson.com/For-Work/Printers/Inkjet/Epson-WorkForce-ET-4550-EcoTank-All-in-One-Printer/p/C11CE71201

    Yes, there are smaller (cheaper) Epson tank printers but they are still north of $250.00. Hard to justify the price for my limited printing needs.

  43. And the inevitable disappointments begin to stack up already.

    I’d pardon her after she got on TV and confessed her crimes. And agreed to dissolve the family slush fund foundation.

  44. Someone on talking head AM radio today was saying ‘he’s just playing it smart until Jan20… Obola can still cause a ruckus if we rile him up….’ or words to that effect.

    Could be, but I think he’ll have bigger fish to fry dealing with whatever and whoever Putin has invaded before the inaugural….

    n

  45. Miss the old HP Laserjet printers, as in circa 1990. Those things were expensive and reliable. But a parallel interface is difficult to come by in a computer. You can use converters, USB to Parallel, (I have) but they don’t work that well.

    Print servers still work well and I use them still. Mostly on Oki 3410 dot matrix for forms. Built like tanks.

    HP Officejets 8000 series work great but never let them sit too long. Never get them to clean and print right and not economical to fix.

  46. [snip] But a parallel interface is difficult to come by in a computer. [snip]

    Both of my desktops have an add-on parallel card (the ones shown below are $11 at NewEgg) that feed an HP LaserJet5MP. The cool thing about the 5MP is that it has two input ports, so both desktops can send to it with no additional effort from me. The pre-Fiorina HP has seen some hard use, and looks it, but it continues to crank out the paper. I’ve also got both machines feeding a Brother ink jet hydra machine, and an ancient Panasonic wide carriage 24 pin dot matrix that hasn’t been used in quite some time.

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA0722KG3250&cm_re=parallel_card-_-15-166-005-_-Product

  47. RE: Printers – I’m a HUGE (Yuge) fan of the old HPs. I have a 20-yo Laserjet 9000 I got for free and have spent less than $500 in 5 years on parts to keep it running. $0.0025/page for toner. Can’t beat it.

    Same for a 15yo CLJ5500. Got one for “free”, bought a “box of parts” (another printer) on eBay for $300 and get about $0.015/page. It’s hard to beat.

    I figure another 5-10 years of relatively cheap running until parts become too expensive to make them so cheap. I may get a couple more boxes before then.

    For home, I have a stack of Laserjet 1012s (about $40/each) and toner comes to $0.0025/page. Those printers are DX printers. Take one out & exchange it for a “new” one.

    Edit: By “I” I mean my employer. New life for me, new life for those printers. 9-5 is the only way I can afford health insurance.

  48. Re: war crimes: with a stroke of the pen. It will not surprise me a bit. The only question is when charges will be brought.

  49. Canned meat?
    Parts for appliances?

    Haircuts!

    Excellent. The boys are back …

    Mr. Rick H. gets major credit for turning it around, off the “political” bullshit.

  50. Thanks to the DoJ, NC doesn’t ask for ID. You can vote here even if you’re not a US citizen. Even if you’re a dead or imaginary non-citizen.

  51. Both of my desktops have an add-on parallel card

    I have also tried the cards with mixed results. The problems seem to be with the drivers. Don’t remember what brand of cards. Basically abandoned all that mess with the current Brother laser being network connected. The Canon is also network connected, supposed to work wirelessly but again, problems with the drivers, so just hardwired it.

    Oki 3410 dot matrix for forms

    When I worked at the credit union all the teller terminals had Oki printers connected. Systems were all running DOS, then WIN95 and had native parallel ports. Printers were rock solid. Print heads would sometimes get damaged because of people issues. The print heads were easily replaced and I think I kept four or five print heads as spares in addition to a couple of printers.

  52. I still buy and resell dot matrix printers when I see them. They are still available new, but can get pricy. If you want multiple copy forms, you still need the impact printers.

    (lots of test equipment out there still using impact printers)

    nick

  53. Well you can certainly do forms on other media but the price is nowhere near what preprinted on dot matrix costs. At work we’ve look at carbonless multicolor for laser printers and the copier people really try to push it but it doesn’t work out for the volume we produce. If you print on plain paper and need to get multiple signed copies you need carbon paper. Try to find that. Paperless digital might be cool but also is not cheap.
    We also have an Oki 4410 because some people still like reports on fan-fold paper (because it stays together).

  54. Well you can certainly do forms on other media the price is nowhere near what preprinted on dot matrix costs.

    Multi-part forms is the issue. We printed stuff at the CU that required two copies, one for the teller, one for the customer. I think they have since converted to small thermal printers for receipts. At one time during the transition they were printing on 8.5×11 pieces of paper on a laser. I pitched a fit at the data systems supplier at that little deed. That, along with other seriously stupid stuff they did which I raked them over the coals for, got me fired. That would be the supplier located in Salem Oregon.

    They bragged about their loan interest calculation as being really accurate because they reiterated their calculations until the amount did not change. Other systems used the standard formula. Difference was less than $0.02 in the final amount. What they did not tell you is that they did reiterate calculations so they could use integer division rather than floating point because floating point sucked on the HP hardware and when installed HP charged you more money.

    The CU printed statements in-house, about 60,000 a month, 82,000 quarterly. The proposed solution from the provider was a dot matrix printer. I calculated that it would take three weeks to print the quarterly statements, if nothing went wrong with the printer. So I went behind their backs and ordered an impact printer and interfaced it myself. Really pissed them off. I then ordered a HP laser printer and interfaced it to print reports rather than their dot matrix printer, which would not be available three weeks out of the year as it would be printing statements. Really pissed them off again.

    Marketing director and the salesperson, body like a brick shithouse and really good lookin, (got the commission) went into the CEO’s office, waved her tits, and I got the ax. Three months later the CEO was canned by the board.

    Anyway I had taken copious notes during the conversion of all the problems and some of the really stupid solutions. When a local CU in Oak Ridge was changing system two vendors, one from Salem, one from San Diego, were competing and one of them was the vendor that got me fired. I shared my notes with the head IT guy. The supplier in Salem did not get the contract which was awarded to the supplier in San Diego.

    Shortly after I got a letter from the supplier in Salem’s lawyer indicating that I was going to be sued for slander and libel. I don’t know what the local CU told them. I wrote back that I still had all my notes (several dozen pages), they were true and accurate, could be corroborated and if they wanted to drag me through the mud their incompetence would be part of the discovery and for the most part they can go pound sand. Never heard back.

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