Day: March 7, 2023

Tues. Mar. 7, 2023 – pickups and drop offs… maybe.

Cool and damp, possibly overcast.  Maybe rain?  We’re right on the edge of the national forecast, so probably not, but no one really knows.   It stayed overcast most of yesterday, and got kinda warm in the afternoon.   I was a bit sweaty working outside.

And I did eventually work.   I had to clean up and move some stuff in the garage to make room for the hamfest stuff that was going back in there.   I pulled out some stuff I wanted for the BOL, and I threw out almost all the boxes I was keeping for ebay shipping.   I wasn’t using them and they take a lot of room.   A full pickup bed worth of room, as it turned out.  Re-stacking and moving some stuff to close up gaps got me some more space too.  All the hamfest stuff, and a couple of black and yellow bins went back in the garage.

One of the things I wanted to dig out is my drain camera.   Years ago I bought a drain camera to look under my concrete patio, and under my slab.  Still have the camera.   There is the mystery drain for the RV pad at the BOL that I want to snake and see where it goes… and the cam should do that no problem.   I have to find the display (or add a connector for an analog video display- like one of the portable flat TVs I have stacked.)   The display was some kind of Creative labs recorder with a built in screen, but all I really need is a way to see the composite video output.  There is a lesson in there.   The camera and snake were fine, but the proprietary display/recorder wasn’t made in enough quantity so when it went EOL, the drain cam did too.   IF the maker had provided a composite video connection, and let people use any old analog tv device, it would have had a longer life.  Standards people, use them.  And preppers, if you want the gear to last, make sure you can get stuff to work with it for a long time, especially standard stuff that is widely available.

It’s worth repeating, custom connectors and breakout cables are a point of failure.   Even if the companies are still around, the cable probably won’t be.  Remember all the custom and unique cables that pcmcia card devices used?   Those modem cards are landfill without the cable, but the ones with the x jack built in are still in service.  Ditto for the Dell dual head video card that needed a special Y cable.   You can still get a DVI cable.  Very hard to get that high density plug to 2 DVI cable splitter.  I get it  that the manufacturer doesn’t care if you still want to use the device, but YOU should care.  Power cords are an issue for everything.  Don’t buy devices with uncommon plugs or jacks.

I mentioned recently that I was able to find a new cutter for my manual meat grinder.   Widely used, simple design, durable, and industry standard.   100 years later, you can order a new part to fit.   Ditto for Mokapot coffee makers, the filter and sealing rings are easily available.   There is a good reason to buy what everyone else uses and not the thing with a unique aspect, that might not last.

Today I’ve got a steel cabinet to pick up, so I’ll combine trips and do other pickups too.    I’ll dump my pickup load of cardboard and trash.   I might even use the cardboard recycle dumpster at the school if I have time.    Then it’s off to the auction houses.  Besides my pickups, I’ve got an item for consignment at a house I haven’t used before.   They’ve been getting great money for it in past auctions, so since I’m going there anyway, I’ll try consigning it with them.   Hope it does well…

All the rest of you, stack it up, but stack things you can get parts for…


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