Saturday, August 17, 2019

Garage Lighting Phase 3

So with the installation of a third outlet box the interior lighting is now complete. Huzzah!

So now all 6 lights are active instead of just 5 of them. I still have a few items left to do, such as wiring in some external lights and replacing the 14/2 wiring down to the switch with some 12/3 so that I can control the garage door opener and extension cord spool separately from the (motion-activated) interior lights and (motion-activated, not yet installed) exterior lights.

In other news Scooty-Puff Sr is in jail temporarily while I deal with a small tear in the seat before it becomes a big tear in the seat.

Shouldn't be too much fuss, just gotta get in there and stitch it up.

I also went ahead and cleaned the seats in the van with some upholstery cleaner. Got a bunch of dirt out but it's still possibly not 100% clean. It's kind of hard to tell with the sun shining on it since the light tends to mask some of the dirt. No photos of this, just picture mostly-clean van seats in your mind's eye. I believe in you, you can do it!

Thursday, August 15, 2019

A Vole Hole?

What a curious discovery in the boulevard today.

It's a bit small for a gopher hole and there's no dirt piled up around the hole so it was dug from below rather than from above. I've never seen another like it so I haven't a clue where the other end(s) of it might be. How very peculiar.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

My rear end is sealed

Got the seals replaced in Orthrus from the transmission on back. Took a bit of time in the shop since it's a pretty old bike and they didn't have all the tools and so on they needed to do things and had to buy/make some stuff. But it's all wrapped up now and it's good to have the whole gang back together again. Hopefully it won't be dripping any more oil onto the driveway now.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Miraculously Restored

This morning I decided that I was tired of dealing with the flattened foam in the driver's seat of the pedovan. Over the years of people sliding over the side of the seat to get in and out, the foam had been crushed and flattened to a shape entirely unbefitting a posterior of refined taste such as my own.

After a bit of muddling with some bolts and screws, I was miraculously able to refurbish the seat to look almost like new again!

... by, of course, swapping it out with the passenger seat base.

The good news is that nobody ever sits in the passenger seat, and those who do should be thankful to be chauffeured around in the first place and not whine that the seat foam isn't to their satisfaction.

I was a little bit tempted to swap the backs too, but because the upholstery is asymmetric (there's a hole on one side that the arm rest goes through) it would have been a bit more involved as I'd have to skin the seat, swap the foams, then re-stuff them and that's honestly just a bit too much work.

While I was poking at stuff I noticed that I was getting a bit of rust along the lower edge of the passenger side door. Upon closer inspection I discovered that the sealant along the seam of where the lower part of the outer door skin is folded over the inner door stamping had failed, and was trapping condensation water that would normally drain out the weep holes at the bottom of the door. I gave it a quick hit with a cup wheel to knock off the old sealant, loose paint and corrosion, and smeared on some silicone to keep the water from collecting there again.

At some point I'll pick up a can of white rustoleum or something to add a layer of protection over the bare metal there, but given I live in California I'm not too worried about the rust progressing much before I get around to that.

There's a bit of rust staining on the outside of the panel and I'm pondering what to do about it. I could leave it as is and just not care, or I could go through the trouble of sourcing some matching white paint, spraying up part of the body panel, sanding and buffing to blend it in, etc. It's a lot of work for a minor problem but I do have a bit of paint missing elsewhere on the van so I might end up going down that road eventually anyway.

But again: California, so I'm not in a big rush.

There's still plenty of stuff on my to-do list on the van. Still need to swap out the steering wheel, finish up the wiring from the aux battery to the inverter and the power ports that I mounted to the seat bases a while back, and of course build the bed/bench/shower/sink/whatever module that I've been cooking up in my head to make the rear pleasantly campable.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Shifting Perspectives

This piece looks important.

I guess that explains why Rabbit Season wasn't shifting right recently. Buttered it up with loctite and snugged it back down, so hopefully that'll be the last of that issue.

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Laying Some Pipe

Or perhaps unlaying, as the case may be. I removed the last of the vestigial plumbing from the old garage sink (which I finally managed to get dispose of, as an aside) and replaced the shitty 30c hose bib washer connections with a fancy dual ball valve. Now I'm at least 93% more likely to switch the water off when I'm not using the washer (still never gonna happen).

Interestingly this plumbing will be somewhat short lived, as I'll eventually be relocating the washer and dryer to the west wall rather than the south wall, which will (along with replacing the hot water tank with a tankless and relocating it outside) eliminate the mess of pipes going across the stairs between the garage and the house. It's a bit absurd that they were ever there in the first place, but, well, I've learned not to ask too many questions about stuff like that.

I had, with completely unfounded optimism, assumed I could get this job done before lunch when the heat of the day would set in. Two issues prevented that, though. Firstly, this piping is at the low point of the system and I had a great deal of difficulty getting the water out of the pipes. The second, fairly minor, issue was an incomplete solder joint that happened on the valve connection for the hot water of all things. Luckily I caught that while it was still hissing air before the water reached that connection, and I was able to shut things down, re-drain the system, and re-sweat the connection without too much fuss.

In the end I managed to wrap things up by 12:30 completely covered in sweat, but a nice hot shower washed away those worries and I was still able to get a late lunch by 1:00pm. Did a load of laundry after that and everything performed flawlessly.

Feels good to have this project checked off, as it'd been on the list for a while now.

Take Off, Ya Hoser

Got some hose reels installed in the front and back. Front has a 100ft 3/4 inch hose and rear has a 50 foot 5/8 inch hose (5/8 is standard for garden hoses).

I went with the 3/4 hose in front because the longer length will tend to restrict the flow a bit more, and it wasn't much more expensive than the 5/8. It's nice to be able to actually water the plantings out front, though eventually I'd like to finish installing the automatic sprinklers that the previous owners had started... Eventually.