Saturday, November 21, 2020

Well, That Experiment Didn't Go As Expected

 Last April I decided to switch from TracFone to AT&T. AT&T had a prepaid plan where you get unlimited data, talk, and text for $50 a month with autopay. There was 5 something in taxes etc on top of that. I don't talk or text much so that wasn't the attraction, it was the data. I was looking for something better than the DSL we had at home. We were in AZ at the time and I had to buy the phone at Walmart as there wasn't an AT&T store where we were. If there had been a store it would have been closed because of Covid like the Verizon store was. Anywho, I looked online and decided on the phone and went to Walmart and bought one. 

This is the phone I bought a Samsung J2. When I went to activate it I put in the zip code where it would be used the most. The bastards gave me a new number before I could indicate I already had a phone number. Finally after 3 days of talking to Bangalore I got my number transferred. Then I couldn't get autopay set up and I was not going to pay $75+tax a month. Finally before the month was up I called the AT&T store close to where we live in Michigan and got help in setting up the autopay. 

While we were in AZ about all could do online was check emails, facebook, twitter, etc... Thought when we got home I'd be able to download TV shows to the phone and then watch on the TV, WRONG!!! The fucking phone would not mirror to either the laptop or the firestick. Googled it and the answer was download an app for mirroring.  All the apps said the phone and laptop or firestick have to be on the same wifi. I have 2 routers and tried using both. The message I got when I had both the phone and the firestick on the same wifi was no internet. Well, DUH! The internet was on the phone, but you have to turn off mobile data when you turn on wifi. If I had internet at the house I wouldn't need the fucking phone to watch TV shows! Tried connecting the phone to the laptop and all I accomplished was I could look at pictures and messages from the phone on the laptop. Also now I have to enter a pin number to access Windows 10. Pain in the ass!

There are 2 AT&T stores within easy driving distance of where we live (within an hour). I went to both and didn't get any help whatsofuckingever. First one told me to go the Walmart because that's where I bought the phone. Second one said they don't sell phones for the prepaid plan outright, go to Walmart. Went to Walmart and bought a different phone, not only didn't it do what I wanted it was less user friendly than the one I had. Returned it and got my money back. It's like they purposely restrict mirroring to LIMIT you unlimited data!

Anywho, we went back to the phone company for DSL and I went back to TracFone. Again I had trouble transferring my number. It asked for my AT&T account number and pin. The only account number I knew was the phone number and I had set up a pin so I used that. WRONG! On the day my service was about to expire I had to call AT&T and get the account number and a temporary pin. Finally got the number transferred to TracFone, but when I tried calling The Old Lady's phone got an error message and transferred to Straight Talk. After trying to fix it by calling, texting, online chatting with tech support I finally tried calling a different number and it worked. The problem was The Old Lady's phone was out of minutes. Funny part is I had been using her phone to talk to AT&T and TracFone to get my number transferred and then several hours later when my phone was supposed to work hers didn't.

Monday, November 25, 2019

Hopefully the Mileage Will Improve

Last year when we came back from campground hosting at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore The Guppy started running rough. Thought it was the O2 sensor and ordered a new one. Spent what good weather there was trying to remove the old one. Then in the Spring when I was waiting for the snow to melt, The Old Lady's niece and her family came to stay with us. They were living in The Guppy so I couldn't work on it. When they found a place of their own I started trying to remove the O2 sensor again. Finally I gave up and decided to get a nut that would fit the O2 sensor, drill a hole in the exhaust pipe and weld the nut on. That worked and I was finally able to install the new sensor.

No photo description available.
New O2 sensor on exhaust pipe.

It still wasn't running right, so I thought I need to replace the EGR valve. By then we were campground hosts again at Pictured Rocks and living in a tent. On my way to Pictured Rocks I stopped at a parts store and ordered the EGR valve. When it came in I picked it up and went home. I replaced the EGR valve, but while I was doing that I noticed a elbow on a vacuum line that had a hole worn in it. Didn't have time to fix because I needed to bring The Guppy to the campground because living in a tent was getting old.

 After things cleared out and the black smoke lessened to the point where I could hardly notice, it cruised right along. The Guppy ran decent there and back. I think it got about the same mileage as before I did the work, maybe even a slight improvement. 

The part after it was removed.

After I got The Guppy home again I asked my neighbor who is a mechanic to look at the part and tell me what it was. He looked at the part on the top of the engine after I had removed the air cleaner and ducting so could see the problem part. He didn't know (he's not a Ford man, prefers Chevys), so I did a lot of googling of things like vacuum schematics for '89 E-350. Found what I thought might be it, but it was listed as "FPR". What the fuck is FPR? Finally found out it was Fuel Pressure Regulator. It allows excess gas from the fuel rail to go back the gas tank. Bought one, then came the fun of removing the old one.

This is the new part in place after removing the old one.

 There are 3 screws that hold the part on. They are allen head 4mm or 5/32. I had a set with a 5/32 allen wrench. In order to get at the screws I had to reach under the part and one of them I had to reach under fuel lines. I lost the wrench a couple times and found it again. Then I lost it and could not find it. I have lots of allen wrenches, but none the right size and shape. It needed to be a small L-shaped one. So I bought another set.

The Old Lady said why don't you put a leash on the wrench so you won't lost this one? I have some waxed lace that is used to tie wire bundles together on aircraft and thought that would be perfect for making a leash for the wrench.

With the new wrench I was able to remove the old part and install the new one. One of the screws was very hard to get at because I had to reach under the fuel lines and feel around until I get the wrench in the screw. Getting it out was easy compared to putting the screw back in. Two of the screws I could reach and start with my fingers fairly easily. The third one not so easy. I thought maybe a longer screw would be easier to install, found the right size metric screw and got it started. After tightening it about half way I realized it was too long, so I had to take it out and put the original screw in. I did manage to get it in and all the screws tight, put all the parts I removed for access back in place and got it running again. Hopefully the mileage will improve, but won't know until after we hit the road again some time next month.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Follow the Fucking Rubles

Recently I posted a video of Buck Owens song "I've got a tiger by the tail". On facebook I said for some reason it reminded me of the GOP. Now I'm not saying tRump is a tiger, more like a rabid skunk, in that if you are holding a skunk by the tail you better keep it off the ground. If you let it go, you'll either get sprayed or bitten or both. They are afraid to let go of tRump, because they know if tRump goes down they all go down. Not like that would be a bad thing, my fondest wish is to see the GOP become the Whigs of the 21st century!

The reason I say the FuckingRepublican'ts have a problem is they or most of them took so much Borscht-tainted money that now it's the reason their party color is Red! FOLLOW THE FUCKING RUBLES!

I have been saying for a couple years now #FollowtheRubles. How much you want to bet the real reason tRump is fighting so hard to keep his tax returns secret is that much of his income is in Rubles. tRump has been laundering Russian money for decades thru his various properties. FOLLOW THE FUCKING RUBLES!

The NRA (Now Russian Affiliate) laundered $30M of Russian money in the 2016 election. Many GOP Super Pacs accepted Russian money. And I wonder why the GOP is now a bunch of Russophiles? There are several reasons why I'm befuddled by this. 1. I grew up during the Cold War when the USSR (Russia) was the enemy. 2. When I was in the Air Force one of the units I served in was a predecessor to AWACS that tracked Russian bombers to make sure they were not going to attack us. 3. My heritage is Finnish, the Finns have many centuries of hating and not trusting the Russians. FOLLOW THE FUCKING RUBLES!

Saturday, May 25, 2019


For a long time I've had an internet problem, several internet problems. Not sure which is the cause, the ISP, or Windows fucking number 10. Called tech support for the ISP a number of times last year to no avail. Once the phone repairman found a burnt spot in the wires, cut a short piece out and spliced it back together. Didn't make any difference. Lately I've done a lot of googling and it seems that Windows fucking 10 has a lot of internet connectivity problems. Tried some of the fixes and still have the problem. It's really frustrating when you click on a link and the internet goes away, or you go to leave a comment on facebook or Twitter and no internet.

Anywho, I decided I'd try Linux OS. I've been curious about it for more than 10 years. I googled how to install Linux. Found how to download Linux to a flash drive and try Linux from the flash drive before installing it. I did that and did a couple of test drives. Linux didn't seem to have the problems I had with Windows fucking 10 as far as connectivity went. Here is where I found the download.

Now I have it installed along side Windows fucking 10. Am writing this post using Linux, so we'll see how it goes.

Now I have to bookmark the porn sites all over again!

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Finally Got To Use A Tool I Bought 10 Years Ago

Biscuit Joiner
Just finished a project where I used a biscuit joiner for the first time since I bought it. I spotted a biscuit cutter at Goodwill about 10 years ago, the price was right ($15 I think), so I bought it thinking I will use this someday. Well, that day finally arrived. Other than doing a few test cuts I hadn't used it until this project. Used it to cut slots for biscuits to glue a trim piece on the front of a countertop I made using flooring.

This countertop is in an awkward space under the stairs. Trying to fit a countertop in there would have been a lot of work. I decided to make it out of flooring as I could do it piece by piece. It worked out pretty good.

Trim across front clamped for gluing. 
I left it clamped overnight and today I applied the finish. Now have to wait for it to dry before I can put the microwave and other things back on the counter.

The finished project.

Sunday, March 31, 2019

Solar Panels

I figured out where to put the solar panels where they would be out of the way.

After I removed the window on the front of the cab-over there was this flat area where I could hang the solar panels. I had an old piano type hinge that was on the door of the single wide trailer I disassembled a dozen years ago. I attached the solar panels to it so I could use it to hang them. At first I screwed a couple hooks into a 2x2 that goes across where the top of the window was. Then I had a better idea. I had some plant hanger parts, like a screw where one end had wood screw threads and the other end had 10/24 threads. That way I could secure the panels to The Guppy.

Front view

Side view
The set-up was working fine for a few days and then it quit charging. At first I thought the controller might be bad, but when I checked for voltage coming from the panels there wasn't any. There was a 4 into 1 connector to connect the 4 panels to the controller. When I disconnected the 4 into 1 connector and tried ohming it, I discovered that I had continuity across both terminals on the end.  So now I need to get a new 4 into 1 connector.


This is a picture of the 4 into 1 connectors that we ordered to replace the defective one. These are shorter than the one that came with the solar panels, but they will work as the panels have fairly long wires. Also I made an extension from the old 4 into 1 connector as the problem seems to be where the 4 wires connect to the 1. I wasn't able to open that area, but I've narrowed it down to that's where the problem is.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Recently Someone Accused Me of Being Bitter

Am I bitter, HELL NO! I'm FUCKING PISSED! I'm PISSED at the accuser and the 60 million others that voted to put the ORANGE BUFFOON in the White House. From day one he did everything possible to show he was not fit to manage a Blockbuster store let alone be President. I have a hunch that even if he had came right out and said "I'm just shitting you, I don't want the job" the MAGAts would have still voted for the asshole because he represents what they are.

I'm old enough to remember when the Russians were the enemy, not the benefactors of the GOP! Every fucking day there are new revelations about Russian interference in the 2016 election. Every time you turn around there is another Russian in the woodpile!

 trump russia collusion - Imgflip

There's the gun nut from Russia who infiltrated the NRA (Now Russian Affiliate) and funneled millions of dollars that the NRA laundered and used for campaign ads. Then there are the Russians that gave money to PACs of various GOP politicians. Like I said there's always another Russian in the woodpile! Where did this lovefest with Russia come from on the Never-Right? #FollowtheRubles

As someone who worked on planes that tracked the Russian bombers to make sure they weren't coming to bomb US, I find the laissez faire attitude of most of the people towards Russia and Putin very disturbing. While I don't think we should go back to the days of Tailgunner Joe finding Commies under every bed, we should be very skeptical of everything that involves Russia.

Just like there is the saying, "Once a Marine, always a Marine", well Putin was KGB and once you are KGB you are always KGB! It may no longer be called KGB, but it is still around and Putin is the MMFWIC (Mean Mother Fucker What's In Charge)!

Twitter Won't Stop Dunking On These Trumpsters Wearing 'I ...

I am FUCKING PISSED that more people aren't FUCKING PISSED!

Friday, December 7, 2018

Something That Really Pisses Me OFF

Is when someone I've always thought was smarter than the average bear parrots the Orange Buffoon and faux news memes about the NFL player protests. The ones that claim the players are disrespecting the flag, the troops, and mom's apple pie! The one below really pissed me off.

This photo has nothing to do with the protests. The guy died in a motorcycle accident in this country. SHE IS PISSED THAT HER PHOTO IS BEING MISREPRESENTED THIS WAY!

The Overpaid Kneelers in the NFL, we all know what this means, "What are these uppity niggers protesting about, they have money and no reason to bitch!   

The above meme even gets religion involved, talk about hitting all the buttons of Reich-WingNut Fuckery! 

When they try to use the flag and troops as the reason for the protests they are basically saying they have no answer to why the players are protesting and want to distract people from the real problem. SQUIRREL!

Jesse Ventura, a Navy Seal, said it better than me when he was asked about the flag burning amendment (put that way it sounds like you are in favor of burning the flag) back in the 90s when Rush Limpballs and the rest of Reich-WingNut pundits were pushing for such an amendment. "I didn't go halfway around the world and put my life on the line to take rights away from people." That is one of very few things I agree with Jesse. I personally didn't put my life on the line altho if I had gotten orders for the "Land of Fun and Sun" it would have been a different story. I fought the war on the home front other than a short time in the Iceland Campaign. But, yeah, I also didn't serve to take rights away from people!

Another thing about this that pisses me off is most of these Super Patriots pushing these memes never served. I don't have a problem with not serving, but I do have a problem with assholes like Ted Nugent who bragged about shitting his pants to avoid the draft and is now a Super Patriot Warhawk! Anywho, why is it that most of those that didn't serve are such Super Patriots -- to over compensate? Also, it seems like those that push these memes could care less about the fact the Russians interfered with our election in 2016, and that the Russians poured a lot of money into the campaigns and to the NRA for them to launder and use in the campaign! I'm old enough to remember when the Russians were the enemy not the benefactors of the GOP!

If we don't follow the Constitution and the Bill of Rights then it might as well be as aWol was accused of saying, "It's just a goddamned piece of paper!"

Addendum: This country was founded on protests, if it wasn't for those protesters 250 years ago, we would still be kissing the Queen's ass!

Thursday, October 4, 2018

We Were Survivors

We spent September as campground hosts at Pictured Rocks Lakeshore. Of the three sets of hosts we were the only ones to stay the full month. Another campground host disappeared sometime in the middle of the month. The gale coming off the lake may have had something to do with the decision to split. The couple at the lighthouse left after the solar system went down and the generator wouldn't work so they had no heat or water. Can't really blame them, they were from Florida.

Solar panels trying to catch some sunlight.

We had interesting times staying at a primitive campsite for an entire month. I bought a set of solar panels last spring. I had set them up at home, but there really wasn't much of a load on the battery, all that was drawing power from the battery was the radio playing 24/7. At the campground it was different, the site was wooded with little direct sunlight. After about a week and a half the RV battery went dead. On our day off I took the battery home and let my boat battery running the RV. Basically it was the refrigerator running on propane, but it still needed a battery keep the gas valve open etc. When I checked the battery at home with my hydrometer, it was totally flat. The hydrometer didn't even wiggle when filled with electrolyte from a cell. After about 24 hours the battery was about half-charged. When we got back to the RV the boat battery was dead and the refrigerator wasn't working.

In addition to my solar panels there was a solar panel belonging to the Park Service for out use. I would use that to try and charge the battery that wasn't in the RV.  It never did fully charge the battery, but at least it wasn't dead.

After almost three weeks I came to the conclusion that the problem was the refrigerator. That was the only thing drawing power and causing the battery to go dead. Also we heard a strange noise coming from the refrigerator. We shut off the refrigerator and bought some ice for it. After we shut it off we didn't have anymore problems with the battery going dead. (I had tried testing to see how much of amperage draw there was on the different circuits. They all had marginal draw when I tested each circuit one at a time. The circuit for the refrigerator checked out OK, but it looks like I would have had to be checking it for a long time to see when the amperage spiked.

After we got home I used an extension cord to run power to the RV and we turned on the frig. After a day the water bottles we put in the freezer were solid ice, so it looks like we can still use it when we are plugged into 110. If we get a couple of warm days I'll see if it will work on propane again. There are two settings for running the frig. One is the normal position (the one we weren't using) and the other has a heater to get rid of condensation (that was the position it was on the whole time until we turned it off). I hadn't used the normal position because when I would put the switch on normal the light in the frig didn't come on. It always did in the heater position.

Because of the battery drain we didn't use the furnace much when it got colder. We bought a Buddy Heater to use instead.

Mr. Heater F232000 MH9BX Buddy 4,000-9,000-BTU Indoor-Safe Portable Propane Radiant Heater
It worked pretty good, we had a few mornings where the outside temp was in the 30s and inside in the 40s. It didn't take long to make it bearable in the RV. I had several little bottles of propane along to use with my BBQ grill, but used them all with the Buddy Heater. I also had an adapter along that I could use to refill the little propane bottles from a 20lb tank. I did have to fill a couple and used one.