July 3rd, 2016:
Car Update: Camaro Emerges

After many struggles with my Firebird I finally got it started, only to confirm that my last hurried fuel line repair wasn’t good enough. So, I took a break to focus on my 10-year newer old car: 1999 Camaro. It has been sitting for over 2 years, but I thought it would be a better candidate to get on the road. I removed the cover, knowing that I had some mildew to deal with in the interior… however, I also discovered that I had left the passenger window open about an inch. More than large enough to let mice in and definitely enough to let the stink of my old pole barn set in. We had some work ahead of us: deep cleaning, odor elimination, flushing fluids, cleaning out acorns and mouse nests. [peg-image src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-elNiu7Ad0rg/V3g0OlABdnI/AAAAAAAA8nA/J5OF3Ktg_j8sYx0e1EXaq1qQacKTQ_TDwCHM/s144-o/IMG_2085.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/106726501754907162579/6302845105978564881#6302845103560029810″ caption=”” type=”image” alt=”IMG_2085.JPG” image_size=”3264×2448″ peg_single_image_size=”w240-c” ] [peg-image src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-6bruQq4iU88/V3g0OuGMOUI/AAAAAAAA8nA/2OchZ3COcgcvnwnDvb4XbImFEyG27WMKACHM/s144-o/IMG_2084.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/106726501754907162579/6302845105978564881#6302845106001819970″ caption=”” type=”image” alt=”IMG_2084.JPG” image_size=”3264×2448″ peg_single_image_size=”w240-c” ] [peg-image src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-6RxE1IG0gIo/V3g0OtInI_I/AAAAAAAA8nA/SD8qTOsgOCcaJ932DF3ax2veUIqSfAX1QCHM/s144-o/IMG_2083.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/106726501754907162579/6302845105978564881#6302845105743537138″ caption=”” type=”image” alt=”IMG_2083.JPG” image_size=”3264×2448″ peg_single_image_size=”w240-c” ] [peg-image src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-jFBThfAyI54/V3g0OiXOzEI/AAAAAAAA8nA/yNjk4ZP4auk1qPDvDaW9wndJY0OOyGOVgCHM/s144-o/IMG_2082.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/106726501754907162579/6302845105978564881#6302845102852066370″ caption=”” type=”image” alt=”IMG_2082.JPG” image_size=”3264×2448″ peg_single_image_size=”w240-c” ] [peg-image src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-Oj5Cuh72bWs/V3g0Om80A2I/AAAAAAAA8nA/9a4zYz22jQ4RMKNYc5Gfb-yUUPER9wYGQCHM/s144-o/IMG_2081.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/106726501754907162579/6302845105978564881#6302845104083436386″ caption=”” type=”image” alt=”IMG_2081.JPG” image_size=”3264×2448″ peg_single_image_size=”w240-c” ] [peg-image src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/–otztXderos/V3g0Oi–_tI/AAAAAAAA8nA/i5fqH6P3QQc6W5kRzwnh-dwiNFbf4awXQCHM/s144-o/IMG_2080.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/106726501754907162579/6302845105978564881#6302845103018802898″ caption=”” type=”image” alt=”IMG_2080.JPG” image_size=”3264×2448″ peg_single_image_size=”w240-c” ] During the next 2 weeks, I spent the better part of 3 days cleaning the interior and prepping the engine. The only surprise was a mouse mess to clean up in the C pillar that I missed on my first pass. I used our commercial carpet cleaner, baking soda, Lysol disinfectant, water/vinegar, clove/water (to prevent mildew), and eventually bleach/water. Ultimately the mild bleach solution was most effective at neutralizing odors. I let my car bake with the roof off and doors open in the sun. All in all, there is a marked improvement in odor. Continuing to let it air out in our garage that has just recently been upgraded by Insta Garage Doors of San Bernardino county, has continued to help. However, as I let it run (trying to work through the fuel/stabilizer in the gas tank, it started to overheat. Yesterday, I replaced the the thermostat, but the old one looked like new. I’m hoping that I just failed to bleed all of the air out of the cooling system last time (which is a common issue with aluminum block LS motors). If that’s not it, a replacement radiator cap might be the solution… but I dread that I could have a bad head gasket and air/oil is getting into the coolant. Though my time is limited at the moment, I hope to figure out what’s going on before my birthday in mid-July. I just want to drive it around for 1 day… [peg-image src=”https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-rANak572jhE/V3g0OhcHRCI/AAAAAAAA8nQ/kCd15WiZS8sg7J-tnaff1OWs1tfBtEjjACHM/s144-o/IMG_2100.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/106726501754907162579/6302845105978564881#6302845102604108834″ caption=”Look at ’em there, pretty maids all in a row.” type=”image” alt=”IMG_2100.JPG” image_size=”3264×2448″ peg_single_image_size=”w640″ peg_img_css=”aligncenter” ]

- Duane

August 26th, 2008:
Barn Painted. Writing iPhone articles for “Get In My iPhone”

Gina and I spent a few (long) weekends painting our polebarn/shop. The helpful folks at Sherwin Williams, helped us select an oil-based enamel that should last for decades. We rented a sprayer and after days of prepping and priming, we painted the barn. It looks like new!

I’ve been invited to write iPhone-related articles on Get In My iPhone, a new iPhone-centric blog. My most recent contribution details using the iPhone (or iPod touch) as a central control device for an X10 or Insteon-based home automation system. Enjoy!

- Duane

June 15th, 2008:
Crazy weekend: Storm, power out, barn crushed (again), yard trashed, network issues, and lots of anniversaries!

Last weekend was rough. Our area was hit by a huge storm around 6 am on Friday. Trees were broken and/or uprooted. A pair of large trees fell on our shop and the whole area was without power. We set out to borrow a generator from Gina’s dad, Glenn and helped set them up with digital ofter-the-air tv in their travel trailer (their power was out too, but had a nice camper as a backup). We got some supplies from Costco and headed back home. Around 3, DTE got to our yard and started removing the down trees and lines from the pole barn. I figured it was safe to finally enter the metal building to get my chainsaw. I spent the rest of the afternoon cutting up fallen trees on our property. When the trees and lines were finally cleared, I surveyed the damage to the barn and confirmed that it is, indeed, worse than the tree damage from last year. We were saving up to finish the repair from last year, so at least nothing new was harmed, but this time the insurance company will have to fix the whole roof.

We continued to clean and prepare for our parents’ anniversary celebrations. On Saturday I identified that our router was cooked while trying to set up our recently returned Wii. With about an hour before guests started to arrive, I sped off to Best Buy to get an Airport Extreme to replace our old, toasty Linksys WRT54G. The new router had to be set up and there were a few complications getting our server and other services set up. But I was up and running in time to monitor a major change at work from 11pm to about 2am Sunday. Another couple of hours and our network was back to it’s happy self.

On Saturday my parents came over and Sunday Gina’s parents came over to celebrate their wedding anniversaries and father’s day. Our parents’ anniversaries are bookends to Gina’s birthday (on the day before, the other after) which is on June 18th… exactly one month before my birthday. We feasted on all kind of grilled goodness: fancy chipotle burgers, beer-bbq brats, potatoes, salads, and more. We ended Saturday with a bonfire and s’mores and Sunday with a game of cut-throat Uno.

- Duane