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Everything posted by jgradyc

  1. I just finished 48 Hours by William Forstchen, author of One Second After. It's a pre-apocalypse book about the last 48 hours before a massive solar flare might hit earth, resulting in an extinction event. It's an outstanding premise, but the plot doesn't live up to the promise. If you're interested in prepping or survivalist books, this isn't a good book. It about how the head of security at a civilian bunker reacts as martial law is established and government bureaucrats try to take over the facility. I enjoy prepping and survivalist books because I can sometimes learn something useful, but this book had none of those aspects. Plus, the hero's rationale for who gets to come into the bunker seems unrealistic. Readers familiar with One Second After and One Year After will see some character similarities.
  2. I'm still waiting to hear from Coleman Tractor. I dropped it off to be fixed two weeks ago! It broke because the spindle had obviously cracked a year or more in the past. I could tell because there was rust on part of the break and fresh metal on other parts of the crack. I was mowing on a hillside and the stress on the downhill side was apparently enough to make it crack the rest of the way. Why did it crack a year or more ago? I don't know. Maybe there was a hairline flaw in the metal.
  3. Thanks! I didn't know it was called a spindle. I'll take the part in today to get it repaired. I'm thinking of taking it to Coleman Tractor Company (the old McHenry tractor place) in Nashville this morning with the video of the axle. That part is $185 online. I doubt if I'll come out of this for less than $500. We'll see.
  4. I wish tractor repair was as easy for me as computer stuff. Here's a resized video of the axle play. Is this a problem? Regardless, I think another problem is in the hub shown in the video below this one.. You can hear it grinding. Play in axle QVGA15fpsQlow.mp4
  5. I got it! I put a 2x4 on the axle and tapped it all around until there was a tiny gap at the bottom. I sprayed the dowel with WD40 and wedged a narrow blade screwdriver in the gap and worked my way around until it was separated at the top too. Then, I rocked it back and forth until it just slid off. I can hear a noise when I spin the removed hub by hand so I think there's problem is in the hub, but I'm concerned about the axle, too. When I twist it by hand, it moves about 1/8 of a turn. When I push it, it moves in and out about 1/2 inch. Is it supposed to do that? I'm trying to get a video small enough to attach. I'll post it soon.
  6. Thanks, that's it. I don't know what the dowel does, but there is a raised area on the bottom of the case where the dowel probably fits on the inside. I imagine a good whack would remove it. It's probably just stuck because there appears to be nothing left to hold it on. I've removed the four mounting bolts. I just don't want to break it taking it off. If I can get it off, I can take it in to get repaired. It doesn't look like it would be hard to reattach, but then I've never done this. Thanks,
  7. I have 2009 Kubota B3030HSD. The axle/hub sheered off while mowing the yard this morning. I've removed the 4 bolts that hold the hub assembly to the axle (just below the yellow fill cap in the photo) , but I can't get it off. The seams appear to have been painted over. I've tried tapping it lightly with a hammer, but I don't want to break it. How do I get it off? The reason I'm taking it off here is that seal where the hub joins the axle is also leaking so I want take it in to get both things fixed at one time.
  8. I tried PBR Easy... their new "light" beer. I like PBR, but PBR Easy wasn't good.
  9. The highest crime I could come up with under Tennessee law is Section 39-14. ... ... Littering.
  10. In an article in the NYTimes, she said she went out for a short hike. That's why she didn't take her phone or water bottle. She went off the trail to rest and got turned around trying to get back to the trail. (I'm guessing she just had to potty and didn't want to say that.) Once she realized she was lost, she decided to "follow her intuition because her intuition was so good." (Not joking. That's pretty much what she said.) Then, on the third day, she fell off a cliff and fractured her leg and lost her shoes in a flash flood. (I'm not sure of the order of these events.) By then, she had wandered about 4 miles outside the initial 1.5 mile radius search area. In short, she did almost everything wrong.
  11. If an EMP hits, you won't need maps. Your world will shrink to a 10 mile or so radius. Old cars will quickly be worthless because gasoline won't be available. Everyone will be on foot, except for bicycles. Old yard-sale bicycles will be worth their weight in gold if the grid shutdown continues for more than a week.
  12. Hmm. I have three lights with the button on the side. They're Xanes cheapo18650 LED lights for about $7. They have one side button that is clicked once to turn on to bright, again to switch to low, again to change to strobe, and again to turn off. They're floodies with a sliding lens to zoom from spot to flood. They're adequate for indoors, but weak compared to the other lights I mentioned. I hate them. I can never find the side button when I want to turn them on or change the brightness. The BLF Q8 has a side button, too, but it glows green in the dark so it's not as bad. To each his own, I guess...
  13. I'm not sure what you mean by a tail cap switch with a separate switch mode. The Convoy, Astrolux, and BLF A6 have a tail cap switch. There is no separate switch for modes. You just keep clicking the tail cap to switch from one mode to the other. The BLF A6 is programmable to start in your preferred mode. The default is to start in firefly. From there, you can half click to low, half click to med, and half click to high, and so on. Or, you can skip straight from firefly to turbo with a click to turn it on and a quick full click to go to turbo. You can program it to bypass the blinking modes entirely. That's what I do.
  14. I have the older Convoy S2. I think it's been replaced by the S2+. The difference between the S2 and the S3 is the LED. I think everything else is the same. The Convoy S2, S3, Astrolux (something), and (Astrolux) BLF A6 share the same frames. I've had the Convoy S2 for six years... good, dependable light, but it has only three non-blinking modes: high, med, and low. The BLF A6 has 5 non-blinking modes: turbo, high, med, low, and firefly. The Convoy, Astroxlux, and BLF all have tail standing, clicky tail caps. As hughd pointed out, budgetlightforum.com is the place to go to get inexpensive flashlight reviews.
  15. The BLF A6 is a group-buy flashlight designed by gurus on BudgetLightForum about 4 years ago. It's currently on sale for $17.99 in black (~$21 in the non-anodized aluminum look). I have four of these lights. They are the brightest one 18650 LED light you can buy. I much prefer the 6500K 1A bulb, but the neutral is okay. The yellow is too yellow for my taste. A year ago, I posted on BudgetLightForum to ask what I could buy that was brighter than the BFL A6 in one 18650. Multiple replies said, "Nothing. It's the brightest and most variable you can find." It has a turbo mode that lights up the night and even a firefly mode that's great for walking around the bedroom without disturbing your spouse. The Chinese company is a major vendor at BudgetLightForum and this is a quality LED light. I've had one failure out of my four lights in four years. It was the tailcap. I replaced it for $2. Shipping will take about two weeks if you pay the extra ~$1.50 for faster shipping. https://www.banggood.com/BLF-A6-XPL-1600Lumens-74modes-EDC-LED-Flashlight-18650-p-991823.html?rmmds=search&ID=518106&cur_warehouse=CN PS. While on bangood's website, check out the BLF Q8 powered by four 18650 batteries. This thing is bright... as in car headlights on high beam bright. It's currently only $49. PPS I have the Convoy version of the BLF A6. It's not as bright or as programmable. Since the BLF A6 can occasionally be bought on sale for $17.99, you might as well get it over the Convoy.
  16. This is a very rural area. Two hundred yards would typically only be a shot from one hillside to the other. This is also a very hilly area. I'd set up so the shot would have a hill 100-200 feet high as a barrier and so that any homes would be behind me. Maximum sight range would probably be 200 yards. A safe shot would be less in the summer due to more vegetation. Plus, I'm not a great shot. I'd want a much closer shot, but I'm just giving the maximum range for information purposes. I'm thinking set up would be relatively easy. Prevailing winds are typically from the west. The coyotes live to the west and north. There are several thousand acres of hilly forest to the west. "Shots fired" made me laugh. Shots are fired nearly every day and sometimes at night by neighbors doing target practice or whatever. The only thing that might bring a police response out here would be return fire!
  17. Coyotes have taken a few pets in my area and recently gave us a real scare with our cat. I'm not a hunter nor do I like to hunt, but I've been told by local animal control that I can shoot them on my land. I've only seen them at dusk or just after dark. My question is how can I see them at 100-200 yards in low light? We occasionally have loose dogs that wander around so I have to see clearly enough to distinguish between a dog and a coyote. I just looked into night scopes and was shocked to see prices in the $2,500 range. That's way outside my budget. My questions are 1) how can I see them 2) where can I learn the basics of coyote hunting 3) how do I ensure I don't break any TN laws. (All my neighbors support this, by the way.)
  18. This is a Gen 3, not 4, right? I need the replaceable back grip to fit my hand.
  19. If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, the old Hi Point C9 rated a 1 on my 1 to 10 scale. This new C9 is a solid 3... maybe 3.5. It now falls into the "I wouldn't be embarrassed to show it someone" category. Okay, maybe I'd be a little embarrassed, but for less than $200, I could deal with it.
  20. Is it just me or is that a really ugly grip on the ZEV?
  21. I laughed when I read the survey. Do you carry a gun in your car? If so, is it loaded? If so, is it locked? Do you wear a Fitbit... etc. I suggest a follow-up question. 5. If you don't carry in your car loaded and unlocked, does your Fitbit, Nike Sports Watch, or Apple Watch indicate that you can run faster than 1,000 feet per second?
  22. I bought two Coast FL74 LED headlamps for $19.95 at Home Depot over the holidays. They use 3 AAA batteries and go from flood to zoom tight beam. Outstanding headlamps for the money. The low mode is great for working under a dash or sink where a bright light would blind you. Medium is good for hiking. High is good for night running or even night cycling. I don't know if you can still order them on the Home Depot website, but I'd highly recommend them if you like headlamps. I tested five headlamps for our Hood to Coast running relay team last summer with two models costing $45. These Coast lights wing hands down and they are easier to operate. I previously posted about how much I like the 18650 battery BLF A6 flashlight. I have 4 BLF A6 that I ordered from Banggood for about $19.95 each on sale. I posted over at BudgetLightForum and asked if there was anything better that the BLF A6 at its price point (normally $25-$30). They said no... and these guys are total flashlight geeks. What I like most is that it has a firefly mode... a very low output that's great for moving around in the bedroom without waking up my wife. The turbo mode is amazingly bright. I bought four A6 over the years. I've had one tailcap failure, but otherwise they all are still working. Caveat: I don't drop flashlights or mount them on firearms so I can't comment on their reliability in those circumstances. My keychain lights are the Astrolux 01 and the ThruNite Ti3, both are 1 AAA but both will take rechargeable 10440 3.7v batteries. That roughly doubles the brightness. EDITED The BLF A6 is currently $21.95 and that includes a Samsung 18650 battery. Do not buy the 5A tint. It is yellow and noticeably weaker. I prefer the 1A tint. https://www.banggood.com/BLF-A6-XPL-1600LM-74modes-EDC-LED-Flashlight-INR18650-30Q-Battery-p-1088818.html?rmmds=search&ID=518106&cur_warehouse=CN
  23. I never set New Year Resolutions, but every year in December, I do a "How Goes It" review of the year. It's mostly a review of my running. I list successes, failures, injuries and current status of injuries, lessons learned, and goals for the New Year. The Lessons Learned is always the longest. I never set resolutions, per se... just goals.

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