Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   you can buy mirror ball rotators
Thursday, August 22 2013
After a shift at the bookstore in Woodstock, Gretchen drove down to the City, leaving me by myself with the critters (who are always noticeably needier when it's just me for them to focus on — and that includes the cats).
I got a pair of 120 volt mirror ball rotators in the mail today. They'd only been about $10/each, and, if they worked, would definitely be worth it. I've tried so many homebrew solutions to the seemingly-easy task of rotating a mirror ball, but to make a system that is both reliable and quiet seemed to lie outside my capabilities, though at times I've been close (and the exposed system of pulleys, tensioners, and belts can be a thing to behold in itself). Once I had the new rotators and confirmed that they had powerful torque and made essentially no noise, I dismantled all that old improvised crap, which included a small bicycle wheel, a small wheel from the front of a wheelchair, and various arms with pulleys attached. The new rotator was such a huge improvement over the various things I've built that I wondered why I hadn't thought to just buy such a rotator in the past. Perhaps I thought they didn't exist or where prohibitively expensive. But when the alternative to hours or tinkering can be had for the price of a martini in the City, the solution is not expensive.

Alone with my pseudoephedrine and alcohol, I didn't have a lot of good teevee in the DVR, and so I found myself watching the not-very-believable reality show Barter Kings (which I find myself watching more-or-less ironically). The producers tried to spice things up about a year ago by adding a young overly-made-up woman with lots of tats, but it's clear that she's only there for sexist reasons. The one thing that's really good about the show is that one of the guys has Tourette Syndrome, which makes him twitch and make funny noises. But, sadly, he never curses or makes racially-insensitive outbursts (at least not in a way that makes it into the show).
At some point while I was watching Barter Kings, I remembered that I needed to build a small wooden tower like the ones I use for the rain barrels (so they'll produce water with some pressure). Those rain barrel towers were four feet tall, but the lumber I had on hand (consisting of ten foot treated two by fours) suggested a five foot tower. So that was what I built. I had to improvise a bit for the various diagonal struts and tower "decking," but the result was satisfyingly solid and still light enough to move around. It took me about two hours to build.

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