Altmuligmann, Handyman.

Nok en gang en altmuligmann.
Only this time it’s disconnecting and removing an old split plastic 220 lb domestic furnace oil tank from a 3 foot high platform. Easy eh? Just Push!!

No, a controlled lift down is called for as it is sat directly opposite a hell of a lot of GLASS!

Then the ground work and platform needed extending by 18 inches to accommodate the new longer tank, and the VERY HEAVY 360 lb bunded tank (that comes delivered and strapped to a standard wood pallet), needs mounting and connecting up.


Only here’s the crunch, the equipment list.
A dozen medium density blocks (17 x 8 x 4 inch),
A couple of 4 foot concrete lintels,
A 20 inch square 2 inch thick paving slab,
Two 12 inch lengths of 2 x 2 inch fencing posts,
A seasoned plank (12 inches wide, 1 inch thick, and 5 feet long),
My little car bottle jack with a magnificent lift of 6 inches,

And the help of someone who can’t touch his toes let alone lift a lot.

Care to have a stab on how to do it?
How to carry out a controlled lift of the old one to the ground and the new one up into place? I’ll give you a clue, you’ll need maths to use the 6 inch lift jack.

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Why use words?


I’ll keep it simple as English
Isn’t their first language
In a lot of cases.

GO TAKE Aflyunited

Simple Enough?

I’ll walk my dog in my country when and where I want.
I will however point out all objectors
That he loves foreign food.


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The importance of long wave

Broadcast radio has gone through a bit of a revolution in the last decade in the UK.
Now as standard, FM radio is the norm, Medium wave is a novelty, and as for long wave? Well in broadcast terms the UK is waiting for its last few valves to die in the main transmission centre, and that will be an end to it.

Effectively the long distance transmissions of BBC will end because they cannot (or probably more accurate) WILL NOT spend money of maintaining a system of transmission that virtually covers the whole of the UK and most of the world.

So where is LW on the radio dial?
Simply anything under the 540 KHz bottom setting of most broadcast receivers.
And there are plenty of stations to choose from!

The rest of the world is more ‘switched on’ and long wave (with its ground hugging, long ranges) stations abound. Why? Because they know they need less transmitters to cover a wider area than FM or digital can. Here’s a quick listing but there are plenty more! Mostly spaced 9 KHz apart.

Freq Station Name Transmitter Site Power (Watts)
153 Romania Actualitata Brasov Bod 1200000
153 Deutschlandfunk Donebach 500000
162 France Inter Allouis 2000000
164 Mongolyn Radio Khonkhor 500000
171 R Mediterranee Int’l Nador 2000000
177 Deutschlandradio Kultur Zehlendorf 500000
180 TRT-4 Polatli 1200000
180 GTRK Kamchatka / R Rossii Petropavlovsk 150000
183 Europe 1 Felsberg 2000000
189 GRTK Amur / R Rossii Belogorsk 1200000
198 BBC Radio 4 Droitwich 500000
207 Deutschlandfunk Aholming 500000
207 Ukrainske Radio 1 Kyiv 125000
209 Mongolyn Radio Dalanzadgad 75000
216 R Monte Carlo Roumoules 2000000
216 Tsentr Rossii / GRTK Krasnoyarskaya Krasnoyarsk 150000
225 Polskie Radio P1 Solec Kujawski 1200000
227 Mongolyn Radio Altai 75000
234 RTL Beidweiler 2000000
243 Primorskoe R / R Rossii Razdolnoe 500000
252 RTE Radio 1 Clarkstown 300000
261 R Rossii Taldom 2500000
270 Cesky rozhlas 1 Topolna 650000
279 Turkmen Radio 1 Asgabat 150000

So why doesn’t everyone push long wave?
Why FM-VHF all the time?
The sound quality is better in FM. Wow!
If you are trying to listen to a long-range broadcast, AM (and its big brother SSB) is better.
Range wise, it takes more power to keep enough signal present for a FM radio to work.
AM is prone to fading and noise though, but a good AM receiver will allow you to hear the tiniest of fading signal. Simple keying an AM signal on and off will allow you to transmit Morse Code while receiving a weak FM signal may not have enough power to “turn the receiver on”.

Conclusions. FM-VHF sucks for survival purposes!

One final bit.
AM receivers can be simple to make i.e. Something in Crystal.

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A fine upstanding politically stable member of NATO , let alone a prospective member of the European Union, BUT there is this thing to talk about.

The mass arrests of:-
Department (number)
Public servants (35000)
Education (15000)
Police (8800)
Soldiers (6000)
Judiciary  (2700)
University deans (1500)
Religious affairs (492)
PM’s office staff (257)
Generals  (100)

A total of 69849 who it would seem were involved with the failed military coup.
That’s a lot of hate!

After that a question could arise on how many will be able to walk (ever again) after “co-operating” with Erdoğan‘s enforcers.

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Low Tech Wailer

Today’s water craft BY LAW should have a sound signalling device to transmit signals.
The Merchant Shipping (Distress Signals and Prevention of Collisions) Regulations 1996. aka The COLREGS

Rule 32
(a)   The word “whistle” means any sound signalling appliance capable of producing the prescribed blasts and which complies with the specifications in Annex III to these Regulations.
(b)   The term “short blast” means a blast of about one second’s duration.
(c)   The term “prolonged blast” means a blast of from four to six seconds’ duration.

Rule 33
Equipment for sound signals
(a)   A vessel of 12 metres or more in length shall be provided with a whistle, a vessel of 20 metres or more in length shall be provided with a bell in addition to a whistle

It’s important in all sorts of ways including it gives you the ability to transmit Morse code. The simple system of signalling that was scrapped a while ago as the world’s maritime (idiotic) leaders fell in love with electronic based signalling.

morse code

A dash is three times the length of a dot.
The duration of a dash is three times the duration of a dot. Each dot or dash is followed by a short silence, equal to the dot duration. The letters of a word are separated by a space equal to three dots (one dash), and the words are separated by a space equal to seven dots.

On our boat the blaster is simply a car horn. Wow, how high-tech is that.
Only in our case it decided to fail out on the water, miles from anywhere,  RIGHT WHEN IT WAS NEEDED THE MOST i.e. with some prize prat trying to pour the last dregs of a wine bottle down his throat, drunk as a skunk, and totally oblivious to the 6½ tonne boat bearing down on his fibreglass ‘gin palace’ 20 foot cruiser!

Low-tech rules! (Well some of the time).
What is shown is two fog horns, one steel, and my personal favourite, dead low-tech, a plastic tube L75mm x D44mm with a bit of plastic stuck over one end that chucks out an incredible 100 dB howl.

Well it always has, right up till then when the plastic split on first puff!


One thought that did cross my mind was firing a red flare AT HIM but then I thought:-
“Why waste a flare!”drunk

So what do you do to fix low-tech in a hurry?
Cue the humble nitrile medical inspection glove.
The plastic horn pops apart without tooling, so the glove was jammed in, the lid crammed back on and I let rip with about 20 yards to go. All within 20 yards at 4 knots.

The result was an immediate reaction” to say the least. Drunken sod!
There should be a law about booze and boats i.e. NOT ALLOWED!

OK, so was that the end of it?
Nope, it’s been a week of idiots and needing to warn others that some things in life don’t just get out of their way because they have got a more expensive toy than yours is!

Basic Sound signals
One short blast       I am altering course to starboard (to the right)
Two short blasts     I am altering course to port (to the left)
Three short blasts  My engines are going astern (but I may still be moving forward)
One 10 second blast     WTF are you doing!

When overtaking
Two long blasts followed by one short blast  “overtaking starboard side”
Two long blasts followed by two short blasts “overtaking port side”

Restricted visibility
Under power and moving,  not more than 2 minutes, one long blast.
Under power but stopped,  not more than 2 minutes, two long blasts 2 seconds apart.

It’s not rocket science as is keeping a watch out for others when on the water BUT all common sense goes to pot, vaporizes, or simply vanishes when you ADD ALCOHOL!

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CB talk for Out of Service,
Gone away, Not in.
Or to be exact:-
A couple of days on the river
Away from the world.
No PC’s, mobile phones, naught!

(Try not to screw it up too much people)

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Better to Have

A friend of ours is constantly amazed by the amount of multi-purpose bits and pieces we carry. My response was “What you don’t buy things with multi-use in mind, how strange?”

Then I saw his tool storage
3 large cantilever toolboxes stacked full of (surprisingly enough) tools.
No wonder his SWMBO moans a lot.

9″  high, 12 ” deep, 16 inches long.
Inside is a simple tool roll, 4″ diameter, 8 inches long.
And that’s what gets used the most.
Although SWMBO moans about that occasionally!
I reckon that’s got to be a girlie thing.

It’s the same when going out.
The pack goes into the car with a change of clothing, water, and munches.
Pretty much a standard EDC load including rain gear and sun screen.
It’s sunny why the rain gear? Why sun screen and it’s raining?
My response always “Better to have but not want than want but don’t have.

So is that prepping, a ‘just in case’ mindset, or OTT?
Take your pick but how do you know your journey is going to end how you planned it?
With that scenario in your mind, doesn’t it seem prudent to plan for the worst?

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