Thursday, November 6, 2008

Me playing my guitar.

This is a bit of neoclassical shred guitar. Played, almost, entirely on the B string. This was recorded by Matt Smith (a.k.a. Ray) at the old Studio McKenna.

I've started to teach "rock" guitar lessons this winter. If you like near Camano Island and are interested drop me an email at I'll be teaching everything from the basics to more advanced soloing like this.

Ebay sucks! Long live Craigslist and Etsy!

This is off-topic for this blog for any of you that follow it, but, I have to rant about this one.

Ebay sucks! For those of you that know me, from time to time I sell on Ebay. It is a way for me to make a little extra cash during the slow season at work. Ebay has seen fit in their infinite wisdom to limit how much you, the seller, can charge for shipping. This may seem like a fair practice at first. But, with Ebay's fees being determined by the listing price and the final selling price, it makes sense that the selling price will be lower to compensate for a higher shipping fee. DUH! The smart shopper takes this into account when buying an item from Ebay. For most sellers it is a way to recoup some of the selling fees. Fees that have gone up and up and up.

Today was the first time I have encountered this regulation. I went to sell a set of 2 reel-to-reel tapes that I purchased at a garage sale this last summer. There is a very limited market for these items and at first I tried to sell them individually but had no luck. So I decided to sell them together as a set for one low price. Then came the listing. I slogged through their NEW AND IMPROVED(?) listing system. That is so slow it's like watching paint dry. When I got to the shipping fees section I was not allowed to put this value over $3.00. Now I don't know if Ebay has done ant of their own shipping lately, but it would cost me much more than the regulated amount to ship this anywhere but my front porch.

So as of today me and my 900+ sales and 99.9% positive rating are going elsewhere. Craigslist and Etsy here I come! I'd even stop using Paypal if I could as Ebay owns that company also. But it is so prevalent I don't think I could do much business on the net without it. So for now Ebay still gets their 3.5% of my internet sales. The Bastards!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Center of the floor joists

Just to show you the center. The rebar is the exactly in the middle.

Floor Joists continued

Here is what the floor joists look like. There is a footing under the center that they all sit on. I also doubled the 2x10 at the outer edge where it get connected to the bracked as it was intended for a 4x4.

Footings and Floor Joists

So I dug holes for the footings and poured the concrete and set the brackets. After that I had a roll of heavy duty black plastic and put that down for weed block. Here is one of the set brackets sticking up through the plastic.

Lazy at posts but not work

So I have been pretty lazy at the posts lately. What can I say. It's summer and it's the busy time of year. So this was what was completed as of July 4th. It's the stub wall that the dome will sit on. I had to do this first so I could find where each of the footings and floor joists will fall.

My wife requested that I move it 10 feet to the north so it is futher away from our gazebo.

You can just make out 11 anchor that I purchased at a garage sale for a whopping $2.00 for all. Pertty good deal being the last ones I found were $6.00 each. I passed those ones by as I felt I could get a better deal at another G-Sale and I did.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Just for the fun of it....

Just for the fun of it I placed the part of the dome I had completed on top of the riser walls. At this point it is about 5 feet tall. And to think I was a little worried about the head room inside.

I just had the idea for modifying the door to have an arch to follow the shape of the dome. I'll have to think about that one. Over in Coopeville there is a resturant that I have taken friends and family to. We usually take the boat over as this is faster than driving across Desception Pass. Inside the resturant is a dorr with a arched top. This has is one of the charms of dining there along with playing chess or another board game.

Riser Walls

Have not made an entry for a little while. But, I have been busy. I've been constructing the riser walls instead of continuing with the dome triangles. With the hubs for the triangles being made of PVC they have a little too much flex and I need it to be solid so I can get a proper placement of the rebar stakes. The walls are first screwed together with 2 deck screws for proper alignment of the walls. Then I add a few galvinized nails to further secure them together.
The riser wall is 18 inches. This will give me enought heigth for a regular size door. Each end of the walls are cut at a 12 degree angle. So the angle difference between one wall and the next is 24 degrees. The pattern for the riser walls is the same as the triangles. It is a B-C-C-B-C-C... pattern until the the circle is complete. Log onto the Desert Domes site for a complete explanation of how this works. Check out the v3 dome as this is the one I am building.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Building the levels

This is the first level of triangles that will sit on the stub walls. Being I don't have blueprints, and I can't find info on how to calculate the placement of the footings, I'm building the base level of the dome. The part sitting on the ground will be sitting on 18 inch stub walls. The stakes will mark where I need to dig for the foundation. I hope to have the whole circumference done by the end of the week.
Being it is lees than 200 square feet and less than $5000 I can bypass the county for permits and inspections.

3rd Load of Free Lumber

So here was the haul from the third trip to Walt's new house. The poor old Mazda is sagging just a little from all the weight. The long 2x4's strapped to the top are 12 and 14 footers! Just have to remove a few nails. All of this lumber was headed to the burn pile before I asked them to save it for me!!! I definitely have enough to frame the whole thing now.

More Free Wood

I went by the building site again today and picked up another load of wood. I'll go back later today and pick up the rest of what they are going to give me. I might have enough to frame the whole thing. We'll see.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Free Load of Wood

I happened by a new house being built here on the island and asked the site boss if he had any scap wood that I could have. This is what I ended up with and he said I could come back for more. I'll have to remove the nails from it but whats a little work for free building materials.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Recording Studio

I thought I'd show the old recording studio so it can be compared to the new one when it is done.
On the left is the computer in a cool rackmount server case. I use Fruityloops for programming the drum patterns and synth lines. For audio recording I use Cubase SX.
On the right I have my NEW pocket POD from Line 6. What a huge improvement over the old effects unit. The sounds are totally amazing. Next to it is my NEW recording interface by Tascam, the FireOne. It only has 2 mic preamps and one instrument input, but they are crystal clear for recording. Next to that is my OLD Behringer mixer. Right now I don't have a use for it because I plug straight into the FireOne.
On top of the bridge I have JBL monitors. I was very fortunate to find these at an estate sale for very cheap. They sound so much better than the old KLH's. You can hear all the details in the music.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Garage sale finds

Over the weekend My wife and I enjoy going to all the garage sales here on Camano Island. We scan the local newspaper for listing and decide to where to head first. We usually leave the house around 7:30 or 8:00 and don't return home until noon or so.

This weekend I picked up a 3 way light fixture($3.00), a single light fixture(free) and a small half round window($3.00), which might end up in the door.

Total cost so far $6.00

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Free Doors,window and PVC

Last night I picked 3 free doors and a free window frame without glass. My wife saw them posted on Free-cycle. I'll use one of the doors for the dome and Have offered one of the others to a friend for a door for his treehouse. I'll post some pics of them this weekend.
Last week I picked up a 30 inch length of 3 inch I.D. PVC pipe at a construction site. This is the size I am using for the "hubs" of the triangles. I should get another 8 to 10 of these out of this piece.

Also I picked up a light fixture at a garage sale today. A whopping 3 dollars. So far, other than gas this is the most I have spent on the whole project. Tomorrow my wife and I will hit a few more garage and yard sales to see what else I can find for cheap or free.

Total cost so far $0.00

Free wood to build my dome

This is the B-C-C triangle from the previous entry. It's now "covered" from the top pieces of the pallet. I used 1 1/2 inch screws to anchor them in place. Since the wood will split when adding screws that close to the edge I had to pre-drill holes. Luckly I had 2 drills. One setup with the drill bit and the other with the phillips bit for driving in the screw.

This will be the last triangle I make until the foundation is done and the riser walls are complete. Since this is a small dome I'll be using concrete footings instead of a full foundation.

Here is a good site that has a lot of good info and pictures


Construction begins

So I was compelled to build something and the dome hit me. After sitting on the idea for about 5 years I finally have started! It will be a 3V dome that is 14 feet in diameter.

For those of you that don't know what a 3V is check out the Desert Domes site I have a link for at the right hand side of the page.
I'm using (or re-using) wood from pallets. As I have access to a good supply of them from work and local warehouses. Many of these are made from oak.

The hub is a 3 1/2 dia PVC conduit pipe cut to 3 inches in length. This particular triangle is for the 6 sided portion of the dome. Each hub has 2 holes drilled into it every 60 degrees. The 2x4 is cut at a 12 degree angle at each end.

The 5 sided portions of the dome will have the ends cut at a 10 degree angle and the center hub will have the holes drilled at 72 degrees.
The PVC pipe was left over from a potato canon we built a couple of years ago. Total cost $0.00

Building a model of the dome

So about 5 years ago I had an idea to build a geodessic dome as a music recording studio. I was inspired after taking a tour through a newly built dome here on Camano Island. What struck me about the structure was the accoustics. Totally amazing. About a year later I built a model out of foam core board just to see what it would be like. It measured 36 inches in diameter. My daughter JJ is pictured next to it.