July 19 , 2013
Well, it's official, i'm now no longer connected to my old corporate employer, last friday was my las paycheque !.. i'm on my own once again !.. Sort of feels like finishing college, but this time I have a direction, a purpose, goals, ambitious one's to say the least....
On tuesday I applied for EI ( Employment Insurance ), for the first time ever, I might get to take back some of the money i've been giving to the system.. This is all new to me and there are lots to learn about the process, 2 week waiting periods, Records Of Employment, blah blah blah.... but given my income status at the moment, i'll take anything I can get.
For the last few months i've been working on an order of ebike kits, over the last number of years i've tested and used just about every brand, type and size kit available on the market and I know what I want... something " Simple " ....
What exactly would someone consider " simple " .. ?
Hmm.. I don't want to give away too much right now, but decisions have been made, money has been spent, boat is on it's way !
On a personal note, I'm an uncle again !.. yay !!!.. my younger sister had her 2nd child this week, a healthy boy !.. and the family grows..
May 27 , 2013
And another month just blew by, having been home since late November 2012 and loving life to the fullest, i find the weeks passing very quickly... I really noticed the seasons change and weather changes, it's full on spring and pollen season is at it's worst, rain rain and more rain the last 2 weeks, i'd love to go for a ride but rain falls every hour or so lol.. bah.. not a problem as i have lots of chores to keep me busy at home and loving every minute of it regardless of the weather.
Dusted off my old Wine equipment.
I love beer, spirits, wine, well .. let's face it.. i like to drink.. yeah i said it.. lol.. but paying liquor store prices.. not the best way to go on a budget.. so a trip to costco and a kit to make 60 bottles of wine for 50$ .. hell yeah !
I've managed to build up a very large collection of electric bike related stuff over the years and getting it all sorted in one shot, has proven to be impossible.. I"m constantly working on a project on top of a previous one and parts get mixed up.. after a while it becomes impossible to track down the owner of each nut, screw and bolt.. so they pile up.. I have a 10 lb bucket in the garage with " the mix " in it.. one of these days i'll try to find the courage and sort it ALL.. oh man..
April 16, 2013
Big day today !
Fedex delivery man just arrived to drop off my prototype kit. For those of you who have been following my projects page you know i'm a big fan of high power ebikes, more, MORE, MOOORE power ... Yeah, more power is fun, but it's also more expensive and dangerous. After spending lots of years testing, destroying, and rebuilding, putting all that into perspective means the logical step to the mass ebike users requires lower power, lower cost, lower complexity.. There will always be a time and place for higher power but my focus for the moment is to iron out a proper setup for the middle class.
March 25, 2013
Monday !.. never thought I would love monday so much, after hating that day of the week for so many years. incredible...
Over the last few days, i've been working on my electric BMX and finally got it working, this is a dual motor mini bike.. and it's a whole lot of fun !
Because a bmx only has 1 speed, no shifters, the rear wheel is 110mm instead of the usual 135mm on standard bicycle frames.... a rear motor will not fit, so I used two front motors.. While cleaning out my room of bike stuff, I found a box from 2008, unopened, surprise surprise, it's two identical controllers I got from ebay and completely forgot I had.
It took me a while to figure out the right color combination between the motor and controller and throttle, in the process I managed to accidentally launch this bike across my kitchen and nearly broke the glass on my stove lol... but no skid marks on the floor, this time.
Been working on the science of making bread, I love bread, ever since I was a kid, actually i'm pretty sure that's how many of us relate to special things in our lives, the things that get entrenched in us when we were younger.. ( not that I consider myself old, in my mid thirties ) . I remember the smell of fresh baking bread at my grandmother's house, she cooked it almost daily, mixed with the smell of my grandfather's cigarette smoke lol..
After weeks of interrogation, i've found a whole lot of people who know how to make a loaf, or loaves, but not very many, well, actually, none, that could tell my why they did certain things, or failed to mention key steps in their process of making bread that seemed natural to them since this is how they were " shown " ..
It's all in the details, something I know all too well, having plenty of experience in the field of phone support.. Never assume someone knows " obvious " details, always try to be as detailed as possible while keeping the instructions short and precise.
So, after all that, I think i'm going to start work on an ebook and write a how to make bread manual !
My neighbor thinks i'm nuts but I made a deal with her, when my ebook sales reach 1,000,000$, she owes me a plaque that reads
" Making bread is not a science " .
March 20, 2013
1st day of spring !.. and a snow storm.
After getting the shovel and snow blower out, worked up a good sweat, out here in Atlantic Canada, one shovel is not good enough, you need the right arsenal for different conditions.
1- Deep shovel for picking up snow, aluminum is light but strong enough to break up crusty packed snow..
2- Small scraper, good for clearing around the stairs and pushing snow out of areas that you can't reach with the blower
3- Medium width pushing scraper, when there is a light snow fall, less than a few inches deep.
4- Wide scraper for light duty snow, when the blower is not needed.
5- The Blower, for when things get nasty, 2 stage 12hp, a must have unless you want to pay someone with a tractor..
So now that the eBMX is functional again, I was able to test it yesterday, it's time to try something different. What's better than 1 motor on a bmx ?.. well.. how about 2 motors !
Since I happen to have a 2nd controller, and a 2nd motor sitting on the floor next to me here, may as well have a go at dual wheel drive !
March 17, 2013
No beer this year, for me, but I did have red wine !
It's been a while since i've updated this blog, like ... a month.
Enjoying a nice vacation, that's the short version I guess ...
If this is a glimpse of what retirement is like, it's awsome !
Weeks go by quickly, I have actually stopped wearing a wrist watch..After years of military like training at a call centre..
Be On Time !!!
Right now, time of day makes no difference... I get up when i'm awake, eat when i'm hungry, do all the house tasks, walk Sandy a few times a day, catch up on all tv series episodes i've missed, and more, drinking lots of K cups, man, those things are great.. if you dont got a keurig and drink coffee, stop reading and check it out.
Weather is getting nicer, I've been out a few times on the trike and other bikes to keep the battery packs awake, and it's fun .. winter is not over, yet, but i'm hopefull...
Sunday, got up shortly after 8am, this is strange to me since until recently i've always been a night owl and sleep in until 10 person.. is this what age does to you ?
Today, I fix the E-BMX
Last season, cold winter day I got dressed in my ski-doo suit for a late night ride, well lit with a pair of Cycle Lumenators . Plugged the battery in and BAM, huge sparks and flying molten plastic pieces, it's surprising how I still react to things like this but not nearly as bad as years ago, something like this would have left me with a high heartbeat rate for an hour and force me to have a glass of water...
So, the e-BMX has been upside down in my garage for the last many months.
Took it in the kitchen to thaw out, in the kitchen worksop, yeah, i'm single and can get away with this ! My walls have black dots where handlebars reach, and my floors have skid marks of bicycle tires... but it sure as hell beats paying for a store front of office/workshop, so that's that for now.
Pulled the motor off, tested, ok. great. Pretty amazing, i've put that motor thru a fair share of real hell, copper coils covered in JB weld, rim has a few small cracks in it but should last one more season.
Discovered 2 controllers while cleaning my stash of parts to clear out Products / garage sale
And of course, it's one of those, make "A" work with "B: problems, 8 motor wires, 3 throttle wires, per side, and all different colors... I got lucky, only took me about an hour on the bench, then took it to the bike and realized I forgot to take notice of what direction the motor turns ..
Shoot.. remove the wheel and head back on the bench, connect all those wires again, back to the bike... done.
Then, solder everything with proper connectors because A is using one type, and so is B.. and I hate them both... cheap imitation and poorly installed connectors are the devil. These problems show up mid way thru a huge hill on the way home against the wind, and it starts to rain 5 kms form home base......
Anyways, got all that sorted, I then disccover the wires from the throttle, already on the bike, are not the same colors as the one's I tested on the bench... so more testing and probing. I managed to accidentally short out the throttle wires and the bike came to life at full throttle for a second, zipped across the kitchen, real fast, and hit the stove.
Got a proper stand this time, wheel off the ground for testing ( usually I would flip the bike upside down, but since i'm working on the throttle.. ).. so fixed that and a few other bits, got the bike ready to go....
Blue skies, sun, cold but dry, I noticed the front tire valve all sideways, but the tire is inflated, I either stopped so hard it made the tire spin on the rim, or might have been drinking the day I changed it. Both are entirely possible, but either way, fixed that too.
Put together a battery pack from odd's and end's laying on the dining room table.. lol.
Tape it up, in a backpack, coat, gloves, helmet, backpack, head for the door with the bike under my arm.. and would you believe it, SNOW... !!!...
Like, not a flake, or a slight " drizzle ", no more than 3 minutes passed since I had last looked out the window, but in the blink of an eye , it's a white out.
What do you do in a case like this ?
You get out there and test the new bike !
But accelerate slowly ! as you set off on your test ride.
( ok, seriously, if anyone is actually reading this blog, and you put together an ebike of your very own ?.. well.. wait for a nice sunny day, with dry pavement, helmet, lift the motor wheel off the ground and test the throttle and brakes ( not at the same time ), make sure all wires are properly tucked in, check the BRAKES.... and then have a slow first minute of ride, then come home. check your nuts ( hmpf ) and make sure all nuts and bolts are tight.. )
ok, so I got to go for a ride, but only for 2 minutes before it became obvious how bad of an idea this was.. parked it in the garage, dusted the snow off, shut the garage door and walked to the house, noticed the snow slowed down to like almost nothing... and by the time I got my coat off, it was sunny again !...