Archer 61-2780A power strip light flashing

The Archer Six outlet power strip with spike protector and broadband noise filter has a light on it that states
"Light indicates spike protector is functioning. If light is out unit must be replaced or repaired."
First this is bullshit. The light is just a power indicator. Second the light is blinking because it is a neon light and they wear out over time. So in all actuality you can ignore it However! if you wish to repair it here is how:
Acquire a neon bulb of similar size I used an NE2 and a proper 100k resistor for said bulb. Remove power from the unit (unplug it)! You will need to remove 2 screws on each end that are on the bottom of the bracket. You may have to remove 4 screws from one side. They have a square head socket and take a special bit. it is not a normal square head, and may not be a Robertson bit.I used a smallish philips and applied a lot of pressure while turning them. Then remove the bottom plate. Once opened you will see something like this:

There will be 2 screws holding the circuit board down and some spade connectors. remove the 2 screws and the spade connectors (noting where they were connected). Next  Located the neon bulb and it's resistor mine are in the picture below circled in green.

on the opposite side of the circuit board de-solder the bulb (red oval) and resistor (Green circles), if your bulb uses the same resistor leave the old one.

Install new bulb and resistor (if needed) and solder them in place, do not push the neon bulb all the way through the hole. Make sure the neon bulb wires are not touching each other and install the circuit board back in the plug strip.

Carefully push the neon bulb through the hole as far as it will go. double check your wires are not touching, and re-attach the spade connectors to the switch and board. If the spade connectors are loose use a pair of pliers to lightly squash the female connector before installing them.

close everything up. I replaced the proprietary screws with regular screws of a similar size. Apply power. When switched on the bulb should glow and no longer flicker. If it still flickers or does not glow you messed up somewhere, your replacement bulb maybe bad, and I cannot help you.


Earth Fissures in Queen Creek

While looking up information on geological formations of Arizona I stumbled on a map overlay for google earth that shows the location of known surface fissures in Arizona.
The nearest fissure to me that would be easy to get to is at  33.207964°,-111.728298°
But as you can see the top 90% of the area has been bulldozed flat recently for houses.
So we went to a different location located at:  33.200071°,-111.618853°
here is the google earth view with the overlay:
Those black areas that look like holes in the ground...

Are indeed holes in the ground, approximately 10 to 15 foot deep. It's hard to tell because we did not want to get too close to the edge lest the sides cave in.
What causes them? one theory is excessive pumping of ground water.
More information can be found here,  the map overlay can be got here.


Dataframe XP 30 Power Supply won't start

I have an old Supermac dataframe xp 30 external scsi hard drive case. I wanted to use the power supply to power hard drives without having to plug them in to a case power supply.

I pulled the switching power supply out of its case and went to test it. The PS would not start and would just pulse, causing the fan to twitch and pulse on and off. I had not powered the device on in 10 plus years.

To make this very short after much testing I found that the power supply MUST have a considerable load on it, or it will not start. The fan and LED are not enough. Connecting a hard drive to it and it powered up fine.

Also the following items can be replaced with other components as listed:
2SK538 N channel Mosfet can be replaced with an FQP9N90C.
UA431 Adjustable Precision Shunt Regulator can be replaced with a TL431 or KA431.

The Blue POT VR1 adjusts the 12 volt power supply.

I do not know the ratings of the power supply but the hard drive in it was rated at 1 amp on the 5 volt supply and .68 amps on the 12 volt. I suspect it may be able to handle 2 amps on both but have not tested it.


Regency R1090 Scanner Owners manual

Regency R1090 Scanner Owners manual PDF


When it asks you to login or create an account click X in the upper right.
Then Click Download in the upper right corner next to sign up.


Windows task bar is on top of full screen video or games

Windows 10 task bar is on top of full screen video or games.

This happened to me recently. I could not figure it out for a while, there are all sorts of "fixes" on the internet about it.

I got a clue that reminded me that I had changed the resolution of one of my monitors to something other than normal, and back again. restarting explorer did not fix the issue. I logged off and back on again and now it is back to normal.


Hum in class D Sure Amplifier

I have a Sure 2 X 100Watt Dual Channel Class D HiFi Power Audio Amplifier Board - AA-AB32971 that I built as an amplifier for my computer.

I was having trouble with hum especially when the LED lights in my laundry room were turned on, or the wife ran a vacuum cleaner in the back room.

Also sometimes for no apparent reason I would just get hum at anything above low volume settings.

I tried line conditioners, filters, different outlets, ups's, audio isolation transformers, different connectors, and ferrite loops. Nothing would stop or reduce the hum. The audio isolation transformer would inject a local AM station directly in to the amp.

The power supply was a switching supply taken from an old laptop.

what fixed it was installing a 3 prong to 2 prong adapter on the plug. The lack of ground on the plug caused the problem to stop.


How to make your own Vanish or SaniFlush crystals

Sometime around 2009 the government banned Vanish and Sani-flush because it contained Sodium Bisulfate. 

The crap it has been replaced with is terrible at cleaning toilets and removing hard water stains. 

It also had the effect of helping to keep older toilets flushing because it dissolved calcium buildup in the jet hole.

use this information at your own risk.

You can't get real Vanish or Sani-flush but you can get the main ingredient that they used.

Just go to a pool supply store and buy Ph- but make sure it says on it sodium bisulfate or sodium hydrogen sulphate.

keep in mind this is pool acid and don't handle the crystals.

place 1/2 cup sodium bisulfate in the toilet bowl let it sit a few minutes and stir it with the bowl brush. wait 15 minutes or longer then scrub as normal. Sodium bisulfate does not fizz or bubble like the original vanish or sani flush because the bubble were for show they did nothing other than neutralize some of the acid made when the crystals dissolved in water.

The remainder of the ingredients was a surfactant (sodium lauryl sulfate), blue dye, and wintergreen scent. Only the sodium bisulfate did anything.

I use it all the time now.


Autocad 2000 not installed properly

You start autocad 2000 that was copied over from an older computer to a windows 10 64 bit computer. You get it working fine, then some time later (probably after a windows update) you get a variation of "this version of autocad was not installed properly".

Issue is that you cannot run the autocad 2000 installer on windows 10 64 bit. 

If you have access to a copy of autocad 2002 even a preview copy run that installer, install it, and it may fix the autocad 2000 install.


Disney Star Wars is dead to me

The only Star Wars that is canon is Episodes 1 through 6.

Though I liked Rogue one, I do not count it as canon. 

I deleted my copies of the DVD for 7 and 8 from my media server. I will be getting rid of the blu-rays.

You have ruined it Disney.

abrams... ALL your movies are garbage.


Arizona Covid-19 running tally

This is my running tally of the Covid-19/china flu/kung flu infections in Arizona. I will update it as often as I can with the number of confirmed cases, and deaths. I will continue to do this till the pandemic is over, I get sick and/or die, or get bored.My sources: azdhs.gov and Wikipedia.


Spanish flu of 1918 average number of deaths

 Arizona Average number of deaths per day (so far) notice the similarities?
3 waves in the spanish flu, and we are on wave 2.

First wave 3-13-2020 to 10-4-2020

  Second wave 10-1-2020 to 3-13-2021

1 year of the rona.

Number of new cases with 7 day moving average.
11.43% of total population infected (Arizona)
1.52% of the worlds population (known infections) 

Arizona Terminal Percentage 1.99%.
Global Terminal Percentage 2.21%.
increase in cases from 10 days ago (Arizona) 1.32% 
Arizona 1 day increase .03%
Average number of new infections per day since 10-01-2020 to 3-13-2021 3741 at present rate of infection it will take 18 years to infect all of AZ (this is a constantly moving estimate).
average number of covid deaths per day since 10-1-2020 to 3-13-2021 66. Average number of deaths per day in all of Arizona for all reasons(based on 2018 numbers) 102

updated 03-13-2021
03-13-2021 one year since I started this, I think this is long enough. Final numbers for the year. Average number of deaths per day 45 average number of infections per day 2273 Mortality rate 1.99%. Average mortality rate for the year 2.47%. (Arizona only)
03-07-2021 Second to last post, I will be wrapping this up on the 1 year anniversary of when I first posted. Levels are now down to 10-2020 numbers and I am bored with this.
02-17-2021 11% of AZ population infected.
02-07-2021 Definitely a downward trend in new infections. Highest number of one day reported infection was 17234 on 1-3-2021 and highest number of reported deaths of 335 on 1-12-2021
01-31-2021 We appear to be over the hump for wave 2.
01-25-2021 10% of Arizona Population infected.
01-15-2021 9% of Arizona population infected.
01-12-2021 All time high number of deaths 335.
01-07-2021 8% Arizona Population infected.
01-03-2021 All time high number of infections in one day 17234.
12-30-2020 7% Arizona Population infected.
12-27-2020 Achievement unlocked  1.03% world population infected.
12-20-2020 we could be over the hump for wave 2 but I bet Christmas morons will fix that.
12-16-2020 6% AZ population infected. Vaccinations started.
12-08-2020 new all time high 12314 new cases in one day.
12-06-2020 achievement unlocked 5% AZ population infected.
12-01-2020 And there it is! All the people who HAD to have thanksgiving together! 10322 new cases today.
11-29-2020 oh boy lets see how many morons get infected because they had to have big thanksgivings. We are at a higher rate (on average) than in the first wave.
11-20-2020 4% AZ population infected 3 years to infect everyone at this rate. 

11-18-2020 Governor has a press conference reiterates current health policies, but does not implement any new lock down, or changes in health policies.
11-15-2020 we are at the same level of infection as we were on 06-20-2020 I predict a peak just after Christmas.
10-29-2020 Second wave appears to be starting. We have had a steady rise for the last month. The governor had a press conference but did not announce closures. I expect that to happen after the election.
10-18-2020 reset average new infections and average deaths per day it was 1072 and 30.
10-11-2020 Stats from first wave:
                    5-16-2020 Highest death rate percentage 4.98%
                    7-1-2020   Highest number of reported infections in one day 4877
                    7-30-2020   Highest reported deaths in one day 172
9-30-2020 Achievement unlocked 3% of Arizona Infected. 194 months (16.16 years to infect all of AZ)
8-9-2020 we are over the hump of the second First wave.

7-26-2020 Added Monthly closeup graphs below.

7-22-2020 we hit 2% of AZ population infected.

7-19-2020 we appear to be over a hump at this time, however when schools reopen in August it will get worse.

7-18-2020 actual numbers are 141265 and 2742.

7-8-2020 new prediction there will be 140112 infections, and 2143 deaths on 7-18-2020.

6-28-2020 1% of the AZ population is now infected.

5-31-2020 Testing Blitz in AZ is reason for more infections being found in the last week.

5-13-2020 my prediction was exceeded on 5-13-2020 with 12176 cases so my calculations are pretty close.

5-4-2020 Prediction 12003 cases by 5-14-2020.

Although this data is pulled from websites that are up to date, it may reflect information that is 1 to 3 weeks behind the actual number of infections.

Stop the spread Stay home!

Remember we are all dying because some fucking moron in another country has to eat an exotic animal, and they haven't stopped because of the pandemic.

For the first time in recorded history, all you have to do to help save the world is stay home and do nothing. You'd think we'd be able to not screw that up.

March 2020
 April 2020
 May 2020
June 2020
July 2020

August 2020

September 2020
October 2020

November 2020
December 2020 

January 2021

February 2021

Death percentage


Zenith Service Manuals

 Zenith Service Manuals in PDF format Volumes 1, 2, and 3.

When it asks you to login or create an account click X in the upper right.
Then Click Download in the upper right corner next to sign up. 

sorry for the poor scan quality, not my scans.


Home Depot's website and stores suck

 Home depots website is one of the worst, if not THE worst website for online browsing and searching.

Recently I was searching for a ballast for a 34.5 inch long 2 bulb T5 flourescent lamp. I have one that I bought from them several years ago. The ballast is bad.

I cannot find a replacement ballast on their website for it.

I could not find the fixture on their website, until I used the manufacturers part number. turns out they have the wrong dimensions for it.

searching their website is a nightmare. Basically you have to know what they call something or what they list it under.

if it doesn't come up when you start typing you most likely won't find it. it constantly returns results that have nothing to do with what you are looking for.

It constalty shows you things that aren't in the store, or you can't even order. if it's not in the store AND I can't order it, don't show it on your fucking worthless website.

I hate using their website, but it's not much better going there in person. They don't carry many things that a hardware store should.

I usually have to got to Ace Hardware or harbor freight to find many things I need. A huge store like Home Depot and they can't even stock common things. Their welding supplies are a shit selection. They don't carry band saw blades for common tools. They have no stock of replacement hammer handles except for specific brands.

I usually order stuff from ebay because of their lack of stock.

Their prices are often ridiculously high.

They don't carry many common types of 220 outlets or outside ouutlet boxes.

They are a piss poor excuse for a hardware store.


The virile copper miner

 Why is the statue in Bisbee called the "virile copper miner"?

See for your self.

I was told (back in college) that if you stood in the right place you would see why he got his name.

Here is the other side for reference.

The wife and I were there today and while I had tried to get these pictures before they never turned out right. This time I got them.


How to un-hide a media server in windows media player

How to un-hide or restore a media server (that you accidentally hid or removed) in windows media player windows 7.
Open windows media player.
view library
Right click other libraries

Select Customize navigation pane.

at the top where is says "yourusername's Library"

click the down arrow on the right.

Select other libraries

put a check mark next to the library or libraries that are missing. 

click ok.


13 Year Anniversary

 13 Year Anniversary of this blog... Yay.


Pololu Micro Maestro 6 DIY Generator Governor

in 2017 I built a small 200 watt DC generator powered by an Echo GT-1000 string trimmer engine. Here is the playlist for that.


If you don't want to watch the whole thing you can watch a wrap up video here:

The biggest problem was that it did not have a governor and so is mostly useless. I could have made one with an arduino or something like that, but I kind of think that's like using a cray to balance your check book. Gensets were out of the question as being too expensive and way to big.

Recently I found a device called the Pololu Micro Maestro 6 It can control 6 servos or any combination of 6 buttons, sensors, and/or POT's. 

Here is the full build:

The most difficult part of this was the script. The script language is basically Fourth. I will provide a more detailed explanation of the program at a later date.

This is the most current script that works:

100 #this does nothing
8800 0 servo # Move servo to middle position
  button # is button on or off
    if #on proceed with program
      too_low # Check if throttle is too low
100 delay
      too_high # check if throttle is too high
    else #off keep checking for on and reset the servo if it was moved.
      goto top

sub too_low
  5 get_position 750 less_than #check the voltage is it below X
    if 0 get_position minus 10#if voltage is too low get position of servo and subtract 100
      over # not sure how this helps
      0 servo # move the servo to the new position
      10 delay # wait
    else  #if voltage is fine do nothing
      goto skip
swap # not sure why but the program won't
drop # work without these commands

sub too_high
  5 get_position 900 greater_than #check the voltage is it above X
    if 0 get_position plus 10 #if voltage is too high get position of servo and add 100
      over # not sure how this helps
      0 servo #move servo to new position
      10 delay #wait
    else #if voltage is fine do nothing
      goto skip2
swap # not sure why but the program won't
drop # work without these commands

sub button
  2 get_position 500 less_than


this video has the explanation of the script above


Bonus video


Tunnels under Cochise College

When I attended Cochise college or as we called it "tumbleweed tech" back in the early to mid 80's the place was probably quite different than it is today. It seems that back then college students were a bit more rowdy then they are today. so much so that the furniture in the men's dorm lobby was replaced with rubber padded prison furniture. Furniture exactly like this:

I worked in the security office as a dispatcher and operator as no one had an outside line and we had to make and connect calls for people using their calling cards. This was annoying and changed when the phone system got hacked. After that they setup each dorm room so that they could have their own phone line and bill. sometimes at night I'd sit and watch horny students run back and forth sneaking in to dorm rooms through windows since men and women visiting each other dorm rooms was strictly monitored and controlled.

I also worked the front desk of the men's and women's dorms checking people in and out. To make sure people were'nt staying and screwing. It was pointless because there was constant parties and screwing going on in both dorms.

Tumbleweed tech is located 8 miles from Douglas, 16 miles from Bisbee, 2 miles from the border and 6 feet from hell.

Some of the things we did for fun were:

Go shooting at the shooting range behind the runway (it's still there). We were allowed to have firearms and they were kept in the security office.

We would also go across highway 80 and run around in the desert hunting and hiking. I spent many a weekend hiking in the desert there.

Exploring mines and hiking in the desert around Bisbee. Including the Easter Sunday Mine. Though we did not know the name at that time.

 Standing in front of part of the Higgins and Czar Mines

Exploring abandoned houses around Douglas. We found a house one time filled floor to ceiling with 1 gallon jugs of water. Probably a stop for illegals.

Running amok on the gunnery range at Ft. Huachuca.

Having keggers in the desert.

Sneak in to the the not very well locked up gym, and explore the tunnels under the college. There is one that goes from a man hole in front of the building where the cafeteria is to a utility room in the gym. On one of those occasions my roommate was running through the tunnel breaking the light bulbs as he went.

Hunt skunks, rabbits, and sonoran toads on campus at night with BB guns and wrist rockets.

Have all dorm water fights.

Launch rockets and fly model airplanes in and around the dorm rooms.

The security office was an interesting place I have long since forgotten the names of the guys who worked there, but one of them we gave the nickname "John Wayne" though he actually look more like Boss Hogg. He had a habit of wearing silvered sun glasses, and he claimed to be a former cop, he acted a lot like a very arrogant Barney Fife. He was very full of himself and full of shit.

There was another guy who was the epitome of the "dirty old man". On one occasion I went with him on his rounds and when we got to the women's locker room he stopped. made a great show of sniffing mightily and said "Smell that? Smells like PUSSY!" I thought it smelled like moldy towels. He would often point his walkie talkie at your crotch hit the transmit button and declare "now you're sterile".

Then there was the young mexican guy who had a thing for really fat chicks. He would bring in chubby chaser mags and look at them when not out on rounds. Then show them to me. Huge fat naked chicks. He was quite weird. We sometimes would sit out at the entrance to the campus with a radar gun and light up passing cars to watch the ones with radar detectors slam on the brakes.

Then there was the security guard that painted his car lemon yellow with flat exterior house paint and a roller brush. He was very proud of it.

At one time there was a room in the men's dorm that they put in a bunch of video and pinball games, it was great until someone figured out how to jimmy the games open and get free games.

On Fridays when the A&P class got out early we'd head in to Aqua Prieta to a place we called the Corona factory. For $2.25 you could get a 6 pack of Corona in a bag on ice, for .10 more you could get a bag of limes. You never asked the price of the beer if you did they would tell you $5 but you just walked up and gave them $2.25. Then we went around back and sat on the dock getting drunk (highly illegal there) while watching people walk illegally across the border which was only 100 feet away. Then you took the bottles back and they gave you $1. So in today's money 6 beers cost $2.81.

Yeah Cochise college was an absolute blast in the 80's I wonder what it is like now.


Things that give me migraines

I have found these 2 things will give me a migraine either within a day or 2 of taking.

Niacin within a couple of hours of taking 125mg of it. 2 days in a row.

Flaxseed oil. I started taking this since fish oil makes me sick. I was taking it for 2 days and got a migraine, then on the 3rd day got another. 4th day no migraine, fifth day another migraine. stopped taking the flaxseed oil and no more migraine. I had not had a migraine prior to this for almost 3 years.


Panelization in EasyEDA

The instructions for panelizing a board in EasyEDA are absolutely terrible and confusing, they lack any useful information. 

In easyeda select tools then panelization.

Select the number of rows and columns BUT keep in mind that their machine can only accept a minimum size board of 7x7 Centimeters. So you will need to select a minimum number of rows and columns that meets or exceeds this number. as an example I have a board they is 18.75x8.5 millimeters. in order to meet the minimum requirements of panel size my board needs to be 4 columns by 10 rows high. The minimum column and row spacing is 1.6mm. I do not need boarders.

Originally based on the instructions (I found) I thought I had to account for the board size when selecting the spacing and put in 18.750 for columns and 8.5 for rows which got me very strange results.

There is still some confusion on whether you need to copy and fix the circuit to each board. it appears that you do not (JLCPCB will supposedly do this for you), but there is conflicting information about this on line.


Panasonic RE-7700 Automatic Tuning Stereo

picked this up from goodwill today for very little as it did not power on.
The reason it did not power on was that a small tab of copper or copper plated steel that actuated the power switch had been knocked off the switch.
in order to get the top of this unit off remove the screws circled in red, to get the bottom plate off remove the red and the green circled screws.
You will also need to remove this screw from the top side. I ended up drilling a hole through the plastic in order to get to it. You will definitely have to do it to put the screw back in.
The schematic is inside the stereo under the top cover. If yours is missing here is a very high resolution scan. Dial string instructions included.
Or you can download a pdf that contains it, and better printable copies.

When it asks you to login or create an account click "no Thanks, Continue to View"
Then Click Download in the upper right corner.